Seamwork Kenedy Dress by Helen's Closet

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Kenedy Mermaid Dress

I have a serious addiction to sack dresses.  This never used to be the case for me, but I can’t seem to make any other silhouette that I prefer more than a plain old sack.  Sure, the fit and flare is a fantastic style, and body-con is undeniably flattering, but I can’t keep away from the sack….ok, that came out weird.  Lucky for me, the sack is in!  I couldn’t be happier these days with this trend being so prevalent, I can get away with wearing tights, flats, and a sack literally anywhere.  Of course, for very special occasions, one needs an extra fancy sack!  Without further ado, I present to you, the magical mermaid Kenedy dress!

Seamwork Kenedy Dress by Helen's ClosetSeamwork Kenedy Dress by Helen's Closet

This fancy sack is a Seamwork Kenedy dress.  I fell hard for this pattern and immediately downloaded and printed it as soon as it came out.  The Kenedy is a loose a-line silhouette with delicate cap sleeves and a tie-back detail.

Seamwork Kenedy Dress by Helen's Closet
Seamwork Kenedy Dress by Helen's Closet

As you may have noticed, the fabric really steals the show here.  I loved the shiny look of the Seamwork sample, so I decided to use this iridescent fabric that I had in my stash from an Our Social Fabric sale. It is some kind of poly-blend, it has some stretch and a textured surface.  The colours make me think of the ocean shore here on the west coast, and the texture is almost like scales, hence the mermaid nickname.  It is very lightweight and drapes beautifully, but it does tend to cling – can’t win ‘em all. I think this fabric was donated to OSF because it has some weird markings on it, hardly noticeable due to it’s many colours and captivating print.

Seamwork Kenedy Dress by Helen's Closet
The Kennedy is fun to sew, but I will say that with this slippery fabric, the bias binding was very tricky!  You can see that  I got some puckering on the back V-shape, but overall I am quite pleased with it.  I made my own bias out of the fabric, so it all matches perfectly.  The other tricky part of this dress is the cap sleeve hem and sewing in such small little sleeves!  I didn’t do a rolled hem on this because the fabric wouldn’t have it, so I just turned and pressed the edge under twice before sewing.  If I had chosen a more stable fabric, this dress would have been easier, but it was as slippery as it looks!  

Seamwork Kenedy Dress by Helen's Closet
Seamwork Kenedy Dress by Helen's ClosetSeamwork Kenedy Dress by Helen's Closet
Seamwork Kenedy Dress by Helen's Closet

I have worn this dress several times now, out at night to dinners and shows.  I like how fancy it is, without being stuffy or overworked. People have told me it looks like a galaxy or the ocean, and it definitely turns heads!

Do you like sack dresses?  Have you considered making the Kennedy?

About the author


Helen Wilkinson is the designer and founder of Helen's Closet Patterns. She also co-hosts the Love to Sew Podcast! Helen is obsessed with all things sewing and strives to share her passion and knowledge with the sewing community.

17 Comments on “Kenedy Mermaid Dress”

  1. I think it looks like an eagle view’s of the earth with the colors of the oceans and lands etc etc … Very mesmerizing fabric …

  2. Cute dress! I love the fabric. I’ve been thinking of making the Kenedy- it’s so cute! The back v-neck and tie are a nice touch.

  3. I’m not a big fan of shiny fabrics, but this one is really eye-catching thanks to its print and colour and the fit of the dress is spot on. Great work. I also fell immediately for this pattern and it’s definitely on my summer list!

    1. Thanks! I also tend to stay away from shiny fabrics, they only really look good at night or on special occasions. This one is certainly special!

  4. I am on the same page with you and sack dresses! Over the last few months I went completely crazy over them and that’s all I want to wear. I LOVE your Kennedy dress! I also printed it off as soon as it came out and it has been sitting waiting for it’s turn. Your fabric is amazing and it certainly looks like the struggle was worth it. The dress is gorgeous on you!

  5. That fabric is amazing!! And how on earth would you ever notice “weird markings”. I certainly wouldn’t have. This looks beautiful on you Helen!

  6. I’m making my own Kenedy out of OSF fabric too! A sleeveless version in a denim tie-dye fabric. It seems like a great pattern for showing off cute strappy bras, too.

  7. Pingback: Seamwork Kenedy Refashion – Helen's Closet

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