Floral Maxi Dress, Brochu Walker Inspired

22 Jul Floral Maxi Dress, Brochu Walker Inspired

I knew the Brochu Walker dress was  my dress the moment I saw it – even online.


I ordered the gently worn dress from The Real Real at a bargain price and have worn it repeatedly. It’s a maxi (midi on a taller person 😊) that doesn’t overwhelm me, and I was inspired to recreate this silhouette.

(PS… the one on the website at the moment is above the full retail price, but l’ve seen several much lower priced Havana dresses on the website. If you visit the Brochu Walker website, you’ll notice it’s offered in 16 different colors!)


I really like all of the solid colors, but I also envisioned it in other fabrics, such as the florals seen in the dreamy Charlotte Brody dresses.


Simplicity 8384 was in my surviving stash of patterns and the bodice looked similar to the dress’s bodice, especially the neckline. I used this bodice in the seersucker maxi and continue to tweak it!  The darts in the bodice allow for a more customized fit than the RTW.


This go around, I was all about creating a dress with lots of feminine details. I added sleeves embellished with 1 1/2 ruffles and added a ruffle around the collar band.

Ruffle Neckline Ruffle Sleeves
Tiered Midi Dress

I bought five yards of the cotton poplin from the now out of business Fabric.com two years ago and used all of it!  The lightweight fabric is perfect for gathered tiers, and if I had more I might have tried one more – I know, too much of a good thing. I like it just the way it is.😊 


At 5’2″ it’s easy to turn a maxi into a midi! For the skirt, I followed the same path as the seersucker maxi, cutting three tiers the same width. I shortened the length of the top tier by one inch and the bottom tier by two. Three inches was all it took!

I also made a sash for the dress. I’m still experimenting with widths. The maxi sash was three inches wide and this one is two.

As much as I enjoy sewing summer dresses, I  see sewing this dress for the fall and holiday season using sleeve and collar variations. Hopefully there will be more!

Enjoy your weekend!

  • Jackie Armstrong
    Posted at 09:40h, 22 July Reply

    Your e-mails are cropped off at one side and no pictures are included so I am trying to sign up again.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 09:55h, 22 July Reply

      I am so sorry! I think there has been a glitch with this post and I believe it is a WordPress issue. UGH…..

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 09:57h, 22 July Reply

      Please click on the title of the post in your email and see if that helps.

    • Pat
      Posted at 10:03h, 22 July Reply

      FYI I had the same problem. It worked fine for me if I clicked on the post in the email. Good luck!

  • Madeline Rodriguez
    Posted at 09:49h, 22 July Reply

    Love this look!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 12:13h, 22 July Reply

      Many thanks, Madeline – so nice to hear from you!

  • Laura Casey
    Posted at 09:57h, 22 July Reply

    Oh my this is PERFECT on you! I’ve bought a beautiful cotton voile in red and pink, a block print……yes 5 yds, and you’ve inspired me to make a summer dress to take with me to visit my sister…YOU ALWAYS INSPIRE!
    Thank you, LAURA

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 12:12h, 22 July Reply

      Thank you, Laura! Good luck with your dress – Is this a trip to London?

  • Dagmar Perez
    Posted at 09:57h, 22 July Reply

    Hi Sarah,

    Your blog emails come through but without the pictures. There are large blank spaces where the pictures are supposed to be. Is anyone else having this problem?

    Atlanta, GA

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 10:04h, 22 July Reply

      Dagmar, I think several people are having this problem. Sorry. Please click on the title of the post in your email and see if that helps.

    • Leigh Rollins
      Posted at 10:08h, 22 July Reply

      I did but clicked on the the title of the post.

  • Leigh Rollins
    Posted at 10:08h, 22 July Reply

    I really prefer your version of the dress!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 12:10h, 22 July Reply

      Ah…. I appreciate that, Leigh! I really love the fabric of the Brochu Walker and hope to find something similar.

  • Liz Lancaster
    Posted at 10:17h, 22 July Reply

    Love this dress!
    I so enjoy your blog. Glad you are back at it, but also glad you took the time away you needed.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 12:09h, 22 July Reply

      Thank you, Liz! So wonderful to hear from you 😘😘

  • Helen McCleneghen
    Posted at 10:21h, 22 July Reply

    Can you give a few details of the proportions for the skirt?

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 20:51h, 24 July Reply

      Helen ~
      For the seersucker maxi, the tiers were (1) 8.5 x41 (2) 10.x59 and (3) 14x 102. For the floral I adjusted the length of the top layer by one inch and the bottom layer by 2.

  • Lisa Jones
    Posted at 10:34h, 22 July Reply

    Beautiful dress. I have never made myself a tiered dress, but this has inspired me. Did I read correctly that the width of the third tier is the same as the first? Thank you..

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 12:08h, 22 July Reply

      Thank you, Lisa. Each width is wider than the one above. I see why you’re confused. I said each tier is the same width as the seersucker maxi tiers, but the lengths are different. If you’d like I can measure and send the measurements to you.

      • Jane in Colorado
        Posted at 00:17h, 24 July Reply

        Fantastic make! It’s so marvelous to have you back in the sewing world.

        I am also a bit confused with how you designed the tiers. I am thinking you used a fixed amount – like 15″ for the width (short side) of the tier then increased the length of each tier (long side). How did you determine the length? And I’m super curious about the width measurement. I, too, am 5’2″ and have been hesitant to were any type of “maxi” style dress/skirt as they make me look frumpy.

        Welcome back!

        • goodbyevalentino
          Posted at 20:44h, 24 July Reply

          Jane ~ Many thanks for your comment and it’s all about the fit isn’t it? For the seersucker maxi, the tiers were (1) 8.5 x41 (2) 10.x59 and (3) 14x 102. For the floral I adjusted the top layer by one inch and the bottom layer by 2. You won’t look frumpy!

  • Dara
    Posted at 10:35h, 22 July Reply

    Lovely as Always! Thank you.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 12:06h, 22 July Reply

      Many thanks, Dara 😘

  • Bernadette
    Posted at 11:00h, 22 July Reply

    This is a lovely recreation of the sample dress. Glad you are back to posting.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 12:06h, 22 July Reply

      Thank you so much, Bernadette!

  • Roz headley
    Posted at 11:11h, 22 July Reply

    Lovely dress but your posts are not coming through clearly. Some pics are cropped and others are grayed out. Eventually after much clicking around I did see all the photos. I’m really happy you are back sewing and posting.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 12:05h, 22 July Reply

      Thank you, Roz and I’m sorry about the issue. Several other people are experiencing this too. It could be a WordPress issue and I hope to have it resolved soon.

  • Marie in AZ
    Posted at 11:22h, 22 July Reply

    Lovely! The floral print you used is simply charming. I think it would look great in a Liberty of London print as well! I might give that a try. Thank you for the inspiration. I always enjoy and look forward to your posts.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 12:04h, 22 July Reply

      It would look beautiful in a Liberty fabric, Marie! If you make one please send me a pic 😊 Many thanks for the comment!

  • Jennifer Vega
    Posted at 11:28h, 22 July Reply

    Your dress is beautiful! I love the colors and the added feminine details. The fit is perfect – I’d like to try my hand at a dress like this but I am very intimidated with button sewing, even after 13 years of sewin my clothing lol. Great job!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 12:03h, 22 July Reply

      Thank you, Jennifer! You can do it! Practice your buttonholes on a scrap piece of fabric until you get it right. The good news about this dress is it only need two buttons!

  • Marla Cooprider
    Posted at 11:30h, 22 July Reply

    For some reason I can’t see your pictures on your emails. Not sure why. 🙁

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 12:01h, 22 July Reply

      Ugh……. Several people are having this issue. Please click on the title of the post in your email and see if that helps.
      Thanks for letting me know, Marla.

  • Julie Greene
    Posted at 13:32h, 22 July Reply

    This flowered dress is lovely. Loved the seersucker too. My question is: without the buttons all the way down the skirt, how do you get in and out of the dress? Is there a side zipper?

    So glad you are back!
    Thanks, Julie

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 13:57h, 22 July Reply

      Hi Julie and thank you! The dress does not have a fitted waist so it is easy to slip over my head!

      • Julie Greene
        Posted at 14:08h, 22 July Reply

        Thank you. I am going to try that patter with a tiered skirt. Julie

  • Jean Kerr
    Posted at 14:12h, 22 July Reply

    So nice for us that you are back. Your style is wonderful. I love the print from fabric.com (I miss them). It is always great to hear (or read) all about the details, designing, and thought that goes into what you make. Again, so nice to have you back. Jean

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 14:23h, 22 July Reply

      Thank you so much, Jean for your lovely comment! It’s nice to be back. Fabric.com was a great online store and I too miss it. Such great prices and large inventory.

  • Jean Sohl
    Posted at 14:14h, 22 July Reply

    I love your posts and the neat clothing you make. However now the emails do not contain the pictures.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 14:20h, 22 July Reply

      Jean – Several people are experiencing this issue. Please click on the title of the post in your email and it should open the post and all of the content. Sorry about this!

  • Sandy
    Posted at 15:57h, 22 July Reply

    This dress is perfect for you. The floral and color are so pretty. Again, it is a wonderful example of much sewing your own tops ready to wear.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 16:37h, 22 July Reply

      Sandy, I agree….. there’s nothing like sewing your own garments. As pretty as many RTW clothes are it’s just not the same. Many thanks for your comment 😊

  • Barb S.
    Posted at 16:01h, 22 July Reply

    Your email goes off the side and cuts off the words. I have tried it in both Firefox and Chrome. This is not the first time – last email behaved the same. The only way I could view this post was to go to your website and click on the blog entry. Maybe this is a problem with the post program. I enjoyed your post, when I was able to see it!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 16:35h, 22 July Reply

      Barb, I’ve had several comments about this issue today and am not sure what’s going on. Please click on the title of the post in your email and it should open up the post with all of its content. Sorry.

  • Liz Thompson
    Posted at 17:09h, 22 July Reply

    I have been having the same problem with all your latest posts: no pictures. Mostly just blank. I discovered if I clicked on the title, it takes me to the post on your blog. Seems when it arrives n an email, it wont open properly. But I know how to reach it and not miss your fabulous posts so I am OK now.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:58h, 23 July Reply

      Thanks for letting me know, Liz………I’ll get this figured out. 😬

  • Connie M Vogt
    Posted at 17:10h, 22 July Reply

    So happy to see you are back to blogging again! We’ve missed you and your inspiring posts.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:59h, 23 July Reply

      Thank you, Connie! I’m so happy to be sewing and back in touch with everyone 😊

  • Cheryll Kaczkowski
    Posted at 17:29h, 22 July Reply

    You are proof that those of us under 5 feet 3 inches can wear this style. By graduating the depth of each tier, you have created a silhouette that balances height. I prefer your version, the florals are perfect for Summer. Thanks for sharing.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:01h, 23 July Reply

      Many thanks for your comment, Cheryll! It’s true – we can wear most any style provided the proportions are balanced. 😊

  • Joan
    Posted at 18:14h, 22 July Reply

    First, thanks very much for repeating the details of altering the knee area and inseam for fewer creases on your Eleanore jeans.

    This floral midi is gorgeous and very flattering on you! From a 5’1″ person, thank you for explaining your process of shortening maxi layers to be more flattering. The ruffled neckline and sleeve are very pretty and add that je ne sais quoi!

    (These terms midi and maxi seem dated; are there new millennium names for longer styles? Or perhaps ‘tea’ or ‘ballerina’ length: are these terms too formal nowadays?)

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:04h, 23 July Reply

      😂 I just call them maxi and midi…….. and that’s how the retailers advertise dress lengths. I might not have ever started sewing if I was 5’6 or 7 and RTW fit the way it should!
      Many thanks for your comment, Joan!

  • Vanessa King
    Posted at 18:17h, 22 July Reply

    Similar problems with seeing the email, so I click through to the post on web page, then it works fine. Lovely dress!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:05h, 23 July Reply

      Sorry about these issues, Vanessa and I’m glad you figured out how to get here.😊

  • De
    Posted at 19:03h, 22 July Reply

    I like the print and embellishments you added. This gives he dress a bit more class than the one from Real Real. Thanks for sharing your method for upgrading the look.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:07h, 23 July Reply

      Thank you, De! Amazing what a ruffle or two can do 😊😊

  • Billy Gunn
    Posted at 19:11h, 22 July Reply

    I liked the one you got from Real Real as soon as I saw you in it. But the one you made is. my preference!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:07h, 23 July Reply

      Ah…… thank you dear Billy!

  • Marysia Paling
    Posted at 20:44h, 22 July Reply

    Lovely to see you sewing again. Like everyone else issues with no pictures showing 8n the email.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:08h, 23 July Reply

      Marysia, If you click on the title of the post in the email it should load with all of the content. Sorry about this issue. 😬

  • Glenna Williams
    Posted at 21:49h, 22 July Reply

    Your new romantic dress is just beautiful. You do such good work on all of your sewing.I will be looking to see if I have Simp.8384..

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:10h, 23 July Reply

      Thank you so much Glenna! I believe the pattern is still available if you don’t have it 😊

  • Kelly Mercer
    Posted at 22:16h, 23 July Reply

    I’m so glad you’re back! I get so much inspiration from you and I really appreciate how you explain all the changes that you make to a pattern. This dress is so beautiful. I like it more than the ready-to-wear dress. Thank you! Kelly

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 20:45h, 24 July Reply

      Thank you sooooo much, Kelly!

  • Catty Andry
    Posted at 08:30h, 24 July Reply

    This is really cute! Is there a zipper? I will investigate!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 20:33h, 24 July Reply

      Thank you, Catty! There is no zipper. The waist is not fitted so I am able to easily pull over my head.

  • Lindsay S
    Posted at 12:53h, 24 July Reply

    This is so beautiful! Could you describe how you tweaked the bodice of S8384? I’d like to make something very similar but I’m pretty new to pattern modifications

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 20:32h, 24 July Reply

      Hi Lindsey and thank you! I shortened the bodice length of 8384 by approximately one inch. The back of this pattern is gathered with elastic which I substituted with darts. I also adjusted the side seams for a closer fit. This was all done on a muslin of course 😊

  • Judy Duerson
    Posted at 16:36h, 24 July Reply

    I really like your version of the dress. Looks nice on you! I am glad you are posting again!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 20:25h, 24 July Reply

      Thank you, Judy. It’s so nice to hear from you and hope all is well in KY!

  • Aimee Groshans
    Posted at 09:20h, 25 July Reply

    Welcome Back ! Always inspired by your makes. I was excited to find I have S8384. Made up a muslin and not crazy about the elastic in the back. I’m glad I read through the comments that you replaced the elastic with darts, great idea. Would love to know how you made the ruffled sleeves and neckline. Thanks again for all the information you share.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 09:47h, 25 July Reply

      Thank you Aimee and it’s nice to be back! For the neckline, I cut a 4″ strip of fabric, twice the length of the neckline, folded the fabric in half, stitched the ends right sides together, gathered and attached to the neckband before attaching the facing.

      For the sleeves, I cut two 4″ strip of fabric twice the circumference of the sleeve, stitched the ends right sides together so that it was a circle, folded the fabric in half, gathered and attached to the sleeve.
      Hope this helps

      • Joan
        Posted at 12:28h, 25 July Reply

        Thank you for the ratio and dimensions for adding a ruffle to the sleeve and neckline, Sarah. I wondered about the amount of ruffling (ratio) you chose.

  • brenda
    Posted at 14:23h, 26 July Reply

    I love this dress. I wouldnt have a clue how to adjust a pattern to make this but it certainly looks great on you. I am so glad you are back, I have missed your posts.

  • Jennifer Mariel Shaw
    Posted at 17:44h, 31 July Reply

    Your version of this dress is so beautiful! Customizing the pattern by adding the back darts as well as adding the ruffles to the neckline and the sleeves is brilliant! I am so happy to be reading your blog again. You are very inspirational with all of the gorgeous clothing that you have created.

  • Pamela
    Posted at 13:33h, 01 August Reply

    What a pretty girly dress! Really like the ruffles you added to the sleeves and collar.

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