Would you like to see a new dress?

by Erin on December 8, 2013

I hope so, because I have one:

folklore dress

This is the bodice from my old friend Simplicity 1577, sans collar — I finally traced the darn thing off and even added an inch to the length. I don’t know why, but I seem to have more length from my shoulder-to-waist than previously. (Is that even possible? I thought I was supposed to be shrinking with age.) The skirt is from that “W3” pattern from a million years ago.

Here’s the back:

folklore dress back

Here’s the sleeve binding (the hem facing is the same color):

folklore dress sleeve binding

And the zipper, which is 1) terrible and 2) on the wrong side! I was pretty sick with the flu over Thanksgiving but couldn’t face the thought of a four-day weekend with no sewing in it … but people, I have to tell you: do NOT operate sewing patterns while under the influence of cold medicine.

folklore dress bad zipper

Luckily it doesn’t affect the wearability of the dress, I just have had one or two bad moments where I couldn’t figure out why something was off. Perhaps I’ll switch up my zipper sides from now on, just to give myself a little cognitive agility? (Probably not.)

This fabric was from Superbuzzy — I bought it last spring, right as it got a little too warm for a deep teal dress. But now the weather is perfect, and it also has a little bit of a Christmassy feel, I think.

Sorry for the blog hiatus — I still need to move this blog to a new host, as it’s starting to get so large that my current host is groaning. But I should be able to squeeze a post or two in while I’m packing the boxes!

{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

peppermintpenguin December 8, 2013 at 5:18 pm

do we want to see a new dress? silly question, of course we do!

and such a nice pretty dress with good use of a border too.


Angela December 8, 2013 at 6:05 pm

Love the dresses – and I really enjoyed your book “The Secret Lives of Dresses”. So sweet, and makes me wish I had such a store nearby!


Karen December 8, 2013 at 6:06 pm

Beautiful dress. Love the fabric. Went straight to Super Buzzy to try to order. They were out of the border print, but I got the stripe. :) btw, I always get the zipper on the wrong side too.


Susan December 8, 2013 at 11:02 pm



Kate December 9, 2013 at 1:34 am

Love it in that fabric, I just bought this pattern on ebay, I can not wait to make it up!


Silver December 9, 2013 at 9:14 am

That is SO pretty, and the border print across the shoulders/neckline as well looks lovely – who’d even notice the zip with so much delightfulness going on in the fabric?


Liz December 9, 2013 at 1:51 pm

Is there anyone out there who has an extra pattern they want to sell?
This is JUST the dress I’ve been dreaming about. If so, email me at
elizabethannaharris at gmail dot com


erica December 9, 2013 at 7:59 pm

glad to see you “back”


Cel December 9, 2013 at 8:36 pm



Connie December 9, 2013 at 11:18 pm

Love your pattern placement on this dress. Sweet!


kathleen December 10, 2013 at 5:46 pm

Lovely dress! I can’t tell you how many times I have put a zxipper on the wrong side. It’s confusing to me when it is inside out, you’d think I’d make a note for myself, but that would be logical.


Liz December 11, 2013 at 2:35 pm

This dress is exactly what I’d like to learn how to make– I am fairly new to dressmaking so something that is described as ‘easy’ is what I’m looking for. I’ve been searching around for the Simplicity 1577 pattern but no one seems to have it available. Can you recommend a pattern that is similar? Also, I noticed that the skirt is from a separate pattern– can you explain what modifications one would need to make in order for it to appear more ‘dirndly’ and less box pleaty?

Thanks, Liz


Ann V. December 11, 2013 at 10:49 pm

It’s SO pretty! What a great way to use a bordered fabric.


Wendy December 15, 2013 at 6:58 pm

Hi Erin,
I was wondering – when you use vintage patterns, do you cut the pattern? I one blogger I read clearly states she NEVER cuts the pattern; only traces. I recently used my first vintage pattern. When I pulled the sheets of tissue out of the envelope, they seemed to whisper, “Help me to finally for fill my destiny from 65 years ago. Cut me.” And I did. Only the pieces I did not need to modify. I was surprised at what a weighty decision it was to cut or not cut.
Glad to see you are back posting.


cal December 18, 2013 at 1:41 am

What a beautiful fabric, and very well positioning of border print.


J January 24, 2014 at 4:12 pm

Absolutely love the dress I am 6ft so it would be really short on me but love the design


John February 1, 2014 at 6:15 pm

Very cool design….a very timeless design too. Found you when I bought The Peach Keeper by Sarah Addison Allen. Will be reading and reviewing ‘The Secret Lives of Dresses’ on my blog over February. Thanks Erin for a great blog!


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