Hot! MTL: Call Me Dottie Dress

Today's Make This Look is another reader request, this time from Rowena. She writes:

You're to blame for this one – it was featured as one of the black and white dresses a week or so ago! Love the blog!

While this dress looks simple enough to duplicate, I was surprised by how few surplice fronts are out there in modern patterns. With a little alteration, I think this dress could turn out to be quite like the original inspiration.

Thanks, Rowena!

Original Inspiration



  • Cut the bodice piece about 2" shorter (keeping in mind seam allowance). Cut out the piece you just removed out of the black broadcloth, once again keeping in mind that you'll be stitching the two pieces together.
  • Do the same to the skirt, to follow the curve of the original inspiration.
  • Cuff the sleeves with the same black fabric (or simply add the black as contrast to the ends)
  • Use self-covered fabric buttons to blend in seamlessly with the prints.
  • Skip the tie belt and instead use a belt buckle.


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.

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  1. I love these mtl posts. I don’t see an easy way to find the previous ones in a category…that would be helpful if we want to come back to something we have seen. There are several I am contemplating.