Blue Rayon Staple Dress


Today I’m participating in the Staple Dress Blog Tour that’s been happening all week long to celebrate the fact that the Staple Dress pattern is now in PRINT! The tour wraps up today over here and at Sew Caroline, so thanks for stopping by! I’m so lucky to know April Rhodes (the designer of the Staple Dress) in real life; she is such a dear friend. She has to be one of the sweetest and most authentic human beings on the planet. In addition to a huge heart, she has a great passion for sewing, and she is clearly focused on creating lovely, basic patterns so that others can share her passion, as well.

Staple Dress in PRINT

Staple Dress (back cover) in print

The Staple Dress has been a HUGE hit this year, and it’s easy to see why: April’s directions are easy to follow; she adds helpful hints along the way; and the pattern pieces are well-designed, with just the right amount of ease. It’s obvious she worked hard to achieve a great fit here. I’m thrilled that there’s been such a great response to this pattern, and I’m even more excited about the new patterns she has coming!


Today I wanted to show off my latest Staple Dress creation (you can see the top I made for Spring Top Sewalong here)!

This dress was made with a clearance rayon I randomly found at a tent sale a few years ago for $2/yard. It’s a polyester rayon (not cotton like the rayon challis I talk about in this post from earlier this week), so it’s not quite as soft and lovely and flowy as the cotton rayons, but I just couldn’t pass up this print. Have you ever had that moment where you’re staring at a fabric, and you can’t decide whether the print is really awesome or completely ugly? Yeah, that. But I’m so glad I didn’t pass it up, because about a year later the eighties decided to come back, and now this kind of thing is totally hot again. Who knew? (Not me. I’m the person who scoffed when I saw skinny jeans come back into style. *ducks and looks sheepish*)


Anyway, I personally think the Staple Dress looks amazing in rayon, since the flowy nature of the fabric helps give it a great silhouette, and I love how this turned out! It will be perfect for a date night since it’s a wee bit scandalous on me in the Length Department, which means Mr Rae thinks it’s perfect (Note to self: you are roughly 2 feet taller than April. Plan accordingly next time and add a few inches). It’s not TOO short, because I almost always wear my dresses with leggings or skinny jeans underneath, so that’s probably how I’ll wear this one more often than not once the weather cools down again.


I made the pattern with the hi-lo hem option (there’s also a straight hem), which I love; the dress went together like a breeze, and I even surprised myself a bit by sewing French seams on the entire thing — yes, even around the pockets. Extra nice.


You can find the print version of the Staple Dress on April’s website.

And here are all of the stops on the Staple Dress blog tour for you to enjoy:

Mon. July 8th:  Aneela Hoey –  Comfortstitching
Tues. July 9th: Katy Jones – I’m a Ginger Monkey
Wed. July 10th: Jeni Baker – In Color Order
Thurs. July 11th: Julie Herman – Jaybird Quilts
Fri. July 12th:  Carrie Bloomston – SUCH Designs
Sat. July 13th:  Caroline – Sew Caroline & Rae – Made By Rae

319 thoughts on “Blue Rayon Staple Dress

  1. I have been relentlessly hitting ‘refresh’ on your blog after seeing these pics pop up on flickr this morning!!! It looks great and works so well with that fabric! I’m wondering how many lines of shirring did you do? I just saw a tutorial on french seams WITH pockets, I need to go find it.

    ps and of course I’d love to win the pattern! 🙂

  2. A fabulous dress! I love the fabric and the fact that you did all French seams!! a motivation for us all ! thank you!

    • hah yes, Carolyn, I wondered if that would torture anyone, to post the pictures before the post… You’ve discovered my secret — I always upload to Flickr before I post so you can usually see what’s coming over there first. 🙂

      Also: was it Whipstitch who had the french seam pocket tutorial? I thought I saw a pic on IG but then when I went over to her blog I couldn’t find it. Let me know if you find it!!

      And Lee: April includes the instructions for french seams in the pattern — it’s amazing how simple they are once you try them!!

  3. since it is ALL YOUR FAULT that i am now using a sewing machine…am i allowed to enter this?

  4. This fabric is far from ugly…I love it! And your feminine red shoes are awesome!!! I have been an admirer of this pattern and your dress is no different, it turned out great!

  5. Gorgeous! Love that Mr. Rae loves the too short skirts! My mister is the same way so I can never trust his judgment when trying on clothes.

  6. Argh you look awesome in this! And frankly due to the Washi, I figure if something fits your body type well, it should fit mine too. Would love to give the paper pattern a whirl – even have some rayon to sew with!

    PS – the length looks great / making out imminent.

  7. Lovely dress! I’m just getting into using French seams, since I don’t have a serger and the zigzag stitch on my machine is its least favourite setting. I haven’t yet tried doing them for an entire garment, though.

  8. Great dress and I love that print. Maybe I’m fully indoctrinated, but it doesn’t look so 80s to me (but these muted florals all around certainly do)!

  9. Thank you SO much for the giveaway! I was just saying last night that the staple dress may need to be my next purchase…

  10. Wow you look fab! I love how your dress turned out, and the print is awesome! I’ve recently started sewing for myself and just can’t stop! I’d love to try this pattern!

  11. Just bought some lovely yellow rayon challis to make a dress like this! Would love the pattern!

  12. I usually shy away from clothes-making as it seems so difficult, but I’ve seen so many lovely versions of this dress this week and I love how they all look that this seems like a good one to get into….

  13. Loving the look! I don’t have the figure for this dress, but you sure do!!
    Can I ask, as someone who barely leaves the house and NEVER follows trends (I just don’t get them!), is it 80s fabrics, patterns, designs or what that’s back? I’ve just been given a load of back issues of mags and included were patterns that are 80s – are they worth me looking to make, not just redesign?

  14. Love all the versions of this dress that I have seen and am hoping to win one of the giveaways so I can make my own. Totally love your print too! 🙂 FYI I made fun of my sister when she started wearing skinny jeans and leggings and now they’re my fave articles of clothing

  15. Despite the fact that Sew to Speak is my hometown fabric store, I haven’t yet bought the pattern. I am so glad she’s made such a splash, and I’d love to win her pattern.

  16. I’ve had my eye on this pattern for a while. I’d love to give it a try. Thanks for the chance to win one.

  17. This seems like a great basic dress and I would love to have pattern. I think the drapey, flowy rayon is the way to go!

  18. I love ugly/pretty fabric:) I now also love the Staple Dress! And it looks great on you…show some knees every now and then!

  19. Beautiful dress – most of my sewing is for the kids – this pattern might motivate me to sew for myself!

  20. This is perfect on you and I’d love to win the pattern and try it myself! Thanks for the chance!

  21. Oooh ooh ooh. Me me me me me me me. I’d love to try the Staple Dress. I’m on a roll with sewing for me. RE: Mr Rae, I just made a wearable muslin tank that was too hubba hubba on the neckline (first try) and my husband requested I wear it often. I think I’ll make some pajama bottoms for it as that is the one and only way I’d be wearing it for reals.

  22. Ah yes, the ugly/amazing print problem. I think you made the right call on this one! Yay for international give-aways.

  23. What a great dress! I’ve been trying to sew more for myself lately, this would be a great addition to my wardrobe. thanks for the chance

  24. AWESOME print! (How’s that for 80s speak?) Great pattern too! (And I’m thrilled that a mum of your age went for the shorter hem! ) 😉

  25. I’ve recently got an itch to start sewing for myself (once I have this baby!). This pattern would be a perfect addition to my collection!

  26. What a fabulous dress!! That fabric looks fantastic! Thanks for the note about needing to add length to the dress as I’m tall too. 🙂 Thanks for a chance to win this great pattern! 🙂

  27. That fabric is perfect with that dress. Love how simple the dress is, yet it looks so put together! Well done.

  28. Oh, I totally love that print! But I do understand the “you can’t decide whether the print is really awesome or completely ugly” issue, it has happened to me as well…
    Thanks for the chance to win a pattern I’ve wanted for a while, but haven’t been able to afford!

  29. Awesome dress! Love the print! Thanks for the giveaway!
    cameron dot lawracy at gmail dot com

  30. Gorgeous dress and I feel the same about hems that length… perfect for date night but way to short for chasing toddlers in day to day life. 🙂

  31. I love that fabric! I just passed up buying some fabric yesterday because I could NOT decide if it was great or hideous! Thanks for the chance to win, I would love to give it a try 🙂

  32. What a great dress…I’d love to win this pattern!

    And don’t feel bad … I also scoffed at skinny jeans for at least a year. It’s embarrassing now that I almost exclusively wear skinnies…

  33. I love your Staple Dress in rayon! I’d love to make several of these dresses with my stash fabric. What fun!

  34. It seems like this dress would be a staple for my wardrobe. I love the fabric you chose. I can’t wait to make one!

  35. I love that this simple dress pattern looks so different and really reflects the different styles of the makers in this blog tour!

  36. I love how your version turned out! I have some blue and white ikat fabric I’d love to use to make one. It looks like such a great pattern!

  37. This is fabulous and so hip.. I’m thinking this pattern will pair nicely with boots in fall!

  38. I’ve been eying this pattern for a while now trying to figure out what fabric I would use before buying it. Thanks for the giveaway!

  39. this is the most gorgeous dress ever! i love the cut, length, everything about it. would love to win this one so i can sew something all for me.

  40. I can’t decide if the dress would look ok on me or not and so of course I have to make bit to find out8). I would love to win!

  41. I have been under a summer vacation rock! How did I miss this great pattern? Would love to win. :~)

  42. What a gorgeous dress! It looks great on you! I noticed the fabric on your fantastic post a few days ago and I had wanted to ask you about it. I’m slightly sad to hear that I can’t pick it up on-line somewhere. Alas!
    I totally scoffed at the eighties revival in the beginning too, but I must admit that I’ve gone for it. Hence the fabric coveting! Anyway… I’m rambling… I’ve been eyeing the staple dress pattern and thinking I should make one too. I would defintely love to win a pattern. Hee hee.

  43. I love it when print versions of these awesome pdf patterns are available! I am always nervous about scaling when I print at home.

  44. Love the dress, I think that pattern looks great but can see why you worried when first finding it! Would love to make one myself, so fingers crossed…

  45. Wow! You look great in this dress and I love this style. How have I missed this? It’s super cute and you had me sold when you said pockets! Thanks for a chance to win this great pattern!

  46. Lovely dress and you look great (as always).
    Thanks for the chance to win (even though I NEVER win–limp kermit arms here).

  47. Rae, you look gorgeous! and I love the fabric choice. Cannot wait to make one for myself to celebrate the end of breastfeeding….

  48. I’ve been admiring this pattern, it would be wonderful to win a copy of it. Keeping my fingers crossed. Also I love the print of the fabric you used.

  49. OH THIS IS AWESOME – so work appropriate and yet great for out on the town!! I love pieces that can work double time

  50. What a sweetie dress! After having a baby, 11 months later I still haven’t sewn anything (for me or him) and well, this looks like a good place to start! A flashback tee has been on a to-do list for a long time too. Better get that.

  51. It looks stunning and you have the legs for it! I’d love a copy and would be wearing it with leggings or skinny jeans!

  52. I would love to make this dress for my daughter! Love the belt you paired up with your dress!

  53. Love the dress! My favorite version is the one in the pictures on the back of the pattern envelope; beautiful fabric. Thanks for the chance 🙂

  54. LOVE the dress, pattern, and that BELT! So cute.
    Also, that pattern looks crazy fun!

  55. Oh I really want this pattern! I’ve been dying to sew for myself and I think I can handle this, but I tend to spend all of my money on patterns for my daughters. Here’s hoping….

  56. OH goodness, I kinda like it short…but like you, I almost always wear leggings or skinny jeans 🙂 I hope I win hehe

  57. I like the high-low hem option on you, but I’m not sure I could do it for myself. I usually wind up feeling like I need to pull my skirt down 😉

  58. I have been sewing a lot for my wee girl, this dress pattern just might bring my return to sewing for myself!

  59. Lovely dress and the fabric is super cute! Definitely not ugly 80s! I guess since I’m 5’10” I’ll be adding a few inches to the length too, but it looks great on you!

  60. Love that dress and love a printed pattern for grown up clothes… Only because I hate taping a million bits of paper together!!

  61. This is a cute dress! I think it looks simple enough that I can practice altering the pattern for plus-sizes. (I may need a size up from the XXL.)

  62. I would love to win. I just got back to my pre-pregnancy weight and I’d like to do some sewing for me (not the kids) for a change!

  63. Oh my. I just stumbled upon your blog and am dying that I didn’t know about it before. Can’t wait to start digging in. And, I would love to win the pattern!

  64. This dress looks great! Love the print.
    I’d love to win the pattern – it looks like something that even I might be able to make successfully!

  65. This is my favorite version of the staple dress yet! Love it. Such a cute pattern and you’re right: that fabric is fun! Thanks for the chance!

  66. I love your version of this dress!!! Everything you make is so great, but I really love this one. It looks so comfy yet nice enough to wear out to dinner. Love it!!! And would love to win the pattern!!! 🙂

  67. What a lovely dress! I’ve just started sewing on a vintage Bernina, after not having sewn since high school – this would be a great first dress, plus I’d love to try French seams!

  68. Ooh, I love your version of this! It’s the first time I’ve seen the hi-lo hem and really loved it. Love your sandals too!

  69. I want to thank you Rae for resurrecting the sewist in me after a very long hiatus. You inspired me with the Washi dress (I made 3 so far) and I get compliments every time I wear them! I feel so good in them.
    Love ya xo
    Oh and yes, of course, I would love to win the Staple dress pattern too!

  70. I think your dress looks great on you! I would love to try this pattern. I haven’t made a dress for myself since the 80’s! Thank you for the giveaway. I clicked on over and the date night dress looks great too!

  71. Rae you are beautiful and this is one of my favorite versions of the staple dress! Rayon really makes this dress and I would love a chance to try it out, thanks.

  72. Once again, LOVE IT!!! I just so look forward to your posts when you sew for yourself. You have such an eye for prints! I have been wanting to try out this pattern too……

  73. I’ve been lusting over this pattern all week, and now a chance to win the pattern? Just made my weekend 🙂 Thanks!

  74. I am afraid of shirring and of rayon, but you make it look so easy and so good that I just might have to give it a try! Love the print and also that belt and shoes.

  75. what a great silhouette! love the look of this dress and it would be great to make a couple varieties to wear w/leggings when volunteering in the classroom.

  76. I’m a beginner sewer and this dress looks like the perfect project for my skills. I would love to give the pattern a go.

    Thanks for the opportunity!

  77. I would love to win this. I am hoping to learn to sew and make all my clothes next year. This would be a great start to my journey.

  78. The dress looks awesome, would love to win as can see myself wearing this with leggings in winter. Great fabric choice.

  79. Love the dress you made! And the pattern looks like something I NEED to sew! Thanks for the opportunity!

  80. This dress looks great on you! Love the fabric…I would definitely also wear this with leggings when the weather gets colder!

  81. It’s such a cute dress, I’d love to win! I really need to expand my one dress pattern and be more adventurous with fabrics! Thanks for the giveaway 🙂

  82. Beautiful dress! I actually love the length and don’t think it’s scandalous at all. You look great!

  83. Beautiful top and dress! I have been eyeing it for awhile. Just may make me venture into sewing for myself instead of only for my kids.

  84. this looks like it could be a very forgiving post-maternity dress. so simple and still looks put together. great job rae!!
    would love to win a paper copy!

  85. Such a cute dress! I haven’t ventured into making clothes yet, but I’m definitely going to check out her patterns as options.

  86. This pattern caught my eye a week or two ago online, and it was love at first sight. The Staple dress is aptly named: it’s a go-to dress that’s has endless variations. you can dress it up or down, the fabric choices are endless, I could see making multiple versions in seasonal fabrics. absolutely love it! your version is fantastic, and you look hot in it! bet Mr. Rae smiles when he sees you in it. thanks so much, love your website.

  87. I want that dress!!! I think my favorite part is that it has a hi lo hem. I can’t believe that was bargain bin fabric! Love it!

  88. This looks like perfect summer dress territory. And my stash is full of those ugly/awesome fabrics!!

  89. So exciting! I am trying to update my back-to-work wardrobe, this would be an amazing addition.

  90. Lovely! I have had my eye on the print pattern for a while, but winning one would be great!

  91. oh I love this pattern having stumbled across you on instagram 🙂 would love to venture into dressmaking and make one for myself!

  92. Love this! Think it would be difficult to migrate the waist up? I’m more of an empire girl 🙂

  93. What a fantastic dress for any wardrobe. I’d love the chance to win a copy. We are in the middle of our winter at the moment, but I really need to sew for me and get ready for summer.

  94. I scoffed at the skinny jeans trend to. And at the high-low trend. And now i love them both 🙂

  95. I’ve been sewing geranium dresses for my little girls like crazy! I love it, but it would be nice to have a project to sew for this momma to wear! 🙂

  96. I’ve been dying to make this dress! It looks so universally flattering and easy to grade up for plus sizes as well!

  97. I love the print! What a great version of the dress. That’s the one I would start with — hi/lo hem with pockets.

  98. I am in love with this pattern and have the most perfect rayon challis material I have been saving for the right pattern, eeeek! If I don’t win I will be hopping on over to buy it anyway. Thanks Rae, you always inspire 🙂

  99. Aha! A friend suggested this very pattern to me two days ago! I love the print and suggestions for cotton rayon. I’m newish to sewing and haven’t tackled rayon (yet!).

  100. That fabric is adorable! It’s a great pattern. Everyone’s dresses have been so much fun to see.

  101. Awesome! I’m getting married in a couple months (very low key) and am making a simple dress to wear…this could be it 🙂

  102. OMG, I can’t believe I missed this by 12 minutes! Perhaps I still have a chance! This is just too cute to not add my comment, even if I’m DQ’d (grr to summer sun for making kiddos’ bedtimes a little later!).

  103. It’s raining here in Perth but I’d still love to win a summery Staple Dress pattern!

  104. And I am one of those people who can’t wait for the 80’s to leave! But I still love your dress! 🙂

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