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I am a mother, a new grandmother, and a teacher. But whatever happens in my life, I keep sewing. I have worked as a political communicator and now as a teacher in my formal life. I have also written extensively on sewing. I have been a frequent contributor and contributing editor of Threads magazine and the Australian magazine Dressmaking with Stitches. My first book Sew.. the garment-making book of knowledge will be published in May 2018 and is available for pre-order from Amazon


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Thursday, July 15, 2010

Butterick 5495 revisited

Butterick 5495 has been on my mind. I know I had issues with this pattern and its archaic instructions, and I know I was mystified by the loose gathering under the bust that came in again, too tight I thought, at the hips.

The thing is that the basic idea was a good one, to gather the fullness with an unattached band of fabric looped through openings in the seams, and so I decided to try this pattern again, the way I thought it should have been drafted.

The results of those experiments are here. For the top above all I did was add 5" to the front centre piece only, 2 1/2" at each side seam and leave the rest of the pattern the same with the changes to the neckline I noted in my earlier review. Oh and I bound the back neck with self-fabric rather than stitch and turn it under.

This extra fabric liberated the front and I think allowed the gathering under the bust to flow more naturally, or maybe I am just happier with a different look.

The next thing I did was sort of crazy. I read once in an old sewing book that your muslins for dresses could be nightgowns so that's what I made here. All I did was change the shaped back seam to something straighter by laying it on the fold and added length and the extra 5" to the back piece too at the side seams - I sort of just cut it all wider and A lined it a bit. I used a soft pointelle knit from Fabricmart is some light cotton that really would be useless for anything but a nightgown. And I made the sleeveless version too which really just produces some loose capped sleeves. I bound the sleeve hems too because it was easy to do when I was already sitting at the machine and I was too lazy to get up and rethread the coverhem machine.

I am pretty pleased with this and think this could make a very nice dress, very comfortable and quick to sew.


NancyDaQ said...

Looks nice!

Karyn said...

I love the look of your new top! I've been following your progess on this pattern as I have it also and want to try it out soon. Other than adding the 5" to the front, did you sew it up the same as the instructions?

Barbara said...

The other things I did are described in my first post on this pattern 6-13 of June I believe. I bound the back neck and sewed up the front neckline a bit in sort of a dart rather than leave the finished edge just sitting there and to make it not quite as low. Hope this makes sense.