1920s | 1930s | Dresses

Re-Creating My Grandmother’s Dress – Gatsby 2018

By on October 5, 2018

Every year the Art Deco Society of California puts on the The Gatsby Summer Afternoon. This Gatsby Event is the highlight of my year, as far as vintage events go, and this year was no exception. The weather was perfect (high 70 degrees and breezy), the picnics were exquisite and the company eclectic and entertaining.

For this year’s ensemble, I chose to replicate a look that my grandmother wore (see photo above) in one of her modeling photos. I’ve admired this dress for years and have not quite had the nerve to re-create it until now. That front neck detail with the capelet and ruching really had me flummoxed.

When I mentioned, on Instagram that this was my plan, Deirdre from Vintage Pattern Lending Library suggested I use one of her patterns to start and then she sent it to me! How lucky am I? Thank you Deirdre! The pattern was a perfect jumping off point and it really took the pressure off to have a pattern to start from.

I’m pretty pleased with the overall look, considering, in the end, I only had about a week to pull it off. I completed the ensemble with me-made purse, hat and jewelry. There are a few changes I would make, given the time and inclination (neckline wider and capelet longer in the back). Overall, though, I’m pretty happy with the whole look.

To read the complete post, see pattern adaptations and more pictures from the event, please visit my blog.

Thanks and Happy Sewing!

xo – Jennifer

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1920s | Coats | Vintage Sewing

1920’s Style Blue Velvet Evening Coat

By on September 24, 2018
JSerrBlueVelvetCoat

I wore this Blue Velvet Coat to the Miss Fisher Convention this year in Portland, Oregon. In this photo shoot (Thanks Mom!) I paired the jacket with a true vintage 1920’s silk lace and chiffon dress, along with some rhinestone / crystal accessories and coordinating shoes and bag.I think it all works together quite nicely.

When making this Coat, I really wanted a long attached neck scarf like Phryne Fisher (Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries) wears on many of her coats. As I was cutting out this silk velvet, I really had to squeeze every inch of what I had. So, that meant that I had to piece the scarf. It left a seam on one side in the front that I really didn’t like and the naps were different. This was a dilemma at a late hour. Luckily, I had two beaded appliques that worked perfectly. I bought 3 of them, and glad I did.

I’m really pleased with how the side gusset turned out. At first, they seemed a little small, but after inserting them in the side, they give the coat, just enough swing. Also, there was not enough fabric to make them any bigger, so I certainly can’t complain.

The Patterns I Used – Both from Vintage Pattern Girl on Etsy – 1929 Ladies Straight-Line Coat – Reproduction Sewing Pattern #Z2545 & 1934 Ladies Dress With Coat – Reproduction Sewing Pattern #T1418

For the complete blog post and to see HOW I did the pattern adaptations, please visit my Blog.

 

Until Next Time – Happy Sewing!

xo

Jennifer

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1930s | Blouses | Skirts

1930’s Green & Peach Ensemble

By on March 19, 2018

Have you ever come across the perfect fabric that goes with another fabric you’ve been waiting to do something with?  Well, this darling plaid came into my life and I just had a to make a new outfit around it. It’s a synthetic charmeuse, which is not a regular go-to for me.  I much prefer silk.

However, when I saw this plaid which was printed on the diagonal, it really screamed 1930’s blouse, right at me!  AND it matched perfectly with a beautiful green wool that’s been waiting to be made into something for quite some time.

1936 Ladie’s Skirt #T1047

The emerald green of the wool is one of my favorite colors and I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to make this skirt, for which I had a pattern waiting in the wings.  I’ve used this pattern twice before, once recently using a wool tweed and made slightly shorter.  It’s the Vintage Pattern Lending Library – 1936 Ladies Skirt – #T1047 – re-sized to fit my body measurements.

I used the re-issue of Simplicity 8247, to make my blouse.  Using Version C, I shortened the dress at the hip line to create the blouse.  It worked out very well.

For more photos and information about my hat and bag, visit my BLOG.

Until Next Time, Happy Sewing!

Jennifer

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1930s | Blouses | Coats | Skirts | Vintage Sewing

December Red – a 1930’s Red Wool Ensemble

By on December 17, 2017

This outfit all began the fabric. The print (Asian Art Deco?) from this quilting cotton was irresistible and there was just enough of it (left to purchase) to scrape out a blouse. It seemed so suited for something 1930’s, but is a quilting cotton, so not terribly drapey. I already had a very long length of wool crepe that coordinated, so I knew I could make something to go with the finished piece.

I went in  search for the perfect 1930’s blouse pattern, to start, which proved to be a little easier said than done, as I had trouble finding a blouse pattern that suited the fabric. I did settle on a gorgeous 1930’s dress pattern with a fabulous neck bow, that could be converted into a blouse and skirt. Next up, I searched for a coat pattern and ended up finding all my patterns in the same place. Yay!

The Dress Pattern (above) that I chose to adapt to a blouse and skirt, appealed to me, at first, because of the bow, but also because of the angled shaping of the front opening and V-shape at the center front on the skirt. Because of the minimal length of fabric, I knew the fuller sleeve was not an option.  The short puff sleeve seemed more flattering as well, so I did end up using it in the end.

The Coat pattern was an easy choice.  I love that it had some flair to both the sleeves and the bottom edge.  It seemed a very easy and less formal design that would pair nicely with the finished skirt and blouse.

Each piece turned out very well and I’m excited to wear them all to a Caroling party next weekend.  The Red is VERY festive, don’t you think?

If you would like to see more of how I adapted the dress pattern into a skirt and blouse, some great sewing techniques for the coat and all my resources for the entire ensemble, please visit my blog.

Until next time, Happy Sewing!

xo

Jennifer

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1940s | Blouses | Pants / Trousers | Vintage Sewing

Smooth Sailing Sport Togs – My 1940’s Outfit

By on November 23, 2017

Pictured here is a 1940’s (or late 1930’s) outfit that I sewed up using the Wearing History Smooth Sailing Sport Togs Shirt and Trousers pattern.  After surfing all my hearted patterns on Etsy, I just kept coming across this pattern and thinking about it.  Then I started seeing other versions of the same pattern popping up on some of the people I follow on Instagram. The trousers looked good on everyone, so I decided to give it a spin.

Smooth Sailing Sport Togs Blouse by Wearing History Patterns

This pattern is available in paper form or as a digitally downloadable file.  I chose the downloadable file because it was less expensive and I would get it delivered right away.  The later being more important. That’s funny, actually, because I did not end up sewing it right away.  Ha!  assembling the pages to create the pattern was clearly explained and took me about 45 minutes to complete (both top and pants).

Smooth Sailing Sport Togs Blouse and Trousers by Wearing History Patterns

LOVE, LOVE, LOVE!!!! This pattern is great. I would and will make this again, maybe adding pockets to the pants and also adjusting the fit in the armholes.

For more photos and my complete pattern review, visit the post on my blog.

Until Next Time, Happy Sewing!

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1970s | Accessories | Vintage Sewing

Vintage 1970’s Advent Calendar

By on November 16, 2017

In the 1970’s my aunt Sharon made our family an Advent Calendar.  It’s crafted almost entirely of acrylic felt and quite a testament to the crafting movement of the era.  I’m very sentimental about it, even though we were not particularly religious, growing up. I just remember waking up each day, excited to put another ornament on the tree.  Thankfully, my mom kept it around for the years after I left home and then gave it to me later on.  We carry on this tradition at home today and my 14 year old daughter feels as sentimental about it as I do.

This is the newly finished Advent Calendar that is now hanging in my Shop!

A few months ago, one of my dear Bridal clients (from when I did that) dropped by to donate some sewing materials her son acquired from an estate sale. Inside were these tiny little ornaments, exquisitely and painstakingly beaded. I knew they would come into some use, when I saw that they were all Christmas themed.  So that is what led me to re-make this wonderful holiday craft.

This is the Vintage Advent Calendar made in the 1970’s
Here are some of the vintage ornaments my aunt made to go into the original Advent Calendar – Some have survived better than others….

Visit my blog for a complete tutorial and the material’s list.  Until next time, Happy Sewing!

Jennifer

xoxo

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1930s | Dresses | Vintage Sewing

1930’s Dress Complete – Gatsby Summer Afternoon 2017

By on November 10, 2017

 I made this dress for the 2017 Gatsby Summer Afternoon at Dunsmuir House, in Oakland CA.  It was sewn using two VPLL patterns. You can see the prototype dress here – made from the 1931 Dress pictured above left. The only changes I made to the pattern, after making my prototype was an increase of 2″ to the hips and I changed the sleeve, using the VPLL 1930’s dress, pictured above right (one layer only). I also followed the method of stitching the bodice shirring after sewing the midriff to the bodice, that Dierdre from VPLL suggested in my prototype post comments. That method looked much better, for sure. Otherwise, this pattern sewed up very nicely.

Full length dress front
Full length dress Back

If you would like to read more and see the full post you visit my blog.  Happy Sewing!

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