Southport the Third: the birthday version

I know, I know, this is the third True Bias Southport dress I’ve posted about in as many months. But this one is special, its my birthday dress!

Once again its made out of rayon, because why change a good thing? This time its rayon challis, and it is much better behaved and much nicer to wear than my crepe version. I have a well documented stripe obsession, so I was pretty excited to find this fabric last year! I had originally earmarked it for a jacket lining, but I decided it really wanted to be a dress. And as my sewing skills seem to have gone out of the window since I went back to work this year, I thought I would stick to something familiar, which I knew I’d wear heaps.

So it should have been easy! I remembered that I took 5/8″ off the straps of my blue Southport, so I cracked on and took 5/8″ off these ones too. I got all the binding on nice and smooth first time, the skirt went together beautifully, all my stripes matched up perfectly, and I was really enjoying myself. I tried it on to decide where I should hem it (I had a feeling it would look weird if the skirt ended on a white stripe, so I left a narrow black border, which I think was a good decision), and found that the arm holes were so high and tight that I felt like Quasimodo. At that point I remembered how I had modified the straps and traced off my new bodice shape after my last Southport, so I had now removed 1 1/4″. Shit. No wonder it was a bit tight! I was so miffed that I had to unpick all my beautiful binding… Happily I could let the seam allowance at the shoulder out to a tiny amount, and they’re almost right. The armhole is still a bit high, and the binding isn’t as neat as my first go, but at least its wearable! And did I mention my stripe matching?


Even inside the pockets!

I can’t believe that I’ve done something stupid each time I’ve made this dress. I’ve now made a clear note on my bodice pattern piece, hopefully I won’t do anything so silly again!


I do really like this dress though. Perhaps not quite as much as my blue version, but a close second. I love the matte black buttons that I chose (thanks you instagram for persuading me that plain black was the way to go!) and I stuck with the easy option and used grosgrain ribbon again. I’m hoping I might have enough of this fabric left to make myself a Tiny Pocket Tank or something similar! I wore it all day on my birthday, and it took me from posh morning tea with my Mum, Sister and Aunt to present shopping and burgers for lunch with Monsieur, to a cup of tea with my MiL, to Sangria and Tapas with my lovely friends without ever making me feel out of place. What more could I ask of a dress?


Fancy cakes (I’m not even sure if cake is the right word, but they’re delicious!), my chocolate cake-salted caramel-chocolate mouss confection, a super cute vintage pattern I found when we were present shopping, and the kitty seal of approval for my dress. A lovely day!

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13 thoughts on “Southport the Third: the birthday version

  1. Lovely dress and I live the painterly stripes Kirsten. I’m guessing this dress isn’t challenging you and as a result you’re on auto pilot? We all do it, definitely not a sign of dementia (I say reciting numbers backwards in 7s from 200)!!

    1. I love the shabby stripes too! I suppose I might have been a bit blasé about this one, but I think I’ve also just got myself into a bit of a snit about my sewing recently…My bad attitude is never going to lead to good results 😛 need to get myself together!

  2. Another beautiful dress! How can you go wrong with stripes really? I’m glad you were able to let the seam allowance out a bit and make the fit work – I hate when things like that happen! I hope you had a lovely birthday!

  3. I have had my eye on this fabric for a while– it’s the Cotton + Steel rayon, right? It is so perfect for this dress. I’m glad you were able to save it after the straps ended up too short. I have a bad habit of not making notes of my changes on my pattern pieces so I have done stuff like that before!

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