1940s | 1950s

McCall 7184 and I need a little help!

September 26, 2015

Hello ladies,

last week I finally had some time to replace my lost blouse (don’t ask me where it went. I lost it during the move which probably means I accidentally threw it in the “donate”-clothing pile πŸ™ ) and this is the result!



Simple white batist (I think it’s rayon in english? ), some sort of thin cotton for blouses and summer dresses, buttons from my stash aaaaand some spit I guess? ;’D


The skirt is also made by me.

this2If you’d like to sew this blouse as well, keep in mind that the collar doesn’t exactly fit. You either have to stuff all the width into the neckhole, which is possible, I tried, or you simply have to sew the collar a little shorter. Both works and to be honest, sewing the collar shorter is a lot easier and doesn’t mess up the overall look.

Now to the part where I need your help.

I used the same blouse pattern to make this dress. At first it went all smooth until I realised I forgot the piping to break up the pattern. The pattern itself is very overwhelming so I need some tipps what would help to break up the pattern. I thought about french pockets on the bust, some belt loops and cuffs (which aren’t attached yet as you can see) in the blue color of the fabric. Also matching buttons and I would use the blue fabric (which I have yet to purchase) to make a belt.

DSCF4691 DSCF4690 DSCF4689 DSCF4688


Any other ideas? I’m open for every suggestion!

Also, sorry for the lack of a nice hairdo. It’s saturday and I can’t be bothered as I feel a little sick.


Greetings from Germany!


  1. What a great blouse and dress! What is the pattern?

    In your photos, it seems to me that it’s the fit of the sleeves that make this dress overwhelming; their volume overshadows the great shaping through the waist. I suspect a solid colored cuff plus perhaps a matching over-collar panel would help; but if you don’t want to add contrast, you might consider either narrowing the sleeves for a more fitted kimono style, or shortening them so that they end above your waist, thus drawing attention back to the dress’ waist.

    Great projects, both of them. And I love that windmill fabric. πŸ™‚

  2. Finding a nice trim and putting it round the collar and button panel?
    I love the pattern! And how you’ve interpreted it. I don’t think it will take much work to make the dress ‘sing’ πŸ™‚

  3. I agree with Stephanie above, the fullness of the sleeves, doesn’t help. I think solid blue cuffs and a solid blue collar and facings would help too. I think the dress shape is cute and so is the pattern on the fabric. I hope you show us what you end up doing with the dress which is a great autumn season style

  4. You could do a contrast cuff and collar. Or simply do contrast buttons. Or a nice braid trim or single fold bias tape top stitched along the edges of the dress would look nice too. White would be a great contrast color and would most definitely keep the vintage look intact.

  5. I think buttons will help. Blue?

    I’m actually OK with the pattern itself but I agree that the cut of the bodice is not working. It looks far too big for you. I’m having a hard time telling what shape the sleeves are, exactly, but would it be possible, say, to either taper them or gather them into smaller cuffs so there would be a little less bodice overall?

  6. What a great dress – and it looks so comfy! Super hΓΌbsch! If you really want to – hum – sharpen it, I think a shortening of the sleeves to waist level or higher would tie the shape together, and then consider the piping details. You might find that it doesn’t take much after the sleeve alteration, when the fabric is so cool in it self.

  7. The blouse and skirt look great! I agree with you that the dress needs some accents to break up the print. I personally don’t mind the fit with the sleeves. If you narrowed them, you might end up not having enough freedom of movement and there are plenty of period examples of dresses with full(ish) kimono sleeves. However, it does provide that print with a big, uninterrupted surface.
    If you had thought about it earlier, you could have made the facings and collar in blue fabric but as it is now, I think blue buttons would work well. Fairly big ones, I suppose, so they won’t be lost in that print. I actually quite like the look with a not-matching belt. It provides more of a break in the pattern than a blue one would. You could even try taking that further, for example with a red belt (in which case I guess it would be best to make belt loops from the dress fabric)

  8. Reika, I love your blouse ! I am working on a blouse at the moment too, and have been dreaming of making it into a shirt waist dress.

    I think maybe white buttons could work well, and with a white belt could break up the pattern all with a vintage feel. I love the shape in the photo of the back of the dress, great shape.

    And yes, please share your finished photos!

  9. Hi, great projects! I can see why you just ran ahead and didnt pipe the collar and placket, the fabric is so great. I think it would look great with piping in black, or a ruby/burgundy red. If you cant bear to unpick it, then use bias binding around the neck and front. And match the buttons to the trim. I think contrasting edges would help detract from the volume of the sleeves. Test it out first! Look forward to seeing what happens….

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