50′s Floral

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I attend the 50′s Fair in Sydney last wekeend and I chose to sew up Simplicity 1459. I was in love with this pattern as soon as I saw it and couldn’t wait to swoop it up. I love the button front, the exaggerated collar and full skirt – just all of it really! I had the perfect rose print cotton in my stash wating for such a pattern for over a year. I picked up the fabric on the clearance tables at Spotlight for about $4 a metre, and bought about 4 metres as this kind of vintage dress just eats into your fabric.

Whilst the dress does look a little scary, it wasn’t too challenging to sew up – so don’t be put off! I cut out the dress in a size 12 and it was pretty true to size, and with not a lot of ease as some Simplicity patterns tend to have. I have made up a similar vintage style dress before with short sleeves so I thought I would give the 3/4 sleeve option a go. I was also aware it is Winter, so it was a more practical option too! The only adjustments I made during cutting it out was adding 1.5 inches to the hem because I felt on the pattern envelope image it only ended just after the knees and I was going to be wearing a crinoline underneath it, so I wanted it to be slightly longer. I aldo cut out the sleeves in a size 14 as I find sleeves in lots of patterns too tight for my arms.

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I did a small amount fitting during the construction but nothing major to be aware of – just a nip and tuck on the side seams and shoulder. To finish off the dress I put in a invisible zip down the side. I was going to make it more authentic and do a lapped zipper but given its on the side of the dress and with the busy-ness of the fabric, I think the invislble zipper is a better option. The pattern calls for two buttons down the front bodice which really aren’t enough. I ended up sewing on three buttons and tried it on with a sash I had made previously but it still felt like it gaped so I ended up adding another button and foregoing the sash when I wore it. I recommend sewing four buttons down the front when making it.

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The only other thing I would mention is the sleeves. If you tend to have to take out your sleeves thanks to bigger arms, I suggest sizing up. I cut out my sleeves in a bigger size and I still had to take them out so much I almost ran out of fabric. Right from the top to the bottom of the sleeve had to be taken out a lot. So be warned!

More piccies of the fair and my dress on my blog: http://www.bobbinandbaste.com/post/50s-fair-1

 

Hello and a herbal dress


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Hello there! This is my first post on We Sew Retro and I’m happy to share with you one of the dresses I have sewn this summer. This is actually the second dress that I have ever sewn and I must say I’m really happy with the result (although I promised myself never to show the inside of the dress to anyone because it’s just sooo messed up in there!). I was really excited to make it from an original pattern from a German magazine called Praktische Mode, issue 5/1961. If you want to read more about how the sewing went, feel free to visit my blog post about it here. Also take a look at the illustration below — the original drawing from the magazine. My dress is the one marked Abb. 1 and changed it just a little bit to better fit my silhouette.

IMG_0508I’m a huge fan of wearing vintage-inspired clothes so naturally I’ve already worn this dress a ton. If you want to see more photos of the dress itself and how I like to wear it on a daily basis, head over to this post.DSC_0118 DSC_0221 wa Thanks for reading! I hope to post some more as I sew more. I’m really loving this place, full of talented seamstresses!

First post and Practice “Tubs!”

I love it when my practice sewing endeavors turn out all right! I’ve had this pattern for ages and am just now getting around to making it. Terrible, yes. Now I know I want to make more in many other fabrics beside this lovely coral linen.

This pattern is called, “Tubs” the Tie-on washable hat. I believe it’s 1933 but I can’t be certain, for my pattern is a little bit tattered. It only took me a few hours in total and mainly because of the very careful stitch detail (yes, sometimes I am a perfectionist even with prototypes).

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The stitch detailing is in a darker more orange coral and I wish it could be seen a bit better.

Tubs4The Brim is interlined with same fabric and interfaced with a light weight crinoline.

Tubs3 I think because it was so easy to make I’ll make a few more and put them on my Etsy shop for sale!   Tubs3

Tubs2    It was a gas to make. Small things always are because you can have a new addition to your wardrobe in only a few hours! Cut it outta scraps, sew it up pressing along the way, put it on and bobs your uncle!

 

 

An Emergency Bolero (Pauline Pattern 2217, c. 1940s)

I’m sure we’ve all been there – no jackets/boleros/cardigans in your wardrobe matches your chosen outfit?!?  I had that dilemma the day before the Sydney Fifties Fair, nothing matched my chosen dress (a 1940′s rayon day-dress by Mynette).

Luckily, I had Pauline 2217 sitting on my sewing desk and the bolero seemed to be the answer to my emergency!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I love all the details on this bolero – the winged collar, the strong shoulders, the faux pockets. The pattern is from the later part of WW2, with the focus on the military-inspired shoulders. It’s economy standard, i.e. no seam allowance, no facing pieces provided, instructions printed on the back of the packet.

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Ouch, this pattern was hard to put together.  The instructions consist of two sentences, basically: sew the pocket flaps on, sew the side seams together, attach the collar, set in the sleeves, face the edges. Not a pattern for the faint-hearted!

And it complemented perfectly! The length hit me where it should (just above my waist) and the fit was so good that I didn’t need to make any adjustments. The judges must have liked it too, as my partner and I also won the ‘Best Dressed Couple’ competition.

If you’d like to read more, or see photos from the Fifties Fair, just head on over to my blog

A Completely Reversible 1930′s Silk Brassiere

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Recently I’ve been on a complete lingerie sewing bender! I made a silk crepe de chine bra and was so delighted with the comfort and luxury of it that I decided to host a sew-along and make a few more.

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I started with the fabric from an old pair of silk charmeuse pajama pants that hadn’t survived my restless sleeping for long, and then found a lovely black silk blouse at a thrift shop for the lining (can you tell my fabric order was woefully late in arriving?).

For the pattern, I used my 1930′s French Brassiere reproduction pattern and I couldn’t be happier with how well this bra fits!

I’m a huge fan of using historically accurate sewing and embellishment techniques so I included a few tutorials on adding spiderweb silk roses and French knots, covered truing darts, adding straps and closure options, and voila! A completely reversible silk bra!

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Depending on the top I’m wearing, I can wear the bra in blue or black to suit my fashion needs and if I wear a really low-cut top (not that I have so many of those) the rosettes and French knots are a lovely little accent to peak out of my neckline.

If you would like to join in (it’s never to late and I’m always happy to answer questions!) or if you would just like to learn a few bra sewing techniques, you can find every step of the sew-along here, on my blog A Few Threads Loose.

Happy Sewing!

Anna Signature

 

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