DIY Tie Neck Dress – My $4 Experiment

I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve been shopping and picked up either a mustard colored garment or a mustard colored fabric. But, I can tell you the number of times I’ve put them back – every time. Something about this color always gives me pause, even though some part of me clearly likes it.

Front view of DIY tie neck mini dress by Sartorial Seamstress. The dress was made from a polyester crepe-like fabric from Lincraft, using Simplicity 8216.

A few weeks ago, I was at Lincraft and passed by the remnant table. I don’t usually pay much attention to remnant bins, because so often there isn’t enough fabric to make anything substantial. However, on this occasion I caught this mustard polyester out of the corner of my eye and decided to take a look (of course I did – it is mustard after all. Ha!). There was just over a yard and a half, and the fabric was $4.20 for the entire piece! So, I figured if I was ever going to take the plunge with mustard this was the time. If I made something and hated it, I was only out about $4 and a bit of time.

The entire way home, I was thinking about what I could make with this fabric. I knew 1.5 yards was plenty to make a simple shift or A-line dress, but that wasn’t going to do this fabric any favors. In my stash, I found Simplicity 8216. I’d originally purchased this pattern to make the long-sleeved blouse, but I haven’t gotten around to it yet. I liked the idea of the dress in view B, although I was hesitant about the blousy top created by the elastic waist. This isn’t a look a usually go for – I guess this dress is all about experimentation! Since I didn’t have enough fabric to add the sleeves, I decided to make it sleeveless.

This fabric was wonderful to work with. From the soft crepe-like feel and drape to the dainty diamond pattern, it’s a winner. The only downside is how much it frays. To combat this, I used all French seams. I figured that just because it only cost $4 doesn’t mean I can’t make the seams look like a million bucks.

Front view of DIY tie neck mini dress by Sartorial Seamstress. The dress was made from a polyester crepe-like fabric from Lincraft, using Simplicity 8216.

The pattern itself was extremely easy to whip up. So easy, in fact, my boyfriend was amazed to see a completed dress about a day after I brought the fabric home. I finished the arm facings with bias tape, as the pattern instructed for view D, and used the same bias tape to create the casing for the waist elastic. I didn’t make any alterations to the pattern, other than to add a couple of inches to the length and about an inch to the width of the neck tie. I like a more dramatic neck tie and probably would have made it even bigger if I had more fabric.

For only $4 and a few hours, I couldn’t be happier with how this dress turned out. It’s comfortable and easy to just throw on. In Australia right now, a sleeveless dress is perfect for the rising temperatures, but when I get home in December, I see myself throwing this on with boots and a denim jacket.

Front view of DIY tie neck mini dress by Sartorial Seamstress. The dress was made from a polyester crepe-like fabric from Lincraft, using Simplicity 8216.

I’m planning to make the shirt in view C with some beautiful green silk I recently picked up. I may make this dress again with the sleeves, although I think I would add a few inches to the length and just cinch the waist with a belt instead of elastic.

The final verdict on mustard –

I love this dress, but I think this might be all the mustard my wardrobe needs at the moment.

Happy Sewing!

Front view of DIY tie neck mini dress by Sartorial Seamstress. The dress was made from a polyester crepe-like fabric from Lincraft, using Simplicity 8216.Front view of DIY tie neck mini dress by Sartorial Seamstress. The dress was made from a polyester crepe-like fabric from Lincraft, using Simplicity 8216.Front view of DIY tie neck mini dress by Sartorial Seamstress. The dress was made from a polyester crepe-like fabric from Lincraft, using Simplicity 8216.Front view of DIY tie neck mini dress by Sartorial Seamstress. The dress was made from a polyester crepe-like fabric from Lincraft, using Simplicity 8216.

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2 comments

  1. Love it! And your writing makes me feel we are having a lovely conversation and you are not all the way on the other side of the world!

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