A housedress from Deacdes of Style

by Isis

in 1940s,Dresses,Vintage Sewing


This summer I completed the housedress from Decades of Style, a project I started more than a year ago.

The pattern
The pattern is a reproduction pattern from 1944. I actually ran across the original pattern at one point and the original had another sleeves option. This pattern however only contains the short wide sleeves. It has a princess cut, a square necklines, buttons down the front and diamond shapes pockets. It comes in nine sizes.

The layout was very clear and it was easy to cut out and sew. I was a bit apprehensive as a princess cut rarely works for my figure, but there is an extra bust dart that helps to shape that area, so it worked out surprisingly well.

My adaptions
I did several. I omitted the ric-rac braid and I also changed the shape on the pockets. I kept the square necklines, but I didn’t finished the same way as the pattern suggested. One thing I noticed when I finally started on the project again was that I had added some girth since I cut it out. It simply wouldn’t work to overlap the fronts for a button closure. I was thinking of putting in a zipper, but then I realized that the dress was actually wide enough to pull over my head. Having recently purchased to authentic 40’s housedresses that both are pulled over the head, I didn’t feel that that was too much cheating. However, if I ever need it, it’s easy to open the front seam and put in buttons.

Slightly wrinkly after a very hot day.

I made it out of fine cotton and it turned out to be a very light and comfortable summer dress for hot days. Nothing fancy, but perfectly wearable outside your home. I have some fabric left, so I think I will make a belt to give the dress a bit more shape. In retrospect I ought to have fiddled a bit more with the fit around the bust as it looks slightly wonky there. However, I really liked working with this pattern and I think it ought to be fairly easy to make sleeve and neckline variation.

X-posted at my own blog

This post was written by...

– who has written 7 posts on WeSewRetro.com.

Who am I? Happily growing older and trying to have as much fun in the meantime. Lives in the vicinity of Stockholm, mainly ruled by five cats. Sewing makes me happy, so I try to do it every day. Writes about the 18th century and various other sewing projects in Isis’ Wardrobe and about creating a 1940’s wardrobe in Fashionably Forties.

Isis's posts / Isis's website

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

LadyD August 9, 2012 at 4:40 am

Looks like a comfy summer dress.

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Mrs. Moe August 9, 2012 at 12:39 pm

I love this pattern! I have made three dresses out of it so far and it is so comfortable and surprisingly flattering considering the princess seams. I put zippers down the front in all three that I made. It ends up looking very authentic like so many house dresses of that era. This is a really nice version you’ve made. Love the fabric choice and it fits you very well!

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