Saturday, May 03, 2008

Best of the Summer from Butterick, Simplicity, and McCall's

After the horrors of tents on straps (thanks keely for the mental image!) and horrendous jumpers, here's something far more soothing.  The top five patterns (in my book) from Butterick, Simplicity, and McCall's.  Enjoy!

#5 - McCall's 5658

The more I look at this, the more I like it as a great summer party dress set. The inverse pleats at the waist give it shape while being very now, and the different necklines give you the option to make it perfect for a summer wedding (A) or a more formal affair (B).  And C is just right for a casual and cool day dress.  Also, with the sea of sacks this season, it's great to see something that shows a waist!

Plus I just love that shade of blue, especially with gold.  So that might affect my judgment.  Still, neat little dress, neat options, neat job McCall's!

#4 - McCall's 5651

It really doesn't get more basic than this - undies, bras, and slips in simple, easy-to-sew styles.  But what really makes it special is that attitude.  Look at that, it's a DIY Style pattern targeting those in their teens and 20s.  I love that and want to nurture and encourage it as much as I can.  Really, just looking at that pattern makes me think of my two sad slips and want to replace them with knit silk versions.  Maybe with some contrast lace and ... see what it's doing?  It's INSPIRING, just from the envelope.  Now that's something special.  And this is one pattern that won't be out of style in a year or two.  No, we've been quietly wearing all these for a while and they're here to stay.  

Besides, just a few weeks ago someone on PatternReview was complaining about the lack of slip patterns available.  Well, here you go, one new one to add to the drawer!  Thanks, McCall's, and great job showing how a pattern picture (even if it's just line drawings) can be truly inspiring!  And even more for helping the new generation catch the sewing bug.  Great job!

#3 - Butterick 5218

The Big Shirt is back and this is a neat variation on that simple theme.  I really like the placket, the front pleat, the different collars (specifically A), and the sleeves.  The only thing I'm not liking is the length of C but, fortunately, there's three other lengths to choose from.  This style looks great over skinny jeans on those fortunate rectangles who can wear both styles and tucked into a high waisted skirt for us hour glasses.  Made up in a rough cotton it's got the safari look that's in, while made up in something nicer, like silk or a nice cotton, it's perfect for the office and church.  

Similar to this, and a close runner up, is McCall's 
5664.  Again we see the elegant placket that I love.  Does it tell you anything about my button-hole sewing skills that I'd rather do a placket than a row of buttons?  I thought so.

The sleeves are different on this, and different in a good way.  I really like the shorter sleeves and the 3/4 bishop sleeves can be really great, especially as fall creeps up.  The reason I went with the Butterick over this one, though, is the twin problem of the volume and the under bust tie.  On the model it's not bad, though the bow's a little odd.  However I'm not certain how it'll look on others, especially me.  That tie keeps it from being tucked in as a random high-tie plus tuck equals two waist lines.  One is plenty for me, thank you.  And those two style details are so 2008 that they're going to date this pattern long before the Butterick goes out of style.  I might still get the McCall one because I think it has potential but if either become TNTs, I'm pretty certain it'll be the Butterick.  Still, can't go wrong with one more pattern in the drawer!

#2 - Simplicity 2899

Remember on the "Worst Of" list how McCall's completely bombed with their plus sized shirt? Remember me telling them to check out Simplicity's stuff to see how it SHOULD be done? Well, this what I was talking about.   This is a FANTASTIC jacket with more options than you could exaust in a wardrobe of jackets.  Those lines are incredibly flattering, giving waist definition and showing off the legs.  And it's only available in Women's sizes.  That's right, one of this year's hottest jacket patterns and women less than size 18W are missing out.  How's that for a change?  

I love that Simplicity has embraced their Women's line enough to give them great, modern styles made for THEM (not a 16-year-old size 6) rather than throwing them the normal assortment of sacks and sized-up misses stuff that never fits right.  Good for you Simplicity!  

#1 - Butterick 5206
What a fantastic basic wrap dress.  I love it.  Great V-neck (and work-safe with the addition of a camisole), great sleeve options, fantastic obi-belt for showing off the waist, and nice, flattering skirt.  What's not to love?

Sure, it's no show-stopper but that's what makes me think this'll be this year's best little knit dress.  You can make it up in different fabrics with different twists and each one will be fantastic.  I can imagine this in a solid black with a red belt and contrasts, a cute floral with solid contrasts for summer, and a rich olive with black accents for fall.  I need to get this pattern and then get back to sewing knits.  It's been too long and this is just the pattern I need to get started again!

Good job Butterick, you win Best Pattern for Summer 2008!  At least in this competition.  I guess it's even since you also lost ... but we're putting all memories of jumpsuits out of mind and focusing on this lovely dress.  Good job!


Keely said...

If I was a dress person, B5206 would be great. But my favourite is the Simplicity jacket. I'm waiting to see how Debbie Cook's version works out. :)

Anonymous said...

At first I didn't get why a simple slip and undies pattern made #4 on your list. Then I spent some time looking over SB&Mc's websites and good grief there's not much else to get excited about. I did M5667 - the boot cut jeans, and B5221 - the wide leg jeans, but both are high waist and I've heard you whine about how much you hate them. I like them so there. :)

That jacket is fantastic and I can't get upset about missing out (since I'm too lazy to downsize it) since usually we're the ones with great patterns while the Women have to look on with envy. - Kate