Repairing a Cutting Mistake


A very merry baby bubble

Have you ever been in the middle of constructing a project and realized you’ve made a big fabric-cutting mistake? These things never seem to happen when you have plenty of time or yards of fabric left over, of course, but don’t fear – sometimes an “oops” moment can wind up leading to a very merry design accident.

Martha Broyles encountered this very issue when constructing this adorable Christmas baby bubble from our October/November 2013 issue of Sew Beautiful. While sewing the bubble in preparation for the baby’s first visit to see Santa, she discovered she’d cut her back yoke 1/2- to 3/4 inch too short. To cover up the mistake, she piped both the top and bottom of the repair, making it look intentional, and then spaced the lowest button between the piping to give the repair the look of a belted sash in the back.


The bubble back has the look of a piped sash.

Follow Martha’s steps below for this lengthening/altering yoke trick. NOTE: The pattern used for the design pictured here is “Baby Bubbles” by Chery Williams and the plate is “Candy-liscious” by Ellen McCarn.

1. Determine depth you want repair to be, further shortening your back yoke if necessary to accommodate your sewn-in “belt.” Be sure to include a seam allowance on the yoke, and on both sides of your repair/belt piece to accommodate piping seam allowance. Cut repair/belt pieces twice the length of finished back yoke pieces.


2. Attach piping to bottom of outer back yokes, making sure to only pipe to yoke foldline; tuck end of piping down and fold other half inside lining (fig. 1). One side at a time, sew repair/belt piece across back yokes attaching to piping (place repair/belt, to piping, right side together and raw edges even.) Working from yoke side, stitch along line that attached piping. Turn to right side (fig. 2). Press belt away from yoke.

3. For double insurance, fold your garment as it will be worn, making sure front and back yokes are going to match before going further (fig. 3).

4. Attach piping to bottom edge of repair/belt, again stopping at foldline.

5. Attach back skirt/lower back romper to back yoke per garment instructions.

Find more great projects and techniques in our October/November 2013 issue of Sew Beautiful.

Happy Sewing,



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