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This must be my favourite pattern from a pretty decent retro collection. I have used it again and again, for the summer garden party dress, for the polka dot dress, for a French toille dress and even made 3 further copies of it for the three bridesmaids at a wedding.

I was looking for a nice, light summer fabric for this Mediterranean cruise and the fabric simply won me over. It is good quality cotton, beautiful print, white & blue (a must) and it has a bit of stretch, too, which means it sews easily and is very forgiving.

I used the 1956 retro Butterick pattern and added the bias white hemming for an easy finish.

The dress features side concealed zip, 6 panel – skirt and raised waist, silk crepe lined bodice and butterfly wings.

This time I have not used a crinoline (too voluminous to carry in a suitcase). However the dress itself has sufficient volume to show off your waist with or without crinoline.

I have shortened the length considerably in order to minimise the fabric use. So I have only used 1.5 m instead of the recommended 2.3 m.

It is a a wearable, fun dress and I enjoyed wearing it on the French coast.