Saturday, September 19, 2020

Beatrix Dress in Tresco by Liberty of London

I don't know if I should call it kismet, destiny, coincidence or just plain good sense. When I wore my Liberty maxi dress to Quiltcon 2020, and entered the Morris Textiles booth, it was clear a creative relationship was inevitable. Leisa and I connected over the wonderful Liberty of London, William Morris and fabrics by other British designers she sells. Her store is based in Austin which meant I could get my British textile fix this side of the pond. Top of my list were the Liberty of London sewing patterns. 

I was really interested in the Beatrix dress 

Before now, the cost and shipping from UK sources made me hesitant to take the plunge. In addition, I was reluctant because there were few pattern reviews or photos of those pieces on "real" people. Leisa and I decided that others in the sewing community probably had those same reservations, so we decided to partner to make these patterns in Liberty Fabrics.

How fabulous is this Beatrix dress in Liberty Tresco Lawn from Morris Textiles?

This dress was an easy pattern to make if you are familiar with any of the big four patterns companies. The pattern tissue, measurements and instructions read like a McCall's sewing pattern. 

I love this pattern as shown on the package cover, but I decided to add some style modifications to fit my lifestyle. That's the beauty of sewing though, isn't it? With a tweak here or there and you can make a garment completely your own. Theoretically, I love the dramatic look of the deep V of the bodice of the Beatrix. Practically, however, there is no way I  want to be that exposed, nor do I want to find and wear an adhesive bra to achieve the pattern look.

When cutting the bodice I winged the adjustment to give it a little more modesty. I added two inches to the width of the front facing. When constructing the neckline, I folded the excess in under the bias tape as instructed by the pattern.

Morris Textiles Brand Pattern Weights available in my Etsy store.

When I came to the V, I brought the folded edges of the facing together and stitched that area closed.

A front slit is fabulous on this dress, but it is a little too flash risky for me. It's not Halloween and with a strong wind I don't want to give the world a treat! I decided to switch the center slit to the right side seam. I don't mind showing a little bit of leg especially when I have the full coverage in a maxi dress. With a strong gust of wind, I can still maintain my dignity.

When I started this dress, I intended to make the included cuff for the sleeve. Once I cut it and pinned it to my dress form, I loved the billowy effect of the unbound sleeve. I played with it and decided to switch to a casing with 1/4" elastic. I loved the idea of adjusting the density of the sleeve and wearing it at varying heights.

Soft and fully extended

Elbow height and folded under

I think the easy breezy nature of this print plays well with the new sleeve modification.

I made the dress in size 12 which corresponds with my measurements for the big four patterns. I am 5'8" in flat feet and I did not add any additional length to the skirt. The back of the dress is cinched in with a fabric tie to give added shaping to the bodice.

This fabulous dress has side seam pockets. I will say this is the only feature of this dress I am not 100% in love with. The top of the pocket is anchored in the bodice seam making the opening a little higher than I usually like, but it is not a deal-breaker. I may choose to lower them in future makes of this pattern.

The print is gorgeous and this lawn is airy and flirty. I love this dress. It feels like a cool glass of lemonade on a hot summer day. 

I enjoyed this and the pattern weight collaboration we did using her Liberty fabric quilt block designs. We are having fun and I am looking forward to what we will do in the months to come.

Happy Sewing,


  1. Oh my goodness, I wish I had your talent! This is just breathtakingly beautiful, and you look gorgeous in it. If I made it, people would be looking at me out of the corners of their eyes, and wondering what I was trying to do. On you, it's a beautiful burst of color in a summer garden! Love the dress, love the smile, and love that you thought about making it cute but modest. Perfection!

    1. Thanks so much! I think the key for me is to embrace whatever I make. I love it and it shows.

  2. Oh wow, your dress is so gorgeous. Those colours look stunning on you and your alterations turned out so well. 👏💕👏

  3. This dress looks beautiful! I love all the modifications you made, too. The versatility of switching out the cuff for elastic is a cool idea, and that fabric is perfect. I have been wondering about these patterns, so I’m glad you collaborated on this. All around great idea!

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  5. Hi there! I love, love, love what you have done with this fabric and dress. I'm working on a muslin and I got stumped at the application of bias tape to the back neckline. Also, looks like you opted for a facing on the front (my directions say to turn over the seam allowance twice on the front neck edges, no facing, and I don't see any pattern pieces for a facing on front or back). I think I like the way you did it much better. Perhaps I should just skip Steps 5 to 8 and make a front and back facing (and interfacing) instead. Is that what you did? And I'm going to copy you on a higher neckline and side slit.

    1. Hi There!
      I'm sorry for the late response. You are correct, there is no facing pieces so I drafted my own and applied interfacing to the fabric before attaching it to the dress.
      Best of luck with your version.