A few months ago I flew out of state to attend my nephew’s wedding. I was flying one of those budget airlines where every amenity, even water, is an extra cost. I paid for one carry on bag for a four day trip, so I needed a wedding guest dress that could be rolled and stuffed into a small suitcase. A comfy, wrinkle-free polyester jersey knit dress fit the bill perfectly.
The pattern I used is Simplicity 2580, which of course I bought the only way to buy big four patterns, on sale at JoAnn’s for about $1.00. I was attracted to the neckline of View C and the slightly A-lined silhouette. I traded out the short, petal sleeve for a straight, 3/4 length sleeve (from McCalls 6697).
While JoAnn’s is my go to stop for patterns and notions, I rarely buy fabric there. But I was limited on my fabric shopping opportunities for the project, so I forced myself to make a selection at JoAnn’s, and I rather like this out-of-the-box choice for me. The colors are fun, and there’s plenty of pattern to hide bulges that can so easily show on a slinky knit.
The front bodice is self-lined and is actually folded at the front neckline which creates a nice, smooth finish. I finished the back neckline with a double needle and trimmed the raw edge close to the stitching.
I added clear elastic on the seam where the bodice is attached to the skirt. This is a technique I first learned making the Moneta Dress and have used it several times since.
I am not a big fan of machine hems on dresses, but I think a double needle on a super stretchy knit is a safe bet.
LET’S BE HONEST:
1. I cut a straight size 14 for the bodice and the sleeve (from McCalls 6697). For the skirt, I graded to a size 16, and then additionally added a slight bit of flair which totalled 8″ of width at the bottom. I wanted to make sure the fabric draped nicely over my mid-section, hips, and thighs. I am very happy with the fit.
2. I have wrestled with skipped stitches for years using the double needle on slinky or thick knits. I finally bought a STRETCH double needle (had to order it online) and, oh my gosh, it has solved all my problems. Had I known what a difference it makes, I would have bought one 30 years ago!
3. I love the neckline on this dress! I think it is probably universally flattering on women of all bust sizes.
4. This pattern sews up easily for a seamstress experienced with sewing on knits.
This dress is perfect on you. How did you ever see the possibilities of that print. I have the hardest time visualizing the fabric in the finished garment. Brilliant!
Thanks for sharing!
Deb, Anderson, CA
Thank you! I actually did not notice the bands of color and patterns in the fabric until I had it spread out to cut, then I liked it even more!
Very elegant dress and it fits you beautifully. Your alterations worked out perfectly.
Thank you! Definitely one of the beauties of sewing is being able to make a style of garment that wouldn’t fit correctly in ready wear.
A very flattering neckline and sleeve length. It looks like a stylish but comfortable dress to wear.
That is very flattering on you!