Party Dress by April Rhodes

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Hello Everyone,

Yes!! It’s me :)  I know I know…. I have been away from my blog for so long :/  But… I have a good reason.  Do you wanna know??  OK… After 5 awesome years enjoying every minute with my daughter Fabiana, my husband and I decided to give her a sibling.
  Yes!!  I was prego and had a baby last December!  To be more exact, December 17th, 2013.  Her name is Vivienne Lee (and No we did not name her after the actress).

Well with that being said, now you know why I have been away from my blog for so long.  Not only have I been away from my blog, I have also been away from my lovely new sewing machine :/ Yes!! I got a new sewing machine for Christmas and I love it.  Although I had not made too many projects yet with my new machine, I have been playing with it a little bit.  

Now that the baby is 5 months old and sleeping through the night I have no excuse to not sew.  Well I have been looking around for the perfect project.  Something that is not too fitted (because I am still working out and needed to drop a few baby pounds).  Flipping through pictures on other blogs, Instagram, and Facebook, I found “The Riding Peplum and Party Dress” by April Rhodes.  It didn’t take too long to be convinced on the pattern as it was very pretty.  So I decided to make the party dress version.  Now I would need to find the perfect fabric … that didn’t take long either.  I knew that I wanted to make it out of the Art Gallery Femme Metale Sapphire from the Nouvelle Collection by Pat Bravo.  It just seemed to have the perfect weight for this dress.  

You can find this fabric and the pattern at 5/8th Seams. I am so in love with this fabric.  The only thing that made me a little hesitant about using it was the fact that it is a 45” bolt and I will have to put a center seam on the front and back of the skirt piece.  So… if you are planning to make the “party dress” version you need to make sure that you don’t care about a front and back center seam.  Now if you do care, then you will need to find a 60” fabric that you love.  I didn’t mind since I love the fabric so much and it is also a very busy pattern that will make the seam less noticeable.  

I got my fabric, 3 yards to be exact, and my adventure began.  I laid out and cut my fabric.  After that, I discovered that I did not need the 3 yards… Oh well, I can always make a little something for my girls.  You will utilize a “French Seam” for this.  It is very easy and it will give your garment a nice clean professional appearance.  (April did a really good job with her explanation in the provide instructions)

The pattern uses bias tape.  Yikes!  Well, the pattern calls for you to make your own bias tape (I have done this before) but, busy Daniela  with two babies LOL and a full time job… excuses excuses!!… didn’t have the time to make her own bias.  I also could not wait any longer to wear this dress.  So with that being said, Yes, I bought a pre-made single fold bias tape.  You will use this for armholes and the neckline.  

How easy was that!  I loved it and I finished this just in time for graduation day at Fabiana’s preschool.  Very cool and I received tons of compliments on my new dress.  I have to say that this is one of my favorite quick dresses.  I also wore this dress to work the same day.  Lots more compliments. 

Later in the afternoon my friend Brooke came to the store and loved the dress also.  So she decided to make one for herself.  As I was helping her pick a fabric for her “party dress”, I was explaining to her about my left over fabric situation.  Immediately she told me to make Fabiana a “Fabiana Peplum” by Debbie Brooke Designs with the leftovers and we could have a Mommy & Me type of dress.
Why didn’t I think of this before…. (I guess I was having mommy brain).  What a great idea.  So, that is exactly what I did and here are some pictures for you to enjoy.

In addition to these outfits, I created another version of the dress with a cotton chambray indigo dot by Robert Kaufman because I loved this project so much.  

Now I am waiting for the next perfect fabric to make the “peplum top”. … Maybe something from the Arizona Fabric collection by April Rhodes?  We will be carrying this line at the shop too.  

I also modeled the dress that my friend Brooke made.  So cute and she used a combination of Nature Walkgrass from wee wonders by Sarah Jane  - Michael Miller for the top and Voile Wild Beauty Pineapple by Pat Bravo for the bottom skirt section. Did I mention that she fully lined her dress using the hotdog method that is also used in her MyDress pattern.  It turned out adorable.

I hope you enjoyed this post and all the fun pictures of us.  I hope you get to make this awesome pattern very soon.  You will enjoy making and wearing it very much.



  1. cute!! You don't need to lose any baby weight because you look fabulous just the way you are now! you look amazing in all of those dresses!!! Great job! I want to come get some of that chambray fabric, what a great idea to use for a dress.

    1. Thank you Priscilla!
      You are so sweet :) and yes come by the shop and get some of that chambray before it is all gone!

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