When I find a pattern that is both super easy and stylish, I get really excited. I’ve had this pattern in my collection for a long time and now that I’ve sewn it, a second set is a must. Let’s get into the Pattern Review.

New Look 6581 | Pattern Review
New Look 6581 | Pattern Review

This is a beginner friendly pattern with only eight pieces total. There are six pieces for the dress/top and two for the pants. The pants have an elasticized waist. The instructions are straight forward and easy to follow. It’s available from size 8 (31.5″ bust, 33.5″ hip) to size 20 (42″ bust, 44″ hip). I cut a size 14 pants, and a size 12 for dress (View A), grading to a 16 at the hips.

New Look 6581 is designed for stretch knits only, like Lightweight Double Knit, Interlock, Jersey and Lightweight Ponte. I used a Medium Weight Knit that I purchased from Michael Levine years ago. They went out of business in 2020 and my heart is still broken. You can find knit options HERE.

New Look 6581 | Pattern Review

The fabric I used has a diagonal wide stripe print so the pattern pieces were actually cut on the straight grain (parallel to the selvedge). I cut the sleeves on the bias (diagonal to the selvedge) to achieve the vertical stripe. This shade of blue is so vibrant.

New Look 6581 | Pattern Review

I used my regular sewing machine, but you can also use a serger to sew this garment. The seam allowances were finished with the serger. I used size 80/12 Jersey (Ballpoint) Needles in the sewing machine and serger, with all purpose, polyester thread. To stabilize the neck and front facing, I used a medium weight fusible interfacing.

New Look 6581 | Pattern Review

The pieces can definitely be worn separately and I love the fit of these pants. I love lounging in knit pants with elastic waist. I have two ready-to-wear pairs that I’ve worn into the ground. I’m serious. They’re so old, but I haven’t wanted to let them go because they’re so comfortable.


So here’s what I plan to do. I’m gonna throw my old pants in the trash can outside. Not in the house–because I know myself. LOL! Then I will have to make more pairs.

New Look 6581 | Pattern Review

I’m thinking about doing a sew-along for this ensemble, at least the dress. The pants are super easy, with only two pieces to sew together. If you’re a beginner and want to sew the dress with me, leave a comment below.

New Look 6581 | Pattern Review

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This Post Has 78 Comments

  1. Raquel Reyes

    Hello! Ms.Anita,i have this pattern and i made the dress version but something when wrong end put it to the side.
    Yes! please i would like to see the tutorial of this pattern(New look 6581) you are so kind & patience to explain every
    step. Thank you, Anita God bless forever

  2. Sheila Thomas

    I love your methods of teaching, although I have been sewing for over forty years I learn something new each time I watch you on YouTube. I have plenty of patterns to chose from with time to spare. I have lost 20 pounds and now I am ready to sew. I am so glad I found your blog and channel. Thank you again. It is time for me to dig out my patterns.


    1. Anita Morris

      Yay, Sheila! How exciting! Have fun sewing your beautiful garments.

  3. Cynthia

    Hey there, I love it! I love your channel and teaching. I look forward to your online sewing course please count me in!Please do a tutorial on this Pattern. I want to make it.

    1. Anita Morris

      Hi Cynthia! Thank you for stopping by. Stay tuned for the sewing course.


    Looks lovely I can’t wait to learn how to make it

  5. Cynthia

    I really love this outfit on you. I am wondering how the dress would look with leggings. I’m always looking longer tops/dresses for leggings. Seriously, this outfit looks way better on you than it does on the model on the pattern envelope but I think you could pull off wearing a paper sack. You are beautiful on the inside as well as the outside. I love your videos. I’ve been sewing my entire life but I have learned a trick or two watching you. Thank you.

    1. Anita Morris

      Hi Cynthia! Thank you so much for your kind words. Yes, you can definitely wear this dress with leggings. I think it would look nice.

  6. Gwendolyn Styles

    Looking good my dear! Great work!

  7. Vera

    Hi Anita,
    Loving the look. Yes. Wear this ensemble to your book signing.
    Also, I would like to see a sew along as well.
    Take care

  8. Phoebe

    Hi Anita, wow, a lovely, dignified outfit! I’m not a fan of leggings, have been mulling over making a dress/ tunic to go over slim pants. You really nailed it on this outfit!

    1. Anita Morris

      Thank you so much Phoebe. Yes, the dress/top would look great over slim pants.

  9. Marie Faubell

    Stunning and beautiful and comfy. Sew Along would be helpful. Very afraid of knits.

    1. Anita Morris

      Thank you Marie! Sew-along coming.

  10. Ms. Hunt

    Yes, lovely for a book signing. However, your exquisite style, your classiness, any outfit you select would be perfect❣️

  11. Ms. Hunt

    Yes! However, your exquisite style, your classiness, any outfit you select would be perfect❣️

  12. Vanessa Armstead

    It’s perfect for a book signing- not business looking, it gives you an open, friendly, let’s let the hair down fun comfortable look. Sometimes our clothes dictate our attitude if your clothes are uncomfortable it shows in your face and attitude. You know how your face and attitude can be when your shoes are too tight! Wish you had taken a picture with the dress and pants separately.

    1. Anita Morris

      Thank you, Vanessa! I like the casual vibe too but I’m also planning to make a suit to wear for a book signing.

  13. Edna

    Anita this outfit looks great !! (as do all of the ones you sew). I think it would be a great outfit for your event . I would definitely be interested in a sew along as you are such an excellent teacher and that is the only way I would attempt something like this outfit. I know you said you used a medium weight knit, could you specify what that would be as I am having trouble finding the right knits to sew with and it looks like what I’d like. ( looks sturdier not as flimsy as some knits I’ve found at the store) I also like the fabrics you used in your TNT floral dress, could you share what type of knit it is ?
    Thank you so much for sharing your gifts, looking forward to more sew alongs. God bless you.

    1. Anita Morris

      Hi Edna! For this outfit, I don’t remember exactly what type of knit it is because it’s been in my collection for the longest time. I purchased it from the Michael Levine Loft where fabric is just thrown into boxes and you had to dig for treasures. This is similar to a double knit or Ponte knit, which is thicker than jersey and interlock.

      The floral knit I used for the TNT is another ML Loft purchase. It reminds me of a Ponte knit.

  14. Dara

    Anita, you look FAB as usual. Thank you for sharing!

  15. Sue

    That looks great on you and will be very appropriate for your book signing. It flatters and makes you look tall. I will definitely tune in if you do a sew-a-long on this one. Fitting tips would be a plus, because I think the relative length of the dress/tunic would be really important on a shorter person.

    1. Anita Morris

      Hi Sue! Gotcha! The pattern actually has a top version or you can shorten the length of the dress.

  16. Peggy Johnson

    I commented earlier but yes I would like to participate in a sew along to get comfortable sewing with knit fabric. Thank you so much.

  17. Deana Frink


  18. Crystal

    This looks perfect on you as usual! I could definitely see you wearing this to your book signing! Please, please, please do a detailed sew-along for this! I’m intimidated with wrap tops/dresses, so one of your detailed sew-alongs would be absolutely perfect! You always do such a great job explaining things! Thank you!

    1. Anita Morris

      Awesome Crystal! Thank you for your feedback.

  19. Winnie

    Anita you look gorgeous as usual. I agree that the outfit would be perfect for a book signing, it looks very soft and comfortable. And yes! I see along would be perfect.

  20. Peggy Johnson

    This is just beautiful to wear anytime. I love it. The color is perfect. Thanks for sharing.

  21. JeriLynn

    This outfit is perfect for your book signing very classy and the color looks great on you, having said that, I would love a sew along with this pattern.
    Also, I’m trying to incorporate the wall decor in your sewing studio “Give me Jesus and a sewing machine” in my sewing space too. I found the Etsy company Sticky thingz (thank you for the info) I have one more question; what size font did you use? 8″x36? and is #23 the font style that you choose.
    Please forgive all my questions I know you’re a busy girl and I appreciate your time.

    1. Anita Morris

      Hi JeriLynn!

      Here’s the information for the Vinyl I ordered:

      Font Type: Questa Grande from
      Font Size: 6″ X 72″ inches
      Font Color: Black

      1. JeriLynn

        Oh thank you so much for the quick response, your the best! I’m so anxious to order this thank you again.

  22. Ann Buttermann

    The ensemble is perfect, stylish, calm! Wear it for book signing! I’d love to try this pattern also.

  23. Zina

    I love that ensemble! Perfect and comfortable for a book signing.

  24. De Campbelll

    This is a great outfit for a book signing!

  25. Sandra Campbell

    I think this is perfect for a book signing.

  26. Sandra Campbell

    I think this is perfect for a book signing. Perfect color and style.

  27. Judith A Graham

    A sew a long would be great! I especially need to learn more about sewing with knits because I always avoid them. Great job and blog as usual!

  28. Rosalind

    Hi Anita, I really like this material. Beautiful color & it you look amazing. Wow. Now you are going to make me go down to look in the box & see if I have that pattern. Lol

  29. Nancy Jenuwine

    Love it! It would be PERFECT for your book signing!

  30. Ginger Wells

    Beautiful!!! I would love to do a sew along. I haven’t sewn anything but masks since March of last year I need something to help me get my sew jo back

    1. Anita Morris

      Awesome Ginger! This would be a good one to get you back on the machine.

  31. Patricia Hines

    You look absolutely beautiful . Go for it perfect for your book signing . I also would love a sew along of this beautiful pant suit . Thanks for sharing blessings to you and yours . Keep up the good work . So happy for you .

  32. Bev

    I would love to make this with your guidance!!

  33. Debby

    I love this pant suit on you. The color is beautiful. I wonder because of the design on fabric what specifically did you do when cutting out the pattern? I know you had to pay close attention so the design would align correctly.

    1. Anita Morris

      Thank you, Debby! Yes, it’s one of those prints that requires matching. But honey, I totally ignored it and allowed the lines to fall where they wanted. LOL! That’s terrible, but because the lines within the stripes are in different directions, it kind of worked.

  34. maureen

    Yes, I would love to make this with you! I’ve never made pants and am somewhat afraid to try so that as a separate video would be awesome! This pattern looks amazing on you! I love how you designed the layout of the fabric. I’m curious on how tall you are? I’m 5’4″ and am wondering if this look would work for me since I’m not very tall. Thanks for sharing this!

    1. Anita Morris

      Hi Maureen. I’m 5’6″ but there is a top version if the dress isn’t for you. Or, you could shorten the hem on the dress.

  35. Denise Howard

    This outfit looks great on you. Perfect for any occasion.
    I would love a sew a long tutorial on this pattern. Please consider. Thanks so much for listening to a large following of beginners.

    1. Anita Morris

      Thank you Denise. Stay tuned, sis. The sew along is coming. You just completely burst my heart wide open when you said, “Thanks for listening to a large following of beginners.” Whew! My heart!

  36. Denisha McCarter

    It’s a yes from me!

  37. JPF

    I would love to make this as well. It would also be helpful to me to have assistance picking the correct fabric.

  38. Lynn

    So, pretty. I would love a sew along. I have wasted too much beautiful fabric trying it on my own. Only problem is New Look patterns don’t work for my size.

    1. Anita Morris

      Awww, Lynn! I’m so sorry. I hate that the pattens don’t accommodate all sizes.

  39. Melanie Winter

    A beautiful, elegant outfit.

  40. Mamie Brockington

    Yes, Anita! BEAUTIFUL!
    Please do a sew along!
    Also, great for book signing!!!!

    1. Anita Morris

      Thank you Mamie! Okay, I will.

  41. Jenna

    I am a beginner and would love a sew along on this , if would you be able to also include fitting tips. It is gorgeous on you and perfect for a book signing!

    1. Anita Morris

      Awesome Jenna! Okay, stay tuned.

Comments are closed.