Vintage Sewing

Retro Butterick 4790-the 1950’s walk a way dress

September 9, 2011

If it was not for Katrina from Edelweiss pattern Blog I would not of sewn this ,but was interested in doing my first sew along .In fact she has the one she sewed  posted as well ,from a few days ago. A beautiful peach /floral rendition .It’s amazing to see from the same pattern how many different versions can come out of it . I was on pattern review looking at a few as well . As katrina pointed out in her blog this is actually not the original pattern as Butterick altered it to what they figured would suit the modern taste better. Well I skipped the petticoat part of the tutorial ( sorry Katrina)  I am not a fan of puffy skirts , on myself though I agree thoroughly it looks better visually. For a wrap dress it still must be fitted properly to suit you ! I have seen other sewers complain that  they do not like it due to the fit . Initially I felt the same .One sew retro blogger complained that it on her list for the worst ever patterns , and posted an old picture of someone wearing what looks to be like the same dress.
My debate about that  is as a fashion student ,and yes I did take fashion design back in 1996 certain dresses are really meant to be on certain figure types and sizes then others . When I did  shows  I quickly learned about that  , in college .We had to do a few for various classes and productions for our diplomas .
When fitted properly , Katrina has proven this is a gorgeous wrap dress..despite some of  the bad rep it has been given by others. And “YES ” , this dress fits better on me then my “judie ” dressform !

my blog (shhh…I accidentally deleted my first so my blogging has found a new home )
The journal of Chicky Chickita  

  1. The fit looks good on your Judie. I am guilty of giving the modern pattern bad rap too, I had gaping shoulders problems with the overdress as well as some self-inflicted issues but the fit of the sheath was so perfect and overall I enjoyed wearing it. I'm tempted to give it another go after seeing all these great sew-along dresses!

    I absolutely agree with the points you make, I think people forget two critical things – that the envelope image is stylised to have a longer torso and high bust with more defined curves, so unless you miraculously happen to be that shape, its never going to look like that on and that the originals are designed to be worn with specific body-molding foundation garments from the same era (girdles, corselettes, cami-slips, crinolines).

    Since then figure measurement ratios and underwear have changed so its unrealistic to expect a perfect fit. It would be akin to putting on an Edwardian dress without a corset and petticoats then blaming the dress for not making you an instant S shape nor fitting. Besides Butterick's changes probably also altered elements of the design as a result but didn't alter the artwork to a modern silhouette. The dress on the site photo is terribly unflattering, although not the worst I've seen – they seem to have the Sound of Music bug and make evrything from recycled drapes!.

  2. That is lovely! You did an excellent job, and those shades of blue are so cute together. When you get the picture on your blog, could you please link to the post on the sew-along "party" post? Thanks so much for sharing!

    Happy sewing!


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