TALLULAH TEA DRESS with a round neck, gathered empire bust line, long sleeves with elasticated cuffs, centre back zip and frill in two lengths making it either midi or maxi lengths.

This slimline dress is not only elegant but a comfortable fit and very on trend, designed to be worn everyday or on special occasions.

Tallulah dress is simple to make with extra help on the blog when inserting the zip and also a FREE add-on template to make a V-neck option. Just go to menu and click on the TALLULAH HACK page below the Tallulah page. Enter the password which you will find written on the pattern inside back page. On the Tallulah hack page you will find the downloadable pattern which you can print off at home or copy shop on to four A4 pages. Stick these together to make the new Front and Front V-neck facing template. Simple and easy! On the Tallulah Hack page you will also find step by step instructions about how to make a V-neck version.


Here is information about sizing, finished garment details and fabric requirements.

This blogpost shows a condensed version of the instructions which go into more detail in the instruction booklet.


I advise making a toile or sample garment of this dress in cheap fabric (or an old sheet) beforehand to check the fit . You may require some adjustments to the pattern.

The most common adjustment with an empire line pattern is at the bust line, so I have added some tips at the bottom of this page to help you get the right fit with your Tallulah pattern.

Scroll down to the end of this blogpost to see details.



Adjusting a bust in an empire line pattern is slightly different to a normal pattern with a dart. There are two issues to consider: Bodice length and Bust size.


So you have made a toile or sample garment and you are finding that the bustline is coming a bit high. It is a common fact that, as we age, our bustline is lower than when we were younger. Having said that, some people may have inherited a longer or shorter bodice than the norm (whatever that maybe!). So for whatever reason you may need to lower (or raise) the bodice bustline. This is how we do it…..


Adjust the Bodice Back in the same way as the Front. Trim along the horizontal lengthen lines. Separate the two pieces to the same measurement as the Bodice Front. Place paper underneath. Stick in position.

You may need to adjust at the outer side edge to align the two pieces. NB ensure that the centre back edges and grainlines are aligned.


One last thing worth pointing out when lengthening/shortening the bodice is that the overall dress length will also be shorter/longer. To compensate you may choose to shorten the Skirt Front and Back accordingly, using the lengthen lines on the pattern template. To do this, use the same method as with the Bodice Front and Back.


Bodice front needs more room to accommodate a larger cup size? or maybe you want to make the bust smaller?

Fear not ….its so easy to adjust.

Draw two lines from the notches at the lower curved edge, to the armhole edge, approx a quarter of the way up.

Then draw a line centrally between the two lines just drawn. Cut along this centre line, but stop just before (5mm) from the armhole edge. This allows you to splay open or together. Obviously splaying apart the two lines makes the bust bigger and overlapping makes it smaller.

The pattern is designed for a bust cup size B, so if you need to enlarge to a size C then add 1cm between the two lines. Then each size requires a further 1cm. To reduce the bust to A cup- reduce by -1cm.

A= -1cm

B= 0cm

C= +1cm

D= +2cm

DD= +3cm…..

When you have made the correct adjustment, place a piece of paper behind the pattern and tape it down.

Continue as normal with the pattern. You will have a little extra fabric between the notches to gather up for an enlarged bust and a little less to gather up for a decreased bust size. Whichever way, the notches still match up with the Skirt Front and the armhole measurement remains the same. Happy days.

All images are subject to copyright. Please ask prior permission to use them. Thank you.

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