Belladone Deer & Doe Dresses My Wardrobe Quilting cotton

A Panda Belladone

I only discovered Deer and Doe patterns fairly recently, and I can’t get enough of them. My most recent make is the Belladone pattern, released in 2012. Certainly not new, but a new one for me.

The panda print quilting cotton I used has been lingering in my stash for years. I promised myself I would stop buying new fabric and ‘shop my stash’ this year. I bought this with no plan on what I would make, I just loved it. Unfortunately, that often means I find it too difficult to ever cut into. So it lingers in the stash for a few years, totally wasted.

Belladone dress front

Since the Belladone is designed for woven fabrics, I had to make a few tweaks to get the fit just right. It’s still not perfect but it’s definitely wearable, and more importantly, pretty comfortable.

I cut a 42, tapering the skirt out from the waist to a 44 at the hem. The other adjustments I made included:

  • a 1.5″ full bust adjustment.
  • removing a small 1/4″ wedge from the top back panels, using the same method as Lauren over at Lladybird.
  • cutting a wider waistband as the bodice felt slightly too short.
Belladone dress back

The fit of the bodice is so close to being perfect, but there’s still a bit of a weird fit around the waist at the back. I’ll be working to fix that in the next version.

Belladone dress pocket

Pockets! Every dress needs pockets. And these are totally useable too! I added pale pink bias binding to match the flowers in the pattern. It’s not a colour I would normally use, but it matched the flowers perfectly.

Belladone dress back

I finished the neck, armholes and back panels with the same pink bias binding as the pockets. I trimmed all the seams by 1/4″ before adding the binding.

The zipper is lapped and hand picked. I think the finish at the top could be cleaner and I may move the zip to a side seam next time.

Belladone dress back

Check out that pattern matching on the centre back seam! It took a while to get right but was well worth it.

I’m really pleased how this turned out. It was one of those projects that I didn’t like at all while I was making it. Now it’s finished though, I love it. Plus everything I used was already in my stash. I’d call this one a win!

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  • Andrea
    16 August 2019 at 6:14 pm

    Sarah, Wow! This is just gorgeous. Your stitch work on that bias trim is masterful <3 I like the handpicked zip at the center back because it shows off the handwork and makes it look couture/vintage. I found you through searching #V9357 and your version of that dress was so wonderful I wanted to see your other stuff! I love your makes, I'm now a big fan of yours! xoxo, Andrea @duchessofcloth on IG

    • boldstitcher
      16 August 2019 at 6:49 pm

      Thank you so much! I was really pleased with how this turned out. The handpicked zipper is my absolute favourite method and you’ll be seeing lots more

  • Andrea
    16 August 2019 at 6:23 pm

    Ooh! I meant to ask… I don’t see any stitch in the ditch on your bias edges. How did you secure them down on the inside? What do your insides look like? Thanks! -Andrea

    • boldstitcher
      16 August 2019 at 6:46 pm

      Good eye! I sewed the bias onto the edge then turned it to the inside and hand stitched it down. It takes a lot longer but I find the hand sewing really relaxing. Take a look at my instagram for a close up of the inside!