I love the look of maxi dresses, but the problem is usually either they show too much skin for my preference, or you can’t nurse in them, or both. So I have been drifting off into my head (and probably giving the kids permission to do all kinds of things without realizing) and thinking of so many ideas for how to make one that is both modest and nursing friendly. This is one of them.
I will admit up front, this is a total cheat, because it starts with a ready-to-wear item from the store. But I still think it’s rather brilliant, so I will share it with you because it’s oh-so-easy, too!
I started with a clearance knit shirt (in my size, maybe slightly bigger) that had a button placket half way down the shirt.
Next I measured about an inch or inch and a quarter below the bottom of the detail (to leave room for a seam allowance) and cut.
Next is just making the skirt out of coordinating fabric, and attaching it. Important – leave the whole bottom edge of the under-panel free when you stitch the skirt on. The nursing access is to lift the bottom of the panel to nurse. Since this is knit, it stretches fine for that purpose and it won’t fray.
Here’s the dress I finished yesterday:
The bottom I used here was just a regular tiered type deal. I shirred most of the top tier to give it a bit more fitted look under the empire waist. I think you could figure out your own preference on the skirt, but if you want I can provide the dimensions I used for mine. I also added pockets. If you’re interested in a pocket tutorial I can certainly do that soon, too. Just let me know in the comments!
There are so many possibilities for this sort of top – such as a peasant style top with elastic neckline, a cowl style neckline, etc – this method would still work, and you get a perfectly matched underlayer for nursing modesty. I wish I needed as many dresses as I have ideas! Ha. Good thing I am already severely limited by there only being 24 hours a day. And, you know, having to feed the kids occasionally.
What do you think? Have any other ideas?