Vintage Sewing

February 9, 2009

New Around Here…

Hi, I’ve been enjoying reading this inspirational blog for a while and figured joining would help me tackle my immense, mainly vintage, fabric stash and spur me into completing projects to post.

I studied Fashion at college and have been making my own stuff for years, either using my own patterns (if they turn out alright) or vintage ones. I’m a bit of an era-slut and am rarely faithful to any one style – I love flattering crepe dresses of the 40s, full skirted lovelies from the 50’s, cute A-line minis and peter pan collars from the 60s and love loud prints and colourful fabrics.… I’m a vintage and thrifting addict with a particular fetish for dresses and wear mainly vintage or second hand clothes.

My main problem is getting a garment finished! I tend to start something and either become frustrated by things going wrong, or disappointed at the way it’s turning out… so it ends up being thrown in the ever-growing pile of Dress Disasters. So… my intention is to post here a COMPLETED project at least once a month!

Here are a few projects I have done recently:

A Cheongsam made with thrifted 1960s fabric using a pattern I draped on the stand (a replica ‘me’ made with modrock bandages!)

A dress made from thrifted 1950’s fabric using my own simple pattern

And, most recently, using this Burda Magazine 1969 pattern

I made this sleeveless version using thrifted sari fabric that I got for a £1!

The pattern was fairly straightforward – though the instructions are minimal with Burda Magazine patterns and they give no construction advice whatsoever – and the gathered skirt gave me real problems, I can never get them even and then they tend to hang in funny folds, grrrr. Still, overall it’s wearable and I’m fairly pleased with it, I may even make one with sleeves.

Thanks everyone!


  1. Lovely dresses! The silhouette of the first oriental inspired one is fantastic. The green one is lovely, too (green is my favorite color!).

  2. When you gather, are you running two rows of basting stitching (parallel to each other)? My mom always told me to do that, and I refused for so long (out of sheer laziness). When I relented and started doing it, though, I noticed a marked difference in my gathering. It’s much easier and comes out much more evenly.

    Of course, if you’re already doing that, I have no other suggestions, LOL.

    That said, I think your dresses look fabulous as they are!

  3. Aw thanks everyone for your lovely comments!

    The oriental blue dress was my first attempt at draping a pattern directly on my dummy ‘me’ and I was amazed at how easy it was and recommend people trying it, the fit was perfect 🙂

    Amanda#1: Um, no I didn’t do two rows of stitching before gathering, I’m really lazy when sewing and often take short cuts, though I have done that once before and it did indeed work far better (though it’s still a pain to get it even and professional looking), so maybe next time I will, thank you for your advice!

  4. Amanda #1- When you put in two rows of gathering stitches do you pull them at the same time or do you pull one thread to gather and then pull the other one? I’ve never seen any instructions about this and wonder if it matters.

  5. I really love all your dresses. Variety is the spice of life and your dresses are definitely a variety of style and very nice!

  6. Thanks froginthepond, livebird and Linda!

    WindingWays: When I have tried the 2 rows of stitching to gather in the past, then I have gathered both at the same time as that’s what it said in my sewing book. I doubt it matters either way though!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.