This is the time of year for end-of-season sales at the fabric store, which means that if you find pattern on sale, too, you can make a dress for $10. Including the zipper. That’s what I did with this one, made from the Venice fabric. I wore it to the yarn store at lunch yesterday, which was full of knitting ladies, and one of them said, “That dress looks just like Audrey Hepburn.” (I think she meant the dress looked like something Audrey would wear. I took it as a compliment.)

The internet is also a good source for cheap fabric, and if you don’t mind ordering from a place called “Fashion Fabrics Club,” you can get heavy Italian linen in a purple plaid for about $15: Notice the neckline? I was really thrifty and used the same pattern as the Venice dress and just changed the skirt. And notice the pleats under the waistline? Gut pleats. Brilliant. I may never wear pants again.

The one disadvantage to dresses is that 99% of them close in the back. And while I’ve gotten good at zipping myself up, the hook and eye at the top of the zipper–that hits right at the middle of my back on this pattern–had me questioning my decision to live alone this morning. But one must put up with something, I suppose.