Although I’ve worked in theatre for years, I’ve recently started acting – and when you do community theatre, you are often asked to scrounge up your own costumes for shows. Especially when the director knows that you are a costume designer professionally. 🙂 So when my husband and I were cast in a local production of ‘Miracle on 34th Street’, I got busy!
Although we’re setting the play in the later 40’s, this 1943 Vintage Vogue pattern really jumped out at me as being perfect for the character of ‘Shellhammer’ – a Macy’s department store employee. I THOUGHT I was going to have to do a lot of drafting the pattern up (based on the size chart on the back of the pattern), and since the pattern is out of print I couldn’t just go out and buy the next set of sizes. But knowing that there’s a lot of ease in these things, I decided to just cut the largest size and do a toile, to see what happened.
Glad I did the toile – because the dress ended up actually almost fitting perfectly, straight out of the box (so to speak). I had to take in the shoulders a touch (I always have to), nip in the waist (my waist to hip ratio is above average), and raise the bodice seams a touch – but otherwise, perfect.
I’ve been VERY pleased with the pattern – it’s not an easy one, but the directions are excellent. If you follow step by step, and do exactly what they tell you to do (even if you’re scratching your head while you do it), it all falls into place beautifully. I decided to under stitch the bodice detailing rather than topstitching it – but that’s the only thing that changed. Lots of vintage sewing techniques – pattern pieces topstitched on top of other pieces. It’s more like building a dress than sewing it together!
Done in a lovely tweedy brown wool.