The annual event is back and we hope you love the sundress theme as much as we do. To read more about this sewing community challenge, the rules and list of sponsors please visit Sarah’s blog here.
Would you like to join but unsure which pattern to pick? Never fear, your sewtogether team is here with our top pattern picks.
Suzy @sewing_in_spain here to give you my top sundress pattern tips.
If you´re anything like me, over the last year you have sewn up all the basics and loungewear things you need, and you are eager for a bit of light-hearted and warm weather sewing. Enter the #sewtogetherforsummer sundress challenge! So here is my selection for fun in the sun dresses…albeit in your own back garden.
The Annie Dress, by Tessuti Fabrics, is a flattering and comfortable dress for hot weather. It has a front and back yoke with separate side panels, which is great for using accent fabrics or colour blocking. When I made this a couple of years ago, I pieced scraps to make the yokes. The dress is gently gathered below the yoke and has sewn in pockets.
Sew Over It has two lovely sundresses. The Rosie Dress is vintage inspired with a fitted bodice and full skirt. There are two variations: wider straps with a collar, which looks great in a contrast fabric, or a sweetheart neckline and rouleau straps. 20% discount code is available until 27/04/2021, enter sewtogetherrosie at the checkout.
The other sundress from Sew Over It is the Siena Dress, which is available as part of the Summer Dreaming ebook. I love the button front and the shirred back. Here is one I made in gingham for a friend.
Next up is the Londsdale Dress by Sewaholic. This is pattern has been around for many years, but I think the way the straps are twisted at the front, then tied in a bow at the back, is totally original. The full skirt and front pockets are icing on the cake.
Chalk and Notch has a very on trend sundress: the Marcel Dress. Fitted on the high bust, with flat front and back panels and those dramatic gathered tiers on the sides. Just perfect for wafting around in warm weather. There is also a Mini Marcel pattern available, so you can pair with your mini me. Fabrics with a good drape would be best for this pattern, for example viscose, tencel, but if you want a more structured look, lightweight linen and cotton would create an amazing silhouette. 15% discount is available until 28/04/2021, enter sewtogetherforsummer at the checkout.
I´m a big fan of Sewhouse Seven patterns and one of Peggy´s early patterns would be great for the challenge – The Rose City Halter Dress. This is such a timeless classic. It has a fitted halter neck bodice, which is not too revealing, and the skirt comes in a gathered version and an A-line version with pockets. This pattern is great for linens and cottons….even some of those stiffer cottons lurking in the stash.
For a more relaxed feel, Sewhouse Seven also has the Underwood Tank Dress, which is suitable for knit fabrics. Fitted through the bust, the dress drapes into an elegant A-line. The back scoops down, but still covers the bra line. This dress makes a great cover up, but could also be dressed up for the evening. Drapey knits are best for this pattern, such as bamboo jersey. 20% discount is available until 30/04/2021, enter summer21 at the checkout.
Over to Sarah (www.sewsarahsmith.com)
McCalls M8091 is similarish in style to the Closet Core Patterns ‘Fiona’ Dress, this too features a front placket and patch pockets. However, it also has the option for shoulder ties or to be completely strapless. I’d say this would be an interesting intermediate sew; great if you love topstitching (I do!) and aren’t completely terrified of buttonholes (and if you are, perhaps read THIS POST). Suitable for denim, twill, chambray, cotton blends.
Cashmerette ‘Holyoke Maxi Dress is available in sizes 12 – 32 in three cup sizes (C/D, E/F, G/H), the Holyoke is designed for light to mid-weight wovens such as cotton lawn, linen or rayon depending on whether you want a structured or flowy look. I love the bra-friendly straps, elasticized back waist and those roomy pockets! I’d be tempted to shorten this to midi-length. There is also a sewalong for this dress available HERE.
Simplicity S9141 from designer Cynthia Rowley, this dress features a shirred bodice (use lighter weight wovens!), shoulder ties with the option for mid-calf or mini lengths, depending on how many tiers you add to the flounced skirt. I imagine this to be a moderately straightforward sew if you’re comfortable with shirring – you might want to think about interlining that bodice though!
Colette Dress by FibreMood – available in Issue 10 2020 of FibreMood magazine or pick the PDF up online HERE. This is a super sweet casual dress featuring a sweetheart neckline in a semi-fitted top and an A-line skirt – Although it has a button front, I don’t think its meant to be functional as it fastens with an invisible zip to the side.
By Hand London ‘Georgia’ Dress –This is such a classic, super-sexy, silhouette with fitted cups and a panelled skirt that fits your curves – go as short as you dare or balance out the sexy with a knee-length. If the narrow straps are not your thing, there is also the option for a wider nautical style faux collar. Great for wovens with a bit of inbuilt stretch such as cotton sateen or twills.
And finally here are my favourite sundress patterns…
The Jessica dress by Mimi G is one of my all time favourites. This PDF pattern comes in sizes XXS – 2XL and can be made in cottons, linens and rayons. The pattern comes with gathered skirt but can be easily changed into pleated or circle skirt. If you want to read more about my experience with this pattern you can do so here.
Next up is a summer wardrobe staple Eucalypt Dress by Megan Nielsen. It comes in sizes 0-30 (in 2 pattern sizes) and has a relaxed style with bust darts for better fit. 20% discount code is available until 21/06/2021, enter sewtogethereucalypt at the checkout.
If you’re not a fan of printing and taping PDFS and also look for extended size range (up to 54″ bust), this Simplicity 8096 is a winner. I love this style!
Looking for a loose style dress with pockets? The Cinderella dress by I AM PATTERNS might be the one for you! The pattern comes with 2 sleeve variations and also a blouse version. It caters for sizes up to 44″ bust.
I’m a big fan of patterns that come with lots of variations. This Simplicity 8146 is my hardest working pattern. It comes in adult, child and a doll size as a summer dress and a jumpsuit. I’ve made many dresses and jumpsuits for my daughter and they’ve been a quick sew. I did a short review of this pattern here.
My last pick is on my cutting table right now – The Kew Dress by Nina Lee. It goes up to size 28 and comes with 3 versions (tea dress, summer dress and a skirt). It would look good in any fabric, I’m using cotton lawn.
Have you decided which pattern to pick? Do you have any suggestions? Let us know in the comments below or over on Instagram! Happy sewing!
Monika, Suzy and Sarah xxx