Monday, April 28, 2014

By Hand London Anna maxi dress

Why, yes. I am the last blogger on the planet to sew By Hand London's Anna. What made me wait so long??
I bought the pattern last year, very soon after it came out. I traced it and even did the alterations. I had the fabric ready, but I kept getting distracted by other things, and before I knew it, it was too cold and I wanted to sew pants and long sleeve tops and coats. So, Anna had to wait.
I think she was worth waiting for though. This is really a lovely, graceful dress.
I made the maxi, of course. I love a long, swirly dress. Makes me feel like a princess, even when I'm chasing my kids. The neckline is basically the v neck, but I rounded out the bottom, so it scoops.
I did add pockets in the side seams. Chasing kids and life in general requires pockets. I also made some fit changes, but I cannot for the life of me recall them all. Most critical was to add some darts to the back neckline. As many other sewists experienced, the neckline gaped quite a lot.
Adding the darts took care of the problem though and I really like the fit through the back. It is a bit less fitted than I typically like my dresses, but I wanted this to be a comfy, casual lounging sort of thing, so it works.
The fabric I used is a rayon challis from I love how swirly it this skirt is in this fabric! I also lined the bodice with batiste, rather than using the pattern's facings. The batiste is nice and cool, and I prefer the finish of a lining. I left the skirt unlined though. The better to swirl with, my dear.
I do think the skirt is a smidge too long. I hemmed it while wearing platforms, but it's not really a platform sort of dress. I took off 2 inches when I hemmed, and think I could probably take off another inch. Petite sewists, be aware. This skirt is drafted long! Long and fabulous!


  1. absolutely wondrous!! i love seeing annas pop up after the initial onslaught... it reminds me again how beautiful this pattern is, and this one is a stunner.

    can i ask you a bloggy question? is there any reason you don't choose to enlarge your shots in your posts? your pictures and makes are just so pretty-- it seems a shame to not see them larger, without the need to click :)

  2. you look gorgeous in that dress!!! your curls make it look delightfully vintage. again, i am amazed how this dress looks fabulous on every single sewist, and you are no exception to the rule!

  3. Love your Anna! Great fabric and such a great flow. I'm currently working on my first Anna, so you're not the last one to make it, I'm behind you.
    And I agree with Erin below, this dress looks great on everyone I've seen it, I'm hoping to add myself to that list.

  4. Beautiful dress! I love a long maxi too. And your hair.... so pretty. I don't think I've seen it curled like this before.

  5. I'm glad you asked that! I got a complaint a few years ago that my blog was loading super slow, so I switched my hosting to Flickr and made the images small, but if that hasn't been an issue with anyone else, then BIG PICTURE ALL THE THINGS!! Thanks!

  6. I can't wait to see it! I'm sure it will be great. Hard to go wrong with this pattern.

  7. Good eye! I hot rolled it, and I don't do that often, but it is fun. Thanks!

  8. Very pretty Anna. Perfect for spring.

  9. You're not the last one to sew up an Anna. I'm hoping to finish mine up tonight. I wish I had rounded out the V neck like you did. That's what really held me up--it did not play well with my facing. And you're right to warn people. It IS way long. I'm 5'7" and am going to have to chop a ton off of the skirt. I do like the flowiness though. Really smart of you to put in pockets. You look absolutely gorgeous and elegant in this, and I LOVE the hot-rolled hair.
    Swirl away!!!

  10. Oh, it's gorgeous! And you're not the last blogger, because I haven't made it yet. Maybe this summer, sigh....

  11. Jill @ Made with MoxieApril 30, 2014 at 8:40 PM

    Do big pictures! We need more gorgeous Katie pics!

    I love your Anna. She's sitting on my sewing table next in line.

  12. Well I'm late to the party but this is too fabulous to pass up. It's looks great on you!