Merry & Bright in Sequins!

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17 Dec Merry & Bright in Sequins!

I’d say the catch phrase this holiday season is Merry & Bright, and I fell right in line upon seeing Mood Fabrics’ glittering silver baby sequined fabric!

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I’ve owned a few formal sequined dresses over the years, and while sequined ball gowns are still around, shifting trends in the fabric now feature more relaxed styles from cocktail dresses to t-shirts. I made the dress for an annual Christmas dinner party and chose a simple pattern to keep the dress from appearing too formal.

My base pattern is  New Look 6524, a shift pattern I purchased a while ago for the sleeve variations. My original plan was to sew View B.


Before making a muslin I had to remove the bust dart, and followed Maria Denmark’s tutorial for a perfect result. The tutorial is slightly time consuming but 100% accurate and provided me with a clean bodice front.

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The sequins are sewn on mesh and the fabric tends to s t r e t c h easily. The fabric is also heavy.


Staystiching the shoulders, armscye and neckline immediately upon cutting prevented shape distortion.


After inserting an invisible zipper and attaching the shoulder seams I basted the side seams several times until the fit was just right. The photo below will give you an idea about how the fabric behaved.

Photo 1 is the muslin after I removed the bust dart. I pinned out a little excess along the side to get the fit I wanted.
Photo 2 shows my first round of fitting the dress. Although I knew the stretch in the fabric would provide a larger fit I wasn’t expecting the baby doll effect. It’s also too short.
Photo 3 shows the garment fitted to my satisfaction with the hem pinned and lowered. I removed up to two additional inches on each side.

sequinAfter attaching the shoulders and basting the side seams, I decided the ruffle sleeve was too much of a good thing and chose a simple cap sleeve to keep the style classic and relaxed.

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But now ….. the lining…….. oh my goodness. I bought the pewter stretch charmeuse in Florence from Casa Dei Tessuti  in 2015. I bought it to line my Mother of the Bride dress for Mimi’s wedding which I never made. It is luxurious.  I almost regret using it to line a dress that will be worn occasionally, but it elevates the dress immensely. I must find more without traveling to Europe!


Sewing with sequins is not difficult 🙂

Keep a trash can close at hand as the sequins will scatter with gusto when the fabric is cut.
Sequins can dull your scissors so it’s best to use a dedicated pair of scissors.
I used a denim needle for the dress and a microtex needle for the charmeuse.
Although I’ve read that ‘finger pressing’ sequins is recommended, I pressed the seams with an iron using a silk organza press cloth.

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The season to glisten and shine has arrived ~ Happy Holidays to all and a big   T h a n k   Y o u  to Mood Fabrics!

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15 more days until the 2018 RTW Fast begins!
Join Me with your R.S.V.P. to: by December 31

Please include Your Name, Photo, Facebook Name and Blog Address (if you have one)

  • Becky Bagwell
    Posted at 08:40h, 17 December Reply

    Beautiful! Another perfect fit!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 08:49h, 17 December Reply

      Thank you, Becky!

  • Susan Owens
    Posted at 08:57h, 17 December Reply

    Thanks so much for the fitting photos. Good to see the process.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 09:08h, 17 December Reply

      You’re welcome, Susan! It’s hard to predict how stretch fabric will begave 😉

  • Carol Lovrich
    Posted at 09:05h, 17 December Reply

    Beautiful dress. Thank you for the post. Very lovely.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 09:39h, 17 December Reply

      Thank you, Carol!

  • goodbyevalentino
    Posted at 09:09h, 17 December Reply

    Thank you, Carol!

  • MaryEllen
    Posted at 09:27h, 17 December Reply

    Wow this is so pretty ! I’ll have to look at the tutorial as I’m not sure with my FBA I can eliminate a dart .
    Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 09:40h, 17 December Reply

      Many thanks, Mary Ellen! The dart removal tutorial is for all sizes – it’s definitely worth looking into 😉

  • Mary Anne Chambers
    Posted at 09:29h, 17 December Reply

    Very festive without being OTT! I love the simple lines, that showcase this fabric beautifully. Thank you also for the detailed fitting instructions with pictures. Some fabrics are just so unpredictable, it is so hard to know how they will fit.
    Just perfect!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 09:41h, 17 December Reply

      … and this was one of those fabrics 😉 I Really wanted to keep it simple and classic and am pleased with the result. Many thanks for the comment, Mary Anne!

  • AJW
    Posted at 09:34h, 17 December Reply

    It is a gorgeous dress, as usual, Sarah. Question about removing the darts–is that because darts in sequinned fabric are a huge headache? What does one do if darts are absolutely essential? Would welcome your wisdom. And best holiday wishes to you and yours!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 09:45h, 17 December Reply

      Yes, darts are not recommended for sequinned fabric, otherwise I would have left the darts in. I think I would stay away from complicated patterns that require darts if you are sewing with sequins unless you have the ability to manipulate the fabric.
      Many thanks for the comment!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 14:04h, 17 December Reply

      Please read Mary Funt’s comment – very helpful.

  • Kathleen Wille
    Posted at 09:48h, 17 December Reply

    Did you take the sequins out of the seam allowance or just sew through them? The thought of having to take them out of the SA keeps me from trying sequined fabric.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 10:16h, 17 December Reply

      I did not remove the sequins. The denim needle sews right through them, although these are small sequins. 😉

  • Sharon Kane
    Posted at 09:51h, 17 December Reply

    Beautiful dress. Thanks for all the tips and reference sources; also for communicating to sewists to make the garment work for you, ie adjusting sleeves to what looks good on YOU, adjusting hem length to what looks good on YOU. Thank you for your continued inspiration.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 10:17h, 17 December Reply

      Thank you Sharon and you are so right – when sewing for yourself it’s all about YOU which is the beauty of it all 😉

  • Robin L Denning
    Posted at 10:08h, 17 December Reply

    lovely – I am a huge fan of simple patterns and this is why!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 10:18h, 17 December Reply

      That makes two of us! Many thanks, Robin 🙂

  • Shari Emery
    Posted at 10:20h, 17 December Reply

    Stunning!! Beautiful fit!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:22h, 18 December Reply

      Thank you, Shari!

  • Leigh Rollins
    Posted at 10:28h, 17 December Reply

    Lovely! I always look forward to seeing your creations.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:22h, 18 December Reply

      Many thanks, Leigh!

  • Eva Hoepelman
    Posted at 10:28h, 17 December Reply

    Great dress – it looks fabulous on you!!!!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:23h, 18 December Reply

      Thank you so much, Eva!

  • Debi
    Posted at 10:44h, 17 December Reply

    Absolutely stunning!!!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:23h, 18 December Reply

      Many thanks, Debi!

  • Diane G
    Posted at 11:02h, 17 December Reply

    Such a gorgeous dress! The simple style is perfect to let the sequins shine.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:25h, 18 December Reply

      Thank you so much, Diane! I may try a sheath next time around, but I agree, keeping it simple was the way to go 😉

  • Jackie Shepherd
    Posted at 11:35h, 17 December Reply

    The dress is simple and beautiful. Thank you for including photos of your fitting process.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:25h, 18 December Reply

      Those fitting photos aren’t the prettiest things to see but I’m glad they are helpful 🙂 Many thanks for your comment, Jackie!

  • Becky Welch
    Posted at 11:41h, 17 December Reply

    Your dress is absolutely beautiful! I really love it! I can’t help but wonder, can this be dry cleaned?

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:27h, 18 December Reply

      It will have to be dry cleaned, Becky. My old sequinned gowns were dry cleaned so I’m assuming this dress will be too. Many thanks for your comment 🙂

  • joyjc
    Posted at 11:50h, 17 December Reply

    My, but you did an excellent job on this dress! The fit is perfect and you look absolutely radiant in it! Great job!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:29h, 18 December Reply

      Thank you, Joy! I won’t say the fitting was tricky but simple designs must fit perfectly to avoid the sack-like look. 😉

  • Beth (SunnyGal Studio)
    Posted at 12:02h, 17 December Reply

    super cute! I love a sequin dress.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:30h, 18 December Reply

      Hi Beth! Many thanks – I love a sequin dress too, and wish I had more opportunity to wear them 😉

  • Carolyn
    Posted at 12:23h, 17 December Reply

    A beautiful holiday dress!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:33h, 18 December Reply

      Thank you, Carolynn! Merry Christmas 🎄🎄

  • Linda LaMona
    Posted at 12:33h, 17 December Reply

    Gorgeous holiday dress! Looks great on you! Still thinking on joining RTW fast!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:34h, 18 December Reply

      Thank you so much, Linda! I hope you’ll join – it’s going to be a fun year 🙂

  • Patricia Pfeiffer
    Posted at 12:41h, 17 December Reply


    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:34h, 18 December Reply


  • Mary Stein
    Posted at 13:23h, 17 December Reply

    Had to laugh a bit this morning when I noticed the new Vogue with a silver sequin dress on the cover – you’re a trend setter for sure!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:38h, 18 December Reply

      If only I could master the yoga pose like Lupita Nyong’o – LOL! Many thanks for the comment, Mary 😉

  • Irene Mischkinis
    Posted at 13:52h, 17 December Reply


    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:38h, 18 December Reply

      Thank you, Irene!!!!

  • Mary Funt
    Posted at 13:57h, 17 December Reply

    Perfect holiday dress. The fabric, style and fitting are spot-on. I looked at Maria’s site and she has some great tips for altering patterns. Those familiar with dart manipulation will realize that her method shifts the dart point to the underarm and it may not work for very large busts and non-stretch fabrics. It worked beautifully for you and eliminated a troublesome dart. I also have started using stretch silk charmeuse lining and absolutely love it. It’s so luxurious next to the skin!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:40h, 18 December Reply

      Thank you for your helpful advice – I am referring questions to your comment.
      Now, where do you find good quality stretch silk charmeuse?

  • Marie Z Johansen
    Posted at 14:30h, 17 December Reply

    Just WoW! This dress is a stunner. I love the simplicity of it! Your fitting is perfection and you really do look radiant in it! Thanks for sharing you process so thoroughly…be merry.and bright.. happy holidays!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:42h, 18 December Reply

      Thank you, Marie 🤗 Merry and Bright it is!

  • Jennifer Shaw
    Posted at 15:52h, 17 December Reply

    Wow! What a gorgeous dress. So simple and elegant. Wishing you a very Happy Christmas and New Year.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:45h, 18 December Reply

      Many thanks, Jennifer! It’s easy to forget that simple and elegant go hand in hand more often than not.
      Merry Christmas to you too 🎄🎄

  • Vanessa Thomas
    Posted at 15:56h, 17 December Reply

    You definitely glisten and gleam in this silver sequinned winner!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:46h, 18 December Reply

      Thank you, Vanessa! It was a fun project, just wish I had more opportunity to wear it…….. then again it’s a memorable garment 😉

  • Joan
    Posted at 16:42h, 17 December Reply

    Sarah, Lovely job, lovely on you!

    Really appreciate when you share fabric behavior comments, alterations, pitfalls and successes!

    Happiest holidays to you and yours!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:48h, 18 December Reply

      Many thanks, Joan! Fitting photos aren’t always the loveliest things to see, but I’m glad they are helpful.
      Happy holiday to you, too! 😊😊

  • Julie Starr
    Posted at 17:18h, 17 December Reply

    Now this is the recipe for a perfect holiday dress – simple silhouette and FAB fabric!! I’ll bet your outfit was the hit of the party. I agree that stretch charmeuse is the ultimate luxury lining for knits.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:49h, 18 December Reply

      Thank you, Julie! It was perfect for the event ;). Where do you find stretch silk charmeuse? I really want to use this fabric more often!

  • Lucy
    Posted at 18:46h, 17 December Reply

    Perfect sequin holiday dress!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:49h, 18 December Reply

      Many thanks, Lucy!

  • Marian
    Posted at 21:01h, 17 December Reply

    I am 78 years old and spent most of my adult career working for a very upscale retailer. Being around beautiful and expensive clothing was what I did for a living. I never sold anything in my 20+ years, but I enjoyed being around beautiful designers and scrumptious fabrics. My mother sewed beautifully and did lots of sewing for me when I was growing up, and she sewed a lot for my daughter. My sewing skills limited though they are were used when I was young, my children were little, and money was tight.

    When I read your blog and look at you in your lovely creations you make me wish I were young again and that I could actually learn to become a better seamstress. I have been seriously ill and just out of a six-day stay in the hospital so I cannot thank you enough for your sharing of instructions, photos, information, and stunning pictures of you in your finished garments. I feel certain that your fan base will continue to grow and your wardrobe will become fuller in 2018.

    God Bless you and your family at this wonderful holiday season.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:52h, 18 December Reply

      Thank you for a most moving comment, Marian. I hope 2018 brings you good health and happiness 🙂 Happy Holidays to you and your loved ones.

  • Renee
    Posted at 21:09h, 17 December Reply

    Cap sleeve was the right choice. What a fun holiday dress.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:54h, 18 December Reply

      Thank you, Renee! I’m glad I kept it simple. -far more versatile this way 😊

  • vicki Maiorano
    Posted at 04:36h, 18 December Reply


    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:54h, 18 December Reply

      Thank you, Vicki!

  • Danielle
    Posted at 07:42h, 18 December Reply

    Love the dress! So glad you mentioned how you sewed thru the sequins with a denim needle. I just finished a pair of sequin track pants, and *EVERY* online source I could find said to cut the sequins off the SA. What a commitment when you’re working with such stretchy fabric!!! Found one tutorial that used a heavy needle and it changed my life!! And thanks for the muslin/fit pics. Nice to know the pros even use trial and error at times…lol

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 09:22h, 18 December Reply

      Thank you, Danielle!
      I believe sequins these days are lighter in weight than those from a generation ago, and I can’t imagine removing the sequins from the seam allowances. I’ve seen those tutorials as well.
      I bet your track pants are fantastic 😊

  • Sandy
    Posted at 08:06h, 18 December Reply

    Beautiful job. I loved seeing the muslin and your fitting photos.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 09:23h, 18 December Reply

      Many thanks, Sandy! So glad to know the photos were helpful 😊

  • Yolanda Fastle
    Posted at 10:15h, 18 December Reply

    So lovely! I love everything you do. Question, I have replied to the RTW fast. Will I receive a confirmation as such? Thank you!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 13:40h, 18 December Reply

      Thank you, Yolanda! Yes, you will receive a confirmation. I have outsourced the registration but will check in to make sure it has been received 😊

    Posted at 11:57h, 18 December Reply

    Sarah, I love your sequin dress and all the hints to better sew with sequins. I LOVE your blog and read it to uplift my day!! Happy Holidays and enjoy wearing your beautiful creation : )

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 13:37h, 18 December Reply

      Well you’ve just uplifted my day, Anne! Many thanks for your comment 😊

  • Melinda Garcia
    Posted at 20:07h, 18 December Reply

    Another stunner! Both Mood and Emma One Sock have many colors of stretch silk charmeuse.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:19h, 19 December Reply

      Thank you, Melinda! They certainly do and I’m ordering samples. 😊

  • Graca Resendes
    Posted at 23:28h, 18 December Reply

    Beautiful dress and the fit is perfect. And I can’t believe you were able to press it. Your work is impeccable.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:20h, 19 December Reply

      Many thanks for your nice comment, Grace! A silk organza press cloth lets one press almost anything without repercussions ….. and I pressed lightly 😉

  • Janet Brand
    Posted at 12:13h, 19 December Reply

    I am very tempted to join the ready to wear fast 2018. I’ll have to give it more thought before I commit though.
    I’m wondering do you make a muslin for each garment that you create?

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 12:27h, 19 December Reply

      Hope you join, Janet! I make a muslin for most but not all garments. If I am concerned at all about size or technique I make one. Yes, it takes more time, but I have yet to regret making a muslin 😉

  • Catherine
    Posted at 13:28h, 19 December Reply

    Great looking dress! Loved seeing your process.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 05:58h, 20 December Reply

      Many thanks, Catherine 😀😀

  • Helen Lorah
    Posted at 16:40h, 19 December Reply

    This is a beautiful dress. Your posts are always so helpful. Have a beautiful Christmas.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 05:58h, 20 December Reply

      Thank you so much, Helen!

  • AllisonC
    Posted at 18:05h, 19 December Reply

    Happy holidays to you too, you certainly look ready for the season! Lovely dress and it must feel amazing to wear, interesting too to see how it is worth making even small changes to the fit to get the look that you want.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 05:57h, 20 December Reply

      Thank you so much, Allison! I believe in keeping at it until I’m pleased with the result 😉 Sometimes a complete pain to do but always worth it!

  • Maggie ecger
    Posted at 19:12h, 19 December Reply

    I love glitter during the holiday season. Just beautiful!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 05:56h, 20 December Reply

      Thank you, Maggie! I’m so pleased with the result 😀😀 Merry Christmas!

  • Leitner Winstead
    Posted at 22:02h, 21 December Reply

    Very pretty- you and the dress!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 09:48h, 24 December Reply

      Many thanks, Leitner😀

  • Mary Funt
    Posted at 10:00h, 22 December Reply

    For those searching for stretch silk charmeuse, try They carry 97 colors. Prices are very high unless you wait for one of their sales. Subscribe to the mailing list and you’ll get sale notifications. They are having a 45% off sale until Christmas. In addition to Mood and Emma OneSock (mentioned in a previous comment) Denver Fabrics also carries it and I’ve found shipping fairly quick. NY Fashion Center has the widest selection of colors but their shipping can be slow. I usually keep a running list of colors and amounts I want so I’m ready when the sale notice comes.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 09:48h, 24 December Reply

      Thank you for the info, Mary!

  • Tomasa
    Posted at 14:11h, 24 December Reply

    Such a beautiful dress. It is happy and festive, perfect for the holidays! Merry Christmas!

  • Mother of the bride outfits UK
    Posted at 11:40h, 30 December Reply

    What a fabulous dress! You look very glamorous. I think the cut and finish of the outfit looks utterly beautiful and the length really works well. Fantastic!

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