Posted by Edelweiss Patterns on May 24, 2011
For years, I struggled with trying to find modest clothing in the stores, but without much success. It seemed like everything that was even remotely pretty was also either too low, too short, too tight, or all of the above! Any time I went shopping at the mall I would usually come back on the verge of tears, after another unsuccessful attempt to find an outfit that was beautiful without being revealing. Except for the extremely plain, unisex looking t-shirts (which I do not admire at all!) every top I could find was low-cut, and many of the necklines were not compatible with camisoles. Some were much too dressy to wear a plain, white tank underneath, or were too wide in the shoulders for a camisole to work with. I desperately wished there was a way to make the lovely tops I saw modest to wear, but most were so low-cut that I couldn’t think of a solution. Occasionally I would find a nice shirt to add to my wardrobe, but for the most part I had to stick with plain styles that were not my cup of tea!
Then a few years ago, a couple of stretch lace manufacturers which do production runs for the clothing industry started opening up their products to some larger fabric brokers and sewing stores. There had been some demand for it for awhile, and at one point the bridal department at one of America’s largest fabric stores had made a written notice that read: “Please note: the Bridal Department does not carry stretch lace and has no way of getting it.”
But all that changed around 2008, when shipments of stretch lace trims made their way into the notions department of a local fabric store. Oh, I was so excited! For the first time in what seemed like ages, I was able to wear fashionable, beautiful, and still modest tops! Now any time I saw a shirt on sale, I no longer thought to myself, “Oh, I can’t wear that because it’s too low,” but I realized, “I could put stretch lace in that and it would be just fine!” And as I altered my tops I found that these shiny stretch laces actually made the tops much prettier than they would have been otherwise!
Now I am thrilled to be able to offer the same products online for seamstresses all over the country to use for the same purpose! One lady wrote me, “Thank you so much! This has made it possible for me to finally buy clothes again!”
I like to keep a stash of laces in my sewing box, of several different style laces so I can whip out a piece of stretch lace whenever I find a new blouse in a store. For instructions on how to fill in a low-cut neckline, you can purchase our Modest Clothing e-book here which shows detailed photographs and instructions for making nearly any style of clothing modest! But I’ve also included photo instructions in this post for how to combine multiple pieces of lace to create a wider panel that is perfect for lower cut tops!
Of course this is just one of the many uses for these beautiful lace trims. I’ve used them on the tops of plain camisoles, gathered into a ruffle down the front of a sweater, and ruffled at the ends of both short sleeves and 3/4 length sleeves. I’d love to hear from you if you’ve come up with any other uses for them.
Visit this post for instructions on how to make a narrow lace into a wide panel for low necklines.