My current favourite multipurpose dress is the shorter version of McCalls 6559.
I've made this dress three times now, once as the maxi and twice as the shorter length. While I love the maxi, I feel too warm when I wear it in the summer. I honestly also feel rather disproportionate with the swath of fabric emphasizing my long legs and shorter upper body (I'm 5'9" with a 35" inseam).
The shorter versions, though, have been worn a few times a week. I'm also gravitating towards them when I come home from work and need to get into something comfortable. I made a black one a few years back out of a cotton/rayon/lycra jersey. My most recent make is out of a chartreuse green microfibre jersey.
This is great fabric. It feels so dressy and sexy to wear, it skims the curves and just hangs so nicely. I had some trouble with the photographing of this dress, as you can see - the photographs came out in all sorts of different colours. The truest colour is the photograph of the back view on the right.
I finished the neck and armholes with strips of self-fabric cut on the cross-grain. I cut the strips 2" wide and just shorter than the length of the opening. I joined them in a circle, then folded them in half, wrong sides together and stitched them to the right side of the openings. A light press with the iron finishes them off. I think it is just a more professional finish than the turn-and-stitch hems often recommended in the pattern.
I also made the longer cardigan that is included with the pattern out of the same fabric. I opted not to hem it at all because the topstitching of this fabric was giving me FITS. It was easy enough to do, I used a rotary cutter to cut it out and make the seam edge very even and clean. It made the cardigan a super-quick project.
I wore it a lot on my recent vacation, including a dinner at the Zofin Palace in Prague!
I'm sure I'll be making more of these this summer - in fact, I already have some treasured souvenir fabric from my vacation last summer pulled for this!