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Projects & Patterns

Pattern Review: Viki Sews Charlize Dress

Threads #219, Fall 2022
Sewn by Norma Bucko. Tested by Pam Howard, Newnan, Georgia. Viki Sews Charlize Dress. Fabric: polyester crepe, MoodFabrics.com.

Sophisticated Sewing Challenge


Skill Level:

Rated for advanced sewers. The sewing is time-consuming but not difficult; the hardest part is turning the narrow shoulder straps. Instructions are accurate and detailed and the guide sheet includes a photo for each step. Separate pattern pieces for the dress and faux-welt linings and front left and right facings are slightly smaller to accommodate the turn of the cloth. There are multiple match points to help in assembly.

Size Range and Fitting:

European sizes 34 to 52 to fit busts 31-1/2 inches to 45-3/4 inches and hips 34 inches to 48 inches in four height groups from 5-foot-1 to 6 feet (each size in your chosen height is sold separately). The pattern includes finished measurements for the sleeve and garment length, based on height choice. Princess seams in front and back can help with fitting.


Dress-weight wool, gabardine, and wool crepe, with rayon or viscose for the lining. Other options might be linen, denim, silk matka, and four-ply silk crepe. Avoid knits and sheers.

shoulder strap and faux pocket welt dress details

Style and Sewing Details:

This fully lined, semifitted dress has a mock crossover front, princess seams, two-piece set-in sleeves, and center-back zipper. The faux double-breasted front opening has an asymmetrical shaped lapel and faux welt pocket on the neckline edge, with pocket flaps at the hipline. Note the square neckline, curved armhole sections (self-fabric lined for a clean finish) and narrow shoulder straps held in place at the shoulder seams with self-fabric carriers.

  • Read through the instructions carefully. Note that most seam allowances are 3/8 inch wide, but some vary. The center back has a 5/8-inch-wide seam allowance.
  • Pay close attention to the assembly of the shaped armhole facings to be sure you sew the correct seams together and end up with a clean finish on the inside of the garment.
  • Our tester recommends making a muslin, ensuring the fit is accurate, and increasing the side seam allowances for future alterations.
  • For a formal look, try satin on the lapel and faux welt pockets.

This review was originally published in Threads #219, Fall 2022. Have you made this pattern? If so, be sure to share pictures in our Readers Closet gallery.

Photos: Jack Deutsch. Illustrations: Cassandra Bernier.


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