1960s | Blouses | Shirts | Skirts

Gathered Skirt Paired with Simplicity 1364

By on July 21, 2016

In an earlier post I mentioned how much I love Simplicity 1364 blouse pattern. I loved it so much I wanted to make more versions of this blouse.

While searching my stash I found I had a lovely butterfly print fabric and decided to use it for another blouse.

Akram's Ideas : Simplicity 1364 & Gathered Skirt
I love this cheerful butterfly print

I really liked how the piping turned out on my shift dress I decided to add piping to this blouse.

After making the blouse I found that I had enough fabric left over that I could make a matching skirt.

I decided to make a simple gathered skirt. To give the set a more dress like appearance I aded piping to the skirt waistband.

Akram's Ideas : Simplicity 1364 & Gathered Skirt
I can wear it as a dress or as sperates

While the print might be a bit childish I really love the fun look of this this combo. I also love that at first glance it looks like a dress, but has the versatility of a two piece.

To read more about my process for making this set check out my blog Akram’s Ideas (http://akramsideas.com/butterfly-dress-purple-piping/)

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1960s | Dresses

Simplicity 1609 Classic Shift with Piping

By on July 19, 2016

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 (http://akramsideas.com/60s-shift-dress-simplicity-1609/ )

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1950s | Dresses

Capper’s Weekly (1950’s) 2875 Western dress

By on September 14, 2015

Capper’s Weekly (an agricultural magazine) 2875, 1950’s. I was outbid on this ages ago but then stumbled across another copy relatively recently. The copy I have is a vintage 10 (bust 28) and I’m . . . not. I know that two sizes is considered to be the maximum safe grade, but when you can’t just pop out and get another copy in your size, what do you do? You suck it up, grade three sizes, and make a lot of test muslins.

Cappers 00 dress

(Actually, I think there is a bust 34 for sale on Amazon, but I have enough duplicates, and I was going to have to personalize the fit, anyway.)

I really, really, wanted to wear this to a concert on Friday night so I graded and sewed like crazy all Labor Day weekend, most of the evenings last week, and all day Friday (which I had off from work). I didn’t quite make it and ended up pinning myself into it, but it was dark and nobody was going to notice that I didn’t have buttons.

The fabric is green plaid homespun with, yes, gold lamé running through it.  It had to be a cowgirl dress.  I got 1 yard + 3 yards, which was all my Joann’s had, and never did find any more. That’s a lot of fabric but not for a 1950’s dress so I had to make it count.  I didn’t trust snaps to hold a whole dress closed so I went with white pearl buttons instead:

cappers 2875 02 fabric

I cut the yoke on the bias and made self piping to play up the Western-shirt look. The lamé only runs in one direction so I had to piece it.

cappers 05 bodice back

Since homespun is comfortable but kind of flabby, I went overkill and lined the whole thing (this meant I had to alter the pattern pieces into a lining that was in single pieces, front and back, to avoid the bulk of the yoke seams and gathering). The bodice is lined in green sheeting scrap and the skirt in muslin. It’s heavy but I sort of like the feel and body of it.

Cappers 2875 lining

I finished the armscyes using the 19th-century neckline method of whipstitching the piping seam allowance to the lining. Worked great.

cappers 06 armscye

I chickened out on grading the skirt and used a “pattern” I’ve been messing with in small scale, for a gathered quarter-circle skirt. Basically between a circle skirt and a dirndl–lots of sweep but more forgiving to fit around the waist than a circle, but less bulk than a dirndl. It worked beautifully, although it took every inch of three yards, and I wish I had had enough to make it an inch or so longer.

I LOVE this dress. The only issue is that it still has a bit of “side boob” going on–it’s poochy around the front dart. Not along the dart, though; it’s not a dart issue. I made a copy of the bodice front last night, slashed it diagonally from center-front-waist to side-armscye, then perpendicularly from that slash to side-waist, and rotated the quadrants inward a bit.

Cappers 01 comparison edit 650

That left the waist, side, and front measurements the same but took up some slack in the side front (around my ribs, basically) and made the dart shorter and shallower.

Cappers 02 comparison edit

I made a really ratty test of it last night and I think it’s what I want. It’s not meant to be tightly fitted but it’s less baggy without spoiling the softness of the gathers into the yoke.

Cappers 03 bodice refit

(Link in comments to the Flickr set, which has pictures of what I did to fix the bodice piece.)

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Modern Patterns | Skirts

Pink Piping Pin-Up Pencil Skirt!

By on August 21, 2013

p-p-p-p-p… I’m all a stutter now!

😀

I wasn’t originally going to post this creation on We Sew Retro… I wasn’t sure if it was retro enough, however after posting it on my blog and recieving so many wonderful comments stating how vintage-esque and pin-up the skirt looks I thought, why not! So here you have it, my pink piping pin-up pencil skirt 😀

So this skirt is made using the Lucinda Skirt pattern from indie pattern designer Parnuuna from Be My Goth.

What is great about this particular pattern is that, although Parnnuna’s style is very alternative, hence the title of her blog,  which isn’t my particular style, there are so many opportunities and ways to adapt this particular pattern to make it your own. Simply through a change of fabric this skirt quickly goes from alternative to vintage – almost pin-up some would say!

Using this pattern introduced me to the use of piping. I had dabbled with it before but this was the first time when I made it from scratch myself , and now I am addicted to the stuff. And it is so easy to do, I am looking to get a tutorial together soon 😀

There are two key features to this skirt. The first is the corset-style waist band. It is made up of several pieces and can be pieced together either using piping or without. The piping helps to emphasise the effect of the paneling.

The second feature this the adorable pleated pockets. Again I think the use of piping really adds to the cuteness of these pockets. The skirt works equally well both with and without the pockets, They are completely optional.

I chose to make my version in a grey suiting material with contrasting coral pink piping. Rather than line the skirt I used bias tape to seal the seams on the inside of the skirt and it looks really nifty (I forgot to take a photo, sorry)

I think that the Lucinda skirt made in a suiting material makes it perfect for work, don’t you think?!

It is such a versatile pattern that I know I am going to get a LOT of use out of.  I might even try a version without the pockets.

Check out my blog post for more information on this pattern HERE

I would love to get a second opinion on what types of fabric I could use to make this truly vintage looking?

What do you think? Any suggestions are welcomed.

Happy Sewing

oXo

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1960s | Dresses | Vintage Sewing

Lampoon Dress

By on April 19, 2012

I was recently asked to participate in a Simplicity Blog Hop, and chose 1913 as my first dress to stitch up and blog about. After a few false starts, from being unable to find my desired fabric to receiving the list of other participants and trying to predict their tastes (nobody wants to show up to the prom with the same dress!), I finally settled on this chambray. I recently confiscated it from my mom’s stash, along with the red bias tape, the turquoise metal zip (hand-picked), and the Yale blue lace hem tape (also hand-stitched). The only non-vintage item in this dress is the thread and hook (I’m going to re-work the thread bar, as it’s too large). I like to call the Project Runway line “choose your own adventure” patterns, because they include lots of variations & details you can throw at ’em. In the end, I simply went with the collar and added piping.

You can read more about my adventures in fitting this dress over on my blog. Lampoon, it was. Let’s just say that I think I’ve finally learned how to properly fit my curvy back. And to get armholes up where I prefer them to be. The first version was almost rude.

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