Whatever your day has in store, this frock is designed to deliver! Combining flattering short sleeves with a trapeze style body, this dress has been cut from a relaxed and drapey rayon that packs a punch with florals. In just eight steps, you’ll have cracked concealed zips, inserting sleeves and picture-perfect hems. What’s not to love?
- Fabric, 3m
- Concealed zip, 22in
- Front dress: cut one on the fold
- Back dress: cut one pair
- Sleeves: cut one pair
- Neck binding: cut a bias strip, 5cm x 55cm
- Sleeve binding: cut two bias strips, 5cm x 36cm
- 1.5cm seam allowance used throughout unless otherwise stated.
1 Download and print the pattern from sewmag.co.uk, then follow the cutting guide. Neaten the shoulder seam edges on the front and back pieces. Match, pin and stitch together, right sides facing, then press the seams open. Fold and press in 1cm on either side of the neck bias strip. Open one side of the strip and position it around the neckline. Pin in place, then sew along the fold line.
2 Fold the strip onto the wrong side of the neckline and position the remaining folded edge over the stitching line. Pin and edgestitch in place, sandwiching the raw edge of the neckline inside the bias binding; this process can also be completed by hand slip-stitching. Trim away any excess binding at the centre back edges, then neaten them and the side edges.
3 Lay the back and front pieces together, right sides facing, then match, pin and sew the side seams together. Match the back seam together and stitch from the base to the zip notch, then press the seams open. Fold and press in 1cm on either side of the two sleeve bias strips. Open one side of the bias strip, position across the base of the sleeves, then finish as for the neck binding. Trim away any excess binding, then neaten the underarm edges.
4 Sew a row of gathering stitches around the head of each sleeve, starting from the front notch and finishing at the back. Match, pin and stitch the underarm sleeve seams together, right sides facing, then turn the sleeves right sides out. Pull the gathering threads up slightly, then place each sleeve into the armholes.
5 Match the side and underarm seam of the sleeves together, then match the notch in the centre of the sleeve to the end of the shoulder seam. Adjust the gathers to fit the armholes, then pin and stitch in place. Neaten the armhole seam allowance.
6 Stitch the concealed zip into the back opening using a regular zipper foot or a concealed one. Fold and press the seam allowance along the two sides of the back opening. Open out the seam allowance and, with right sides facing, place the opened zip face down, matching the teeth to the crease line in the seam allowance and pin in place.
7 Thread the zip pull through to the right side at the top of the centre back seam and pull up to close. Stitch the top of the zip over the ends of the neck binding, fold under the ends of the zip and hand-sew in place. Overlock the base of the dress, then fold and machine-stitch a 1cm hem.