I know I have already discussed my love of a shift dress. But, this is a recurring theme with me. I did some quick research and learned the origin of the shift dress is the 1920’s flapper dress. A shift dress falls straight from the shoulders, has a short length and the only shaping is darts around the bust-making it easier to “dance and move.” This was a dramatic departure from the corseted styles that preceded it. The shift dress was revived in a big way in the 1960s. You can find plenty of shift dress warnings: Avoid looking like a paper bag! Don’t go too loose or too tight! Don’t be boring! But, I say- no need for caution! The shift dress is super versatile and is still the perfect wardrobe choice for a modern lifestyle. I also favor this as a simple one and done wardrobe choice.
For this shift dress- the fabric does all of the heavy work. This beautiful cotton woven with a repeating zig zag border makes this simple, straight-forward dress memorable. Note the pattern is woven in- not printed- which gives the fabric extra soul. The fabric is not tightly woven- but this also lends to the craft-like feel.
As I discussed previously, I favor a slight A-line shape and this dress is a true shift falling from the shoulders with bust darts. The only real work for this project was in the layout. Pattern placement took some forethought to ensure the horizontal border placement was optimal. It took a bit of draping, and head scratching, but I think it worked out.
For this shift dress I used my tried and true Simplicity Cynthia Rowley 2584 pattern-now discontinued and modified the neckline and the sleeves. It might seem like trouble to fiddle with those details- but I know the overall cut and shape are right- which makes minor details easy to sub out.
Once the pattern was placed and cut out- it was such a quick and satisfying make.