Hot! The “Au Revoir” Dress | Adey Lim

The Facts 

Fabric:  Navy blue burn out cotton from chinatown $17 for 2 metres (60 cm width!), poly lining $3
Simplicity Patterns: Simplicity 2591 Threads Magazine Collection 
Year: c. 2009
Notions: Red and white gingham bias tape, invisible zipper, lace applique $5
Time to complete: 6.5 hours
First worn: 16 May 2011
Wear again? Yes, absolutely!

Total Cost: ~$25


This is the week of the UK Sew Weekly meet up and I wished I was saying au revoir at the airport and zooming to London for the event!  While I couldn't be there (I'd have loved to! You girls had so much fun!), the sewing pattern I've used for this week's challenge will soon be reaching Nottingham UK on a swap and return arrangement with a lovely lady named Natasha. So, instead I said au revoir to this darling pattern last Monday after cutting out the pieces. I decided that while I can't be in London, I wanted to dress myself up for this photo shoot as if I was attending the event, with a hat and vintage gloves just for the fun of it!


Prior to sewing this dress, I  have only reused one dress pattern and that was Colette Pattern's macaron. This simplicity pattern is the second one I've used twice and both times for the Sew Weekly Challenge. It was used for the Giddy with Polka Dots dress which quickly became one of my favorite dresses to wear. In fact, the polka dotted version gets worn everytime it has been washed, ironed and placed in my wardrobe! Even before Natasha emailed me, I have been thinking of using this pattern again so I couldn't resist using it one more time before bidding it goodbye temporarily. Do you have any dress pattern you love so much that you keep going back to it? I think I might have found mine, finally! It's a joy to put together and the fit is just perfect.

 Singaporeans are soon bidding goodbye to the Tanjong Pagar railway station, where these photos are taken. Completed in 1931, this feat of engineering was modelled after the grandest railways in Europe and since then it has served numerous trains bound for Malaysia and Thailand, including the renowned Eastern and Oriental Express. With its closure from 1 July 2011, the railway station will be moved to Woodlands, near the Singapore-Malaysian causeway. The main terminus building has been announced as a newest National Monument and to be redeveloped. 

To be frank, I have not visited the train station for the past 20 years, my last train journey was to Kuala Lumpur for my cousin's wedding in my teenage years. But, I remembered being really excited about train journeys. Being on the plane made me most uncomfortable as a child due to motion sickness. Thank God the plane and I get along just fine now but I can never be on a cruise. 


I chose a navy blue burnout fabric and handstitched a lace applique onto the front bodice piece before sewing the rest of the dress pieces together.  I stayed true to view A of the sewing pattern but left the waist tab out for this version, preferring to make this simple and clean.  In fact, you might be wondering what happened to the color red. Well, the only red on my dress is the red and white gingham bias I used to finish the hem. 


The hidden pockets are still my fave bits of the dress design. This version took approximately one and a half hours more to sew as its skirt portion is lined and the lace applique handstitched to position. I love that the fabric is so wide! It took only 2 metres of it to make this dress! Yay! I am definitely gonna pay more attention on fabric width when buying fabrics.

Now I can't wait to see the vintage pattern dear Natasha is sending my way!

Au revoir, à bientôt.




Adey Sew Convert

A former kids' television channel manager turned stay home mum from Singapore, I hated sewing since I attended my first home economic class at the age of 14. In 2007, something miraculous happened when God blessed me with a second pregnancy. I discovered that I was expecting a baby girl. That changed everything. First I went crazy shopping for handmade clothes for her on etsy. Then I decided I needed to make something for her on my own. I was a month from my due date when I took an intensive 8-hour sewing class. In Dec 2008, I made a dress for my princess before she was born and have not stopped sewing since.


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  1. That is an amazing version of that dress. I’ve made three versions of that dress (isn’t it a great pattern?) but it didn’t occur to me to do something as clever as this. I love it!

  2. margueritedesigns

    That’s so pretty! You would have fitted in really well…

  3. Ohhh…we would have loved to have you at the UK meet-up! You would have fit in perfectly in this stunning outfit!!! I really love the burnout fabric you used! It looks absolutely fabulous with the lace applique! Great job! And so much fun to do pattern swaps!!

  4. You absolutely look like a proper lady. – Beautiful fabric and the lace applique is inspired. Must check out this pattern.

  5. You look so pretty, as usual adey. The dress is lovely!

  6. I love this! The lace is a nice touch and I love the little bit of red and white bias tape at the hem.

  7. That is so lovely! And it fits perfectly I hope I can get to this place in my sewing some day.

  8. Adey, I love this dress x2! Your details are impeccable and always so impressive, truly inspirational! Thank you :-)

  9. What a beautiful dress- I love the lace :)

  10. How fun swapping patterns. I can’t wait to see it either.
    Well I love this dress it is very nice and you look like you are off to tea. I love dresses with pockets so this would be a favorite of mine too.

  11. This is beautiful! The lace and the fabric were made for each other :)

  12. Beautiful as usual, Adey! I really love the lace addition.

  13. Oooh you’d have fit in just fine! Although I think we would have had small struggle with where your gorgeous silver shoes would have fit into the circle, my vote is between white and blue!
    The lace applique is a stunning detail, love it!

  14. I’ve never made this dress…but now I might and I need to find an applique like that which are in full abundance at Vogue Fabrics in Evanston, IL. They’re like $2 each. Really! If you go the applique route, I suggest pre-washing to get rid of the sizing and too pre-shrink it too. Dying it is easy-peasy because it’s just all wood fiber! Anyhow, it’s a great easy embellishment to add to just about any garment.
    Anyhow, as a historic preservation nut, I’m sorry to hear that the station will be moved…it’s a shame really, it looses context…Yeah, it’s nice that it’ll be saved, still…

  15. Love the lace applique! Such a delightful addition and it really pops against the blue fabric. Fabulous work!

  16. This is so lovely – the lace bodice looks fabulous! So elegant as always!

  17. Thank you so much Karen! Wow! Three versions! I need to catch up with you.

  18. Thank you so much Marguerite! You gals have started planning for autumn meet up already? Wow!

  19. Thank you so much Debi! If only I could! Yes, indeed it's fun to swap, I just received Natasha's pattern today!

  20. Thanks Jen! This is a fabulous pattern and I think really versatile too, hope you like it too.

  21. Thank you so much Karin! I hope I can someday reach your level in terms of photography. All your photos are just gorgeous!

  22. Thank you so much lizajane! I love your kimono top especially the hot pink lace you dyed, it is just wonderful against the grey! I must try dyeing soon.

  23. Aw, thank you so much Jessie! I still have lots to learn myself and am loving every minute of it.

  24. Thanks so much for the X2 Cathe! So happy that it inspires you.

  25. Thank you Rachel, I'm so delighted that you like them!

  26. Thank you so much for your sweet comment Sue! I just received the pattern from Nottingham today, can't wait to work on it! 

  27. Thank you Amy for the encouraging words, I am thrilled you like the mix of the lace and fabric!

  28. Thank you so much Elizabeth! The lace was a lucky find!

  29. Thank you Kirsty! Hmm… think I will have to make up some blue and white shoe clips to go with those shoes in that case.

  30. Thank you Marybeth! You are so blessed that you have such lovely lace appliques at your fabric store! Mine was a really lucky find on etsy. I have never seen anything like this locally. Thanks for the suggestions, I would really love to try dyeing laces, have never attempted that yet! 

  31. Thanks Meg! Your Red, white and blaine outfit is absolutely adorable!

  32. Thank you Sherry, am so glad you like the dress!

  33. a HAH! bias tape!!! you know, i’m stuck on this challenge and haven’t started yet… the red is killing me. you are quite crafty…

  34. Beautiful! Love the lace detail – you are such an amazing seamstress!

  35. Yes, the bias tape saved the day!  I even thought of lining the dress red but didn't cos of the burn out effect. Mena and Sarah's red are in the accessories so it's pretty flexi. I'm sure you will come up with something brilliant as you usually do!

  36. Thank you babe! I loved that lace too, just had to get it when I saw it! Have a blessed weekend!

  37. I love a go-to pattern and I love the lace applique you have chosen for the front. I think you are an remarkable seamstress. Well done Adey.

  38. Oh gosh, thank you so much for saying that Kazz! I'm in cloud nine!

  39. The Pockets! The Silhouette! Your styling! Everything is just so cute here Adey!

  40. Thanks babe! Love your coat too!