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New to me patterns!

January 11, 2014
2 Butterick, 3 Simplicity


Hello All,

I’m new to WeSewRetro and relatively new to sewing. I thought I’d share some of the patterns I plan on making in the next few months.

There are 2 Butterick patterns and I know at least one of them is a familiar face to all of you. There are also 3 1970s Simplicity patterns. I was extremely excited to find them at my local Salvation Army Thrift Store, uncut and in pristine condition for a whopping $0.58 USD for all 3 together.

I know from reading about other’s experiences on the B4790 Walk-away dress that I’ll have to do some tailoring because it is the re-release pattern and not the original which apparently has caused some fit issues. I also know that I will probably need to grade the Simplicity 9147 from 1979 up a size, but the pattern may have enough ease where that won’t be necessary.

Have any of you sewn these patterns? Any tips for the beginner? Any suggestions for which comes first?
2 Butterick, 3 Simplicity

I apologize for the image quality, my camera has recently taken a nose-dive and I had to resort to sharing via the camera on my cellular.


  1. I made the Butterick 4790 a few years ago. I remember that I didn’t buy my size, and that it didn’t size up easily, but I don’t think it was too bad otherwise. I would recommend you measure your pattern pieces at least twice before cutting into your fabric. As for what order to sew, start with the easiest and work your way up. Take time to practice new-to-you techniques on scraps. Like any skill, sewing gets easier the more you do it, and it is a very good idea to build your confidence in little bites. These bits of wisdom were learned the hard way! 🙂 Have fun!!

  2. Hi! I started sewing about two years ago when I was a freshman in high school and I didn’t start to sew well until a few months ago. I recommend starting with the Simplicity skirt pattern. I have this one and skirts seem like the easiest thing to sew. I also have the Butterick pattern on the top left corner, but mine is the original from the ’50s. I’ve been wanting to make that dress, as I heard that it can be made very quickly. It requires a lot of double-fold bias tape along the edges, which can be tricky to sew when a zig-zag stitch isn’t used. This pattern is best after sewing a few dresses. Good luck with the sewing projects!

  3. I’ve sewn 4790 twice- and both times I graded up a couple of sizes to I think what would be a 24 or a 26, I can’t remember now. The biggest problem I had was having to cut some of the pieces in two pieces due to fabric widths being too narrow for such a large size, adding an extra seam or two. However, I think they both turned out nice, and were easy enough, though applying all the bias tape was time consuming. The second time I made it, I made my own bias tape for it, so took even longer. 🙂

  4. Im looking forward to both butterick patterns, espcially to see how you go with the “simple” walk away dress and whether you are able to overcome it’s largely publicised problems with the front skirt riding up.

    The other one is in my to do list too – though I will wait till closer to southern hemisphere winter for it but I love it very sexy.

    Good luck all round and keep us posted.

  5. Thanks everyone! I’ve checked out the pattern review website and have learned that the B5813 patter will be something I make when I’m a little bit more advanced. I’ve never sewn a lining into anything and apparently the sleeves on that dress are an undertaking.
    I’m actually kind of excited about binding edges with bias tape as I’ve never done it before, but I also enjoy putting in zippers, especially now that I’ve found my machine’s zipper foot!
    I’ll keep you posted on the projects, I’m still hunting for the perfect fabrics for them.

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