April 2, 2013
My brother is getting married in just 3 weeks and of coarse I thought it would be an awesome idea to make my own dress for the occasion (I know what was I thinking).  I am not in the wedding party and it’s a somewhat casual affair – the reception is being held at my sister’s beautiful home for instance – so there is a little less pressure.  My soon to be sister-in-law is of Mexican heritage and my brother has spent a lot of time in Mexico so the wedding has a somewhat Mexican type of subtle theme going on (they are both artists so I swear they can pull it off ).  The couple wants the family to dress in bright colors, heavy in marigold just so that we look cohesive in the family photos.  
This is the fabric that I bought:

I really need to get going on this, like today, but I am having a really hard time deciding which pattern to use.  Here are my two contenders:

Vogue 1225

I would probably belt this dress, and maybe even wear a cardi or try to lengthen the sleeves.  I would also probably lengthen the skirt a bit to hit more just below my knees.


  • breastfeeding friendly neckline
  • lots of gathers – more flattering on my current body shape
  • more modern cut


  • pockets – would just omit them
  • neck tie in the back – would maybe close up the back and exchange the tie for elastic?
  • sleeve length – it may be cold, plus I just think that more of an elbow length sleeve would be more flattering on me right now.

Vogue 8379

I would do version A (no collar), but do an elbow length sleeve without the detail.  I might belt it too instead of the sash.


  • a well beloved pattern by all so I know it would sew up like a dream
  • simple classic style
  • flattering cut
  • breastfeeding friendly


  • a little conservative for my taste
  • my fabric may still be a little too thin for this style

And recommendations?

Which do you think is more my style?

If I made the more conservative one are there any changes you can think of to make it more modern?

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  • Reply well-crafted April 2, 2013 at 12:06 PM

    Vogue 1027 is a really cute pattern!

    • Reply Kelli Ward April 2, 2013 at 1:37 PM

      i agree. i really thought about this pattern and I even own it, but i think that my bosoms are just a little too full right now to wear this. i think i would feel self conscious.

  • Reply Peter Lappin April 2, 2013 at 12:20 PM

    I think a print would work much better with 8379, and you could always underline the fabric. The flowers will be lost in 1225, imo. I always prefer simpler lines with a strong print.

    • Reply Kelli Ward April 2, 2013 at 1:38 PM

      good point. i hadnt really though about the print being lost.

  • Reply gingermakes April 2, 2013 at 12:27 PM

    I wonder if it’s possible to stitch down the wrap bodice to an elasticized gathered skirt like V1225. That way you would have the sleeve option, but it would look a little younger than 8379 looks straight out of the packet. Either way it’s going to be a gorgeous dress– the print is killer and will look lovely with your hair and complexion.

    • Reply Kelli Ward April 2, 2013 at 1:39 PM

      im glad that you know what i mean about the other one being a little mature looking. its a great idea to combine two looks.

  • Reply Helen April 2, 2013 at 12:59 PM

    I like the Vogue dress. I think it’s smarter and therefore more “wedding appropriate” (even for a casual affair). It’s also more straightforward as there are fewer adjustments to make. You probably don’t need to add to your stress levels just now! 🙂 It might be a bit more conservative, but it would look amazing with that print (which is beautiful)! And tbh people will just be amazed you’ve managed to brush your hair, never mind anything else!

    We went to a wedding when small boy was 5 wks and I’m sure most people were amazed I hadn’t turned up in pyjamas!

    • Reply Kelli Ward April 2, 2013 at 1:39 PM

      that is true. although 5 weeks is way more impressive.

  • Reply knottygnome April 2, 2013 at 1:17 PM

    i like the second one. it seems more appropriate for a wedding plus it’s simpler, which would enable you to finish it faster/more easily.

    • Reply Kelli Ward April 2, 2013 at 1:40 PM

      time is certainly an issue so that is a good point.

  • Reply Christina April 2, 2013 at 1:28 PM

    I’m more traditional so I’m naturally drawn to the second dress, but I also think that even though it’s not your style as much, it will look nice for a wedding and really make your fabric pop better than the first. Plus, it seems like you’d need to make fewer alterations and that might be helpful if you’re pressed for time. Either way, you’re going to look awesome!

    • Reply Kelli Ward April 2, 2013 at 1:40 PM

      fewer alterations is a big plus in my book. especially with my time constraints!

  • Reply Meli April 2, 2013 at 1:44 PM

    I don’t want to try to judge what kind of fabric you’ve bought from one picture, but it looks like the first pattern would be best suited for a knit, where the second could work with different types of fabric. And I agree with Peter, the print might get lost amid the folds in the pattern. Both are definitely pretty, though!

    • Reply Kelli Ward April 2, 2013 at 2:20 PM

      its a really thin knit fabric. i am thinking that i might need to line it if i do the wrap dress.

  • Reply liza jane April 2, 2013 at 2:02 PM

    Wrap dresses don’t have many fitting issues so if it were me I’d go with the second dress. Plus it would be easy to do a longer sleeve if you wanted to. Either way, I’m sure the dress will look awesome! That marigold is such a cheerful color.

    • Reply Kelli Ward April 2, 2013 at 2:15 PM

      i just looked at your large print wrap maternity dress again. perhaps if it did sleeves like those it would look a lot better.

  • Reply Miranda April 2, 2013 at 2:13 PM

    I think with elbow-length fitted sleeves that wrap dress would be instantly modernized. What about reshaping the skirt a tiny bit to be a little more straight, and less of a circle skirt? I like that shape better for a wrap. Then with a belt rather than the tie, you’d be set! Tried and true pattern, quick sew.

    That print you chose is fantastic!


    • Reply Kelli Ward April 2, 2013 at 2:16 PM

      thanks miranda. yeah, i think your suggestions are spot on. pretty much everyone says the wrap dress. you guys are totally pushing me that way.

    • Reply Suzanne April 3, 2013 at 7:37 AM

      I agree with Miranda. I also think your print — and the way you style it, will make it look younger and more cool. You could always line the bodice with a pale colored, lightweight jersey, and just wear a half-slip on the bottom…if you line the skirt too it may end up heavy and pull down on the bodice. I’m big on slips! If you don’t have one, find a piece of silk in your stash that’s big enough, sew up one edge and insert an elastic for a waist. Doesn’t have to be pretty. No one will see it.

  • Reply lin3arossa April 2, 2013 at 3:09 PM

    The first one looks beyond casual too me, it’s almost frumpy! Or maybe it’s vogue’s photography and I would change my mind to see it made up? the second one is conservative but since your fabric isn’t at all, I think you could go for it. Underline the bodice if the fabric is too thin.

    • Reply Kelli Ward April 3, 2013 at 7:45 PM

      i have seen the first one made up and it looks a lot better. i did get lining for the bodice too.

  • Reply Clio April 2, 2013 at 3:16 PM

    Wow, OK. I am totally going to go out on a limb and break the trend here.

    The wrap dress is what I would wear to work, not to a joyous occasion like my brother’s wedding – especially not the wedding of two artists with a mexican sub-theme where they have asked the family to wear a fantastically fun and bright color like marigold! In my mind the 1225 is MUCH more appropriate for the kind of event you described. So, I’m with Ginger that if you make the wrap dress, you need to make it more fun. It reads as mature because it is a serious, work-appropriate pattern.

    Also, the vogue reads as more fun because it is sleeveless. There is a reason why most women’s formal, semi-formal and dress clothing does not have sleeves – it immediately makes them more serious and sedate. If your concern is the weather, I would go with a bright colored shrug instead of worrying about how to add sleeves.

    Sorry if I’ve just opened a can of worms. I’m sure whatever dress you make will be lovely.

    • Reply Kelli Ward April 3, 2013 at 7:47 PM

      you are right about the business style of the second one. maybe thats what i don’t like about it. and i have never thought about the sleeve thing. i don’t know about sleeveless on me right now, but maybe i could just lengthen them by a couple of inches to make a kimono like cap.

  • Reply katherine h April 2, 2013 at 4:36 PM

    Your fabric is just gorgeous

  • Reply emmasfavouritethings April 2, 2013 at 4:38 PM

    Sorry Clio – I agree with the rest of the posters that the wrap dress is the way to go. I don’t think you can ever go wrong with a classic shape in a fun print. I think you’ll look gorgeous in it!

  • Reply LoveTheWord Frock April 2, 2013 at 5:37 PM

    I’m with Clio, Peter has an excellent point about the print, but I think wrap dresses can look frumpy. I avoid them and I’m older than you. I think the Vogue pattern is more youthful.

    • Reply Kelli Ward April 3, 2013 at 7:48 PM

      it is more youthful. maybe that is what drew me to it. also, thanks for commenting so i could find your blog.

  • Reply Reana Louise April 2, 2013 at 5:56 PM

    I think both would look beautiful but that Vogue 8379 might show the print a little better, is easier to move with adjusting weight, and while you could probably pull off those 1225 gathers I’m pretty sure I’d look like a frumpelstiltskin so I’m gravitating towards 8379. Ok, I’m locking my vote in for B! But seriously, I can’t wait to see whatever you make x

    • Reply Kelli Ward April 3, 2013 at 7:48 PM

      i can’t wait to see what i make either! sure hope i don’t look like a frumpelstitlskin.

  • Reply Tess April 2, 2013 at 6:52 PM

    I like the first one better. Not really a fan of how it’s presented on the model, but I’ve seen it on others around the internet and it appeals to me more than the wrap. Can’t wait to see how it turns out. I think it will be gorgeous either way. The wedding sounds like it will be a lot of fun.

    • Reply Kelli Ward April 3, 2013 at 7:49 PM

      yes, the pic on the pattern isn’t the best, but like you i have seen it around and it sews up pretty nicely.

  • Reply April 2, 2013 at 7:05 PM

    For me the first thing I thought was the 1225 is more flattering/hides the lower tum, v important, I think it would suit the fabric more as well. Have fun at the fiesta!

    • Reply Kelli Ward April 3, 2013 at 7:50 PM

      i love that you called it a fiesta. im totally going to call it that too now.

  • Reply Jano April 3, 2013 at 12:25 AM

    I agree with Clio, I much prefer 1225 (I own it but have yet to make it). It sounds like a fairly unconservative wedding so I would be inclined to go with the more youthful version. Which on would you wear post wedding?

    • Reply Kelli Ward April 3, 2013 at 7:50 PM

      i think i would wear 1225 more post wedding – good point.

  • Reply margiwarg April 3, 2013 at 12:57 AM

    I totally agree with Clio, I definitely prefer 1225, I think it’s much funner and younger than the 8379. The skirt portion in particular, I think the type of wrap skirt on the 8379 seems very officey/bland. I’ve actually made the 1225 myself, and found it to be super flattering. If anything, use the skirt portion of the 1225 – it uses a tonne of fabric, but would be good with a thin knit. You can see on the model that the arm holes are quite big. I ended up adding 1.5″ band sleeves which actually look pretty cute, but if I made it again would probably make the arm holes smaller before cutting.

    From looking around at both patterns on the internet, there are actually examples where the same person has made both of the patterns, and imho the 1225 looks a lot cuter!

    • Reply Kelli Ward April 3, 2013 at 7:51 PM

      good tip on the arm holes. they are super low. i saw that mentioned in other reveiws too.

  • Reply sallie oleta barbee April 4, 2013 at 10:30 AM

    I might be a bit late to the party – but I think that you really can’t go wrong with either of these dresses! I love a good wrap dress, or faux wrap in the case of the top one. The top dress is certainly ‘younger’ and all the gathering could be really flattering. But a classic wrap dress like the bottom one could have a very long life in your wardrobe too, post-nursing, because it’s so easy to just wrap it tighter or looser depending on the fit you need. And if I were you I might just wear a half-slip with it instead of lining it. Saves time and fabric!

    • Reply Kelli Ward April 5, 2013 at 5:42 PM

      I love the thought about being able to tighten it later post nursing. i didn’t even think about that. i keep thinking about your wrap dress and how awesome it was.

  • Reply Kelli April 5, 2013 at 9:55 AM

    I’m late to the party and I’m sure you’ve decided and sewing up, but I have to say I love the first one. I mean, like I’m off to look it up for me and I look NOTHING like the model. I’m not sure my body type (large chest and a bit heftier than the model) but it’s just so fun.

    Both dresses are great options and I think both will look great on you. Can’t wait to see what you decided. That fabric is killer! Perfect for a wedding. 🙂

    • Reply Kelli Ward April 5, 2013 at 5:45 PM

      Kelli – Alabama Chanin did an amazing red version of this dress that first got me hooked. You should check it out.

  • Reply lsaspacey April 5, 2013 at 2:14 PM

    I don’t know if someone hasn’t already said this, but the first dress with elastic waist will actually be a faster make because there may be adjustments needed for the wrap dress in order for you to feel secure in it. You really don’t want to worry about wardrobe malfunctions wrangling children at a wedding, do you?

    • Reply Kelli Ward April 5, 2013 at 5:46 PM

      very good point. its not the kind of wedding where i will just be standing around. wardrobe malfunctions would not be good.

  • Reply Mary S April 8, 2013 at 10:41 AM

    No way, I’ve just bought this fabric too!! I’m making mine up into a MN ruched maternity skirt, look forward to seeing what you make with yours!! I’m too much of a novice to give any advice, but good luck and I’m sure you’ll look amazing in whatever you decide.

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