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DIY velvet dress

This fall has been all about velvet.  It’s amazing how a textile that’s been around forever can get a facelift in the form of a modern design.  My experience with velvet was a navy blue super stiff dress as a 7 year old.  All I remember was the sound it made when I walked and how uncomfortable and itchy it was especially when I sat on our crushed velvet sofa.  Yep we had a red crushed velvet sofa in our living room that we were only allowed to sit on when we had on fancy clothes aka awful velvet dresses.  But this new wave of velvet goodness is giving me a new appreciation for velvet.

I knew when searching for the perfect velvet I didn’t want anything stiff so I chose this amazing olive colored rayon-silk velvet that thankfully comes in 11 colors because the the olive is sold out.

This fabric is gorgeous! the colors are amazing, it cuts and sews beautifully and it feels great against the skin.  Keep in mind, this fabric has no stretch so tighter fitting designs will not work.

For these two dresses I used 3 yards of fabric

The pattern I used for my dress was vintage Butterick 5871 view E shirt pattern with the following alterations:

-Added 3″ to the width of the pattern back

-Added 11″ to the length of the back and front

-Added 2″ to the width of the front pattern

-Added 5″ to the length of each side of the necktie

-Removed the back zipper

-Added a 5″ slit to the neck front

Chandler’s dress was made with a self drafted pattern











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  1. Anne
    October 25, 2016 / 6:19 pm


    I’m in love with both your dress and Chandler’s. The velvet is gorgeous and I would love to get my hands on some.
    Can you tell me where you found it? (Hopefully there is some left.)

    Many thanks,


    • Nikki
      October 25, 2016 / 10:02 pm

      Thank you,

      The link to the fabric is in the text.

  2. Alice Thomas
    October 26, 2016 / 1:34 am

    Beautiful dresses! Did you change anything on your sewing machine besides needle, stitch length, and tension? You never fail to impress me with your talents.

    • Nikki
      October 27, 2016 / 8:25 pm

      Thank you Alice, this fabric sews very easily I din’t even need to change my needle.

  3. Manikka
    October 26, 2016 / 3:25 pm

    Love the dresses and the velvet!

  4. Tina
    December 13, 2016 / 4:06 am

    Do you sew for others?

    • Nikki
      December 14, 2016 / 11:28 pm

      No, not anymore.

  5. Stacey Quinn
    December 15, 2016 / 2:26 am

    Hi! I’d like to make this dress for myself. I’ve already purchased the pattern. Is it necessary to add width to the front and back in order for it to drape like yours, or can I leave it as is and only add length to the front, back and necktie? Thanks!

    • Nikki
      December 17, 2016 / 12:02 am

      Because it’s a shirt pattern, it’s going to fit much slimmer than a dress pattern so in order for it to drape and fit loose you will need to add a few inches in the front and back. You may not want yours to fit as loose so just adjust the amount of inches you want accordingly. Place the front cut pattern against you and determine how much wiggle room you need.

      • Stacey
        December 18, 2016 / 8:35 pm

        Awesome thanks!