Perfect for sauntering through sun-soaked back streets and Parisian-style flea markets, the Nova dress by Amanda Walker will keep you cool while looking effortlessly glamorous. The pattern offers a classic halterneck which can be tied to suit you, topped off with a delicate frill across the top which is mirrored on the back. Trust us, it’s a must-pack for your suitcase!
- Fabric, 3m (150cm)
- Elastic, 2.5cm wide
- 1.5cm seam allowance used throughout, except for the lower frill edges where 5mm is used.
- Front: cut one on the fold
- Back: cut one on the fold with the top section removed
- Front frill: cut two on the fold
- Back frill: cut two on the fold
- Neck tie: cut two
- Neck tie channel: cut one
- Elastic casing: cut one
Download and cut out the pattern. Neaten the edges of the side seam on the front and back, then position the pieces together, right sides facing. Match, pin and stitch the side seams together, then press the seam allowances open.
Divide the frills into two sets; one will become the lining. Pin and sew the side seams of the front and back frills, then press the seams open. Match the two frills together, right sides facing, then pin around the base of the frill and stitch together with a 5mm seam allowance. Turn one frill to the right side, then tease out the seams and press flat.
Position the front part of the frill at the top, on the back of the dress front, matching the side seams. Stitch together from the side seam to either side of the beginning of the halterneck, miss the top edge and stitch down to the opposite side seam. Trim the seam allowance by half, then clip the seam allowance around the curves. Turn the frill over to the right side of the dress; the raw seam will be hidden behind the frill.
Unpick 1.5cm at the top of each side seam, position the back part of the frill to the right side of the back of the dress and sew; the elastic casing can now be stitched in place. Press the seam allowance on both sides of the strip. Position one edge on top of the frill stitching line, covering the raw edges by the strip. Turn in both ends of the strip and edgestitch both sides in place, leaving the ends open.
Thread the elastic through the casing and pull it up so it fits comfortably across the back. Secure both ends of the elastic to the ends of the casing. Make two lines of gathering stitch at the centre top of the front dress through all the layers, then pull up the stitches tightly. Sew the two side edges of the tie channel to make a tube, turn to the right side and centre the seam, then press flat.
Turn the tube back to the wrong side and slip over the gathering stitches. Pull the tube right down so that the raw edges of the gathered area are level with the exiting end of the tube, making sure that the seam of the tube will end up on the wrong side. Sew across, then pull the tube up and over the gathered seam line, turning it to the right side.
Fold and press in 1.5cm on the open end of the tube, then fold in half, matching the folded edge to the gathered seam line; hand slip-stitch in place to form the channel for the neck tie. Make the tie by stitching the two straight ends of the tie together and folding it in half, right sides facing.
Stitch from one pointed end to the other leaving a 5cm gap in the centre. Trim the bulk from the corners and turn the tie to the right side through the gap in the stitching line. Tease out the corners and the seams and press flat, then hand slip-stitch the gap closed. The tie can now be threaded through the channel. Neaten around the base of the dress, turn up a 2cm hem and sew in place to secure.