1950s | Dresses

Vogue 1397 Easter Spring Dress 2017

By on April 17, 2017
Akram's Ideas: The Easter Spring Dress 2017 Big Reveal in Blue

I hope you all have had a lovely Easter holiday this past weekend.

While there were some early morning storms by afternoon the weather had warmed up enough to debut my #EasterSpringDress2017.

I had the pleasure of co-hosting the #EasterSpringDress2017 sewalong with Judith of Judith Dee’s World  , which encouraged participants to sew a new dress or outfit for Easter / Spring.

Tracy Reese Vogue 1397

For my own project, I wanted a very classic 50’s style Easter dress.  I decided to make Tracy Reese Vogue 1397, while a modern pattern I felt had that classic look I was going for.

For the fabric I had my followers choose between a bold pink rose print and a monochromatic blue rose print. Blue was chosen as the overall favorite, which I’m happy with since I don’t usually make a lot of blue dresses.

Akram's Ideas : #EasterSpringDress2017 Sewalong
I couldn’t decided between blue or pink

The project seemed real straight forward, though I found the low back neckline caused a lot of drooping issues. I ended up making 4 different muslins of the bodice top and am still not 100% happy with the final results of how the bodice sets.

Despite the issues with the bodice, the overall look of the dress is lovely.

Akram's Ideas: The Easter Spring Dress 2017 Big Reveal in Blue
Overall I’m pretty happy with this dress.

As I said earlier I really like the vintage inspired look of this dress, even more so when I paired it with vintage accessories.

While it may not be my best make the end result is exactly the look I was going for.

Akram's Ideas: The Easter Spring Dress 2017 Big Reveal in Blue
Vintage accessories make this dress

Check out my Youtube video about this make ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4p8vqO64h-U) or read more about my process for making my Easter Spring Dress 2017 check out my blog Akram’s Ideas (http://akramsideas.com/easter-spring-dress-2017-reveal/)

Did you make a dress for the #EasterSpringDress2017 how did it turn out?

 

 

 

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1940s | Burlesque / Pinup | Dresses | Modern Patterns

#EasterSpringDress2017 – Sew Over It – Vintage Shirt Dress #2!

By on April 13, 2017

Hi pinups! I love a good sew along and I don’t need much tempting into sewing a new dress, especially when the theme is Spring. When I saw Akram’s Ideas and Judith Dee‘s Easter Spring Dress 2017 sewalong I couldn’t wait to get involved.

This was my second time sewing this pattern and I really do like it. It’s reasonably simple to follow with a flattering shape and a sweet rounded collar. This time around I made a smaller size. Whilst my first one certainly fits me, I wanted a more fitted waist. There was a point I didn’t think it was going to fit across my bust, but hurrah it does and I’m really happy with it. For once, I think I might have found my perfect fit for this pattern.

See this dress in action in my reveal video below or HERE:

You can read my full review of the Sew Over It Vintage Shirt Dress HERE.

See the full Easter Spring Dress post HERE.

Thanks for reading, pinups!

xo

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1950s | Dresses | Vintage Sewing

Weekly Star Farmer/Pattern Bureau 1950s 2207 – Foal Dress

By on April 11, 2017

I’m usually a very slow seamstress, but occasionally–very occasionally–I actually work well under pressure.

I had an event coming up and decided I really, really, wanted a new dress to wear.  A themed dress.  I’d had the fabric for awhile but hadn’t given myself permission to sew it (this is an ongoing problem for me: I feel obligated to burn through a bunch of boring utility projects before I let myself sew the high-investment ones.  But of course I have limited time so I never get to the high-investment ones).

The fabric was Moda Purebred Bluegrass Foals in coral red (not quite this bright in real life.  The foals are natural cotton color, not bright white, and the coral is slightly faded):

 

It’s a big print.  The foals are about three inches each.

My pattern requirements were specific: It had to be 1950’s (big skirt) and it had to have a skirt that was four panels or fewer, and couldn’t have a lot of design elements, because I wanted to preserve the foals as much as possible.

I went around and around on this but kept coming back to Weekly Star Farmer (probably Pattern Bureau) 2207, from the early 1950’s.  This design was also sold as Pattern Bureau 2911 and, later, as 2593.

I love the pockets.   How can you not love those pockets?

It needed a lot of adjustment, partly for personal fit (longer bodice, added upper back width, minor full-bust adjustment) but also for design reasons.  The illustration is kind of a lie: The skirt is actually conical, not bell-shaped, and the pockets are set two inches below where they’re shown.

The skirt pieces have straight sides.  Not kidding.  And no darts.

I knew this would need alteration, anyway, because I have big hips, but the test muslin, while better, still didn’t look good and wasn’t comfortable.  The final solution was to both curve the side and center back seams, and to add 3/4 inch width per side in the back, and then create waist darts.

The other major issue was the collar.  The original collar was two pieces that, I guess, met in the back?  I didn’t like the way this looked and also thought it seemed structurally weak:

So I reshaped it to meet in the back as a contiguous collar.  But the test collar was enormous.  I am not kidding–it was as wide as the shoulder points on the dress, and it looked nothing at all like the illustration.  It was like wearing an open jacket flapping around all the time, except it was attached.  I narrowed it by two and a half inches (you read that correctly) and lowered the point in the front by an inch and a half.  It’s still plenty big but at least I’m not in danger in a stiff wind.

I mounted the pockets two inches higher than the pattern called for.  For the record: I’m a little over 5’7″, so I have no idea for whom the original pockets were intended.  Chimpanzees, perhaps?  I don’t know how a shorter woman would have reached them.  (They’re not crooked.  I’m slouching because the show lasted 15 hours.)

Still plenty of collar!  I think I could narrow that by another inch and it would still look good.

I sort of want to make this again . . . ideally in a large blue-on-blue gingham with solid trim.

And in case you’re wondering why I needed a dress with horses all over it . . . Lemmonade Live Model Horse Show 2017.

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1950s | Dresses | Pattern Drafting | Vintage Sewing

Butterick 6299 just in time for Autumn

By on March 18, 2017

It’s getting cooler here in Aotearoa New Zealand, while all you sewers in the north are getting set for summer, I’m glad things are cooling off now!

I have just finished this dress, it’s made with some lovely fabric my nana gave me, and I used a stunning Butterick pattern which was new to me this year, along with a couple of other lovely vintage patterns.

These ones!

The pattern is a size and a bit too small for me, so I graded it up, and voila! New dress! In my blog post about the making of this dress…

…I share how I graded it up, it’s pretty easy, you just need a basic pattern (or pattern block) that fits well.

The crossover bodice was a bit fiddly, and adding the bias trim gave me more bulk to deal with, but in the end, I am happy with it.

From the back…

And the bias trim….

The bias binding colour was perfect, but just enough to do the neckline and sleeve cuffs. So happy!

Happy Spring or Autumn Retro Sewists!

The blog link about this dress is here, and now I’m off to make another jumpsuit!

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1940s | Burlesque / Pinup | Dresses | Mad Men Inspired | Modern Patterns

Butterick Patterns by Gertie B6380 – 1940s Style Tea Dress

By on March 13, 2017

I’m so excited to share this dress with you! I feel so lucky with my sewing mojo having made my two of my new favourite dresses in a row (the first being THIS Simplicity number). I’ve be lusting after this Butterick B6380 pattern since it came out and have had it in my pattern stash since last year, waiting for the right fabric to come along! It’s a classic 1940s vintage style tea dress, designed by my sewing muse Gertie.

Sewing Summary:

Pattern: Butterick Pattern by Gertie 6380 Sweeheart Neckline Dress with Gathered Bodice

Fabric: 2m (with plenty left over) of viscose and a satin lining

Notions: 22″ concealed zip & 3 buttons to finish

Sewing time: 1 day and the hem on the following day

Modifications: I used a concealed zip instead of a lapped zipper and altered the pattern size (as stated above)

Fit: After a few tweaks, it fits perfectly!

Difficulty: Simpler than I thought, but certainly a challenge. Great project for confident beginners and for advanced seamstresses alike.

Watch out for: Getting even gathers and making sure the centre front point is precise.

Make again?: Yes! I really enjoyed this pattern.

Overall, you can probably tell, I’m over the moon with this dress. I think the design is super flattering on me and will be great for ladies with a larger bust and hourglass figures. I wore it with my favourite Coffee Seamed Stockings from my shop for a true 1940s look and I think they were meant to be.

To see this dress in action, I wore it in my Sew & Tell | February 2017 video over on my NEW YouTube channel. Please do subscribe!

Thanks for reading, pinups!
xo

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Dresses

Join the Easter Spring Dress 2017 Sewalong

By on March 2, 2017

I’m super excited to share with you guys the official kickoff of the #EasterSpringDress2017 sewalong.

Easter and the coming of spring are all about welcoming the new. Which I thought was also the perfect excuse for treating yourself to a new dress/outfit.  So, I (Akram at Akram’s Ideas) have teamed up with Judith of Judith Dee’s World to host the #EasterSpringDress2017 sewalong.

Akram's Ideas : #EasterSpringDress2017 Sewalong

The sewalong requirements are pretty lax as you can sew whatever pattern you desire and style, using a Spring/Easter themed print or color scheme.

Vintage Spring Inspiration

While the sewalong is open to all styles of patterns, I can’t help but think of classic vintage style dresses when I think of Easter.  The flowy full skirts of the 1950’s are the first to come to mind. Along with the light cotton weight fabric and of course the pastel floral prints.

Akram's Ideas : #EasterSpringDress2017 Sewalong

For this sewalong, I’ve decided to use Vogue 1397. While it’s not officially a vintage pattern the dress does have a lot of vintage inspired elements, such as a full lining and flared skirt. I also adore the pockets and tie back bow.

Akram's Ideas : #EasterSpringDress2017 Sewalong
Still debating between the blue of pink fabric

I’m super excited about co-hosting this sewalong and would love to see some super stunning vintage/retro styled projects.

Join the Fun

If you plan to join in the fun post your creations between Wednesday, April 12 thru Sunday, April 16 on Youtube, blog or Instagram using the hashtag #EasterSpringDress2017

For full details on the sewalong and to sign up be sure to see my full blog post at: http://wp.me/p3yKY3-2ox

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