Decades of Style

Sew Retro Readers,
It took me weeks at home recovering from surgery to finally complete my Decades of Style 1944 House Dress. I bought the fabric online from Gorgeous Fabrics last year . (Note to self: I am going to start attaching tags to my fabric with date and source). The colors of this dress were inspired by a Rose Bowl game here in Pasadena – actually the BCS Championship in
Pasadena (Univ. of Alabama v. Univ. of Texas). I thought I am going to make a dress to wear with my brother to the next Alabama championship – it’s only taken me over three years. The dress above, is with no flash, and below, with flash.

I also wanted to make this pattern for quite some time as well.  I made a toile, first, and made the adjustments.  Then I underlined all the pieces and serged the edges.  I changed my serger thread to maxi-lock – and guess what?  Perfect serging!  Just as I was about to purchase a Babylock evolution.  Blast!

My final thought is that this pattern is drafted ridiculously well.  I made only minor changes overall.  Apparently, it has been redrafted from the original pattern in today’s sizes by Decades of Styles – which I love.  It took me a week to make this dress after the toile.   This dress I really focused on construction techniques – and I still wasn’t 100 percent happy with the execution.  Yes, I would definitely make this again, most likely with vintage-insprired fabric.

More details cross-posted at my blog, Pammie & the Ps.

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Even though it’s not exactly Spring yet here in Wisconsin, I’m soaking up sun whenever I can find it!  Last weekend my husband was kind enough to snap a few shots of my new Decades of Style 1930s Sweetheart Overalls (using his 1951 Oshkosh Truck as a most appropriate prop).  More details and pics at my blog.

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This summer I completed the housedress from Decades of Style, a project I started more than a year ago.

The pattern
The pattern is a reproduction pattern from 1944. I actually ran across the original pattern at one point and the original had another sleeves option. This pattern however only contains the short wide sleeves. It has a princess cut, a square necklines, buttons down the front and diamond shapes pockets. It comes in nine sizes.

The layout was very clear and it was easy to cut out and sew. I was a bit apprehensive as a princess cut rarely works for my figure, but there is an extra bust dart that helps to shape that area, so it worked out surprisingly well.

My adaptions
I did several. I omitted the ric-rac braid and I also changed the shape on the pockets. I kept the square necklines, but I didn’t finished the same way as the pattern suggested. One thing I noticed when I finally started on the project again was that I had added some girth since I cut it out. It simply wouldn’t work to overlap the fronts for a button closure. I was thinking of putting in a zipper, but then I realized that the dress was actually wide enough to pull over my head. Having recently purchased to authentic 40’s housedresses that both are pulled over the head, I didn’t feel that that was too much cheating. However, if I ever need it, it’s easy to open the front seam and put in buttons.

Slightly wrinkly after a very hot day.

I made it out of fine cotton and it turned out to be a very light and comfortable summer dress for hot days. Nothing fancy, but perfectly wearable outside your home. I have some fabric left, so I think I will make a belt to give the dress a bit more shape. In retrospect I ought to have fiddled a bit more with the fit around the bust as it looks slightly wonky there. However, I really liked working with this pattern and I think it ought to be fairly easy to make sleeve and neckline variation.

X-posted at my own blog

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How nice to be in Sew Retro’s new home – I haven’t posted on the new site yet, good to be back.

A real treat to make these. A sweetheart of a pattern from Decades Of Style pattern company (pattern no: 3008) – the instructions are bold and clear. They took me two days to complete without much fiddly finishing off.

What else can I say in praise of these overalls – they are really comfy, I went out dancing in them last night – rigorous Lindy Hopping in very hot sweaty conditions. They stood up to a lot of twisting and leg kicking – I did remember to reinforce the crotch seam mind you.
The fabric was a cheap polyester, for ease of care really – I made the overalls as a dancing outfit specifically and they’d need a good old wash after each outing. I’d make them again in a nice medium weight suiting for posh wear I think.

More sewing details can be found on my blog, I did have a few button hole nightmares!

The cheesecake photo shoot serves to show off my newest Cruiser Bike that I got in the summer.

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