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Dahlia dress

Colette

Seasons change and wardrobes transition, but Dahlia remains the perfect dress all year long.

Version 1 is perfect for cooler weather; the 3/4-sleeved raglan- style dress has a flat front skirt which sports a kick pleat at the back hem. Small gathers create gentle curves around an inset waist yoke. The neckline and sleeves are finished with bias tape for a clean look without the need for fussy facing pieces.

Version 2 is summery and sleeveless, featuring straps cleverly constructed from bias tape, and a six-panel skirt. This version of Dahlia is ideal for warmer months, for layering under sweaters, or for creating an understated cocktail dress.

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Additional information

Size

UK 4 / US 0 / EU 32, UK 6 / US 2 / EU 34, UK 8 / US 4 / EU 36, UK 10 / US 6 / EU 38, UK 12 / US 8 / EU 40, UK 14 / US 10 / EU 42, UK 16 / US 12 / EU 44, UK 18 / US 14 / EU 46, UK 20 / US 16 / EU 48, UK 22 / US 18 / EU 50

Sewing level

Confident Beginner

Make time

All day

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What others are saying

  1. Avatar

    Dahlia

    iribeiro

    Pattern instructions: They were pretty thorough, I do like the instructions separated by version, but if you’re printing your instructions it will take up more space. I don’t have much else to say other that I think that the the waist yoke piece should have an indication of the right side up, I inverted the front yoke pieces and only figured that out when I tried to pin the back yoke to the bodice and the notches weren’t even close to each other. Remember your yoke should look like a frown and not a smile (as usual in other garments). Another detail that irked me a bit was the instruction to staystitch at 5/8 of an inch along the back and top of sleeves, and then you bind the raw edges with a double fold 1/4 of inch bias tape – why not suggest scant 1/4 of an inch? I had to take out the entire line of staystiching. Fitting and alterations: This pattern is a bit tough to fit, the neckline was way too large for me, and it was pretty much impossible to figure that out until you had the bodice almost finished (i.e. you only are sure of it after you gather your front piece and secure it with the binding. I cut a size 10, and took out 1 inch at each front raglan seam and 1.5 inches at the back raglan seam. For the skirt I took out 2 inches at each seam, and reduced the hip curve to a more straight line, I’ve got a hollow at my hip, and curvy hip lines look strange on me. Fabric: I used a cotton/polyester chambray, it’s pretty easy to work, presses well and does not slide away. It would be perfect with a bit more of body, but it’s perfect for Summer as is. Difficulty level: I don’t agree with the beginner level, it’s a pretty hard to fit pattern, and if sewn on wool it will require fabric handling skills that not every beginner has. It does imply a fair amount of hand finishing and sewing on bias tape that I consider it only accessible to a more advanced beginner or intermediate.

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  2. Avatar

    Dahlia

    StTrinians

    Photo now attached

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  3. Avatar

    Dahlia

    rbjaneite

    Having heard of lots of frustrations with this pattern, be reassured, it’s not all bad! I made this version from a light flannel fabric (£3/meter from Woolcrest Textiles, so basically a wearable muslin) and have enjoyed wearing it. I did have to add a dart in at each side of the neck for it to sit flat. This was easy to do – I just pinched it up and sewed the dart before binding the neckline. I didn’t make any other changes, but next time will lengthen the skirt (I’m 5’8″, and it is above-the-knee length even with a tiny hem – I hadn’t realised I’d need to alter it, but the skirt sits higher than I’d anticipated even with the waistband section). The silhouette of this dress is lovely, and I plan to make more.

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  4. Avatar

    Dahlia

    rbjaneite

    Close up showing my neck dart. Also, I chose to turn the neckline binding fully in, rather than having it show. This was a bit tricky to stitch down in the areas where the neckline gathers, but it worked out okay in the end.

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  5. Avatar

    Dahlia

    StTrinians

    I fell in love with this pattern when it was released, and ordered the PDF version immediately. Without actually thinking through what ws entailed in printing , trimming and sticking together 70 pieces of paper! That was actually quite good fun in the end. By the time I got around to making it I had read a couple of blog reviews mentioning problems with the neckline – too big, not enough room to move your arms up and down etc, and decided to have a first attempt using an old linen tablecloth rather than go out & buy fabric for it. Even though I chose what I thought was the best size for me for the bodice (and the next size up for the skirt) the neckline still came out oversized, and I had to do a lot of adapting to get it so that it does not fall off my shoulders. The finished dress is wearable, but I rather fell out of love with it in the process, and I’m not sure it looks right on me either, but it makes for a very pretty gardening dress!

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