Wouldn’t it be great if we could have one dress, or two that never goes out of style? What if the fabric could not be dated, nor the color? What about a classic style that would look great on multiple body shapes, is this asking for too much? Is this just for a mens world?

I took some time to think of an article of clothing that has remained unchanged for a century. Researching I found that men keep their clothes longer than we do, spend less money and still look great. The mens button up shirt is a great example of slow fashion and a garment that has been in style for almost a century.

I decided to sew a women’s shirt dress for this project. I took a simply comfortable design and replicated it. The original was from the late 1970s or early 1980s. Since I’m short I made my dress shorter.

Once the dress was finished I put my concept out into the universe for feedback. I got a ton of comments on the cut, style, color and fit. These are the things I will change when I make this dress again, better draped fabric, deeper side seam pockets, matching colored buttons and I will omit the chest pockets as there is no need for them. I learned a lot from this project, getting positive feedback from friends really helped.

I definitely need to make this dress again and again. I wish I could buy some extra time as I have none right now.


I’m so silly, after making my dress I remembered I made a similar dress from the 1940s. I began to wonder if every decade has a shirt dress popular style. I know there was one in the 40s, 50s, 80s and 90s because I own the patterns.


Here is another dress I could wear every day, it was a 1950s replica.  I’m quite comfortable in this dress and my cat, Karma loves it too.


If you were designing a styled for a century everyday dress what would yours look like?

Behind the scenes~

Last week I visited my friends in Fla and went to Flip Flop Quilt Shop.

Thank you for reading!

Tracy McElfresh

Tracy McElfresh

Tracy McElfresh is the owner of Tracy’s Sewing Studio LLC.
Tracy McElfresh