1950s | Lingerie | Vintage Sewing

Butterick 9214: Robe for my Mom

By on December 31, 2012

Hope everyone is having a wonderful holiday. Just popping by to show you a present I sewed for my Mom. Butterick 9214, from 1959. I really enjoyed making this pattern, I love the elegance of it. I used a heavy velour fabric which has a great drape and is cozy for a robe. My mom loves it and feels very glam in it. Read more about on my blog: ErikaMadeIt


Have a happy and healthy 2013!








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1940s | 1950s | Burlesque / Pinup | Lingerie | Skirts | Vintage Sewing

Bras and Slips and Skirts, OH MY!

By on December 18, 2012

Two weeks ago, I finished up Mrs. Depew’s 1940′s French Bra Pattern #2014 in a simple lavender cotton broadcloth (read about it here).  I broke out the nicer satin-y fabric I had in my stash and made up another.  This time, I did not use any interfacing – I found this fabric to be much thicker and have more structure than the cotton fabric.

Pink Satin-y Bra

I added a little ribbon rosette on the front.  This bra reminds me of a cake with a dollop of frosting in the middle – or it could be that I’m reminded of a cake since I was frosting cookies this past week!


Up next is the slip from McCall’s 8744 (c. 1951) that I had asked for instructions here.  I actually finished this about two months ago, but am just now getting around to taking pictures.  Please excuse the hangers, I don’t have a mannequin.

Pattern cover and finished slip

This one is made with some ivory colored crepe fabric.  I have never had a full-length slip before and have wanted one ever since the age of 5 when I saw the 1980’s movie “Annie” – you know the scene where the sexy secretary is dancing in her slip and getting ready to go to the movies!  The only modification I made to this pattern was cutting the pieces out on the bias.  I don’t have the instructions to this pattern, but from the pieces shown on the back of the envelope, it looks like it is cut on the grain.  All the other slip patterns I have are cut on the bias.  This slip is very fun to wear under my dresses and skirts!

Speaking of skirts, this next one is what I call “The Blye Skirt”, named after my husband’s grandmother who gave me the fabric last year and recently passed away at the incredible age of 99!  I used Simplicity 4075 from 1942.

The material seems like some sort of suiting, and I found it to be a bit slippery to work with.  I had to shorten it by about 2 inches because I did not have enough fabric to have the original length, but it still comes down well past my knee and I love the end result.  I did a nice little side placket with snaps and used lace hem tape.  Though it needs a bit of ironing after hanging in my closet this past week (don’t you love my frugal pants/skirts hanger?), it has already been worn numerous times!  I think Blye would have been proud!

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1940s | Burlesque / Pinup | Lingerie | Vintage Sewing

My “Screw Bra Shopping” Bra

By on December 8, 2012

I’ve been drooling over Mrs. Depew’s “Sexy Ladies” patterns for a while now, and when my last store-bought bra finally met its demise just in time for “Black Friday”, I knew it was a sign to pick up Mrs. Depew’s 1940’s French Bra Pattern #2014 during her after Thanksgiving sale.   

From the moment I printed out this pattern, I was giddy with excitement to make it!  I’m always nervous to cut into my really nice fabrics when making a new pattern, so I decided to make it out of a lavender cotton that was hanging out in my stash.  I added lace on the upper cup to sexy up the cotton and did a three-button closure on the back.  The buttons are actually light pink, but unless you’re looking closely at it (which the only one to be doing that will be the hubby!) you can’t really tell that they don’t match. I also added fusible interfacing on the front and back bands to give the bands more structure.

Sexy bra on the not-so-sexy kitchen counter
Three Button Back Closure

I did modify the pattern and added a third bust dart towards to center front in order to make the cup more fitting to me.  This is a great pattern and so easy to make!  Total sewing time was a little less than three hours (including making  two muslins).  Now to get out my satin material to make some more!

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1950s | Burlesque / Pinup | Lingerie | Vintage Sewing

1950s silk pin-up pants

By on September 23, 2012

silk knickersI have been hugely inspired by all the pant-making activity in blogworld recently and decided to hop on board that bandwagon.

The pattern is care of Burda Style magazine, issue 01/12 from their Lovely Lingerie section. And the fabric I used is 100% stretch silk.

silk knickers bow

The pattern pieces are dead easy to work with but the elastic lace took a while to attach. It is stitched to the right side, turned inside and top-stitched twice. A bit fiddly to keep stretching as you sew whilst being mindful of the slippery fabric but if you take your time the result is very worthwhile.

This is my first time making undies and definitely not my last. They are without doubt the most expensive knickers I own, considering the cost of the fabric and the time taken to make them but undoubtedly the most luxurious and best fitting. And no VPL!!

I hereby reaffirm my allegiance to big pants!

More over at ooobop!

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1940s | Applique | Lingerie | Pattern Drafting

1940’s style french knickers. DIY

By on August 27, 2012

French knickers-a.k.a.tap-pants, petti-pants…. whatever you call them I love them, wear them and keep making more. These are my most recent efforts:

 As a rule I draft my own patterns and while doing these it occurred to me that there is no reason anyone else couldn’t do it too, to their own measurements. It’s a simple skirt block turned into a culotte block. Cut it out in soft thin fabrics, gussie-up with lace and there you have pretty french knickers. The pattern is also the basis for making 20’s/30’s style pyjama bottoms similar to those I made to go with the 1930’s style top I posted a pattern for on my blog a while back.


So to that end I’ve written a knicker  drafting tutorial for the DIY pattern-making inclined. At the end is included how to turn the pattern into an elasticated-waist wide-leg 30’s lounging pj style as well. There is also a brief text-only knicker sewing tutorial that accompanies it.   However, in a couple of weeks I’m hosting a full french knicker sew-along for those who’d like more pictorial step-by-step sewing instructions. (If you don’t wish to draft your own I even posted a pattern in two different sizes UK 10&14 (US 6&10))

   The lace bow appliqués..fun to do!.. were inspired by an article in 1939 Marie Claire magazine I bought a few weeks ago.

To make them you take a length of lace, tie it into a bow and tweak it about until you like it. Anchor it with a few pins onto your ironing board and gently press it flat. Carefully place and re-pin it in position on your fabric. I used a small straight stitch to sew it on…without basting first. But I will admit basting would have been a good idea; all the pins really got in the way and there is a big risk of breaking a machine needle. A minor miracle but this time I didn’t.



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Burlesque / Pinup | Giveaway | Lingerie

Corset-Story Giveaway Winners

By on August 10, 2012

The giveaway prizeThe lovely people at Corset-Story (with sister sites in the UK and Australia) gave us three of these pretty black lace boned corsets to give away to our readers.

It’s time to announce the winners!

Drumroll please….


Congratulations to Natascha, Debra Z and Toodles! Check your inbox for an email from me 😀


If you didn’t win, there’s always next time! Keep your eye on our facebook page for the inside scoop on upcoming giveaways so you don’t miss out.

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