Dreaming of…secret patchwork dresses

And 2015 shall forever be remembered as the year of successful stash busting πŸ™‚

I’ve attempted this before, trying to work through the mounds of fabric that I already have, but I’ve always been tempted back over to the dark side by a pretty floral or an excellent bargain.


This year, the only fabric I have bought has been for specific commissions. In fact, last time I went fabric shopping, I picked up a few bolts for myself…and then put them back down 10 minutes later. Now that took will power!

So it came that I ‘needed’ a new dress for a friends hen night out last month. I looked at my stash, saw nothing appropriate and headed to my laptop to start searching for something pretty. Half way down the stairs I gave myself a quick talking to and headed back to peruse my mountain of material! And lo and behold, I found something that would work.



This fabric has been in my sewing room for over a year. I bought it at a vintage fair in Cardiff last summer. It was an odd shape of fabric, only about 1.5m and one end had a big cut out, but I managed to squeeze New Look 6208 out of it.


I had to do some creative pattern placement, making sure that the CF fold was in the middle of a pattern repeat and that the princess seams were symmetrical.



Aside from that I couldn’t do much pattern matching. The skirt front wasn’t too bad, but by the time it came to cutting out the back skirt panel, I had reached the weird cut out section in the fabric and couldn’t get the pattern piece to fit. 😦

I ended up piecing together a few squares. You can’t see this from the outside as I did try to pattern match here, but the eagle eyed amongst you may have noticed that the pattern on the back is upside down compared to the front, but it was the only way to fit it all out of the fabric. I think I quite like that the dress has some secret patchwork action going on – it’s one of those things that you’d only have on a (hastily made) handmade dress!



Spot the secret seam!

Spot the secret seam!

This pattern in general was great as a quick and easy make with not too much fabric.



For a big 4 pattern, I was actually really impressed with the fit straight out of the packet. I picked a size based on the finished garment measurements and I think it helped that the back was open, so there was actually more options to pull it in at the end if needs be, but it didn’t even need that.


The dress is unlined and finished with bias binding around the edges, which is perfect for a cool summer dress.




I think if I made it again, I might line the bodice as I don’t like the seams all showing inside, and I’d probably add in seam pockets, but apart from that, I think it’s a pretty successful stash busting make!




I’m not sure why, but I felt like this dress worked well with plaits – hence the Heidi hairstyle. Martin says I looked ridiculous, but I thought it was fun for these photos πŸ™‚



32 thoughts on “Dreaming of…secret patchwork dresses

  1. Stunning! That fabric is gorgeous – I’m glad it got out of the stash and made into a dress:) Well done on not buying fabric – I do want to use up my stash fabric, but I’ve not been too successful so far…

  2. Love the dress and the hairstyle. πŸ™‚ You look fabulous. Great save with piecing it together. I think since the pattern is so busy only sewists will really notice anything, even with the front and back running in different directions. It’s a gorgeous dress and the back detail is awesome.

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