The Dress Just Isn’t That Into You

Staple Dress in blue chambrayThis dress was sooo difficult to photograph, which suggests it’s just not that into me. Possibly not my most flattering make. Will that stop me from wearing it? No way! It’s breathable and comfortable, and in summer heat that’s exactly what I need.

Staple Dress in chambray

This is my second make of the Staple Dress in one of the best fabrics I have ever worked with – a dot chambray from The Village Haberdashery, who currently stock several chambrays.

I don’t use the words ‘best fabric’ lightly. Not when I risk making The Man Outside Sainsburys jealous. But seriously, you won’t regret investing in some of this beauty. Seams melt away beneath the press of a moderately heated iron, it behaves, is light and malleable and just – ooh! Can’t beat a good chambray, and a good chambray is hard to find.

Walthamstow is enjoying the summer and so is Ella.

Walthamstow Summer.jpg

Ella at Hollow PondsI think I must have known that this dress wasn’t going to be all that when I decided to add a false plackett with flower buttons in order to avoid the hospital gown vibe.

Plackett ollage.jpg

This was my first time ever shirring. Guess what, guys? It’s easy!


ShirringThis experience proves to me that the Staple Dress needs a stunning fabric to lift it beyond the pedestrian. But sometimes it’s fine to be pedestrian. Sometimes you just need a cool dress to wear when walking the dog on a hot summer day.

How are you keeping cool this weekend?

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35 Responses to The Dress Just Isn’t That Into You

  1. annie says:

    I rather like this dress. And you look great. Sometimes photos aren’t truthful.

  2. Some clothes are seriously near impossible to photograph.. you really need to film it in action. It still looks great though, and sooooooo comfy!

  3. Some clothes are seriously near impossible to photograph.. you really need to film it in action. It still looks great though, and sooooooo comfy!

  4. Amy Beeton says:

    I love it. im sure its super comfy. now off to check the chambray 😉

  5. alisasibrova says:

    I agree with Annie’s comment – sometimes photos just turn out wrong. I like your dress 🙂

  6. Claire says:

    The dress looks lovely, what a great shape too. Love the false plackett!

  7. Jenny says:

    I have to admit this pattern has not been my favourite of the year. It reminds me of the sack dresses we used to wear many moons ago. I think they looked best on Twiggy and I was never twig like, even as a young woman. However it looks good on you and I am sure it is just right for this hot, sticky weather. Fab fabric too.

  8. Taja says:

    Not my favourite silhouette, but it works on you. I do like the faux placket, as it does read a bit as a hospital gown from a distance. That could just be the photo, though. Some fabrics/styles photograph better than others.

    As the weather cools–although you probably are not ready to even think about that just yet!–you could add an unstructured blazer/jacket to stretch the wearing season just a bit. Winter completely missed us this past season, wutg summer arrived in March (unusual, even in the low desert), so most of us are ready to think about cooler temperatures!

    Staying cool this weekend? Inside in the air conditioning, of course! Apart from a quick trip to my hairdresser (nabbed his third appointment of the day–yay!) in the early morning, I’m planning to stay out of our forecasted 106 – 107 degrees Fahrenheit (approximately 41 degrees Celcius). Thankfully, the humidity has subsided until late Sunday or sometime Monday or Tuesday. ‘Tis a bit vague!


  9. Janet says:

    The dress does look comfy & comfy is really just the thing – especially in hot weather. I really like the fabric too. It’s pretty steamy here in Wiltshire & Izzy (my Miniature Schnauzer) is really struggling with it. Unfortunately, unlike your Ella she’s frightened of water and the thunder storms of last night didn’t go down too well either! We went for a walk in the woods above the Kennet & Avon canal today, that was cool.

  10. Emma says:

    It looks fab and I love the placket/buttons. I made the staple dress a few weeks ago and ended up with just the same ‘hospital gown’ feel despite using a vintage print floaty fabric. Adding a belt might help; definitely lifted it to an easily wearable in public dress for me and I’m loving it in this hot weather!

  11. stgilbert says:

    I love this dress and I have the pattern! It looks great on you and there’s nothing wrong with utilitarian pieces 🙂

  12. Pat says:

    This week I used chambray for the first time to make Simplicity 1426. It is a wonderful fabric to work with and wear. I think your dress looks great. We’re having a break from 90+ degree heat and 100% humidity (well maybe not 100% but it feels like it) for a couple of days, so I’ll be outside by the pool knitting my little heart out. Ella has the right idea 🙂

  13. Stephanie says:

    I think you look quite pretty, cool and summery! I take terrible photos of the things I make so I can sympathize with the difficulty of conveying the right information about a garment.

  14. Melanie says:

    I really like this dress and I think it looks lovely on you! The chambray looks to die for…I wonder how much their postage is to Australia (do I dare look)! I’ve had this pattern for AGES but the shirring is freaking me out…I’m just a beginner but I will take the plunge eventually!

  15. Helen says:

    I think the close up picture of the chambray gives a truer picture of how it will look in real life and the fabric and pattern are a good combination, it does look quite chic on you and works well with the scarf. I was unsure about the pattern but gave it a go with some purple strawberry covered viscose and I’ve worn it quite a bit. it is the perfect dress to potter around in and some days that is all you need! I also love stirring, it’s so much fun to do, even though I caught the skirt a few times with my enthusiasm!

  16. pammie says:

    I actually like the dress for summer — I see what you mean! But, I love the fabric – and is that a Kerry Blue Terrier in the water?

  17. liza jane says:

    I think it just needs to be a little bit shorter. Raise that hem line and show off those pins!

  18. Eliza-sew-little says:

    I think it looks lovely on you. I love the faux placket. I’ll remember that idea.
    I’ve just made this dress. I used a viscose jersey and it lives up to its name a wardrobe ‘staple’. Tight fitting and close fitting garments are over rated in this weather. Sometimes less is more and I’ll be making more. Love the chambray.

  19. fabrictragic says:

    I’ve used this fabric before too and it is delightful. I think shorten it, and wear it with a belt and sandals, and it will be just a little bit more chic.

  20. Magic Cochin says:

    The fabric is lovely. Mmm? Not sure about the placket? But it would look great if it had a belt in to match the placket fabric and that would make it more chic and less hospital gown xx

  21. Ruth says:

    I’ve just made a dress that I feel exactly the same about! It wasn’t easy to get pictures of it, I don’t think it’s the most flattering thing I’ve ever made, but it’s so comfy and perfect for this hot weather!

  22. velosewer says:

    When the day is hot and sticky, nothing looks fabulous. You need a dress that allows the air to move around you so you don’t feel so hot. This dress is perfect for travel in the summer.

  23. A roomy dress that feels cool and is good for walking the dog. That’s perfect for summer!

  24. Amy says:

    I think it looks lovely! With some leather sandals, big sunnies and a floppy hat, you could be lounging on the beach in the south of France! I ditto the ladies above, I bet it would be great to travel in. Now all you have to do is book a jet set holiday!

  25. Your dress is darling and I forgot how beautiful and lush Britain is in summer. I haven’t been there for 20 years.

  26. ooobop! says:

    The dress is great, Karen! I love it with your neck tie and sunnies. Perfect dress for accessorising! I’ve been eyeing up some slubby chambray but I must refrain till I’ve waded through some stash!

  27. nita says:

    Looks perfect for the hot days we’re having here!

  28. bayeaston says:

    I am with those who suggest a tiny raising of the hem, an awesome belt, cool footware, and a fun hat. It’s just one of those outfits made to let accessories shine!

  29. paloverdeblooms says:

    A comfortable dress but without much style to it. It’s the sort of design that you’d find in the Big4 “Stitch ‘n’ Save” inexpensive and easy lines. It looks fine on you and I like the blue appliqued addition you made, but I don’t think it particularly does anything for you. Just my honest opinion.

  30. M-C says:

    I agree you should try to film it before giving up on it entirely :-). But I don’t know.. Maybe the extra contrast of the placket shows up that the color is a bit meh? I do think its problem is more color than design, as a slightly baggy, cool summer dress is a blessing and there’s no harm in looking comfortable. But if it was mine I’d also wear it and feel comfortable :-).

  31. Tereza says:

    It looks really cute sporty with those sneakers and scarf. It reminds me of a dress pattern I bought years ago. Simple, comfortable, unfussy. A dress you could whip up in an afternoon that would showcase the accessories rather than call attention to itself. Everyone needs ones, so I’m glad to see you and pups are ready for hot summer walking.

  32. Colleen says:

    It’s not that bad but I think it will be better in the cooler months with a cardigan and tights. I have had some trouble making an April Rhodes date dress look good on me. Some patterns just don’t work for everyone.

    However, that chambray IS THE BEST EVER. When it first came out it sold out over here like hotcakes. It’s a Robert Kaufman — I love Robert Kaufman’s chambrays and denims and indigos these days. That company is completely doing something right!

  33. kristonlion says:

    I love this! I actually clicked on this post hoping you’d give it away! hahahaha!

  34. Connie says:

    Lots of sewists have made this dress and I haven’t liked any of them. It just doesn’t seem to be a flattering dress at all for any body. However, yours looks just great. I suspect it is the fabric choice and your little faux placket thingy.

  35. Pingback: Simplicity 1941 In Chambray | Did You Make That?

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