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Thursday, 23 June 2016

Butterick 6495

Sewing this dress was not without its problems - but they were all problems of my own making. :)

I purchased this 1970's pattern off Ebay.  It was complete, which seems rarer for children's sewing patterns because of all the little fiddly pieces that can easily go astray - the bottom of the envelope was also split so it was even more of a surprise to find it complete!

It should have been fairly easy to construct - but my first mistake was snipping into the facing fabric when trimming the neck seam.  My finger points to the evidence above!  I decided to cover this with some ribbon I had that I think previously had been used to wrap a present.  I did however justify doing this as facings are a pet hate of mine - they always seem to poke over to the front of the fabric as catch stitching at the side seams never seems to be enough to anchor it.  Well these are well and truly anchored now.

The second thing that had me flinging this dress across the room was its three inch hem allowance.  I cannot sew a wide hem onto an a-line dress/skirt.  I can't.  I tried gathering, steaming, tiny darting, just 'going for it' (my preferred method) and it all looked like a dog's dinner.  I gave up after the third attempt - trimmed the hem allowance down to an inch and did a narrow turned up hem.  I have since researched wide curved hems and I could have tried cutting out notches out of the wider turned fabric and closing them in with a whipstitch.  Any other tips gratefully, gratefully received.

Despite all that I love the finished dress.  How can I not - it's a teeny tiny cherry dress.   It consists of the simple (hah!) A-line dress and an apron that is fastened onto the front bodice with buttons.  The buttons used were from my charity shop button tin.

The apron then ties at the back. 

 I did try and produce a nice finish to the garment as I am giving it to my local school for their school fair raffle.

I put in a handmade label....

...inserted a lapped zip...

... and french seamed all of the seams, apart from the centre back - which I finished with a binding.

I printed out a label for the dress and I hope it raises some funds for the school.  A special thank you to my sister who gave me the fabric. xxx


  1. This is a truly adorable dress. I love a cherry print!

    As for the deep hem on a rounded edge...I do a lot of this in October/November. I have an overpadded ironing board and glasshead pins. I pin the hem up on the board, leaving the excess bumped up between the pins, and then I iron the 'bumps' over and pin them down. I go all the way around the hem, pinning it first, and then I adjust and iron over the pins. There will be adjustments.
    I have to remember to pull the pins trapped under the fabric, and I have forgotten a few. If it's a big hem, it's a royal pain, but they aren't my dresses, so I do what I contracted for.
    And the girls look so cute in them, it's hard to say no.

    1. Oooh thanks for the tip. This sounds like it would give a more even result than I managed to achieve - I think I had trouble dealing with the excess consistently through the hem if you see what I mean. Thank you for your advice. :)

  2. Sooo Cuuuute :D
    Who ever gets this, will love it to bits! Doing things like this for charity must feel so good, such a nice thing to do :)

    1. I just love all those vintage patterns you see for young girl's dresses but my circle of friends now all have older children... and I am in nooooo way broody! I just love any excuse to make these up.

  3. What a darling little dress - but small patterns can be awfully fiddly! I think hem facings work well when the side seams are slanted or the hemline has a curve, but I don't normally remember to do them myself.