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Petal Sleeve Princess Seam Dress -- Worthy of a modest prom dress

petal sleeve dress, great for prom

Lovely Princess Seams, Petal Sleeves. Make your own modest prom dress.

My pre-teen daughter and I decided that our first project would be the petal sleeve dress. She is big enough to fit in a size 2 women's, and growing rapidly. So I ordered the dress in size 2-4-6 for her and 10-12-14 for me. For this order I used PayPal, receiving a bill for the products plus shipping. Total time from ordering was a bit long, but they warn you about that on the site, so I wasn't in a hurry. Be prepared to wait up to 6 weeks for your pattern to be printed and delivered.

The pattern pieces are well marked, instructions clear, and fairly easy to follow. Estimated fabric needed was extremely generous, so I suggest copying your pattern piece to tracing paper and estimating by layout how much you'll need. I had forgotten how difficult a princess seam dress can be, so I made mine first for mistakes to get worked out. Indeed, I tried to adjust for a size 12 top and size 14 bottom of the dress, only to end up with my shoulder seam too far back. I sewed the size 2 dress for my daughter exactly, and it was fine.

On my dress I added length to the short sleeve pattern piece for a 3/4 sleeve. For my daughter's dress, I used the petal sleeves. Having never made petal sleeves before, I did have to consult with a more skilled seamstress neighbor for help. As soon as she pointed out how they must fit together, it went fine. My daughter also wanted me to add a ruffle at the bottom of the dress. She wears a long sleeve jewel necked lycra shirt beneath her dress to keep her elbows and collarbone covered. I wear a black sleeveless lycra undershirt to keep my upper neck covered.

My daughter chose the fabric, a heavy burgundy synthetic satin. It's actually got a black cross weave, so black fabrics highlight it wonderfully. I think that with satins, velvet, or velour, this dress would make an excellent modest prom dress. The square neckline is delicate and dainty. This picture doesn't do justice to how lovely it looks on my daughter.

side view petal sleeve dressfront view petal sleeve dress

I can whole heartedly recommend this pattern. I am excited to have another pattern from Common Sense!

Here's a video on how to sew a princes seam:

Ordering from CommonSense Patterns has added secure ordering, and given their site a new facelift. John and Kathy wrote to say that fulfillment time is now down to about three weeks. Note, that you can order internationally and have your patterns shipped. Visit

I just noticed, that when it's season, has Prom dress fabrics available online.

If you're a size 14 - 44 and looking for modest prom dresses ready made online, you can check out Sydney's Closet Modest Special Ocassion Dresses.

Another thrifty idea for modest prom dresses is to buy on You can often pick up a dress at deep discounts through the auctions. Below are some of the current auctions on modest prom dresses:


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