What We’re Making! The Staple Dress by April Rhodes
“Oh happy day” when we received The Staple Dress by April Rhodes in the shop. I’ve been dreaming of fabrics to use for The Staple Dress for quite a while. In fact I have a stack of fabric that is my potential Staple Dress stash. My brother is getting married in September so I need a great dress. The American Folk Generation Cotton Lawn in Purple called out to me.
Rachel from Imagine Gnats made a beautiful Staple Dress using a Nani Iro print. When I saw her dress I knew I had to try her version. Three rows of shirring were put in the back at the waist. By shirring only the back, the dress ends up with a more fitted front. The loose fabric is drawn to the back giving the front of the dress a flatter, shapelier line. The pattern instructions gives great guidlines for placing the shirring in just the right spot to suit your body shape and style.
The instructions recommend using the bust measurement for sizing. The hips and waist have enough ease for most people. There are helpful tips included for deciding between sizes as well.
I used a regular sewing machine in making the dress. There is really no need for a serger unless you wish to finish the seams in that way. The facing detail made it super easy to finish the neck and armholes.
Don’t be afraid of the smocking. It’s super easy and fun! The elastic thread is wound onto the bobbin by hand. I found I did not need to change my machines tension, just increase the stitch length to 3.
Shirring/Smocking tutorials –
When I finished the dress and brought it into Pink Chalk, 3 chalkettes tried it on. We all have different body shapes but somehow this dress flattered everyone of us. It was like the Sisterhood Of The Traveling Pants. How is that possible? Needless to say the whole shop is a buzz with talk of fabric selection for each Staple Dress we’re dreaming of.