How To Do Fashion: No. 21 Casablanca
A style reminiscent of the 1950s, this wrap-front dress is fitted through the shoulders, bust, and waist and flared from the hipline to the hemline, which ends just below the knee. The design has front and back shoulder princess seams; a side-front waist seam with a vertical dart emanating from it; diagonal pockets incorporated into the side panel; two-piece, three-quarter sleeves; and a center-back seam. Version 1 includes a band collar; small lapels; decorative shaped pocket flaps; 4-inch-wide, turn-back cuffs; and attached waist ties. The right waist tie is simply a 1-3/4-inch-wide rectangle. The left tie is 4 inches wide where it attaches to the left side, and then it narrows to 1-3/4 inches where it passes through a right side-seam opening. Version 2 has no collar, cuffs, or pocket flaps but it has a double-breasted, buttoned closure. Sewing instructions are not part of the pdf download but are available on the website. They are straightforward and include detailed illustrations. The cuff pattern has button markings, but the sewing directions don’t mention a closure or how to finish the cuff. Since both cuff ends extend 1 inch past the placket opening edges, use cuff links.
- On the two center-back pattern sections (D1 and D2), the numbers are transposed on sizes 32 and 34.
- When sewing the side seams, pin the pocket flaps out of the way to avoid catching them in the seam.
- Our tester recommends basting the collar and ties to the dress before attaching the facings to prevent any shifting while sewing.
- Step 36 should say, “Turn the facing to the wrong side and press.”
The pattern calls for woven fabrics, and a woven with up to 2 percent spandex would give added comfort.
(Sized European 32–54 for busts 32–54 in., hips 35–58 in.)
—Tested by Sandi Barrett, Marlborough, Massachusetts
Sewing tip: Opt for a wider hem allowance if making this dress in a heavier fabric.
This review was originally published in Threads #216, Winter 2021. Have you made this pattern? If so, be sure to share pictures in our Readers Closet gallery.
Illustrations by Cassandra Bernier.
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