Big Four 2018 spring patterns – Vogue, Butterick and more

Hi, I spent some time looking at Big Four 2018 spring patterns – Vogue, Butterick, McCall’s and Simplicity. They were the pattern companies I grew up with. (Last fall I blogged about a few patterns from Simplicity and Vogue, which you can read here.)

My mom mostly bought patterns from Butterick, McCalls and Simplicity from Jo-Ann – back when the chain only sold fabric and it was known as Jo-Ann Fabrics. She made clothes for me and my three sisters when we were growing up.

I don’t recall her ever buying any Vogue patterns. I’m not sure why she didn’t buy Vogue but it’s most likely because those patterns were more expensive and some are complicated to sew. She mostly sewed by following the pictures in the instructions. English is her second language so she didn’t bother reading the instructions.

Here are a few of the spring patterns that caught my eye.

Big four 2018 Spring Patterns

They are listed in no particular order.

Vogue

Big Four 2018 Sewing patterns - Vogue V9299 - top with belt - CSews.com

I love stripes so this shirt (V9299) grabbed my attention for its fun use of stripes. Plus I like the waist-defining belt. I don’t know about the puffiness of the lower part of the sleeve but that could certainly be toned down.

The pattern has many variations in length and sleeve styles. You could lengthen it to make a shirt dress.

Big four 2018 Spring Patterns - Vogue V9299 - tops with sleeve and length variations - CSews.com

This Vintage Vogue reissue  (V9295) is from the 1940s. I love the neckline, which has front tucks.

Big Four 2018 Spring Patterns - Vintage Vogue pattern V9295 - ca. 1940 - CSews.com

Look at those tucks and lovely neckline!

Big Four 2018 Spring Patterns - Vintage Vogue reissue V9295 - 1940s dress with tucks

The pattern envelope says the suggested fabrics are: sheer cottons, lace, crepe de chine, burnout velvet and rayon challis. You need lightweight fabrics because of all the tucks, which are also in the short-sleeve version.

Big Four 2018 Spring Patterns - Vintage Vogue reissue 1940s - line drawing - CSews.com

Here’s one of Sandra Betzina’s latest patterns. It’s described as a pants pattern. This is version A, which is described as having “wide straps give jumper effect.”

Big Four 2018 Spring Patterns - Today's Fit by Sandra Betzina Vogue pattern V1580 - pants - CSews.com

Sandra designs for ease of wear so I’m sure you can easily take down the straps so you can go to the bathroom. I like jumpsuits but I’m usually reluctant to make them because you have to get half undressed to go to the bathroom. And you need to be careful that the top part doesn’t drag on the floor, especially in a public restroom.

Big Four 2018 Spring Patterns - Today's Fit by Sandra Betzina Vogue pattern V1580 - line art - CSews.com

If you ever have an opportunity to hear Sandra speak, take it. She has great sewing tips and delivers them with a great sense of humor. Plus she has such a warm personality. I heard her speak at Cañada College last spring at their annual Artistry in Fashion event. I also got a copy of the latest edition of her indispensable fabric guide – All New Fabric Savvy (affiliate link here).

Simplicity

Big Four 2018 Spring Patterns - Simplicity 8605 paper-bag waist pants pattern

I like the paper-bag waist on pants and skirts. These pants look fun and easy to make. Plus the pattern (8605) includes a skirt! I’ve been wanting to make a casual paper-bag skirt.

Big Four 2018 Spring Patterns - Simplicity 8605 - paper bag waist skirt and pants pattern - CSews.com

I’ve tied RTW shirts that buttoned in the front. I like that look. This Simplicity pattern (8601) for woven fabrics gives you the option of just letting the front piece hang down or tying it in a knot. I like the striped version.

Big Four 2018 Spring Patterns - Simplicity 8601 - front-tie top pattern - CSews.com

One thing that really jumped out for me as I perused Simplicity’s offerings is that there is a lot of diversity among its models. For example, this vintage 1950s reissue (8592) features a plus-size model and an African-American model. There are two size ranges – 10-18 and 20W-28W. Kudos to Simplicity for making such a wide range of sizes available.

Big Four 2018 Spring Patterns - Vintage Simplicity - 8592 - dress - CSews

New Look is part of the Simplicity group of patterns and this flight jacket pattern (6545) jumped out at me because it features an Asian model and it’s a fun pattern.

Big Four 2018 Spring Patterns - New Look 6545 - flight jacket pattern - CSews.com

 

McCall’s

I like the pleats in this McCall’s dress designed by Phoebe Couture. I initially saw it as a top and a skirt but it’s a dress. I think you could add a waistband and just make a skirt from this pattern.

Big Four 2018 Spring Patterns - McCall's M7720 - Phoebe Couture dress pattern - CSews.com

This is a pattern for a costume (M7733) but I’d just wear it as a regular jacket.

Big Four 2018 Spring Patterns - McCall's costume M7733 - fitted jacket by Yaya Han - CSews.com

 

Butterick

The drawstring detail on this Butterick dress is nice (B6552).

Big Four 2018 Spring Patterns - B6552-Butterick dress pattern with lace-up front

I’m not thrilled by the color-blocked version of this pattern (B6567) that the model is wearing but I do like the lines, which you can see in version B, which has longer sleeves. You could shorten it to make it more of a tunic or lengthen it to midi-length, which is my favorite skirt length.

Big Four 2018 Spring Patterns - Butterick B6567 Lisette dress - CSewscom

 

This pattern (B6556) by Gertie has a lovely square neckline.

Big Four 2018 Spring Patterns - Butterick B6556 - Patterns by Gertie - CSews.com

And that’s the end of my roundup. Have you seen any new Big Four 2018 spring patterns that you like?

Big Four sewing patterns – a look at spring possibilities

Hi! I’ve been pinning a lot of early spring fashion photos on my @csews Pinterest board “Sewing Inspiration.” Then I waited to see what was in store for Big Four sewing patterns – the Big Four being Butterick, McCalls, Simplicity and Vogue. I meant to post about it last week but went off-topic and wrote about the Statue of Liberty instead.

Here’s a look at what I discovered, what I liked, what patterns reminded me of some indie pattern designs, and what stuck out. They aren’t in any particular order except by pattern company name.

Butterick

I picked out these four Butterick patterns: This wrap dress (B6446) with three lengths and a sleeve variation looks easy to make and comfortable to wear. This midi-version is my favorite length.

Butterick - B6446 - sewing pattern - Misses' Pleated Wrap Dresses with Sash

Here’s Gertie’s latest sewing pattern (B6453) with two skirt variations. I think I would change the gathered skirt to inverted pleats, like one of my Chardon skirts. Gathering can get bulky.

Butterick B6453 - Patterns by Gertie - Misses' Princess Seam Dresses with Straight or Gathered Skirt

I picked this Butterick blouse (B6455) as an example of impractical sleeves. You can’t wear it while cooking and if you’re eating, you definitely have to hold your sleeve out of the way when you reach for anything. But this pattern does have three additional sleeve variations – two are shorter and another has the sleeve gathered at the wrist – so no dipping danger.

Butterick B6455 - sewing pattern - Misses' Gathered, Raglan Sleeve Tops

I made a knit top several years ago that had lovely bell sleeves. I just loved the way they looked but then hardly ever wear it because the sleeve just gets in the way.

I like this top (B6458) because of all the color blocking possibilities. Five pieces make up the top part of the bust area. I like the extra ease in the front pleats. There’s also a more fitted variation and a sleeveless version.

Butterick B6458 - sewing patterns - Misses pullover, paneled tops

Five McCalls Patterns

This knit dress (M7538) is fun and has plenty of color-blocking opportunities, too. You can do a lot with the crisscrossing band in the middle.

McCalls - M7538 - sewing pattern - Misses' Crossover-Band Top and Dresses

I’m not usually a fan of jumpsuits but this pattern (M7539) intrigued me, plus there’s a dress and a romper variation. The main issue I have with jumpsuits is clothing management when you go to the bathroom. You have to get half-undressed.

McCalls M7539 - sewing pattern - Misses' Dresses, Romper and Belted Jumpsuit with Collar and Pocket Variations

I’ve always been secretly attracted to the off-the-shoulder look but never worn anything like this Big Four sewing pattern (M7543). I think as a young girl, I thought it was the height of sophistication – baring the shoulders just seemed so adult. Now I look at it and wonder how tight the elastic would be to ensure that it didn’t fall off.

McCalls - M7543 - sewing pattern - Misses' Off-the-Shoulder Tops, Tunic and Dress

I like the use of lace in this sewing pattern (M7544) but I don’t know how this style would look on me. I have broad shoulders and maybe all that gathering at the top would make me look like a big puffer ball, even with my small bust. There are also two pleated variations.

This dress (M7535) reminded me of the Lady Skater Dress by Kitschy Koo but without the princess seams. I have the Skater Dress pattern but haven’t made it yet. I first saw the pattern when Katie of Kadiddlehopper made a lovely Lady Skater and blogged about it here in 2013.

McCalls M7535 - sewing pattern - Misses'/Miss Petite Fit and Flare Dresses

Simplicity

The sleeves on this dress (8292) are a bit much and remind me of the Flutter blouse and tunic by Papercut Patterns but with less full sleeves. I made a muslin of the Flutter blouse a while ago but it needs more ease in the shoulders. I really liked this version of the Flutter tunic by Sew Busy Lizzie, which is why I got the pattern. But I won’t be getting this Simplicity pattern.

Simplicity Pattern 8292 Misses'/Miss Petite Dresses

This easy pattern (8299) has skirt and pant variations. There’s an elastic waist, which has its benefits. I need more casual pants so I’ve been looking at a lot of pant patterns.

Simplicity Pattern 8299 Misses' Skirts or Pants in Various Lengths

Version C of this Big Four sewing pattern (8300) reminded me of the Sew DIY’s Nita Wrap Skirt. (I was a pattern tester for Sew DIY. You can see my version here.) It’s cute but too short for me. I’m just not comfortable showing that much leg. 😉

Simplicity Pattern 8300 Misses' Skirts with Front Variations

Here’s a fun overall dress and knit top (8301) by Mimi G, the founder of fashion, lifestyle and sewing blog Mimi G Style. I first heard about her last month when Abby Glassenberg interviewed Mimi G for her While She Naps podcast. Then Mimi just seemed to be popping up everywhere – Simplicity and then I saw that she also organizes a three-day Fashion Sewing Conference (!) in Los Angeles, which will be taking place June 16 to 18 this year. She has more than 200,000 followers on Instagram (@mimgstyle). Wow.

Simplicity Pattern 8301 Mimi G Style Misses' Overalls and Knit Crop Top

This shirt (8297) appealed to me because it has quite a few variations. I’m not sure I like the peplum in stripes because they’re not cut on the bias. I think it would look better in a solid or nondirectional fabric.

Simplicity Pattern 8297 Misses' Shirts

Vogue

Color blocking appeals to me because you can make the same dress in many variations. You can play around with colors and patterns. This knit dress (V9240) has many possibilities.

Vogue V9240 - sewing pattern - Misses' Knit Paneled Dresses

I like all the elements of this Five Easy Pieces pattern (V9246) set (jackets, belt, top, pants).

Vogue Patterns - V9246 - sewing pattern - MISSES' DROP-SHOULDER JACKETS, BELT, TOP WITH YOKES, AND PULL-ON PANTS

Here’s another jumpsuit (V9245). This pattern also has a sleeveless variation. I don’t like this fabric but I like the wide-leg pants and sash.

Vogue V9245 - sewing pattern - Misses/Misses Petite Button-up Jumpsuits and Sash

I include this Big Four sewing pattern (V9243) because the sleeves kill me. Did someone think more is better? There are other sleeve variations but I don’t think they are an improvement.

Vogue V9243 - sewing pattern - Misses' Princess Seam Tops with Flared Sleeve Variations

Here’s the line drawing for all the versions.

V9243 - line drawing

And that’s it for my brief look at spring Big Four sewing patterns. Have you seen any new patterns that you like?

Big Four sewing patterns - spring 2017 - Butterick B6458, McCalls M7538, Simplicity 8299

Sewing patterns, sewing queues and sewing projects

I buy sewing patterns in spurts. They tend to be impulse buys or maybe it’s a pattern I’ve been eyeing for a while but haven’t decided if I really want to get it. And then I see an email about a sale so I buy it. Or it’s a pattern I’ve seen on someone’s Instagram feed. If it’s sold out or out of print (OOP), I go to eBay or Etsy to hunt it down.

Here are some of the sewing patterns I’ve either purchased or have been generously gifted to me since the summer. I’ve listed them roughly in reverse chronological order – the most recent additions to my pattern collection appearing first. (Please excuse the bad photos. They are rather blurry and dark.)

I got this Kwik Sew patttern to make a cardigan for my husband – a birthday present for him. You can read more about why I picked this pattern here. I haven’t sewn any Kwik Sew patterns yet. I like that the paper is white and printed in color. It’s nice to have the sizes in different colors. I bought this pattern on eBay for $10.25 because it’s OOP. It’s uncut and like new. Apparently newer Kwik Sew patterns are on tissue paper. Darn. So if you have look for OOP patterns to get the white paper.

Kwik Sew men's cardigan sewing pattern 3724

Last week, the McCall’s pattern company had a sewing patterns sale on nearly all of its patterns. Kwik Sew, Butterick and get any simpler than pants with an elastic waist! I like the wide legs on these pants. And then I saw this vintage reissue, which I had noticed several weeks ago when I was looking at vintage patterns. I just love how it wraps around the waist. So I got these three Butterick patterns.

Butterick sewing patterns - B6318 Vintage reissue dress '61 - B6392 - Misses' Wrap - B5983 shorts and pants

In September, during #bpSewvember –  Bimble and Pimble‘s Instagram photo challenge, @sownbrooklyn posted this image of two vintage hat patterns that she got as part of a Craiglist haul. (She blogs at Sown Brooklyn.) And I commented that I loved the pattern on the right. And guess what? She offered to send it to me! I was thrilled to accept and got the pattern a few days later. The hats look like something Audrey Hepburn would have worn.  Thank you, Wanett!

Vintage Vogue hat patterns

Just a few months earlier a lovely Bay Area Sewists member gave me the vintage 1959 McCalls sewing pattern below. I love both versions of this dress – a full skirt and the sleek sheath. Here are both patterns.

Vintage Vogue 6411 hat sewing pattern, vintage McCalls 5056 sewing pattern

I’ve become a little obsessed with pants (trouser) sewing patterns. I really need some new pants because most of mine are a little too tight because I’ve gained weight over the past year. Plus my favorite pair of trouser jeans are too worn out to wear in public any longer. I may try to copy those but in the meantime, I bought some medium-weight denim when I was in New York in August and a couple of months later I got this Butterick pattern B5682. I want to make the trouser version.

Butterick sewing pattern B5682 - jeans and trousers

And last, but certainly not least, are the indie patterns I’ve purchased over the past several months I first saw Deer and Doe’s Fumeterre skirt on Libby, an Aussie sewist who I first “met” on Instagram. When she came to San Francisco in May for a work conference, we went to Britex Fabrics and she wore this skirt. I loved her version. I got the pattern at Stonemountain & Daughter Fabrics in Berkeley, which carries more than 40 indie pattern lines in their brick-and-mortar and online store. Here’s a link to the online pattern store.

I also got the Sew House Seven Toaster Sweater pattern at Stonemountain. I got some wool double-knit fabric to make Version One of the Toaster Sweater. I saw a few versions on Instagram and had to buy it.

Indie sewing patterns - Deer and Doe, Christine Haynes and Sew House Seven

I’m a longtime fan of Christine Haynes. I bought her first book Chic & Simple Sewing and made quite a few garments from it. I even interviewed her on my blog back in 2012, back when she only had a couple of sewing patterns out. You can read the interview here.

So that about sums up most of the patterns I’ve bought over the past six months. I think this will keep me busy for 2017! I’ve got a rather long sewing queue now, not to mention other sewing projects that are underway. I’m not a speedy sewist because I only have time to work on things a little bit at a time. But my main priorities are trousers and tops, which I why I’m really enamored with the Toaster Sweater. However, I may make the Butterick dress for the Bay Area Sewists Frocktails event in February.

What are your sewing plans for the new year?

Bemberg Lining for a Skirt

B5756
Butterick B5756

I’m making a skirt using this Butterick pattern (B5756), which I got a while ago. I like skirts with a yoke. I’m making version C (the green skirt pictured, at right, on the pattern illustration) but a couple inches longer because I like a mid-calf length. My fabric is a cotton voile, which I got at Britex Fabrics in San Francisco – on one of its rare sale days last year. I knew I wanted some Bemberg lining, which is breathable and anti-static. (To read more about why it makes such an excellent lining check out Bemberg-the King of Linings at Tailor on Ten.)

Earlier this week, I took a break from work and popped into Britex to choose a skirt lining color. (Lucky me – I can walk from my office to Britex in about 12 minutes.) I left my swatch at home but I had a photo of the fabric on my phone – granted the colors wouldn’t be exact but hey, it’s a lining color.

Family fabric

I told the salesperson that I was thinking of going with a light yellow to match the background color of my fashion fabric, this cotton voile, which has an Art Deco look to it. (If you look closely you can see a family there. The darker blue is the hair of the parents.)

But he told me that a lighter color would just wash out the colors. I asked him what color he would recommend and he said he’d go with the darkest color – the blue.

“Would that affect the the colors – like make the yellow look green?” I asked.

“No, I’ve done this before,” he said. “It won’t affect the color. Besides you don’t want a light color because it’ll get dirty.”

All excellent points, eh? I’ve only lined a few things: a wool jacket, some vests, and hats – and all those things were with medium-weight fabric, not a lightweight fabric like voile.

So then I thought, OK if I go with a darker color, then how about red? So he pulled out a couple reds, one was more orangey so we rejected that. Then he cut some swatches, which I then took home with me.

Here are the swatches, which Britex staples to a nice card.

Swatches

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And here’s what the fabric looks like with this white fabric behind it. It does seem a little washed out.

Fabric against white (2)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here it is with blue against it:

Fabric against blue (2)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And here it is with the red.

Fabric against red (2)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m leaning towards the red. Which color would you pick to line this skirt? Blue or red?