Friday, August 6, 2010

~A Housedress

My sister and I made this dress for my mom recently. Grammie helped us customize the pattern to fit my mom on our most recent trip up there. She taught us how to make sure the shoulders fit well for a more flattering fit. The skirt has gores to control the fullness. We also made sure that the neckline was big enough to slip on over her head. That way there is no messing with zippers and it really is an easy on, easy off dress!

We made the piping from some adorable light blue gingham and some thick yarn from Wal Mart! You have to do what you have to do when they do not carry the right color in stock! It is sometimes cheaper to make your own from scraps than buy it pre-made.

Over all, this dress cost less than $10 because the fabric was bought previously on sale, we did not need a zipper and the buttons were also bought on sale. You really cannot do better considering how well it fits.

Those of you who know my mother will not be surprised that since she liked it so much, she has plans for more. Lots more! Grammie told me how to change the pattern to make functional buttons all the way down the front and how to change the sleeves and neckline for different looks. All the fabrics were bought on sale so all 10 dresses should not be more than $100 together once it is all said and done. Not having to put in zippers really makes a huge difference. We bought a huge bag of white buttons when a small store had a sale and we get a lot of thread from yard sales and thrift stores. Always keep and eye out and it can really pay off!

ETA: Maria asked what pattern we used or if we drafted it. The short answer is that a pattern was used way back when but the existing pattern has been modified so many times that it really is not like the original pattern anymore! The good news is that you can make a dress like it very easily. All you need is a basic dress pattern that has darts and a basic sleeve. If you just raise the waistline and change the sleeves a bit and make the skirt gored, you have this dress! Omitting the zipper is quite simple too. All you have to do is make sure that the neckline is big enough to go over the head and that there is 3-4" of ease throughout the garment to get it over the shoulders and bust-line easily. I hope this helps! I can't promise, but there are thoughts of coming out with a pattern like this over at Practically Pretty. Drop Bettie Need a line and tell her that you would be interested :)

As Always,
Bethany Lynn


  1. Did you draft the pattern? I don't think you gave a pattern #.

    Your mother looks lovely! :) I especially like the piping, it goes beautifully with the color of the dress. And no zippers! That is one comfortable dress :)

    Enjoy your blessings,


  2. Maria, I went ahead and edited the post so hopefully that will answer your question :)

    I think the piping really makes the dress :)


  3. It's really nice. I could never sew 10 dresses!

  4. Your mother looks so lovely and feminine in her new dress! How nice for you to make it for her!

  5. This is so pretty! I love the material, and it fits so well. Is there a tie in the back?
    Beautiful work!

  6. Anne, nope, no tie. It has darts in the back bodice and the skirt is also gored in the back so that is how it gets its shaping :)

    Thank you all!