Built By Wendy – Hothouse Flowers Dress

Being a mom of two little kids (ages 3 years, and 8 months) I don’t really have much time to sew…  Nor take photos of the items I do complete!  I made this dress last spring while I was very pregnant with my son.  We’ve been having a really nice spell of weather at the moment, so I snuck outside during naptime to grab a couple of photos.  Sorry for the poor quality, I had to use my cell phone because my hubby took the camera out of town for the weekend.


It’s the Hothouse Flowers project from the Built By Wendy Dresses sewing book.  I’ve had this excellent book for a few years now and have made a couple of projects from it.  I was curious about how the Hothouse Flowers dress would look in real life, but many Google searches turned up nothing.  Has no one ever attempted this dress??!?!!?

Hothouse Flowers

I realize an open-side dress is not for everyone, but let me tell ya – you’re missing out!  My little dude was born at the end of June last summer, just in time for a crazy heat wave.  I wasn’t able to fit my post-partum body into much, but this loose cotton dress was pretty forgiving.  And the open sides were fantastic air-conditioning, ha ha ha.


I made this dress in a size small (based on my pre-pregnancy measurements) and used a lightweight black cotton eyelet I bought at Mill End in Portland a few years ago during our summer hols.  I also used a black lace that I had in my fabric stash.


In addition to free air-conditioning, the wrap-style bodice and open sides provide easy access to the bewbs for nursing.  But if breastfeeding bebes is not your cup of tea, the open sides also provide a cheeky way to show off a pretty bralette.  Since pretty much the entire sewing world has been taken over by the Watson bra, this summer dress would be a great way to tastefully show off your handiwork.  And you’re welcome!


Happy Saturday everyone!




One thought on “Built By Wendy – Hothouse Flowers Dress

  1. Hi there, I just made this after seeing your gorgeous version on IG and I’m.not sure how I feel about my version. The sewing of lace on seemed to have stretch out the bias edges so much I almost need darts in it lol. I thought I was safe not stay stitching because sewing on the lace would do the stabilising, but I’ve learnt my lesson lol

    I too couldn’t believe there was no internet love for this dress. I love the idea of it though so I’ll likely do a Tim Gunn and “make it work”.


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