mccalls 5613

well now i’m posting projects out of order, but is suppose it’s no difference to you. my ocd doesn’t approve, but it just so happens that i got great pics of this dress and wanted to share.


i dug through my kid patterns looking for something i could make out of specific fabric scraps i had in the too small to use for myself pile. i came up with mccalls 5613 and set about doing view B. i made the top portion in leftover chambray from my much-beloved archer (i seriously wear that shirt 3-5 times a week. if you haven’t made an archer yet, why not?!) and the skirt portion from leftover seersucker from way back when. i was slightly hesitant that this might look a little young for my daughter; she is, after all, nine. and, can i just say, it is very hard to dress a girl her age. so much of what’s available in rtw just looks trashy. i don’t need to dress her in ruffled sappy little kid clothes, but surely there is some middle ground?


anyways, back to the dress! i lined the bodice in muslin, and the skirt in a lightweight poly lining. i try to avoid polyester, but i do like this lining for skirts. i don’t know what it’s called, but i pick it up at joanns for about $4/yd. it has a nice drape and just the right amount of opacity to work with a huge range of fabrics. i didn’t have much of it on hand, so for about the bottom third, i took six inch wide strips that i pieced together to make a long strip, ruffled with the serger and sewed on. it actually worked out quite well and gave the skirt a little extra body at the hem.


oddly enough, i almost like the back of the dress better than the front. it’s a pullover dress, so the back portion has a casing made from the seam allowance with 1/4″ elastic threaded through. while the pleating on the front is nice, i may use this pattern again and re-draft the front to be more like the back and have it gathered and elasticized all the way around. i’m only so-so on the button straps. it’s cute, but the straps end up being cut on the bias and it just doesn’t feel very sturdy. it feels like it needs some interfacing, and the front of the bodice under the straps occasionally shifts out of place. you can see in the pics how there is some pulling where the buttons are attached. not a deal-breaker, but i would definitely make adjustments before doing another version.


for size, i had the envelope that was 3T-6. i knew i needed about a size 7, and since the pieces are extremely not complicated, i graded it up a size. one thing i do like about this pattern is that the skirt is actually a-line and not just a gathered rectangle. it really helps keep down the poofy-ness up top without sacrificing a nice full hemline. it seems many patterns have gone away from the a-line skirt in favor of a rectangle if it’s gathered, so props for that, mccalls.

PicMonkey Collage

all in all, this is a nice pattern for a quick summer dress. sorry for being so picture heavy, but my little photo-bomber was really hamming it up. happy summer!


—lisa g.

9 thoughts on “mccalls 5613

  1. dokucug says:

    They are too cute! I love every single picture, but especially the one where he’s hugging her 🙂 AND the ones in the post you linked with the suit: OMG that suit is perfect! And who doesn’t love a tiny boy in a suit?!

    I agree with you about the back vs. the front – to me the gathered back looks more casual and sundress-y.

    • lisa g says:

      thanks! those two have a lot in common, they just don’t realize it yet! and i’m combing my scraps to see if i can make another one. she really likes the dress.

  2. elise says:

    Sweet! I love that you’re keeping them young with your makes. Whenever I look to buy even my four year old niece clothes, it all looks way too grown up already. That dress is perfect for a nine year old. Great job.

  3. Susan says:

    What an excellently perfect use of your leftovers. Makes me want to send my scraps to you… Want some of them? 😀 I have nothing so awesome to do with them and yet refuse to toss them. If they inspire a photoshoot half this cute I could die happy!

    • lisa g says:

      haha noooo!!!! i’m drowning in my own! i wish i could use them all up this way… not sure why fabric scraps seem so precious, but yeah i can’t toss them either. i keep saying “quilt” but never do anything about it… maybe a crazy madras patchwork dress? somebody stop me…

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