Hot! The “Bookworm” Dress

The Facts

Fabric: about 2.5 metres of some woven blend, $4 from Fabric-a-brac and a bit of navy lining from my stash
Pattern: Style 2382
Year: 1978
Notions: none!
Time to complete: 4 hours
First worn: about 5 mins after I made it, for a walk around the zoo
Wear again? definitely
Bump: 26 weeks

Total cost: $4

Ok, I admit it. I’ve used the exact same dress for inspiration as what I did for last year’s Sew Weekly TV character inspired challenge. What can I say? It just calls to me, for some reason! (Possibly also because I don’t tend to watch TV, so I fall back on old shows I used to watch for these challenges.)

So, what dress was it? One that Willow wore in Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I just heart her geeky bookworm style, yes indeed. Here’s the dress I got inspired by:

A nice, plain plaid pinafore.

So what did I make? A nice, plain plaid pinafore, like so:

I picked this fabric up a few weeks ago at Fabric-a-brac, a fundraiser for the local hospice where crafty people sell fabric and sewing stuff to other crafty people. When I spotted it, I decided straight away that it was destined to become another version of Style 2382. Sure, I made this same pattern up a couple of months ago but I’ve worn that dress so much, and found it so comfortable, that I wanted to make it up again.

I love this pattern – it’s nice and fast to make up, very comfy to wear, and I figure I can wear this post-pregnancy as well with a belt around the waist. No notions needed either – it just slips on over your head. (The only bit that took a while was the hand stitching on the inside, otherwise it would have been a three hour dress.)

Why the ‘Bookworm’ dress? Well, Willow is a bit of a bookworm, and so am I. Especially the last few months – I’ve been reading a couple of books a week, not the best way to achieve things but oh well! I suspect I’ll read more in the future, curled up on the couch with a blanket and a cat (or two) in this dress. Winter is the perfect time for reading, after all.

As soon as I’d finished it, Steve and I went for a wander around the zoo. Bright sunny winter day – good time to go look at cute animals! They’ve been doing up the zoo here for a while, and every time we go there are new things to see. This jeep is near the African section, so I thought I’d sit in it, like many children have probably done before me. (I’m sure there was a jeep in at least one Buffy episode, wasn’t there?!?)



Kat stumbled upon The Sew Weekly at the end of 2010. Inspired by Mena's creations and dedication to sewing each week, Kat stitched along with all the weekly themes for 2011. Through The Sew Weekly and the girls who contribute to it, she deepened her passion for vintage styles and started amassing a large collection of vintage patterns. Now she needs an excuse to try using them all.


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  1. Very nice, and good for winter layering. I remember that toward the last few months of my pregnancies, my navel started to hurt so much that I only wore loose dresses like this. I love the fact that you’re using your Mum’s old maternity pattern.

    And yeah, there must have been jeeps in Season 4 with that whole Initiative thing.

    • Thanks Vicki. :-)

      I’ve been only able to wear dresses for most of the pregnancy so far – dratted super-sensitive belly! Luckily I have a marked preference for dresses anyway. ;-)

  2. Adorable and love the pictures at the zoo. The fabric is really beautiful.

  3. I really love that fabric and especially like that you wore your boots. I was actually thinking of making a dress like this for next week’s challenge but changed my mind. I think it may look better with a baby bump.

  4. Cordelia – Willow, nice dress. Good to know you’ve seen the softer side of Sears.
    Willow – Uh, oh, well, my mom picked it out.

    This dress was in the pilot, but the WB made them change Willow’s look because that outfit was considered too nerdy. So they made her wardrobe “quirky” instead. Remember all those weird sweaters? And here you are making a version of it! What do those damn TV executives know anyways.

    (Um… I may be a giganto Buffy nerd :-)

    • Tee hee, I love that you’re a huge Buffy fan! Such an awesome series….. (Although I’ve never managed to understand what the fuss was about Angel. Spike was far more interesting.)

  5. Love it! I think every girl nerd has a special thing for Willow. Awesome job recreating her look to accommodate the bump!

  6. You are looking fantastic…Love your dress and I went back and looked at last years.. It was adorable too..Happy sewing.

  7. Cute. I love how your belting over the bump. I was a fan of Willow as well.

  8. Mmmm…I love tartan. And it’s just a wonderful warming fabric for winter, isn’t it?

    • Tartan + winter = made for each other. I’m fighting a battle with myself not to wear this every day this week with the cold weather!

  9. This is one of my favorite outfits of yours. I love the fit and how it flatters your pregnancy. Your photoshoot is very pleasing and enjoyable. If your photographer is anything like mine, they’re starting to do a better job after all these weeks of practice. ;)

    • Thanks Barbara! (Although I think I only got decent photos from my photographer this week because I took him to the zoo. Bribery of sorts! ;-)

  10. Great photos this week Kat, and you are blooming with health, your bump is so neat! Love the dress and the inspiration x

  11. When your onto a good thing.. why stop at one! Great dress Kat. You’re looking great. Love the bias on the yoke and that there’s a centred navy diamond.

  12. Bump 26 weeks? Love it. My god that is going so fast. Just loving seeing you bloom each time you submit. You look gorgeous and your dress is just perfect, you’ll get loads of wear from this in the coming months. So what books have you been reading? I wish I could sit and read for a whole week, no interruptions that would be heavenly. Awesome photos this week Kat.

  13. This is adorable! It looks positively perfect for curling up with a good book.

  14. No way can that be described as a plain pinafore, it’s gorgeous and looks so comfy. Those boots are to die for too. I love Buffy, and Willow is such an interesting character, so witty (sometimes without knowing it) and I love the 2 evil versions of Willow too.

  15. That plaid makes an adorable pinafore… very nice. That pattern makes a great uniform for these bun-in-the-oven months.