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Etage Dress Review from Hand-Me-Downs!

Etage dress review

Etage Dress Review

We had the honor of testing the Etage Top and Dress for Terri of Sew Straight and Gather.  And entirely by accident, we had to use hand-me-downs for the fabric, thus qualifying for the week 2 theme over at Project Run & Play: “The Hand-Me-Down Makeover.”  Here’s the totally by accident part…the Etage top and dress uses knit fabric, and in our closest, very small town, there is one source of knit fabric; Walmart.  Now combine a short time table to test the Etage, a WIDE selection of 3 (THREE??!!!!) knit fabrics at aforementioned fabric mecca (dripping with sarcasm here!) and only 5/8 yard remaining of the only one that was close to being suitable.  Those components meant I walked over to the women’s section and bought another dress from the clearance section, just like the one I’d bought a week earlier for myself.

Then I went home and dug through my closet and came up with three more knit fabric items:

The dress I’d bought earlier (I was wearing it as a skirt…a byproduct of being 6′ tall!)

A grey skirt.

And a blue dress I’d already refashioned once.   I had enough knit fabric from these items to make a top for Aria, a dress for Annie, and a scrap of fabric leftover for David’s turtleneck.  Not the failure it first appeared to be!

Etage Dress seated

Terri is going to release the Etage pattern for purchase very soon, and this is one I think you are going to want to add to your collection.

Etage dress review

Anne is so in love with her dress.  She wasn’t too enthused with the picture on the pattern, or the fabric, but once she slipped the dress on, she was sold!

Etage Dress review

She loves to twirl, and this dress is perfect for that floaty, twirly, perfection.  The asymmetrical layers create not only a fun look, but twirling pleasure.

Etage dress review

This dress is entirely lined, which makes it not only comfortable and warm, but modest too.  You could also use some of those dreamy, lightweight, semi-transparent knits on the market too.

Aria didn’t really love the shape of the overall finished Etage top I made her, but because it is soooo comfortable, she plans to wear it to sleep in!

And David is so very happy that he got included in another sewing project and photo shoot.

This time we went to a park again.  This particular park is so very large and fun that what inevitably happens is the kids split and getting a photo of them together is impossible.  But the separate photos Allegra got are awesome as usual.

I noticed a trend when sewing this time; boys ask for nouns and girls make their requests in the form of adjectives (pink dress, twirly skirt, long skirt!).

That’s why David has gotten a boat shirt, a zebra shirt, a fox shirt and this elephant shirt.

This elephant shirt fulfills the challenge we got from Elsie Marley.  #creativeassignmenttwofer  Our two words were Stripes + Elephant.


We’re pretty happy with our creative result.  We used an old stained turtle neck of Annie’s from last winter with hot cocoa stains on the front!  Perfect for a reverse appliqué elephant!

Etage dress contrast layer

The only thing not upcycled from this project is the second contrasting layer of Annie’s dress.  That’s the gorgeous knit fabric I got from FabricWorm.  Remember, I bought 1/2 yard of each of the 4 colors.  I used the first one here.  If you come back tomorrow, you’ll see another one!  Three down, one to go, and loving every inch of them!

Etage dress review

If you’re wondering, like I was, what Etage means, Terri enlightened me: it’s French for tiers.  Appropriate, eh?

The back of the Etage dress is just as fun as the front:

back of Etage Dress

So what could have been a colossal fail turned out into 3 garments that will be worn and worn and worn!

Etage Dress Review

Now we have 2 assignment for you:

Go buy an Etage top and dress pattern for your little twirler!

Go check out all the fun things made from hand-me-downs over at Project Run & Play.

Have a twirly, happy, fun day!

Published by skirtfixation

Audrey, a mom of 9, sews and blogs at Skirt Fixation, your home for everything skirt related! There's lots of other sewing goodness too...after all can't leave the boys out of sewing adventures! She also designs and sells pattern through Project Run & Play.

10 thoughts on “Etage Dress Review from Hand-Me-Downs!

  1. Love the dresses, your girls look like they are happy with all the twirly opportunities! And that elephant shirt is adorable. Etage also means “stories” (like stories/levels in a house), that’s how I read it first. I grew up bilingual in France. Love the french name! 🙂


  2. Cute striped elephant!!! As easy as the project sounded, it was rather difficult to execute. That shirt is adorable. I haven’t seen any others yet, but I am on the look out! I just know of some people who also signed up 🙂


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