You’re bound to be the belle of the ball in this picture-perfect maxi dress! The classy design made by Posner and Posner features a deep V-neckline, side slit, and a cinched-in waist, plus it will have you mastering the art of darts, linings, facings and fastenings.
- Fabric, 3.5m (150cm)
- Lining, 1m
- Fusible interfacing, 25cm
- Small buttons, 4
- Press stud
- Front: cut one on the fold
- Front bodice: cut two in fabric and lining
- Front facing: cut two in fabric and interfacing
- Back: cut two on the cutting line
- Back bodice: cut two in fabric and lining
- Back facing: cut two in fabric and interfacing
- Gathered band: cut one front on the fold and two back on the cutting line
- Midriff band: cut one front on the fold and one in lining; cut two back on the cutting line and two in lining
- Back button facing: cut one
- Sleeve: cut two
- 1.5cm seam allowance used throughout, unless otherwise stated.
1 Download the pattern, then print out and follow the cutting guide. Attach fusible interfacing to the front and back facings, then join at the shoulder edge. Press the seam and neaten the outside edge of each facing. Make darts in the front and lining bodice, then press towards the side edge. Create darts in the fabric and lining back bodice, then press towards the centre back.
2 Join the fabric and lining front bodice and back bodice pieces at the shoulder seam, then press open. With wrong sides together, matching the notches and shoulder seams, stitch the bodice and the lining together around the neck edge. Sew the fabric bodice and the lining together at the armhole edge, but stop 2cm from the side seam edge on the front and back.
3 Sew the facing to each bodice neck edge. Trim the seam, clip the curves and turn the facing to the wrong side of each bodice. Understitch the facing, then overlap the left and right bodice, matching up the centre front line, and sew close to the edge.
4 Gather the side edges of the front band and place it on top of the front midriff band; the wrong side of the gathered band should be facing the right side of the midriff one. Evenly space the gathers and sew them to the side seam edge on the front midriff band. Gather the side edges of the back and centre back edge of the gathered bands, then place it on top of the back midriff.
5 Sew the gathers to the side seam and centre back edges of the back midriff band. Stitch the front and back midriff close to the top and bottom edges. With right sides together and matching the notches and edges, sew the midriff bands to the bottom edge of the front and back bodice, then press the seam downwards.
6 With right sides together, matching the notches and making sure the midriff seam is aligned, stitch the back and front bodice together at the side seams, then press open. With right sides together and matching the notches, sew the back and front bodice lining together at the side seams. Press the seam open and position it so the right side of the lining is facing outwards, covering the wrong side of the bodice. Finish off the stitching at the armhole edge.
7 Sew the back and front lining midriff bands together at the side seam and press open. Position the lining midriff band over the bodice so the right side of the lining is facing the wrong side of the bodice with the raw edges level. Stitch the lining to the bodice through all the layers; sew over the stitching line where you joined the bands to the bodice, then press the lining band downwards.
8 Stitch the underarm seams of the sleeves, then trim, neaten and press the edge. Insert each sleeve, matching the front and back notches and the top shoulder marks. Ease to fit and stitch, then trim, neaten and press the edge. Sew the centre back seam up to the mark, then neaten the edges and press open.
9 Stitch the right side seam of the skirt, then neaten the edge and press open. Sew the left side seam of the skirt to the slit opening mark. Neaten the edge and press open, then press the edges of the open part to the wrong side along the seam line. Topstitch the turning in place.
10 Stitch a gathering thread around the top of the skirt. Making sure the side seams of the bodice and skirt are aligned and the notches matched, fit the gathered edge of the skirt to the bodice and sew, keeping the edge of the lining band away from the stitching. Press the seam allowance towards the bodice. Fold the raw edge of the lining band under, then position it over the top of the seam and hand-stitch.
11 For the rouleau button loops, cut a bias strip, 3cm x 35cm. Fold in half lengthwise and press. Sew the strip with a narrow seam and trim the excess fabric. Turn the strip using a rouleau hook and cut into five equal sections. At the centre back, position the button loops along the edge with each level in line with the edge of the centre back.
12 Stitch the loops on the seam line. Turn the seam allowance towards the wrong side so the loops are facing the buttons. Topstitch or handsew the centre back to secure the loops. Fold the edge of the back bodice lining over the seam allowance and the edges of the loops, then hand-stitch.
13 Fold the back button facing in half, wrong sides together. Sew across the top and bottom, 1.5cm away from the raw edge, then turn to the right side and press. Position the facing over the button side of the centre back and stitch in place through one side of the facing. On the wrong side of the bodice, turn the other side of the facing under and hand-stitch so that the raw edges are covered. Attach the buttons and sew a press stud onto the facing at the top of the skirt. Hem the edge of the sleeves and skirt. shoulder seams, stitch the bodice and the lining together around the neck edge. Sew the fabric bodice and the lining together at the armhole edge, but stop 2cm from the side seam edge on the front and back.