Have it Your Way Dress

Hello readers!

I’ve finally finished another make! (About time, I have to say…)

It’s the Have it Your Way Dress from Lauren Guthrie’s book Learn to Sew With Lauren (find out more about it here).

The book came out just in time for my birthday last year, so was number 1 on my wish list and I wasn’t disappointed. There are so many different projects in the book, I’m sure everyone would find at least a few patterns they’d like to give a go. I love the variety of projects and also the fabrics they’ve used throughout. Definitely want to try out a few of the other patterns as well.

I decided to start with the Have it Your Way Dress because I just liked everything about it.

I used a black viscose with cream dots (I ordered it from the Village Haberdashery a few months ago, but it’s not on their website anymore, so looks like they might have run out).

So, here’s the finished result:

Have it Your Way Dress front

The instructions were really easy to follow. What took me the longest (as usual) was tracing the pattern and then marking and cutting my fabric. That viscose is a slippery bugger! But I got there in the end and once I started sewing it went quicker than I thought. I’m especially pleased with the invisible zip – I think the neatest one I have achieved so far!

The only thing I found a bit confusing were the sleeves. I really liked the shape of them in the picture in the book but it took me a while to get my head around how the curved bottom edge and the facing all went together. To be honest, I’m still not quite sure I got it right, but it looks fairly similar to the picture in the book, so let’s just say I nailed it!

Have it Your Way Dress side

I cut a straight size 12 and didn’t make any fit adjustments and I think it fits really well. It doesn’t even need the belt I’m wearing in the pictures for the fit – the dress itself is a really nice shape, I just felt like the pattern needed something to break it up a bit, so paired it with a navy belt, which I think works quite well. (I have to say that I was a bit worried about the sizing as I couldn’t find a table of body and finished garment measurements anywhere – not sure if I just didn’t look properly or if they’re just not included, but luckily the fit worked out well for me.)

If I were to make it again I think I would use a contrast fabric for the collar. With this fabric you can’t see the collar that well, but here’s proof that it’s there!

Have it Your Way Dress collar

Maybe I should have made that navy as well, to tie in with the belt, but never mind. Something to bear in mind for next time.

The only other thing (and not the pattern’s fault at all) is that the fabric gets quite static and clingy. Especially as I work in an office with carpet throughout, the skirt part just ended up clinging to my legs quite a bit, which is um, not the most flattering look, let’s leave it at that. So I might have to look into making a petticoat of some sort. Something I’ve never owned, never mind made, so any tips would be greatly appreciated.

But overall I’m really happy with this dress! I wore it to work yesterday and had lots of lovely comments. (I was especially pleased about the ones from people who don’t know that I’ve taken up sewing, so they didn’t know that I had made it myself.)

Now I’m trying to decide what to make next. I have so many patterns I want to try and am a bit overwhelmed. But I think it might be another dress (not that that narrows the decision making process down by much…). Maybe something a bit more spring-like now that it’s starting to get sunnier?

I will report back once I’ve made up my mind.

Happy sewing everyone!


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