When I saw Sew Caroline’s version of the Sewaholic Saltspring dress last fall I fell in love. I’ve seen quite a few versions of this dress on sewing blogs and I knew I wanted to make one, but it was Caroline’s lovely flowery maxi version that sealed the deal for me. My husband got me the pattern for Valentine’s day and I got the lovely Amy Butler voile on sale at Hawthorne Threads. I got enough of it to make my first Josephine top and this dress.
The bodice of the dress is lined and the lining is shorter than the outer piece, which creates the blousing at the waist. I made a muslin of just the top and decided to lengthen my bodice pieces by half an inch. I cut the upper bodice in a size 8 and graded out to a 10 at the waist. I wanted the skirt to be very full so I graded out to a size 12 for the skirt.
The pattern calls for the bodice to be lined with the same fabric as the main dress. I underlined the bodice and skirt because my fabric was somewhat sheer. I didn’t want the bodice lining to show through the outer bodice. I also wanted to avoid having to wear a slip so I underlined the skirt.
There is a full sewalong on Sewaholic.net with lots of details on how to make this dress. I followed the instructions to make a full strap instead of doing the tie top spaghetti straps as in the pattern. I was hoping to avoid wearing a strapless bra but the straps kind of sit off of my shoulders a bit so it really didn’t work. I think next time I will make the spaghetti straps but maybe do the variation where they tie in the front.
I love how this dress fits. The long, full skirt is so comfortable, especially in this light, airy fabric. This is the second Sewaholic pattern I’ve made and I’m looking forward to my next!