Once or twice a year the same topic comes up repeatedly in the CSC Facebook group, slips! Every time members come up with recommendations, but they all have the same flaw, the size range is downright pitiful. Trying to find a full slip pattern above a 50 inch bust is probably one of the hardest things I’ve ever researched!
It really is a shame because slips are so wonderful and practical to wear. I’m a huge fan of slips because they help support your clothing and sometimes eliminate the need to completely line a dress. Most of what is available commercially is so boring, but 50 years ago slips came in all kinds of styles and colors. By sewing your own slips you can make customize them to your own wardrobe!
Here are the options I was able to find that went above a 50 inch bust.
Full Slips – Woven
Knipmode Slipdress – This pattern is described as a slip dress, but it has great potential as an under slip too. It has great coverage with a modesty panel in the front, lace detailing, and it is cut on the bias. This pattern was in the April 2017 issue of Knipmode and is also available for sale on their website. It goes up to a size 54 (54in bust).
Seamwork Lisbon – This slip pattern has some nice features. The lace straps meet at the center back which means they won’t slip down your shoulders and the bias cut panels will help the fabric mold to your body. Seamwork patterns don’t have the great track record on fit, but this one doesn’t include sleeves, so it might be easier to fit than others. Lisbon fits up to a size 26 (54in bust).
Vogue 1386 – This is actually part of a top/dress pattern that is in Vogue’s Today’s Fit by Sandra Betzina Collection. The pattern includes a self lined slip with a scoop neckline and goes up to a size J (55in bust). It is out of print, but I included it because it is still available to purchase through the Vogue site.
Butterick 5761 – Technically this is a dress pattern, but a slip dress style that would lend itself well to becoming an under slip. It features princess seams, thin straps, and a zipper (though I’m willing to bet that could be removed depending on your ease preference). B5761 is part of Connie Crawford’s line and goes up to a 6X (68in bust).
Style Arc Alisha – Like the Vogue pattern, Alisha is a sheer dress pattern that includes an under slip pattern as well. This is the pattern I find most like the classic slip of my dreams with its slim straps, gathered bust cup, and figure skimming skirt. Alisha goes up to a size 30 (58.25in bust).
Full Slips – Knit
Scroop Wonder Unders – This slip pattern comes with a few other underwear options and is the only specifically labeled slip pattern I found in the knit category. It comes in two lengths and has a higher scoop neck to provide coverage. The Wonder Unders pattern goes up to a size 50 (50in bust).
Rad Patterns Lucky Lingerie – Another pattern that comes with a bunch of different options. Lucky Lingerie is a cute little babydoll style with an twist front and keyhole back opening. It also comes with nursing and maternity options. Yay! Lucky Lingerie goes up to a size 4X (58-67in bust).
Rad Patterns The Everything Tank – This tank lives up to its name by having a ton of options and one of those is a mini dress. Like the Lucky Lingerie pattern, Everything Tank also comes with nursing and maternity options which is a rare find in a slip pattern. It goes up to a 4X (58-67in bust).
Tuesday Stitches Tropo Camisole – Okay, yes this is a camisole. However Erin recently posted a tutorial to turn this into a dress and it made me think it would make a great slip too. Tropo also comes with a nursing option and multiple cup sizes so it is a worthy option to consider. It goes up to a 24 (52in high bust).
The slip pattern landscape is pretty bleak for the curvy sewing crowd. As you probably noticed most of the patterns I found were not actually slip patterns, but sometimes curvy sewers have to get creative to solve their problems. I found gobs of patterns that toped out at a 40-44in bust and then boom. The drop off was extreme and maddening.
I decided to try one from the lot and see how it would work out as a slip. My requirements were it needed to be a woven slip, it should have gathered bust cups, and be available for download since I was on a time crunch. After perusing the options I landed on the Knipmode slip dress because it met all my requirements PLUS it is a brand of patterns that we don’t review frequently. Sometimes it is nice to try something new.
- Pattern name – Knipmode Slip Dress
- Size range (with measurements) – 34-54 (32/26/36 to 54/46/56)
- What size did you make? – I blended sizes. 42 bust, 46 waist, and 48 hip.
- What are your measurements, height, and body type? – I have a 42 inch bust, 35 inch waist, and a 47 inch hip. I’m 5’6″ and a busty pear shape.
- What adjustments did you make and how long did they take? – I purposefully selected a size smaller in the bust and then did a 1 inch full bust adjustment to the cup. I also did a sway back adjustment. It didn’t take very long, but gosh it is annoying doing adjustments on tiny pieces!
- What fabric did you use? – Since this was my test version I used some polyester satin from my stash. I bought it at Joann’s several years ago and it might even be part of the Casa Collection.
- What was the construction process like? Did the instructions make sense to you? – Okay, this is where using a pattern in another language was…not ideal. Downloading the pattern, selecting a size, gathering materials, and cutting it out all went totally fine. Just as easy as any other pattern. However I could just not figure out the directions very well. Google translator was not much help. It did give me some key phrases though so I was able to figure out the bust cup had a pleat and gathering, but I mostly just winged it. There aren’t very many pattern pieces so it was really pretty straight forward.
- How do you like the pattern’s fit? Do you think the design works well for your particular body shape? – I really do like the pattern’s fit. The pieces fit together perfectly and I love the way the skirt skims my body without clinging too tightly. Blending sizes was the way to go since there isn’t a huge amount of ease in the pattern. The only big adjustment I had to make was hacking off several (6-7) inches of length since the dress is intended to hit below the knee and most of my clothes land above the knee.
- Will you make the pattern again? If so, what fit or design changes will you make? – I would make this again! I really like the way it fits and it would be really wonderful in a more luxurious fabric. My main complaint is the straps are pretty wide. I could use a narrower lace instead, but the straps would still sit pretty far out on my shoulders to wear with a sleeveless dress. This is prefect to wear under my winter clothes.
- Do you have any advice on this pattern for other curvy sewers? Are there any resources (blog posts, fitting books, tutorials) that helped you sew this piece up? – This was my first time sewing something from a European pattern company and it was super successful. I wouldn’t recommend trying to translate a pattern if you’re a beginner, but if you have a few garments worth of experience I’m sure you could figure it out. After all, most clothes are constructed in similar ways. Just make sure you keep a translation option close at hand 🙂
Anyone else working on slips? I’m sure I’ve missed some options so please share in the comments and we can all have a happy colorful collection of beautiful underclothes!