Thursday, January 20, 2011

Butterick 5559 in wool jersey

If you are thinking of making this dress, make good friends with your iron.  Make sure it's clean and steaming right, because if you want the tucks to turn out well you're going to have to press, press, and press.  The dress front bodice and skirt have darts that are hidden in the tucks (essentially, you need to stitch in the ditch for parts of the front tucks).  You'll need to press those darts well in order to sew the tucks.  When I made my muslin, I thought that I'd sew the darts, then assemble the dress and sew the tucks in order to get perfect matching on the sides.  I found out that the way that Butterick recommends you do this, sew the tucks and then assemble the dress, is better because the tucks chevron on one side.

This dress is also short.  I shortened the pattern by 2" in my muslin and realized that it would not be an office appropriate dress unless I left the hemline as drafted.  The dress in the pictures are a straight from the package hemline length, so if you are not wee like me you'll have to add some length.

There's a lot of up front work with this pattern.  The pattern pieces are cut from single thickness fabric, you need to carefully mark the darts and tucks.  I think that altogether, this took me about 2 hours to do, because I wanted to be sure I got all the markings right.

This is the result.  I made it up in a heavy teal wool jersey that I bought last year from Gorgeous Fabrics.  It was amazing to work with, and I think there will be more wool jersey in my future.  My muslin was a lighter jersey that draped wonderfully but was a pain to sew.  So if you want a slinkier dress, I recommend a lighter jersey but it will be tricky to do the darts and tucks.



There's a little sagging in the upper chest, but this didn't happen with the lighter jersey.

Again, some fabric bulging in the small of my back, but it's the fabric.


Here's a detail photo on my left side, where some of the tucks match and others are a little bit off.  I figured I could drive myself crazy trying to get this perfectly lined up, but that's not the kind of seamstress I am.

Tuck detail at left side seam.
In fact,  what kind of seamstress am I?  I'm the kind who experiments with Steam-a-Seam for the hem and finds out that it's a wonderful way to get out of handsewing a hem!  Yay for discovering Steam-a-Seam!

29 comments:

  1. I love it! The dress is so flattering and very well made. Looks fantastic on you.

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  2. Love this dress!!! I bought the pattern knowing I couldn't wear it for at least a year, but I can't wait to sew it. Yours looks amazing. I love the color!

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  3. Absolutely GOEGEOUS!!! That dress is on my todo list. You did a really great job!!

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  4. The dress is beautiful, I love the color. Steam-A-Seam is my friend also, especially with knits :)

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  5. Lovely dress and a great job on matching/chevroning the tucks.

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  6. What a beautiful dress! It looks good on you and you picked a great color, too!

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  7. wow...wow...wow... i don't know what else to say :D

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  8. This color looks great on you

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  9. Squeeeee! This is so cute! So flattering! So pretty! (and it looks) So comfortable! Great job.

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  10. That dress looks great on you! Good job.

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  11. Your dress looks really wonderful, love the colour too.

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  12. Awesome! It seems so simple and comfortable, yet very visually interesting, well done.

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  13. You mustn't beat yourself up about this project. It's great. I want one just like it!

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  14. This dress is just gorgeous!!! You did a beautiful. LOVE IT!!!!!!!

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  15. I'm impressed. This kind of pattern is way too scary for me to attempt. Hmm...steam a seam...I have not tried it yet, but since I totally suck at hemming I will need to try it out.

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  16. Amazing dress - it looks very expensive, the colour is gorgeous and it suits you perfectly!

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  17. This is a frickin awesome dress! The color is great. I like the length on you too. It looks great with the boots!

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  18. What a great dress! I really like it, fabulous colour too!

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  19. GORGEOUS! Finally got this pattern last week, you are making me want to sew it up right now.

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  20. Love the colour on you, love the pattern to death and love the styling, those are the CUTEST boots ever!!!

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  21. OMG that dress looks wonderful on you! Great job!

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  22. Congratulations - it looks great! I made the same dress last week in red. I'm really enjoying seeing others' versions of it in blog land.

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  23. Lovely. You did a great job with this pattern.

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  24. Another gorgeous version of this dress and in such a pretty color too!

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