Still Summer…….

by FiftiesFrocks on March 18, 2012 · 21 comments

in Vintage Sewing

So my New Years resolution was to make one thing a month for myself (and post it on here of course!). Unfortunately this is only my first post this year – which means that I have a little bit of catching up to do.

I made this 1950′s inspired dress from some beautiful cotton fabric that my husband brought back for me from Mexico. I absolutely love the colours and although it’s been a pretty wet and mild summer over here I thought it was just calling to be made into a sundress. The pattern is something I drafted myself. Originally I wanted something very simple so that the fabric was the feature of the dress however I’m not very good at keeping things simple so I went for a cut-out and tie-up back.

To avoid having to wear a bra with this I inserted bra cups between the bodice and lining. I have never done this before and let me tell you it is something that I will do to all my strappy dresses in the future. It’s very easy to do and so much more comfortable than wearing a strapless bra. Plus no accidental straps slipping out (maybe I’m just old fashioned but I HATE my bra straps showing).

For all you Sydneysiders interested this photo was taken at the Rock n’ Roll markets in Tempe. It’s a great day out full with live music, all things rockabilly and many stalls. I haven’t been in about a year but will be at the next one for sure.

Happy Sewing Everyone!


This post was written by...

– who has written 6 posts on

I'm a gal who loves both the fashion of the 1950's and sewing. I can think of nothing better than spending a day sewing a great new frock then spending the night with my lovely husband and wonderful friends wearing my newest creation and having a blast.

FiftiesFrocks's posts / FiftiesFrocks's website

{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

Tina March 18, 2012 at 8:28 pm

It sounds lovely, friend! However, there is no picture attached to your post…


FiftiesFrocks March 18, 2012 at 8:55 pm

Thanks Tina – I am a little forgetful! It’s all fixed now


Jeanne Marie March 18, 2012 at 9:57 pm

Phenomenal job. Beautiful dress! You were so right to let the fabric do the talking. Mad pattern drafting skills as well.


Anna March 18, 2012 at 10:31 pm

It’s so pretty! I like simple with a little detail, so I really like the tie in the back. I’d love to hear more about putting the bra cups in! I’ll have to look up a tutorial.


Bonita March 18, 2012 at 10:48 pm

~ * ♥ * ~

Wow, what a stunning dress! The fabric and pattern are perfect together, you did an amazing job. ;D

bonita of Depict This!
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Katherine March 18, 2012 at 10:58 pm

Love it – simple with an element of surprise :) The bra cups were a great idea – straps peeking out would ruin the look.


Tina March 18, 2012 at 11:02 pm

So glad you fixed it! This is such a lovely dress–and your hair is divine as well!


BobbinBombshell March 18, 2012 at 11:14 pm

You look adorable! The dress looks wonderful on you, great job!


Ange March 19, 2012 at 12:21 am

Just beautiful, and the fabric does speak for itself.

I love the fullness of the skirt too, really suits you. I await your next project!


Anthea March 19, 2012 at 3:24 am

I love this dress and the fabric. And i’m really curious about how to insert the bra cups.


Jenni March 19, 2012 at 7:12 am

Beautiful! I love the back details!


Marie March 19, 2012 at 8:59 am

Absolutely gorgeous dress!!!


Kristin March 19, 2012 at 11:16 am

You are adorable and your dress is as well!


Anni March 19, 2012 at 1:58 pm

This is stunning! I love the tie-up back, so gorgeous! And the fabric is beautiful. :)


Adele March 19, 2012 at 8:41 pm

wow that is sooo stunning! love the fabric and the colour and the design. Are you wearing a petticoat or is it sitting out so beautifully on its own? How lucky you are to have a husband that buys you fabric for a gift.. it would never cross my hubby’s mind!


FiftiesFrocks March 19, 2012 at 9:32 pm

Thanks everyone for the lovely comments! To answer your questions:

Yes there is a rather large petticoat underneath this dress to help it sit out nicely.

As for the bra cups – this is something I just decided to do. I’m sure there’s a proper way to do it but I just made it up as I went along. First point was to make sure I did the fitting of the toile with the bra cups just sitting on my body so I got the right shape. I always line my dresses to the waist (in cotton for summer). After attaching the lining to the bodice at the neck and armholes I tacked the bra cups to the lining where they seemed to fit best. I then tried the dress on and adjusted slightly the position of the cups. I then just machined the cups to the lining. I attached the lining to the bodice at the side seams to help keep the lining in place then I finished the dress as I normally would.

So I hope that might explain a little of my process (if I haven’t just confused you!) I think it was a lot easier to do than my description. I will try and remember to take photos next time I am using this method so that I can show you properly.


SueC March 19, 2012 at 11:02 pm

Your dress is great – love the fabric. I went to those markets on Sunday and had a great time. Scored a couple of bargains too! It was great to see the ladies from Bexterity – must get to their shop soon – and Pia Anderson had a stall there too. I recognised a few people who are always at the 50s Fair at Seidler House too. A great day out – where else can you dance to live bands in the daytime?


Michelle March 20, 2012 at 10:24 am

This dress is gorgeous! I love the idea of inserting bra cups between the lining and fabric. I hate having to fuss with straps too! Fantastic job with this!


ooobop March 20, 2012 at 6:44 pm

This is absolutely beautiful. I love how you drafted the back and the fabric is to die for!


Anne March 21, 2012 at 2:09 pm

wow this is the most beautiful dress I ever saw en that fabric to die for!!!


Laurel April 12, 2012 at 2:12 pm

This dress is lovely! Great job on the back :)


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