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Ladies, I am super sad because one of the first dresses I made seems to no longer be wearable! I made it back before I knew about pre-washing fabric. The fashion fabric was pre-washed because it was a thrifted sheet, but the lining was unwashed white cotton. Well, you can probably guess what happened...I washed it and the lining is now much, much smaller and the fashion fabric bags out like crazy. Since it was already really fitted, it's no longer wearable as is.


So my question is, is there a way to stretch the cotton lining fabric somehow? If not, is there a way to salvage this dress? Taking off the zipper and skirt and undoing all the seams and cutting a new lining and resewing it sounds so daunting...I'm ready to give this dress up for lost, but I'd really rather not since I love it. Has this ever happened to anyone before? What did you do? I feel incredibly stupid right now, but at least I'll never again forget to pre-wash anything!

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Can you wear the dress without the lining? If so, I would probably cut the lining out and then finish the raw edges rather than go through the process of re-lining it.

Unfortunately no, there is not a known method of stretching the cotton lining  in the dress.

This type of problem is very hard to decide what advice to give because so much depends on the actual construction and style of the garment, with pictures it would be much easier to be able to assess these details and come to a suitable conclusion of how I, personally would advise you, try to solve the problem.  This would not be the 'only way', just 'a way'.

I am a little curious when you say that you would have to 'undo all the seams', that makes it sound as if you cut the lining and outer and then made them up as if one piece of fabric,  I could consider this as more of an 'interlining technique', because linings tend to only be attached at neckline and armholes & sometimes at waist seams, but not down the vertical side/back seams.

However if this is the method of construction you have used, you could try taking a quick unpick or small sharp scissors and CAREFULLY cut the lining only along the side of the stitching  and then pull the rest of the lining out the other side.  You would probably, still have to unpick the neck & armholes, it all depends upon the original construction.  Then make a new lining that hangs loose inside the garment attached at the neck & armholes as mentioned before.

I hope this post is of some use to you in deciding what to do with your dress.  If you need further suggestions please add some photos, particularly of the inside, and I (& others, I'm sure) will do our best to help.  But it might be that the only way, is the long way you've already described to remedy this problem.

The neatest way will be to unpick the lining stitches where it joins the dress and remove it. the quick and dirty way will be to cut the lining free and finish the raw edges. How much do you love it? If you get a lot of pleasure out of it, I would do it the right way. But the lining is, sadly, a lost cause.

It happened to me with a coat, which was made out of a red cotton fabric  - and I really loved the color. There was no other way than to do a new lining...


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