The “Cutting the Queue” Dress

The Facts

Fabric:  2 yards quilting cotton, $9 (for 3) from Hancock, 3/4 yard sheermist batiste from stash
Pattern:  Simplicity 2550, $1?
Year:  2009 (out-of-print)
Notions:  invisible zipper, $1
Time to complete:  ~4 hours after way too much time spent drafting
First worn:  March 26, to a local park
Wear again?  Yes
Total cost:  ~$11
This wasn’t the dress I planned for this week but, when I wasn’t over the moon with my Trudy dress, I set off to the fabric store to look for something like this floral Betty shift.  Of course, there wasn’t a suitable fabric to be found but, this odd little print did catch my eye and it screamed that it didn’t want to be a quilt, it wanted to be a dress.  So, I rescued 3 yards of it, thinking I could squeeze an extra dress into my queue.  However, we agreed none of my patterns were ideal so, I decided to tweak one.

First, I changed the neckline. Then, the front pleats had to go. At a bit of a loss for how exactly to do that, I got sidetracked drafting my first skirt block. At this point, I thought the pattern was good to go, so I cut out my fabric. Just as I was about to sew, I decided to lower the back of the neckline into a vee. So, basically, by the time I was done “tweaking,” the only original bits were the sleeves.

Now, I was pleased with my design but, I was behind schedule. Then, I realized this dress is actually a combo of two of Pantone’s spring colors, tangerine and margherita. How lucky! I hadn’t considered the orange for the challenge because I can’t wear it well but, the cooler green seems to make it possible.

The dress whipped together quite well and, while I was terrified of the potential for disaster during construction, I was thrilled with the result!  I really like the changes I made to it and I think it fits rather well.  I’m sure I’ll make another tweak or two but, I think I’ve found my go-to sheath pattern.  Even better?  Brandon just loves it and told me I should make it up in as many fabrics as I want!

So, what color to make next…?  No, no must focus…must get back to the queue…

Author

Jennifer

Jennifer took up sewing in 2008 as a new hobby after a move. Now, with endless ideas running through her head, she's making an effort to fill hers and her fiance's closets with custom clothing.

25 Comments

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  1. way to nice to be a quilt. Great fit

  2. This dress is gorgeous and perfect fit on you…!

  3. Very cute! I like the alterations you made to the pattern. It’s always great when a pattern is re-workable.

  4. That dress is gorgeous. I can’t believe it looks that good on you when the only original bit was the sleeves….I wish I had your talent for tweaking! Lovely, lovely colours. If this dress was for sale in shops I’d be crossing my fingers they had it in my size.

  5. I love this dress! The neckline is great and it looks so good on you! If you feel like going into business making this dress over and over again, let me know and I’ll be your first customer! :)

  6. I have that pattern, and I never could make it fit right. You did a wonderful job of making it what you wanted it to be. The colors and the pattern are especially fun and springy. A great look on you. Definitely make more.

    • Thank you, Barbara! I expect to have quite a few of these by the end of summer. I’m actually sneaking in a purple one right now. I’m sorry the pattern didn’t work for you. Maybe you could redraft the ill-fitting areas too? I think the cowl option would look lovely on you!

  7. This is gorgeous, and I am so impressed by your tweaking! You have to make more.

  8. This is great–the fit and the fabric. I love your photos in the park, too–so sunny and happy.

  9. Lovely! The colors are so perfect for Spring, and it fits you very well! I say it’s a perfect sheath pattern for you – well done!

  10. You look very pretty in this dress and I love the two colors together! Nice work!

  11. What a beautiful dress and the coors are so fun to wear for spring. I think the next color could be violet or lavender.

    • Thank you, Krista!! I actually have a red-violet one nearly finished. I like the idea of lavender too. Thanks for the suggestion!

  12. Hooray for go-to-patterns and surprisingly perfect quilting cotton prints! WONDERFUL work, Jennifer. You are the cutest in this dress!