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Hemline Hack - Maxi Dress

I absolutely love maxi dresses! They are effortless, can be dressed up or down and bonus - I don’t have to worry about shaving my legs LOL

For the maxi dress, I measured from my natural waist down to the floor. TIP – I place a tape measure underneath my foot with the 3 inch marking right at the floor and measure up holding the tape measure taut. When I read off the number (in this case, 43 inches), I deduct 2 inches from that to get my true measurement. Being able to read the number at my waist versus the floor and being able to accurately hold the tape measure gives me a better sense of confidence in my measurements.

I draw directly on my fabric when hacking patterns to maxi length and just write on the pattern piece the length measurement I used for future reference. Measure down from the shorten/length marking along the fold of your fabric and mark where your new hemline will be. Using a quilting ruler, yard stick, etc. measure across the width of your fabric. I set up my fabric to be as wide as my pattern piece since the combined width of the bodice and sleeve allows for a good amount of width for your maxi hem. I prefer a slimmer fit for my maxi dress so I used the side seam of the tee extending it down to my maxi hemline to create the side seam of my maxi. Here you can see how I used my curved and quilting ruler to create that side seam curving it to equal the width of the fabric about 5-6 inches up from the hem.

Follow all the sewing steps as written. However, due to the weight of knit fabric, I recommend stabilizing the shoulder seams and neckline using elastic. Here is how I do that:

I first sew the seam using my sewing machine and exercise my elastic. By doing both, it will assist in preventing both the fabric and the elastic from unnecessarily stretching which can cause your fabric to look gathered. Then, either on your sewing machine or your serger, line the elastic right along your seam line. If using a sewing machine, sew a wide zig zag and if using a serger, disengage your knife to not accidentally cut the elastic and serge. When attaching the elastic to the seam allowance, hold the elastic taut but don’t stretch it. When stabilizing the v-neck version, start at one tip of the v, sew around the neck line to the other side overlapping the elastic.

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