Styling the Marianne Dress

I love stripes. Always have, always will. So when I made the samples for the Marianne Dress I wanted to keep the homage to my Parisian landlord true to itself and use stripes. I hunted far and wide for the best stripes and when I saw the organic wool knit at The Fabric Store in Los Angeles, I knew it was the right choice. It is almost like a sweater knit, but not heavy and retained the flow that I was looking for. Perfect. You however might not want stripes, and just because I have had a life-long obsession with stripes, I would never want to imply that this is the only way to style your Marianne Dress.

Choosing sample fabrics is a really tricky business. Consider my Derby Dress and Chelsea Dress patterns. Originally I picked all Liberty of London prints (except for one striped fabric) because I love Liberty and I felt it was a lovely, feminine, and timeless choice. But I quickly realized that if you're not into flowers, you had a hard time envisioning yourself in the dress. So when I redid all my images this year, I went out of my way to pick basics, only using solids, stripes, polka dots, and simple geometric prints that would have a more universal appeal. But of course, these are only samples and the joy of sewing for yourself is customizing it over and over for yourself and for loads of styles and situations.

So, other than organic wool knit stripes, what can you use for your Marianne Dress? TONS! Let's look at some awesome internet samples, which are all found on the Marianne Dress inspiration board on Pinterest. And yes, some of these are stripes, because this dress looks great with stripe variations.


- - - - - Metallics - - - - -

Need an easy to sew holiday dress? Make it out of a stretch metallic knit! I picked up some fabric yesterday to do exactly this! 
Sources 1 - 2 - 3 - 4


- - - - - Florals - - - - - 

How fun are these floral knit and solid sleeve & binding combos? LOVE! The dress becomes sporty and feminine all at once. Super fun and modern. 
Sources 1 - 2 - 3


- - - - - Colorblocking - - - - - 

Use a different fabric for each piece! For #2, you can use the front of View A and the back pieces from View B! For #1 and #3, simply chop the dress piece for View B at the hip, add seam allowances, and cut an alternate fabric for the hem!
Sources 1 - 2 - 3 - 4


- - - - - Fancy - - - - - 

It can be hard to find these kind of stretch fabrics, but if you do, this dress can easily be made up into something fancy for a special occasion! 
Sources 1 - 2 - 3 - 4


- - - - - Solids - - - - - 

There's nothing wrong with just choosing a lovely solid! And as in #1, you could make it a maxi!
Sources 1 - 2 - 3 - 4



Sources 1- 2 - 3 - 4


- - - - - Stripes - - - - -

Omit the cuff, and just use the 3/4 sleeve by itself!
Sources 1 - 2 - 3



Sources 1 - 2 - 3 - 4


- - - - - Solid & Stripes - - - - -

Use a solid color at the top and on the sleeves, or combine a solid with a stripe sleeve!
Sources 1 - 2 - 3 - 4



Sources 1 - 2 - 3 - 4


- - - - - Shirt Length - - - - - 

And of course, you can always shorten it to a shirt length if you want!
Sources 1 - 2 - 3 - 4


I hope this gets your ideas flowing! There are loads of ways to style and rework the pattern to your personal tastes. I can't wait to see what you all do with it! The possibilities are endless!