1920s | Accessories | Capes | Downton Abbey Inspired | Vintage Sewing

Make a 1920’s Inspired Shrug for added Glamour

By on June 29, 2017

 

My friend Jonathan invited me to his 30th birthday party.  He wanted to leave his OWN roaring 20’s in style and asked everyone to come dressed up for the occasion.  What a great opportunity to play dress up and put on a made-by-me gown from my favorite era!

Original dress and wrap

Yay!  I had everything – Dress, shoes, stockings, gloves, hand bag and wrap.  But the truth is, I didn’t really want to wear a wrap.  I wanted something a little more glamorous. So why not turn my metallic gold organza wrap into something more special?  I could throw it together in a couple of days, right?  So I did.  It’s not 100% accurate to the era and time, but I think it evokes the glamour of the era (and my inspiration photo – see below) and went perfectly with my dress already (see this post for more info about the dress)

The Finished Look!
My Vintage Inspiration

Here is the finished look.  I am happy with the way it turned out.  It was created from a metallic organza wrap that I owned already, and a vintage white fox collar that was purchased online. The stitching was done entirely by hand and the collar is removable.

If you are interested in how I created the Shrug, visit my blog post about making it.

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1960s

The jade

By on January 6, 2017

Hello!
The first post of 2017 is actually a past make. I had made this dress in October 2015 and it was my first “big” project: first time with silk, first time with evening clothes, first time with two fabrics treated as one, finally-first time with overcasting by hand all the seam allowances.

The pattern is Vogue 5456 from 1961 and the main fabric is a silk dupioni in a shade of jade green.
It is fully backed with a medium-weight cotton canvas in dark green, to give the dress more body, to reduce the crazy-wrinkling properties of dupioni (seriously, it crinkles from even looking at it) and to have something to hand sew to without marking the outside fabric. Dupioni is a wonderful silk to start sewing with-it’s stable, doesn’t shift and takes the corrections gracefully.

Too see the finishing details and read more, I invite you to my blog, rvdzik.blogspot.com. Thank you for visiting! 🙂

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1930s | Blouses | Skirts | Vintage Sewing

1930s Bishop Sleeve Blouse & Pocket Detail Skirt

By on December 8, 2016

1930s blouse and skirt

Do you ever have an idea in your mind that never really pans out when it comes to your sewing? Yep, that’s exactly what happened here. Both the blouse and skirt were going to be very different to how they actually turned out, mainly due to not having quite enough fabric for either of them!

The white silk with navy polka dots is actually a vintage fabric I picked up at a flea market. It was very narrow and as a result, the originally planned pattern of McCalls – 7053, from their Archive Collection, just didn’t fit. So after abandoning this idea, I decided to use the top half of this beautiful original 1930s dress pattern instead. It’s been sat in my collection for a while totally unused, but boy am I glad I used it this time.

Vintage 1930s Buttons

It worked out beautifully in this fabric, despite having to redo the front yoke many, many times. The issue was that it needed to be lined to give it some stability and the join at the bottom, where the button placket areas overlap, was incredibly fiddly. After many attempts, both on the machine and by hand, I finally got it to sit right. However, after all that stress I gave up on trying to do buttonholes, so just sewed the buttons in place.

1930s sleeve detail

Instead of finishing the sleeves with a mid-forearm cuff as shown in the pattern, I decided to add a long cuff right down to the wrist. I absolutely love this style of bishop sleeve, it’s so classically 1930s, and of course keeps your forearms warm! I finished it off with four buttons and rouleau loops to allow enough room to get my hand in and out.

The fabric itself, unfortunately, has weakened during the pre-wash and making up stages. As a result, I’ve decided to only wear it on special occasions and to try and find another white and navy polka dot fabric for a more wearable version. I think it would work well in a crepe or a soft cotton lawn.

1930s blouse yoke detail

The skirt was drafted from another original 1930s pattern, which I’ve used multiple times as it’s such a simple design so can be changed to just about any style. The fabric is a deep mustard linen, which I bought from My Fabrics and a dream to work with. It’s quite a heavy weight linen so can be used for both summer and winter.

The design itself was taken from an original 1930s skirt I own but haven’t yet worn. I love the little pockets on it, so decided to replicate them here with a slightly different style button tab. They worked out quite well I think and give such a lovely interest to the front of the skirt, along with the deep single kick pleat on the centre front.

If you want to read more about it, and see the gorgeous original 1930s navy suede shoes I wore with it, just pop on over to my blog.

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1920s | Blouses | Downton Abbey Inspired | Giveaway | Skirts | Vintage Sewing

1920s Silk Blouse and Pleated Skirt

By on March 11, 2016

After admiring everyone else’s achievements last year for A Stitching Odyssey’s Vintage Pledge I decided that this year I was going to join in. My own pledge was to challenge and push myself with my sewing. I’ve just finished my first outfit for the pledge, a 1920s silk blouse and pleated skirt. I created the pattern for the blouse by tracing around a simple silk top I already had and then making my own adjustments. The pattern for the skirt was McCall’s M7022 pleated skirt which I lengthened to a more suitable 1920s style.

1920s blouse, skirt and cloche hat

I used a beautiful Pre-Raphaelite inspired green and purple floral silk for the blouse which I bought from the fabulous ClothSpot and this was my first challenge. I’d never worked with silk before so was really, really nervous about starting it and I put it off for about four months. The Vintage Pledge was just what I needed to force myself to be brave and just get on with it. As it turned out there was nothing to worry about!

Pre-Raphaelite inspired silk fabric

I added vintage, probably early 20th Century, jet buttons to both the front of the blouse and at the side to close the band around the bottom.

1920s blouse, skirt and cloche hat

The skirt is in a black cotton twill that I dug out from my stash. I’m not overly happy with it, mainly because the fabric is all wrong for the style of skirt, it’s way too stiff. I’m not sure if I’ll try and adjust it or just make a different one.

If you would like to read more about how the whole outfit and see more photos feel free to pop over to my blog. And while you’re there why not check out my latest post where I’m running a giveaway of £40 to spend on fabrics at ClothSpot. (Giveaway ends midnight 20th March 2016)

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1950s | Vintage Sewing

Tree Gown in Action

By on September 20, 2014

Back in the Spring I shared my reproduction of Charles James’ Tree Gown made for the 2014 Toronto Garrison Ball. The ball was at the end of March, but I’ve only just now got photos of the gown – and one I also made for a friend! – in action up on my blog. Just a little bit of a delay there ;oP

I thought I’d share for those who may be interested in seeing what the dress looks like on an actual person rather than my dressform, and get a sense of how it moves – though I do wish I’d gotten a bit of video of its swish.

IMG_2633

Hop on over to my blog to see (lots) more photos, from lots more angles, and my friend’s dress too!

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1950s | Dresses | Vintage Sewing

A 1950’s Grad Dress from Vogue S-4727

By on July 18, 2014

For my high school graduation, I made my dress from Vogue S-4727, a vintage pattern from 1956. It may look familiar – I posted my wearable muslin for this dress here back in March!

I used turquoise silk dupioni, which wasn’t as challenging to sew with as I expected! The pattern itself was far more challenging than working with the fabric was. I underlined parts of it with silk organza to reinforce the seams, and it had underarm gussets and a very awkward zipper insertion. I spent a lot of time hand basting!

I ended up putting in an invisible zipper, which I would usually avoid, but the lapped one on my wearable muslin didn’t look very good because of the way the zipper curves into the godet. Because I don’t trust invisible zippers, I put in a waist stay to support it. I hemmed the skirt by hand with horsehair braid, which I love!  I wore it with two crinolines (a bigger, itchier one with a subtler, softer one underneath), both of which were vintage from my aunt. She wore one of them to her high school graduation in 1960!

My shoes are vintage that I bought at a thrift store. I love them! They’re all leather, made in Italy, and have a really gorgeous cutout detail on them. I borrowed the purse from my mom, and the pearl earrings and necklace once belonged to my grandma. I did my own makeup, although I didn’t do much. I did a bit of a cat-eye and wore some super subtle false eyelashes and my favourite lipstick.

My hairdresser did my hair and nails – hair is one thing that I can’t do myself! I loved my hairdo, so it was worth it to get it done (although it was quite a challenge to get my dress over my head without wrecking it!).

It was such a fun day, and I was so happy with my dress! For more construction details and photos, check out my blog post!

If you want to read about other steps in sewing this dress, I wrote posts on choosing a pattern, my two muslins, and my wearable muslin.

Thanks for reading!

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