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Pattern Review: Simplicity 3803, Day Gown

Sunday phone call re-enactment

“Hi Nicegirl”
“Hey Cidell”
“So, I finished the Simplcity day gown in seersucker and I don’t know how long I should keep it. It feels really long.”
“Well, when is the last time you wore a floor length gown? Maybe you just need to get used to it.”

Truth be told, the last time I wore a floor length gown is when a girlfriend and I had too many mango margaritas over lunch and went to a bridal store to make fun of ugly wedding dresses.

Luckily, this is one floor length gown that is not ugly. I love my dress! I’m thrilled I have a party to wear it to this weekend.

I made two chanages from the pattern. The back is actually a key hole opening. I chose to ignore that design feature and just put a 22 inch invisible zip all the way up. I honestly didn’t realize it was keyhole until I saw the sewing diagram. I also put in a batist lining for the skirt. I thought the seersucker would be a little rough and worried about the skirt going between my legs.

Seersucker is big this year as are maxi dresses. I’m feeling very J.Crew in this. Like I just walked off the set of a modern Great Gatsby.

By the time I finished hemming tonight, it was 89 degrees in my house. Sweltering. But, with the cool batiste lining, I felt all sugar and light. That could have been the sewing high. Because when the dress came off I went and hauled my window unit up from the basement.

I can’t explain the goofy pose above. But, I think it’s rather funny. Plus, you can see the fabric a little better.

Alright. That’s my first of three seersucker summer things. Up next are some pants.

More detailed review at

22 thoughts on “Pattern Review: Simplicity 3803, Day Gown

  1. Wow, I love that dress! I’m a little skeptical of maxi dresses in general but it looks fantastic on you.

  2. Cidell ~ it is very pretty and regal! I am sure you will enjoy wearing this to your party on Saturday!

  3. It looks great. I really like how you did the angled lines for the bodice. I also didn’t realize there was a keyhole opening in the pattern until I got to that part in the directions. I really think they should have highlighted that by showing the back view on the cover. Oh well, I still like the dress!

  4. The dress looks really nice on you and it looks perfect for a summer party.

  5. That *is* sugar and light! So gorgeous and fresh and I think the pose is not at all goofy — just the Gatsby spirit of the frock manifesting itself. Or something metaphysical like that …

    Man I’m jealous. I gotta post a review and do some more sewing! And also get over the wearing-a-dress angst. I’m a stay at home mom and if I can’t climb on the jungle jim in it, I get funny looks. Not that it should matter …

    Anyway, knock ’em dead at the party, you are fabulous!!

  6. Looks great on you!!I haven’t had on a floorlenth dress since my prom!But I am liking this dress.Once again great job!!

  7. You look very pretty, Cidell. And, I agree, that seersucker is very popular this summer. Lucky mag featured a dress very much like yours but in yellow. Have fun feeling cool at the party!

  8. That is so pretty I love it. I hope I get a chance to make one of these before Summer’s over. You look great!

  9. I would never have thought to use seersucker for this! I just bought some and may have to use this to make the short version of it before I make the long one! It’s gorgeous!

  10. It looks so much better than the dresses on the pattern cover! Great job!

  11. It looks stunning! I’m also planning on making a sort of floor length gown but using knit fabric instead. I see a lot of these dresses on RTW stores and I’m in love with the style! I think it goes very well with your tall and elegant figure!

  12. Gorgeous dress. I shall be making the shorter version asap and if that also has a keyhole thingy I shall be missing it out also, can’t say I particularly want one!

  13. I’ve got to smile big.
    First, the dress is very cute. Enjoy it.
    Second, I wore maxi dresses, in seersucker, in eyelet, in cottons, in the 70’s. All the time. Not “going out”, but just, all the time.
    Back then I measured hemlines either by bending my fingertips to touch my thighs (about the length of short shorts really….) or to the floor. No in between.
    No one can tell me the late 70’s/early 80’s aren’t on their way back!

  14. Cidell, it’s really lovely on you. I think you should make two more. One a short version. And one a “cocktail” version for winter holiday parties. OK?

    p.s. Did you see the white maxi dress on JCrew for $2450???

  15. Tope, I was fairly skeptical too. I feel like I’ve only seen college girls in them!

    Stephanie Lynn, I want to see yours!

    Gold, I wore knee lengh dresses for almot all my proms.

    GeekSewing, I actually saw an ad for a red and white maxi seersucker. But, of course I couldn’t find it when it was time to post. I need to resubscribe to Lucky

    Yaiann, It’s going to be lovely. It feels really new and fresh in seersucker

    Tany, I wanted knot at first with a surplice top. But, I hate wearing strapless bras. I know yours will be stunning.

    Hannah, MAKE IT. Really, it’s sooooo easy.

    Marji, THANK YOU for your tips and help. I really wanted to wear this to work but it still feels kind of ‘different’. I hope this is a dress I wear for years.

    Dawn, I did! J.Crew a few years ago redid their line and raised all of thier prices to bring a higher end image. It just has me sitting outside the stoe looking in like a lost puppy!

  16. This looks *fabulous*–as a shorty, I’m leery of the loooong dresses but you look so elegant!

  17. Oh, my – I’m in love! I like ankle length skirts, but hadn’t even crossed my mind to make a dress that length!!

  18. Wow, I like it very much! I adore the maxi length, I think it suits you.

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