Simplicity 1609 Classic Shift with Piping

I’ve been sewing a lot of 1960’s patterns this year and one of the most icon styles of the 60’s of course is a shift dress.

While antiquing some time ago I came across this lovely vintage pink cotton fabric with a lovely turquoise blue flower print.

I loved the print so much I knew I needed to make something that highlighted the fabric and decided to go with a simple shift dress.

Akram's Ideas: Simplicity 1609

Classic Shift Dress made from vintage fabric

For this project I decided to use Simplicity 1609 a reproduction of a 1960’s JIFFY shift dress.

To add extra interest I added turquoise piping around the neckline and armholes.

Akram's Ideas: Simplicity 1609

I love the addition of the piping on the neck and armholes.

Can you believe I’d never made a shift dress before, it’s true. I don’t know why?

I love this dress so much, it’s fun and stylish.

To read more about my process for making this dress check out my blog Akram’s Ideas ( )

Simplicity 1364 My Favorite Blouse

I have a new favorite blouse pattern and it is Simplicity 1364.

This 1960’s reproduction pattern really is a JIFFY pattern.

Akram's Ideas: Simplicity 1364 in pink

My first version made in pink floral

My first version was a pink floral cotton, which I made as a test, since the pattern was new to me.

I loved it so much I immediately made a second one. This time out of a white floral and used French seams throughout.

I also made matching hair scarves for both blouses.

Akram's Ideas: Simplicity 1364 in pink

Second Simplicity 1364 in white floral

This blouse looks great with jeans or a skirt and is so light and comfy to wear in the summer heat.

Making this blouse was easy, it consists of only two main pattern pieces and sews up in no time.  I made even easier to put together by making a few modifications.

To read more about my process and modifications check at my blog Akram’s Ideas (


McCalls 6331 Turned Into a Rockabilly Playsuit

This was perhaps one of the funnest challenges I have presented myself with. I have been dying to have a vintage playsuit but just do not have the funds to buy a true vintage one, nor a vintage pattern for one! But I did have the funds to buy an older McCalls romper pattern, #6331 that would do the job. A little bit of creativity combined with, what I am calling, a fly-away circle skirt, and I had the pin-up/rockabilly outfit of my dreams to wear to a beach bash dance I was attending.

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You can read more about this make over on my blog, Seams Sew Retro!

Simplicity 8498 “Old Faithful” Made Petite

While searching for a quick and easy to make dress pattern, I came across my wonderfully versatile early 1970s Simplicity pattern which has earned the nickname “Old Faithful” as it hasn’t let me down yet!

I love the options for the dress. It can be, sleeveless, short- or long-sleeved; short or long in length; and can also have a belt with a button fastening at the back.

It’s suitable for a range of materials including cottons, linen, synthetics, crepes, brocade, wool and many more.

Depending on the style and material you choose, you can make a comfortable day dress or a striking evening dress suitable for any season!

1970s Simplicity Pattern “Old Faithful”

Adjusting the Length

One of the main reasons I make my own clothes is because I’m a petite fit with an extra short waist! This pattern is easy to adapt to fit your length, whether short or tall on the skirt and sleeves.

1970s Simplicity Pattern “Old Faithful” 01

1970s Simplicity Pattern “Old Faithful” 02

So I started by measuring from the shortening/lengthening point, the amount I needed to decrease, then folded the pattern down and pinned it. Simple!

Making the Dress

1970s Simplicity Pattern “Old Faithful” 03

1970s Simplicity Pattern “Old Faithful” 04

Arranging the pieces on the material was easy thanks to the simple instructions and the directions on each individual piece. They clearly explain how to follow the grain as well as how to make sure the pattern of the material flows well.

I decided to make a short sleeve, knee length dress so folded up the parts of the skirt and sleeve that I didn’t need.

1970s Simplicity Pattern “Old Faithful” 05

My dress fits perfectly and is incredibly comfortable! Once again the pattern hasn’t let me down!

1970s Simplicity Pattern “Old Faithful” - Result