Pattern Love

on January 8 | in Sewing Inspiration | by | with 52 Comments

Tell us about your favorite clothing pattern of the moment! We’re looking for your pictures and reviews about indie/Etsy patterns (not tutorials, but actual patterns) and patterns from the big guys (Is your recent wardrobe Built-by-Wendy? Is there a great McCalls design in your closet?).

spacer Comment below and direct us to pattern-talk on your blog post or Flickr site, OR email us with details and/or a pic:

Subject: Patterns

We’ll feature some of your favorite patterns and reviews in upcoming posts. We especially love to hear about what works for you and why, modifications you’ve made and we like to see the final result!

Here are the patterns in our shop, and be sure to check out Patterns… Demystified! if you’re just venturing into the wonderful world of clothing patterns. That’s the ubiquitous (and fabulous) Built-By-Wendy 3835 up there!

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52 Responses to Pattern Love

  1. Bobbi says:

    My favorite patters are from Fashion by Connie. I wear a size 24 and her patterns fit without altering. It is just great. Many of the patters from the big 3 are graded up from a small size. The shoulders end up too wide. They don’t account for the rounding of the back and arms that happens with round women. I have used Connie’s patters for over 10 years. I just make them over & over again. I am not sewing for myself right now. I am making my niece’s wedding gown and blogging about it

  2. Liz says:

    If you’re still taking comments on this I just posted a review on my blog for simplicity 3881

  3. Liz says:

    I’ve made this dress a few times for my daughter: (pattern)
    as seen on my blog:

    This Bolero Jacket is different and fun. Very easy to make. (I want one for myself!):

    My friend who I share a blog with made this:
    great thing about Burday patterns is that they are free or way cheap – $3

  4. Linden Coyne says:

    I just found this site and am new to sewing but I am in love with the “wonder jacket” that Juliana posted pictures of. Is there any way to find out where the pattern came from??

  5. supa says:

    Thanks for the Ottobre info, Jean Marie! I have a skinny 4yo boy, too. And I’d much rather go by cm then shaving two inches off the sides of a “size S”.

  6. Tara Boos says:

    I really love that dress pictured above! I would love to get into clothing, i even have an overlocker, not that you neeed one but i would love to actually use it more, although the chopping part scares me. so yeah for getting me started!.

  7. Erin says:

    i love the “built by you” patterns by wendy mullin. and i have also had much success (and compliments) with simplicity 3887.

  8. Deb says:

    My “desert island” pattern — — Sarouelles. I make the ones in the middle, the African pants…. love, love, love these. I wear them almost ALL the time. When it’s cold, I wear thermals under them = } The most comfortable thing in the world to wear. If you’re feeling daring, use different fabrics for each leg, or even patchwork fabric. I also make them for hubby for jammies.

  9. Amanda says:

    I love the Jacki Clark britches & Bloomers pattern and just finished the babydoll top. I am also a big fan of the portobello pixie patterns. I teach sewing classes and these have definitely been my big hits!

  10. alice says:

    OOps.. here’s the public link.

  11. alice says:

    This is my daughter’s favorite thing to wear. If she could wear it every day she would. It’s the Kaiya Eve Pettiskirt featured on Martha Stewart. Not the easiest thing to sew but would have been so much easier with a ruffler foot.

  12. Heels says:

    For my 8 yr old daughter, the Children’s Corner Sara’s Skort pattern. Easy, fun, super cute–so far, my daughter likes the blue/white seersucker lined in bright grass green kona cotton best. For my son, the plainest, simplest Kwik Sew pants pattern. I think my tiny 3 yr old boy has a dozen pairs of great pants now. For myself, the self-drawn skirt pattern that I used to make a silk skirt to wear to a ball on NYE. I need to tweak the pattern and make it a little smaller, tho. Too big!

  13. Jean Marie says:

    I like the Ottobre Design patterns – I have a skinny 4 yr. old boy, and being able to trace off the correct waist/hips (close to a 68) and length (110) plus the neat designs is fabulous – much easier than altering to remove the extra! And the pieces fit together almost perfectly (my tracing isn’t always accurate!).

    For me, I like some of the Ottobre Women designs for t-shirts and blouses; I’m working up the courage to tackle pants from them. I also have a couple of Simplicity’s patterns with fronts already adjusted for different cup sizes – which require much less tweaking to get a reasonable fit for me.

    (Ottobre I usually get from but it can also be found on eBay or at; Simplicity from Joann Fabrics when they are having a good pattern sale)

  14. Sonicka says:

    I have used the “Madeline Dress” ( ) from the etsy store The Handmade Dress ( ). It is wonderful! Very easy to use, and only 2 “joins” in the pattern. I made the size 7 for my daughter and the size 1 for my niece. I used a vintage linen napkin for the apron on my daughters, and it is so cute!

  15. Pamela says:

    I discovered Butterick’s 4684. It is a “Fast & Easy” pattern. It has 6 different “possible” styles. I use bold, colorful Bali prints. The shirts look great! And the style is soooo comfy.

  16. supa says:

    I’d also really like to try to some Japanese sewing books, as Cecile mentioned — and where’s a good place to get started on Ottobre?

  17. supa says:

    I love Wendy Mullins Built By You line of patterns (through Simplicity) and her Sew U books. I’ve altered them for maternity and made them the regular way, too. They are a great starting off point.

    maternity dress:
    regular skirt:

    I also love Simplicity 3887:

    Loving all the kids pattern suggestions here. Sewing for my boys is next on my list.

  18. Sewnewbie says:

    Great topic, can wait to use some of these ideas. Thanks.

  19. Lisa says:

    I like this Kwik Sew shirt pattern for little boys:
    I’ve used it to make holiday shirts for my 4-year-old son; the Halloween shirt turned out especially cute. I’m going to make him one with monster trucks on it for his upcoming birthday; we’re having a monster truck-themed party. Will do one for Valentine’s Day, too.

  20. Kristin says:

    For girls, my two favs are the “Round Neck Top/Dress” by that darn kat and “Miss Madeline” by The Handmade Dress:
    I love the Emmeline Apron pattern. I’ve made 2 with another one planned.
    I made Butterick 6030 for the first time and it turned out really cute.
    I do plan on making it a bit trimmer around the hips next time. I’ve heard great things about the shirt included in that pattern also.

    Love this thread! I’m always looking for pattern ideas.

  21. monica says:

    I looooove the Sweet little dress pattern from Leila and Ben, it’s easy and super cute.
    you can see it in action here

  22. Jiill says:

    What about patterns for boys? I love to sew and will have a grandson in May so I’m looking for baby and toddler boy patterns. Any good ones out there?

  23. Water Works says:

    I will be watching the comments and resulting post on this topic. I am desparate for a decent fitting pants pattern for little girls. If the legs are just the right amount of drape/ taper, then the crotch and waist are not quite right…if the upper portion of the pants fit great, the bottom’s a bit to boot leg for a small child. Ahhhh, the perfect child’s pants. Is that too much to wish for…..

  24. Jamie says:

    Oh yes! Pink Fig Girly Skirt – easy peasy and so cute! Also about to attempt this pinnafore from grainandgusset on Etsy

  25. Beth PRince says:

    This is SO HELPFUL! I am a novice sewer, teaching myself with the help of the blogosphere and a few good books (thank you Diana Rupp!), but I have been having a terrible time choosing patterns. I look forward to reading the rest of the comments!

  26. becky says:

    i tried a crochet wrist warmer that i just loved!! was the post AND a super easy fleece slipper pattern for the kids.
    i am off to check everyone else’s stuff.

  27. sara says:

    I must have that dress pattern on the top of the page anyone know which pattern it is?
    My favorite new patterns are longies from and rita’s rump pocket (got diapers on the brain) just got the jackie clark sweetest little dress pattern from sew mama on monday can’t wait to try it

  28. v and co says:

    amy butler’s barcelona skirt is my all time favorite for adults and well *blush* i made a really cute skirt for my little one using a bandanna. here’s the link:

  29. Kate says:

    In September I made my first little girl dress… it turned out great! It is a very versatile pattern that is sold on Etsy by thatdarncat. It can be worn alone, with a short-sleeve shirt under it or a long one. I will definitely be making it again! It has also inspired me to do more clothes for my girls and I have stocked up on lots of patterns to try. Pictures and links to the pattern on my blog at:

  30. That’s easy!
    Oliver + S 2+2 blouse and pleater skirt pattern.
    Cute! Cute! Cute!

  31. Ingrid says:

    I love anything from the Ottobre magazines – the Rose dress was my most recent project, from 02/08.

  32. Bean Paulson says:

    I love the Sew baby! twirly dress pattern:

    I’ve made it in several different sizes (2T through size 6 from the same pattern!) over the years, with long and short sleeves. My daughter loves every dress I’ve made from the pattern, and I’m bummed that she’s finally grown up to the largest size already so we won’t get to use it again for much longer 🙁

  33. kerri says:

    Another vote for the Barcelona skirt! I don’t think I’ve seen anyone displeased with it yet, beginners or advanced. Butterick 4985 has been shirt pattern that gets me the most compliments.

  34. Roseanne says:

    My favorite pattern of the moment is this pinafore I found at You Can Make
    I’ve made five so far, two where Christmas present, the rest are for my little girl.
    It is cute as a dress, and without the ruffle it is a nice length for a smock top with pants or leggings.
    I like because the patterns come a e-books. Just download, print, and tart sewing!
    Check out a few pictures on my blog!

  35. april says:

    I love the Amy Butler Anna Tunic pattern– I’ve made the cami and tunic lengths, and just picked up some amazing peacock-esque fabric to make the dress length for summer. It’s such an easy shape to wear, quick to sew, and I love the yoke design.

  36. Karen Park says:

    My favorite skirt pattern is a Simplicity retro one~the skirt in Simplicity 4044. I blogged about it here in December:

    I love it! Looking forward to your go-to patterns as well~

  37. Andrea says:

    I’ve used the Burda Style 9678 pattern to make pants for my daughter twice with great results! They take a couple hours total and turn out much cuter than the pattern picture. Both pair were corduroy. One pair had elastic in the side seam of the leg and the other didn’t. Both were cute.

  38. Michelle says:

    For little girlie clothes, my vote is 100% for Portabellopixie! I’ve never purchased a pattern that was so well written or illustrated. Very, very clear full color instructions, and I learned three new techniques! (DIY bias tape, shirring, and easy ruffling.)

  39. claudia says:

    I really like the tunic from the book “downtownDIY Sewing: 14 Easy Designs for City Girls with Style”. The cowl neck is fun and the sleeves fit nicely; neither is very complicated. You can adjust the pattern and leave out the pleat (which I did with ease but my fabric selection was a disaster!!!) and come up with a few other ways to change it up. You can see my finished tunic, which I really love because of the fabric, on my blog,

    This is a good book for intermediate “sewists” and has some very cute patterns! I’m all set to sew up the summer blouse!

  40. alison says:

    I’m really looking forward to hearing about people’s favorite patterns!

    I’ve really enjoyed sewing with the Pink Fig patterns. Links to pics…
    Olivia top:
    Lily top:
    Bella pants:

    And I LOVED my first Oliver & S pattern, the swingset tunic: I can’t wait to make more of her patterns!

  41. Amber says:

    My favorite patterns right now have to be Sandi Henderson’s:

    They are so easy to follow and just so cute too.
    I’ve made my girls dresses and pants and some for a craft fair too.

  42. Steph W says:

    Here’s a skirt pattern that I just used, and I loved it!

  43. Marie says:

    This is a great idea! I can’t wait to see all the fabulous suggestions that people give. I don’t have any fab faves at the moment, because I haven’t been doing much clothes sewing as of late, but I am really excited to see the ideas that others share. With spring just around the corner (I say that wishfully), I am thinking that making a few spring dresses would be lovely!

  44. Dayna Smith says:

    I am a big fan of the book Sew What Skirts. There are many patterns and styles to choose from in the book. The best part is that you plug in your measurements to end up with a custom fitting piece. I think the circle skirt is my favorite so far. Here is a link to my post about the book and the two skirts I made from here.

    I also used what I learned from the circle skirt to make the skirt on this dress for my daughter this Halloween:

    Only trouble being that we wanted the sparkly overlay and I neglected to cut that as a circle skirt so it squished the full spinning goodness down below oppps – learning!

  45. Cecile says:

    I’m using a lot of patterns from Japanese sewing books, at the moment… and since more than one year now. I love the fact that they are very well explained… with drawings. I don’t read Japanese, not even a little. My favorite books are, for myself:
    for my children:
    but I have a lot, actually, and I love them all.
    I’m also using patterns from the French Citronille (, they are very cute and easy to customize.

  46. Lauren says:

    Cute Dress!!

  47. Juliana says:

    here are links to pictures:

    Oh, and also the sof soled baby shoe patterns from stardust shoes here:

    and the same pattern from which I have in toddler sizes here:

  48. Juliana says:

    My favorite childrens pattern righ now is the wonder jacket pattern from sew baby. I love i because the body of the jacket (front back sides and collar) are one piece! with sleeves that makes 3 pieces total and the seaming is easy. Its also a geat jacket to make reversible and easy to exchange fabrics for all seasons. Love love love it. i’ve made four in the past couple months. I have picures but not sure how to post them in comments.

  49. jenny says:

    Please, if anyone has sewn a hat for adult women, I’d love to hear about it!

  50. Whistlepea says:

    I think Butterick 5206 was the best garment I sewed last year:

  51. Sarah says:

    Can’t wait to see what you come up with here…it will be wonderfully helpful!

  52. Annmarie says:

    i have 3 🙂
    for me i love amy butler Barcelona skirt pattern, easy to fit, easy to sew and quick!
    for my oldest son the britches and bloomers pattern again easy and quick, i use it with wovens and knits
    for my youngest a self drafted pattern based on a pair of zutano pants. the style is perfect over pocket cloth diapers

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