1950s | Dresses | Vintage Sewing

Blue Bow Dress (Simplicity 1207)

By on July 8, 2015

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Hi everyone, I wanted to share one of my recent (well, not too recent) makes with all of my fellow vintage sewing lovers. I’m calling this one the blue bow dress and I made it with one of my favorite vintage patterns: Simplicity 1207, from 1955 (see below).

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The most challenging part about making this dress was definitely the piping on the yoke and sewing the area together properly- I think I ripped it out and started over about three times!

IMG_0523The fabric is a light blue chambray-type cotton which is really nice for a lightweight summer dress. I debated about lining it but ultimately opted not to. The bows are black grosgrain ribbon and I finished the edges off with some fray block.

I actually wore this dress for our engagement photos, which we took at Disneyland. Here’s my favorite one:

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If you’d like to see more photos and info, here’s my post on my blog, Mint Green Sewing Machine.

-Melissa

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1950s | Dresses | Vintage Sewing

A dress with a story

By on June 23, 2015

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If you remember the pink gingham dress from my last post on WSR, you will find the shape of this new dress familiar. I often sew up a pattern more than once and this one I wanted to tune a little to perfect the fit. It’s still not all that perfect, at least on me, which might be because of my round back. It kinda puckers in the middle back when I slouch, which I do a lot of, sadly. I guess it would be fine for someone with correct posture. I need to work on the fit of my clothes, I tend to get these issues with the fit on the back often.

I sewed this dress from a semi-sheer poly (my guess, I don’t really know what it is but it doesn’t wrinkle and the skirt is fluffy without a need for a pettitcoat) that I got loads of and I’m willing to sew more of it, because it’s cute and satisfying to work with. The dress is fully lined with cotton and blind hemmed by hand. It has a zipper at center back.

 

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How I came about the fabric is a touching story, really, but I don’t want to keep this post too long on WSR so feel welcome to click through and read all about it on my blog.

 

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1950s | Dresses | Vintage Sewing

Pink Gingham Dress

By on June 1, 2015
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I used a pattern for a cute party blouse that I’d found in a German sewing magazine –Der Neue Schnitt from December 1957 – you can see it pictured below. I chopped the blouse at the waist and then added a skirt –at first I thought I’d give a try to one suggested in the magazine but I was afraid it would be too obviously vintage. I opted instead for a simple one that’s sewn together out of seven panels: three broader and four narrower ones. They added up to a nice half circle skirt (in all honesty, I could’ve just cut a plain half circle skirt from my fabric but… where’s the fun in that?).

 

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The pattern for the bodice was, as usual, a bit large in the bust area and, which is in turn unusual, it was a bit large at the shoulders. This proved to make some wrinkling I didn’t suspect as it didn’t show when I was making a muslim. I’m in the process of making another dress out of this pattern and I decided to size it down and lower the shoulder seams this time.

 

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I finished the guts of the dress with my own bias binding, by hand in part (the neckline) and I’m really happy with how that looks. So neat! I still need to replace the zipper with a white one. I wanted to finish and wear the dress as soon as possible –obviously! –only to realise I’d run out of white zippers. Please tell me this happens to everyone else?

 

You can see more photos on my blog!

 

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1950s | Dresses | Vintage Sewing

A Vintage Dress in Blackpool

By on May 28, 2015

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Hello, I want to share with you a 50s style dress that I made recently. It is with retro print fabric by 20th Century Cloth which I loved as it is 150cm wide … we all love a circle skirt! The pattern is an Eliza M one, which again I love – it fits well. I altered it ever so slightly but it was easy to do.

The dress was perfect for a stroll on the beach and then a trip to Blackpool Tower Ballroom. I felt just the part. I also wore my favourite Christian Dior vintage sunnies… ever hopeful of a sunny afternoon…

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Hope you like it. I recommend having a look at 20th Century Cloth for fabrics – they have some gorgeous prints for vintage dressmaking.

If you want to pop on to my blog’s project page and see anything else I have made then click here.

Loving all of your beautiful designs and makings. Thanks for reading!

Lucy x

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1950s | Blouses | Dresses | Skirts | Vintage Sewing

50ies with an Asian touch

By on March 29, 2015

More or less ten years ago, my father gave me a Shalvar Kameez when he came back from a trip to Pakistan. Unfortunately it wasn’t my size and due to the lack of opportunities to wear such a garment in central Europe, altering it wasn’t ranging very high on my schedule.

When Tuppence Ha’Penny published a post on 50ies dresses inspired by indian Saris, I knew what I wanted my Shalwar Kameez to become.

But it took me until this year to finally start this project. I chose a 1955/6 Lutterloh-pattern, a blouse with a matching skirt. It fit without any alterations, I only changed the cut of the skirt a little, using the dupatta, the scarf, as a ruched bottom, the pattern was meant to be plain without the ruffled layer.

Waistband and collar are lined with fusible interfacing, the cotton fabric is very soft and not stiff enough without.

The blouse was made from the top (the kameez), the facings and the top part of the skirt from the trousers (the shalwar), the ruche as mentioned was the dupatta.

The fact that it consists of two parts enables me to wear it as seperates as well, I can well imagine the skirt with a plain white blouse or the blouse with high-waisted jeans.

To see more photos, including one “before”-pic, have a look at my blog, Parva sed apta.

Thank you for your attention,

ette

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1950s | Dresses | Pattern Drafting | Vintage Sewing

Rosemary Dress — a free pattern

By on December 30, 2014

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I decided to make a present for myself after Christmas has already passed and here it is, a dress I called Rosemary, based on a pattern from Der Neue Schnitt 5/1952 –number RK 35113.

This particular magazine came to me without the key and with just one pattern sheet. So if I wanted to sew this gorgeous thing, I had to trace all the lines on the sheet with my finger to find the right pattern pieces. Let me tell you that took long. But it was worth it. When I finally did find it, I decided to scan it and trace it digitally and I made it into a downloadable pattern. Head over to my blog to get it. Merry Christmas.

The sewing process was easy peasy, even with no instructions I just followed my gut feeling and it went smoothly. The pattern is also well fitted which actually means that it is a bit too loose for me, as it is intended for bust measurement of 92 cm/36in (and I’m more of an 88/34in). But I actually like that because it makes me feel I can easily move around in it, which I intend to do a lot of during the New Year’s Eve.

For more photos and a full story of this dress, head over to my blog.

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

mono dress & faux film noir

By on May 28, 2014
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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!

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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!

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More over on the blog

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