Making Butterick 6453 into a Little Black Pinup Dress is easy.
Gertie from New Blog For Better Sewing looks positively glowing on the pattern envelope for Butterick 6453– both versions of the dress look beautiful in printed fabric.
But really, who can resist a little black dress, sewn for a VAVAVOOM pinup look? In addition to the fun floral I made of this pattern’s View A, I knew I needed a dress that would radiate pinup girl 100%, so a black version for View B was in order!
Watch my previous videos in the Gertie B6453 Sew Along:
- Intro to the Gertie B6453 Sew Along!
- Full Bust Adjustment + Fitting Butterick 6453
- Gertie B6453 Sew Along View A, Video!
Fitting the pencil skirt for Butterick 6453 doesn’t have to be a migraine.
To get the ball rolling on fitting Butterick B6453, I kept the process simple.
- Measure the waist seam of the adjusted pattern pieces from the previous fitting video, which by now may be vastly different than the original pattern pieces. Do not include seam allowances.
- Trace off the pattern pieces of the pencil skirt to correspond to your original bodice pattern pieces.
- Sew the skirt muslin.
- Unpick the side seam of the skirt, to see how much more width you will need to add.
- Double check if your natural waist matches the waist of the pattern
- Note: You can see in my video that I’m wearing a ribbon around my natural waist. I’m using it to compare my natural waist against the waist seam of the paper pattern.
- Check if you need to lengthen or shorten.
Once the above steps are completed, you’re ready to roll!
In the video, I went ahead and started off by removing 1″ from the skirt length. I’m 5’2″, and wanted Butterick 6453 to fit me just past the knee.
Then, a simple sway back, which I cover in 1:27 timestamp in the video. Please note that when I did the swayback, I accidentally folded my darts towards the side seam NOT the center– please save yourself the headache and fold the darts in the appropriate direction!
The trickiest part is making sure your skirt darts line up with the bodice darts.
The steps for this process are at timestamp 3:37, where you can watch this all in action.
Essentially the concept of this step is that you want to do a combination of measuring and walking your pattern to make sure all relevant seams line up, as they were designed to do by the pattern designers.
Check bodice distances in the important/relevant seams to make sure they match the skirt darts and seams.
For this particular pinup dress, the skirt darts should match the princess seams at the front. On the back, one of the two skirt darts should match the back bodice dart.
Sound confusing? It’s not! Do one side at a time.
- Measure the waist seam on bodice pieces
- Measure the waist seam on the skirt.
The two steps above are the entire process, really.
Please note that you are measuring your seam in a similar way to walking your pattern (please watch the video for clarification!)– skipping the seam allowances and darts, to get the “real” seam measurement. From there, you can move the skirt dart around at will.
- Square around the dart
- Cut out the dart
- Measure out the appropriate distance
- Retape the dart in place
- Reblend the waist seam
From here, your View B of Butterick B6453 is in the home stretch.
Pin your skirt to the bodice, matching the seams appropriately and continuing with the Gertie sew along instructions for zipper insertion.
On mine, I underlined my black satin crepe to a black polyester georgette, which gave it a good base to work on. Underlining is such a luxe technique, any opportunity to use it is good! I go into more detail about underlining on a previous Little Red Dress post!
A little rayon hem tape makes this pinup black dress come together!
As I said before, luxe details make me happy and can honestly make all the difference. I used hem tape to hem my skirt, which is a nice seam finisher and helps the skirt glide over a slip.
The Gertie Sew Along for me is almost done!
One more video in the Butterick 6453 series is coming your way, where I wrap up my View A dress, as well as share video and photos of this completed View B, black pinup dress.
I can already say that I would absolutely make this pattern again- it was a rewarding project for me like crazy.