DIY, sewing

My Anniversary Dress – The Erica

Hey Guys,

I am super excited๐Ÿ˜ about my latest project because it turned out much better than I imagined. I made this dress to wear for our recent couple’s photo shoot.

We will be celebrating our 25 year anniversary at the beginning of January and I thought that It would be fun to do a photoshoot this time around.

For this dress I used the new Erica pattern designed by Erica Bunker. Erica teamed up with Style Sew Me Patterns to create this classic beauty.

When I first laid my eyes on this pattern, I knew immediately that I would be making it. Turtleneck dresses are my favorite style of dress to wear when the temperatures drop.

I really love the style of this one in particular because of the back opening.

Fabric Details

This is a Ponte De Roma that I purchased online from F.W.D (Fabric Wholesale Direct). I decided to try it out after reading all of the great online reviews. This fabric retails for about $8.99 per yard and comes in many different colors. This fabric was great to work with because It’s a little thicker than what I have seen at my local JoAnns and has really good recovery.

I went with this gorgeous shade of Royal Blue as a nod to my husband’s favorite football team, the New York Giants. Over the years, I have tried to buy him at least 1 New York Giants licensed item for our anniversary. This year I thought it would be fun if we took pictures wearing one of the team’s colors.

4 Things I Like About This Pattern

Front & Back Views

This pattern is offered in a PDF format. If printed at home, there are 48 pages. If printed at a copy shop, there are only 3 pages. For this dress, I ended up having it printed at a copy shop AND printing it myself again at home.

The sizes on the pattern pieces range from XS – XXXL. While my instructions included bust, waist, and hip measurements to select sizing between 0 – 20, they did not explain exactly which number sizes correspond to the letter sizes printed on the pattern pieces. After reaching out to Support@StyleSewMe.Com, this information was promptly provided.

This pattern is drafted beautifully and the pieces went together without a hitch.

  • The bodice has bust darts and is drafted for a C – cup. – In my opinion the added darts make the bodice look and fit much better.
  • The back is open but is bra friendly. – pasties, duck tape, and backless bras do not work for me. I prefer and need the support of a standard bra.
  • The turtleneck fits me perfectly. – It has a snug fight and is the perfect height. It can be worn folded down or raised like I am wearing it here in my pictures.
  • Only print the size you need. – As I mentioned earlier, I had this pattern printed at the copy shop and I printed it at home. After working with both, I actually preferred the home printed copy because I was able to select and print only the size that I needed. Multiple sized patterns make me crazy confused sometimes.๐Ÿ˜œ

Pattern Adjustments/Modifications

Although I do plan to make up a version with the full skirt, I wanted something a little more dramatic for my 25th anniversary pictures.

  • Short Waist Adjustment – While this pattern does have the waistline marked, the back waist length is not provided. This information is crucial for my body type because I often have to remove length from the bodice of my dresses and tops to get a good fit.I attempted to get the information by email, but that did not work out so I was left to figure it out on my own. In the end I removed my usual 1.75 inches and it seemed to work out.
  • Added a fitted skirt – I wanted a Mermaid/Fishtail look so, I separated the bodice from the skirt at the waistline and inserted a self drafted straight skirt. I added the flared skirt piece that I removed to the bottom edge of my skirt to serve as the tail. It worked out perfectly.
  • Added button loops, covered buttons, and a concealed zipper Because of the design changes that I made I added matching button loops and covered buttons at the neckline along with a concealed zipper placed an inch below the back opening.


Now that this dress and our anniversary pictures are all done, I need to start working on a few personal projects. I am taking a few online classes and I have some home improvement projects that need to be completed.

I probably won’t be sewing too much the rest of November through December but I will still be posting to the Blog.

Until next time…..