Hot! The “Skip the Bathrobe” Dress

Bathrobe-promo The Facts
Fabric: Polyester/Wool blend from an estate sale: $5
Pattern: Simplicity 4693
Notions: none
Year: c. 1960
Time to complete: About 4 hours
First worn: November 2010
Wear again? Certainly.

As a born and raised Californian, I'm one of those pathetic folks who can barely handle the temperature dipping below 50 degrees. It's not like San Francisco is the warmest place in the country — it's just consistently sort of, well, bleh. While it may not have Summers like everywhere else, its winters are often manageable with a nice heavy sweater. You know, bleh.

A long preamble to say that this week's creation was definitely influenced by the cold spell we're having. Instead of making a special dress for Thanksgiving, I made something for our anniversary weekend away up in Occidental, CA. Because it's even colder there at night, I wanted a dress with (1) longish sleeves (2) thickish fabric (3) a plaid. 

Enter Simplicity 4693 (available in a 34 bust at Etsy). This is the second time I've used this pattern, though I have yet to document my first attempt. The first dress suffers from being a little too long and a little too tight in the bodice. Perhaps some alterations will eventually allow it to make it into The Sew Weekly annals — we'll see.

For this dress, I used an estate sale polyester blend. While the fabric wasn't too heavy to make the gathering of the skirt impossible, a lighter weight fabric would have solved the fullness issue at my hips. In other words, there's a lot of extra junk in that trunk that really ain't there. 

Construction was almost completely straight-forward. The aforementioned gathering? There's a lot of it in the back. So much so that I began questioning whether I did something wrong. Alas, it is just the style. One modification to the dress: I stitched the facing at the neckline so that it looked like it was a trim. Other than that, a very easy pattern to follow.

While it's not the most slimming dress, I do rather like how it turned out. It was quite warm and (almost) compensated for me not packing a coat. It turned out that it was kind of insanely cold by the time we walked to dinner from our hotel and I actually considered wearing the hotel-provided bathrobe that was hanging in our room. Thankfully, my husband talked me out of that fashion faux pas. 



Mena Trott

Mena Trott started The Sew Weekly to document her attempt to sew all of her own clothes in 2010. Since then, she's made over 125 outfits and has way more clothes than she needs.


Comments are closed.

  1. this is beautiful on you@ i love the fabric and the shiloutte!
    great job!

  2. I love that dress. . .and the sewing pattern, the fabric choice, the broach and that adorable little girl at your side.

  3. This is FANTASTIC! It’s one of my favorites so far!! It looks fabulous and I hope some more winter dresses are to come!

  4. I love this dress so very very much! The pairing of gray and orange, the bias plaid on the bias, the gathers into darts..I’m dizzy with lust for it.

  5. oh my goodness! look at that cutie in the corner!

  6. It’s a beautiful dress! I definitely don’t see it as a not-slimming dress, I actually think the proportions are really lovely! Also, the stitching of the facing is really clever and looks great!

  7. Amazing job and what a cute assistant you have!

  8. Very pretty dress – I love your little Mini-me. She is so like you!

  9. I adore the fabric with that dress!

  10. I love the style of this dress and the fabric. Thank you for sharing. I think I will write this pattern number down for future reference.

  11. Those darts with gathers are interesting. Also, did you make a belt?! I’m impressed.
    Oh, and I loved seeing cutie-pie Penelope posing with her hand on her hip. :)

  12. its a really nice dress
    and i think very flattering!

  13. Who can notice the dress with that shinning star next to you? She is very cute and a mini me of you. Oh but the dress is beautiful and I love the belt. Wow your skills are so good. What a wonderful fall/winter fabric.

  14. Loving this dress. You are one clever lady. :) The other illustration on the packet made me think of a Victoria Beckham dress.

  15. hi, that’s really good. Thanks a lot for sharing this dress. Fair lady.

  16. Wow, this is fabulous! One of my favorites of yours so far. I also think it looks very flattering, at least in the picture.
    I also adore the kid. Did you make her yourself? :P

  17. This is one of my favourites! I especially like it because it has sleeves. You look charming in it x

  18. Oh my God this dress is so Perfect! I love everything about it. The silhouette is beautiful and the style is just so flattering. What a wonderful dress!!

  19. I LOVE this one! The fabric is great and the neckline is very flattering. Much more flattering than a robe neckline ;)

  20. I love plaid dresses – it looks great! Super cute little person, too! :)

  21. I love this dress, great fabric and beautiful color.

  22. Adorable! Did you go to Wild Flour Bakery in Freestone? We were jsut there over Thanksgivign weekend. Delicious!