(Closed) Wearing my grandmother's 1950s dress… How should I alter it?

posted 4 years ago in Dress
Post # 3
2297 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

Wow!  that is so gorgeous, and so special! That neckline is stunning on you! What about raising the waist to make it straight, and adding a sparkly belt?  And then see if you can take away the ruffles and maybe do tiers of lace if you want to keep it all lace, or do a plain fabric underneath so you just have the lovely lace overlay.  Whatever you do I think it is going to look beautiful!

Post # 4
594 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: March 2013

I know you like the sleeves but if it were me I’d cut the lace off above the sweetheart neckline and wear as is! It’s GORGEOUS!

Post # 5
159 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: July 1997

Not helpful (I know) but I wouldn’t change a thing.  It looks beautiful on you!  It is such a cool dress and it fits like it was made for you – how lucky you are that it is in such wonderful shape.

Post # 6
1671 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

@erinandbear: I say raise the waist line to a natural waist. Leave the sleeves, they are beautiful! Then for the skirt, maybe you could do lace tiers or change the skirt type. 

Post # 7
45658 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

It is a beautiful dress and your grandmother is lucky to have a granddaughter interested in wearing it again.

I would straightern the waistline, remove the lower layers of tulle and let it rock as a tea length dress.

Post # 8
2305 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: April 2016

I’m wearing my grandma’s dres too!

I would either leave it as is (i love the bottom!) or you could change the bottom by adding a layer of tulle or organza or something to cover the bottom part, starting just under where the lace ends. 

So it would look like this skirt

Post # 9
765 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

@erinandbear: Totally agree about the V-shape of the bodice, and the tulle ruffles. The bodice might be tough to fix, though. Also, since the lace doesn’t extend the length of the skirt, it might make changing the skirt difficult too, without making it look strange or building a whole new skirt. 


This might be a totally dramatic suggestion…but have you thought of making it tea length (stop about where the lace does)? That could be SO pretty…


Post # 10
5554 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: December 2011

Don’t touch that incredible lace neckline! It is stunning on you and not another cookie cutter sweetheart neck. I think bring the waist up to straight across for sure,. I don’t know of you could remove the tulle totally and have a tea length dress which I think would be gorgeous (and fairly period appropriate) or have some other fabric instead of the tulle.  I don’t think more lace would work because I am sure matching that lace would be almost impossible. 

Your dress is gorgeous! 

Post # 11
1193 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

@erinandbear:  I’d raise the waist, make is a straight waist possibly add a belt and cut the ruffles off on make it a tea length dress

Post # 12
2288 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: Central Park

I think that a seamestress could make the waistline straight and cut out the pleated ruffles. You could replace it with just tulle if you still want a small ballgown.

Post # 13
559 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

I actually think the basque waist really emphasizes the sweetheart neckline and gives the dress a great shape.  I like the suggestions of stopping the skirt where the lace is and making it a tea-length skirt, I think that would be really elegant.  If you really hate the waist, see about making it straight and maybe putting a sash there — nothing blingy, just a subtle bit of pale color could be really nice.  But overall, it’s just so lovely and special as it is, I don’t blame you for picking it!

Post # 14
1226 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

Honesly, I wouldn’t change a thing :). I would just get it fitted perfectly.

Post # 15
77 posts
Worker bee

I would make the waist straight across, remove all the tulle and turn it into a fit and flare. 

Post # 16
257 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

Honestly I wouldn’t do a thing. That dress is stunning on you

The topic ‘Wearing my grandmother's 1950s dress… How should I alter it?’ is closed to new replies.

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