Pattern Walkthrough – Backless Dress

I needed a nice summery dress for a good friend’s wedding this past July.  She was doing a lot of adorable vintage-y touches to her decor, so I thought I’d finally put this yardage of gentle “grandma” floral to use and make an outfit!



I used this pattern but made my share of alterations.  It’s vintage (is 90s vintage? I think this is from the 1990s) Simplicity 9494 “Design Your Own Dress” pattern.


This pattern utilizes facing for the neck and armholes, but I decided to do a full bodice lining so that I could sew on some bra cups.  I also added some bust darts that I self-drafted (imperfectly) on my “muslin” of Dinosaur Train fabric.

Screen Shot 2013-08-15 at 8.26.57 AM

For the all-in-one lining, I made two copies of each bodice pattern piece, put the darts in both the front pieces, and attached the front pieces to the back pieces at the shoulders.  Laying the bodice’s right-sides-together, I then stitched along the red lines indicated below:


And then to attach the sides I did this method, just as in the Jorna pattern!

stitch-up side

The pattern for the basic backless sheath dress has a big. ass. bow on the rump, which I wasn’t feeling 100%. The purpose of the bow was to cover the scrunchy-esque elastic band that joins the gap.  Rather than all of the above, I decided to make a flap that would latch with hook and eyes.  For the exposed skirt in the gap, I finished the top edge and used elastic shirring to gather the fabric.


I hand sewed the cups into place.  They are left-over inserts from a sports bra.  I only attached about 75% of the cup to the lining, leaving the tops of the cups unsewn because i didn’t want to distort the shape of the cup or the lining and I was having problems.  This worked fine. 

I also hemmed the dress considerably shorter than the pattern indicates to add to the sexy sex appeal of my grandma floral dress.


With the exception of the misplaced bust darts, this dress is a success!  Add some fun braided bun mess accented with fake flowers in your hair, and you have a complete look : )


Filed under Clothes, Pattern

4 responses to “Pattern Walkthrough – Backless Dress

  1. Rossie

    Sex kitten dresses in grandma florals is the next big things. I just called it. #grandmasexfloral
    You are talented and hotttt!

  2. Kali

    I totally love this!! It looks great!

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