June 7, 2017

Lenox Shirtdress Sewalong Day 7: Button Bands

We’re making great progress on our Lenox Shirtdresses, everyone! Now we’re going to be getting into the more shirt-like aspects of the dress, starting today with the button bands. Remember, if you want more in-depth tutorials, check out our Shirtmaking for Curves online course which covers many of these steps in much more detail.

Start by pining one of the interfaced button bands to one of the dress fronts at the center. As you pin, you’ll note that the button band buckles going around the corner of the V-neck; don’t worry, it’s supposed to do this and will lay flat once it’s sewn and pressed in place.

Sew the length of this seam at 1/2″ seam allowance, pivoting at the corner of the V-neck.

To allow the band to lay flat, carefully snip through the seam allowance up to but not through the stitching line at the corner of the V-neck.

Now, press the button band and seam allowance towards the center front of the dress.

At this point, it should lie flat and there shouldn’t be any tucks or buckles at the V-neck corner. If there are, pick out that section of the seam and re-sew so it is smooth and flat.

Next, pin the un-interfaced button band on top of the interfaced button band, pinning and sewing as before, pivoting at the edge of the V-neck.

Press the other long edge of the un-interfaced button band to the wrong side by 1/2″, clipping into the corner of the V-neck as shown to help it lay flat. You can do this before or after pinning and sewing, just make sure you do the correct edge! Sew the un-interfaced button band to the interfaced one at 1/2″ seam allowance. Grade the seam allowance if you have a bulky fabric, and press the un-interfaced button band to the wrong side of the dress.

Secure in place with wonder tape or with pins on the right side of the dress. Topstitch down both long edges of the button band from the right side of the dress. Repeat with the second center front and two button bands.

Great work! That’s it for today. Next time, we’ll sew the collar and collar stand.

4 thoughts on “Lenox Shirtdress Sewalong Day 7: Button Bands

  1. liz n. says:

    So here’s a question…(prefaced by a lot of other stuff)…

    I’ve finished my Lenox, which is actually for Mom, and it looks wonderful on her! (Used Robert Kaufman’s navy chambray pin dot.) She says it’s the most comfortable summer dress she’s ever worn, so, obvs, I need to sew a couple more for her. (And kudos to y’all on that, by the way. It really is a lovely pattern.)

    But…my teeny, tiny, petite, size four daughter has fallen in love with Lenox and wants one, too!

    Now, I’ve certainly altered patterns and tweaked them to customize fit, but going from a size 14 to a size 4!?

    Is this do-able? Am I crazy for trying? Suggestions on how to size down so much? Or is my best solution to adapt a small size pattern so that it looks more like Lenox?

    1. It’s probably a bit overly ambitious – you should check out other patterns that have similar style lines. I believe there is a princess seam v-neck shirtdress from McCall’s (though I’m not sure if it’s still in print).

  2. Claire Smith says:

    Button band is a total nightmare. I’ve unpicked it about 3 times and it’s still not working. Fabric now trashed so the whole thing is going in the bin.

    1. Sorry to hear that! If you email us at hello@cashmerette.com with more details about the problem you’re having, we can try to help you out.

Let me know what you think!