1940s | Dresses | Vintage Sewing

1940s Organic Cotton Gingham Dress

By on October 12, 2017

5955 McCall sewing pattern, 1946

After watching the brilliant documentary The True Cost, about the human and environmental impact of fast fashion, I decided to try and make a completely ethically-produced dress. I chose to make it using an original sewing pattern from 1946 that I had won in a competition on the Vintage Sewing Pattern Nerds Facebook group. It’s a little later than my usual style dress (1930s to early 40s) but, as it looked like it could easily be from the late 1930s, I decided to go for it.

1940s organic gingham dress

The fabric I used was 100% organic cotton gingham from the Organic Textile Company. They produce this beautiful soft cotton in two different sizes and both in three different colours, red, blue and black. As I loved both sizes so much I chose to use both in red and use the smaller one on the bias. Of course, each of the pieces I cut in this way had to be stabilised with straight cut facings.

1940s organic gingham cotton dress

All of the trimmings I used were either vintage pieces or items I already owned, even the ivory cotton thread I used to sew the dress up. This all adds up to an almost totally ethically made garment. However, there is one thing I did have to buy new, and it wasn’t organic or ethically-produced, so I can’t quite say this dress is 100% ethical.

Head on over to my blog to find out what this item was and, if you want to know more about why it isn’t ethical, have a read of the comments at the end of the post.

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1950s | Accessories | Dresses | Jackets | Vintage Sewing

Hommage to Audrey Hepburn – Chic in late 50s

By on October 1, 2017

Hello everyone
This is my first time posting here.
Therefore I’d like to introduce myself shortly: I am 23, live in the heart of Switzerland and started sewing about 2 years ago. With my mom and sister I blog at PeterSilie&Co – you are of course welcome to visit us.

Vintage Dress Beyer Mode, PeterSilie&Co, 60s
Just like you, I love to sew vintage sewing patterns. Just sometimes it is really frustrating. It can take forever to recreate a vintage sewing pattern. So, when I spotted this pattern, I knew this would be an easy to sew dress.

And because I am ambitious and the dress alone would be to easy to sew, I decided to make a matching jacket. For the jacket I used a pattern, I’ve sewn before from Neuer Schnitt 1962.
The dress was quite easy to make. But of course I had to change the darts – they were way to high. And it took some time to pleat the skirt in the perfect way to match with the bodice.
Because I made the jacket the second time, I didn’t have to make any changes. Due to the fact, that I wanted to wear the jacket with other dresses as well, the jacket is black. The plaid is only on the inside, so I can always decide, if I want to show the plaid (or not).
But my highlight of the look are the belts. At first I thought that it is just a long belt wrapped around the waist several times. Instead the fabric is draped. The instructions were very short (as usual) and I just made them up on the go. And I love, love, love the outcome. (I even wrote a little tutorial: Right now only in German, but if google translator is not working out for you, let me know.)
If you wish to see more swoon worthy pictures, you can hop over to our blog PeterSilie&Co – and yes, the shooting was definitely Audrey Hepburn inspired.
I only wish, I would have written more text (to be able to show more photographs).
Till next time

Sabine

Vintage Plaid dress, Beyer Mode PeterSilie&Co

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1930s | Dresses | Vintage Sewing

1930s Print Quilting Cotton Dress

By on September 7, 2017

1930s feedsack print dress

As a 1930s obsessive I’m often drawn to the beautiful 1930s reproduction prints on quilting cotton fabric. However, I’ve always been weary of it because of its stiffness and just knew it wouldn’t be right for the style of clothing I love to make. Genuine 1930s dresses were always made using a softer fabric with plenty of drape, whether it be cotton, linen, rayon, silk or wool, which always hung well.

However, when I came across this amazing feedsack reproduction print I just couldn’t resist it. I knew straight away that I wanted to make a Dust Bowl style dress with it, despite knowing it was going to be challenge.

I used an original pattern from the very early 1930s and, although it was my size, I did have to make quite a lot of adjustments. The main issue was the way it fitted due to the stiffness of the fabric and there was too much bulk everywhere. If it had been made in a much softer fabric, this would’ve gathered perfectly around the waist when the belt was added.

1930s feedsack print dress

For more information about the troubles I had with the fit of this dress, please have a read of my post here. However, if you’d just like to skip to the outfit post to see all of the lovely 1930s detailing and find out more about Dust Bowl dresses, then you can view the post here.

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1950s | Dresses | Jackets

Vintage Simplicity 2512

By on May 25, 2017
Akram's Ideas: A Vintage 50’s Dress Made for My Sister Z

A few weekend’s ago my sister Miss Z (as we call her) came down to visit me.

During that weekend she asked if I couldn’t sew her up a vintage style dress, and I was like YES!

Simplicity 2512

Akram's Ideas: A Vintage 50’s Dress Made for My Sister Z
We used Vintage Simplicity 2512

We went through my pattern stash and found Simplicity 2512, which I’m pretty sure is from the 1950’s.

After going through my fabric stash Miss Z found some great coordinating floral fabric, which I’m thinking was meant to be a pillow case and bed sheet.

Akram's Ideas: A Vintage 50’s Dress Made for My Sister Z
I added a gusset to the side seam

The dress came together pretty easily, though the pattern was meant for teens and really didn’t consider much of a bust. So there were a bit of adjustment that I needed to make to get the bodice to fit, but overall it was an easy pattern.

McCalls 5006

Akram's Ideas: A Vintage 50’s Dress Made for My Sister Z
We decided to make a shrug to go with the dress

Since it can be a little chilly in during the spring we decided to make a matching shrug to go with the dress.

We used McCalls 5006 and used some black jersey fabric to knock out the shrug in no time.

The shrug really pulls together the dress and makes it wearable in the cooler temps.

Miss Z’s Dress

I’m happy to say Miss Z loved her dress and matching shrug. She even used some leftover fabric to make herself a matching hair scarf.

Akram's Ideas: A Vintage 50’s Dress Made for My Sister Z
Miss Z even with her matching hair scarf

While there were some fitting issues and I was a little short on the fabric for the skirt, overall this was an easy dress to put together.

We both loved the vintage look and best of all it counts towards my #VintagePledge, which is a big plus.

For full details about making this dress  be sure to see my full blog post at http://akramsideas.com/a-vintage-50s-dress-made-for-my-sister-z/

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Dresses | Vintage Sewing

Show your Patriotism with a July Sew-Along

By on May 11, 2017
Join the #4thofJulyProudDressProject and/or #FlagsOfTheWorldDressProject

With the success of the #EasterSringDress2017 sew-along (see the roundup here) I’ve teamed up again with some amazing seamstress to bring you the next big sew-along.

Renta from Running In Style contacted me, along with  Judith of Judith Dee’s World and Bianca of Vintage on Tap, to team up and host two sew-alongs in one.

Announcing the #4thofJulyProudDressProject and the #FlagsOfTheWorldDressProject 

The idea behind both is to show your patriotism and make a dress or outfit that represents your country or nationality with the big reveal the week of 4th of July.

Vintage Ideas

While the sew-along doesn’t stipulate any specific pattern or style, I’d love to see some vintage style dresses in the big round-up.

4th of July Dress from early 1900's
4th of July Dress from early 1900’s

A quick search on Pinterest for 4th of July fashion will yield lots of ideas from early nineteenth century gowns to 1950’s novelty dresses.

Matching Mother and Daughters 4th of July 50's dresses
Matching Mother and Daughters 4th of July 50’s dresses

Of course red, white and blue also often bring a slew of nautical inspired outfits as well. I’m not sure why, but I love the idea of a nautical dress for 4th of July.

Nautical 4th of July dress 1900
Nautical 4th of July dress 1900

Join the Fun

If you plan to join in the fun post your creations between Saturday, July 1 thru Friday, July 7th  on Youtube, blog or Instagram using the hashtag #4thofJulyProudDressProject and/or #FlagsOfTheWorldDressProject 

1930's actress Marion Shilling in her firework stockings
1930’s actress Marion Shilling in her firework stockings

For full details on the sew-along and to sign up be sure to see my full blog post at: http://wp.me/p3yKY3-2Cv 

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1950s | Dresses

Vogue 1397 Easter Spring Dress 2017

By on April 17, 2017
Akram's Ideas: The Easter Spring Dress 2017 Big Reveal in Blue

I hope you all have had a lovely Easter holiday this past weekend.

While there were some early morning storms by afternoon the weather had warmed up enough to debut my #EasterSpringDress2017.

I had the pleasure of co-hosting the #EasterSpringDress2017 sewalong with Judith of Judith Dee’s World  , which encouraged participants to sew a new dress or outfit for Easter / Spring.

Tracy Reese Vogue 1397

For my own project, I wanted a very classic 50’s style Easter dress.  I decided to make Tracy Reese Vogue 1397, while a modern pattern I felt had that classic look I was going for.

For the fabric I had my followers choose between a bold pink rose print and a monochromatic blue rose print. Blue was chosen as the overall favorite, which I’m happy with since I don’t usually make a lot of blue dresses.

Akram's Ideas : #EasterSpringDress2017 Sewalong
I couldn’t decided between blue or pink

The project seemed real straight forward, though I found the low back neckline caused a lot of drooping issues. I ended up making 4 different muslins of the bodice top and am still not 100% happy with the final results of how the bodice sets.

Despite the issues with the bodice, the overall look of the dress is lovely.

Akram's Ideas: The Easter Spring Dress 2017 Big Reveal in Blue
Overall I’m pretty happy with this dress.

As I said earlier I really like the vintage inspired look of this dress, even more so when I paired it with vintage accessories.

While it may not be my best make the end result is exactly the look I was going for.

Akram's Ideas: The Easter Spring Dress 2017 Big Reveal in Blue
Vintage accessories make this dress

Check out my Youtube video about this make ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4p8vqO64h-U) or read more about my process for making my Easter Spring Dress 2017 check out my blog Akram’s Ideas (http://akramsideas.com/easter-spring-dress-2017-reveal/)

Did you make a dress for the #EasterSpringDress2017 how did it turn out?

 

 

 

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1960s

Whiter shade of pale

By on March 24, 2017

Hello!  Some time ago I bought 2 remnant pieces of beautiful grosgrains: an apple green rayon and a creamy-white cotton one. I never worked with grosgrain except for the ribbons and I was surprised to find how delicate, soft and drapey it is. The rayon grosgrain has more body and is a bit firmer; the cotton is light and smooth; both have a wonderful, subtle sheen to them, which catches the light beautifully. The only problem is that they fray like crazy: be sure to leave a considerable seam allowances and to properly secure them if sewing with grosgrain fabrics (I used a dense zig-zag stitch).

 

I used the Simplicity 8049 1960s reproduction pattern. I was attracted to the three-armhole dress idea and I liked the purity of its lines. The construction was pretty straightforward; surprisingly enough, the front is cut on straight grain so the “cowl” is created by using pleats. I decided to line the whole dress; this cleaned up the mess inside and helped to give the dress a little bit more body and less transparency. The lining pieces were created using main pattern pieces, I hand-stitched them in place all around the facings, the side seam and the hem.

The cat always thinks he’s so creative with his hiding spots

I made some personal touches to the project like adding a lining cover to the snaps or making a separate belt, which fastens with 3 hooks-and eyes and a snap. For more details and photos, I invite you to visit my blog, rvdzik.blogspot.com. Have a great weekend!

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