B4320 Dorothy dress for World Book Day

B4320 dorothy dress
B4320 Dorothy dress

World Book Day was last Friday but as luck would have it, Little Miss Ooobop’s school had to delay the fun by a week which gave me 10 days to get my act together. She had already decided upon Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz and I was quite relieved to be honest! The aim was not to overcomplicate issues this time! Well that was the thought.

Butterick B4320 comes with a hundred miles of tissue pattern for each of the 5 very different costumes. It was bulging at the seams when factory folded so you can imagine me trying to stuff it all back in after I’d wrestled with it on the living room floor. Needless to say, the Dorothy pieces have been separated out into their own envelope for easy retrieval… if there is a next time!


Though pretty easy to follow, this pinafore dress is incredibly well thought-out and is not throwaway costume stuff. The waistband is cut on the bias which gives a good, comfortable fit as are the straps and the top band of the bib. Each of those pieces are interfaced and faced and the inside facings are hand-stitched for a really neat finish inside. The back of the skirt has a zip in the back centre seam. Its been a while since I sewed anything but an invisible one but I quite like sewing in the ‘visible’ ones too! The straps cross over at the back and button on the inside though to be honest the buttons would have been a nice feature on the back too. This was a first time using the buttonhole stitch on the Brother machine and it sewed like a dream. Β The two white buttons on the front waist band are for decorative purposes only but I think they are really cute!

The only tricky thing about making this was when I ironed the fusible interfacing to the waistband. The iron was too hot, on steam setting and I managed to stretch it out two inches bigger than it was supposed to be! Easily recified though. (Rather than cut another one…) I just put the waistband facing on top and trimmed the excess!

The fabric was a timely find in a charity shop. I had seen it the week before, thinking it would make a lovely blouse. Its 100% cotton. but held back with stash mountain in mind. So when LMO brought up the subject of Dorothy I made it my first point of call the next day and the fact that it was still there was amazing! Β£2 for a proper Dorothy pinafore dress is pretty good going methinks, even though its not proper gingham but ‘mum’s the word’!

You may have noticed I didn’t go the whole hog and make the underdress too. I was up ’til midnight on the pinafore… I wasn’t about to do another shift for the underdress… I’ve got a jacket to finish, don’t you know?! And so, did you recognise the little top underneath? It’s actually my peasant top I made last April 2011. I just pulled up the elastic round the neck and ‘hey presto’, it fits a 7 year old…kind of! I’ve just knotted the elastic so if I ever get it back I can still get wear out of it this summer. ‘Refashioned me-mades’ … oh how I have moved on!

Big thank yous to the lovely Little Miss Ooobop! who makes a fabulous model and to the gorgeous Mr Ooobop! for his amazing photography skills.

33 Replies to “B4320 Dorothy dress for World Book Day”

  1. Looks very professional, great job! My two were very disappointed that high school doesn’t “do” world book day, even if they couldn’t dress up. Hope your daughter has a great time as Dorothy.

  2. LOVE it! How lucky LMO is that her mum makes her thins like this. With your Dorothy and Jane’s TinTin I think you guys are doing the sew blogging community proud!

    1. Thank you MrsC. Indeed, doesn’t Jane’s son look fabulous. Its an each way bet if I can get LMO to pose. She is very contrary! But she really likes this outfit so we got lucky!

    1. Aw thanks for your lovely comment. I’m not kidding… this was just an impossible sea of patterns all over the floor just to find the pieces I needed. There are hundreds! I’ve seen someone else post the same comment on Pattern Review!

      1. Pretty good value eh! hehehe. What I do is stick it in a bigger envelope, cut the original one into two and glue the front and back onto the new envelope. Or stick it in a ziplock bag with the envelope showing. It defies the laws of physics!

        1. I think ziplock bags are the way forward. I use big ones while they are in use, especially when I use vintage patterns. I don’t want to damage the envelope further by keep taking pieces out and putting them back in. I definitely think I should invest in some smaller ones for permanent housing.

    1. Thanks Jen. She was very up for posing so Dan had to react quick which is why the photo is a little bit fuzzy. No time to set up a tripod… she’d have changed her mind in a flash!

  3. This is so cute!! I can’t believe you made it in one night – good on you! I can never get pattern pieces back in either – so I stuff (place neatly) everything into zip lock bags πŸ™‚

    1. Thanks Zo. I had cut the pieces in the afternoon but it took most of the evening to make it. Far more involved than I had anticipated but I have one very happy Dorothy so it makes it all worth it! I think you are right. Zip lock bags defo sound like the way forward!

  4. Oh Janene, it’s absolutely wonderful. She looks gorgeous in it and you’ve done a brilliant job. The buttons were the first thing I noticed, so they were definitely worth adding! God, you put me to shame with my tiny bit of elastic sewing! x

  5. She looks so cute in that, it’s so nice for them to have a chance to get all dressed up in public like that!

  6. This is fabulous! I always had to go as a ghost to any dressing up days – it generally involved a white sheet with eyeholes cut out. Can you tell my Mother wasn’t a seamstress? Little Miss Ooobop is especially lucky! πŸ™‚

    1. Ha ha… there were a lot of ghosts at my school too! My mum was a seamstress so I always had lovely costumes but I never won a prize because everyone thought they were shop-bought! πŸ™‚

  7. Pingback: Book review: Couture Sewing Techniques (and an award) « ZoSews

Leave a Reply to MrsC Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.