Sunday 4 March 2018

Butterick 4384 - part 1

When I first looked at this pattern my initial thought was, "Hm, buttonholes down the front. Not my favourite thing". But look closely (Butterick kindly put the back views on the front of the envelope) and you can see that there is a zip fasten as well. It is a false front placket, so the only buttonholes are on the cuff of the long-sleeved version.Yay!

Front and back views

I'm using a thick but soft plain purple cotton for this dress, and going for long sleeves. The pattern calls for 1½" wide lace, which is attached right across the front and shaped over the bust darts.

Pattern, showing lace placement

The only lace I could only find that wide was nylon and unattractive, so I went for a braid instead. However it is only 1⅛" / 3cm wide, so I added a fifth row and changed the spacing. It took a bit of fiddling to get it so that the rows of braid don't overlap.

Front with the braid attached

The braid did tend to gape away from the fabric, so I ended up sewing round each circle - fun! Then I decided that I needed to remake the front placket because I wasn't happy with it. Fortunately I had some fabric leftover, and recut the pieces with the front slightly larger than the back so that the seamline doesn't show when they are stitched together.

Front, placket and buttons pinned onto Nancy

I've decided to go for the purple buttons rather than the cream, partly because the cream ones will look odd on the cuffs. The purple buttons do have quite long shanks though, and stick out from the placket a bit.

The collar pieces are sewn onto a band and then this is attached to the dress. I keep forgetting that the opening is at the back; I even cut the collar interfacing out on the fold as usual, and then had to split it!

Collar and band made up

So far I feel as though I have been sewing this dress forever and not got anywhere, but hopefully the end result will be worth it.


  1. Oh yay, you decided to go with this pattern first! It was the one I was most dying to see made up as I love simple 60s shift dresses. I love the fabric and trim you chose, it's going to look great. xx

  2. Thanks Cate! I was thrilled when I found the trim, I think it works really well for the period. And I've found some better buttons as well! xx