Isca shirt dress

Marilla Walker


In stock

Buy the Isca Shirt dress (Iss-ca) sewing pattern from Marilla Walker, it has two versions. View A is a shirt dress which is very fitted at the shoulders and relaxed at the waist. The waist seam is higher at the front and lower at the back for a flattering drape. The dress has three quarter length sleeves and a gathered skirt, collar and stand, separate button bands, shoulder reinforcements, deep yoke front pockets, lapped seams, front and back skirt gathers and double turned hems on sleeves and skirt. It can be worn true to size or a couple of sizes up for a cool oversized look. View B has a semi loose fitting draped front shirt dress with bust and back shoulder shaping. The sleeves are three quarter length. and the waist adjustable with a draped wrap that ties to the left hand side of the dress. The neckline features a neck band with centre front button fastening. Other features are the shoulder reinforcements, patch shirt pockets, lapped seams, back waist darts and double turned hems on sleeves and skirt.

Suggested fabrics: light to medium weight fabrics such as shirting cotton, linen or chambray.

Fabric requirements: View A – 150cm (60”) wide // 2.2m – 2.7m / 2½ – 3 yds, View B – 150cm (60”) wide fabric // 2.45m – 2.8m / ¾ – 3 yds.

Sizing: 1-10, approx. UK 6-22. Please see the size chart.

Notions: View A // interfacing – .05m (½yd) (based on 80cm wide, but widths vary greatly), View B // interfacing – 0.5m (½yd) (based on 80cm wide, but widths vary greatly).

This is rated intermediate as there are a lot of steps.

This sewing pattern is available in PAPER format.

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Additional information


Cottons / Chambray / Lawn / Quilting, Linen, Silk / Satin / Sateen, Wools / Suiting


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, UK 24 / US 20 / EU 52

Sewing level


Make time

All day

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4 out of 5 stars

5 reviews

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What others are saying

  1. Avatar

    5 out of 5 Perfect shirtdress


    I really enjoyed sewing this dress and love wearing it, so I horoughly recommend the pattern. There are two versions and I made version A in pure linen, which turned out to be an ideal choice. It would work well in many fabrics though, such as chambray, soft denim, lightweight wool, flannel and even fabrics with more drape like viscose/rayon. The pattern is good value as it actually includes two different dresses, the only common pattern piece being the sleeves . The instructions are set out separately too so there’s no danger of following the wrong set.
    The fit is important at the shoulders and bust but the waist is loose and the hips generous, so you’re unlikely to have fit problems. The instructions explain how to do a full or small bust adjustment and there are lines marked on the pattern pieces to help you do this if necessary. I’m a high street size 12 and cut a straight size 4. I made a toile of the bodice to check that the princess style seams would be in the right place but in fact it fitted perfectly without any modifications.
    The instructions are detailed and clear. Lapped (flat fell) seams are used for most of the construction and there is guidance on how to do this, or alternatives. It’s worth doing the lapped seams as, along with reinforced/faced shoulders, it means all the seams are neatly enclosed and top stitched. I followed my preferred method for making the shirt collar but otherwise stuck to the instructions and all worked well. Because of the shirt style collar and lapped seams it’s more an intermediate/advanced beginner make but the project comes together quite quickly. It took me about a day.
    There are lovely roomy pockets too!
    All in all, this one’s a winner in my view.

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  2. Avatar

    4 out of 5 Elevated Daywear with Interesting and Practical Details


    I highly recommend this pattern. Since finishing this dress I have been wearing it constantly and it’s a definite contender for repeat sews. My version is made up in a medium-weight cotton twill which makes for a warm and practical dress but doesn’t gather as well as a lighter weight fabric would. I’ve also taken off a lot from the hem for a more playful length.

    The instructions are clear and logical (although I would switch up one row of gathering threads for the standard three for a better result next time) and the fitting alteration tutorial very helpful!

    See more details and a full review on my blog:

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  3. 2 out of 2 people found this helpful

    5 out of 5 a lovely unusual style of shirt dress


    Contrary to another review of this dress I found the pattern and instructions very thorough and I don’t think I had any particular difficulty in following them. There are plenty of illustrations, as well as extra instructions on how to carry out and FBA or SBA on the unusual-shaped pattern pieces. You could create some really unusual looks for the two distinctly different styles that are included. I used a PDF but it’s also available in printed format in packets that have been individualised by Marilla herself. Maybe not for a beginner dressmaker but certainly a good step up for an ‘improver’. I wrote a full review on my blog which you might find helpful.

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    • jacqueline.davies33

      I love this – it looks amazing on you.

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  4. Avatar

    2 out of 5 Dissatisfied and disappointed!


    I made the view b version of this dress and was disappointed in the instructions which I found very limited. Not enough pics to explain things and have you keep referring to the the other view of dress. Instructions say to attach the tie at the centre front which would put in the bust area which i am sure is not correct. Unless i have it wrong. I can see why few people have made this version. Not sure i will tackle view a. I have been sewing for over 40 years so i am not a novice.

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  5. Avatar

    Isca shirt dress


    This weekend i made my first Marilla Walker pattern using Nani Iro cotton lawn and double gauze from japan. I have to say, i just adore this pattern. such interesting details such as techniques like felled seams and wonderful shaped pattern pieces. the end result is a highly polished yet super comfortable dress (totally a secret pj’s pattern!). i can see this being my new TNT pattern for the summer of 2018. Marilla’s instructions and diagrams are clear and well written. the PDF is a lot to put together however its a lot less tricky and actually fits together perfectly compared to other PDF patterns I’ve used. i defiantly recommend this pattern, especially if you are an advanced beginner wanting to step up your game!

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