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The winner of the Sew Iconic book giveaway is commenter #69, Denise, who said:  “My fave always has been the polka dot that Julia wore. Looks like a great book!”  Congratulations!  I know you’ll have fun sewing up your own version of the Julia dress!

Sew Iconic by Liz Gregory takes us to the movies, showing how to sew 10 dresses made famous on the big screen.  Included in this book are patterns and instructions to make

– the brown & white polka dot dress that Julia Roberts wore in Pretty Woman

– the little black dress that Audrey Hepbrun wore in Breakfast at Tiffany’s

– the pink mambo dress that Jennifer Grey wore in Dirty Dancing

– the white halter dress that Marilyn Monroe wore in The Seven Year Itch

– the green evening dress that Keira Knightley wore in Atonement

– the black showgirl dress that Catherine Zeta Jones wore in Chicago

– the blue chiffon gown that Grace Kelly wore in To Catch A Thief

– the black sheath gown that Rita Hayworth wore in Gilda

– the fawn coat dress that Faye Dunaway wore in The Thomas Crown Affair

– the lace evening gown that Kate Winslet wore in Titanic

The book includes printed patterns for all 10 of these dresses, basic instructions for sewing them up, and styling tips for completing the look.

Skill level for this book is a confident intermediate sewist.  Though there are patterns and instructions to make each dress, the patterns are one-size-only that you will need to grade up or down to fit your measurements.  There isn’t a sizing guide, so there may be some trial and error in order to achieve the best fit.  The instructions give a good overview of the construction process, but a beginner may need more detail about how to complete the steps.

 My Julia Roberts Dress

As part of the review, I got a chance to sew up one of the dresses from this book.  I chose the brown and white polka dot dress that Julia Roberts wore in Pretty Woman.  I have always loved the easy elegance of this dress!  I was so excited to get to sew up my version of it!

I made several modifications while I made the Julia Roberts dress.

First, I chose a 100% cotton interlock knit instead of the recommended silk or poly/cotton.  I would actually have preferred a rayon challis, but I couldn’t find one in a polka dot print.  The interlock has a similar drape and is comfortable to wear in a hot Arkansas summer.

Then, because the interlock is a stretch knit, I was able to omit the zipper down the back.  This simplified the construction.  Yay!

I followed the book’s suggestion and made a muslin before cutting into my good fabric.  But because the fit was only critical through the shoulders and bust, my muslin only came down about 4 inches below the armpit.  I’m stingy with my fabric like that.

As I said before, the patterns are one-size-only so you’ll need to make adjustments to fit the dress to your measurements.

I’m rather small through the shoulders and bust, so adjusting it was just a matter of taking it in at the seams.  If you are larger than their patterns, the resizing may be a little more complicated.

I’ll give you my measurements and adjustments to give you a rough idea of the sizing of their pattern.  I have a 32” bust and typically wear a size2 or 4 top.  I took 3/8” off of the shoulder seams, ¾” off of the side seams, ¾” off of the center front seam, and 3/8” off of the center back.  Based on these adjustments, I’d say their basic patterns are a ready-to-wear size 6 or 8.

Finally, their method for sewing in the facings was unfamiliar to me and I was not able to understand their instructions.  I used an alternate method instead.

I took my styling cues from the book’s suggestions: straw hat with a matching sash, white gloves, and simple earrings.

Now that I have a working pattern for a basic tent dress, I’m already planning some non-movie-related variations.  How cute would it be as a mini dress without the belt and made from a silky fabric in a bold graphic print?

The Giveaway

I’ve got a copy of Sew Iconic to give away to one of our readers.  To get yourself entered in the giveaway, just leave a comment here telling me which of the dresses in the book is your favorite.  I’ll choose one comment at random as the winner.

Giveaway ends Thursday, July 12, 2012.


By Anne Weaver

Have you entered all our giveaways?


95 Comments so far

  1. lynaeve on July 4, 2012 12:37 pm

    I love audrey hepburns dress. I hate to be the first comment, but thanks for the giveaway anyway even if first never wins lol

  2. Annette watkinson on July 4, 2012 12:40 pm

    Rita Hayworth, Gilda dress, just need the hair to go with it

  3. April on July 4, 2012 1:00 pm

    How fun would this be to have for Halloween! Thanks for the chance

  4. Kat on July 4, 2012 1:18 pm

    Anne! It looks so great!!!!!! I now need this book!!! It came out so perfectly! I have had a serious crush on that Atonement dress for a while now!!!

  5. Jessie H on July 4, 2012 1:43 pm

    tough choice trying to pick 1 favorite, i’ll put it this way i’d make the black dress that Audrey Hepburn wore in Breakfast at Tiffany’s first lol

  6. Lee on July 4, 2012 1:50 pm

    hands down the little black dress of Audrey Hepburn in Breafast at Tiffanys. thanks!

  7. Nora Charles on July 4, 2012 2:41 pm

    I’ve always loved the Audrey Hepburn little black dress!!!

  8. Simone C on July 4, 2012 4:13 pm

    I would LOVE to do the green dress from Atonement, but there is no way that dress would look good on this body – so, it would be the fawn coat dress that Faye Dunaway wore in the Thomas Crown Affair

  9. Emma on July 4, 2012 4:22 pm

    I love Audrey Hepburn’s dress, though I don’t know what I’d wear it to!

  10. Roni on July 4, 2012 4:41 pm

    I would make the Dirty Dancing dress!!…then the Breakfast at Tiffany’s.

  11. Ruth D on July 4, 2012 4:41 pm

    I’m with you, Julia Roberts’s Pretty Woman polka dress that she wore at the polo match.

  12. jen on July 4, 2012 4:43 pm

    audrey hepburns breakfast at tiffany’s dress!

  13. Kathleen on July 4, 2012 7:07 pm

    Such a fun looking book-I think I’d like to try Faye Dunway’s coat dress in The Thomas Crown Affair-there are so many iconic looks in the movie as a whole, and it’s one of my favorites to watch because of it.

  14. Kristen Arland on July 4, 2012 7:13 pm

    I think my favorite would have to be either the Julia Roberts polka dot or the Jennifer Grey mambo dress. You did a great job on the dress!

  15. Juli on July 4, 2012 7:54 pm

    Grace Kelly’s blue gown, and I’d wear it to the grocery store at least once a month just because I could.

  16. Dollie on July 4, 2012 8:55 pm

    I’m going to have to go with Marilyn’s dress in The Seven Year Itch. For some reason, I just love that one :)

  17. MelodyJ on July 4, 2012 9:16 pm

    The real question is which don’t I like. My favorite has to be Kate Winslet’s Titanic dress.


  18. Christina on July 4, 2012 10:41 pm

    I love the Atonement dress!

  19. Marie on July 4, 2012 11:51 pm

    Hard to choose. The green dress from Atonement was amazing.

  20. Dee on July 5, 2012 12:30 am

    Absolutely love the gown from Titanic!

  21. Sarah B on July 5, 2012 12:32 am

    Love the Julia Roberts dress. Gorgeous!

  22. Beverly on July 5, 2012 12:33 am

    Audrey Hepburn’s dress would be my favorite.

  23. Qiwen on July 5, 2012 12:35 am

    The white halter dress that Marilyn Monroe wore! :)

  24. Elisabetta on July 5, 2012 3:00 am

    I love Audrey Hepburns dress.
    it’s everlasting

    thank you so much for this giveaway =)

  25. Emelie on July 5, 2012 4:14 am

    The titanic dress – it’s so fancy :)

  26. Renina on July 5, 2012 4:32 am

    The little black dress that Audrey Hepbrun wore in Breakfast at Tiffany’s.

  27. Michaela on July 5, 2012 5:14 am

    The Audrey Hepbrun dress from Breakfast at Tiffany’s, it can’t be anything else.

  28. Anna (sixtyfourcolorbox) on July 5, 2012 5:42 am

    I really want to make all of them, but in particular, I want to make the pink Mambo dress and Julia Robert’s dress.

  29. Mandy L. on July 5, 2012 5:52 am

    It would be a tie between the Audrey Hepburn dress or the Marilyn Monroe dress! I love them both! What a cool book!

  30. Kristi on July 5, 2012 6:00 am

    I would love the Winslet Titanic dress the most. I love your pics of your dress, especially the last one, so cute!

  31. Melissa Thomson on July 5, 2012 6:10 am

    This is a great giveaway! I love how the dress you made looks. I would want to make the I Catch A Thief dress. Anything Grace Kelly.

  32. linda on July 5, 2012 6:45 am

    a cross between the “little black dress & the polka dot dress”

  33. Mary Mac on July 5, 2012 6:46 am

    Your dress is beautiful. This book would go to my sister.

  34. Cathy on July 5, 2012 6:50 am

    Wow, how can you pick a favorite when all of them are just wonderful. I would make every one of them.

    Thanks, Cathy

  35. Julia on July 5, 2012 7:22 am

    Oh gosh, I think I’d have to go with Baby’s pink dress from Dirty Dancing! How could you wear a dress like that and NOT dance? :D Thanks for the giveaway, and your Pretty Woman dress turned out beautiful!

  36. Colleen E on July 5, 2012 7:30 am

    Even if these aren’t my size, I’d love to see how the green dress from Atonement is made!

  37. Missy K. on July 5, 2012 7:37 am

    Wow. That is a tough choice. They are all great dresses. I would have to say Marilyn’s halter dress. I have always wanted one of those.

  38. patricia on July 5, 2012 7:45 am

    Marilyn Monroes dress is a must have for halloween!

  39. Connie on July 5, 2012 7:53 am

    Wow, what a great book for those of us who love classics. My favorite would have to be the fawn coat dress.

  40. Heather M. on July 5, 2012 7:57 am

    It would have to be a toss up between Audrey Hepburn’s and Kate Winslet’s. Either way, I’d give the book to my daughter who loves to sew and could wear the dresses well.

  41. laura on July 5, 2012 8:17 am

    I love the green evening dress that Keira Knightley wore in Atonement!

  42. Josanne on July 5, 2012 9:13 am

    It’s hard to choose just one of these dresses.. Maybe because green looks good on me I’ll go with Keira Knightly’s dress in Atonement

  43. Donna Foster on July 5, 2012 9:23 am

    I would love to make The Marilyn Monroe dress!

  44. tia on July 5, 2012 10:00 am

    My favorite is the lace evening gown from Titanic. But they are all gorgeous!

  45. Serena on July 5, 2012 10:03 am

    Wow so many I would love to make So hard to pick but I will go with Jennifer Greys Dirty Dancing dress

  46. Diana on July 5, 2012 10:20 am

    I really love Marilyn Monroe’s halter dress, but I like a lot of the others too!

  47. NICOLE on July 5, 2012 11:07 am


  48. Claire C on July 5, 2012 11:27 am

    What a great book this is as a giveaway, I would love to get hold of a copy. I’ll try to win it first, and if I don’t win it I will buy it for myself or drop plenty of clues to get it for my birthday, which isn’t too far away.

    The dress I have chosen has got to be the white halter dress that Marilyn Monroe wore in The Seven Year Itch.

    Thanks for this chance to win it.

  49. Veronica likes to sew alot on July 5, 2012 11:35 am

    the white halter dress that Marilyn Monroe wore in The Seven Year Itch

  50. Carmen on July 5, 2012 11:42 am

    I love the blue chiffon gown that Grace Kelly wore in To Catch A Thief

  51. Jolene Lew on July 5, 2012 11:52 am

    the green evening dress that Keira Knightley wore in Atonement!!! :D

  52. melody on July 5, 2012 2:15 pm

    I would make the Black beaded dress Catherine Z-Jones wore in Chicago. A dress like this could be worn for many generations to come and passed down as an heirloom garment. Love it!

  53. Julie B on July 5, 2012 3:15 pm

    Breakfast at Tiffany’s would be the first dress I would want to make!

  54. Jane S. on July 5, 2012 3:58 pm

    I dearly love the dress that Grace Kelly wore in To Catch a Thief. It’s classic style on a classic beauty! Thank you for the nice giveaway. :)

  55. Callie Callender on July 5, 2012 5:34 pm

    I’d love the pink mambo dress from dirty dancing!

  56. Lucia on July 5, 2012 7:06 pm

    I love the Julia Roberts dress. It is the only one of these dresses that I would feel comfortable wearing. If I wore the others, I would feel as if I were in a costume, a lovely one, but playing dress-ups.

  57. Hueisei on July 5, 2012 9:28 pm

    I love the polka dots Julia Dress.
    Thanks for the chance to win.

  58. Judith (from Israel) on July 5, 2012 10:22 pm

    My favourite is the the fawn coat dress that Faye Dunaway wore in The Thomas Crown Affair.

  59. Ussury on July 6, 2012 4:22 am

    First I’d like polka dot dress (Pretty Woman), but my husband votes for the pink mambo dress :-)

  60. Brenda on July 6, 2012 5:19 am

    I like the book so many ideas Thanks

  61. AnnieDee on July 6, 2012 5:45 am

    I’d have to agree that this is a tough pick but in the end, I’d choose Rita Hayworths black sheath gown. thanks!

  62. Terry Kessinger on July 6, 2012 5:49 am

    While each of the dresses are amazing and would make any closet proud, the fawn coat dress is a classic I’d love to undertake .

  63. Linda on July 6, 2012 5:54 am

    Wow – what an amazing book! Love to have it!

  64. Kim on July 6, 2012 6:14 am

    Oh my goodness, what a difficult choice. It is probably the green evening dress from Atonement but gee, it was a hard choice.

  65. Christina on July 6, 2012 6:24 am

    Titanic dreess, Thanks for the giveaway!

  66. Lettetia on July 6, 2012 6:31 am

    They are all beautiful dresses, but I have to say the most intriguing for me would be the black sheath gown that Rita Hayworth wore in Gilda. Good luck to all who enter!

  67. sande on July 6, 2012 6:53 am

    easily, kate winslett’s titanic dress

  68. Marianna on July 6, 2012 7:39 am

    My favorite — by far — is the Faye Dunaway coat dress!

  69. Denise on July 6, 2012 8:41 am

    My fave always has been the polka dot that Julia wore. Looks like a great book!

  70. Nidia Yanez on July 6, 2012 9:02 am

    This is a fabulous collection of classic dresses! Your dress looks perfect! My vote would have to be the Gilda dress, I read that Ms. Rita attributes two reasons they this dress stayed up ;)

  71. Tara on July 6, 2012 9:03 am

    My favorites are the dirty dancing dress and the fawn coat dress.

  72. Katy on July 6, 2012 10:54 am

    I would love to have the green dress from Atonement, but my body shape is a lot closer to Kate’s in Titanic, so I’d make that one first…..and then wear it everywhere. So pretty.

  73. Kelly Croasmun on July 6, 2012 11:46 am

    My favorite dresses are the Kate Winslet dress as well as the Marilyn Monroe halter dress. I always wanted to make that halter dress in red! I would feel like a million bucks in it. :)

  74. Ruby Murray on July 6, 2012 12:19 pm

    I would LOVE to make the Keira Knightley Atonement dress, it was beautiful and ALMOST made it worth watching the movie!

    Thank you for the awesome giveaway

  75. Rina on July 6, 2012 1:49 pm

    Titanic Lace evening gown, closely followed by atonement and Audrey :)

    I would have to make them all :)

  76. Judianne on July 6, 2012 7:51 pm

    How awesome and what a clever idea for a book. Count me in! Your dress turned out just lovely, Pretty Woman!

  77. Kathrynn on July 6, 2012 8:58 pm

    I really like the Audrey Hepburn dress

  78. Mari on July 6, 2012 9:23 pm

    I love the dress that Kiera Knightly wore in Atonement. It’s so gorgeous!

  79. Jocelyn Jones on July 6, 2012 10:28 pm

    I would love to have this book!!! First I will make the Pretty Woman dress! I love love LOVE that look she had in the movie. Gorg!!!

  80. Judy on July 7, 2012 5:16 am

    I’d love to have them all, but either the Marilyn Monroe or the Dirty dancing dresses would be first.

  81. Nancy on July 7, 2012 8:10 am

    What a great post! Thanks for the valuable info you discovered while making your dress and sharing it with us. I just Love the dresses in this book and would Love to win!!

    Thanks Again,


  82. Sants on July 7, 2012 3:00 pm

    I love them all. All of them.
    But if I had to choose, it would be the Audrey Hepburn.
    And the Marilyn. And the Julia. And … and … and. Oh never mind.

  83. superstitches on July 7, 2012 4:02 pm

    This book looks wonderful. I love the Audrey Hepburn dress.

  84. Brenda Gibson on July 7, 2012 5:11 pm

    I think I like the pink mambo dress best.

  85. Kelly K on July 8, 2012 2:12 pm

    oooh Marilyn and the pink mambo dress from dirty dancing..so iconic

  86. Judianne on July 8, 2012 2:32 pm

    My daughter would just be stylin’ in these dresses and she adores Audrey Hepburn; I’d love to win it for her.

  87. Larissa` on July 8, 2012 10:17 pm

    Audrey’s little black dress!

  88. Jowyn Jenson on July 9, 2012 8:16 am

    I love the Audrey Hepburn dress. Please let me win !!!!

  89. Jill on July 9, 2012 8:51 am

    How fabulous would it be to make Audrey’s little black dress? Too bad I quit smoking – guess I’ll need one of those electronic cigarettes to pull off the look…Do they make those with the little extension thingy? :o)

  90. Petia Nakova on July 9, 2012 10:31 am

    I love Julia’s dress! Always wanted to know how to make it :)

  91. Judianne on July 9, 2012 6:06 pm

    Lots of fun projects. Your dress turned out lovely. My daughter would love this pattern book.

  92. Isabelle on July 10, 2012 2:23 pm

    I absolutely love the blue chiffon gown that Grace Kelly wore in To Catch A Thief! It’s stunning!!

  93. Sandy on July 10, 2012 2:26 pm

    Of course I have to love the iconic black dress that Audrey Hepbrun wore in Breakfast at Tiffany’s!!! it’s always beautiful!! :) thanks for the giveaways!

  94. Nancy B on July 10, 2012 8:16 pm

    That’s tough. Audrey Hepburn or Jennifer Grey dress.

  95. New Book, Sew Iconic, Shows How To Make Ten of Hollywood’s Most Iconic Dresses | Adsinstyle.Com on August 17, 2012 6:55 pm

    [...] Simon and Co. recreated the pink mambo dress made famous by Jennifer Grey in Dirty Dancing, while Anne Weaver from Craft Gossip chose to make the brown and white polka dot dress Julia Roberts wore in Pretty Women. While both [...]

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