Papercut Patterns Adrift Dress

Papercut Patterns Adrift Dress pattern review

The Adrift dress is part of Papercut Pattern’s nautically inspired ‘Ahoy!’ collection. It features a wrap skirt with gentle ruffles at the sleeves and hem .... after copious watching of the Royal Wedding last month I'm fairly certain that ruffles are a trend that is here to stay. I love the styling of Papercut Patterns and enjoy wearing this dress because it’s so comfortable yet still looks elegant.


The fabric I used was a crepe from Sew Over It - I fell in love with the print and bright blue colour. It isn't available on their site anymore, but I would actually recommend looking for a more breathable material than the one I used, like a rayon. I tend to want to wear this dress on warm summer days, and find that it can be a little stifling at times. That said, it's still a great dress to pack in a suitcase for holidays because it doesn't crease and you can whip it out, ready to wear. I also think the skirt only option would look great in a heavier weight fabric for work - like wool suiting or linen.

Papercut Patterns Adrift Dress

Pattern and Instructions

Printed Papercut Patterns are a beautiful treat; they are printed onto recycled materials so get ready for a lot of brown paper and folding (no glue or staples used here). The instructions are designed to be self assembled; you cut and stick a large page into a long folding book. Pattern pieces are as normal and everything is stored in a sturdy card envelope. I'm not sure how I feel about this instruction book, but the directions themselves are easy to follow with clear diagrams and additional tips to help you achieve a good finish.

Papercut Patterns Adrift Dress pattern review

This dress is a good option for beginners because there are no zips or buttons needed and a limited number of pattern pieces required. The construction of the bodice is very simple, requiring only bust darts and a faced neckline. I was happily surprised to find that adding the ruffles is also a lot easier than it looks! They don’t need any gathering, just careful following of the instructions. The sleeves are sewn in using the flat insertion method, which is easy to master and creates an impressive result with the ruffles.


I didn’t follow the instructions to attach and secure the facings because I hate topstitching them! Instead, I stitched the facings to the front and back bodice before the shoulder seams were joined. Then, when sewing the front to the back, I opened out the neckline and stitched the shoulder and facings in one long line. All that’s needed then is a couple of hand stitches to anchor the facing to the shoulder seam. There aren’t too many issues in getting a good fit, given the loose-fitting nature of the dress and gathering at the waist. To create a more tailored look I inserted elastic instead of a loose cord which meant I could then wear a separate belt over the top instead. This is a brilliant pattern for showing off prints and having a separate belt helps to create a flattering silhouette.

Papercut Patterns Adrift Dress pattern review

Look familiar? Elements of this article appeared in Sew Now magazine in 2017, who arranged for the provision of the pattern and fabric. I get to play with a higher word count here though!

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Welcome to Sewing and Other Stories; my journeys with sewing and knitting; pattern reviews, tips and guides for beginners. I'm also the designer behind West Beach Knits knitting patterns and I host a Knitting and Sewing channel on YouTube where you can see all of this in person. Come have a look!

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