I made a dress to match my favourite pair of Converse! The Dune maxi dress by Valentine & Stitch

I’ve made a dress to match my favourite pair of Converse trainers! That’s totally normal, right? I’m usually found running errands at break neck speed and dressed,  for life preserving reasons, in baggy jeans and sensible shoes. But there are times I wish I looked a bit more ‘put together’ without, admittedly, putting in any extra effort! This is where the idea for my Dune maxi dress came in.

Sewsarahsmith

If you haven’t yet heard of Valentine & Stitch, they’re a new independent pattern company headed up by my lovely friend Helen* and her husband, producing a range of PDFs for knits (you can check them all out HERE).  Available as either a top (it’s your perfect easy to wear tee) or, I guess, as a really flowy maxi sewn up in a pretty lightweight jersey – Dune is a perfect canvas to really show off a gorgeous print or floral. See Helen here in hers:

Valentine & stitch Dune dress
Helen – Valentine & Stitch

I love the scoop of this neckline (there’s also a higher neck option too) and the way the shoulders are the right width to cover your bra straps. It’s fitted at the bust but then falls away gently (and flatteringly) over the tum, volumining out to a gorgeous kick hem.

So now I’ve said that, let me explain my version. My favourite pair of Converse are  high tops in Chartreuse green. I’d had this length of scuba crepe for ages just waiting for the right thing. They pair perfectly. It had to be a maxi dress because a skirt length any shorter would highlight what can only be described as my ‘footballers’ legs’, especially when my feet are encased in flats. So a maxi dress length is ideal…but, importantly, the hem had to break just over the front of the shoe. If they couldn’t be seen, what was the point?! (There’s a straightforward tutorial up on V&S’s website on how to calculate this – makes it easy to determine).

Valentine & Stitch

So that was the thinking bit done, then onto the actual sewing. It’s about as simple as could be. The neckline and armscyes are finished with bands, either hidden or exposed. I chose exposed because clearly I was veering away from making this a ‘pretty’ dress – I wanted it to look more sporty.  Because the scuba crepe I’ve used is also quite ‘boingy boingy‘ (I can’t think of a better way to describe it!), it would also have been a faff turning them under. I simply sewed them right sides together, flipped them under and topstitched the seam down with a stretch twin needle.

How to sew knit bands
Ahhh, I love this shade of green! How would you describe it? Forest green, sage green…mulch?!

The scuba crepe I’ve used also gives a more structured look to the kick hem but I think that’s in keeping with the overall sporty look? Scuba crepe was a new one to me when I got it – whilst it’s still a thicker jersey, its thinner than your average scuba but with the definite texture of a crepe. I didn’t adjust the pattern at all, even accounting for its relative lack of stretch – and I’m happy with the fit.

Dune maxi dress
Yes, yes – I will still wear my Rodeo cowgirl hat in deepest rural Devon.

So yeah, I’ve roadtested my Dune dashing up the hill on the school run and I neither tripped up flat on my face or got it caught in the car door. Being that’s my litmus test, I’m calling the dress a  winner!

And, apparently, after all I’ve harped on about my footwear, the hardest part of this make was trying to get photos that showed the damn things!

Sewsarahsmith

Anyhow, I’m looking forward to making another version when Spring comes around again in a pretty floral, like Helen’s, to pair with sandals and I think the tee version would be a great way of using up all the large offcuts of jersey I seem to be accumulating!

So what do you think? Would you sew up a dress to match a much worn pair of shoes?!

Until next time,

Sewsarahsmith

 

NB : whilst *Helen is a personal friend, I bought this pattern out of my own pennies and my views on it are honest and entirely my own.

 

 

 


26 thoughts on “I made a dress to match my favourite pair of Converse! The Dune maxi dress by Valentine & Stitch

  1. Love it! What a perfect finish on the neckline and armholes too 👌🏻 I would say it’s a khaki green ☺️ I love easy to wear things… some days you just need them!

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  2. Another lovely make! I didn’t even know that scuba crepe existed but now I need to get my hands on some!! I always have a dilemma that even if I have me-mades that are good for chucking on to go run some errands, I don’t have comfy shoes that go with them… You’ve solved that problem!

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  3. Love your dress, especially the colour! Especially like how you’ve neatened the armholes – just wondering if you can use a ‘twin needle’ on a conventional sewing machine?

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    1. Thank you Celia! I sew on a regular Janome – you just need to attach an extra spool and use a stretch twin needle – my Janome (which is relatively basic) just has a spoke that sits in a hole on top for putting your extra spool. What machine do you have? You certainly can use a twin needle in most machines I think? Xxx

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  4. Thank you Sarah! I just cut out the Ebony (Closet Case Files) and when I saw your bands I knew that’s just what I wanted but for the life of my I couldn’t figure out how you did it (which is what makes them EXTRA special :)) ) I’ll bookmark this post until I get to that spot on this top too 🙂

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  5. How gorgeous is this?! It looks fabulous on you Sarah, and I really like the way the scuba crepe falls into a more structured hem. Also like the “t-shirt” finish of the boingy boingy bands – you’ve really made this dress your own and I couldn’t love it more. So happy you love it, and can’t wait to see your Spring floral version!! P.S. Any day is a good day to wear a rodeo hat 😉

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    1. Thanks lovey! Thank you for designing such an awesome pattern! I’m looking giftware to trying more and yes can’t wait to make a S/S version similar to yours. I agree about the hat but the kids think I’m embarrassing! Xxx

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    1. Haha that made me laugh! I’m definitely still classed as a Grockle I think in Devon – I need to live here another five years before I’ll count as a ‘local’! Let’s just say we’re tourists through life eh! Scuba crepe is a bit weird but also kind of funky!! Xx

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  6. I love your dress looks gorgeous and the fabric looks lovely, might have to check out some scuba crepe! I love converse too and i have a blue and white stripe maxi dress that matches a pair of blue converse.

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    1. Yey to matching converse!! 🤛🏻Thanks Sarah! It’s funny stuff scuba crepe, really easy to work with as you’d expect but with that ‘dry’ texture of crepe in the surface (the wrong side is smoother). This was a really inexpensive one xx

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  7. I just LOVE this colour! I just ordered some knit in navy and more in olive. But yours is just perfect. I also love that it matches your converses – what a look! Very chic. Would you explain more how you got that finish on your arms and neck? I really love it. So neat. Did you sew the band to the right side and just turn it to the inside and topstitch on the right side?

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    1. Ah Kathleen, yes, olive green! I was clearly having a blank moment! And I’ve just edited the post to quickly explain how I did the bands – you were right, of course! Keep the comments coming Kathleen, I’d really miss them otherwise!!!!! Xxxx

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