1950s | Dresses | Vintage Sewing

Burning the Roses Red ~ A Saga of Butterick B5708

By on December 3, 2015

Butterick B5708 | Lavender & Twill

Butterick B5708 | Lavender & Twill
Butterick B5708 | Lavender & Twill
Butterick B5708 | Lavender & Twill
Butterick B5708 | Lavender & Twill

I just have to say… I wanted to burn this dress sooo badly….The only reason I kept pushing on with it is that I didn’t have anything to wear to the Aussie Vintage Girls Meetup, and you know ~ that would have been a disaster….

A disaster I tell you! Oh wait… First world vintage girl problems again.

Okay, okay, not so much a big deal, except when it was.

b5708
I started with this lovely pattern, Butterick B5708 and rated at “Easy” I felt sure I couldn’t go wrong! It was my fourth make for my Vintage Sewing Pattern Pledge for the year {one, two, three}, and I was thinking it should be fairly simple.

Alas, if only I’d read the multiple reviews of this pattern online ~ I think this one explains it best ~ I probably would have changed my mind!! (ಠ_ಠ)

So I cut the pattern, did my do, and seriously, everything was going pretty well. I had a few of my usual frustrations in sewing the bodice to the skirt ~ why do I always get the bodice caught up in the waist seam? Why??  (╯°□°)╯彡 ┻━┻

But I was about 95% done on the dress when I decided I’d better try it on. *cue ominous spooky music*

So I slipped it on, and the world ended. *ahem

My world ended.  (┛◉Д◉)┛彡┻━┻

The bodice was ALL kinds of wrong, with wrinkles going every which way, and compressing my bust so much that it looked like I had squished marshmallows instead, of ~ well, you know!

I literally freaked out, cried, ranted, raved, and promptly ate half a block of chocolate. Yes. Chocolate.  .·´¯`(>▂<)´¯`·.

Then I left it for the day. I was DONE. I was *THIS* close to burning the darn thing and turning up naked. Hahaha…

No, really….

The next morning I took a deep breath. I thought I knew what went wrong. I’d forgotten to do an FBA. Silly me just assumed that because I was doing a larger size to fit my bust that it would fit. Totally stu-pid!

I’d forgotten that although this was previously a vintage pattern where technically cutting the larger size for the bust would probably have worked, this was a re-release of a vintage pattern, which means it has also been fiddled with to meet ‘today’s industry standards’ ~ i.e. a C cup bust. Nowhere near close to my size.  Phooey.  {Today’s industry standards are totally wack btw! I have less problems with vintage patterns than I do modern ones.}

So I went back, unpicked the lining {yes, the darn thing is lined and that was already in!}, unpicked the bodice, and half unpicked the zipper.  Then I cut the lining and bodice up ~ added bust darts from the side seams to the point of bust, added extra fabric under the bust in the gather point {which in hindsight I may not have needed. Oh well.}, cut another toile from the hack pattern, made that up, thought it might work, cut my fashion fabric again, cut my lining again, sewed up the fashion fabric, sewed it back onto the dress… Then it was bed time.

The next day was Thursday and I had one day to get it done.  (″・ิ_・ิ)っ

I sewed the lining back together, then sewed it onto the fabric again, tried the dress on again, realised that the bottom half of the lining was messing up the bottom half of the the bodice by creating needless wrinkles underneath the fabric that showed through, hacked off the bottom half of the lining, overlocked the bottom of the lining to the midriff seam of the bodice, sewed the lining down to the fashion fabric on the bodice with some top stitching, struggled to make the armpits look nice where the lining and fashion fabric where sewn together, failed, hacked at the inside of the dress, sewed some more seams, finished the zipper, decide to sew the hem by machine instead of hand picking because of time, then sewed the hem seam three times around for a deliberate “decorative” look, ruched the front of the bodice to make a sweetheart neckline and pull in the neckline from standing out, then sewed on the pockets, each of them twice because of having to move them around when they didn’t go on correctly the first time. Gave up when one of them was still crooked because running out of the mint green thread I was using.

Deeeeep breath. By this time it was around about seven o’clock in the evening. Then I tried the dress on again. Yay! More room at bust!  BOO!! TOO MUCH FABRIC BETWEEN BUST AND WAIST!!  (ノಠ益ಠ)ノ彡┻━┻  *rage attack* ~ which quickly turned to:

PANIC!   ∑(゜Д゜;)

I quickly skyped my sister to ask for a second opinion and while we were tossing around a. wearing a belt {couldn’t find one that looked good}, or b. sewing up a cummerbund ~ I thought of option c. which was: sew the midriff seam again, pulling in the extra fold of fabric that was wrinkling under the bust. As you might be able to tell ~ this is what I ended up doing.

This had a three-fold effect of curving the midriff seam rather than it being a triangle point as in the illustration of the pattern, gathering in some of the excess fabric causing wrinkles, and lifting the waist to my natural waist because the dress waist was sitting about a centimetre below my real waist which didn’t look the best.

10:00pm that night, and I was finally finished.  (✖ 。 ✖)° ° °

If you are wondering why top half of the bodice is still insanely wrinkled after all that extra work on it ~ well, I was too until I look more closely at the illustration. There are actually wrinkles in the top half of the bodices pictured there too. I think it’s suppose to mimic a sarong look.

I just hate it. I think it looks unsightly, ill-fitting and like a big hot mess. However I can’t fix a design styling, unless I redraft the bodice part entirely. And you know what?  I’m soooo over it….

I don’t think I want to touch this dress again, even to wear it, until some of the trauma of this make has faded from my memory!

Surprisingly enough, even though I did say to The Mister that I didn’t want to touch my sewing machines again for months, I’ve change my mind and I’m already planning to sew parts of my Christmas outfit.   ┬──┬ …ノ( ゜-゜ノ)

I have decided it’s just that particular pattern I can’t stand. Not the sewing.

Though I tell you what, I’ve also decided that sewing is not a relaxing hobby for me. Too stressful for that!

~ Project Details ~

  • Year: A retro re-release of a 1950’s sarong dress pattern
  • Pattern: Butterick B5708
  • Fabric: 4 meters of mint green fabric and 1.5 meters of white fabric with pink roses, 1.5 meters of white linen. From the stash: $13.00 for the fabric
  • Notions: An invisible zip ~ repurposed.
  • Time to complete: One week.
  • Make again? Nope. No, no, no, nope, no, nope. That’s all there is to that.
  • Wear again? Yes. I suppose so. I suppose the dress escapes it’s fiery end….
  • Total Cost:  $13.00 and a block of chocolate. Oh yes, and my sanity. Mustn’t forget that!

If you got through all of that saga ~ well done to you! I hope you never have had to struggle like this with any of your dresses, but if you have ~ you can always share your stories! Any creative “Make Do and Mends” out there? The Mister quoted that to me, and needless to say, I wasn’t particularly impressed at the time… Lol!

xox,

bonita

༺ ♡ ༻

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1940s | Blouses | Vintage Sewing

Adventures in Baby Cord – Simplicity 3688

By on July 15, 2015

A me-made 1940's look created with vintage patterns | Lavender & Twill

Color blocking fun - white, aubergine, grey and blue | Lavender & Twill

1940's vintage style | Lavender & Twill

Gum leaves, a beaded purse, and shoes with bows on them | Lavender & Twill

A daytime 1940's outfit with Simplicity 3688 | Lavender & Twill

Welp, as you might be able to tell ~ simply by the fact that a whole month has gone by without any progress posts on the Sewing All The Things challenge ~ that things have gone a bit squiffy for me recently!

After all the trouble I had with my wrap dress, I was kind of feeling a bit ‘meh’ about sewing and wanted to do something simple. So I picked Advance 3886, and some mauve jersey knit I had in my stash, and went ~ “This should be fairly simple right?” …..

Advance 3886 - vintage 1940's pattern | Lavender & Twill
Ah, about that?

Spoiler alert: it wasn’t!!  ( ̄。 ̄;)

Firstly, I was wrestling with a super stretchy knit fabric with tons of give, and all the pieces I cut ended up being around two inches shorter than the pattern pieces! Which would be okay ~ except for the bodice where it really wasn’t.  I thought I’d have to bin the whole thing, but then I had the dubiously “genius” idea to add an extra piece in at the shoulders to make up for the missing length.

Okay, project saved right?

Nope.

Number one tip for cutting knits? NOTCH OUTWARD NOT IN! All the little “v” cuts I made to mark the seam joins went into the seam allowance, and apparently that makes it super, super hard to make sure the cut is all caught up in the overlocking seam so that there aren’t any holes in your dress.

Really hard.

As in going over the same seam five time in a row hard.

Yikes.

I’ve got to say, that was bad enough, but the lovely gathered detail at the shoulders ~ that really was the last straw.

I tried to follow the instructions, but I don’t know ~ something went wrong somewhere and the ruching just looked… wrong.  So I ripped out the stitches and went “I give up!”.  Hence the overly long story of how July’s dress ended up in a UFO bag on my shelf. Humph.

Then I dusted off my unhappy sewing self and went with a really simple pattern ~ the blouse from Simplicity 3688.

Simplicity 3688 - retro re-release pattern | Lavender & Twill

This pattern, thankfully, was actually easy! Score! (ง •̀_•́)ง ☆

I used some pinwale corduroy from my stash in white and aubergine {or eggplant for us Aussies!} and while I don’t know what I was thinking when I bought it {one meter of each color? Really?}, it turned out to be a happy accident because I love how the color blocking turned out with this pattern.

Because the blouse construction is so simple, it really lends itself to playing around with your fabrics. Also, it’s a fun pattern to sew. I really enjoyed the process of putting it together. The sleeve heads are super cute with darts to add structure, rather than typical gathers, and the yoke section with bias binding around the neck line looks nice.

This time I cut the blouse to fit my nursing bust size rather than attempting an FBA, and while that helps with the chest squashing problem, I can see that the fit across the shoulders is too big. And I had to run two one inch darts down the back of the blouse to take in four inches of excess fabric from the back. I know the blouse is supposed to be “blousy” in fit, but there’s cute puffy and then there’s way-too-much-fabric-to-tuck-in puffy!

I paired the blouse with my grey scratchy wool skirt ~ yes, that’s it’s name ~ and thankfully in winter, stocking seem to negate the scratch.   (¬ ᴗ ¬)  I really like the combination of the simple colours, although *gasp* I just realised I don’t have any patterns in this outfit at all!  This must be a first!

Now at last I can mark another pattern off the Vintage Sewing Pattern Pledge ~ I have three down, {one, two and this one obviously!} and two to go. While my sewing schedule may be all out of wack {annoying my OCD list ticking self}, I am definitely learning things along the way. We are getting there!  ヾ(^-^)ノ

~ Project Details ~

  • Year: A retro re-release of a 1940’s suit pattern
  • Pattern: Simplicity 3688
  • Fabric: 2 metres of pinwale corduroy; 1 meter of white, 1 meter of aubergine. From the stash: $7.00 a meter
  • Notions: A button and a hook and eye for closing the back slit
  • Time to complete: Two weeks
  • Make again? Yes. I think this blouse is pretty, and I’m keen to play around with some different fabrics using this pattern. It’s easy to make, comfortable to wear and has a nice authentic 1940’s look.
  • Wear again? For sure! I need some more 1940’s separates, and this is a good start.
  • Total Cost:  $14.00, but that was ages ago. Stash busting ftw!

xox,

bonita

༺ ♡ ༻

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1940s | Dresses | Vintage Sewing

A ‘Round the House Wrap Dress

By on June 1, 2015
Simplicity 2275, dated 1948 | Lavender & Twill
Stitching challenge 2015 for a vintage wardrobe | Lavender & Twill
Vintage - around the house - mama style | Lavender & Twill
Hunter green vintage 1940s reproduction heels | Lavender & Twill
Easy 1940s style | Lavender & Twill
Pin curls, vintage, and 1940s frocks | Lavender & Twill
*whew*

Am I ever so glad that this dress is done! I have never had so much trouble putting together a sewing project before ~ not because it didn’t come together easily enough, that wasn’t the problem ~ it was because I just couldn’t get the dang thing to sit right! (┛◉Д◉)┛*rage*

I suppose this is where experienced seamstresses look pointedly at their muslins and toiles, then at me, then back at the neat little muslin sitting on the dress form…..

Yah.  Ain’t nobody got time for that! Least ways, I don’t.

I found out that the bodice of my 90% completed dress was not fitting correctly because of my nursing bust size, even though I’d measured the pattern and thought that it would fit. The design of the back of the neck was not working for me either. It wouldn’t sit right no matter how I adjusted it ~ up or down!

Getting the dress to fit required a lot of what my coding Mister calls “hacking”. In my sewing world however, hacking involves taking a sharp pair of scissors to already sewn seams and hacking the bajeebies out of the fabric along strategically drawn chalk lines.

I cut roughly two inches out from the back of the neck, and lopped off three to seven inches from the sleeves, then hemmed the skirt up by five inches. It was a risk that the whole thing would fall apart if I snipped too much, or in the wrong place, but it paid off as the dress sits much better around the neckline now.
It isn’t all weird and bunchy like it was before. I don’t quite know what was happening, but the back of the dress sat really high up on the back of my neck, and it was making the darts sit in the wrong place, which was making the bodice puff up really strangely above the bust.

Of course, getting it to work took a lot of extra fiddling, which took a lot of extra time, and I ended up taking way too long on this project. Plus, I’ve been sick as a dog for the last week, which means May is officially up and I didn’t manage to get my other project ~ a winter blouse ~ done this month.  (TT ^ TT)

So, only one more project ticked off the great Sewing All the Things challenge of 2015, but at least it actually happened because I was worried there for a moment that I would end up having to toss the whole dress.

The source of much trouble! ~


Next question ~ does anyone want to purchase this pattern?  It will come with all the original pieces of the pattern, the original instructions {taped, because they are falling apart}, the original envelope, and also a copy of the bodice, sleeve, facings, waist inserts, tie, and pocket pattern pieces all traced onto Polytrace {similar to Swedish Tracing Paper ~ it’s a soft, woven fabric-like paper}. Basically, I traced off everything but the skirt, so you can work straight from the pattern copy.

If you would like to buy the pattern, along with the the Polytrace copies for $20.00 AUD, please email me with your Paypal address and mailing address, and I can send off an invoice which will also include whatever the P+P will cost.

~ Project Details ~

  • Year: 1948
  • Pattern: Simplicity 2275
  • Fabric: 2 1/2 metres of red and green sprig floral of poly-cotton{?}. I have no idea about the fibre content of this fabric as my Grandmother gave it to me.
  • Notions: None, is a wrap dress.
  • Time to complete: Three weeks
  • Make again? Nope. I really don’t want to make this dress again. It was just such a hassle to get it working properly that I really don’t want to go through all of that again. I like the dress, but not that much.
  • Wear again? I will, but I think it’ll probably be in my “around the house, running errands, going to playgroup, etc” wardrobe. Which is okay with me because I need more vintage around the house clothes anyway.
  • Total Cost:  $0.00 ~ yay for stash busting!

Have any of you had sewing dramas with almost-but-not-quite-failure projects before?  Would you seam rip to make it work, or try ‘hacking’ it up? Plus, how great are my new shoes ~ right?  (ノ ゜ω゜)ノ

xox,

bonita


༺ ♡ ༻


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Accessories | Giveaway | Vintage Sewing

A Tutorial ~ DIY Vintage Hair Tie

By on May 2, 2015

Remember the vintage styled hair tie I debuted in this outfit post?  Today I want to show you how to make your own version of this cute hair accessory! This tutorial is great if you have a hankering to try sewing, and would like a simple, easy project to begin with.

If you already have sewing skills, you can just download the free pattern for The Vintage Bow Hair Tie and jump right in!  {Note: You still might want to skip down to the end for the giveaway however!   ♡~ (^ ε ^) }

VBHT-Tut_21

Materials you will need:

  • Fabric:  92cm (36.5”) x 12cm (4.75”)  or  46cm (18.5”) x 24cm (9.5”)
  • Sewing Machine
  • Thread to match fabric
  • Needle for hand sewing
  • Fabric Scissors
  • Vintage Bow Hair Tie Pattern
  • Pins

Vintage Bow Hair Tie Pattern:  Download here

VBHT-Pattern_1

How to make your own Vintage Hair Tie:

VBHT-Tut_1

Step One:  Print out Vintage Bow Hair Tie Pattern twice, and cut out pattern pieces. There should be four in all.

VBHT-Tut_2

Step Two:  Join pattern pieces together as indicated.  The broken line tabs should go under the un-broken line tabs.  The last piece of the pattern, the rounded tip piece will have to be upside down to sit correctly.  The pattern should end up looking like a very long canoe!

VBHT-Tut_3

Step Three:  Fold your fabric over and place pattern on top.

VBHT-Tut_4

Step Four:  Slide any excess fabric back under so that the raw edge of the fabric is under the bottom edge of the pattern, and the fold of the fabric under the top edge of the pattern. This way, when you cut the fabric, there will be very little waste.

VBHT-Tut_5

Step Five:  Cut fabric.

(Option): If you have the smaller width of fabric you can ‘piece’ this pattern together by cutting HALF of the pattern TWICE as shown above.

VBHT-Tut_6

You should end up with a piece like the one on top if you cut the whole pattern, or two pieces like the ones on the bottom if you cut half of the pattern twice.

VBHT-Tut_7

Step Six (Option for pieced pattern):  If you have pieced the pattern, put the right side {the bright side of the print} of the fabric together and pin.

VBHT-Tut_8

Step Seven (Option for pieced pattern):  Sew along the straight edge to join the two pieces of fabric together.  Allow 1/4” to 1/2’’” for the seam allowance.

VBHT-Tut_9

Step Eight:  Fold the fabric in half ~ right sides together.

VBHT-Tut_10

VBHT-Tut_16

Step Nine:  Starting at one end, allowing 1/2” for the seam allowance, sew along the outside edge of the fabric.  (Option):  You can sew this seam by machine, or by hand.

VBHT-Tut_11

Step Ten:  Leave a 1 1/2” gap at the opposite end to pull the fabric through the right way.

VBHT-Tut_12

Step Eleven:  Pull the fabric from the inside of the tube, turning it the right way out.

VBHT-Tut_13

Step Twelve:  Press flat with an iron.

VBHT-Tut_14

Step Thirteen:  Tuck the raw edge of the gap in and press.

VBHT-Tut_17

Step Fourteen:  Thread needle, and sew up gap. Start off by passing the needle from inside the fabric tube to the outside, so that the knot end stays hidden inside. You can use the “Stitch in the Ditch” technique to hide your hand sewing, as explained below.

VBHT-Tut_18

The idea behind the “Stitch in the Ditch” technique is to hide your stitches inside the seam, such that you cannot see the stitches once you have finished.  To stitch in the ditch, you pass the needle through the fabric that is tucked INSIDE the gap, and repeat a little further along on the opposite side.  Continue up the sides until the gap is ‘bridged’ by the rows of stitches.

VBHT-Tut_19

The hand sewing sits below the crease made by pressing the raw edges in, and when you pull it tight, it closes the gap and hides the stitches.  Knot your work, and pass the needle down into the seam and out through the fabric. Pull the thread taunt when you snip, and the tail of the thread will pull back and disappear into the inside of your fabric tube.  Invisible stitches!

VBHT-Tut_20

Step Fifteen:  Enjoy your new vintage-inspired hair tie!  A fabulous accessory for those ‘around the house’ days to keep your hair out of your face, or when you are fancied up for day out in your favourite dress.  Make a new one every time you sew up a project and you can have co-ordinated hair and wardrobe!

༺ ♡ ༻

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and have fun making your own vintage hair tie. If you have any questions about anything at all, please don’t hesitate to ask and I’ll do my best to help out.

As always, I’d love to see your creations so please do let me know about them ~ you can share by leaving a comment or link to a blog post, tweet a picture @bjvear or share on Instagram by mentioning @missbjvear, or hashtag #DIYLavenderandTwill so I can take a peek!

VBHT-Tut_21

༺ ♡ ༻

Now for the exciting part:

Giveaway

If you’d like the chance to win this sweet floral print hair tie, check out my blog Lavender & Twill for more details!

 

xox,

bonita

༺ ♡ ༻

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All patterns and instructions copyright to BJVear Studio. Available for personal use only, no commercial rights allowed.

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1940s | Blouses | Mildly Insane Photo | Vintage Sewing

Going Dotty for Spotty Cotton

By on April 28, 2015

1940's blouse made with Simplicity 1590 retro re-release | Lavender & Twill

Full 1940's look for autumn | Lavender & Twill 

Peplum details & box pleats from Simplicity 1590 | Lavender & Twill

Adore platform chunky heels & gloves for a perfect 1940's look | Lavender & Twill

Details of the fabric & buttons for my Simplicity 1590 make | Lavender & Twill

Simplicity 1590 sewn up out of quilting cotton | Lavender & Twill

Ohmygoodnessyouguys! I keep signing myself up for all these sewing challenges ~ and then I don’t know why I am doing this to myself!  (> o <)’

First it was the insane Sewing All The Things idea, then I saw A Stitching Odyssey’sVintage Sewing Pattern Pledge and of course I was all “Oooh! That looks like fun!” so I put my name down:

I, Bonita Vear of Lavender & Twill, pledge to sew at least five vintage or vintage reproduction patterns in 2015 ~ these MUST be patterns that I haven’t used before from my stash!”

Because that fits into my sewing schedule for 2015, right? But then I saw Rochelle’s Spring for Cotton group sew along annndddd ~ BAM! April’s plan for the Simplicity 2275 wrap dress flew out the window {also because I was in the middle of a top secret sewing project that took most of April to get done}.  Hello quick project! This fit in with Brittany’s 40s Fashion Calender challenge for February which I was behind with: sew a 1940’s blouse and turban.

So last Monday I went to Spotlight with a handy Christmas gift card {thank you Mom!} and tried to find the perfect cotton fabric to use for Simplicity 1590, a retro re-release of this simple, but cute 1940’s blouse with a peplum.

1590_TP_EN_H5_U5.indd
~ I hadn’t made this one up yet, but I really liked View A and couldn’t wait to try it! ~

I found the perfect 100% cotton quilting fabric with a really nice ‘hand’ to it. It was soft, and it draped nicely, as well as having this fabulous vintage-looking print in the colours I wanted ~ navy and white.  Well, okay, I wanted navy, white, and red, and ended up with navy, cream, orange, and pink! But it was the closest to what I had pictured in my head and I knew it would suit this project perfectly.

Disaster struck when I reached the cutting counter ~ I needed 1.7 metres of my magical fabric and there was only a little over 1 metre left on the bolt!  Yikes!

The lady at the counter went to see if she could find some more of the fabric, or something similar, while I racked my brains to figure out how to make it work. I knew she wouldn’t find anything as I had already scoured the quilting fabric isle and sure enough, she came back empty handed.  I quickly whipped out my pattern pieces {which I had traced out onto Polytrace so that I didn’t have to cut the pattern tissue} and proceeded to lay my pattern out on the cutting counter!  It just fit ~ but I’d have to make something up for the peplum, which took about 70 centimetres of the 1.7m needed all by itself.

I decided to wing it because I had fallen for this spotty cotton ~ it was “The One” for this pattern ~ sewers, you know what I’m talking about!

It did work, although you’ll notice box pleats at the back of the peplum, rather than gathers. I had much less fabric in the peplum so there really wasn’t any way I was getting gathers out of it. And obviously, I had to nix the matching turban because that just wasn’t going to happen ~ but in the end, I did it!

I squeaked out a blouse that needed 1.7m of fabric from a piddley 1m and managed to fit in a matching vintage styled hair tie instead of the turban.  Which I am calling the “Vintage Bow Hair Tie” pattern. Original. (ง •̀_•́)ง

I think I can hail this 40s Fashion Calender/Spring for Cotton/Vintage Sewing Pattern Pledge project as success ~ one 100% cotton blouse, sewn with 100% cotton thread, and a matching 100% cotton hair tie, also sewn with 100% cotton thread.  A little bit of tweaking here and there, and I couldn’t get 100% cotton buttons, but I’m okay with the ones I picked.   : P   Actually, more than okay, because I’m a little bit dotty over them too….  ❤ ❤ ❤ヽ(*⌒∇⌒*)ノ

The result is that I adore this blouse!  It will definitely be a staple in my wardrobe. All the stress is so worth it in that pivotal moment you see some gorgeous fabric slowly coming together then ~ POW! (ノ◕ヮ◕)ノ*:・゚✧ You have a new garment!

~ Project Details ~

  • Year: 2013 re-release of a 1940’s pattern
  • Pattern: Simplicity 1590
  • Fabric: 1 metre of DS Piccadilly Floral Spot 100% cotton quilting fabric in Navy, Cream, Orange and Pink ($11.89)
  • Notions: Five buttons with violet print on them ($5.00)
  • Time to complete: One week
  • Make again? Yes! I’m pretty sure I will. I love the neckline of this pattern, and it’s a really simple blouse to put together.  It’s fun.
  • Wear again? 100%!  I can see this blouse becoming quite a central piece to my 1940’s outfits. It’s easy to wear and I love the print, the colours, and the style. I’m so thrilled with how it turned out.
  • Total Cost:  $16.89 AUD

Have any of you sewn up Simplicity 1590?  Which version would you sew if you did?

xox,

bonita

༺ ♡ ༻

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1950s | 1960s | Dresses | Mildly Insane Photo | Vintage Sewing

The Completed Fall Fancies Dress!

By on July 30, 2012

This post is all the behind-the-scenes details of my latest me-made project, which I recently featured in an outfit post ~ My Fall Fancies Dress.

I started this dress in February with an vintage Advance 9785 shirtwaist dress pattern I got off Etsy and some vintage thrifted cotton.  I think the Advance is late 1950s – early 1960s?  I’m not 100% sure, but I thought it was pretty anyway.

I had to tackle a few new skills with this pattern ~ doing to an FBA on a kimono sleeve bodice was just for starters.  The dart ended up looking funny, so I just moved it to where I thought it should go and thankfully it worked!

I also had to try my hand at my first on-the-bias project, as the bodice was bias cut, and to make the layout trickier, I had to pattern/stripe match as well!  This meant that it took me THREE hours just to cut out the bodice, and I wasted a fair amount of fabric which led me to the conclusion that, although pretty, bias cuts aren’t necessarily worth it.

Buttonholes and pleating were also two new skills to me ~ and I have to say I adore my Bernina 860!  It’s five step buttonhole program is the easiest, simplest way to do buttonholes and once I practised a few I just breezed through the three buttonholes on the dress’s bodice.  I never thought I would say this, but ~ I love stitching buttonholes!

The pleats were relatively simple, and I am positively ecstatic with how they look!  I think that they suit my figure far better than gathers, so I know I will be trying these again.

Of course, although I like the original pattern, I still made an alteration and took out the buttons/facing strip down the front of the skirt.  I think my reasoning for that was that the bodice buttonholes were scary enough without having to do more!  Plus, I find button-down skirts annoying.  They tend to pop open a lot on me for some reason.

I had trouble with the collar/neck facing and end up tacking and sewing that down in about a hundred different ways/places, as well as the collar being a pain to put on.  I had to re-apply it and rip it out at least three times, but even though the inside is a little messy, you can’t tell from the outside, which is good. I guess these things just take practise.

All these new challenges meant I did a lot of stop/start sewing; sometimes leaving the dress for weeks until I could summon up the courage and the time to pick it up again.

However, the thing that I am most proud of with this project is how perfectly my seams match!  The centre back seam and the shoulder seams are spot on and I love how the front facing has that lovely ‘bridge’ between the two front chevron-stripes.  Pattern matching is fiddley and time-consuming, but oh, so satisfying when it comes out right!

~ Project Details ~

Year:  Late 1950s – early 1960s
Pattern:  Advance 9785
Fabric:  About 6 yards/5.5 metres of thrifted cotton doona cover {$9.00} ~ this is one fabric eating pattern!
Notions:  Three buttons {$3.00}
Time to complete: I have no idea…
Make/Wear again? Definitely wear again!!  I am really happy with how it came out: I love the fit, the style and the fabric. However, I am not so sure that I’ll make the pattern up again.  I’m thinking that once was enough.  Although, I do love the skirt, so it does seem likely that I might use that part of the pattern again.
Total Cost:  $25.00 including the pattern

xox,

bonita

P.S. ~  For more posts, outfits, tutorials and more, please visit my blog Depict This!  I hope to see you there soon!!  ^ω ^


								

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1950s | Dresses | Vintage Sewing

The Next Dress ~ Plotting, planning and scheming!

By on February 10, 2012

Start with one vintage pattern ~ Advance 9785.

Add a dash of floral fabric ~

And one excited me…

And you have my next dress project in the wings!

It wasn’t long after finishing my last dress{The On My Way Dress} that I began to wish I had another project to do.  Then I was digging through my stash trying to find fabric and a pattern that went together before I knew it.  The McCall’s I sewed up last time was obviously my first choice for a pattern, being the easiest and newest of all my patterns{most of which are vintage} but I simply could not find a fabric that worked for what I had in mind.  So I picked the biggest length of fabric that I cared the least about, a vintage pattern that seemed easy enough for me figure out using logic and decided to go to town!

This is my attempt at draping the fabric on Elizabeth, my dress form, to figure out whether this stripy flower pattern will work. I only found out while tracing the pattern that the bodice is cut on the bias whereas the skirt is cut on the straight grain…  I think it will look alright, but it’s going to take some really careful cutting to match this up nicely!   : S   Eeek! Scary stuff!  So tell me, am I being stupid tackling stripes and bias at the same time?  Keep in mind that I have never matched patterns before and I have only sewn one dress to date!

That’s another thing ~ is it easier to start pattern matching with small or large patterns? I sort of feel large might be easier, but I could be so wrong about that, it’s not even funny….   : \

….On the other hand ~ how cute is Veiw 2 with the chevron pattern on the bodice?  I am planning to do View 1 with the long sleeves as I felt this fabric has a more autumn/winterish feel to it, and Veiw 2 gives me a fairly good idea of how this might look in the end.

Oh, I am so excited to start sewing this up ~ I have to do the muslin next and after a tricky FBA that didn’t seem to work, I wonder how it will turn out…. Don’t worry, I’ll let you know if it’s a win or a fail!

xox,

bonita

P.S.  ~  For more photos, posts, outfits, and tutorials please come and say hi to me at my blog Depict This!   I hope to see you there soon.   ^ ω ^

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