Spotty '60s Retro Dress

The two weeks of sunshine in Ireland have faded away into the traditional bank holiday weekend weather of wind and rain. Trapped inside by this inclement weather, I have decided to catch up on blogging, and share some of my recent sewing projects, which I have been churning out in the last couple of weeks.

I've finished my spotty 1960s dress, which I started a couple of weeks ago, and am planning to wear to a wedding next weekend. (I hope for everyone sake the weather is much better next weekend).

The pattern is a Butterick 1960s reprint (#6582), with two skirt variations, a tight 'wiggle' skirt and a much fuller skirt. I had already tried the wiggle skirt version of this pattern, but it was not successful - the shape wasn't right for me and the fabric did not have enough give in it.  However, I still liked the pattern, and I've decided to give it another go, this time with the fuller skirt.

The pattern was good, with clear instructions. Having decided I need to take more care with my sewing and do everything properly, rather than just rushing to get the project finished, I took extra care with this project. When I got to an instruction I didn't understand (in this case under stitching), instead of just skipping it and fudging the next step, I looked up the term and taught myself what to do. I also had lots of fun with my new pinking shears!

As a result this project took me longer, but I think the final outcome is of a better standard than my usual sewing projects. The main change I made was to take about 5 inches off the bottom of the skirt, I'm not a big fan of the calf length hemline of many vintage dresses, and I don't find them very flattering. As a result my hem is not as perfectly straight as it might be, but with such a full skirt I think I just about get away with it.  I did have some trouble getting the gathers right on the shoulders, partly as I used slightly too heavy interfacing on one side.

I was planning to make a fabric belt to go with the dress, as suggested in the pattern, but I happened to find a nice white belt with a flower buckle when I was out shopping last weekend, and I think it goes really well with the dress.

The net petticoat I made last year is, I think, an essential addition to the dress, as without it I think the skirt is too full and heavy, which makes it hang down very heavily. Plus I made the petticoat nearly a year ago and have not had a chance to wear it yet!

Sorry about the quality of the photographs - as I said at the top its grey and wet outside, and the light inside is not great. Hopefully, I get some better ones next weekend at the wedding.


  1. that dress is terrific!! i love the happy color, it would look nice paired with red too :)

  2. I love it! It turned out great!

  3. Hi ladies, thanks for the comments, glad you all liked the dress :)

    I love the idea of pairing it with red, it'll give me another excuse to wear it out too!


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