Summer stripes – aka seized by the McCalls 6696 zeitgeist


Somehow I missed the memo about McCalls 6696 being the-dress-that-everyone-is-making. All on my own I picked out the pattern and decided to sew myself a pretty shirt dress, thinking I was acting with free will, but obviously I’d somehow been seized by the 6696 zeitgeist, since it only took a quick google before cutting to discover that it’s a huge hit in blogland.


The fabric is some lovely light John Kaldor fabric I picked up at an op shop – $4 for 4 metres. I’ve fully lined the front bodice then just used bias binding on the raw edge of the bodice back below the yoke. The fabric is quite a loose weave and frays easily so I love that every single seam is enclosed and it looks so neat on the inside. And I’m really pleased with the way the stripes have ended up matching up because they’re not actually straight. They’re just slightly irregular, which adds to the charm, but made it tricky! The only other hiccup was my automatic buttonhole stitch decided it objected to doing buttonholes over anything remotely bumpy and wouldn’t play ball. That last photo with me looking at the photographer with my best ‘just take the photo already’ expression, is kind of how I was looking at my sewing machine! I don’t have a 4 step buttonhole on my machine so had to do them manually, which is not my idea of fun when there’s 10 buttonholes. I’ve left the buttonhole off the stand collar since I won’t ever button it and I was well and truly over them by then.

I’ve cut the shoulders away a little as I find it more flattering, and made the dress shorter, but having to decide the length when I it was only part made, I think I accidentally made it just a little too short for the proportions of where the waistband sits. Anyway I wore it today to our work Christmas picnic and it felt lovely and summery at this length so I can live with it. Actually I think I love it, and it looks cute with a short cardi. Black is ok but navy would be perfect so I might just have to buy a navy cardi…

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