Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Vintage McCalls 6236 in Floral

Earlier this year I managed to purchase a couple of vintage patterns that were pretty close to my size, which is pretty rare, especially within my budget. One of those was a lovely little 1962 shirtwaister style dress with some gathering details on the bodice, and a gored or slim skirt, in a 41 inch bust.

Vintage McCalls 6236

During one of my local CWA groups handicraft meetings, I decided to take this pattern, a floral sheet from an op shop, as well as some pins and scissors along with me to work on during the meeting. I got it all cut out, adding a little extra room at the side seams as I went, by the end of the meeting, and began construction of it when I got home. I changed the design slightly to be an actual shirtwaister, with the buttons going down a little way past the waist, rather than having a button front bodice with a side zip as well. I sewed together the bodice and skirt pieces, leaving only the facings, collar, hem and buttons/buttonholes left to do, and hung it up in my sewing room while I did more work on my Vintage Suit for the Sew-Along.

Floral Sheet

Once I finished my suit, and another slip, I turned my efforts back to my dress. I put it on over my clothes to check the fit, and realised I had forgotten to shorten the bodice, and so it was much too long. So I simply sewed the waistline seam again, about 1.5 inches in, then chopped off the excess with the overlocker.

Just needing the buttons and hem!

Next up I sewed in the armhole facings, then ironed interfacing on to the collar pieces and sewed them on. Then all I had left to do were the buttons and buttonholes, front seam and the hem, which I finished up within an hour or so of leaving the house. I used some pale pink buttons from my stash that aren't quite a perfect fit, but are close enough for me.

Pink Buttons from a cheap mixed
button jar

I've already worn this dress out 3 times in 4 days, as it is lovely and comfortable. I think I need more vintage styles like this one that are slightly less fitted, for those days when I feel a little bleh.

Selfie with my new Erstwilder brooch

I haven't managed to get any nice full length shots wearing this dress yet, but here are a couple unflattering ones of me wearing it while sitting and learning to spin wool (which I will be posting about soon) I've also since found a nice pink belt on my wardrobe that works well with this dress

Has anyone else made McCall's 6236? How did you like it? Or made any dresses from pretty vintage sheets?


P.S. I am now up to 5 out of my 10 pledged makes for this years Vintage Pattern Pledge, I might just make it!


  1. I tend to shy away from 60s patterns as I prefer the fuller skirts if the 1950s but this one is gorgeous! Beautiful fabric too

    1. I don't often use 60's patterns, but if I can find them close to my size so I don't need to grade them, I will use them. This one's skirt ended up being just full enough to fit comfortably over my large hips.