english girl at home

A Sewing & Knitting Blog, Made in Birmingham, England

Floral Velvet Wedding M7154


M7154 in Floral Velvet

So here’s a dress that was long in the planning! Two years ago, my brother James announced his wedding. Not long before that, McCall’s had released M7154, a 1930s reproduction pattern. I loved M7154 on release and when the wedding was announced thought it was the perfect excuse to try the pattern.

M7154 in Floral Velvet

M7154 in Floral Velvet

Despite having two years advance warning (and the pattern in a drawer for that time), I, of course, waited until a few weeks before the wedding to make a start on my dress. I actually did the majority of the sewing in the week before the wedding, in the evenings after work. I finished the hem of the dress on the morning of the wedding, along with finishing touches to a wedding jacket for my brother and his wife’s dog, Rupert… I was staying at the venue, and had my bedroom set up as a sewing room, with machine and sewing supplies spread across the dressing table.

M7154 in Floral Velvet

M7154 in Floral Velvet

The wedding venue was a fort on the Cornish coast, which you can spy in the background of my photos. It was a beautiful wedding and we had a lovely weekend, and even decent weather for February – with the exception of during the official photos, when it poured!

M7154 in Floral Velvet

M7154 in Floral Velvet

My fabric is a floral velvet purchased from Barry’s Fabric. Barry’s have a small rack (near the till) which contains a selection of fabrics which are kept out back (mainly velvet and fake fur), presumably due to a combination of price and the space the bolts take up.

Phil was wearing a purple suit to the wedding, so I started off attempting to buy a purple or pink velvet for my dress. However, due to needing five metres, available options were limited – I had the staff in Barry’s back and forth checking pretty much every velvet on the rack… I love the fabric I did come away with though – and I have a little left to make something more casual, given the impracticality of this dress.

M7154 in Floral Velvet

M7154 in Floral Velvet

I’m not a toile-girl, so I went straight into making the pattern ‘for real’, and adjusted as I went. I made quite a few adjustments to better fit the dress for my body, and to tweak the design:

  • The pattern has you continue the zip from the back of the skirt up to the top off the dress along the bodice lining. Based on the bodice construction, I could see this being fiddly, and I didn’t want the lining to be visible at the bodice back. Instead, I finished the zip at the skirt waistband and added a hook and eye at the waistband, as well as at the top of the bodice (as per the pattern);
  • Initially the bodice hung very low. I raised it by unpicking the bodice at the shoulder seams and trimming off approximately 2 inches from each of the four straps.
  • The bodice is intended to hang over the skirt, but I had a lot of excess fabric at the bodice back, which hung awkwardly. I suspect this was partially due to using a heavier-weight fabric than recommended. I unpicked the bodice back from the skirt as far as the side seams and reduced the bodice length – pinning and eyeballing until it looked right;
  • I cut approximately 4 inches off the length at the skirt hem.

I also found the instructions for sewing the neckline to the bodice at the front and shoulders unnecessary fiddly, and would recommend following your own common sense on those sections.

M7154 in Floral Velvet

M7154 in Floral Velvet

Photos of what you really want to see from the wedding, Rupert’s dog jacket, to follow!

M7154 in Floral Velvet

M7154 in Floral Velvet

M7154 in Floral Velvet

M7154 in Floral Velvet


Author: Charlotte

Sewist, crafter & blogger, based in Birmingham, England. I'm spending the year growing and gathering to create natural dyes and enhance my sewing projects. Find me at www.englishgirlathome.com

23 thoughts on “Floral Velvet Wedding M7154

  1. This is such a stunning dress – I’m sure you had lots of admirers at the wedding. I don’t recall seeing those fabrics in Barry’s, but I’ll take a look next time I’m there, because that velvet is awesome!

    I particularly love the back view where you are standing on the bridge, that really shows off the design of the dress. By the way, also love your hair in these photos.

  2. Gorgeous dress and such beautiful photos! I would never have thought of making this in a belve but absolutely love it! The color is just beautiful on you! I have this pattern in my stash and don’t want to make it after seeing yours!

  3. The dress is very beautiful. I personally really like the fabric choice, the print is lovely and works well with the pattern! Your photo are also very beautiful (and green! the world is completely white here in Montreal). I admire you also for starting and finishing the dress in so little time, and for not making a muslin! I would be very stressed to make adjustments on such a beautiful fabric!

  4. What an amazing dress! The back view is so unusual und pretty.

  5. Your dress looks amazing – so much detail in that style! I’m also in awe that you didn’t make a toile and got such a good fit!


  6. Gorgeous! I love how the hem falls, and you look so great!

  7. From one Charlotte to another you look stunningly elegant. I love the neck and backline of this dress and the fabric is a perfect match for your colouring. I’m not sure pink or purple would have looked as great as the autumnal tones in this fabric. My brother is also getting married this year (June) and I’ll be making a thigh split Anna dress. I was hoping to lose a bit of weight before the wedding but don’t want to leave it too long to toile and make. Dilemmas…

  8. I love the detailing on the back of this dress, and it’s absolutely fabulous in velvet – you brave, brave woman. And having been to a wedding a few years back at Polhawn Fort, I can vouch for the venue too. Bring on the dog jacket..!

  9. Beautiful dress – well worth the effort.

  10. Stunning dress, the velvet looks awesome.

  11. This dress is stunning! The detailing at the neck line is fabulous.

  12. That is beautiful! Awesome job! I love being invited to things that allows fancy dresses you can make with vintage inspiration! (yes, that one time. I hope maybe there will be another at some point in the future. 🙂 )

  13. I can’t believe you went straight for your gorgeous fabric! I can only hope to be so confident one day. Stunning dress — it has a perfect quiet elegance to it.

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  15. Really gorgeous! It fits so beautifully! Hope you get to wear it again one day!

  16. What a dress!! I love the cutouts around the neckline, you look stunning!

  17. This is amazing, so beautiful and the photos are stunning.

  18. Wow this is beautiful! I would never have thought to use velvet for this and this is a particularly lovely choice of velvet! you are so brave to dive straight into this tricky design with no toile! It turned out fantastic and must have been so much fun to make

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  21. I’m making this dress in a few weeks. How did you finish the insides of the seams?

  22. Pingback: Floral McCall’s M7154 in a Field | english girl at home

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