Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Thoughts on Butterick Retro B5708

My first sewing-related post!

In my last post I mentioned that I had recently started learning to sew, with the help of my wonderful and very talented Mum (she made her wedding suit, y'know). My first two projects - a 1959 cropped blouse and a 1963 sundress - went really well, especially considering I'd only been sewing two weeks (!) and hopefully I'll get some photos up at some point (chronology is going out the window, I think). A few days ago I eagerly started on my latest: Butterick Retro B5708, a lovely full skirted dress from 1953, with four charming ways to wear the neckline, thanks to the sweet little shoulder ties! After procuring some crisp white cotton from the amazing Fabric Land (don't be put off by the naff website and lack of online ordering- they're pretty good), I was all set to go!

Rated 'Easy', I didn't think I'd be punching above my weight, especially as my last dress came out so well, but quite frankly, this has been a pain in the arse (if I can be so indelicate). As you can see from the picture above, the bodice is quite unusual, made from three seperate pieces sewn together along a v-shaped main seam- and that's where the problems started. Even after painstakingly getting them to match up without bunching, and matching front and back, when I tried on the dress after putting in the zipper today, the bodice still wasn't sitting right. Cue intervention by Mum...

Hopefully it'll be done by tomorrow, and I'll be glad to see it finished, that's for sure! I know it'll look lovely on, especially with my new petticoat (post to come later)- I just wish it hadn't been quite so stressful to make! I wouldn't discourage anyone from using this pattern, as it is lovely, but just be aware it's definitely *not* for beginners, despite what the envelope says...

I'm quaking in my vintage peep-toes about the other Retro pattern I've got lined up, rated 'average' (gulp). Anyone tried B5556?

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