I Googled all over the web, and all I found were pics from the pattern envelope. Not even Tilton has sewn and shared a version with us. So here we go - Butterick 5881!
I really like all the pieces but wanted to understand the pattern. So I decided to reconstruct the dress. I spent an entire day putting the pattern pieces together and tracing a simplified version of the dress.
Underdress with attached skirt
|Black poly/cotton broadcloth from Holly Lobby - very lightweight and smooth|
Overdress with placket and back gathers (more on both below)
|Fuji Afternoon Umbrellas - JoAnn Fabrics Keepsake Calico|
Robert Kaufman Spot On Brown Mini Dots - Pink Chalk Fabrics
I used a faux front placket in the contrast fabric, in place of the lapped placket. I'll continue to do this - I would rather sew a bound buttonhole than do a lapped placket!
I also used the contrast fabric to form a casing for the back elastic, which I elongated by 1/2" and centered. And I only used 3 pieces of elastic, instead of 4.
I was not at all sure about the length of this dress - underdress or overdress! The pattern was not much help. It does not have lengthen/shorten lines.
OK, so I'm a bit over 5' 7". On the assumption that the pattern is made for someone 5'5" - 5'6" tall, I added 2" to the overdress, just below the line of the placket, front and back. And 2" to the skirt of the underdress, just below its upper edge. I purposely did not add length at the hemlines, because I did not want to add width there and throw off the lines of the dress.
Turned out well! The overdress is perfect, with a 1" hem. I ended up taking 2" off the underdress - go figure! - and again put in a 1" hem. It's not long by any means, maybe a little shorter than some of my dresses. But the dip in the right side makes it seem a little longer. I really like it - so much I twirled!
All the leaves are from the mahogany trees, which switch out their foliage in April for a new outfit :-)
I really really like this dress - so much that I have 6, yes, 6 pieces of linen blend coming into the loft in interesting (no, not pastel!) colors, so that I can sew a couple multi-piece versions. And I want to do at least 2 more in print/contrast versions. Love doing that.