The Venice Dress - 3 ways

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Over the summer, New Horizon's pattern company came out with a beautiful dress pattern called the Venice Dress.  I had completely missed any previews or sneak peeks when it was being tested, and I was floored by how beautiful it was when I finally saw it released! It included several lengths and sleeve styles, and all were gorgeous!  I added it to my "to sew" list, but didn't think much more about it for a while. 

As a stay at home mom, my need for a gorgeous dress like this is pretty limited.  I decided I was going to tackle it any way, and come up with a couple other ways to style it so that's its a little more functional for my everyday life!

My idea for this multi-functional dress really started to take shape when I found the perfect fabric to use.  I found a gorgeous and unique heather grey Rayon Challis from Califabrics.  In general, I tend to think Rayon Challis is a pretty dressy material.  It has such beautiful drape.  I thought the heathered nature of this particular fabric made it a little more suitable for every day. (Side note, my 2 yard cut arrived with an unfortunate flaw right in the middle of one of the yards.  The customer service at Califabrics took care of the issue right away, and shipped me an extra yard the next day.  I could have returned the flawed 2 yard cut and received a new 2 yard cut instead, but opted to start working with what I had and wait for the replacement yard. Very pleased with their excellent and prompt customer service!)  I also had some beautiful grey lace trim from So Sew English Fabrics that was the perfect accent for the bottom hem! Of course I had to add the pockets, because if you've read any of my previous posts, you'll realize pockets are life around here!

My first style includes some purple sparkly sweater knit leggings and some grey suede ankle booties.  This look is a step up from my every day-running the kids around look, but still fairly casual. I threw on a sparkly necklace with it to highlight the pretty shape of the neckline!

My first style includes some purple sparkly sweater knit leggings and some grey suede ankle booties.  This look is a step up from my every day-running the kids around look, but still fairly casual. I threw on a sparkly necklace with it to highlight the pretty shape of the neckline!

My second look will be perfect for fall.  I've paired the dress with some charcoal grey tights and tan boots.  I finished it off with a little black and charcoal buffalo plaid scarf for warmth and coziness!

My second look will be perfect for fall.  I've paired the dress with some charcoal grey tights and tan boots.  I finished it off with a little black and charcoal buffalo plaid scarf for warmth and coziness!

My third look is my dressy look.  This is something I would wear to a wedding or a holiday party.  I LOVE THIS DRESS.  To me, its the perfect balance of sexy and sophisticated.  I feel very pretty in this dress, yet comfortable.

My third look is my dressy look.  This is something I would wear to a wedding or a holiday party.  I LOVE THIS DRESS.  To me, its the perfect balance of sexy and sophisticated.  I feel very pretty in this dress, yet comfortable.

This dress is going to be a fall staple in my wardrobe with the many ways I can wear it.  I used to not think dresses were practical for my lifestyle with 2 busy preschoolers, but this goes to prove just how wrong I was!

Finally, I just wanted to point out why Terra from New Horizon's is one of my favorite pattern designers.  There are a LOT of talented designers out there, and I enjoy making patterns from many of them.  Most of them deliver beautiful and well drafted patterns, but I've come to appreciate a few small details in particular, all of which Terra includes in her patterns. Some of these may seem small and trivial, but all in all make for a smooth sewing experience for me!  Here are a few of my favorite little things:

  • Sleeves are not cut on the fold, they have a different curve on the front and the back as our bodies and arms are not the same on the front and the back.

  • When printing in layers, the size is still printed near the line, so there is no more deciphering which grey dotted line you printed to know which size you are working with!

  • Pattern pieces include a dashed line for lengthening or shortening as needed. No need to find the ideal spot and make sure its straight, there's already a line included for you!

The first pattern I made from New Horizons was the Telluride Top.  I was a tester for it, and I was super skeptical of having to make an XS in a fitted top.  I held up the pattern piece and saw lots of curves and thought "thats not gonna work on my rectangle body."  But, it did. And so has every other pattern I've made from New Horizons!  I love how flattering all of the patterns are on every body type! If you haven't made a pattern from New Horizons yet.... I highly suggest you give one a try.

Please note that this post contains links.  Some of these are "affiliate links" which means I get paid a tiny portion of whatever is purchased.  Affiliate payments go directly to my fabric fund to continue the cycle of making up more patterns so I can share the love with you!