Squeezing in one last sundress

When the latest Tessuti pattern popped up on my Instagram feed a few weeks ago I bought it before I even considered that the end of February might not be the best time to be making sundresses! Our summer has been absolutely spectacular though (best one in Wellington for 60 years, apparently), so I thought I would bump it up to the top of my queue and hope I’d get the chance to wear it.


I used a length of milled linen from The Fabric Store (I’m sure you’re all shocked by that choice) which has been in my stash since last summer, just waiting for the right pattern. I love the colour, but I was slightly alarmed when I tried the dress on to check the strap length and realised that it was almost an exact match for my skin! I didn’t realise that I was ‘vintage blush’… Hopefully it doesn’t disappear too much against my torso.


There are some lovely details in this pattern, the top-stitched pockets are very neatly finished, and I love the split hem with its mitred corners! I shortened this pattern in a couple of places, I took an inch off at the waist and another inch half way down the side splits, and then I ended up taking an inch off the upper edge of the front neckline too to compensate for my short upper torso. I also shortened the straps, but I did that by pinning them while I was wearing it so I’m not sure how much I took off them.


I also took it in 1/2” at the top of each of the side seams, but I still have a bit of gaping under the arms. If it fitted any closer I think I would need to add a zip to get in and out of it and I like that it’s an easy pull on style, so I’m just ignoring it! I might try taking a narrow wedge out of the CF on the fold next time too, to see if that helps it sit more snugly in the upper chest.



I made a long skinny fabric tie for a belt, I just cut a 2” length right along the selvage and sewed it into a tube. I was very glad to have my loop tuner when I was trying to get that right side out! Even then it was a bit of a struggle getting all 2m onto the length of the turner, I should have left the opening half way along rather than at the end. I really like it belted, but I’m surprised how much I like it just hanging straight too. I thought it might be too shapeless, especially with the length, but I think it looks pretty stylish really!


I wore it out to the Newtown Festival yesterday, hot off the machine! I stuck a tee shirt under it as it was so sunny and I didn’t want to worry about reapplying that much sunblock, and I think it looks ok layered too. I should maybe stick to plain white tee shirts though, as the striped one definitely shows through the linen. I have plans to make another one (with a few changes) for layering in autumn out of some gingham linen, and I’d love to make a fancy version out of some lush mustard silk CDC that I’ve been hoarding. And maybe another one for next summer, in Caper linen from TFS…

14 thoughts on “Squeezing in one last sundress

  1. You are lookin’ so stylish ma’am. I just bought that pattern yesterday when I was in the Tessuti shop capturing a few viscose/spandexes that had escaped their vigilance – still had sale stickers on!! I love this pattern, particularly because it looks so much a hipster apron don’t you think? Excellent on you. Over here in sticky humid Sydney I am soooo looking forward to a bit of cold weather.

  2. I love your Tessuti make! I’ve been eyeing this pattern since its release to wear just as you have over a Tee. The straps look too narrow to cover bra straps and I can’t go without a bra 🙂 I love your linen – the colour is drape is perfect for this pattern.

    1. Thanks! I’m considering making the straps wider on my next version so I can wear it with a standard bra, I hate strapless ones! The thin ones do look pretty though…

  3. What a lovely dress! The colour is so delicate. I see where your worry was coming from, but I think it looks lovely on you. Love the dress layered with a tee. I hope you will enjoy more warm days and get a lot of wear out of this dress before it has to be packed away until the next season

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