Cross-stitch Rose Belladone Dress


Morning friends, how are you? I'm going to a wedding today wearing this very dress, which I was inspired to make when Sara asked me to join her Dress Up Party! It didn't take me long to settle on Deer and Doe's Belladone Dress, because I'm a sucker for back detail and minimalist skirts that can still accommodate my junk. Truth be told, I can't believe I waited this long to whip up a Belladone...I'm delighted with the result!  



The gorgeous stretch cotton was an impulse buy from Barry's in Birmingham when I was out with stitching friends. I cut out a 36 across the neckline, armholes and back, grading to a 38 everywhere else. I always find it a bit tricky to choose a size when finished measurements aren't provided, but my choice worked out well for me, though I suspect I may have needed to grade up for a fabric with less stretch.



Predictably, my favourite part of this dress is the lovely crossover back detail. The edges are finished with bias binding, as are the neckline and armholes, lending this pattern to a whole load of fun with contrasting binding. There are so many fun Belladones out there, but I wanted to keep my version streamlined so I turned my bias binding under and topstitched.


The other thing I love about this pattern is the pleated skirt front. The two big pleats add enough volume to the A-line skirt, without adding unnecessary bulk to the waistline. For extra brownie points, there's pockets too!



Unusually, Belladone comes with a hem facing reminiscent of vintage patterns and rarely seen in contemporary patterns. The finish is fantastic, especially if you hand-pick the raw edge of the facing to the skirt, which I happily took the time to do. Given this luxurious detail, I found it slightly disappointing that the pattern doesn't come with some kind of waistline facing for a tidier finish inside. I know it's simple enough to draft your own, but that's not really the point.


I really, really wanted to add a skirt lining for layering up with tights in colder weather, but I made a silly mistake that I didn't have enough time or fabric to rectify. If you want to successfully add in a lining, then remember that the skirt front piece is shaped around the pocket facing. So you'll need to overlap the two pieces and trace in the full skirt front shape.


Overall, I give the Belladone Dress a HUGE thumbs up! It's pretty and versatile, coming together easily thanks to a clear set of instructions and diagrams. I can't wait to make it again and again, and to try give the other Deer and Doe patterns in my stash a go!

52 comments:

  1. Lovely dress. I find Deer and Doe a good fit, think it's drafted for C cup so no need for fbas. I'll definitely try this one.

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    1. Yes, it really helps not having to do an FBA!

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    2. I did not know this... I'm truly in FBA territory these days (sometimes I sneak a bodice in if the fabric is ok) but hadn't thought Deer & Doe was for C cup... thumbs up even more!

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  2. A beautiful dress! Enjoy the wedding. I'm looking for dresses to make for two of my daughters to wear to their sister's wedding (as bridesmaids). We're not looking for the traditional dress and they love back detail. Do you have any other recommendations for patterns for dresses with terrific back detail? Daughters are late 20s. Thank you.

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    1. Oh how lovely! I also think your dauhters might like Dixie DIY's new dress pattern which has a cute V-back and adorable side cutouts - http://dixiediy.bigcartel.com/product/bonnell-dress

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  3. I love the back of the dress, very effective, brilliant choice of fabric too!

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  4. This is gorgeous. I've made this pattern a couple of times and it's a winner.

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    1. It really is, can't wait to make it again!

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  5. What a beautiful dress, hope you have a fab day wearing it. That fabric is gorgeous.

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    1. It was very comfortable to wear all day!

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  6. The print is lovely! And the angular, keyhole back detail is really nice.

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    1. Thanks Evie, it's a sweet pattern!

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  7. Beautiful! This style suits you so perfectly! And that print is just the bees knees!

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  8. Pretty! Pretty! Pretty! I'm all about the neckline details right now, and this back detail is lovely! You know...I've been making a LOT of gathered skirts for my fit and flare dresses, and I think it's high time I switch it up. I love the silhouette of yours, and I want to give this silhouette a go!

    Not so much a back detail, but the front bodice has a similar cut out on my most recent make here: A Colourful Canvas: Simplicity 1803

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    1. Wow Sue! I love your dress (and cool NYC pics)...a cutout is my weakness, no matter where it features! And yes, the Belladone skirt is so simple, yet effective!

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  9. This dress and the print look lovely on you! Great job on fitting. Re your junk: we're not twigs, thank goodness, and I'd bet your DBF likes it! A woman with curves is a good thing. Those models who stand full front for many pattern designs look - awful! I want to take them home, put them on an exercise program to get some muscle and feed them!!!

    I want that fabric! Do you know who the manufacturer is? I live in Phoenix, Arizona, and it's a desert for fabric shopping too! So I'd like to look for that fabric online. Thanks!

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  10. Fantastic fabric! The. Back is such a nice detail. Great dress in you!

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  11. So many pretty features on this dress. The fabric suits it perfectly too, great job!

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  12. What a pretty dress. The back detail is lovely and the fabric is superb. Xx

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    1. This fabric is prooving pretty popular...thanks!

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  13. This is so pretty on you! I just love this combo.

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  14. fabulous dress, I love that fabric

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  15. Love that fabric, it suits Belladonne so well and looks great on you (and perfect with the shoes ;o)

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    1. Thank you for the kind words!

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  16. That is a beautiful dress I think I would like to get the pattern like that and make one, I follow your blog and you always have something you made and information about it .

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    1. Thanks, glad you enjoy my posts!

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  17. Love the dress! Love the fabric!
    Love the construction of it! Well done!

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  18. Your Belladone is lovely. It's one of my favourite patterns.

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    1. It's a keeper of a pattern, that's for sure :o)

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  19. So lovely Marie. I was given this pattern as a gift by my sister in law for my birthday and I really want to make it soon, that back detail is fab but I love the skirt shape and pockets too

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    1. Oh Kerry, make it soon...you won't regret it :o)

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  20. What a lovely dress, you look lovely in it! I will have to add this to my wishlist!

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  21. Oh wow, this is absolutely beautiful Marie! I've seen a few Belladone dresses but this is the first one that's made me want to make one of my own. It's the perfect pairing of fabric and pattern, really lovely for a wedding too. x

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    1. Aaaw, thank you Jane...that's high praise indeed!xx

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  22. This is so beautiful! It very well may be my favorite pattern, and yours is absolutely lovely! For the waistband finish, I just cut a second waistband and use it as a facing. And I agree about the hem facing- it lends such a nice heft to the skirt!

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    1. Thanks Sonja, I've been inspired by your versions :o) And yes, top tip on the waistband facing front...thanks!

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  23. All the sweetness of a beautiful dress and a wonderful sewing project... and this is just fabulous on you! Love it! totally inspired!

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    1. Thanks so much for the kind words!

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  24. Oh my! This is just so, so pretty! xx

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  25. Oh crikey that's a fun fabric! Love it. And what a beautiful silhouette the Belladone is, isn't it? It looks really good on you, my dear! Great work.

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    1. Thanks so much, it really is a great little pattern!

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