With holiday parties on the horizon, I'd highly recommend the April Rhodes Date Night dress if you need something beautiful and quick! Any fabric with movement and drape would be ideal, and it works up so fast with just four pieces.
Pattern: Date Night Dress by April Rhodes
Fabric: Helios Indigo, 2.75 yards
Size Made: L
Modifications: turned neck edge under, no bias tape or facing
When I was getting ready to sew up a little special occasion dress, the sleeves on the Date Night dress were definitely what made it the winning pattern for me. I was already in love with the Pegasus print on Anna Maria Horner's Helios Indigo rayon and the wing sleeves are a great style match. Plus, the rayon fabric is so swingy and dreamy! The little box pleat in the back adds just enough structure by raising the neck line while leaving the fabric free to move.
The dress is very open on the sides beneath the wing sleeves. Definitely make the slip pattern included or plan on wearing a thrifted slip as I did (it was a last-minute sew) for side coverage. I used a rolled hem foot which made finishing the sleeve really simple.
I always get more fabric than I think I need when it comes to rayon, just in case of shrinkage. Luckily, this high quality rayon challis from Free Spirit shrunk no more than normal cotton. I had a whole 10" strip left over at the bottom to make a cowl for a friend!
This amazing dress is just so swingy and swishy and magical! I can see myself making many more of these - plus, I think I'll try the slip pattern soon!