Vintage Sewing

Embroidery for Christmas

By on December 26, 2015

I embroidered on the gingham apron to make a Christmas present – unfortunately I didn’t realise you were supposed to embroider on the dark patches not the light ones, and there was a fifty/fifty chance of getting it right at random… I got it wrong!
So the pattern doesn’t show up quite as well as it might have done.

Embroidered design
Embroidered design

It’s pretty, though. I adapted the design from one for a ‘corner’ and had to do several sets of frantic last-minute alterations when I realised that the outside didn’t line up with the inside if you just did a straight motif – unfortunately I’d already put in all the central flowers by that point.
I don’t think anyone will notice that it’s off-centre on the apron by a couple of checks as a result…

Front view of apron being worn

I used some gold metallic embroidery floss for the yellow centres of the flowers, which I found quite hard to work with. (I thought the outside ‘lace’ might show up better if I went round the edge with gold, but swiftly abandoned that idea!)

Close-up of flowers
Close-up of flowers

Hmm, it hasn’t come out very well in the photo. The centres as beautifully shiny in real life.

The gold floss is safe to wash at 60 degrees C, according to the label, and as this is an apron it will probably need to get washed. So I decided it would be safer to cover the loose ends of all the threads on the back with a lightweight patch, even though I did fasten them in well. (Well enough that I had considerable difficulty in ripping them out again when I decided to change the design!)

I used a square of old cotton sheet, which was suitably thin and off-white, and hemmed it down all round for strength rather than beauty using off-white thread. Luckily the little hem-stitches don’t really show up amid the busy gingham pattern on the right side. The apron fabric is quite coarse, so very well suited to this type of work.

Patch on wrong side of work to cover the loose ends
Patch on wrong side of work to cover the loose ends
Click for close-ups.
Close-up of hemming
Close-up of hemming

Continue Reading

Vintage Sewing

Expert Guidance Sought ….

By on October 9, 2013

Having more genuine vintage fabric than anyone individual should have I have a creative juices overload so seek the expert guidance of you all dear readers of WeSewRetro!

A new purchase to my collection, this delicious 1950’s crepe is even better in the ‘flesh’. (Purchased here)

Now I do a storm in cushion families BUT I fear I am hemming myself in (see…. everything is sewing based)!

For my up and coming vintage fair

CHOICE 1 : Full Apron …. from a vintage pattern of course

CHOICE 2: A little girls ‘party’ dress, again from a vintage pattern

What do you think? Other ideas are welcome, if I recall without digging it out I have 2m of this oh sew pretty fabric.

As always thank you for your time x

Continue Reading


I Beat The Monday Blues YEEHA!

By on September 16, 2013

Having decided to be a bit more organised than I was over the weekend and truly dear reader that’s not too hard given that I achieved diddly squat due to an overly active creative brain that resulted in total inertia!!

After a good rummage in my drawers I found the vintage pattern I was looking for. After a few modifications to suit I got stuck in and must confess to being more than slightly pleased with the finished article. It will be joining me at Judys Vintage Fair at Spitalfields in November along with my growing stash that I shall be attempting to sell for good old English Pounds 🙂

Simple yet gorgeous I think! Hope you agree ?

Continue Reading

1950s | Aprons | Vintage Sewing

Butterick 6743 Apron.

By on September 9, 2012
“You’re the talk of the bridge club in these snappy aprons.”

I finally have my sewing groove back! To kick things off here is an apron made from Butterick 6743. According to the Vintage Pattern Wiki, this pattern was sold in 1953. I bought my copy from Etsy last year in factory fold condition. It is hard to imagine how the pattern had not been used until for over 50 years as it’s just too darn cute!

The pattern asks for one yard of fabric and five yards of bias binding. There are four pattern pieces: front section (cut 1), side section (cut 2), waist band (cut 1) and tie ends (cut 2). I selected a medium weight cotton fabric in a retro print that I thought would be perfect as a half apron. To set it off I paired it with a musky pink bias binding. I sewed up View C (original pattern photo at end of post) in only a couple of hours.




“Saucer patterns with novel loop holes.”

The curved edges were finished with bias binding making finishing these seam a breeze. I sewed the waist band to the apron panels using a French seam, and double folded all the tie edges to give a nice neat look and to make the bands slightly sturdier. Here are a few shot of the underside of the apron.




Now I worry it is too cute to use! Can one wear an apron as a fashion accessory?

And finally, here is the original pattern in all its glory…

Please feel free to follow all my sewing activities as my blog Buckingham Road.
Sam xox

Continue Reading


In the doghouse, again?

By on February 5, 2012

I did a bit of a stash rearrange recently and found I had the perfect light brown (with white polka dots) fabric to make up McCall 957.

Rather than choose the colouring of the main illustration on the pattern as a guide, I opted forthe more obscure white apron with blue check in the background.

All was going swimmingly until I went shopping for blue ric-rac today and discovered that I could only get a dark or a light blue – and I didn’t really care for either. So here my little apron project has stalled for the time being (with a mental note to gather supplies prior to cutting out and sewing) without a roof on my doghouse.

Of course, I did also have enough red and white striped fabric to complete both his and hers, and the fabric shop had loads of red ric-rac, so when I finally crawl out of my little self inflicted dog house, I might have another go at actually finishing a pair of these aprons.



Continue Reading


Scotties in the Kitchen

By on December 5, 2011

Just in time for all the holiday parties (how many, exactly, do I think I’m going to host this season?), I finished my December apron!   If you’re interested,  I’m hosting an apron challenge over at my blog, Willow Homestead.  This month was made from a remnant of taffeta with flocked – yes, flocked, how cool is that? – Scotty dogs.  And with three layers of frilly frou-frou ruffle, this could be the most impractical apron ever.  But then, does it really matter?  More details on my blog.

Continue Reading