October 2, 2017

Not quite a Disney princess Upton Dress

Ah, princess seams! The closest I ever come to princesses, unless you count having memorized pretty much all the words to most Disney musicals (current fave: Moana, technically not a princess, I know). A while ago I wrote a tutorial on how to convert darts to princess seams, which I used to make my dirndl, around this time last year.

Alas, the dirndl doesn’t actually make that many outings from my closet, so I thought I would princessify another Upton Dress. And here we have it!

Dress by me, amazing shoes by M.Gemi! (get $50 off a pair here).

I bought this gorgeous weighty stretch cotton from EmmaOneSock *ages* ago – at least 5 years, I’d guess. It was in the early days of my sewing career, when I already had pretty decent taste (if I say so myself), but not the sewing skills to go with it. Somewhat wisely (well done past Jenny!) I decided to keep it for a future time when I’d be less likely to mash it all up.

I did, of course, follow my own tutorial, and the joy of the original, darted Upton Dress fitting me meant that the princess seams fit straight away. Hurray for no fitting! For reference, I made the 20 G/H and I’m 5’6″ tall.

Turns out, it was the perfect pairing of pattern to fabric, because I just love the final dress. It’s definitely on the dressier side, but not so fancy you couldn’t wear it out for a nice dinner. Or, indeed, to pose in front of someone’s door in Chelsea (I live in fear that someone’s going to throw a bucket of water over my head from an upstairs window. Or too much Disney watching there?)

I’m glad to add another comfortable dress to my stable – the stretch in the cotton provides just enough give to make it fit well when I’m standing up, but expand a touch when I sit down. If you use a stretch cotton for the Upton, just remember that if you use a non-stretch woven for the lining, it will lose the stretchiness – the safest thing to do (which is what I did here) is to use the same fabric for the lining and the shell.

Have you tried to convert a pattern from darts to princess seams? Was it successful or did it end up in the bin? I was convinced this process would be hard, but once I gave it a go I surprised myself!

10 thoughts on “Not quite a Disney princess Upton Dress

  1. 2paw says:

    Your new dress is lovely. I want to Princess-ify an Upton as well. I am making a standard one at the moment, but when my cold is gone and my brain can think again, I shall give it a go!

  2. Emykero says:

    Oui, j’ai aussi transformé la Upton dress avec des découpes princesses. Mais c’est moins réussi que la votre! (https://www.threadandneedles.fr/projets-couture/83408-upton-couleur-saphir/) Mes découpes gondolent un peu avec le satin de coton.
    Sorry for the french language but my english is very bad…

  3. Alessa says:

    Ooh, that’s beautiful! What a lovely fabric! I actually used your tutorial last week to convert a bodice with pleats and gathers into princess seams. It took me a bit of thinking, because the pleats were on the neckline, but it was the only woven bodice pattern that I had already adapted to my pregnancy size… >_< 😉 And it worked out beaitifully, so thanks for the tutorial!

  4. Felicity says:

    Love the dress!!
    Thank you for the advise on stretch fabric! I have Cotten sateen aside to make my next Upton, I will be going to buy some extra fabric for lining now! May just get a block colour though.

  5. Cate says:

    I love how you have made so many dresses from the Upton pattern! I am about to make my second and I’d really like to have a smaller neckline that is 2″ closer to my neck. Any tips? The front seems easy but I’m having less luck with the back and I wonder if I need to do something with the darts.

    1. What is the issue that you are having in the back?

  6. Janis Hudson says:

    The dress is lovely. This dress and most all of the patterns are cut too severely low. Cleavage is not for the public in my circles of friends. Is adjusting those tops to be less revealing an easy fix? I so hope so, as I can sew, but alterations are new to my skill set. I’m so glad to have patterns that could fit me!

  7. Janis Hudson says:

    Jenny shows off the pattern beautifully. I checked the pictures again and this dress is more modest than many I’ve seen. Thanks for showing yet another successful use of the Upton pattern.

  8. Daniela says:

    Your Upton dress is very chic. I’m new to your patterns. But im very impressed by the makes of you and the other members of the club.
    Sorry for asking which skirt do you used for this Upton dress?
    Sorry for my english i neuer learned IT in school. Online by reading Blogs about sewing.
    Greetings from Leipzig

    1. Hi Daniela – it’s the gored skirt version.

Let me know what you think!