YoungSeamstress

For my high school graduation, I made my dress from Vogue S-4727, a vintage pattern from 1956. It may look familiar – I posted my wearable muslin for this dress here back in March!

I used turquoise silk dupioni, which wasn’t as challenging to sew with as I expected! The pattern itself was far more challenging than working with the fabric was. I underlined parts of it with silk organza to reinforce the seams, and it had underarm gussets and a very awkward zipper insertion. I spent a lot of time hand basting!

I ended up putting in an invisible zipper, which I would usually avoid, but the lapped one on my wearable muslin didn’t look very good because of the way the zipper curves into the godet. Because I don’t trust invisible zippers, I put in a waist stay to support it. I hemmed the skirt by hand with horsehair braid, which I love!  I wore it with two crinolines (a bigger, itchier one with a subtler, softer one underneath), both of which were vintage from my aunt. She wore one of them to her high school graduation in 1960!

My shoes are vintage that I bought at a thrift store. I love them! They’re all leather, made in Italy, and have a really gorgeous cutout detail on them. I borrowed the purse from my mom, and the pearl earrings and necklace once belonged to my grandma. I did my own makeup, although I didn’t do much. I did a bit of a cat-eye and wore some super subtle false eyelashes and my favourite lipstick.

My hairdresser did my hair and nails – hair is one thing that I can’t do myself! I loved my hairdo, so it was worth it to get it done (although it was quite a challenge to get my dress over my head without wrecking it!).

It was such a fun day, and I was so happy with my dress! For more construction details and photos, check out my blog post!

If you want to read about other steps in sewing this dress, I wrote posts on choosing a pattern, my two muslins, and my wearable muslin.

Thanks for reading!

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Since participating in Me-Made-May, my sewing focus has shifted to wearable, comfortable clothing with a vintage vibe, rather than the full-on vintage look that I absolutely love, but rarely wear. In the past couple weeks, I’ve made three knit Moneta dresses, and I’m pretty sure it’s safe to say that it’s my new favourite dress pattern!

This is my second version of this dress, and I modified it to look like a knit version of this 60′s dress:

To do this, I raised the neckline to a boatneck, moved the gathers to the side of the skirt only, and lengthened the skirt. In retrospect, I should have made the back neckline into a V-neck, and widened the shoulders a little, to match the 60′s dress. Maybe next time!

I used a floral viscose jersey, and lined the bodice with and off-white bamboo jersey. I’m reasonably happy with the fit, although the armholes are a little big and the bodice is still a little long (I shortened it 1 1/4″ for this version). I hemmed it with a stretch blind hem, rather than the recommended twin needle, and I think that it turned out quite well!

Overall, though, I’m really happy with it! I’ve worn it lots as a casual day dress, and I also wore it to my high school graduation ceremony, under the ridiculous gown that you have to wear. For more details and photos, see my blog post, and for even more photos, see my flickr. If you’re interested, you can see my first Moneta dress here, a simple green one with a tie collar.

Thanks for reading!

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This dress was actually intended as a wearable muslin (after two non-wearable muslins) for a dress I’m making for my high school graduation, but I’m quite happy with how it turned out!

The pattern is Vogue S-4727 from 1956, which I borrowed from a friend who has the most amazing vintage pattern collection. I sized it down using a photocopier (you can see my post on that here), and I was surprised to find that it fit me perfectly with very minor alterations!

Since there’s lots in the pattern that I’d never done before (underarm gussets, godets, a zipper inserted into a godet, hemming such a full skirt), I wanted to make a wearable muslin. That way, I would have a better idea how it was put together when I make the real thing (in a gorgeous turquoise silk dupioni).

Here’s where I need your advice! I’m not happy at all with my zipper or my hem, and I need to figure out better ways to do both.

The zipper starts in the side seam, then curves into the godet, but where it curves, the lap puckers and flips forward! I think I would have the same problem with a centered zipper, so I’m considering an invisible one, but I don’t really trust invisible zippers after having many of them break (once before I even finished the dress). Help!

Also, this skirt is full because of the godets, but is as full as a circle skirt. Before now, I had never hemmed a circle skirt, and I’m not really happy with the hem on this. It looks fine in the photos because I had just ironed it, but after a while it doesn’t hang very nicely. I would like to do the hem by hand when I make my grad dress, but I don’t really know the best way to do it. I’m considering using horsehair braid, just for fun, but any suggestions would be appreciated!

For more pictures, and for more construction details (including my problems with the zipper and hem), see my blog post.

Also, if you’re interested in following my progress on my grad dress, I’ll be doing a series of posts on the construction at my blog, Adventures of a Young Seamstress. Thanks for reading!

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So, I finally finished my bombshell swimsuit, just in time for the middle of winter! I know, the timing seems ridiculous, but I actually wear a bathing suit way more in the winter than in the summer, since we have a hot tub and I really don’t care much for swimming. It was my first time sewing a bathing suit and although it’s far from perfect, I absolutely love it!

I made View A in this adorable watermelon-print fabric from The Fabric Fairy, which I ordered online (the irony is that I don’t actually like eating watermelon…). I won’t say much about the pattern because it’s all been said already! It’s fantastic – so flattering and retro-looking.

That being said, I did have some problems with the fit, but they were my fault rather than the pattern’s. I managed to improvise a “quick fix” that probably ended up taking more time than ripping it out and starting over, but the fit is good now. The inside is a bit of a mess, which would usually bug me, but not this time because, um, I MADE A SWIMSUIT.

For more photos and construction details, see my blog post. Thanks for reading!

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