Cotton Poplin with Stretch!


IMG_0033You survived another year, and I made a new dress to celebrate!



One of the things I look for when shopping online are fabrics that will work well together, and I had no doubts about these off-white and navy Celtic inspired stretch cotton poplins. from Mood Fabrics.

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Cotton poplin with the addition of spandex is a dream come true for casual Summer sewing! Crisp, lightweight and minimal wrinkling – what more can I want?

Using my own pattern I sewed the bodice with the navy background poplin saving the reverse fabric for the collar, placket and lower band.


I generally make lower bands similar to a double folded bias tape equally encasing the lower edge on the front and back, but I was short on fabric and was forced to be creative. After cutting a four inch band and folding under 1/2 inch, I stitched the right side of the facing to the wrong side of the dress and flipped it to the right side of the dress.

lower band wrong side

The technique resulted in a nice finish to the inside of the dress pictured above. I finished the band by topstitching the band’s upper edge to the right side of the dress.

The busy design was perfect for the 16″ back darts I used to get the fitted back I was seeking, (not available in RTW! The fitted back is strictly a benefit of sewing 😉 ).


The darts completely disappeared into the print.


Due to the poplin’s crisp nature, the collar is standing at attention with only a lightweight tricot interfacing (also applied to the placket).

IMG_0017But best of all, thanks to the added spandex, the dress did not need a zipper!

Not only should cotton poplins be preshrunk but I noticed the fabric retracts very slightly after cutting. I recommend cutting along the outer edge of the cutting line or marking your seam lines in case of a small retraction.

Both of the cotton poplins are still available, however Mood also offers a large selection of stretch poplins, including Liberty of London designs. Check them out HERE!

And with that, I believe it’s time to celebrate! So here’s to great fabrics, especially Mood Fabrics, here’s to fun Summer sewing and most importantly, here’s to our great nation, the United States of America!


Best wishes for a happy and safe holiday 🙂







  • Claire Kennedy
    July 3, 2015

    I love these positive/negative matches too – and isn’t it amazing you can’t see the darts – how cool is that! What a great do on this fabric.

    • Sarah Gunn
      July 5, 2015

      Thank you, Claire! Surely these were RTW companions along the way 🙂

  • Mary Beth
    July 3, 2015

    I look at Mood Fabrics the same way – in fact I’ll bet a lot of these fabrics were paired off in the RTW lines. For example, right there’s a fabric in light challis (?) and then there’s a heavier version of the same print right next to it. No doubt in my mind that these fabrics were together previously. I’d make a dress with floaty sleeves with these two. But I also see fabrics in same prints, different colorway, which I think would look fab together as you’ve done here with your dress.

    • Sarah Gunn
      July 5, 2015

      To me this is the hardest part of online fabric shopping. I’ve ordered fabrics with the thought of using them together that didn’t work but these were a no brainer for sure!

  • Valerie
    July 3, 2015

    I always love your makes so much.

    • Sarah Gunn
      July 5, 2015

      Thank you, Valerie! That’s a very sweet comment 🙂

  • Marina G. Villalobos
    July 3, 2015

    I always enjoy your blogs and find that you are not only an accomplished sewer but you have great taste and style sense as well. It seems unbelievable to me that you have only been sewing for such a relatively short period of time! Congratulations and keep the wonderful blogs coming!

    • Goodbye Valentino
      July 3, 2015

      Thank you so much, Marina! I need to clarify that I have been sewing for many years. I took a 25 year break from sewing clothes for myself. During that time I sewed quilts, home dec and a few children’s clothes (smocking etc…). It has been such a joy to return to sewing for myself! So much has changed and all for the better…… 🙂

  • Sylvia Long
    July 4, 2015

    Love this dress! Would you share your pattern with us? What a great combination :).

    • Sarah Gunn
      July 5, 2015

      Thank you Sylvia! The pattern is one I ‘designed’ – a combo of pattern pieces, RTW features and lots of tweaking 😉

  • Amy
    July 5, 2015

    What a fun pairing of fabrics. They work perfectly together. And, I love that you’ve found your perfect tunic pattern – that you drafted for yourself! It looks great as a dress, and I’m impressed that you got such a nice fit in the back without needing a zipper. The marvels of spandex!

    • Sarah Gunn
      July 5, 2015

      Thank you, Amy! I’ve had fun with the pattern for sure 😉

  • Fiona
    July 6, 2015

    This style fits and suits you perfectly Sarah, what a beautiful dress! I love that you had the foresight to get some of each colour way to use together, great idea!

  • Sarah Gunn
    July 6, 2015

    Thank you, Fiona! I loved both and instantly imagined them as companions 😉

  • Lori
    July 6, 2015

    Super fun and stylish dress, Sarah. What a fun mix of fabrics, great idea.

    • Sarah Gunn
      July 6, 2015

      Thank you, Lori! Actually – it was great fun to sew and watch the fabrics play off of each other. 🙂

  • Amanda S.
    July 8, 2015

    What a cute dress! Looks perfect for summer!

  • Heather
    July 20, 2015

    I love your clothes and you always look beautiful, but this may be my favorite yet! I am in what I will call young middle age where I am fighting looking old, but not wanting to look too young. This dress is perfect for this! And I love the fabric and the way you used it. Gorgeous.