Shift Style Maxi Dress With the Cutest Sleeves!

by Koetiquemade
8 Materials
3 Hours

If you are new to sewing apparel and knit fabrics freak you out, then I have the perfect pattern for you. The Cadence dress by Love Notions. It’s a wonderfully simple pattern and great for sewists who are comfortable with quilting fabric. In this post I will show you how I took a simple shift style dress, combined the sleeves from another pattern I like and made a dress that perfectly suits my style. I always look at pattern instructions as more of a suggestion anyway.

The Patterns

The Cadence Dress is a shift-style dress & top meant for wovens. Darts at the bust give the dress shaping, while the ease through the waist and hips give you a comfortable, easy to wear fit. The neckline and arms are finished with facings for easy construction.

The Ballad Blouse is the perfect addition to your spring and summer wardrobe. This design is meant for woven fabrics with drape and features a functional button-down placket with an easy to wear silhouette that gives you plenty of ease at the waist and hips.

The Fabric

What drew me to th e Cadence dress pattern first and foremost was the simple construction and that it was made for woven fabric. I also really liked the Maxi length dress option with the split hem. I had some gorgeous woven polyester fabric from that was going to be perfect for this.

The Changes

I never sew a pattern without making a few changes and this pattern was no exception. Since the dress is so simple I wanted the sleeves to have a little detail. So I decided to use the sleeves from another Love Notions pattern, the Ballad Blouse. I used the puff sleeve option because I liked the little tie detail. I didn’t need to make any adjustments to either pattern to do this.

I simply cut them both out as they were and put them together. I think the puff sleeve worked so well with the Cadence dress because the sleeve is gathered at the shoulder. Those gathers could be adjusted to fit the arm hole of the Cadence dress perfectly.

Add a Belt

The Cadence dress had the option to do a casing for a drawstring or elastic. Honestly, I just didn’t want to do either of those. Instead I opted for a belt. I cut 2 fabric strips that were 3inches x 36inches. I sewed them together to make one long strip of fabric.

Then I used fusible interfacing to line half of each fabric strip the long way. I folded it in half, right sides together, and sewed down the open side. I left a two inch opening in the back middle so that I could turn it right side out.

Once it was sewed I turned it right side out, gave it a good press with some steam and did some topstitching to keep it in shape. I made some carrier loops for the side to keep the belt at my waist. I have super easy tutorial on my instagram reels here.

Neck Facing

Rather than having a bias binding, the neck of the Cadence has a facing. I really love the clean finish of the neck facing. Some people get frustrated with them because they don’t stay in place. Something I do to help is I do a “stitch in the ditch” at the seams.

Here I did it at the back seam and at each of the shoulder seams. When I do this, it really helps the facing not move around. It’s hardly noticeable and makes a big difference. I also did top stitch close to the edge as well.

Simple yet Sophisticated

This dress came together so fast! It was right around 2 hours. I feel like if you are just getting into sewing apparel or have been sewing apparel for a while, this dress would be a great pattern to have in your collection. You can use code KOE10 to get 10% off this pattern or any other

Happy sewing!


About the Patterns

Cadence Dress Features:

  • Meant for woven fabrics
  • 3 lengths: shirt, knee length, and maxi
  • Knee length slits on maxi
  • Optional casing for drawstring or elastic
  • 5 sleeve options: tank, short, 3/4, flare and bishop
  • 2 neckline options: scoop and notched scoop
  • Full Bust option

Sizes: XS-5X (See Size Charts here)

Skill Level: Confident Beginner

Ballad Blouse Features:

  • Meant for woven fabrics with drape
  • Five sleeve options: sleeveless, short sleeve with cuff, puff with ties, flutter and bishop
  • Full bust option
  • Two shoulder options: gathers or shirring
  • Video to walk you through the more complex parts

Sizes: XS-5X (See Size Charts here)

Skill Level: Intermediate

Dont’s forget, code KOE10 will get you a 10% discount.

Suggested materials:
  • 3 yards of woven fabric
  • Pins
  • Fusible interfacing
See all materials

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