Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Perfect Pattern Parcel: The Staple Dress

I couldn't stop at just one pattern from the Perfect Pattern Parcel!  Such great patterns and such a great cause.... Get yourself on the Pattern Parcel train before it leaves the station!

Here's my version of April Rhodes' Staple Dress in Anna Maria Horner voile (Coreopsis in raspberry).

You can get the Staple Dress as part of Perfect Pattern Parcel #3, which includes:

Poppy Tunic by Make it Perfect
Water Bottle Tote by Radiant Home Studio
Jorna Tank Dress by Jenna Brand
Staple Dress by April Rhodes
Bombshell Swimsuit by Closet Case Files

Bonus Pattern:
Choose a price of $28 or greater for Parcel #3 and you will automatically also be sent the Bonus Pattern, Prefontaine Shorts for Women by Made with Moxie.

Pattern Parcel #3
Here at Perfect Pattern Parcel, we believe in supporting independent pattern designers. It’s our opinion that indie patterns are just, well, better than big box patterns, and we’re pretty sure our customers think so too. So, we allow customers to show their support in naming their own price for each Parcel.  We also encourage customers to allocate part of their Parcel price to the charity Donorschoose.org in order to help classrooms in need. Pattern Parcel donates all profits after expenses from Parcel sales to the charity as well. Together we've raised almost $4,500 towards eliminating educational inequality.

Here's my experience with April Rhodes' Staple Dress!:

The Staple Dress reminded me a lot of another dress pattern I've used many times, Burdastyle's Anda dress, but with much nicer lines (particularly the neckline) and exponentially better instructions (I struggle with Burdastyle's minimalist directions).  It's a pullover-style, scoop neck dress fitted at the waist with elastic, with options for a drop or straight hem.  I think that this dress would be perfect for a beginner sewist/seamstress both because of the great instructions and also because it has neither zipper nor buttons to fiddle with.  

Here are my construction notes:

My measurements placed me between two sizes, but I didn't want to be swimming in the final dress, so I made the smaller size and sewed it with a 3/8" seam allowance instead of the 5/8" the pattern suggests.

I was being a bit lazy, so I used some coordinating store-bought bias tape for the neckline and armholes rather than cutting them out of self-fabric (although I think that would have been the better choice!).  And I continue to struggle with shirring, despite my best efforts, so I used 1/4" elastic at the waist, using a bias tape casing that I sewed on the inside of the dress.

This dress is such quick and simple sew!  It would work well with so many different fabrics, particularly fabric with large prints since the dress front and back are each one large piece with no darts.  My voile Staple dress is light and super comfortable, but I think it would also look amazing in a flowier fabric... rayon challis next time, perhaps? Yes, I think so.  I could definitely see this dress becoming a staple in my handmade wardrobe (har har, did ya see what I did there?)!

Interested in learning more about the Perfect Pattern Parcel patterns?  Check out all of the other talented bloggers who have been sewing up amazing versions of these patterns:

Parcel #3 Inspiration Tour Schedule:

Friday, May 30 Sew Busy Lizzy || Pienkel || SeamstressErin

Saturday, May 31 Design By Lindsay || the Brodrick design studio || Cookin' and Craftin'

Sunday, June 1 Diary of a Chainstitcher || a happy stitch || Disaster in a Dress || sew Amy sew

'So, Zo... What do you know?'

Sunday, June 8 oonaballoona || A Stitching Odyssey || Sew Charleston

Monday, June 9 Sew Sweetness || True Bias || Ozzy Blackbeard

Tuesday, June 10 Welcome to the Mouse House || Sew Caroline || Adventures in Dressmaking

Wednesday, June 11 Peneloping || YoSaMi || sewVery

Thursday, June 12 la inglesita || La Pantigana || Sanae Ishida

Friday, June 13 Seamster Sewing Patterns || Paunnet


  1. Nice! The red looks great on you!

    1. Thanks!! I seem to be gravitating towards reds these days, although I am a green girl at heart.

  2. It looks great, Meg! Someone on the tour suggested that if you wind your elastic thread on the bobbin with a little more stretch in it that it helps the shirring. Maybe try that?

    1. I totally need to give it another try... practice makes perfect, right?

  3. I am shirring-challenged, too, so I think your elastic idea is a good one. The dress is amazing. It is really pretty on you.

    I would love for you to share in my new linky party.


    1. Thanks!! Yeah, I need to give shirring another go, but elastic is a good substitute in the meantime!

  4. What a great dress and I really like the elastic casing option too. Why is bias binding so annoying to make?! I wish we had better all-cotton options at at the store. It would make things a lot easier :) I have the same voile and I was wondering if you felt it needed a lining or if it's opaque enough the way it is. Thanks!

    1. I know, right? I make it when necessary, but sometimes use the store-bought stuff when I'm lazy or don't have quite enough fabric. Re: voile sheerness... I think it is teetering on the edge of too sheer on the bottom half. The top is fine. I'm not worried about it for this project, but might consider lining the skirt if I were to make another dress from it, particular in a lighter color.

    2. Thanks for the reply! I'll have to think about a good lining... :)