1950s | Dresses | Vintage Sewing

1950’s Cocktail Dress Revival

By on February 15, 2017

I hit a sewing bump 2 months ago. I lost all motivation to keep sewing. I stopped even trying to find a project to inspire me and then last week as I was cleaning out my closet I stumbled upon this 1950’s cocktail dress that I bought to fix up over a year ago. My fears of fixing it had sent it to the back of my closet where it had been forgotten.

It was riddled with holes. I started picking it apart piece by piece. This also allowed me to create a pattern out of the dress for future creations!

I created a lace overlay for all of the pieces, basted it on and then re-assembled the whole dress.

Once it was re-assembled I found I had created my dream cocktail dress out of what was once something I had at the bottom of the repair pile.

You can read more about this save over on my blog. In the meantime, I will be busy tackling that repair pile in hopes of finding another gem!

Continue Reading

1940s | Coats | Jackets | Vintage Sewing

First Vintage-style Coat, Butterick B5824

By on February 14, 2017

Butterick B5824, Vintage Coat by Vintage on Tap

Not going to lie, I wanna give myself some props for FINALLY diving in and making a jacket. I’ve been psyching myself out for years now and now that the first one is done, I can breathe a sigh of relief. Not to say it was easy exactly- but at the very least it wasn’t the Big Bad Wolf that I thought it was going to be.

Butterick B5824, Vintage Coat by Vintage on Tap

My plaid matching could have been better, but its generally passable. I also underlined the ENTIRE coat, so I can say that this one is officially my warmest coat, even more so than my RTW.

Butterick B5824, Vintage Coat by Vintage on Tap

I lopped off about 4 inches from the bottom of the coat, so it would fall just past my knees. I’m 5’2″ and this thing would have dwarfed me. I also took in the lapels by about an inch and a half so they would be just above my shoulder (most accurate photo for that is on the mannequin)
Vintage on Tap coat inspiration

Another big change I did was to add a belt instead of the button closure. I was inspired by two things-

  • I think the tie is faster to deal with when you’re out and about
  • I didn’t want to deal with bound button holes
More photos of this coat are over on my blog.
Video tutorial for lining technique on my YouTube channel.

Continue Reading

1950s | 1960s | Dresses | Vintage Sewing

Blue Jacquard 1950’s Dress

By on February 6, 2017

I imagine many people here on We Sew Retro are big fans of Gretchen Hirsche’s wonderful fabric designs for Fabric Traditions available at Joanns, and I have seen so many lovely things made from her fabrics around the community! I recently picked up a few yards of the blue jacquard from one of Gertie’s fall fabric collections in the red tag area of Joanns (always check out the red tag area, is it usually full of dated sad decorator fabrics? Well, yes. Are there occasional hidden gems? Also yes!). I decided the shining sapphire blue jacquard would make a perfect 1950’s style wiggle dress and got started right away!

It was really important for this dress to make sure the raw edges of each seam were finished in some way since I knew I didn’t want to bother with a lining. Also with most jacquards and brocades I like to finish the edges no matter what as they seem to looove to fray apart the moment they are cut! So the first thing I did after cutting out this dress was overlock all of the edges with my serger. The bodice is a simple “kimono” sleeve style which is super simple to make up (just 6 darts total and the side seams) as you don’t have to fiddle with setting in proper sleeves as they are cut into the design. I totally recommend this style of bodice for those who have trouble with sleeves! The neckline was finished with a self fabric facing that I tacked down with tiny thread tacks to help it stay smooth. With a center back zipper and hand sewn hem finished, it was ready to wear! Too bad I didn’t make this number in time for New Years Eve as it would make a perfect holiday party dress! Next year perhaps 🙂

For more photos visit the full outfit post over on The Closet Historian!

Continue Reading

Vintage Sewing

Another Historical Vintage

By on February 1, 2017

Hi

This is another of the historical costumes that I made in the Victorian era.

This one uses TV462 the tail bodice from 1883 and a simplicity costume skirt.  The bustle is made using a pillow.

I wasn’t as happy with this one as some of the others, not that it doesn’t look good – but I think I could have made it better.  Perhaps I was pressed for time or maybe I am just to scared of over doing it that I hold back to much.

What do you think I should have done to jazz this one up.

 

Thanks For reading and for more info please see my blog

Continue Reading

1960s | Coats | Dresses | Vintage Sewing

Les Fleurs Swing Dress (Simplicity 6820, 1966)

By on January 31, 2017

I posted my leopard print version of this pattern last week and today I’m back with a dark floral variation–specifically the gorgeous Les Fleurs in navy from Cotton and Steel’s collab with Rifle Paper Company. I lovvvve this fabric, and I wanted to use it with few seam lines, so Simplicity 6820 seemed perfect. I’m wearing it with my pink bow coat made last year from Simplicity reprint 1197–a perfect match!

See more on my blog here!

Continue Reading

Vintage Sewing

PDF Patterns Flash Sale

By on January 28, 2017

We’ve been getting requests for PDF patterns for a while and I’ve just been too busy to get it all set up, but thanks to several pots of coffee and a babysitter we now proudly host digital sewing patterns from a selection of indy pattern companies in the WeSewRetro shop. YAY!

Scroll down to see our favorites – clicking the pics should take you to more details.

To celebrate (and frankly because I am on the verge of caffeine overdose) we’re running a 15% flash sale on PDF products for the next 48 hours only with coupon code DIGITAL

That means you only have this weekend and a teeny tiny bit of Monday to pick out your favorites. Go to it 😀

How To Do Fashion (from Denmark)

Jennifer Lauren (from New Zealand)

Hey June (from the USA)

Cecilia Theresa Design (from Germany)

Maven Patterns (from England)

In non-PDF news….

We’ve restocked Sew Over It paper patterns and now carry the Ultimate Pencil Skirt.

Another new arrival is our selection of Maxant ‘Cover your own belt’ kits. It has been belt-a-palooza since these arrived and we’re now dangerously close to having more belts than outfits, but they are just so much fun. It’s slightly embarrassing how satisfying it is to show off a dress and then casually add “….and here is the matching belt I made…”

If you fancy having a go yourself, take 15% off any Maxant product for the next 48hours with the coupon code BELTAPALOOZA

Stuck? Need help? Got a question? Email katherine@WeSewRetro.com

Continue Reading