A frock for boobs (and babies)

So many moons ago I started Operation Boob – my attempt to create a breastfeeding friendly wardrobe.

It sounded like a fun adventure at first but really I should have started a lot earlier because, despite this being my 2nd child, I hadn’t accounted for how little time and sleep I’d be having once she was born.

So far I’ve made a few blouses, a few shirts, a jumpsuit, a jumper and a couple of jackets. But truthfully I got bored of sewing things that constrained me so style wise. So I pretty much gave up sewing for me – until now!

Little Beatrice (the world’s clingiest baby) was getting Christened and due to her aversion for bottles I needed a dress with “access”. According to a couple of reviews on Pattern Review this McCalls pattern, M7081, was suitable for breastfeeding despite being in cotton poplin fabric.

I got this lovely grey/blush coloured floral fabric from the Cloth Shop in Edinburgh. I got 3 metres so I could make a sleeveless version of view D.

It’s an easy pattern, very straightforward to sew up. The main change I made was to use bias binding for the armholes rather than facings which I hate.

Unfortunately I had serious issues with fitting the bodice. That’s not McCalls’s fault – it’s my expanded waistline that was the problem. Weightwise I’m not far off my pre baby weight but clearly it’s all distributed in different places.

This was further compounded by the lack of mirror in my sewing shed. I have to go in the house, past the barking dog, dodge the outstretched arms of the clingy baby and upstairs to look in the mirror every time I want to check the fit which means I didn’t do any fitting until the bodice was all sewn up.


I ended up unpicking the bodice 7 times and eventually cutting off an inch of the skirt to make it all fit. I’m really going to have to buy a mirror for the shed!

So final result is a lovely breastfeeding friendly dress suitable for a special occasion or just popping to the shop for milk. I love this pattern I’m just going to have to go to a few more pilates classes to shift this baby weight to wherever it was before!

And here is a lovely pic of Beatrice and her godparents.

13 thoughts on “A frock for boobs (and babies)

  1. Hurray! A whole dress while you have a baby. I’m very impressed. And a lovely dress, too. I have this pattern in my stash, uncut. I never did master the baby and sewing balance…… If you do get to Pilates on top of all this you will be my hero😊

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  2. Love dress and great fit after all that back and forth – a mirror would definitely save you all that running around and with a new baby you do enough running around already! 🙂 I find so often that I just wouldn’t buy a pattern seeing how it’s depicted on its jacket but once I’ve seen it on an actual person I realize what a nice pattern it really is!


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