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Graduation Day Pencil Dress

Added May 24, 2011

by rogue-cellist

Bathurst, Australia






I needed something to wear under my academic robes when I graduated with my Graduate Diploma of Applied Science (Library and Information Management) a couple of weeks ago… yes, I’m a librarian- is it obvious? :P.
The dress needed to be fairly plain and close fitting, somewhere between knee length and tea length and not clash with my hood- which was red with a green and blue stripe so a not too little black dress seemed to be the order of the day.
I made this out of stretch cotton sateen which was beautiful to sew with and to wear. The dress is unlined and has facings using the self fabric. I first made a wearable muslin out of the same fabric so I had something to wear if I didn’t manage to finish this version in time.
The red piping was handmade using silk (leftover from the dress I wore to my sister’s wedding). I didn’t have an invisible zipper foot so I made do without (which I shouldn’t have done and I’m ordering one now to go on my new machine).

Aside from that there’s not much to tell. The pattern sewed up like a dream (the instructions were fairly basic but the dress was pretty intuitive so it didn’t matter) and wasn’t difficult to alter to fit properly, the dress was very comfortable to wear and I got quite a few compliments. I think this pattern is very versatile. It would make a fantastic LBD and would be gorgeous in any other colour from brights to neutrals or prints. I think it would be perfect for office wear teamed with a jacket and I also plan on making a lace version soon too.

I made the black velvet pinafore my daughter is wearing in the first photo too. I’ll upload that later when I’ve had a chance to get some better photos of it.

Material Notes

stretch cotton sateen, silk dupion (piping), invisible zipper.




Spring, Summer, Fall
Garment Type
Business, Classic, Evening Wear
Cotton, Blends

4 Comments Sign in to add a post

  • 2010-06-24_14_18_28-1_large

    May 27, 2011, 03.13 AMby vestiphobia

    The piping looks perfect on this dress! And I must say, your first picture is absolutely adorable:) Congratulations!

    1 Reply
    • Sdc11375_large

      May 27, 2011, 10.05 AMby rogue-cellist

      thanks :-) you really couldn’t see much of the dress on the day but I was happy with how it turned out. I don’t have a lot of experience sewing piping so it was a bit of a relief that it wasn’t a disaster really!

  • Dsc_0028_large

    May 25, 2011, 12.52 AMby Passiona Cottee

    Congratulations! Wearing something you made makes the special day extra special! I love piping. And you made it yourself from silk… wow-factor!

    1 Reply
    • Sdc11375_large

      May 25, 2011, 01.01 AMby rogue-cellist

      Thanks :-) I had a fantastic day. I’d made silk piping once before (for my niece’s dedication gown which is in my projects as well) so I knew it was not going to be too hard. I definitely thought it was worth the extra effort.

  • Img_1224_large

    May 24, 2011, 02.50 PMby halokitty087

    Looks wonderful! Congrats on graduating!!

    1 Reply
    • Sdc11375_large

      May 25, 2011, 12.58 AMby rogue-cellist

      Thanks! it’s been a long time coming.

  • Lorenna2_large

    May 24, 2011, 01.08 PMby lorenna

    it looks great! perfect fit, and I love the piping!

    1 Reply
    • Sdc11375_large

      May 25, 2011, 12.57 AMby rogue-cellist

      Thanks :-) The only tricky part was getting the piping to join right at the shoulder seam and because it wasn’t in the pattern there weren’t any instructions on how to do it but I was pretty happy with how it came out in the end.

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