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Articles > Shaping Up the Little Black Dress [DianeSev]

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Shaping Up the Little Black Dress  Free  (10/15/13)

In this Article
  • Learn which LBD works for your body type
  • Related Articles

  • Dressing up the Little Black Dress - Angela Wolf
  • Beginnings of the Little Black Dress
  • Discuss this article on the boards
    About the Author
    Diane Severin has had a love of fabrics since she learned to sew at 8 years old.

    She has been a museum teacher at the American Textile History Museum, where she continued her fabric education, learning to spin and weave. She is particularly interested in the process of making cloth and the history of fabric and fashion.

    A writer by trade, Diane has been the News Editor of PatternReview since 2009 and is busy producing much of the writing that comes from the PatternReview offices, including newsletters, news and announcements.

    Shaping up the Little Black Dress by Diane Severin
    Ahhh...the Little Black Dress. We write about it, we have contests for it, we rhapsodize about it, we desire it for our wardrobes.

    OK, so we MUST have it, particularly with holidays, concerts, graduations...you name it. But have you ever wondered which Little Black Dress style would look good on your body? Deepika has made it easy for you by picking out some patterns. So sew them in black and your wish will come true...you will own a Little Black Dress!


    Are You Curvy?
    You'll want to make these waist-defining patterns for your LBD! Fit-and-Flare style subtly defines your waist while floating over a full bottom half. Lucky for you, there are tons of patterns to pick from.

    Vogue Patterns 8723 Misses' Dress Very Easy Vogue

    Lined, fitted bodice and side seam pockets. A, B, C, D cup sizes

    Simplicity 1873 Misses' & Miss Petite Dresses

    Misses' & Miss petite dress in two lengths with pleated skirt and loose fitting cape jacket. Cynthia Rowley Collection.

    Simplicity 2444 Misses' Dresses

    Inspired by Project Runway. Misses' Dress sewing pattern with collar and sleeve variations.

    Butterick 6582 60's Retro Dress

    Semi-fitted dress, mid-calf has gathered shoulders and back zipper. A: attached bow. A,B: straight, back vent. C: flared, belt. Purchased petticoat and belt-kit.


    Are You Tall?
    The peplums on these dresses adds interest to a long figure profile. These patterns should be on your LBD most-wanted list!

    Burda 6977 Peplum Top and Skirt

    Peplums loosely wrapping around the hips and emphasizing the waist are top of the line. A supplemental eye-catcher is the low-cut back of the fitted, sleeveless dress.

    Butterick 5811 Misses' Dress and Peplum

    Lined dress has seam detail, fitted bodice, semi-fitted skirt, back zipper and slit, and stitched hem. Pleated, single-layer (wrong side shows) peplum has waistband, very narrow hem, and hook & eye closure. Try color-blocking by making the top and bottom different shades of black or brown!


    Do You Have a Small Bust?
    Gathering and draping on the bodices of these dresses enhances the volume of the bust area and may be the look for your LBD!
    Vogue Patterns 1250 Misses Dress

    Close-fitting dress.

    Butterick 5950 Misses' Dress

    Close-fitting dress has neckline and pleat variations, elasticized (seamed) waist, and invisible back zipper. C: bias front bodice.

    Vogue Patterns 8728 Misses' Dress and Belt

    Dress has shoulder pads and side snap or zipper closing.

      Do You Have a Large Bust?

    Scoopneck, V-Neck and a Sweet Neckline are all flattering if you have large bust.
    Sewaholic Cambie Dress


    This dress will be so flattering and minimize the chest area without looking matronly. Fitted, fully lined dress with a sweetheart neckline and built-in cap sleeves. Your choice of classic A-line skirt or full gathered skirt. Both skirt options feature pockets.

    Simplicity 1882 Misses' & Miss Petite Dresses

    With a soft V-Neck and princess seams this dress fits the bill. Bonus - Separate pieces for A,B,C and D cup sizes!

    Vogue 8280 - Misses' Dresses

    With plenty of necklines and sleeves to choose from, this style will work for many body types. Check out the 49+ reviews!


    Are You Plus-Sized?

    The wrap dress with the V-neck creates an hourglass shape for the full figure. Make this your LBD, and you'll love the result!

    Vogue Patterns 1027 MISSES' DRESS


    Calf length dress has semi-fitted, pleated and lapped bodice, bias skirt with inseam pockets and stitched hems.

    Cake patterns 0144 Tiramisu Knit Dress

    Knit knee-length dress with front surplice (mock wrap) neckline, short kimono sleeves and an easily customizable midriff section. The skirt features in-seam pockets and falls in the soft folds of a vintage half-circle skirt. The pattern includes optional stripes placement guide, cup sizing A-D and a bust alteration line. Sizing: 30"-50" high bust


    Are You Petite?

    Single color looks great on Petites. Also try patterns with vertical seams which elongate the frame.
    Simplicity 2648 Misses & Miss Petite Dress: Amazing Fit Collection
    The clean lines of this pattern will be great in a single color. The elongating seams will flatter you even more!

    Butterick 5603 Misses' Dress Retro '56

    Fitted dresses A, B, C with flared skirt, below mid-knee, have lined bodice, princess seams and side zipper. A: bateau neckline with band and bow at upper and lower bodice edges. B: tie wrapped around each shoulder and knotted forms bow. C: bodice crosses at front and back. Purchased petticoat.

    Burda 7043 Vintage Dress

    Stylish, ladylike and really charming design in the original style of the 60s. Three form-fitting cocktail dresses, either with round or flat neck, sleeveless or with short sleeves. Cute pointed, short bodice, with small pleats or crimped.


    Tell us about your LBD! And tell us which of these patterns would be ideal for YOUR Little Black Dress!

    Get ideas about what LBDs to sew by reading about Little Black Dress Contests on PatternReview:
    2012 LBD Contest


    2010 LBD Contest


    2009 LBD Contest

    Read what members are saying about the Little Black Dress

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