Finished: Butterick 4919, The not so little Black Dress

18:09 Renée 3 Comments


Again I am a bit late because I already finished this dress two weeks ago. It came out very wrinkled after washing it so I intended to iron it for the pictures but could not find the energy for it. So today I thought; who cares about wrinkles, let's just take pictures and get on with it! Sorry about the cat hair, I didn't have the energy to remove that either (it's a BIG dress!).

This dress has a bit of an odd construction. The bodice front has two short 'flaps' on the sides that you put underneath the bodice and close in the back. The zipper closes over it so you don't see it. The bodice back has a long tie on each side that you wrap around the waist and then tie in the back. The bodice front and bodice back are not attached to each other at the sides. The lining of the bodice is slip stitched to the zipper and the skirt. It has a center back zipper and a full circle skirt.

This is my second ever sewing project and I have to say that this pattern wasn't very suitable for such a beginner level. I was a little misled by the reviews on Pattern Review where a lot of ladies said that this was "such an easy dress to make". Well I didn't find it particularly easy. It takes quite a bit of hand sewing and sewing the skirt to the bodice and under stitching the lining was quite hard for me. But! somehow I managed and the dress actually turned out really well. Although some bits were hard or time consuming, it was overall smooth sailing. 

The instructions tell you to use hook and eyes for the flaps in the back but that seemed too bulky for me so I used snaps instead. My zipper was a little bit too short so I had to put a hook and eye in the neck. 

I made a rolled hem entirely by hand with the help of this video. Yes that took me.. hours. I think 10 or so. But it wasn't that bad actually, it felt very rewarding to put so much hand sewing in this dress.

And this is what it looks like when you twirl in a floor length full circle skirted dress!

The 50s aren't really my peroid, but I can't deny loving dresses like these. I felt a little closer to these ladies


  1. The dress looks like it fits you like a charm. What a lovely dress! Is it cotton you are using? I wonder what this dress would be like with a rayon fabric? It looks like a dress with a lot of flow. I bet it helped out a lot that other people had done the pattern? I really love how it ties in the front! Also, I love how you did a pose just like the lady on the cover:) This looks like a pattern where you can take parts and adapt it later on. I think if I attempted this pattern I might like more of a sleeve. It looks like such a wonderful pattern with a lot of great potential. The skirt just flows so lovely.

  2. Joanna: Yes that's a big plus of this pattern, it will always fit you perfectly because of the waist ties! And oh, I completely forgot to mention; it's a slightly stretchy cotton, quite thin but stiff at the same time. I think you could use almost any type of fabric for this dress. I guess you could extend the shoulders to make it look like more of a cap sleeve but I don't think you could make an actual sleeve since the bodice front and back are not attached to each other at the sides.


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