You are currently viewing DIY – Kimono-Style Maxi Dress – Vogue 9253

DIY – Kimono-Style Maxi Dress – Vogue 9253

Happy Wednesday!

I missed chatting with you all last week. The first week of August was a little off for me. I didn’t feel like sewing leading up to it because some tough dates were approaching. August 7th was the day my husband was diagnosed with brain cancer. August 8th, my birthday, was the day he had his first brain surgery. August 12, our wedding anniversary, was the day he had his second brain surgery. Leading into August, I was dreading the fact that I had to face what I thought would be very difficult firsts. I had a breakdown during that first week. During these breakdowns, I scream, cry real hard, and call out to God for help. It’s the most painful thing I’ve ever experienced in my life, but each time I go through it, I feel the presence of God, as if He’s holding me in His arms. I really don’t have adequate words to express what those moments are like but as painful as they are, I always come out of it feeling better. Someone explained it to me as a cleansing. That really makes sense to me, because after I’ve had a good cry, I feel rejuvenated. It’s the strangest thing, but I feel like I can carry on after I cry.

DIY - Kimono-Style Maxi Dress - Vogue 9253

The surprising thing for me is that I did very well, emotionally, during that second week of August. I celebrated my birthday with my sons and my oldest son’s girlfriend on the 7th. I sewed all day on the 8th and went out to dinner with my oldest son. I went to church on the 12th and sewed the rest of the day. We would have celebrated 23 years of marriage this year, and although I thought it would be a very sad day for me, it was a day of gratitude. I decided to thank God for giving me 22+ years with my husband. Instead of crying and being sad all day, I praised God for allowing me to experience a real love. Love is powerful, God is GOOD, and I’m grateful!!!




DIY - Kimono-Style Maxi Dress - Vogue 9253

DIY – Kimono-Style Maxi Dress – Vogue 9253

I made this Kimomo-Style Maxi Dress and wore it to church on our anniversary. This is the very popular Vogue 9253 that I’m sure you’ve seen because many women have sewn this look. I fell in love the first time I saw it. I was attracted to the fullness of the skirt and kimono sleeves. However, the deep v-neck is not for me. In fact, I’ve held off on sewing this dress because I wasn’t sure how I would raise the neckline.

I actually pulled this pattern out to take with me to the sewing retreat last month in Agusta, Georgia. I took patterns with me to cut so that I would have them ready to begin sewing when I returned home. I chose to use this beautiful Nicole Miller floral, silky print because I knew it would look fabulous. This fabric has been in my stash for over a year, so I don’t have a link to share with you. I purchased it from JoAnn Fabrics on the clearance rack for 60% off. I purchased about four yards of it because that’s the amount I buy when I think I want to make a maxi dress but don’t have a particular pattern in mind. JoAnn’s has other Silky Prints to choose from.

This was a very easy pattern to sew and it took me a couple of days to finish the dress. Before cutting my fabric, I went to to see if I could find any tips on raising the neckline. I didn’t find anything there, but I typed something into Google (don’t remember what) and a TUTORIAL by Andrea of Sew to Fit popped up. I watched her tutorial and followed the instructions, with a few exceptions. Instead of sewing a center seam up to the new stopping point, I lapped the right front over the left. My intention was to make my front a wrap bodice using Andrea’s tutorial. I extended the center front, but not nearly enough for a wrap bodice. What was I thinking? I had already sewn a double hem on the edges of the center fronts, and I was not about to remove that, so I just lapped fronts to my stopping point and topstitched. It has the appearance of a center seam. The main thing is that it solved the issue of the neckline being too low for my comfort. I like the outcome and if I were to sew it again I would probably try it with a real center seam. I omitted the tie belt by accident. I forgot to add it into the side seams at the proper time and, again, I was not about to remove any stitching. Can you tell I’m lazy when it comes to re-doing seams? Hahaha!

I wore the dress with a pair of flat sandals. Because the fabric is so lightweight, this makes for a perfect summer maxi dress. With a big floppy hat, I would be totally ready for a beautiful sunny day out. I hope you’re enjoying your summer sewing. I’m gonna try my best to get quite a few more summer pieces in before fall comes. I don’t have much time left so I’d better get back to the machine. Have a great week!

Thanks for stopping by!

Remember: When you live in your DESIGN, it is from there that God SHINES!



Anita Morris

Anita is the Author of STEP Into It, Overcoming Trials That Lead To Purpose. She is also an Online Sewing Instructor for beginner sewists. She is passionate about helping women to step into their purpose by walking in the calling on their lives. She hosts a popular YouTube channel where she helps women to become confident in their sewing skills.

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This Post Has 75 Comments

  1. CorvetteRN

    May God bless you and keep you safe. I lost my mother in law in a tragic accident on Aug 1, 2020, so now August won’t be the same for me either. But I pray she is safe and happy now, thats all I can do to ease my mind.

    You are the prettiest gal I have EVER seen, and I LOVE to see your outfits and your ways to accessorize them. Thank you for always brightening my day!

  2. Renia

    You are in my prayers. Anita, it takes time to get over such a terrible loss. Feeling this way, after only two years, is completely normal. I wish everyone could give you a gigantic hug to help with the pain you are feeling. We miss you.

  3. Sally Adams

    Dear Anita, I haven’t visited your site in a while. I’m so sad to hear your news about your husband’s illness. You don’t know me, but I think you are incredibly brave. I will hold you and your family close in my prayers and heart. Much love to you all. Sally in South Africa

    1. Anita Morris

      Thank you so much, Sally! I really appreciate that. Blessings to you, sister.

  4. Veronica

    Beautiful! And, the tutorial was great info!!!

  5. Sandra

    Hi Anita, Beautiful dress on a beautiful lady! God has blessed you with loving sons, and they will take good care of you. What a lovely wedding photo. You’ll always have the memories to cherish. Be strong in the Lord!

  6. Gisele

    Anita, this is absolutely beautiful. I purchased the pattern after seeing your picture. I am a beginner at sewing, so this “Easy” pattern (as stated on pattern cover) is already scary, not to mention trying to adjust the neckline. Oh my, I envision myself with a giant safety pin! Lol. Thanks, love your post.

  7. Cheryl Gray

    I love this post. God bless you Anita!

  8. Christina

    Ms. Anita, I too was leary about this pattern because of the neckline. You have given me reason to sew this one. And can we just talk about the fabric? I am absolutely in love with it!

  9. Vivian

    I’m plus size and would love to start a blog on sewing and altering plus size fashions. What advice do you have for me to get it started. Been seeing for46 years and still learning everyday. Thanks for your advice.

  10. Lori

    Anita, beautiful dress and thanks for sharing the changes to the neckline. I can’t imagine how hard this part of August was for you, prayers for you and your sons.

  11. Nalani

    Congratulations to you on another trip around the sun! Holding you and your family in the Light!

  12. ROBIN

    Beautiful testimony, beautiful kimono dress, beautiful woman…God is good indeed!

  13. Herley

    Your style is gorgeous, impressionable, fashionable and very much so creme de la creme. I am excited to finally start.

  14. TruDiva

    Gods grace will bring you through and the devil knows it. Everytime he tries to pull you into that pitty party God pulls you out. I love the outfit it’s beautiful.

  15. Geri Laubscher

    I love the dress. I need to make a couple of different ones for myself.
    Anita, you continue you be in my prayers. PG for the precious memories of your 22+ yr. marriage. May the Lord continue to life you up…I KNOW HE will.

  16. Leanna

    Lovely dress and fit! You look beautiful. I’m happy that your gratitude for a loving marriage brought you peace.

  17. Rosalind D

    Hi Anita, thanks for sharing your wedding pictures. Simply beautiful. Did you make your gown? I love this dress. I watch Andrea “sew to fit”. I am happy that you all are always willing to share your talents with us.

  18. Kelly Cook

    Beautiful maxi and wedding photo.

  19. Vicki

    Beautiful Anita in her wedding and maxi dress. Handsome groom and two sons whom possess their parents good looks. Be strong and know Yah cares and comfort you in your grieving. You were blessed to have found that real love. I pray your memories are like breathing in of fresh flowers. Fragrant and Pungent.

  20. Gretchen

    You did that!! It’s simple beautiful.

  21. Tracy Griffin

    Anita, you know I just adore you, right? Beautiful, inside and out.

    Love you my sister.

    1. Anita Morris

      Ooohhh, thank you, Tracy! I love you too, sister!

  22. Krystal Grant

    Your dress is incredibly beautiful. Great job! I’m glad you had an enjoyable birthday. Hugs to you.

  23. Linda Hanna

    Anita – you are beautiful!

  24. Tasha

    “I praised God for allowing me to experience a real love”

    You don’t know how much that warmed my heart and gave me hope.

    Your dress is gorgeous. Your maxi game is always so on point! I still love the one you wore for your birthday! I’m happy to hear the Lord is continuing to be faithful to His promises. Bless you, Anita.

  25. Linda L

    First let me say I am so sorry about the loss of your husband and admire the strength you have through your love of God to get through those anniversary times. You always look so lovely and crying is cleansing.

    Now I love your dress! The fabric and fit are perfect for this. I do like the raised neckline as it makes this so much more classy. You always look elegant in what you make, you definitely know what styles and colors work best for you!

  26. Kay

    It is a beautiful dress.

  27. Julie Ann Grzebien

    I am so sorry it has been a rough time for you. Dealing with the loss of my parents, I had an epiphany one day. I think of people who have said they didn’t get along very well with the person, or not that close. I cry and hurt because I had such a close relationship. It seems to make the pain a bit more easy.

    Thanks for posting your review of this gorgeous dress!! The video link will be helpful. I want to do the same thing. You look fantastic!

    Praying foryou!!

    1. Anita Morris

      Hi Julie! Yes, someone shared that same thing with me about my pain being so intense because of the love we shared with each other. I get it. I’d rather have this pain along with good memories, than have bad memories. Thanks for sharing.

  28. Cora Mae Lengeman

    Love that you raised the neckline. I also have avoided this pattern because of the very low V-neck! I will be stopping over at the site for Andrea of Sew to Fit to check out her tutorial.
    I also have a a Quik Sew T-Shirt with a too low V-neck that I am just sick that I made it up and then found that the V neck was SO low. I had used an expensive (for me) knit that I bought at a fabric store here in Michigan called Habermans, great quality, a bit pricey but worth it for the quality of fabrics when you really need to organic kit cotton. I hope the tutorial will help me fix that shirt – I already took out the serging. . .

    Love everything you show on Facebook! You are an inspiration for me! Thanks so much for sharing your talent!

    1. Anita Morris

      Hi Cora! I sure hope the tutorial helps you with your t-shirt. We all know too well how it feels to mess up a good piece of fabric.

  29. Aneesah

    Hi Anita,

    The dress is beautiful and so are you. May GOD continue to bless you with comfort, ease and strength to push through those moments. Ameen!

  30. Thelma

    Beautiful dress and testimony. I have delayed from making this dress also due to the low cut so thanks for the link. Keep sewing, keep the faith, and keep smiling?

  31. Mrs. Chi

    Anita, I LOVE how your sons are surrounding you in that picture! Their positions around you inherently look as if they are saying “Mom, we feel what you are going through and we got you”. That is what it looked like to me as soon as I saw the picture. It looks like CEMO left you in good hands with your two strong men. I pray you feel the love of your husband, your sons, and our eternal and ever present Lord, Jesus Christ, surrounding you at all times.

    1. Anita Morris

      Hi Mrs. Chi! I love that picture with my sons too. Thanks for your pryers.

  32. Lynette

    Hi my friend – how are you? That is a beautiful dress….perfect for the hot summers here in NY. Everyone seems to always find great sales at Joann’s….maybe I don’t sew enough….in any event, you look great

  33. Mariela Elmore

    Dear Anita, I sympathize with you. The lost of a love one is painful, may God strengthen you every day and when you need to cry and shout, do exactly that. God bless!

  34. Cynthia Willis

    Beautiful, inside and out!

  35. Tanya B

    I love your courage and you and your dress are beautiful. I am so happy you got through “your firsts”. May God continue to give you strength. My husband and I were married 23 years June 30th and I found out last Tuesday that he has been cheating on me for the past 5 months and being very disrespectful. I pray that God gives me the strength to continue and get stronger. It’s no comparison to your loss but it’s still a huge loss to me and my family. Continued prayers for you and your family

    1. Cynthia

      Praying for you! May God’s infinite grace cover you and sustain you through this difficult time. He’s got you!

  36. Florence

    Oh my goodness, Ms. Anita.! You look like a little girl in your wedding photo! Still beautiful as ever. Continue to stand and cleanse as you see fit. God’s got you and you have two of his angels looking after you And I’m with you on undoing seams? Happy belated birthday

  37. Peggy

    Hi Anita. I have a song I want you to listen to. It’s on youtube and here’s the link:, it’s very encouraging. Love the dress and the fabric. I looked at the pattern and yeah I see what you mean by the neckline. Would love to attempt to make it but I’m not sure if I can pull off raising the neckline, for I’m still in the beginning stage of sewing. Thanks so much for sharing.

    1. Anita Morris

      Jesus! Jesus! Jesus! Oooohhh, Peggy!!! Thank you so much for sharing this beautiful song of praise. I’m not alone! I feel closest to God when I listen to worship music. You have no idea how much you blessed me tonight. I’ve added this to my playlist. Blessings to you, sister.

  38. Shirley Douglas

    I’m so proud of you and your great strength, continued prayers for you and your family, and love that dress!

  39. LaTanya Coleman Curtis

    Well I don’t feel bad now that sometimes I just don’t feel like using the old seam ripper, who is always so dedicated to me. ( really laughing out loud). I’m so proud of you. You remind me of a song that plays in my head. Keep your head to the sky! No matter the trial nor the tribulation, keep your head to the sky. I too am in a sewing slump, but it’s ok. I do crafts to fill in the gap. On one of your earlier tutorials you talked about the Simplex expanding sewing gauge. Yesterday, the mail lady delivered mines. ( doing the snoopy dance) I’m so excited. I really needed you to talk about this, when you did because I forgot to purchase it. But I have mines now ( grabbing my coffee, exhausted cause the snoopy dance was a bit much at 104 degrees). Wok so again I need to thank you. Sometimes when sewing I assume that everyone sews a dress in one day and are wearing it the next. To hear you say it took a couple of days, made me feel ok. Most of us have all these gadgets to sew things real fast( sewing machine, serger, coverstitch blah blah blah) and I get so overwhelmed because after cutting things out, and making sure this is perfect and that fits properly, it can’t be done in a few hours. This would totally make me so discouraged to sew. I read some blogs and they brag about making things in a couple of hours and it takes me two or three days to complete and I just throw it into the I’m gonna finish it another day box. But it’s kinda funny when I come back to the I’m gonna do it another day box, I don’t even like it anymore so it never gets finished ROFL. Ok so I’m gonna close now, thank you for your love for sewing, thank you for your patience and motivation to others, thank you for allowing GOD to dictate your journey and you following his direction. Keep your head to the sky!

    1. Anita Morris

      OMGosh! Cecil used to love that song!!! Glad you got your sewing gauge. I just used mine today for buttonhole placement on a sleeve cuff. Love that tool.***Oh goodness, I’m a slow sewer. I’m amazed by the sew sisters who can crank out garments almost daily or every other day. I just can’t and I really don’t have a problem with it. I just take my time and focus on putting out a quality garment for myself. I take more pride in that than being able to quickly crank out numerous garments. Thanks, LaTanya! Keeping my head to the sky.

  40. Carrie Cunningham

    Your posts and faith are always inspiring!
    And your dress is stunning!

  41. KS Sews

    You are such a testament to the power of positive thinking/energy and focusing on what’s good. I need to do more of that.

    Happy Birthday and Anniversary!!

    And that dress ROCKS! The fabric is beautiful.

  42. Stephanie

    Happy Belated Birthday and I am sorry for your loss. I love that you said you are celebrating 22 years of love that you got to have with your husband…so beautiful.

  43. Cynthia

    You made Me cry. Your sons are gorgeous and so are you! Thanks!

  44. Carolyn

    It’s a gorgeous dress and the firsts are the hardest so I’m glad you made it through. Not saying it will get easier but know that God will give you the strength each and every time to make it through!

    1. Anita Morris

      Thank you so much, Carolyn! He’s upholding me every step of the way.

  45. Elaine

    Happy birthday dear, you are such an inspiration, both with your craft and your beautiful heart.

  46. Patti

    Thank you for being so transparent in sharing your grief. I’m sure it is extremely helpful to others in similar situations and those situations we all eventually find ourselves in. The Lord has blessed you greatly!

  47. Caroll


    I just adore that dress! It’s so beautiful. Can’t wait to see the other projects you have in store for us.?You really touch my heart through your transparency! You’re blessed to see and experience the healing from Father (God)!?

  48. Dara

    YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL AS USUAL ANITA!You help SO Many people with your posts! THANK YOU!

  49. Gwendolyn Styles

    Happy belated birthday! Your dress is beautiful just like you! God is always with you and your family.

  50. Queenesther Jones

    Anita! Another great job! You look incredible. You look exactly the same as you do in your wedding picture. How do you do it?
    Your openness about what you have been doing through is an inspiration to all of us. You are helping others to know that if you truly open your heart to God, He will fill it with strength, hope and joy. Keep trusting in Him and keep looking FABULOUS my sister! ?

  51. Carmen

    .Anita thank you for sharing your heart and beautiful pictures with us. I got teary when I read your post of firsts. God is with you and has never left your side. Lean on his promises and his strength will carry you.

    The dress is absolutely gorgeous. I have admired that pattern for some time. Beautiful job.

  52. Suzy

    I love your dress! If you are so inclined I’d love a photo tutorial on how you raised the neckline. I also had a problem with the low neckline on the pattern, and your dress is just beautiful.

  53. Janean

    Oh Anita it is a horrible feeling I have experienced the same. You are right it is healing and a huge release. Strength will come and the Lord will strengthen you as is his promise in Psalm 23. He fills us back up and leads us to a place of rest and peace. We often associate this passage with funerals but it is for living as well. The cleansing occurs because the tears are salt water. Like going to the ocean and you feel relaxed afterwards. One evening treat yourself to a warm bath and put some epsom salt, or sea salt in the water with a few drops of lavendar oil, dim the lights, and light a candle. You will feel a cleansing from this as well. You can pray, meditate, or just relax and feel the warmth. So incredibly healing. God is so awesome because he never leaves nor forsakes us. I have learned so much from you not only from sewing but a relationship with God as well. I love you my sister very much!

    1. Anita Morris

      OMGoodness, Janean! Thank you so much! I’m going to take your advice and have that warm bath one evening soon. That sounds so calming.

  54. Lawana Powell

    You look amazing as always Anita, I haven’t been on social media much but i do check my emails and I saw your post. So nice to see you…miss you to pieces!

  55. Joen E Venitsky

    My heart is with you, I lost my husband 7 years ago he was 51. My journey has had many ups and downs and I still have a good cry every once in a while, I call them my pitty parties, and yes it is cleansing then I pick myself up and carry on. Sewing certain has been my therapy through it all. I love your maxi dress, I have a casual wedding in October that I think that would be perfect for…thanks for the inspiration.

    1. Anita Morris

      Hi Joen! I’m so sorry to hear about your husband. You absolutely understand me then. Yes, sewing is my therapy too, hands down. I love my machines so much now. Have fun sewing your dress for the wedding.

  56. Julia

    Beautiful, Happy Birthday.

  57. Angie

    This is absolutely beautiful. Happy Belated Birthday as well

    1. Shirley Douglas

      Praying for you and your continued strength, you are an inspiration and I adore that dress!