Self Assembly Required

DIY dressmaking + crafts with Emily

A tiger print Franca dress // Fibre Mood

I was gifted a piece of fabric from the latest Fabric Godmother print drop back in July/ August time and I’ve only just gotten time to use it! How is time passing so quickly???

U.K. based independent fabric shop, Fabric Godmother has been dipping their toes into the world of fabric production and has created their own range of prints. This is the third (I think?) collection of vintage prints and they don’t disappoint!

I picked the tiger mountain print on the viscose crepe substrate. The tigers reminded me of old Chinese watercolour paintings I used to see as a child in restaurants and occasionally at houses of friends and family. The star print in the background and the vibrant blue gave me real 70s vibes though! All in all it seemed like a really fun print!

Now to decide on a pattern!

For some reason I really wanted to do a shirt dress (must be those 70s/ Hawaiian shirt feels…) and so I dived into my shirt dress pattern collection. Which to be fair is pretty limited. In the end I chose to make the Franca dress from this summer’s issue of Fibre Mood. It’s a boxy midi length dress with a partial button placket and oversized sleeves. I figured the fact that since there’s not centre front seam, it would mean I wouldn’t have to worry so much about pattern matching and chopping tigers in half!

I’d also seen plenty of gorgeous versions of this pattern over the past couple of months that it seemed a perfect match!

I made an L and shortened the dress by 10cm. I also changed the sleeve slightly by gathering it and adding a cuff. I don’t know why I thought this was a good idea though – I don’t think it adds anything to the dress as with the overall volume it’s barely noticeable!

Construction was way easier than I’d anticipated. Maybe I’ve just gotten more confident with this style of button placket after making a bunch of Thread Theory Strathcona henleys last Christmas! I decided to add even more detail to the already busy pattern by adding some embroidery to the collar and the back yoke.

The collar tips got a pair of tiger eyes added on. I drew them on freehand with one of my new Frixion heat erasable pens (yes they’re as awesome as they sound) and embroidered over the top. I’d purposefully cut the back yoke to show off one single whole and off centre tiger. I wanted to make this one stand out so I went around the outline of the tiger with some black embroidery floss in a chain stitch and picked out a few other stripes and things to highlight. Both bits of embroidery were back with some iron on interfacing for strength.

To hide all the threads on the yoke, I decided to line it! I cut a second yoke piece in a lightweight cotton and fully faced it with the burrito method.

Only once I had the dress on I really just how much fabric there was! Without a belt I feel like I’m drowning in it a little though maybe that’s the look it’s supposed to have? It’s not a shape I’ve made much and I think I’ll probably find that I’ll enjoy wearing it more once I’m used to it!

About Me

Related Posts


  1. Lovely fabric – looks great on you. In general how do you find Fibre Mood patterns? I was working on a dress from last fall, the Faye dress, and wondered if there was too much ease.

    1. I’ve found them pretty true to size actually but I often check the finished measurements as a guide if I’m deciding between sizes. I’ve not made anything really fitted from them though!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.