Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Butterick 5707 - The Beauty and The Beast

Have you ever selected a pattern that was so you and you just had to make it? You make your usual pattern adjustments, every detail perfectly ... but then.., You knew this was coming. But then.., after pulling it all together. It just didn't work for you. Something went wrong. Maybe a lot did. Usually, I don't like to blog about projects that went wrong.

Most of the time, I can attribute the "wrong" to myself. Such is the case with Butterick 5707. I started this project several weeks ago. I made my usual pattern adjustments. I didn't make a muslin. My bad. The muslin would have saved me from the dissatisfaction I feel today. Why did this project fail? A few things. Here's the complete review.  

Pattern Description:
MISSES'DRESS AND BELT: Dress has bias yoke and sleeve cut-in-one, shoulder pleat forming neckline drape, fitted bodice, gathered/darted waist, semi-fitted skirt, side zipper and self belt. A: self tie and sleeve darts.

Pattern Sizing:
6 to 22; I used size 16 instead of my usual 14. First, mistake.

Recommended Fabric
Crepes, Cotton, Linen, Woolens. Unsuitable for obvious diagonals.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?
Yes and no. My fabric is crisper then the recommended fabrics. That could be mistake number 2.

Were the instructions easy to follow?
Easy, nothing difficult.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
Let's start with the likes. - Style of the dress; the vintage look. I've seen similar styles worn by actresses in classic movies aired on TCM.
- The darted sleeves. - Bodice options.
- The self belt.

 Now the dislikes:
- The gathers along the waist. Not a good look for me. - The skirt was too full at the bottom. - The roominess of the bodice; it looked too big and too wrinkled. - This one is on me. Poor hemming. I can easily redo.

Fabric Used:
I used silk dupioni. I underlined it with china silk.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
I made a few in additional to my regular fitting adjustments in hopes of making the dress likeable.
- Prominent Shoulder blades
- I hated the gathering at the bottom of the bodice. So I made two darts on either side matching them with the darts on the skirt. This helped but didn't completely resolve the fullness issue in the upper portion of the dress.
- I slightly tapered the skirt mid hip to the hem and added a slit to one side. In the end, my hem wasn't good. This can be fixed as well.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
I won't sew it again. Right now, I'm only thinking of making some adjustments to see if I can salvage the dress. I want it to work. This was suppose to be my contribution to the Haute Couture Blue Challenge for the 2013 Fashion Show. I need it to be as close to perfect as I can get it. I do have an alternate dress though. I would recommend it to others simply because I can't legitimately say this pattern doesn't work because it was poorly drafted. But I do recommend that you make a muslin first.

Conclusion: Try it if you like. Make a muslin before you cut into your fashion fabric. Make sure the style and fit are perfect for you. I still like this silhouette, except for the fullness of the skirt. Finally, I'm still smiling and hopeful that I can save this dress.  

Parting video Mastering Silk with Sandra Betzina.

Happy Sewing! C


  1. I love the dress on you and the color is absolutely stunning.

  2. Cennetta, The dress is gorgeous on you.The colour is divine! Maybe the choice of fabric is the culprit for your issues, but it is a beautiful dress.

  3. I think the shininess of the fabric doesnt help ,it shows things that you would probably not notice so much in a matte fabric.I hope you get it to work though as the colour is lovely!

  4. I LOVE the color of this dress and am sorry you had some issues with it. I'm glad that you can salvage it. A dress that pretty definitely needs to be showcased!

  5. The dress and its colour are beautiful. I hope you can find a way to make it work for you.

  6. Oh this is so unfortunate! It's such beautiful fabric and such a lovely colour on you that I certainly hope with a few tweaks that you can save this dress!

  7. What a shame! I also love the colour. The electric blue really suits your skin tone. It's a pity that it was wasted on a pattern that didn't work out. On the bright side, I find it cheering to know that even experienced sewers whom I admire have flops too.

  8. Somehow you have to save this and wear it as this color is beyond fabulous on you. Cut off the top, take in the skirt and pair it with a great top, maybe something sparkly for the holidays.

  9. Thank you everyone. Rhonda - I was sitting at home thinking about how to save this dress. You idea is perfect.

  10. Why not turn it into a fabulous skirt incorporating the belt.

  11. Cennetta, that is an absolutely gorgeous color on you!



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