Pattern review : McCall’s M5966

This dress was made when she was not yet three, and unused for a while because it was too big for her . It’s still too big , falling off her shoulders almost, but getting shorter at the hem, so it has been put into her regular wardrobe.From this experience and others, I have found that McCall’s patterns seem to run large in sizing, but I’ll come to that later.

The pattern features a gathered skirt, crossover bodice with three sleeve options, and a back zipper opening. I changed it up a bit inspired by the Library Dress from O & S.


I made a size 2, redrafting the bodice with a front waistband cut separately and attached with flat piping and lined on the inside for a smooth finish. I didn’t realise the bodice was going to be so wide, or I would definitely have redrafted the shoulders as well. My favourite part of the pattern, the very unusual tulip-shaped puffed sleeves , don’t show as well as they should have,  because of the wide shoulders.


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Coming to my little rant about McCall’s patterns – I am most certainly not the first person to discover this, but it is rather disappointing when a pattern has to be altered drastically to fit the child, despite her conforming to  the correct size measurements on the pattern envelope. This pattern for example, M 5966: The size 2  is obviously too wide , at least 1.5 inches off, on my three year old who fits perfectly into size 3 clothing otherwise. Oh, well. I like the crossover front and sleeve options on the pattern, and the next time I think I will use a basic bodice from my favourite New Look 6767 to achieve a better fit.


Pattern review – New Look 6767 – toddler dresses

There are apparently two different patterns in circulation by this description, the one I use has sizes 6mo to 4 years while the other is sized  XS to L . Both are baby and toddler dresses with a basic bodice ; my pattern is sleeveless while the  other one ( which I do not possess) has sleeves and a sash. Both appear to be out of print now.

Anyway, the sleeveless New Look 6767 is my all-time favorite pattern for little girl dresses. It has a round-necked bodice, a gathered skirt of basic rectangles, a back zip opening  and cute pockets. There is also an accompanying bloomer pattern. The look can be varied by adding shoulder bows and a scallop at the waist. It comes in 5 sizes in one envelope, 6months to 4 years.

The great thing about this pattern is that it is a good fit and can be used to make lots of variations on the basic bodice dress. I have used it with back buttons instead of a zip, shortened the bodice to make a smocked front dress, created a wrap back from the basic bodice , and have plans to make a dress with a circular skirt .  The only regret I have is that this pattern does not have sleeves. A point to note is that if the dress is made adhering strictly to the pattern, the skirt is really long , almost  calf length, which is not really evident in the envelope illustration.  I always shorten the skirt pieces when using this pattern.