1970s | Children | Dresses | Kids | Pattern Drafting | Vintage Sewing

The Daphne Dress

By on July 24, 2012

Daphne from Scooby Doo dressMy daughter was invited to a ‘Scooby Doo’ party and she wanted to go as Daphne! To be honest, I’m glad she didn’t want to be Scooby!

I used a long sleeve T-shirt pattern from an old Burda Style Magazine, issue 10/2010, making a few adjustments: I changed the button placket to a v-neck, I shortened the sleeves, I lengthened the top to a dress, shaping it a little from the waist, and added some bias trim for a touch of authenticity! The fabric was just over a metre of cotton stretch jersey and that included a hairband too. The scarf is half a metre of lime green polyester. A little light relief from some of the more complex vintage patterns I’ve been playing with. In fact… quite fancy one of these myself!! Also blogged over at ooobop!

 

 

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1950s | Aprons | Children | Jumpers / Pinafores

McCalls 1712

By on June 22, 2012

I made this a couple days ago as a birthday present for a little girl in my son’s class and it’s from fabulous 1952. the only things I changed was to bag line the apron instead of using like 7 yards of bias binding and I added a button tab instead of neck ties. The bag lining is much faster to sew and adds that little bit more protection in case she dumps a ton of paint on herself.

I loaded the pockets with art supplies and I think she is just going to love it.

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Children | Mildly Insane Photo

Mind blown: Keepers Dolly Duds

By on June 19, 2012

This isn’t my page (I don’t work for her, we’re not sorority sisters, etc.) but I found it when I was looking for something else and it’s so awesome I have to share.  I sew for dolls only occasionally, and I’m sort of burned out on seeing stuff for 18-inch “toddler-type” dolls (short, chubby, bodies), but . . . this stuff is just “wow”!  Besides, I’m sure many of our retro seamstresses have children who have dolls, or have dolls themselves.

Flickr stream.

I recognize a lot of the 1940’s designs from real patterns.  She has things from a lot of different decades, too, not just the “pioneer” styles that seem to be most popular for dolls this size.

 

(I do have  a 1950’s-style dirndl skirt on the sewing table but it’s not fit to be posted yet.  Give me a few more days.  More if I decide I really, truly, cannot wear it without the perfect white sleeveless blouse.)

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Children | Kids

Retronaut Awesomeness

By on June 12, 2012

Hi all! I am a huge fan of this site. I was trolling it this morning stirring up some inspiration for kids clothes. I love the little girls dress patterns but hate putting in zips or button plackets. They have a bunch of color photos from the 1940s of kids wearing regular everyday clothes. One pic in particular had a family of little girls all wearing matching dresses and you can tell how they were finished. Drawstring waists and just a button and loop closure for the neck. Duh! Head slap! So simple! I love seeing practical interpretations of the patterns, no one had time to outfit all their kids with tons of buttons and zips and deep hems and such.

http://www.retronaut.co/2011/10/colour-photographs-of-american-children-1940s/

I can’t snag the photo for some reason….

Anyway, thought I would pass the site along, great inspiration for every decade!

Happy sewing y’all!
~Meg

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1950s | Children

50’s Sunsuit Simplicity 1443

By on June 8, 2012

I am so excited about several new to me vintage patterns I recently acquired.  I jumped right into making this sunsuit.

S1443.jpg
Sunsuit view 4

The original pattern calls for bias edging and plastic lining.  I used muslin instead, and added a 1/4 in seam allowance.  It helped to make the leg hole just a bit bigger, by not adding the seam allowance there.  Note the elastic at the leg.  I used KAM snaps and a variety of trim options.

Inside of sunsuit

 

Boy version with applique and no ruffles.

Boy sunsuit

Finished sunsuit back.

Back boy sunsuit

And the girly versions!  : )

Sunsuit with shoulder ruffles, flower and red snaps
Ruffly all around body front

 

Someone said this was not boyish enough for boys, but they are 3 months size, so I think it is fine.  I am already working on another.  I love the sweet simplicity of this pattern.  It is very easy to make.

 

 

 

 

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Children | Dresses

Smocked sundress

By on May 30, 2012

This is a hand smocked sundress I just finished up for my daughter. It’s a refashion from the skirt of one of my old dresses, which I had appliqued the cherries onto originally. The smocking took a couple of evenings work in front of the TV and was very enjoyable to do (after the slightly boring task of gathering). For my first go at this technique I’m very happy with the outcome!

The back is shirred with elastic by machine, and I used bias binding to finish the armscyes and add tie straps.

Detail of the smocking:

As always, more on my blog.

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1970s | Children

Toddler Tennis Dress and Sewing “in the Flat”

By on May 14, 2012

Yesterday for Mother’s Day, my sweetie pie husband gave me the day off. He cooked all of our meals and cleaned up too, and I was free to get some good sewing time in. I made a dress for the baby in a cute little retro print synthetic knit I found thrifting for a quarter.

For the second time now, I sewed an entire garment “in the flat.” Does anyone else do this? What the heck do I mean? Well, the instructions for the pattern I used, Butterick 5976, would have you sew the side, back and shoulder seams, then attach the collar and facing, insert the zipper next, and then ease in the sleeves and hem them (those tiny little sleeves!) before hemming the dress bottom.

Here is what I did:

  1. Serged the shoulder seams together and pressed them backward
  2. Eased in the sleeve cap and serged into place
  3. Serged sleeve hem and hemmed/stitched the opening of the sleeve while flat
  4. Sewed the collar as usual. Serged bottom of facing and attached facing and collar to dress
  5. Understitched facing and instead of tacking stitched facing to shoulder it in the ditch through the top of the shoulder seam
  6. Serged both sides of back seam separately then sewed to zipper bottom position. Inserted zipper, and hand slip-stitched facing edge at top of zipper
  7. Serged side seams and sleeve seams all at once. Pressed seams toward back. Alternately (to allow for small adjustments later) you could serge front and back individually and sew
  8. Serged hem and hemmed it

I don’t know if there is any reason not to sew this way, but I have been finding many aspects of construction easier when garments are sewn in the flat- especially kids stuff. Um, and zippers! If you are machine sewing a zipper, it is way, way easier to sew it flat without all of that extra fabric in the way. And why fuss to fold and hem a tiny sleeve when you can just sew it flat? Yes, this does make a seam that ends at the armscye, but isn’t that seam hidden by the child’s arm anyway?

 I’d really be interested to know if anyone else sews this way or has tried it, or if anyone knows of reasons why it might be a bad idea.

Another neat part about this project, for me, was that it was constructed mostly on my serger, which I have used a lot for finishing, but not construction. I imagine this method of sewing flat made the serger construction easier, as there were curves to sew but not circles.

 Now that I’ve rambled on, here are some pics of my little munchkin in her new dress.

 

Courtesy of the Vintage Pattern Wiki


 

She is wearing my shoes 🙂

 

It is great how she is so excited to wear a dress I have made her. Sometimes she comes to me with a shirt or scarf and says, “Mommy, I made this for you!” It won’t be long before we’ll have a little sweatshop going!

Also posted at my blog, Farmhouse Garden.

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