Category Archives: butterick

Finished: Butterick 5606 Dress

I sewed a dress from the pattern with which I made the Young Miss’s red tunic.

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Pattern Description:
Pullover dress is close-fitting at the bust, has slightly flared skirt and drapes extending into tie-ends with raw edges, wrong side of fabric will show. May be worn forward or backwards. Wearing instructions are included.

Pattern Sizing:
I used size XXL.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?
Yes this time.  I still didn’t make the wrap.

Were the instructions easy to follow?
I didn’t use the instructions.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I still like that this is an incredibly simple pattern.

Fabric Used:
A 4-way stretch from the stash. I’d bought it from Gorgeous Fabrics a while back.

Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made:
I added 4″ to the length, then hacked it off again.
I also removed a 2″ wedge from the front armhole on each side.
Finally I used fabric for neck and armhole bindings.
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Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
I would recommend this super simple 2-piece pattern to others.  I look better in things with more waist definition.

Or as the Young Miss put it, “this dress looks like a shapeless sack.”  Thank you, YM ;).
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Finished: Butterick 5336 Harem Pants

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I have a bit of a love affair with harem pants.  I remember making two pair for freshman year in high school.  One pair was corduroy. I wore them for my first day of high school.  Yeah, I was that girl.

I went on to make several additional pair of harem pants over the years.  I mostly wear them in the summer now. Yeah, still that girl.

I’ve been dreaming about a pair of grey harem pants since 2011. I bought the fabric and everything.  Too bad the fabric shrunk significantly during pre-wash.  I’ma wear ’em to Aqua Zumba anyway.

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Pattern Description:
Misses’ harem pants pattern from 1991.

Pattern Sizing:
I lost my original pattern somewhere along the way. I traced a pair of harem pants I made freshman year in high school.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?
Sort of. It wasn’t as loose fitting as usual.

Were the instructions easy to follow?
The instructions used to be easy. See above re: lost pattern.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
Seriously?  I love this pattern.  This version is probably my 6th pair over the years.

Fabric Used:
A grey woven from my stash.

Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made:
I made some necessary changes to the pattern.  I have a 36″ inseam and a 49″ outseam. When
my fabric shrank during pre-wash,  the yardage came up short. I cut the legs narrower than the pattern called for. I then let out all the seams to 3/8″.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
This pattern is a favorite of mine for summer pants. They’re kooky,  but I love them. I would recommend this pattern if the pants match someone else’s kooky style & one can get ahold of a copy.

Finished: Butterick 5030 Wrap (House) Dress

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And here we have another item that has been complete for months. When we first moved, I thought it would be good to have a housedress. I took all the fitting work I’d done out for a test drive with Butterick 5030.

Pattern Description:

Flared, wrapped dress, below mid-knee has semi-fitted bodice, front band or collar, sleeve variations. A: contrast bands and belt. B, F: purchased belt. C, D: self fabric belts. E: cuffs and single layered sash.

Pattern Sizing:

I initially made a size 22, based on the pattern envelope.   That was MUCH too large.  I had to do a lot of cutting down of the muslin pieces to get a wearable product.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?

For the most part,  yes.

Were the instructions easy to follow?

I didn’t follow them.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?

I like that the pattern is for a woven wrap dress & that the pattern has so many views.

I dislike the sizing. I originally made 5030 based on my measurements from the pattern envelope,  = disaster.   Next time, I also need to raise the armhole by 1/2 inch to increase my range of motion and maybe cut down on the sleeve head. This time, I used the bodice adjustments & a skirt from patterns I’d already fitted to get the woven wrap dress look.

Fabric Used:

I used some midweight black stretch woven from the stash.  I had to piece part of the skirt due to scant yardage. But hey, no waste!

Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made:

Used the skirt modified from McCall’s 8832.
Used the altered bodice from Butterick 4976.  When I made 5030, it was just huge.
I raised the neckline 2 inches. Then I had to take a (fairly large) tuck in the right front bodice to eliminate gaping. That could be due to the fabric stretching while being handled.
I also added snaps at the waist to keep it closed. Then I added 2 hooks and eyes to keep covered. 1 hook and eye set was much too prominent, so I removed it after the first wear. I’m thinking a clear snap.

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Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?

I am pleased with the house dress and will definitely use the fitted pattern again. I would recommend B5030 with modifications.

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What I Found: Knit Tank Top Patterns

Excuse me for the digression from sewing progress…This post is for you Ms. Erika :).

I got a question about knit tank patterns and thought I would turn what I found into a post in case it is helpful for others too.  The requirements I was working with were the pattern had to have wide straps and be suitable for knits.  I decided to impose a couple of other restrictions on the search:  the patten had to be easily accessible.  Here’s what I found:

Colette Sorbetto

This is a downloadable pattern from Colette Patterns.  Everybody and their best friend’s auntie has made this pattern and I can see the appeal.  There are only 2 pattern pieces and the pattern is FREE.  I like free a lot.  I have seen many really wonderful renditions of the Sorbetto and so many customized versions, both in woven fabrics and knits. 

Butterick 5948

This is a Butterick Fast & Easy pattern with multiple views.  This pattern looks very simple to execute and can be customized once the fit is perfected.  This is a pattern drafted for wovens, but very easily converted to knits.

Jalie 3245

This is a strictly knit pattern from independent pattern company Jalie.  I saw some very nice versions of this top on PatternReview.  The pattern contains a raglan sleeve top along with the tank and a tunic length tank as well.   Another nice thing about Jalie patterns are their built-in ability to scale the patterns from child to adult sizes.  This pattern is readily available through Jalie’s website and select retailers.

Simplicity 8523

Image from Pattern Review

Much like it’s Butterick twin above, this is a Simplicity pattern with multiple views which could be easily converted to knits.

Simplicity 2599

Image from Pattern Review

This is a woven top pattern from Simplicity which currently has 112 reviews on PR and was a best pattern of 2010 on the site.  The top has neckline variations and B, C, and D cup pattern pieces.  Again, this looks like a pattern that would be easy to convert to knits.








New Look 6483

More of the same woven shell tops with neckline variations, this time from New Look.  I especially like the bra-friendly, almost halter style of view C with it’s close neck. I also like the lower retail price of New Look patterns.  This one goes for $4.29 on Simplicity’s website.

Burda 7645

Image from Pattern Review

This is a knit tunic-length top from Burda Style, the envelope-pattern arm of Burda sold by Simplicity in the US.  I like the longer length of this tank and the fact that there is a sleeved version available in the pattern envelope as well.  The finished tops look loose fitting on the models, so that could provide a nice amount of play for personal fitting preferences and length changes.

In terms of accessibility, all of these patterns are currently available for sale online at their respective distributors/manufacturers’ websites.  Also, Simplicity Patterns are on sale for $0.99 at Hobby Lobby all week!

While noting down the Butterick and Simplicity tops, it struck me how many older patterns include a shell pattern, which might be just right to turn into a knit tank.  I also remember seeing something in one of my sewing books about converting woven patterns to knit or vice-versa.  Off to find that and hopefully post it today.