1940s | Blouses | Vintage Sewing

1940’s Sew For Victory blouse… From a Bed Sheet!

By on April 4, 2013

Recently I joined in the Sew For Victory Sew Along, and although I was a few days late I DID finish! Whew!

My pattern was a 1940’s blouse pattern I bought off Etsy. It came to me all the way from the UK, but I had to have it… I fell in love with the sleeves! Initially I was going to make the long sleeved collar one with the great cuffs, but the more I looked, the more I wanted to do View 3. And so I did!

I had a lot of trouble getting started. Mainly because I could not find a fabric I wanted. So in true #SewForVictory spirit I spotted an unused purple sheet in my garage and BINGO! It became my blouse!

See? Aren’t those sleeves great? Although, oops, they seem to require a bit more pressing! I am wondering if I should add the shoulder pads. I KNOW they were the thing in the 40’s… and 80’s… Hmmm- do you think they will be back any time soon? I think the shoulder seam would be in the perfect spot WITH the shoulder pads. I may try it out!

The pattern was pretty easy! I was surprised, because I admit I was very hesitant to begin. I looked at those completely blank pattern pieces with punched holes scattered throughout, and ONE page of directions for several days before I even got the courage to start… and finally I just dived in! And it wasn’t bad at all. As a matter of fact the manner in which they did the collars was very simple! And despite there being quite a few darts, once I had marked and pinned them all they went in easily! And I really like all the darts and tucks. They add a nice fit! So feminine!

On a side note- No pattern pieces were harmed in the making of this blouse. 😀

Inside I used all french seams. Oh how I LOVE the look of the inside of a garment with french seams. I put up the hem by hand using hem tape (lace)… I think the inside looks almost as nice as the outside!

I was also worried about the button holes. It has been years since I have done any, and frankly using my daughters $80 sewing machine (mine is still broken) made me wonder if my whole blouse would become a wadder once I tried fighting with it. BUT they went in without a hitch! Easy as pie… I covered buttons because I wanted a nice clean look.

When I was finished I got out the dye. The color of the sheet was a wishy washy kind of purple and I wanted to deepen it so I bought purple dye, and added in a bit of blue. I think the color turned out perfect! BTW- Purple is HARD to photograph! It is a deeper purple than the one above- It is more like the first pic of me…

I wanted to look like the girl on the pattern but my hair is too long so I pulled it back… BUT I did add a black ribbon as a tie. 😀 I am very happy with my blouse and absolutely WILL wear it! Probably sans the ribbon tie!

I think this is a blouse I will make again. I would change the length of the blouse- I would add on a few inches I think. I would LOVE to have a dressy long sleeved one made from silk charmeuse… and I am still pining after a pretty aqua cotton poplin blouse- maybe the short sleeve one for a springy/ summery top.

I definitely have a greater appreciation for my grandma! My grandpa was a soldier in the Marines for many years! I definitely enjoyed this foray into that period of time and plan on participating again next year!

That is my grandad! He was a career Marine and joined up in the early 1940’s… Later on he became a recruiter and recruited my mom and several of his sons! 🙂


Continue Reading

1960s | Dresses | Vintage Sewing

A Lovely 60’s Party Dress

By on November 21, 2012

A few weeks back I posted a pattern and a question about what kind of seams you lovely fellow sewers use to finish your vintage clothing. (I wasn’t sure if a serger would be appropriate!) I received many good suggestions, and happily began my first vintage project!

Here is the pattern and fabric for the dress. Doubly exciting to me was the fact that several comments mentioned they at one time had this pattern… and had made the dress. And when I showed my Auntie Lynda the dress, she informed that she had made a dress from the pattern as well! Oh, the excitement! 🙂

I am happy to say the dress is complete and I am pleased! When my daughter Kadi put it on she said she felt like Fiona because of the fab sleeves. (Fiona is the princess in Schrek) She said all she needed was a party to wear it to!

The dress is a marvelous color. I used a Shantung, shiny side up per my daughters request. Everything went pretty well… I hand sewed the hem and facings and the ribbon. For the most part I used French Seams on the inside. The gathered sleeve was a little more difficult and I ended up using a turned and stitched seam on that area.  The sleeves are a bit long- again at her request! But when your daughter feels like a Princess- You feel like you have succeeded in your mission!

I would like to do this dress again- All in lace and lined with a slip type dress. And maybe turn the sleeves in to a bell sleeve. Just a thought!

Continue Reading

Vintage Sewing

Inspired! And a question…

By on November 6, 2012

I recently found this blog and went back several months reading all the posts and became inspired to finally start on my first Vintage dress. I have been collecting patterns for a while but have not ventured forth and created. But this weekend I began my first dress for my eldest daughter who chose the fabric. Here it is…

Check out the FAB Juliet sleeves on View 3! It is all cut and I have begun… BUT I have a question for all of you retro seamstresses out there… How do you finish your inside seams? Do you use a serger? Or french seams? Or pink them? Thanks!!! And I will share the finished product when it is complete!

Continue Reading