A Travel Dress for France

IMG_4487Did I tell you all that I’m headed to France in September? I’m beyond excited. We’re headed to the Dordogne region followed by a visit to Paris which will definitely include some fabric shopping. I’ve started a packing list and this dress is versatile enough to earn a place in my suitcase.

There’s something about dressing in a bright colors that makes things feel…fun! Not sure if there’s a scientific reason for that, but this dress will be a favorite just because the fabric makes me feel light and happy! This knit from Art Gallery is 95% cotton, 5% spandex. I love the name of the print… Frutteria Bleu. I found it in a shop in Alexandria Virginia that I found on a recent trip to DC.. the Stitch Sew Shop. Their natural fabric collection is nicely curated. I wish I’d had room in my suitcase for more.


This was an easy dress to make. I used the same method I used for my Day/Night Challenge cocktail dress (here). I took a favorite knit dress pattern, shortened it a bit, then added a skirt.


For the bodice, I used McCalls 6886, a TNT pattern that everyone loves because it never fails…it’s an easy sew, the fit is great and it’s always a dress you want to wear!! Since this fabric is so special I could not risk a failure.

This pattern is perfect to embellish, modify, lengthen, shorten…whatever. It’s one of those patterns that really transforms with your fabric choice.

I modified by adding a skirt. To do this, I cut version A of the dress, but shortened it by 8″. That still left the dress bodice quite long, a choice I made so that the skirt would feel more like a ruffle…less like a traditional drop waist dress. To make the skirt/ruffle, I cut a wide (20″) swath of fabric whose width was 1.5 times the circumference of the hem of the shortened dress. I simply gathered that long piece of fabric with a long stitch, then sewed it to the bodice of the dress.


Because of the long bodice and deep ruffle, I wanted this dress to be long…midi length. In the summer,  I love how a long dress moves in the breeze. It makes me feel…light!



Happy sewing and thanks for stopping by!




14 thoughts on “A Travel Dress for France

  1. Great choice of fabric and great choice of destination ! Dordogne is a lovely place to spend time and relax, there are plenty of castles and beautiful sceneries, I’m sure you’ll love it!

  2. How fab that you’re going to France! This lovely dress will definitely be a super addition to your travel capsule.
    It looks like a lovely comfortable, as well as stylish dress and I love that you used a basic tee shirt dress pattern. I got that pattern recently in a goodie bag at Stitch Room Sewcial and your version proves what a versatile starting point the pattern is.

    1. Thanks, Diane! What a brilliant pattern choice for a goody bag because this pattern can take you just about anywhere! Can’t wait to see your version.

  3. Beautiful dress to go to a beautiful place. We are doing a Provence walking trip in October so much of my packing will be outdoor active wear but I too am planning a dress. And isn’t that Alexandria shop so dear.

    1. Oh, I’ve always wanted to go to Provence and a walking trip sounds wonderful! Sounds like your suitcase will have a few things mine won’t have. Yes that shop is so great…the people that work there are too! it’s going to be a regular stop when I’m in the DC area!!

  4. I love this dress! Cute fabric. This dress will be perfect for your upcoming trip!

  5. The dropped waist is so cute on you! Art Gallery knits are so nice to work with and even nicer to wear! I just made a wee peplum top for my daughter with one of their funky stripes. Have a wonderful trip!

    1. Thanks, Elizabeth! Art gallery makes such great prints for kids that are so comfy..I’m sure it’s one of her favorites just like this dress will be one of mine!

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