Gertie’s shirtwaist dress

This is my first make from Gertie’s New Book For Better Sewing, which I bought as soon as it was out but had yet to make anything from. I used a red cotton with a woven check pattern. For anyone considering making this but worried about fabric quantities, I got this out of 2.1m of 60″ wide when the requirements say 3m! The only pieces I missed out were the back yoke lining (I cut a small neck facing instead) and the pockets, which could easily be made from a different fabric anyway. So in all I would think you could easily get it out of 2.5m or less.



The only alteration I made was to the shoulder width. I took the excess off the back shoulder edge only, then gathered the front in to match it, creating an extra gathered detail at the shoulders.

I used little black buttons with a swirl pattern. I bought a ton of these in two sizes I love them that much! It can be hard to find new buttons with a vintage appropriate look sometimes.

All in all I love this dress, and will definitely make it again. It was quite quick and easy to put together and comfy to wear all day.

Hats off to my not yet three-year-old for taking the photos.


• Meet the Author • Ginny

6 comments… add one

  • I would love to wear this dress, and it looks so beautiful on you! Hats off to you for finding a way to sew with a three-year-old around.

  • Absolutely charming! This is going on my must-sew list. You did a fantastic job with the plaid as well.

  • So cute! Great job!

  • The buttons are the perfect accent. Great job!

  • Oh wow, this is just lovely. Mine didn’t turn out so well, I’m in the process of procrastinating about taking it apart and starting again. And hats off to your 3 yo a photographer in the making!

  • Love your shirtwaist dress. This is one of my favorite styles to wear. The buttons are charming.


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