Lofty Goals

The other night I spent a little too much time on NET-A-PORTER.COM drooling over absolutely gorgeous dresses that are well beyond my not-so-deep pockets, as well as sewing ability. So, of course the next logical step was to pick my favorites that seemed doable (whatever that means) and find patterns that resembled them as much as possible (in my would-be seamstress' eyes).

THIS IS A WISH LIST. As in, I really wish I could stay focused long enough, afford the materials, have the time, and fully understand how to make the following dresses:

Juicy Couture $140

Simplicity 2360 in view A?

Tucker $295

Simplicity 2175 in view A with the smaller ruffle? May be a bit of a stretch...

Alberta Ferretti $1,305

Butterick 5343 in view B with ties at the shoulders?

Diane von Furstenberg $345

McCall's 6347 in view A + bias cut strips? Not 100% on the sweetheart portion.

Sonia Rykiel $495

New Look 6895 in view F lengthened + giant bow?

Sonia Rykiel $1,120

Versus $1,650

Butterick 5554 in view A with some serious modifications/color-blocking.

I got so excited about the last two dresses that I even sketched them out to try and better understand exactly what I'd need to do to recreate them.

Sonia Rykiel: chopped to bits to account for the midsection and the sweetheart portion, then adding neck and armhole binding. I also realize the side panels are MUCH smaller in the original— Whatever.

Versus: cut below the bust, possible cut-outs, plus inverted pleats with separate underlays, right?? Making my own pattern for that shrug also seems easy enough.

Figuring out whether godets, gores, or pleats would work best for the Versus dress took a minute, too. Then I realized inverted pleats with separate inlays made the most sense, thanks to the sewing book my mom got me for Christmas. Yay, mom!

An added bonus is I already own a few of these patterns, though I'm fairly certain the cost of materials can and most likely will get out of hand. Luckily I buy all of my patterns on super-duper sale so they won't cost me more than 99¢ a piece. Being resourceful when you're on a budget can be pretty easy if you have the time to shop smart, so I'll be going to thrift stores, second hand shops, yard sales, and so on to find inexpensive fabric. JoAnn also does an awesome job of sending out coupons for 40-50% off on a regular basis, which I think can be applied to notions, but I'm not completely positive. I also really enjoy this entire look, so I'll just add it to the list:

I wish I knew where I found this photo, but I can't remember!

Simplicity 2848 in view C + a flat collar, right?

In a perfect world I would commit to some kind of schedule, but that may be too difficult for a TON of different reasons. Maybe this can become a monthly challenge for me or something? We'll see... My Parkahh! has been sitting in my studio waiting since October/November!! I'm terrible ;x

Doesn't this dress look like the love-child of the Versus dress + the knit Sonia Rykiel?

ML Designs


  1. you are a superwoman. you have such a great eye. i see stuff i want to re-create all the time and never even thought of drawing it out and dissecting it.
    i used to just make things using the good fabric right away, then mess up, waste the good stuff and give up. then i bought a bunch of muslin and made dummy clothes first, saw where i had to alter and remake. that was soooo time consuming and expensive, cause muslin aint cheap, that i gave up with that too. you mentioned using bedsheets and i think that is going to be my new thing.
    thank you! and good luck, i'm sure your creations will turn out better than the originals.

  2. Stina, you are my favorite <3

    The way I figure it, using things like bed sheets is just the most economical way and you can find them super cheap at second hand shops. Sometimes they're even in really great prints and that way you can have a wearable muslin instead of being wasteful. While I'm not entirely sure how I'm going to go about everything yet, I'm really excited and I appreciate your support!!


    Omg Jaimielee we're having so many sewing parties soon. I LOVE YOU XOXOXOX

  4. Wow, you spent quite some effort on matching dresses with similar patterns! I love this post and I fell in love with the dotted Sonia Rykiel...I am really looking forward to see your creations!!! Happy Sewing! <3

  5. Oh my, lofty goals, indeed. I'm in the same boat; piles of fabrics and patterns but not nearly enough focus to buckle down and get it all done. Every now and then, though, I pull something out and actually complete it and it feels so great to have something so nice that fits so well.
    Also, that Versus dress is amazing.

  6. Ooh! Also also, McCall's 6347B looks a lot like an Evans dress I was practically drooling over a few weeks ago and since I cannot possibly afford the shipping even if I could afford the dress, which I can't, I'm adding the pattern to my list of things to get the next time the fabric shop does their super cheap pattern sale.

  7. Thanks so much, Nette! I'm excited to get started :) Shopping on a budget is proving to be difficult!

    DK, I know exactly what you mean. I get so amped up and then take ages to finish stuff. Right now gathering materials is where I'm stuck, but there's no rush! That McCall's pattern is so great, too. There are a few more I didn't even blog about here that I really want!!

  8. I'm in serious love with that Sonia Rykiel dress! I'm also psyched to discover your blog. Can't wait to check out previous posts!

  9. That was actually the first dress I looked at on net-a-porter! I want so badly to start on these but I've been having a tough time with finding my materials ;\

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