Self Assembly Required

DIY dressmaking + crafts with Emily

I fixed Phaedra…

I made another Phaedra Drape from Ralph Pink though this time I chucked the instructions and did my own. (You can see my first attempt here).

It came out so much better!

I used this tie dyed blue fabric (it looks like clouds!) for it – it has a lovely drape to it and worked perfectly for this pattern. 

The pattern itself I kept exactly the same. (I’ve made an S if that’s helpful to anyone…). I’ve reworked the instructions so they make sense now so if you’re planning to make this dress in future bookmark this page!

So onto the altered instructions! 

  1. Stay stitch the front and back neck lines
  2. Mark on the stitch line on your front and back pattern pieces around the corner where the side panel is inserted.
  3. Matching the corner points of the stitch line, pin the side panels to the front/back dress.
  4. Stitch the seams from the corner point mark outwards. Cutting into the seam allowance of the main front/back piece in the corner will help you pivot the seam to fit.
  5. Add the pockets as normal.
  6. Stitch the side seams together. Leave the shoulders alone for now!
  7. Press the seam open.
  8. Pin and stitch the side seams of the neck facing
  9. Press those seams open too!
  10. Pin the facing to the neckline and armholes right sides together.
  11. Stitch together making sure not to stretch the seam as you go!
  12. Trim the seam allowance and notch.
  13. Turn the facing, pulling the straps right side out.
  14. On each front strap, turn the seam allowance of the shoulder seam, in on itself. 
  15. Push the back strap into the front strap “tube”. 
  16. Reach underneath the facing and grab the ends of the straps (the folded bit and the bit you just pushed through). You should now have the back strap encased in the front strap. 
  17. Line up the edges properly and stitch together. That’ll be along the crease you folded earlier. You should now be able to pull the strap right side around and ta-da! be done. 
  18. Pin and stitch the side seams of the hem facing, pressing the seam open. 
  19. Pin and stitch the facing to the hem of the dress right sides together.  
  20. Trim and notch the seam allowance. 
  21. Understitch the facing and press
  22. You can opt to top stitch the facings down or slipstitch down

That seems like a lot of instructions… It’s a quick dress to make though, I promise!

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  1. Lovely dress, it looks amazing on you, the instructions you have given make total sense and if I make this pattern I will use them, thank you. This dress is pure summer, gorgeous fabric and so floaty, love it!

    1. Thank you! It’s a great summer dress! Glad to see the instructions make sense. There’s always that slight worry that they’ll only make sense to me…

  2. The style of this dress is not for me, but my goodness doesn’t it suit you! Very cute little dress and a great fabric choice. Nice puzzling on the instructions too!

  3. I just read up the previous version, apart from the shrinking factor, it really wasn’t bad, I guess you could use it as a top now. This one is gorgeous, makes me want to get a copy for myself. funny enough I was recently on Ralph Pink’s website looking at drafting tutorials, when I saw this Phaedra dress, and it turns out you have just made it! keep up the good work with the blog. you’re one of my inspirations.

    1. Thanks! That’s so nice of you to say! 😍. Go for it if you like the dress. It’s a really straightforward make once you get around the dodgy instructions!

  4. Working my way through your older blog posts on my long commute to work 🙂 I love the garments you make, they’re really fashion forward! I never heard of Ralph Pink but I love his line – so sophisticated, though the problems you mention make me a bit worried to try making his stuff as a beginner (and yes it’s really misleading to show a photo of a garment that differs from the line drawing!)

    1. Yeah, his patterns are gorgeous but I think they’re best suited to an intermediate level though it’s always worth trying and seeing how you get on! I can’t compare instructions to his other work since I’ve only used the Phaedra dress so the others may be fine!

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