The Kate Dress

It's not every day you have a dress named after you.
And this one is a stunner! Introducing the Kate Tea Dress* by Designer Stitch.

Back in 2017, I made a dress. And it was a bit beautiful. Check out more photos here.

Now Anne has released a full version of the pattern, and there are so many options and features!

The full pattern has plenty to offer -

  • cup sizes in the bodice (B to DD)
  • circle skirt or box gathered
  • tea length or just above the knee
  • top as a separate
  • skirt as a separate
This version is a B cup, knee length circle skirt.

I used brocade for this version. The stiffness of the fabric works nicely with the shorter length, giving it a bit of flare.  The brocade wasn't too bad to work with. I overlocked many of the seam edges before sewing to prevent too much fraying. On some of the darts and side seams it's possible to see the stitches once the fabric is pressed. I think the needle was catching the longer threads and pulling them through the seam. Next time I sew with this material, I'm going to try using a microtex needle (nice and sharp and pointy).

One of the perks of this pattern - and sewing with Designer Stitch patterns in general - is that the block is standardised between patterns. This makes it quick for me to adjust the pattern to fit - tapering out a size from bust to waist, and throwing in a small sway back adjustment (given the flare of the skirt, I left of the extra size in the hips).

I didn't include a sway back adjustment in my first version. It doesn't look too bad. But now I know I can avoid those pools of fabric, it's well worth the few extra minutes to draw a few lines.  Having a centre back seam makes it easy to do the adjustment.

I love an invisible zipper in a dress. It gives a beautiful finish. And I think it's actually easier to insert than a standard dress zipper. The pattern includes clear instructions on how to insert the zipper.

Other great features of the patterns are: included seam allowances differing for different parts of the dress (clearly indicated in the instructions); pattern layout an printing table (so you know which pages to print for which option); cutting layout to help make the most of your fabric; a quick sew sheet if you want to dive straight in; and layers so you can print the size(s) you want. I also has separate files for pattern pieces vs tutorial, and A0 pattern pieces - I find the separate files make it a lot easier to figure out which pages to print.

The pattern is available in Australian Sizes 6-16 (US 2-22). It's on sale for release, for only $8.00 (US) - grab a copy for yourself here.

*This pattern contains affiliate links. If you click through and make a purchase I receive a small commission at no extra cost to yourself. The sewing and opinions are all my own.


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