Pattern Review: Butterick 6446 Dress

Wow, it’s been over a month since I posted something about actually sewing. I’ve been busy, just not with making too much. But I have been slowly working on this dress, from muslin to finished project. This will probably be long, so settle in…

Pattern Description: Fitted-through-the-bodice dresses have lined bodice and sleeve/skirt/length variations. B, C: Sash

I made View B, the sleeveless tea-length version with a sash.

Sizing: 6-22. I made a 12, tapering to a 14.

Available as a PDF? Not from what I can tell.

Fabric Used: Milly silk twill from Gorgeous Fabrics. That fabric is sold out but You Can See Similar Here. For the lining, I used White Silk Habotai.

Machines and Tools Used: Pfaff 2030 sewing machine, Reliable Iron and board, ham and holder.

Needle/Notions Used: Universal 75/11 needle, hand sewing needle, cotton basting thread, beeswax (for hand sewing thread), thread, zipper from stash, hook/eye

Tips Used during Construction: Make the Lining First, Sew from Wide to Narrow, Construct from the Inside Out, and of course, Anything by the Pressinatrix.

Did it look like the photo or drawing when you got through? Yes

How were the instructions? They were good.

Construction Notes: First I made a straight muslin, then I lowered the bust dart and did an FBA (kind of a cheat, in that I added an inch to the bodice CF length and started at 12 at the shoulder and armhole, but cut to the 14 at the side seam.

Front with FBA adjustments
Under Front/lining with adjustments.


I incorporated a back dart by angling the CB at from the shoulder blade level to the neckline.

One of the standards from RTW that I incorporated was trimming the neckline/lining seam allowance to to ¼ inch.

After under stitching and turning/pressing the neckline.

I decided to line the entire dress (the pattern only called for lining the bodice). I used the view A skirt for the lining (it’s not pleated) and I lengthened it to 2 inches shorter than the outer skirt.

I basted the lining to the outer skirt at the waistline, and attached both to the bodice, finishing the waistline seam with a bias cut binding of soft organza (also sold out, sorry, but oh man it feels nice).

Now, adding a lining presented some construction quandaries, so I decided to use a hand inserted zipper, a la Susan Khalje’s excellent method from Threads Magazine. Alas, my hand sewing skills are rusty, so the tension was all sorts of bad.

So this morning I woke up, undid the hand stitching (which was a major pain in the butt, but worth it), and redid it on the sewing machine.

So much better!

Lastly, I added some thread chains (made on my serger) to hold the sash at the sides.


Likes/Dislikes: This is a pretty pattern that appeals to the girly girl in me. No real dislikes – it goes together quite easily.

Would you do it again? Would you recommend it? Yes to both.

Conclusion: Lovely pattern, goes together easily. IF it ever warms up here in Boston I’ll get a picture of me in it. In the meantime, here are shots on Shelley:



Here’s hoping we eventually get warm enough weather that I can wear this.

Happy sewing!


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Gorgeous Fabrics

I own an online fabric store, The name says it all!

13 thoughts on “Pattern Review: Butterick 6446 Dress”

  1. Love this so much! I just bought this pattern and fingers crossed (and after I complete my two daughter’s dresses which are ahead in the queue ) will have a new dress for Easter. Thanks for you guidance on lining the skirt! Again, absolutely gorgeous dress!

  2. Lovely — and very spring. Hope you get spring soon! I’ve found the Susan Khalje zipper insertion looks more flawless with some fabrics than others. I still like my machine inserted invisibles, but the hand picked lapped zipper for a side seam is quickly becoming a favorite.

    Still working on my white 3 ply silk blouse – I went vintage, and the pattern was very small, so I spent a quite a bit of time in the muslin stage with the fit. The fabric is sumptuous and so easy to work with! (And I finally blogged the Rucci suit, the lining and blouse were GF, but the fashion fabric was elsewhere.)

  3. That silk twill must feel like a gentle cloud on the skin. Gutsy print makes it chic instead of saccharine. And the cut has good coverage in front, in spite of the surplice. A winner. Nice work there! Wish I’d had the guts to buy & wrangle that silk.

  4. I have that fabric! I just found it in my stash on the weekend. I had no idea what I was going to do with it – I don’t have enough for a dress like yours – but it has been very inspiring. I think it calls for something structured because the pattern of the fabric is so strong. Loving the dress.

    1. Please don’t advertise your website on my blog. That’s not cricket.
      But thank you for the kind words!

  5. Just made this dress in a patterned poplin with a plain cotton lawn lining just in the bodice. I like your version too. I’ll make it again but next time without the pockets. As much as I love pockets, the skirt sits slightly better and it’s tidier and quicker without them. One design flaw is that the dress is hard to get on as the zipper doesn’t go through the waist of the dress. The waist is hard to get past shoulders and bust when putting the dress on (and no one with hips could step into it), but admittedly it makes for a nice fit at the waist so that the sash is .optional

    1. Sorry for the delay in answering – I’ve been away.
      Steph, I’m not sure what you mean by “the zipper doesn’t go through the waist of the dress.” The pattern calls for a 22 inch zipper, and it extends about 7 inches below the waistline.

  6. I need some advice please. My daughter wanted a simple wedding dress and we have scoured the books for a pattern. We love Butterick 6446 and are wondering if it would work to make this with a very fine lace over a satin

    1. Hi Michelle
      Yes, I think this could work quite well with a lace over satin. I would use the satin as an underlining on the bodice, because of the pleating, and let it float free of the satin in the skirt, using a french seam or appliqué seam finish on the lace to give it a couture finish.

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