Because it is summer somewhere….

A friend had an amazing piece of fabric and wanted a vintage bathing suit made from it. The border print fabric had 9 individually blocked and decorated ballerinas and the pattern that she really liked was Simplicity 2441 (sorry about the photo quality of the fabric… )

Being woefully short of fabric to actually make the bathing suit, I started to experiment with placement of the ballerinas on the fabric with my computer first (because I am pretty sure I will never see fabric like this again!)

 

We finally came up with a design that involved my completely discarding the plain blue fabric (because there wasn’t enough, and I couldn’t find a perfect match) and patchworking the border print fabric to the 8 panels of the bathing suit skirt. Apart from being a bit busy on the inside of the bathing suit, it ended up being not too noticeable from the outside. And I still have a leftover ballerina!

And the best part of all is that she got to wear it earlier this year on the last day of summer here in Australia at Red Beach –  so you could say it was sea-worthy.

 

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Sorry for posting so soon again but the weather is so horrible here right now that there is plenty time for sewing pretty dresses (-: In an effort to forgot the dreadful storms that we had here I sewed another „I wish it was summer“ dress.  I used Buttericks B5509 pattern from the Making History series as a basis. I had already bought it months ago as I love all options of this set and would like to sew all of them (albeit as dresses and not as aprons as they are meant to be). I got the flower fabric at Alfatex and decided to use it for pattern D, a cute empire-waist dress. The fabric is very transparent and therefore I lined the whole dress in white fabric. I guess I still should not stand directly in the sun but as the we don’t have much sun right now that doesn’t matter much… The fit of the dress is pretty perfect and it is cleverly constructed, I just had to think about how to transform an apron into a dress. It was actually super simple – I just closed the back seam and sewed a zipper on. The bodice is open on the back and is tied with a ribbon, which feels very airy and summery. Empire-waist dresses always remind me a bit of maternity fashion and also the finished dress looked a bit too plain for me and so I bought green pseudo-velour ribbon to counteract this and to make the dress a bit more graphical. I also gathered the hem on the front and back side and added a bows – and I am so happy with the finished silhouette!

You can find a few more pictures on my blog, Draped in Cloudlets (-:

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I have a soft spot for vintage party dress patterns. The problem is, I almost never have a reason to wear a vintage party dress. Imagine my excitement when I was able to make my own bridesmaid dress for a friend’s wedding!
I decided to use Butterick 9561 from 1961 . I was instantly drawn to the faux wrap bodice. I did make some changes to the pattern, for instance, omitting the modesty panel and reducing the skirt volume by half . My fabric is also vintage; though I estimate about twenty years more recent than the pattern. I bought nearly seven yards of this lovely double layered lace fabric from an estate sale and it was perfect for the occasion!

I’ve written in further detail regarding my modifications and posted additional photos over on my BLOG. It was a lot of fun to have a reason to sew a ‘fancy’ dress. I also think this pattern would be great sewn in cotton as an everyday dress, so there may be more Butterick 9561s in my future.

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Hello retro sewists! I haven’t posted in awhile, but I’m here today to ask you for some help. I’m getting married next year and I’ve decided to make my own dress. I found a gorgeous vintage dress online that I would like to re-create, but I’m having trouble locating a pattern (I don’t really know how to draft my own, so I want something to go off of). Below is  a picture of the dress I would like to re-create (in my size), from Dear Golden Vintage:

(Source: Dear Golden Vintage)

I think that this pink dress below, also from Dear Golden Vintage, might have been made from the same pattern, which makes me think it may have been sewn from a commercial pattern, rather than being custom-made.

(Source: Dear Golden Vintage)

I looked through many patterns on the Vintage Patterns Wiki and online, but none seemed to be quite right, but then I stumbled upon and image of this pattern, Advance 8394. It seems like the closest approximation so far, despite the skirt being completely different.

(Source: Vintage Patterns Wiki)

The trouble is, there are no copies currently for sale online that I can see, so I was wondering if anyone has a copy of Advance 8394 that I could buy, borrow, or rent. I would pay the shipping both ways if I could just borrow one to trace off. Any size is fine!

Or, alternatively does anyone have the actual pattern for the two dresses that I can’t find? That would be pretty amazing!

If I can’t find the pattern, I’ll go ahead and try my hand at drafting one, but I thought it was worth a shot to see if I could locate a pattern first.I also posted about my search here on my blog, Scavenger Hunt.

Thanks in advance for any help you can give me! I’m so glad I can tap into this amazing online community!

Happy Sewing!

-Melissa

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