New Look 6143 pattern review: happy birthday to meeeee

New Look 6143 black lace dress

I don’t know about outside of the UK, but here our shops are awash with the customary lace dresses in preparation for the oncoming festive season. I imagine else where it is the same. Personally I feel a good lace dress is a timeless classic you can just pull out of your wardrobe year in, year out. Having already made a cream lace dress earlier this year (Vogue 8766), I decided to make a black version using New Look 6143, which I picked up recently in the New Look pattern sale. This was the dress I made for my birthday (it was on Friday) and coincidentally have also entered it in the LBD contest over on (hence the different styling shots).

Here are some of the versions I used as inspiration currently available. Prices range from £170 – £130 so I am quite happy that I saved myself a considerable amount of money when making mine!

Great Plains Tilly lace scoop dress
Great Plains Tilly scoop neck lace dress back detail
Untold lace dress
Episode lace dress – close up of yoke/ neckline

Pattern review:

Pattern Description:

Misses’ dress with pleated flared skirt has round bias-bound neckline, tie belt or back tie options and can be made sleeveless or with cap or 3/4 length sleeves.  Dresses D and E have contrast front yoke.

I made view D with sleeves from view B.

Pattern Sizing:

10 – 22 – I made my usual size for the bodice, grading out to a size larger for the skirt. I also cut shorter sleeves.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?

Yes I think so.

Were the instructions easy to follow?

Yes they were, but I did deviate from them somewhat.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?

I appear to be the first person that has reviewed this pattern, so I don’t know if it is just me (or my choice of fabric – see below), that contributed to this, but I don’t like the way the front neck is too wide and doesn’t quite sit right. I suspect this may be due to my fabric choice.

I really do like the contrast yoke option and I would consider making this dress again maybe using a more obvious contrast yoke choice.

Fabric Used:

Black corded lace fabric with corded and scalloped edge and a tan coloured acetate underlining/ lining fabric.

Unfortunately when I came to cut this lace fabric I realised that it actually has some amount of stretch to it. My machine did not like sewing this lace for whatever reason, and I ended up using my walking foot for most of the sewing.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:

  • I omitted the facing instruction in the pattern and decided to instead apply a full lining to the bodice part of the dress (except the front yoke).
  • I omitted the bias binding at the end of the sleeves – there was no need for me to do this due to the scalloped edge finish to the lace.
  • Like wise I did not have to hem the skirt due to the scalloped edge finish to the lace.
  • I mainly used french seams and a hong kong finish to neaten the edges at the waistline and at the zip opening. (I didn’t like how the pattern suggested to just join the skirt part to the bodice!)
  • I inserted a partially exposed zip to the rear of the dress using a tutorial from the pattern runway website.
  • I disregarded the patterns instructions to make the bias binding for the neckline, and instead used ready made satin bias binding to finish. With hindsight my lace may not have been able to support the weight of the binding (coupled with the stretch in the lace): I would love to hear anyone’s thoughts on this, especially as I would like to make this dress again maybe with a mesh contrast yoke.
  • I added thread belt loops using this tutorial.
  • I also used the same thread belt tutorial to make lingerie straps in an attempt to rectify the neck gaping.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?

Yes and yes. I would make the contrasting yoke more obvious next time: I think it is a nice design feature. BUT I would need to get over the neck problem!


If you are mad on Mad Men styling then this is the pattern for you. Easy to make and love the cute sweet heart contrast yoke detail.

New Look 6143 close up neck detail
New Look 6143 black lace dress evening shot
New Look 6143 black lace dress exposed zip detail
New Look 6143 daytime look
New Look 6143 daytime look
New Look 6143 daytime look – back view
New Look 6143 plain dress

Posted by

By day I work in the exciting world of pharmaceutical regulatory affairs, registering medicines (!), but by night I turn in to a sewing diva, making all manner of clothes in my beautiful sewing space (which you can tour using the link at the top of this blog). I love how sewing and sewing clothes that fit my curvy body continually challenges me. I enjoy working with all different types of fabric, and whilst I don't like to put restrictions on myself and say I won't buy RTW, the truth is that I probably rarely do buy it, preferring the fit of my own me-made clothes. I love to use natural fibres where ever possible and colourful coats are an obsession of mine! Sewing is both my addiction and my therapy. You can contact me at

19 thoughts on “New Look 6143 pattern review: happy birthday to meeeee

  1. Well done on your dress, darling. You look fabulous. I have been wanting to get into garment making for myself but have a little difficulty on sizing. May I ask if have used a dress form? If so, where did you buy or did you make one?

    1. Thanks Joanna. I have a second hand adjustable dress form that I bought from eBay but it is currently languishing in the attic as it needs some additional padding adding in some areas! So I don’t use one. I don’t think it is essential to have one to get a great fitting garment. It’s more accurate to try a muslin on yourself anyway. Good luck!

  2. Found you via PR. Your version is gorgeous. I had the same problems with the neck, and I used cotton. Congrats on your version… I actually like yours better than the expensive RTW versions!

  3. This might be a silly question but is the hem allowance included in the pattern? its indicated on a few of the pieces, like the belt tie, but not on the main pieces.
    Its a beautiful dress.

    1. Hi Katie, the hem allowance for this pattern is 1 inch, as marked on the skirt pieces of the pattern. I am 5 foot 3 and didn’t hem the skirt because I used scalloped lace. The dress finished just below my knees doing this. Hope that helps.

  4. Love your dress! I am a novice seamstress, and am making this dress in my sewing class (it will be my first dress). Mine is in a patterned polycotton, but seeing your lovely dress, I will definitely make it again in a lace fabric. Great job!

    Also, your blog is brilliant, showing your versions of designer dresses. I really liked your Vivienne Westwood knock off too! I hope one day to be as good at sewing as you.

    1. Hi Julia, thanks so much for your comment. I have only got 18 months experience…not that much. But the more you sew, the better you get! And it’s something I love.

  5. I made this dress and had the exact same problem with the neckline and I used cotton. I plan to add 2 more darts over the side bust area to try to make it sit right. Im actually making this dress again in white lace over white, and a bit longer as my 1950’s style wedding dress : )

    1. Hi Kirsten you are the second person who’s said that so that makes three of us! Shame…was considering making it again for the summer but I think I will look for another pattern instead. But I hope it works for your wedding dress!

  6. Thank you for your post. I am making the dress now and found your information very helpful. I am excited to give it a try- doing a yellow lining and
    pale orange embroidered overlay. I can’t decide if I should do version B or D or modify a version of both 🙂

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