1950s | Dresses

Advance 8574

November 15, 2011

UPDATE:: I made up the dreaded muslin top. Not that I didn’t trust my measurements (I totally did),  I just really didn’t believe them. However, it fits. The size 10 dress was rocking a 7 inch ease. Yup, so now of course it’s just a tad big, 2-3 inches is a good ease in fitted but 4 inches is just okay. the sleeves are long!! so I have to nip those in and then hem it ( i made the whole dress, ugh, I’m such an overachiever). It’s still super rough, i didn’t do anything with the seams but it was good practice. i think I’m still in awe of how much ease there is. i mean, 7 inches is bordering on wearing a grocery bag for a supposedly fitted dress. I will absolutely be making another in a finished form, it went together “sew easy”  just as it stated. I’m still not digging the gathered waist but it’s growing on me.

Advance 8574F.jpg (http://vintagepatterns.wikia.com/wiki/Advance_8574)

Hey ya’ll! I’m in need of some help. I’m just about to cut this pattern and I’m nervous. The pattern I have is a size 10 (31-24-33). The 24 inch waist is clearly not going to fit (but the breast part will sadly enough), but after measuring and taking into account the darts and lowering the SA to .5 inches from 5/8 inches, my 27 inch waist should have 4 inches of ease. Does this sound like it could be a possibility? The picture looks mighty fitted and I can’t get over the fact that they inserted approximately 7 inches of ease in the original pattern for a 24 inch waist. Am I missing something in my measuring?

I measured the entire width of the one side of the bodice including the SA at the waistline.

Then took out the width for the dart and the .5″ for SA on each side then multiplied it by two to get a full bodice.

I did the same to the back then added  it to the front to get a total of 31 inches.

Voila right? Oy, I feel like a headache is coming on. And BTW I’m not going to make a muslin, I live dangerously.


  1. Hi! first of all I suggest you NOT to cut your pattern, I mean, copy the pattern in another paper an THEN you can make all the transformation you need, I think you did the right about adding the inches in the waist, BUT please don’t cut the original pattern! well….that’s what I do, and also suggest you to do a muslim.

  2. I have found that different era’s had different wear ease and most need adjustments… remember, those drawings are SO not based on reality, so if you’re secure in your math, then go for it! Altho’ I’m a muslin maker myself; it wouldn’t hurt to grab a sheet from the thrift store and test that bodice. :^)

  3. Did you take the front in to account? Is there a built in placket or anything? If not, are there additional seams at cf for attaching the facing that need to be taken into account? You’ve prob. already checked all this, but just in case….

  4. from my experience, most patterns tend to have a lot of ease. i’ve definitely sewn up 24″ waist patterns that were too big for my 27″ waist. you’re probably accurate with your measurements, but i strongly encourage you to make a quick bodice muslin just to be sure 🙂

  5. I live for ease in secondhand patterns. I too have got away with patterns a size or too smaller from the Sally’s. Which is as stated a great place to get the ugliest sheet in the world to cut up. Its only for the bodice after all, not the whole dress.

  6. you guys are killing me with this muslin business! but i ended up taking your most excellent advice and made a ‘wearable muslin’ out of a crazy polka dot fabric. its a navy cotton with micro polka dots in groups of three’s like little triangles. it kind of gives me a seizure looking at it but if it works then i’ll complete it and wear it too.

    @AJA, i did take into account the front facing, (so easy too, no big placket or anything, just a simple facing). I just keep thinking that 7 inches of ease is more typical of a 60s simplicity pattern not a 50s advance with all their corsets and skin squishing underthings. but once i cut it out, it does look like it is going to fit despite my misgivings. i should get the top sewn up tonight and i think i’ll do pleats like in the above post about the chicken dress instead of a gathered waist. it should be much less bulky and more flattering.

  7. You know, I did last week a Simplicity 50’s pattern, the same size than you, BUT it result very big!!, I had modified the waist to my actual size but when it was finished it was very very big, then I used the fabric ripper and cut the inches I have added to the waist BUT however it is very big. I haven’t posted about it but perhaps tomorrow I’ll do it. So I am very confused with vintage sizes…….but I have read they have different ease in the different eras.

  8. From what I can tell, the 1950s were when pattern sizing started getting so inconsistent (though it’s probably even worse now). I haven’t seen seven inches of ease in the waist of a 50s pattern (yet) but I’m sure it’s possible! I like 2-3 inches of ease at the waist in a fitted-waist style … maybe you can check a dress (or better yet, a pattern of a dress you like the fit of) and see how the waist of that one measures up?

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