Shocking Pink!

by Laura Mae on March 13, 2012 · 10 comments

in 1960s,Dresses

As Mad Men fever is sweeping the country, so many people are going 1960s crazy, myself included.

I have plenty of patterns to work with, but for some reason this newly purchased Simplicity pattern was calling my name.  I cannot find an actual date on the pattern, but it seems to be a late 1950s or early 1960s style.  Does anyone know exactly when this was first published?  It was a factory-folded beauty – this vintage pattern is in the best condition I have ever come across; someone obviously took wonderful care of her.

When the pink silk/wool blend showed up at my door a couple of years ago, I was convinced that I would never use the fabric.  However, my new pattern needed a fabric with some body, so I pulled it out.  Sometimes things are just meant to be!

I have been in the habit of adding a strip of silk organza to my zipper openings as of late, and it really stabilizes the fabric for sewing.  I would highly recommend the technique.

Normally, I make self-fabric belts for all of my vintage dress reproductions, however, I thought that would be a little too much pink.  I found the black beaded belt at a local thrift store last year and it works perfectly!

More pictures may be found over on my blog, Lilacs & Lace.

This post was written by...

– who has written 27 posts on

I adore sewing and knitting, mostly vintage or vintage-inspired patterns.

Laura Mae's posts / Laura Mae's website

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

parismegs March 14, 2012 at 3:44 am

WOW – that is just great!!!


Kelly March 14, 2012 at 7:33 am

That dress is truly darling!


FiftiesFrocks March 14, 2012 at 8:51 am

Wow this pattern is great. And you’ve done a stunning job with your hair!


Laceflower March 14, 2012 at 12:02 pm

Your work is exquisite, and the fabric is perfect. You look wonderful.


two birds March 14, 2012 at 12:58 pm

absolutely gorgeous! it’s like something off the runway!


Jessamyn March 14, 2012 at 1:41 pm

Congratulations on managing to carry off that hot-pink dress! Not everybody could do it, and you’re doing it with a ton of style.

I would date the pattern to 1956-58. Aside from the fact that the broken-backed look in posing was easing up around 1960, the coat is a ’50s style. Compare with this 1952 model:

However, I don’t think your pattern can be earlier than 1956 because the pattern-envelope style changed that year.

The dress design is a little more up-to-date than the coat, and I’m seeing something similar as late as 1959:
…although the big difference is the cut-in-one short sleeve vs. the raglan sleeve; the former was a holdover from the ’40s and pretty much gone by the ’60s but the raglan persisted well into the ’60s. Also, the hem on the 1959 dress is shorter than on your pattern. And finally, the hair is poufing out toward the ’60s bouffant, as opposed to the close-to-the-head styles of your pattern.

All that said, two caveats: One, older styles continued to be carried for older ladies. Two, did you check the pattern instructions for a date? Sometimes it’s not on the envelope but it is on the sheet.


Isis March 14, 2012 at 2:47 pm

Very elegant!


Time and again March 14, 2012 at 3:34 pm

That is stunning! Love the fabric and the style!


Katrina - Edelweiss Patterns March 16, 2012 at 10:35 pm

So cute! That big bow is darling, and I think bright pink is a very nice color on you. You must have a closet full of your vintage dresses now!

Happy sewing,



Anne March 17, 2012 at 8:57 am

WOW so cute, very inspirational!!!


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