Spring is for Shirtdresses

So I can’t remember where I first saw McCall’s 6696 but I remember thinking I should make one. When Mary announced she was hosting the fall Spring of 1000 shirtdresses, I was on it like white on rice.

So I FINALLY took blog photos for the #1000shirtdresses @mccallpatterncompany 6696. In summary: excellent pattern but the back gathers are not my thing. Blog link in profile :)

For my first go round I used this sweet floral lawn, originally from Lincraft, which I picked up from eBay in a bulk lot of floral cotton lawns (12 meters for $65! It was fate). I won’t lie, this is some next level Betty Draper red wine and chain smoking stuff. I also won’t lie about how much I love it.


This pattern was a dream to work with. For once I actually followed the instructions (which were great) as it’s full of things I either never or rarely do. The last time I tried to construct a collar it did not go well. Same for the last time I attempted a button-closure. This time they both came out great. There is a lot of hand stitching involved, which worked for me because I love to sit in front of the TV and hand stitch away. If that’s not your thing you could always topstitch.


I sewed a 16D, based on my measurements and it fits pretty much perfectly. There is, however one problem with this dress… THE HUNCHBACK OF DOOM! If you look around at other versions, this seems like a fairly common issue although I think mine looks worse than most. There is just waaaaay to much fabric in those gathers for my liking. I also think the back is too long, which contributes to the bunching right above the waistband. On my next version I’m going to shorten the back and take out some of that excess, which I think will solve the problem just fine. Next time I will also do a full bicep adjustment because I find the sleeves a tiny bit tight. In the meantime, I’ve found that if I want to go sans cardigan tucking the excess fabric in behind a belt works a treat to hide the issue.


All in all, however this dress gets a massive thumbs up!

12 thoughts on “Spring is for Shirtdresses

  1. I love this shape on you, I agree with the gathers in the back… I wasn’t fussed on them & ironed them flat. Perhaps changing this fullness to a box pleat? Or removing some of the fullness?
    I think this is very much your style & I hope you make more!

    • Thanks! Yes apart from the darn gathers it really is perfect. I’m working on another version now, which I took a bunch of the gather fullness out of which seems to have done the trick nicely. I can easily see myself with a wardrobe full of these babies!

  2. Bec, this is my absolute fave make on you! I love it!
    PS Are you interested in coming along to the Canberra Sewing Crew meet up in Feb? We’ve changed our deets so flick me an email if you are. Would love to finally catch up πŸ˜€

    • Thanks so much! I think it’s my fave too, but don’t tell the others, they may get jealous πŸ˜‰
      I’m absolutely interested in coming along to the Canberra Sewing Crew πŸ™‚

  3. Absolutely lovely, Bec! This pattern looks stunning on you and I love the sweet floral lawn that you chose. Count me in for chain-smoking Betty Draper love–that woman can rock a pretty dress! Also, I think I may be the only one who liked the gathers in the back bodice of this dress…probably because they balance out my own bubble butt of doom. πŸ˜‰

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