I’ve had this 1974 pattern by designer Stephen Burrows hanging on my idea board for some time, and last week I finally got around to making it. Burrows was one of the bright young designers who designed clothes that were perfectly in step with the late 1960s and into the 70s. I’ll be writing more about him this week, as I feel like he is not as well known as he should be.
I fell in love with this pattern the minute I spotted it. I did have concerns about the collar, as I usually don’t like anything quite that big. But it didn’t *scream* 1970s, so I made the decision not to alter it. I’m glad I did, because it is just right with a scarf tied beneath.
And that, dear friends, is why Burrows is a designer and I am not. Just because one wears clothes does not mean one can design them. (Are you listening, celebrity-designer-wannabes?)
I made this from a wonderful double knit cotton jersey I had stashed away. Don’t hear double knit and think , “Yuck!” This fabric is a very far cry from the double knit polys of the 1970s, though I’d bet that most incarnations of this pattern were actually made in poly double knit. Double knit merely means that the fabric is knit with a double stitch that makes the knit the same on both sides. There honestly is not a wrong side to this fabric. It was knit as a tube, and is probably the nicest cotton knit I’ve ever sewn.
Note that the pattern cover features this dress in bright colors and in white. 1974 was not a big year for the little black dress, and Stephen Burrows was known for his use of exciting color.
The pattern, McCall’s 4089, was simple to make, and went together in just a few hours time. I really recommend it if you are in the market for a simple, but not plain, knit dress.