Lady in Red – Style Arc Jessica Dress

Big changes afoot for me shortly – I am currently working from home, but as of next week, we are moving to a proper office. As one would expect, this has good and bad aspects, but for me the most important consideration is – what will I wear?!!!

As of right now I have just seven work dresses; two winter dresses and five summer dresses, one I am not loving as a work dress (it’s a little low cut) so really only four.  Obviously I have some work to do to resolve this. Rather than go through the inevitable shopping pain, I have started on making a new work wardrobe. One of the dresses counted in the four/five is this one I made a couple of weeks ago, the Style Arc Jessica Dress.

Jessica Dress

This was my first Style Arc experience, and I have to say I am not overly impressed. I would be even less impressed if I had bought the pattern (I borrowed it). Don’t get me wrong, I don’t hate the pattern, I just think there are so many things that could be done better i.e. multi-sizing, instructions, fabric layout map. I am sure most people are aware of these issues with StyleArc.

I made this dress in a size 14 (pretty accurate to my measurements), but shortened it between the shoulders and bust by 1.5″, and took an inch off each side and narrowed the shoulders by about 2″, and took about 2″ off the hem. I guess this may make it a petite (short) size 12?? or even maybe a 10?

Jessica Dress

I used a crepe knit from Spotlight that I was originally going to use for a wrap dress (the wrap dress is still on the cards, just this leapt the queue, c’mon you’ve all been there!)

Construction on this was reasonably straightforward, although it is probably better to use common sense than the instructions. The twist is not as complicated as it looks, it is simply a loop made with one side of the front and then the other front fed through it. I actually twisted one side 180° as I felt that made it sit better.

Almost the whole garment thing can be made on the overlocker and I did the hemming on the cover-stitch. This make is a relatively quick make, being knit, the fit is quite forgiving, although I had to do some fiddling as the whole thing was way too big initially. Not being experienced with StyleArc patterns I can only assume their sizes run large?

Jessica Dress
Perhaps a slip might be in order to prevent some clinginess?

– comfortable – work PJs for the win!
– reasonably easy to construct
– it’s red!
– suits a curvy figure, especially needs bewbs to fill out the top I think

– in my opinion the sizing is off as this needed a lot more fiddling than a knit dress would normally require
– I’m not truly sure this is my style, it feels a little clingy/revealing in the back, but I need to try with granny undies or a slip and this may fix it
– the shoulders still feel too wide for my liking

Jessica Dress


Like Lizzy says “it is perfect casual workdress – I don’t have to look super-corporate every day so it’s a great choice for those days at the desk when you just want to be comfortable.”

I won’t be making it again though – I want  to try a few other knit dress patterns that might be better for my shape.  V1191 is a similar pattern but has a set in sleeve. I have a couple of wrap dresses planned: V8379 and M6713 (totally going to have to do a bike pose for this post). And then, the one I am most excited about and currently top on my list V2876 – I love this dress and really hope it works well for me.