1960s

1967 Butterick 4313 A-Line Coat Dress

April 5, 2010


Pattern Description:
Semi-fitted A-Line coatdress with side buttons and loop closing. With short or 3/4 length sleeves

Pattern Sizing:
size 12/bust 32 (32/25/34)

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?
absolutely. i even took my inspiration from the pattern envelope and went with a red fabric; in this case, with NY elegant fabrics down the street from me, i couldn’t resist the gabardine.

Were the instructions easy to follow?
yes, but it would have been even easier if i had actually followed them. in what can only be described as a particularly inspired (or misguided?) attack of the clevers, i decided to use this pattern as a sort of practice garment leading up to vogue 2738 (a nina ricci coat dress from vogue paris originals) and ultimately to vogue 2443, a couturier design pucci coat dress. so, the instructions on this pattern got re-written and complicated as i decided to integrate the tailoring techniques provided by the excellent books “tailoring” and “jackets for real people.”

happily, the basic butterick shell that would become my masterpiece was about as simple as it could get: 4 well-drafted pieces that were easy to practice tailoring techniques on. i used the fusible method of tailoring the undercollar and front pieces with some solid success for a first effort. i followed the instructions outlined in “tailoring” to create a lining pattern and adapted the quick-lining method from “jackets for real people” for a beautiful piped lining that went in like a dream.

my major hangup came in attaching the front facing piece to the undercollar. i’m afraid that even after five tries i couldn’t get all of the notches lined up properly and wound up with a very unfortunate, and visible, wonky kind of gathering along part of the facing. happily, it is only visible on the inside of the jacket, so only i know of my shame.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
simple, basic, well-drafted and could not ask for a more perfect fit. perfect for a first outing in tailoring techniques. and great for a beginner in all things vintage and sewing, like myself. finally, the button-loop technique here seemed tedious at the time but really produced a clean and elegant closing for the dress.

Fabric Used:
luscious red wool gabardine, lined with a sort of geometric/pucci-inspired poly lining in red, gray, white and black.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
i drafted a simple lining pattern and piped it along the join. fusible tailoring, not specified in pattern, went a long way in giving the collar and lapels some great body and shape.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
highly recommended for people who want to do a simple vintage pattern with some classic style and a mod flair, and, of course, great for tailoring techniques.

Conclusion:
a really fun pattern that was easy to work with.

these pictures are awful, since i do not have a proper dress form and i don’t have a helpful roommate to take the photos i wanted to share. in spite of the horrid photo of me, modeling my best white gloves and very non-sixties cocktail hat, i can assure you that the dress is actually pretty great and i am looking forward to wearing it–out in public and everything!

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