Butterick Patterns by Gertie B6380 - 1940s Style Tea Dress

by - 3/12/2017

Butterick Patterns by Gertie B6380 - 1940s Style Tea Dress

I'm so excited to share this dress with you! I feel so lucky with my sewing mojo having made my two of my new favourite dresses in a row (the first being THIS Simplicity number). I've be lusting after this Butterick B6380 pattern since it came out and have had it in my pattern stash since last year, waiting for the right fabric to come along! It's a classic 1940s vintage style tea dress, designed by my sewing muse Gertie. 

Here's a peek at the pattern:
Such a lovely, simple vintage style
I've not made a dress quite like this yet, but it's a style I love and hoped it would be flattering on my curvy figure. Before I sew a new make, I like to have a look around online to see people's versions of the pattern sewn up. But it was really hard to find any versions of this pattern and I have no idea why! So hopefully my review might sway anyone who was thinking about this pattern and inspire someone else to sew it too!

Why didn't I make you sooner?
Personally, I hadn't jumped on this pattern straight away as I was daunted by the style and it is fully lined. I thought it may have been a little ambitious and a bit of a jump from a cotton shirt dress (my usual!). However, I'm pleasantly surprised with the difficulty of this pattern and it was far more straightforward that I had expected.

I love the details of the pattern, especially the neckline.
I made the dress in about a day, leaving the hemming to the following day. The instructions were clear and easy to follow and whilst the pattern has some details which might look a little fiddly, it actually came together pretty quickly. The fact the dress is fully lined, makes it feel extra special. The lining certainly does suit the dress and adds volume and stability to the shape.

Instead of a lapped zipper, I chose my trusty old concealed zip. I did have a little bit of a wobble trying to figure sewing the concealed zip with a full lining, but only at the bottom of the zip. It looks lovely and tidy from the outside, but there is a bump on the lining on the inside. But I can live with that.

I'm a UK 10/12 with a 34DD bust, I cut the size 14 on the packet. Once I had sewn the dress up to the point of adding the zip, I made some alterations to fit my shape. Personally, I like to cut a generous size and take it in later after trying on. Having a large bust, I find this the easiest way to get around it. I could have done a full bust adjustment to the pattern piece, but this style of the bust and neckline are pretty flexible. Once I had taken a few inches off the back, it fits like a glove.

Sewing Summary:

Pattern: Butterick Pattern by Gertie 6380 Sweeheart Neckline Dress with Gathered Bodice

Fabric: 2m (with plenty left over) of viscose Sailors Night Anchor & Stars fabric and a satin lining

Notions: 22" concealed zip & 3 buttons to finish

Sewing time: 1 day and the hem on the following day

Modifications: I used a concealed zip instead of a lapped zipper and altered the pattern size (as stated above)

Fit: After a few tweaks, it fits perfectly!

Difficulty: Simpler than I thought, but certainly a challenge. Great project for confident beginners and for advanced seamstresses alike.

Watch out for: Getting even gathers and making sure the centre front point is precise.

Make again?: Yes! I really enjoyed this pattern.

Overall, you can probably tell, I'm over the moon with this dress. I think the design is super flattering on me and will be great for ladies with a larger bust and hourglass figures. I wore it with my favourite Coffee Seamed Stockings from my shop for a true 1940s look and I think they were meant to be.

To see this dress in action, I wore it in my Sew & Tell | February 2017 video over on my NEW YouTube channel. Please do subscribe!

Thanks for reading, pinups!

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  1. This dress is stunning, you look fab!! The design is lovely and I think the fabric works so well. If I had a special occasion to go to I would give this pattern a try.

  2. So pretty I love that dress. Must remember to track down the pattern.

  3. Well done! It is such a darling dress, and a perfect match for that fabric pattern :) and no mistakes? Congratulations :P

  4. Wow , you look fab , I like this pattern , that neckline is a really nice, congratulations on a lovely make.

  5. This dress looks gorgeous! I love the fabric you used.

  6. Super cute dress! And those polkadots! Swoon!!!

  7. Looks great! I have a fabric in my stash that I would love to use for this pattern, but I am afraid that it will be a bit too light in weight. How tick was your fabric? The shop you mentioned says light/mediumweight.