Velvet Appleton Dress

Velvet Appleton

There have been a bunch of gorgeous velvet Appleton wrap dresses in the last year, like Jodi’s and Mary Alice’s versions. I wanted in on the fun, so I sewed one for myself!

In fact, this was meant to be my holiday dress… but then I ended up going with something more casual on the day. I did have a delightfully girly moment of having my sister and our friend both try it on during family Christmas, and now we know it fits us all!

Velvet Appleton

To be honest, I’m torn about this dress. I made it two months ago and haven’t worn it yet! Here’s why:

  • CON: The fabric was quite stable, which resulted in a neckband that doesn’t hug the body as nicely as my jersey versions.
  • PRO: I can always wear a camisole underneath!

Velvet Appleton

  • CON: The print ends up making it feel less va-va-voom than my inspiration dresses, but because it’s a fitted velvet dress, it feels a bit over the top for a work day!
  • PRO: Maybe the #CashmeretteChallenge will make me find a way to wear it, as I run out of other options?

Velvet Appleton

I’m game for any styling ideas you have – how do I dress it down for everyday wear? Or should I just enjoy it as an addition to my “fancy knit dress” collection for next holiday season?Β 


54 thoughts on “Velvet Appleton Dress

    1. You are probably right – the “fanciness” is all in my brain! I have other velvet things I wear to work, but no velvet that also highlights my bootie! πŸ˜‰

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Gillian, I do hope you find a way to wear that dress, you look stunning in it. The fabric doesn’t look inappropriate for work, but a cami would let you feel less inhibited and self conscious. I think so, anyway.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I”m running out of Cashmerette to wear this month, so I”m definitely going to give this dress a shot at work, with the help of a great big cami or slip!

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  2. First, this silhouette is dynamite on you! Second, while I get the annoyance of a collar band that doesn’t hug, I think you should totally rock this to work. Why not? In my experience the Appleton is pretty comfy so I would totally rock some velvet at the schools like the queen you are!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I do always really admire the one teacher consultant who wears a suit every day – he’s totally angling for an admin job, but he looks great in the meantime! πŸ˜‰

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    1. I second this suggestion – I think a fitted, not-too-long cardigan would look good and might help make the fabric seem less OTT for everyday wear (in the photos it looks not too OTT but I could imagine real life is different). I also love the dress, it is gorgeous on you!

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Thick tights and boots will perhaps make it feel less dressy, but it’s so pretty, why worry? And actually because the velvet is patterned, it somehow loses some of its Christmassy vibe. So pretty 😊.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for the good advice! I dont’ know why my brain tells me that dressy is a bad thing, when it’s just looking good! πŸ˜‰

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  4. Put a cami on underneath so you don’t feel self-conscious all day, and then wear that baby to the office. It isn’t too fancy for work. A few people will give a compliment, and that always feels good. Life is too short. If you feel great in the dress,wear it. ❀

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  5. I agree with the other comments – wear it to work with a cami and a cardigan! Worst case, small children will want to pet you because you’re so velvety. πŸ™‚

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  6. I love it and I feel like an occasion will come up eventually! I have one or two dresses like this in my wardrobe that don’t really feel like they have a home and occasionally stress me out because I’m not wearing them, but then suddenly a winter wedding or something comes up and they are perfect. Plus, since you are in Canada, I bet the velvet season is pretty long πŸ˜‰

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  7. Your dress is beautiful and looks work appropriate to me, unless your work is a jeans and t-shirt kind of place. I find that synthetic velvet is not particularly warm, even though it looks warm, so velvet is a year round fabric for me. I will confess that about 20 years ago, I lucked into an after Christmas department store sale where I got 8 or 10 velvet dresses, skirts, pants and shirts for roughly $15 apiece. I wore those puppies to work year round, and the last piece just got retired last year, only because it was threadbare. Yep, I wore them out. I loved them – looked nice without effort, not too warm or cold, super comfortable, wash and wear (no special care required). Those clothes were my secret pajamas. I think you should just wear the dress with confidence – it looks great on you. “Everyday wear” is a matter of opinion, I think. Some people wear a suit everyday. For myself, if I had that lovely dress, it would be worn regularly and I would have to “dress it up” to wear it to a party. So really, it is just a matter of perspective.

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    1. What a fantastic comment, Lynda! You are totally right, I should wear it and feel great. Sometimes I lapse back to my highschool fears from 20 years ago about wanting to fit in, and I need a reminder that now I actually admire people who want to stand out!

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  8. Love that dress. It looks gorgeous on you (but you don’t half look freezing in that top photo). Cami underneath and a cardi over the top, or one of those lovely short jersey blazers?? I think that it looks too good to “keep for good”. I bet that it is lovely and warm as well. As they say back home “get it worn”, you look great! πŸ™‚ Xx

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    1. I”m going to be so happy when winter photo season is over! Wait til you see the sleeveless dress coming up in a week or two! πŸ˜› You know, I don’t have a knit blazer, but now that you mention it… I clearly should!!!

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  9. Wear your dress to work with a camisole and a slip. This will keep the kids from looking to see what they can see, I would also wear a sweater over it. Don’t make something and then not wear it, or save it for a special occasion, which may not occur until the dress is out of style.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. My vote is to wear it to work- I wore my velvet Blackwood cardigan today, and I will warn you to be prepared to be ‘petted’ – the elementary students love it!!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I would join the chorus of wear to work, but I think it really isn’t practical for your profession. I do think it makes a good date night dress or special occasion dress. Worth keeping for those events when you need something nicer than your typical wardrobe. Don’t have the right occasion, make one! Fancy dinner at home with the hubby totally counts.

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    1. “Dear husband,
      Please make me a nice meal, because I have a pretty dress to wear!”

      Actually, let’s be honest, that would work! πŸ˜‰ He is a clever man!

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  12. I love, it and would merrily wear it to work on my smart days! For dressing down – could you put a long-sleeved (close-fitting) T-shirt underneath? Then with some tights and tougher boots it would give off a more everyday vibe. I’m even wondering about a leather jacket..?!

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  13. It doesn’t look too fancy! But then, the velvet texture doesn’t come through too well on my Kindle screen. Would you maybe feel more comfortable with it if you refashioned it some? Like a tunic top with colorful jeans or leggings? I hope you share what you decide to do. I’d love to add some velvet to my wardrobe, along with some other more luxe fabrics that have been in my stash for awhile, but it really does feel impractical for my mostly casual life!

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    1. I have a few other velvet things that I do wear regularly to work, like a boxy tee and a swingy dress. I think it’s just that this one is formfitting which makes it feel a bit over the top!

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  14. Rock it with a denim jacket! Instantly more casual, but still cool for school! Also, a nice mid blue denim jacket will make it feel more like your day time colors, and less like schmancy dinner date colors. Then later that day, I bet your husband would find you damn sexy in that dress paired with some candle light!

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    1. I love having people who know my style well! I think you are spot on about the colours being part of why I feel like it is dressy. I need something brighter mixed in!

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  15. Gillian, this is a beautiful dress. Where did you get the printed velvet? I don’t think it’s over the top at all! There is no such thing as “dressing down” velvet. Just wear it and enjoy. I always feel glorious wearing velvet. The velvet season in Arizona is a short one. As far as the neckband goes, Andrea’s suggestion above is a good solution. I just found that same website this week! It’s one of those moments where you think, “Why didn’t I think of that?”

    Liked by 1 person

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