Monday, June 17, 2024

Soft Crepe Dress Simplicity S9820

Hello Sewing Friends,

I finally have something to share with pictures.  This Simplicity dress was made immediately after I finished my Chicago Frock tails dress.  In fact, I made it the morning before the Frock tails Saturday evening affair.  I really needed something to cleanse my palette.  Because I devoted many hours to making my Frock tails dress which in the end lack luster.  The truth is I made two dresses.  One trashed and the other a substitute for what I really wanted to wear.

Anyway, Simplicity S9820 helped me feel better about all the hours that I spent on the party dress.  To start, I had already made the pattern adjustments.  Anyone who has similar adjustments knows that this takes quite some time with every new pattern to use in a sewing project.  It was so satisfying to go right to the cutting table.  Sewing time was about 3.5 hours plus time to hand stitch the hem.

Pattern Description:  As usual, Simplicity gives the vaguest pattern descriptions.  My description:  Misses's knit dresses and shrug.  View A dress is an A-line mid-calf knit dress with shoulder and neckline drape details.  View B dress is a floor length A-line strapless dress with a front knotted long sleeve shrug.  Both dresses close with an invisible zipper at the back of the dress.

Pattern Sizing:  This pattern is available in  sizes 8 to 26, which is very nice.  I used size 16 with modifications.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?  Yes, it did.

Were the instructions easy to follow?  The instructions were typical.  Nothing difficult or confusing in them.  

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?  I love the shoulder and neckline drape.  The A-line silhouette was a plus too.  I was mostly interested in making view A.  But after I finished it, I considered making view B at a later date.


I don't have any real dislikes.

Fabric Used: My fabric is from New Rainbow Fabrics on Roosevelt Road in Chicago,  It is a blush, crepe knit with a soft hand.  The stretch of the fabric is more than 25%.  It has great recovery.  I think it is perfect for this dress.  New Rainbow has this crepe knit in a variety of colors at a very reasonable price of $7.00 per yard.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:  I have quite a few changes that I made.  I begin by examining the measurements on the pattern front for the finished dress.  The finished bust measurement is only 34 inches.  


  • FBA - Often, for my size it's around 39 inches.  So, I feel this pattern runs a little on the small size.  Because the front and back patterns are designed sleeveless, I had to think about how to make the FBA adjustment without distorting the shape of the dress.  Below is an illustration of the FBA.  I simply slashed through the neckline down to the bust area continuing the length of the pattern.  This had to be done twice because the front pattern piece was for the entire front body instead of half the width of the body.   This adjustment produce a dart.  I decided to angle the dart slightly.  I hate darts that are straight across from side to apex.

  • Added width to the two back pieces - When I make a FBA, the front is sometimes much wider than the back.  Particularly, below the bust. Often, I end up sewing larger side seams to slim down the rest of the dress.  This sometimes causes the back to be even smaller.  And the side seams are off center along the side.  So to balance things out a bit, I added some width across the back.  Note:  My usual prominent shoulder blade adjustment was not needed because the back of the dress falls well  below the shoulder blades.

  • Swayback - There are two back pattern pieces.  I suspect the reason is not to confuse the sewist with the markings for each shoulder and neckline attachments.  Tucks were made on both pieces.  Note:  the amount of the tuck has to be added back at the hem to balance out the hem.  

  • Marking the Lower dress pattern pieces - I decided to cut the pattern pieces at the hem for view A.  Each piece is label with the respective pattern number plus the letter "B".

  • Front and Back Facings -  I adjusted the width of both to match the adjustment that I made to the front and back.

  • Elastic Around the Top of the Dress -  To stabilize the neckline of the dress, elastic is added.  I measured the elastic by first stretching it to relief any added tension.  Then I measure it like I would to take an upper bust measurement.  This is how I determined the length of my elastic.  Next, I divided it into four sections.  Starting at the right back for section 1.  Sections 2 and 3 for the front.  Finally, section 4 for the left back.  I stretched the elastic to fit each section.  The elastic was attached after the facings were sewn on.
  • Shoulder and Neckline Drape - I added about an inch to each.  I didn't need it.  So, I had to remove the added length to those pieces.

These are my adjustments/changes.  I hope this is clear.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?  I think I will make it again.  Probably for a holiday dress.  There is always a holiday party to go to.  And this dress is a quick make with great results.  And, yes I do recommend it to others.  

Conclusion: I am very pleased with how this dress turned out.  It was the perfect antidote for recovery from a "not so great" sewing experience.  Lol

Parting Photos:   Me wearing Simplicity Combo S8735 and S8637.  The pattern review is:   Easy, Breezy Summer Dress.  It is perfect for the 90 degree temps we are experiencing right now.



  1. Amazing dresses!!! You look so beautiful in both styles! Great tips! Thank you

  2. Your blog is such a fun place for me. I always learn something when I'm here. And today, although I feel pain for your recent unproductive sewing session, I feel peace of mind for me. I consider you to be an expert, and have followed your blog for a long time. It gives me hope and a sense of calm to realize that even experts have wadders from time to time. :) Thank you, thank you, thank you.

    1. Thank you so much, Riley. You give me too much credit. I'm no expert. I'm a practicing sewist trying to sew the best that I can. Thank you again. C



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