Hot! The “Claret with a T” Dress

The Facts

  • Fabric: 3.5 yds linen look (stash, I have no idea what I paid originally so I’m calling it $0)
  • Pattern: New Look 6862 (stash, used before)
  • Year: 2009
  • Notions: thread, 24″ white zipper (stash)
  • Time to complete: 5 hours
  • First worn:
  • Wear again?: Yes
  • Total price: $0

I’ve made this pattern once before (a shorter version with ruffles at the armholes and hem) for Easter two years ago, loved the fit, and got many nice compliments. However, I should have tried on that dress again before constructing the new one, because on the new one the armholes come down a little low. After trying on the first dress (after noticing the armholes on the pink one) I see that I had the same issue before. I could have fixed this during construction this time around if I’d bothered to check the fit. Der. Lesson learned.

For this dress I did the full length version with no ruffles. All but one of the long seams in this pattern can easily be done as French seams, which keeps them very neat and durable. Once I wore this for a full day, I realized that the bodice really is too big altogether and the last time I made this dress I was at least 10-15 pounds heavier. But it shouldn’t be too hard to take it in a bit.

I had originally planned to use this fabric for a jacket to go with an off-white skirt and mulberry top, but when I felt its weight again and saw that the white and pink didn’t quite match either the skirt or the top, I decided it would really have a better life as a dress. I have a feeling it will be in high rotation during this unbelievably warm spring.

These photos were taken at Frederik Mejier Gardens in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where I met up with my in-laws to drop off my son and The English Inn in Eaton Rapids, Michigan, where my husband and I spent Thursday night. Lovely, isn’t it?

As this was the only fabric in my stash that was part of the Pantone Spring 2012 color palette, I didn’t really have a choice but to go with the color “claret,” which, by the way, I found is pronounced with the “t” and not without as you might think. It is not a French word, but a British English word, and dropping the “t” is what is called hyperforeignism. So “claret” rhymes with “parrot.” So there’s your fancy little factoid to impress bore your friends. :)


Erin Bartels

Erin is a copywriter by day, a novelist by night, and a wife, mother, dressmaker, quilter, zoo docent, painter, poet, and photographer in between. She only gets paid for the copywriting.


Comments are closed.

  1. Beautiful dress! I love the color. And thanks for the tid-bit on the pronunciation. Oh and the place you stayed at looks gorgeous! What a nice little getaway!

  2. “Hyperforeignism” is a great word! Your clareT dress is awesome :)

  3. Ha ha! Unlike Merlot, in which the T is silent. Lovely dress.

  4. I love that colour – exactly the type of thing I would have chosen for a dress for me!

  5. Perfect outfit for swanning around a countryside manor. Looks good.

  6. Very nice! It looks so flowy and comfortable. Love the pic in the flowers, you look very pretty.

  7. Hey Erin, love the detail on the neckline, it’s very flattering. Perfect dress for the hot summers coming our way.

  8. That is a darling print! You’ve inspired me to finally make a dress for the upcoming challenge :)

  9. Great casual dress, she looks very comfy.

  10. HA! Thanks for the factoid! The dress is marvelous, by the way – it’s a great color on you!