A midsummer night, red linen dress

For as long as I remember I always wore the same colours: mainly blues, some green, black, some grey, some white and that’s about it. Every few years or so, I get inspired to make something red. This year was surely a strange year because the inspiration to make something red stroke twice: one in knitting a red cotton t-shirt (post soon to come) and the second in this red linen dress.

I don’t feel comfortable in red. I very rarely wear red. Furthermore, I often put a red item on and take it off swiftly.

And yet, I made myself a red dress.

red linen dress

It started as a second hand bedsheet that I dyed it in my washing machine. It’s probably the first time my home dying experiments turn out without visible flaws.

To make the bodice, I used the Seamwork Catarina bodice that I’ve sewn many times. I really need to start taking better notes on my patterns because after I’ve sewn it I again noticed that the bodice is too long for my torso and the straps make the cleavage way more revealing than I’m comfortable with. This time, I wrote the perfect strap measurement on the pattern itself.

red linen dress side view

For the skirt part, I used a tutorial from the amazing Jess Dang, a sewist from Hanoi, Vietnam, who make tutorials for sewing or altering clothes. I love the way she creates the pattern based on body measurement directly on the fabric. And she makes construction so simple. Forget the bodice blocks, with a few simple measurements and angles, she makes really complicates things quite simple.

I’ve never sewn a skirt with a side slit before, and it worked out well. I particularly liked her method for adding an elastic casing to the waistline – so easy!

red summer dress

After making this dress, I started wondering where I’d wear it. This wasn’t a closet need, obviously, but rather a “need to make”. I decided it would be perfect for Midsummer Night festivities and the rooftop party I was going to.

Let me know in the comments if you think I wore the dress or changed into something blue : )

Catarina dress sewing pattern by Seamwork: https://www.seamwork.com/catalog/catarina
Jess Dang dress tutorial: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8fNHNwTWRo

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