1950s | Pattern Drafting | Skirts | Vintage Sewing

Poppies summer skirt

By on August 5, 2014
Hi, this is me wearing a skirt I made from an old drafting book. I drafted the heart shape waistband myself.
The pockets on my skirt are thanks to Bex at Subversive Femme. I read her blog and in January 2014 she posted this pattern from a dress she had made. I thought they looked so cool I had to use them myself. I love them!
The braid/ric rac that I used I made myself. I found a tutorial on pinterst on how to do it. It’s basically taking bias strips and playing with the tension on your machine and using the blind hem stitch. I had this fabric in my stash and the colour match is so good to my skirt fabric. Very happy!
I added plastic boning into the waistband. I didn’t have enough poppy fabric so used some spare gingham. Plastic boning is really easy to use – I just zig zagged along the edges. I also used interfacing on the waistband too.
This is the pattern I used from an Enid Gilchrist drafting book. I’ve used this pattern 3 times now for 3 very different skirts.

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1960s | Dresses | Pattern Drafting | Vintage Sewing

Scallop Flutter Dress

By on July 16, 2014

Hi all – I’m back!

It’s been both a busy and rough year for me so far, however now I’m back to creating on a much more regular basis.

This is my newest self-drafted retro-inspired piece. I’m totally in love with the print! I also integrated sort of a cap sleeve/capelet feel into the yoke by doing a drop shoulder technique with the patternmaking part.

I was also really excited that the Ford Galaxie was there in my neighborhood. Someone who lives there must own it since it’s always parked on the same street.

As always, you can see more detail photos on the blog. I don’t want to be a hog and take up too much room! <3

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1940s | Pattern Drafting | Vintage Sewing

One Old Book and Two New Tops

By on July 8, 2014

 

The Pictorial Guide to Modern Home Dressmaking

The Pictorial Guide to Modern Home Dressmaking dates from 1940, and contains pages and pages of information about pattern drawing and adjusting.  This was the first book I turned to when I decided to make myself two new tops for the summer. First I followed the instructions for drafting a bodice pattern, made up a toile in calico, and then had to make serious adjustments and start again.

Once I was happy with the fit I made a top in batik which I had been lucky enough to find in a charity shop.

 

Batik Summer Top

Here is my daughter modelling the batik top for me.  We are close enough in size for her to model clothes I have made for myself.  The top was very easy to make – essentially it is from a basic bodice pattern, neckline and armholes adjusted for a cool summery look, with darts tapering the cut slightly to the waist, and a box pleated frill added at the bottom.

Having made this top and being satisfied with the fit and style, I then made a second version in high quality cotton.

 

Oakshott Herringbone Cotton Summer Top

Here is the blue version in a herringbone cotton.  The cotton is a medium weight shirting with a beautiful soft feel.  This blue cotton has a much more vintage look to it than the batik, and it called for dark navy buttons and a decorative ribbon to trim to give it a detailed finished effect.

These tops are lovely and cool to wear, and quick and easy to make.  I hope they give plenty of inspiration for everyone who is busy revamping their summer wardrobe.  For lots more information and photos of the book and the two tops, just follow the three links to the three separate posts in my blog.

 

 

 

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1950s | Dresses | Pattern Drafting | Vintage Sewing

Coffee pots dress – 1950’s

By on June 19, 2014

Hi, this is a dress with rather fab coffee pots and tea cups on!  I drafted the pattern using an Enid Gilchrist book.  I lurve these books and have made a few things using them.

I decided to add a gathered skirt to the bodice because I had a large piece of fabric and only have one seam on the left side where the invisible zip is.  I managed to match the pattern on this seam too so it is almost invisible too.  For an extra detail I added blue ric rac to the waist seam and along the edges of the sleeves and neck edge.  The sleeves are ‘grown on’ sleeves with a little gusset under the arm.  This pattern appealed to me for that so that I wouldn’t cut up any of the pots and cups on the fabric.

In this photo I’m wearing a cotton cardigan I made last year from a Rowan pattern.  The pattern had a peplum but I chose to start from the waist edge instead so that I could wear it with full skirts and you can still see my waist.

 

 

 

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1940s | 1950s | Dresses | Mad Men Inspired | Pattern Drafting | Vintage Sewing

mono dress & faux film noir

By on May 28, 2014

self drafted dress film noir

This dress is my second attempt at pattern drafting. I re-drafted my bodice block and made further alterations but still I need to take some volume from the back.

This was apparent when I came to draft the skirt. There was precious little difference between the back hip and waist measurements!

But I went with it after checking the measurements of the bodice.

It all works reasonably well but the side seams sit a little bit too forward for my liking and I’m sure by taking out the excess at the back it will make them sit properly. And will also give the back skirt a better shape at the waist!

self drafted wiggle dress

Hoping to prove myself right with the next version.

The design is based on a general 50s shape but I really like the angular necklines of the 40s. I’m not sure of the fabric content. It could be upholstery material! About 6 meters was given to me so I figured I could use it for this test dress and have plenty left over if I messed up!

As for the crazy  photos, Mr Ooobop was determined to practice with his new camera flash and who am I to argue?! A little wave of the Photoshop wand and abracadabra, all sorts of crazy faux film noir was achieved!

self drafted wiggle dress

More over on the blog

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1950s | Dresses | Pattern Drafting

Tiers

By on May 19, 2014

I found this lovely image in one of my vintage magazines. You could order this pattern from them. Back in the summer of 1956.

I immediately wanted to make this dress, so I just had to draft my own. I wrote a separate blog post about how to make a skirt like this, in case you are interested.

Unfortunately, I didn’t have any fabric with bold black-and-white stripes so I used a very fine stripe from my stash. It’s less dramatic but it works.

I’m happy with the dress but I think I will really have to wear this one with a fluffy petticoat (I usually don’t, but this dress just doesn’t look right without it).

More story and more pictures on my blog.

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1950s | Dresses | Modern Patterns | Pattern Drafting | Pattern Sizing | Vintage Sewing

The Walk Away Dress–Sacrilegious Fit Solution?

By on May 4, 2014

Hello All

 

With winter in the Midwest finally behind us, I’d like to make some dresses from my fabric stockpile. Of course to get me back into the swing of things, I thought I’d do the Butterick 4790.   I know full well that the re-released pattern comes with a slew of fit issues.  So I pose the question: has anyone used a zipper?

I know that it’s not conventional, but neither am I.  The re-release pattern uses a full circle skirt instead of a half circle as the original did. Wouldn’t a zipper up the front balance out the weight of the back of the dress and keep it closed for less of a flyaway mishap?

Here is an example of the full zipper.  The zipper would also eliminate the need for a button closure.  I’m picturing something like a coat zipper that comes all the way unzipped.

Image courtesy of SoulStiches Blog as mine would not load.

 

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