Dress commission.

I ran the gamut of emotions with this dress. But I love how it turned out!


My friend and coworker Shaina told me of her unfulfilled search for a Pride and Prejudice style dress with a gathered mid-length skirt and 3/4 sleeves in linen, and asked me if I’d make her one.


I stressed about it more than necessary.  Part of my issue was that I don’t know how to drape and create my own patterns, so I had to find a pattern that worked.  None of the regency era patterns I found were quite right…


So I ended up frankensteining the bodice of Simplicity 1537, the sleeve and placket from Colette Hawthorn, and the skirt from Butterick 6582, adding pockets (wth this method), moving the zipper from the back to the side seam, and adding a keyhole opening to the back.



I used a beautiful Kaufman washer linen and cotton blend in denim from Fabric.com and a small scale floral print from my stash for the facings, pockets, and one of my favorite details, bias binding for the skirt hem.


I serged all the seams.  I inserted the zipper by hand basting it first, something I’ve never done before, with better than usual but still not perfect results.  How do you counteract the thicker seam where the skirt and bodice meet?


The only thing I am bothered by is I totally forgot to interface the facings!  So the neckline rolls forward a bit.  I don’t think it’d be too hard to remedy later, if necessary.

I also leveled a hem for the first time.  In 17 years of sewing dresses, I finally leveled a hem!  As you can see, it was needed. 


Shaina loved her dress, which brings me great joy.  I hope she loves it for years to come!

4 thoughts on “Dress commission.

  1. Great job combining patterns! I’m trying to learn to have the patience for such careful planning. I recently learned to understitch the facing. Wonder if that would remedy the rolling?

    1. Thank you! I was pretty proud of myself, honestly. I under stitch my facings maybe half the time and I’m not really sure how much of a difference it makes. I seldom see it on RTW clothing so I wonder what the difference is…

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