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Drumroll please... We give you, the Charlie Dress!

Finally ready for your sewing pleasure (and ours!), we couldn't be more excited to present to you the Charlie Dress!

Some of you may remember that we originally released the Charlie bodice, along with a draft-it-yourself quarter circle skirt in association with Simply Sewing magazine at the end of last year. It seemed we weren't the only ones to fall pretty hard for this design (and we heard from a lot of overseas sewists who sadly hadn't been able to get their hands on a copy), so we got straight to work getting Charlie ready for an official release, and with two brand new skirt variations to boot!

Charlie is the Summer dress to end them all! The killer bodice features a close fitting bandeau-style with princess seams, shoulder straps, an elegant fold-over neckband and discreet side seam zipper. Choose from an uber feminine tiered gathered skirt or the simpler, swingier ¾ circle. And, as with most of our patterns, we have already had some pattern hacking fun! Why not add an Anna skirt to the bodice? Or the Holly trousers? Or make up the skirts separately - as ever, the world is your playground...

Light to medium weight woven fabrics will work best - for Variation 1 try quilting cotton, chambray, lawn, cotton silk, viscose rayon etc. Variation 2 is much the same as Variation 1, but also flannel, linen, eyelet will work a treat.

We will be hosting a sewalong for the Charlie Dress mid August - keep an eye out here on our Instagram for official dates - which will be jam-packed with the usual detailed step by step instructions, pattern hack inspiration and alterations tutorials. If this is your first foray into the world of dressmaking, or you like a little hand holding along the way as you navigate new techniques, then the sewalong is for you!

As ever, there's quite literally nothing we love more than seeing the way you guys interpret our patterns, so get making and get sharing!! Tag us on Instagram and Twitter @byhandlondon so we can see your Charlies using #CharlieDress and #ByHandLondon, and inspire others at the same time! Alternatively, please feel free to post on our Facebook page, or drop us a line at

As ever, a HUGE thank you to two very talented ladies who have become indispensable to our pattern production process: Anna Walker, for her beautiful fashion illustrations, and Katie Marcus, for her InDesign skillz and technical diagramming prowess (and endless patience!). And, of course, not forgetting our lovely and gawjus muse, our pattern's namesake, Charlie Moorby who has the very enviable job of being the Editor no less of Simply Sewing magazine! Jealous? Us? Absolutely.

Comments on this post (6)

  • Aug 19, 2016

    Hi Lesley, sorry to hear you’re having trouble attaching the neckband! It can be a little fiddly – are you sandwiching the end of the shoulder strap between the wrong side of the bodice and the neckband? You need to be lining up the raw edge of the neckband with the raw edge of the bodice’s neckline. Hope this helps! ~Elisalex

    — Elisalex - By Hand London

  • Aug 18, 2016

    Hi, I’m making the Charlie dress just now and am at the stage if attaching the neck band and I’m confused! I can’t see how to attach the neck band without the straps getting caught under it and becoming too short. Also am I lining up the raw edge or the folded edge of the neck band with the top of the bodice? Any help much appreciated and I’m sure with a bit of advice all will become clear. Thanks in advance.

    — Lesley Morris

  • Aug 15, 2016

    Hi Machin, Thanks for your kind words! Unfortunately we don’t actually sell the dresses themselves, only the pattern and instructions so you can make it at home. I hope this helps! ~Elisalex

    — Elisalex - By Hand London

  • Aug 13, 2016


    How are you doing if I want order please?
    So beautiful dresses!!!
    I want to buy and what size?

    — Machin Heinui

  • Jul 28, 2016

    Now that is a stunner….huge congrats!

    — Ashley

  • Jul 28, 2016

    Loving Charlie!!!

    — Deb Cameron

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