1940s | Dresses | Vintage Sewing

Sew For Victory Sewalong

March 6, 2013

I decided to join in on the “Sew For Victory” Sewalong at Lucky Lucille.  I’m a little late to the game, but figured that not only would I do my best to finish the dress in time, but that I would make not one but two Forties dresses!  I may turn out to have bitten off more than I can chew, but we’ll see!

This will be the first dress I make:


I’ll be making the short-sleeved dress on the left and will be omitting the jacket for now, although I have enough fabric to make both…we’ll see.

As the pattern envelope was water damaged and the size had worn away, I made a muslin of the pattern to see how much adjusting I would have to do.  I went into detail on this on a rather long-winded post on my blog, but I’ll save you from all my nattering here – in short, it turned out to be about one size too small and aside from that it only required my usual Short Back and Full Arm adjustments.  I was able to omit the Full Bust Adjustment due to the gathers on the bodice.



I find this pattern really interesting because the gathers at the bust and on the sleeve are just sliced out of the fabric, gathered and sewn back in, rather than pieced separately and added.  I think this would be an interesting way to add pleat detailing to a dress as well…I may have to experiment at some point!

I’ll post again when I’ve got everything cut out and pieced together.  I think I’ll be quite pleased with this dress!

This will be the second dress I make…if I don’t run out of time.  I’ll be making the dress on the right, in the vintage Seersucker you see below it.  Fingers crossed!

Happy Sewing!!!



Elle Buckle Vintage










  1. Beautiful patterns. I’m making a dress with that type of gathering below the bust too, though I made the pattern myself. It’s a pretty easy design feature to add using the slash and spread technique. I love the sleeve detail on this too. I look forward to seeing the finished dress!

    1. It is an easy design feature, isn’t it Ginny? I’m surprised that this is the first time I’ve come across it in a vintage pattern. I haven’t ventured into drafting my own patterns yet and I’m always in awe of those who have!

  2. All of that is utterly devine and I can’t to see what your final garment(s) look like, but Holy Heck! I can’t even handle the cut out detail on that bottom Hollywood Pattern!! I absolutely must figure out how to get a pattern like that or draft my own. Thanks for sharing, I am so inspired now 😀

    1. The cut out is cute isn’t it raywuwei? It makes the dress look like it’s actually two separate pieces. Let me know if you want me to scan and send the instructions or the line drawing on the back of the pattern to you…it may make drafting your own easier.

  3. I’m still trying to visualise how the one-piece bodice and sleeves work… Do you end up with a single very large piece with the top sticking out miles beyond the ungathered waist level?

    1. Hi Harriet,
      Yes, there’s a rectangular panel that extends down beyond the sleeve cuff that you slice and gather up and then attach to the remaining sleeve. For the bodice, the piece to be gathered extends on an angle past the bustline. It’s also sliced and gathered then attached to the waistline.

  4. Love both styles. I’ve seen that cut-in-one gathering detail used on a 20’s dress at the hip line before but nice to see how it works on the bust of your 40’s dress. Looking forward to seeing the finished pieces!

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