Tuesday, September 26, 2023

BarbieCore Butterick 6889

My latest project for the Fabricville blog is just squeaking in to the end of summer dress season. But when I saw this combo I knew I had to try it! The pattern, 6889, is a Retro Butterick 50s release, I've had my eye on it for a while and decided to try it now. There were a few interesting fabric choices in the latest Fabricville options, but when I saw this pink printed cotton I suddenly felt that I absolutely needed to make a BarbieCore vintage inspired dress. 

This is a quilting cotton so doesn't have as much flow as the fabrics that are recommended for this pattern, but I thought I'd give it a go anyway. I do think it turned out well, but in a lighter fabric, the gathers at the waist will fall more lightly that they do in my version. 

I made a few adjustments -- mainly in length, as usual for someone who is barely 5'2"! I found that the bodice of this pattern is quite long, and I ended up taking about 1.25" out above the waist, so that the ties would fall on my waist. I didn't want a lot of blousing, as the pattern image shows that it's pretty sleek. I did end up with some blousing, however, and do find that there is a lot of ease in the bodice, even though I cut it according to my measurements. The neckline fits very well, however, and isn't too constricting, which is something I thought about while cutting this out. I also took about an inch out of the skirt length, and used a 1.5" hem as well. 

The other small alteration I made was to add in a side pocket on the right side (opposite the buttons). I always need a pocket! I think you could add patch pockets as another option, as they would fit quite well into the retro aesthetic. But I just added a side seam pocket, using one of my standard templates. 

I used the required 1/2" shoulder pads as per the pattern, as I felt that they would finish the look, although I didn't cover them with fabric, which was an option, with pattern pieces for that purpose included in the pattern. And I'm quite pleased with the pretty shell buttons that I found at Fabricville to finish this one off! 

As to the pattern itself, I wouldn't recommend this for a beginner. There is a lot of hand sewing to get things secured, and there is also the line of buttons on the side. I do find that I can put it on over my head without undoing any buttons though, so to simplify this project you could easily add buttons to the side band without making any actual buttonholes. The instructions are a bit vague in places; I found them difficult to decipher in the stage of putting the side button bands on (yes, there was unpicking...) I felt like the instructions could have been a bit more expansive, even though the dress itself was fairly simple overall.

So this dress took a little longer to put together than I'd planned but in the end I am happy with my Barbie influenced dress! It's a bit different from my usual style, especially with the close fitting neckline, but it's always fun to try something new.  


  1. lovely dress! I like the high neckline; it suits you

    1. Thanks! It's quite different from my usual styles so that's nice to hear :)

  2. Hi Melanie, Always interesting to try new patterns and new features! The side buttons are certainly different - so that is the opening or is it a feature? I don't think I have ever seen that in a dress. My brain is thinking, 'how I could I use that in a shirt'? Just lovely, as always.
    ... Sara

    1. It is the opening - these are all functional buttons - but I find that with the belt pieces untied (they are sewn into the side placket) this is a huge A-line silhouette and you really don't need to undo the buttons to get this on. So I guess they are both an opening and a feature!


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