1950s | Dresses | Vintage Sewing

A 1950’s Late Summer Dress

August 29, 2015

Hello again! I’m back with another me made dress, and this time instead of the 1930’s, I have jumped to the 1950’s!


I have made many summer dresses over the years, but I tend to always stick with a wiggle/pencil skirt shape. I wanted to branch out this summer and add a few full skirted dresses to my wardrobe! To make this dress I used a basic kimono sleeved bodice pattern and a full circle skirt. The dress is made from a lightweight cotton print from India (ordered from a now defunct shop on etsy) and is lined with off white cotton. I hemmed both the sleeves and the skirt hem with self bias tape I made from the same print fabric. I usually like to use bias tape folded over for an invisible hem on circle skirts but with the print being so busy on this dress I figured I could get away with just a bias tape hem. It feels a bit lazy to hem with bias tape, even though it takes some effort to make the tape itself!


Sadly I forgot to put on a belt with the dress before I took these photos, it looks even better with a thin black belt! I am excited to accessorize this dress with other colors in the future even if it looks good with basic black. I think red could be a fun pop against the neutral palette! I made one other dress this summer with this same exact pattern, only in a different tropical leaf and parrot print! You can see more of this dress and its tropical twin on my blog The Closet Historian.


  1. i really love the neckline and sleeves. i swear i read both of your blog entries, but could you tell me what pattern you used? thanks!

    1. Thank you Holly! I am sorry to say I made the pattern myself so you didn’t miss anything there just wasn’t a pattern to be found! A pattern like this is relatively easy to draft yourself if you have a simple dress bodice pattern you like already you can modify. I looked at the backs of vintage patterns (via pinterest or etsy) to see how the pieces were shaped for vintage kimono sleeves and then through trial and error, edited my basic bodice till I had something that worked. The skirt portion is just a basic circle skirt.

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