liesl’s lisette for butterick B6493 pencil skirt

I have a little confession to make. And I’ll tell you what it is because it might help you sew clothes that fit better. (I’ve told you this before, but it bears repeating.)

Here’s my secret: I don’t always sew the size that my measurements indicate I should sew. For example, I know I usually measure a size 12 in Butterick patterns. But for this skirt, Lisette for Butterick B6493, I knew that I wanted a closer fit than the size 12. So I made a 10.

Liesl's Lisette for Butterick B6493 pencil skirt sewing pattern

Liesl's Lisette for Butterick B6493 pencil skirt sewing pattern

How did I know? Here are a few clues. Whenever I purchase a pencil skirt I almost always alter it to fit better. Do you remember this article from my weekend links post a month ago? I sometimes make small alterations to my clothes like this because they just just look better. (I’m not one to take a Prada dress completely apart and reconstruct it, however; I’d rather sew something from scratch for myself.) I usually alter my skirts at the hips to get a better fit. So I took a few measurements of my favorite skirts and compared them to the finished measurements on the pattern pieces. (On the Lisette patterns these measurements are on the pattern pieces themselves; on our Liesl + Co. patterns they’re in a separate chart on the back of the envelope.) I could see that my preferred measurements were closer to a size 10, so that’s what I sewed. And I didn’t need to make a single adjustment to the pattern once I sewed the smaller size!

It’s a bit difficult to see that fun detail at the front hem with this fabric, but I know it’s there. Sometimes it’s more fun when clothes have a special detail that you only notice at close examination, isn’t it?

Liesl's Lisette for Butterick B6493 pencil skirt sewing pattern

Liesl's Lisette for Butterick B6493 pencil skirt sewing pattern

Now I already know what some of you are going to say, but the measurement chart isn’t off. It’s just that I prefer a fit with less ease than is given in the pattern. On the other hand, I almost always prefer a looser fit for tops and shirts! So it can be really helpful to look at the finished measurements when you’re choosing your size. Bear in mind that sometimes you really can’t tell until you’ve made a muslin, too. (I make plenty of those.)

For more information about choosing your size, here is a detailed post to help you. (You can find a whole series of posts to help you in our Learn to Sew tab at the top of our website, too.) But keep in mind that fit is personal, and you may need to check the fit in a muslin in order to refine it.

Pattern Details

Fabric: a super-soft mystery fabric that looks like a herringbone cashmere but burns like a polyester, so I suspect that’s what it is. (The price was definitely in the polyester realm and not anywhere close to the cashmere arena.)

Pattern: Lisette for Butterick B6493.

Notes: For the waist, I used the construction technique from our Liesl + Co. SoHo Shorts + Skirt, which is my favorite way to construct a waist without a waistband.

That’s it from me. Have you tried this pattern yet?

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6 Comments

  1. Jenny

    Gorgeous, Liesl! I think I may have to make this one too at some point.

    1. Oh, I hope you do! xoxo

  2. Colleen Patterson

    You know I wasn’t sure about that skirt until I saw it in that picture up there! OH MY GOODNESS that is SO CUTE! A lovely, interesting, feminine detail that makes a pencil skirt stand out but still work with other items.

    Yeah I’m going to need one of those (adds pattern to list)

    1. Ha ha! I know it can be difficult to tell much about a pattern from the photos on the cover. And it’s even more difficult now that I live so far from NYC and McCall’s and the photo shoots. Which is why I try to sew everything up myself. Oh, if there was only more time…

  3. This skirt is definitely is definitely on my to sew list and that’s exactly the kind of fit I think it needs. Assuming there are the standard Butterick 5/8″ seam allowances, I find that sizing down from my measurements and then playing into my seam allowances if necessary has been working well for me lately.
    Love that fabric, what a great find!

  4. Sarah Seufert

    Lovely classic skirt! Unique design at lower center front!

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