Thursday, July 17, 2014

Finished: McCalls 6932

Recently, I decided to relax my "All Burda, All the time" policy and reacquaint myself with the Big Four.  Big Four offered classic designs I liked that were perhaps too boring for Burda, whose designs are more contemporary and trendy.  I came to a realization during this process.  The problem is not the Big Four patterns;  the problem is me.  I don't like fitting and I refuse to make muslins.  If I'd made a muslin, I would have known the size I selected for this blouse was too big.

Pattern Description
This is a classic camp shirt.  The pattern can be used for both men and women.

Pattern Sizing

Fabric used
I used a linen blend.  I love sewing linen and this blend behaved very much like real linen.  It was easy to press and make neat corners on the pockets.  The only thing missing was the wrinkles!

Most sewers may be familiar with the method of attaching a standard style yoke entirely by machine.  With the standard style yoke, the fronts and back of the blouse are rolled up inside the yoke and the yoke facing can be sewn  entirely by machine.  The collar is sewn on after the yokes are attached.  M6932 is a blouse type yoke.  The method is different because the collar is attached to the neck seam before attaching the front facing and yoke facing units.  The  blouse unit and inside unit are constructed separately, the collar is sandwiched between the two units; then the units are sewn together at the neckline.  The front and back are rolled up into the yoke and the shoulder and back yoke seams are sewn, much like the procedure in the standard yoke.  I found directions for the blouse type yoke in Easy Guide to Sewing Blouses  (Long, 1997), part of the Sewing Companion Library (which is a great collection of books, though out of print).  I love the result, a very neat looking inside.

When I sew a Burda magazine pattern, I trace it and then I sew it.  I rarely make any pattern changes and, in most cases, I'm satisfied with the fit.  I can't follow the same procedure with McCall's, Butterick or Vogue.  Some pattern work is usually needed and I usually choose to not do it.  The resulting fit can be horrible and I don't wear the garment.  

I have decisions to make.  Do I hang on to my stubborn refusal to make muslins and end up with garments made from McVougericks that don't fit well?  I'm much happier with Burda garments that I can sew with minimal, if any alterations.  Do I resign myself to making muslins if I want to sew Big Four patterns?  Sometimes Big Four's boring classic designs are just what I want.  I have fabric for another blouse.  Do I make M6932 again in a smaller size?  Do I try another McVoguerick pattern?  Or do I return to old faithful Burda?  So many questions!  The immediate solution is not quite as bad as making a muslin. For now, I'll just have to take in the sides of this blouse.


  1. I do like the blouse on you (even if it needs to be taken in). You'll come up with the right decision for you - maybe it's mostly Burda with a few Big 4 here and there (with a quick and dirty muslin before cutting the good fabric). Whatever you decide.....will be OK!

  2. I see what you mean about the blouse, It's a good color and is sewn really well. One thing to remember about the Big Four is to use the upper bust measurement to determine your size and then make a Full Bust Adjustment if needed.

  3. And for me, it's the opposite problem - Burda and my body shape just do not seem to go together. They do have some neat looking things, but I've gotten tired of making 3 or 4 muslins to get the darn things to fit. I'm sticking with Vogue (and Kitchy Koo, for independent patterns). They just work for me!

  4. Could you just compare pattern pieces from a big 4 pattern versus the burda patterns and use that to pick your size? Doing this has helped me to have more successes with the big 4.

    1. Good idea! I'm going to try that. Thanks!

  5. I'm excited to have just come from the Palmer/Pletsch fitting workshop in Portland. Before going I hated making muslins and now after going I now know it is really unnecessary. To that I'm excited. I would highly recommend using the Palmer/Pletsch method in the book "Fit For Real People" it is an excellent resource that will change the way you fit any pattern. It details ALL the pattern companies fitting and drafting points. Highly recommended.

  6. Decisions, decisions, decisions - for me that is what sewing is quite often all about. What fabric, what pattern, to muslin or not to muslin, and sometimes making up my mind seems an impossible task. I've always love a good camp shirt for the summer. Yours looks great to me, I'd say go down a size and give it another try.

  7. Whooooo-HOOooooo! Thanks for the brief musical interlude. That was FUN! And, of course, I've ordered the camp shirt pattern. That looks so great for the summer heat and yard work.

  8. With my body shape and height, I always have to adjust patterns. I totally feel your pain about hating making muslins. I do it for base pattern shapes then compare new patterns to the adjusted patterns.

    You've had lovely success with the Burdas. Good luck making your pattern company decision!