There’s one type of email which always gets me very excited – an email from one of the Big Four pattern companies informing me their new patterns for the coming season have been released.  But the excitement is not for the reason you might think . . .

I follow quite a lot of sewing bloggers and I love reading their posts, but two bloggers in particular write posts giving their thoughts on new patterns.  One is always a very serious and informed review, the other is usually quite hilarious and points out certain “weirdnesses”!  So when new patterns are out, I look at the patterns myself, determine my own views on them, then wait in anticipation for these “pattern review” posts.

Recently I thought, “maybe I could write posts like that”, then immediately dismissed the idea as I didn’t think I’d have much to say.  That was, until yesterday morning, when I received one of THOSE emails, from Butterick.  It turns out I have plenty of opinions!  So here it is, the inaugural edition of the Quirky Kiwi Pattern Review!  I hope you find it educational/informative/amusing (hopefully it will be at least one of the 3!) 😀

Lets start with the ones I like.

NOTE: Just click on any of the photos to open up the Butterick page for that pattern (opens in a new tab.)

Butterick 6285 – Patterns By Gertie

Gertie is a well known blogger who loves vintage style and in fact she’s written 3 books on the subject (I have the first one, which is great, would like the 2nd one, and the 3rd one isn’t released until next year).  And now she’s designing patterns for Butterick and also her own fabric!  (This outfit is made using her latest fabric selection.)  So I really like this, the top especially, even though it’s nothing too unusual, but it’s done well, and I love the red rose fabric, great choice!

Butterick 6284 – Patterns By Gertie

Well I sort of like this dress, also by Gertie, but I wouldn’t make it for myself as the neckline is just not a good one for me.  I’m also not keen on this fabric (just my personal taste), and I don’t think it shows off the design details of the pattern.  Here’s the line drawing so you can see what I mean:  p.s. I love those shoes!

Butterick 6284 – Line Drawing

Moving right along . . .

Butterick 6292

This coat has some nice style lines and collar versions. Again, you can see more from the line drawings:

Butterick 6292

I’d make any of those versions, although View C is my least favourite.

Alright, now we’re moving on to a feature I like in one pattern:

Butterick 6295

That pocket in the side of the leggings is pretty cool.  Other than that, I much prefer the latest Pacific Leggings patterns from Sewaholic – that links to a blog post which I think shows off the pattern brilliantly 🙂

Now we move onto the Retro offerings:

Butterick Retro 6282

This isn’t really an era that excites me, but I appreciate that Butterick are trying to cater for lots of tastes.  On this one I just think the top pockets are positioned in a very strange place.  And there’s an interesting feature on this one, the front band and the pockets are cut in one!

Butterick Retro 6286

Well this one looks a little boring, until you see the illustration of how it’s supposed to look!

Butterick Retro 6286

That looks so much better!  And dig that crazy hat!  Also, there’s another View which is quite intriguing:

Butterick Retro 6286

The description says those brown pieces are an under collar and mock pockets.  I’d like to see this one made up as I’m just not sure how those mock pockets would look in real life.

I’m afraid we’ve got the bad/strange/confusing ones now.


Butterick 6283

At first glance, it just looks like a bit of a shapeless sack, but on closer inspection, there are some strange tucks going on.  Again, let me show you the line drawings and all it’s strangeness will be revealed:


Butterick 6283 Line Drawings

Yes, there are strange tucks/pleats/folds in random places on the front and back of this dress.  Don’t get me wrong, I love unusual details, but these just don’t do anything for the dress in my humble opinion.  Maybe if there were more of them that created a bit of shape and didn’t just look like accidents made by someone very new to this sewing lark?

Butterick 6291

So this pattern and the next one . . .

Butterick 6290

My question is:  Do people actually wear things like this?  I see a lot of patterns with this crossover, multi-fabric sort of theme, but I can’t ever recall seeing anyone wearing a garment like this out on the street.  I don’t see them for sale in shops either, so, why so many patterns?  Is it an American style that hasn’t taken off here in the UK?

Talking of the differences between US and UK fashions . . .

Butterick 6271

My beef with this is not the clothing.  But why would you wear spiky heeled shoes with something as slouchy as this outfit?  I notice a lot of casual wear patterns are photographed with the models wearing high heels – why?  Again, is it a US vs UK fashion thing?

Butterick 6269

Hasn’t this “flappy bits at the sides” thing been done to death already?  And this one really does look like an afterthought just tacked on the side.

This next pattern might be really clever and certainly looks practical, but I have no experience in this kind of thing, so to me it’s a bit of a curiosity.  Would it actually work, or is it just a gimmick?

Butterick 6301 – A coat to wear before pregnancy . . .

. . . during pregnancy . . .

. . . and after!

The panel in the front is sort of wedge shaped and can be zipped in either way up.  Couldn’t you do that with any zip up coat though?

Butterick 6297

Sorry, but this just screams ‘Chav’

Butterick 6294

This long shirt would actually be stunning, if only there wasn’t that superfluous flap of fabric at the back.  Make the front and back the same length, and you have a winner.  (Although I think that might be the fabric talking to me – can’t beat a zebra print!)  They have also styled it as a dress, seen here:

Butterick 6294 worn as a dress

and I still don’t like that long back flap.  Just cut it off!


And now we have the one which offends me the most.

Butterick 6289

It doesn’t look too bad, just lots of extra fabric hanging down over the front.  But hold on, one sleeve has draped fabric on it but the other doesn’t?  Is that what it actually looks like?  Well take a look at the back.

Butterick 6289 from the back

Oh, unfortunately, that is how it’s meant to look.  What a waste of fabric!  But the pattern doesn’t stop there.  Let me show you the other versions:


Ah, I see, someone is on a ruffley, frilly, flappey binge!

Nope, short sleeves don’t help it any

And they don’t look any better in the line drawings

And that’s it!  There are of course plenty of patterns which are quite normal, so do have a browse.  Here’s the link for you 🙂  New Butterick Patterns

Feel free to add your two pennies worth!