I have had my eye on the Sew Over It Doris dress for close to a year now. It is such a cute summer dress and I love the back ties! As I was planning my next makes for the Minerva Crafts Blogger Network, I decided that the time had come to sew it up. And when I saw this adorable chicken print Cotton Fabric, I knew it was the perfect match. I can’t resist a cutesy novelty print!

The Doris dress is a very versatile Sewing Pattern. You can sew it up in a variety of light to medium weight fabric. The fabric I used is a lovely cotton poplin and I think it worked fabulously. I wouldn’t use fabric that was any stiffer than this. The skirt is made up of seven bias cut panels, so it looks best in a fabric with a little drape.

I made a couple of adjustments to the bodice pattern pieces before cutting everything out. I chose to make a size 12. I did have to make a small FBA since the finished bust measurement was 38 inches, whereas my bust measurements is 39 inches. To make sure I had enough ease to wear the dress comfortably without feeling squished, I did a 1 inch FBA which added about 2 inches across the bust. I also added 1 ½ inches in length to both the front, the back, and the front facing. These two changes made the Doris fit almost perfectly.

Next time I would raise the neckline by an inch. This dress is absolutely wearable, but I would be more comfortable if the neck was just a tad higher. I also think I will add just a little more room across the bust. I want the front pleats to end just below my bust, and the fabric under the bust to sit snugly against my body. Right now the midriff area is sitting a bit away from my body, and that tells me that I don’t have quite enough room for my bust. Hopefully that all made sense! I think it will be fairly easy to tweak the Doris and turn it into one of my favorite TNT patterns.

The skirt is just fantastic! Since there are so many pieces involved, I know that it can be rather annoying to sew up. However, I have found that I really like flared panel skirts. They can be a hassle but I love the finished product. They are twirly and I find that they are less prone to potential wardrobe malfunctions than full circle skirts. But, then again, I do love a good circle skirt. Basically, if a skirt is full and twirly I am sold!

I waffled back and forth before finally deciding to make the front buttons on the bodice useable. You don’t have to since the dress also has an invisible zipper in the side seam. I really didn’t want to deal with buttonholes. They are so fiddly to sew! In the end, I thought I would prefer having the functioning buttonholes instead of just sewing the buttons on through all layers. And since there were only six buttons it wasn’t too bad.

I am already planning another Doris. This was my first time using a Sew Over It Pattern and now I want to try them all! Any recommendations on which I should do next?