Want a project for Spring 2020? Try the Magnolia day dress in crisp cotton…

It’s great to start a new year with a new sewing project, the kind of project that’s rewarding to sew and you’ll know it will have lots of wear when finished. What’s not to love?

Today I’m reviewing Deer & Doe’s Magnolia dressmaking pattern in premium cotton Spring green fabric.

This dress fits like a dream and was the perfect post Christmas make to get me ready for a new season.

Here’s why you should make a Magnolia too…

A Classic, Versatile Dress

So many ways to make this dress. The Magnolia wrap style bodice has a choice of two skirt lengths, the longer version has a front split and a choice of two sleeves styles; angel or long gathered at the cuff. I went for the angel sleeve version as I didn’t have this style in my wardrobe and increased the hem length by 10cm.

 The long sleeve and long skirt has a ‘70’s vibe about it and would make a totally different style of dress. I’m looking forward to making this too.

I love that you get two very different looks by just changing the sleeve and skirt length. I used 2.5 metres of fabric and 1.5metres of bias for this make. The pattern is reflective of Deer And Doe’s French effort-lessy chic style.

Great Instructions And Pattern Pieces

The pattern had great easy to follow instructions, if you are an experienced beginner this pattern would be perfect for you!

I loved the details in the instructions, for example which way to press a seam and easy to follow diagrams. This made sewing Magnolia quick and fun to sew. This is my second Deer And Doe pattern and it didn’t disappoint. I am amazed that they don’t take long to sew but have lovely details and fit.

The pattern pieces were clear and had easy to follow cut lines for your size. I used a size 40. With sizes from 34 to 46, it was easy to cut out my size. I also like the durable envelope the pattern comes in. It’s designed with the view you are going to stitch this a lot!


Flattering Bodice


The centre band is so flattering (especially after Christmas!) with the chic lines of the bodice top that mirror onto the six piece skirt. My Magnolia fits perfectly, I only adjusted the seam over the bust. The neckline doesn’t gape at the front or the nape of the neck which is common on wrap dresses. I liked that I used a bias instead of a faced neckline too. This gave a neat finish to my bodice.


A Bow!

Ok, so this was one of the reasons I made Magnolia; that bow! Just how cute and such a lovely detail for a Spring dress.

The bow is a quirky feature which I just love, plus the ties at the sides can pull in the waistline if needed.


Classic Cotton Fabric

Minvera’s broadcloth is available in twenty colours. It’s a medium weight fabric, so for my Magnolia it held the drape in the skirt beautifully.


Ok, so with a cotton, you do need to press it but it’s so worth it to get the crispness in your make. This cotton was so great to sew and I bet you will be making a Magnolia in a collection of colours for the season ahead! At only £7.99 per metre it’s a bargain!

I can see myself using this for family parties or afternoon tea with the girls. It’s so comfy but dressy enough to go out in. 

I hope I’ve inspired you to make your first make of 2020? I think this is a wardrobe staple for the months ahead. Thank-you Minerva for the beautiful fabric and pattern, I’m now hooked on Deer And Doe patterns…now which one next?

Samantha writes a creative craft blog www.crafternoonteas.com and hosts Crafternoon Tea Parties and Events www.crafternoonteahostess.co.uk in the Midlands and beyond!