A Closer Look at the Lonsdale Dress

As requested, here’s a closer look at the Lonsdale Dress. We’ll take a look at the front knot, the back straps and see how the whole thing goes together. I’ve photographed this dress as best as I can, as the print is rather bright and distracting. I hope this helps clear up your questions!

Let’s start at the front, where there are two variations for tying the knot. You can tie the front in a half-knot or a full knot. Just like tying your shoe! Tie half a knot in the front straps and throw them over your shoulder.

Or, if you prefer the look of a full knot, tie another half-knot to complete the full knot, and then throw the straps over your shoulders!

There are pros and cons for both kinds of knot – the full knot doesn’t slip or move as you wear the dress, but the half-knot lets you adjust the dress during the day. Personally, I like the look of the half-knot myself, but I appreciate the permanence of the full-knot – it stays put! Try wearing your dress both ways and see which you like better.

Then, we’ll go to the back of the dress. You can see the straps are hanging down the back. We’ll poke them through the loops and tie them in a bow!

Poke the strap end through the loop. Since this fabric is seersucker, it’s a bit thick, so I twisted up the strap end tightly and then poked it through the loop.

Pull the strap through the loop tightly. I’d do all of these steps while the dress is off, and then tie the bow once the dress is on you.

This is the great part about the pattern – you can always tighten or loosen the straps, even after the dress is finished! If you switch between wearing a bra and going bra-less, it’s nice to be able to tighten the straps as needed to customize the fit. (Or if you lend your dress to a girlfriend – she may need slight adjustments!)

You could even make it a halter dress – leave off the loops and tie the straps behind your neck. I tried it for one of my samples but didn’t like it that way, as the back doesn’t stay up on its own. (Gertie’s shirred back tutorial might work nicely on this dress to give you a snug fit. I’d love to try it out in a future version!)

You could even twist the straps before poking them through the loops for a different look! The straps do get shorter though, so it may be a little trickier to tie the bow if you don’t have help.

Can I tie the bow myself? Yup! Granted, it’s not absolutely perfect when you can’t see the back. If I were going out on a special occasion, I’d ask someone to help me tie the knot nicely. Most days, I’ll tie it myself though!

And that’s what we’ll do next – tie the ends in a bow! This fabric is hard to photograph and see the details, so I hope you can follow along with me here. I’ll show you again in another fabric, one that’s easier to see.

Amanda suggested you could just knot the straps and let them dangle, if you didn’t want a bow. That works too! If you’re wearing a sweater, or jacket, or a blazer – something where a bow will show through – then I’d either knot or pin the straps together instead of bow-tying them.

Any other questions about the Lonsdale dress? If you missed the original post, see more photos of it here!

Have a great long weekend, everyone! Happy Canada Day and happy Fourth of July! (Pretty awesome that both Canada and the USA end up with a long weekend this year.)

PS. Did you know you can pre-order the Lonsdale Dress pattern? The pre-sale ends on Monday, so sign up for the mailing list today to be eligible for advance ordering and a special offer!

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19 Responses to A Closer Look at the Lonsdale Dress

  1. CGCouture July 1, 2011 at 6:56 am #

    This is a very cool looking dress! The strap and loop detail is genius. :-)

  2. Millie July 1, 2011 at 7:54 am #

    I love the look of this, but I’m a bit chesty, and since there’s no darts or shaping in the bodice, I’m curious how this works for those of us with fuller chests. Does the knot in the front shape it?

  3. Forrest July 1, 2011 at 7:56 am #

    Just ordered the pattern! So excited to make this, hopefully for my birthday dinner!

  4. Tasha July 1, 2011 at 7:59 am #

    Seriously, I cannot stand how ingeniously cute that is! I’m looking forward to seeing some of these made. Rarely do I wear bodice styles like this because it makes me look like I’m all boob, so I will admire from afar. :D

  5. Amanda July 1, 2011 at 8:17 am #

    Must. Find. Vintage. Seersucker!

    Thanks for these photos and the mention :) I was surprised at the negative feedback from some commenters the other day, but you handled it really well. Critique can be a good thing, but I feel like the Internet makes it easy to say things in a harsher way than we would in person. Anyway, I can’t wait to lounge about in the Lonsdale dress!

  6. Ali July 1, 2011 at 9:25 am #

    Not sure I’ve told you this yet, Tasia, but this dress is stunning! So well-designed and beautiful :)

  7. Peppertoast July 1, 2011 at 10:24 am #

    I love this new dress Tasia. I appreciate the unique yet simplistic, well thought out design. I my opinion, that is what educated, independent designers provide for us. Also, your tutorials are AMAZING. I just wanted to let you know I LOVE IT and keep up the good work.

  8. msmodiste July 1, 2011 at 10:32 am #

    I can’t get over how much I love this strap design. (And, I’m on your team, I love the half-knot. Perfection!)

  9. Lisa July 1, 2011 at 11:09 am #

    This is simply beautiful , I love this fabric and I will be pre-ordering :-))

  10. katrina July 1, 2011 at 1:41 pm #

    So glad you posted this because I was confused! I’ve already pre-ordered though, so I thought I’d just wait until the pattern arrived. This is great too for extra variations I wouldn’t have thought of!

    So excited to get this pattern!

  11. Val July 1, 2011 at 1:51 pm #

    I love how you did the straps! I’m so sending this to my daughter’s email. We were wondering how to make her straps work for the dress she’s making for 4H.

  12. Omega Brooks July 1, 2011 at 7:00 pm #

    Wow, cute dress, I love the strap/tie detail.

  13. Jane Elise July 1, 2011 at 7:22 pm #

    Ooh, it’s seersucker! Gorgeous and summery. We’re in winter here in Australia so it’s so nice to see summery dresses :)

  14. Sewingdina July 2, 2011 at 1:51 am #

    I got it totally wrong. I thought the strap was looping through a hole at the front and I didn’t understand the back until this post. I get it now! These are great design details. Looking forward to receiving the pattern and for the sew along to start.

  15. daiyami July 2, 2011 at 6:52 am #

    Sewingdina, I thought the straps looped through a hole in front until just now reading your comment.

    Thanks, Tasia, very helpful! Looking forward to the pattern.

  16. Emily July 2, 2011 at 6:27 pm #

    LOL, funny…I thought the straps looped through a hole in the front too, until reading the last two comments and then looking at the pics again! In case anyone still doesn’t get it…it seems that the straps are cut with the top of the dress as one piece. Very cool.

  17. Sewingdina July 3, 2011 at 2:44 am #

    Lol – I thought i was the only one confused. I’m worried I’ve got it wrong now – can you enlighten us please Tasia? A picture of what it looks like before the first one would be great!

  18. Lucy July 3, 2011 at 8:56 pm #

    Well, I still have no qualms about getting this D/DD chest into this dress. And the more I see it, the more I like it! I also love that you can use easy-to-find fabric like cotton; the other day I bought a pattern for a winter dress (so envious of these northern hemisphere blogs) that turned out to only be suitable for knits. But do you think I can find a knit fabric I like that doesn’t cost a bomb? ‘Course not.

  19. Casey July 6, 2011 at 5:46 am #

    So cute! This is going on my “patterns to buy” list. I love the idea of doing the shirred back (I just tried Gertie’s tutorial over the weekend on a midriff top I made. I think I’m addicted to shirred elastic!) so it can be worn as a halter too. Such a versatile design!