This dress was a happy accident. Shortly before Christmas, Drygoods Design had a sale and I purchased three yards of Moda’s Wee Bright Plaid Blue Brushed Cotton. I was looking for flannel and it was in the “Flannel/Brushed Cotton” section on their website. I’m still not exactly sure what the difference is between flannel and brushed cotton. Based on this one sample, it seems that brushed cotton is softer and warmer than quilting cotton, but not as soft and warm as flannel.
The fabric sat around in my stash until I made the Royal Oslo Cardigan and realized that it coordinated. I wanted something quick and easy, so I reached for my copy of April Rhodes’ Staple Dress. The first Staple Dress I made was in October 2013, so it was definitely time for another one. Even though the pattern wasn’t difficult the first time around, I was pleasantly surprised by how easy it was this time. Sometimes I’m frustrated with my amateur seamstress skills, but this was one instance where I could feel how much my skills have improved over time. As a result, sewing this dress made me very, very happy.
Initially, I thought I would try my hand at matching plaid for this dress, but it didn’t work out. After washing and pressing, the plaid pattern of the fabric wasn’t quite aligned. If I lined up the horizontal lines to make the pattern match at the side seams, then the vertical lines skewed to one side. I chose to optimize for keeping the vertical lines straight and decided that I was okay with not matching the plaid this time. I know matching plaids is supposed to be a mark of quality, but I like this dress well enough without it. I’ll try again another time.
What can I say about the Staple Dress that hasn’t already been said before? I sewed the same size as last time, but retraced the pattern so that I could use the straight hem instead of the high-low hem. I do love a good high-low hem, but thought that this fabric lent itself more to the straight hem. For this version, I omitted the elastic shirring at the waist. I always wear my first Staple Dress with a belt, so the shirring is rather redundant for me. Adding the pockets was a no-brainer, because I’ve learned that if a dress doesn’t have pockets, I won’t wear it.
All in all, I’m quite pleased with this dress. It coordinates with both my Royal Oslo Cardigan and my Navy Julia Cardigan, and is a pattern that I know I will wear, so I feel it aligns nicely with my Wardrobe Architect efforts. Also, it’s nice to have a more wintery Staple Dress in my closet, because Spring can’t get here early enough.