Faux Crop Top (+ Tutorial)

 

Last year I happened to stumble across McCall’s 4933 (available on etsy here!!) and noticed that it was not a crop top, as it seemed, but a faker posing as a crop top. I couldn’t find it in my size so I did some sleuthing and the back of the pattern envelope shows that it is basically just an extra long top with a big tuck in it–I can do that! You can too!

I used my go-to crop top pattern, Simplicity 3480 which I think is from 1959 or 60. All you do is straighten out the side seams, making your top reeeeally long, and then take one big tuck at waist level to create the “overblouse” effect. It looks like the hem, but it’s really just a long pleat.

I’m a firm believer in wearing just about anything that makes you feel good, but if you feel like you can’t (or don’t want to) pull off a crop top for whatever reason, or you just want something a little different, is is easy to transform a regular top pattern into one for a tuck-in crop top. I’ve made a couple of these fake crop tops (or “tuck-in blouse with look of short overblouse” as the original pattern described them), and I loveeee them. They’re so easy to wear and offer good coverage while looking cool and, as my mom said, “neat and tidy.” You can see the full tutorial here!!

xoxo,
allie J.

Audrey Hepburn Skirt (self drafted)

I love a little peek of petticoat.

I love a little peek of petticoat.

I’ve been patting myself on the back since I finished this skirt. I’ve always been terrified of sewing anything without a pattern, and I’d convinced myself it would come out just awful. Boy was I happy when it didn’t!!!! I had originally intended to do the this double pleated skirt, but the pattern on this fabric wasn’t having it. I wasn’t about to behead Audrey!!

Whew!

Whew!

I did get to use the wrap top from the above mentioned pattern, which I just LOVE with this skirt. I think the plain-but-flirty top really lets the fun skirt print shine, ya know? More details on the blog! Sewn By Ashley

‘Pass the Peas’ Dress – a Vintage Mash-Up

Hello! I’ve just come back from adventures in Los Angeles and Hollywood, where as well as visiting all the sights, I also managed to do some fabric shopping. For some reason, it didn’t occur to me to visit Mood’s Los Angeles outpost; instead, I was excited about seeing Islands Fabrics, which is a whole store devoted to Hawaiian and Tropical fabric!

I was very restrained and only bought one piece, which is the barkcloth-weight leaves in the picture below, bottom right:

Juat a selection of what I purchased

The rest was picked up in the surrounding shops, and there were so many more than expected:


Most of them are earmarked for shirts for Mr Needles, would you believe, but I managed to sneak in one more for myself, the little garden peas print cotton. It was sitting unloved on a pavement at the bargain price of only $2 per yard (had to go back to Imperial for this visit; metric never really did take off in the US), so I felt sorry for it and bought a couple of yards.


At first I saw it as a blouse – it seemed like too much pattern for a dress – but this beauty had been playing on my mind:


This was part of my prize from Vintage Pattern Pledge for 2015, run by Kerry at Kestrel Makes and Marie at a Stitching Odyssey. It seems apt to use the pattern won from 2015’s pledge as part of 2016’s pledge, so I went for it!


Just one hitch – buying without a specific project in mind had backfired, and 2 yards wasn’t going to be enough to accommodate the flared skirt. Solution – use a straight skirt from another favourite pattern, Butterick 8571:


I’ve used this pattern twice before, once as illustrated here, and once just as the skirt here and it worked out fine both times.


I had planned to take some pretty photos in my garden, doing some gentle weeding or something, but the recent gales we experienced here in the UK have turned my neglected garden into a bit of a mess. But I carried on regardless – here’s the new dress in action:



I don’t think the change in skirt makes too much difference – it still looks 40s’ish. besides the skirt, I also had to adapt the sleeves to a shorter length in order to fit them in. But I gave them a little scalloped detail just as a reference to the original ruched shape:



Inside of sleeve with facing

 

 

Speaking of sleeves, I decided to insert the sleeve before the side seams were attached, on the flat, as it were. This was much easier and less fiddly than the usual technique of closing the side and underarm seam first, and the sleeve head came out pretty smooth:



The neckline is the main feature on this dress, being made up of 2 draped and pleated panels which then attach at the centre front and are covered with a little tab:

Before attachment to bodice…

 

 

…and after

 

 

I wasn’t quite sure how to finish this seam so that it was neat and attractive, and the instructions give you no guidance. I finally decided to bind it with bias cut from the same fabric as the lining:



The hem was also finished with matching bias strips:



I rarely line a dress fully – I get too hot! – and this was no exception. I used a gold poly to line the skirt, which you can see at the kick pleat at the back:


And finally it all gets closed up with a zip at the centre back, which is again a necessary departure from the pattern which saved fabric. But I did stay old-school and put the zip in by hand, with a little hook and eye at the top:


And that’s pretty much it. I’m off to learn how to drive this thing!


See you soon!

 

2 New Vintage Pattern Makes: Simplicity 3257 and Advance 8288

Hi y’all!

I’ve recently sewn/photographed/blogged about two new vintage makes. Simplicity 3257 is a c. late 1950s combo skirt/trouser pattern and went together really beautifully. I highly recommend it for the skirt, though I haven’t yet tried to sew up the trousers. The skirt only used three pieces and was very true to size. I enjoyed the instructions for certain vintage craftsmanship that we don’t often use today, like the lapped zipper. I’ve been doing it the “hard” way all this time!

s3257

 

 

 

Screen Shot 2016-04-04 at 3.10.24 PM

My other creation was inspired by c. 1957 Advance 8288. It’s a “sub-teen” pattern for coordinating separates. I LOVE having options and variety, and even though it looks like a dress I can wear each piece on its own! So wonderful. I didn’t actually sew with the pattern, but rather I used the art as inspiration and Frankenstein-ed two patterns from my collection to make the blouse. The skirt is a simple dirndl style with two side pockets. Both are made with vintage metal zippers from my stash, though the rayon fabric is new (from Gertie’s collection at Joann). My friend, who sewed up this project with me, did have the pattern and noted that it was simple to make but included a lot of wearing ease.

advance-8288

img_5384

img_5373-1

Links to the blog posts for more pics + sewing/pattern details:

Simplicity 3257

Advance 8288

 

Thanks for looking!

xx Lauren

Simplicity 4827: Maternity Skirt & Top

I finally got round to making the skirt and top view from Simplicity 4872, which looks to me late 50s/early 60s. I know vintage maternity patterns aren’t everyone’s cup of tea but after extensive research online I really couldn’t find that much that had been made up for me to look at. So if you’re considering making vintage maternity clothes this may be the post for you.

IMG_20160229_164427

I should really say at this point that I have never used a pattern with hole punches marking different parts of the pattern (i.e. darts etc) – is there a name for this sort of pattern? Truth is, I’ve always been a little put off and scared by them. It seems a little bit silly now I have used one, as there’s no difference really once you follow the instructions!

IMG_20160331_195200I added some vintage style buttons I had from an old issue of Mollie Makes magazine and voila, my top was complete.
IMAG0517

The Completed Outfit

To say it makes me look huge is an understatement, but here it is in all its glory.

Needless to say we had a good old laugh when we were taking the photos and in the end I gave up even trying to make it look good.

The truth is, the skirt has to have a lot of material because it’s cotton but it does have the unfortunate effect of making me look about twice the size.

IMG_20160403_134059_1

Alas, all was not lost. I actually quite like the top, even if I would rather never wear the skirt.

So I went and put a pair of my skinny mat jeans on and it looked quite good. In fact, I will be wearing it without a doubt.
IMG_20160403_140538

If you’d like to read more about the process and let me know what you think, please visit my blog www.staceystitch.com

 

Pin-Up Stripe Cigarette Pants

I recently made my first foray in to pants-making – although I was super apprehensive before getting started, it turned out to be so much more straightforward than I expected! I used the cigarette pant pattern from Gertie Sews Vintage Casual, and I’m so pleased with how they turned out :)

I sewed them up in a gorgeous vintage wool suiting fabric that was bought by my great-grandmother, and given to me last year by my grandmother – a very special fabric indeed! It was amazing to work with, especially on my vintage Singer 201P machine – it was vintage sewing heaven :D

I can’t wait to sew these up again! There fantastic for placement, and so much nicer than any RTW trousers I own. To read more about these and see more photos, head over to my blog! :)

Until next time,

Miss Maddy xx