Vintage Sewing

Simplicity 3673

October 9, 2009

I made this popular reprinted Simplicity pattern. Like many other people, I loved the empire waistline, the slash/boat neck and the waist darts. And like many other people, I was disappointed with my finished dress because it was just so much bigger than I expected. I know it’s a jumper/pinafore and supposed to have ease, but the envelope lists cotton as a recommended fabric, implying that it could be made up as a light-weight summer dress – which is what I tried to do, using a gorgeous vintage printed cotton that I think was originally meant to be sheeting. I made the size 8, which is right for my measurements, and the result is ok, certainly wearable, but not quite what I wanted. See how in the last picture the excess fabric is standing up off my hips. If I spend time making twelve darts, I would like the fabric to be a lot closer to my body than that! I might make this dress again, making the smaller size on the skirt and grading between the 6 and 8 on the back and front bodice, though making sure not to make the armholes any smaller!

  1. It looks very cute – it seems nicely fitted through the waist.

    12 darts! That's dedication! Still, the result looks gorgeous and you can hardly notice the extra fullness at the hip – it just looks like a very full skirt.

  2. Hi Hanna,

    In the 50s & 60s a full skirt like this would have had a petticoat (full very ruffled slip) worn underneath. That would take care of the fullness.

    I think your dress is darling. Great job.


  3. Wow – I was thinking about a crinoline, but now that I've seen what a difference it made to isaspacey's dress I'll bring it to the top of my to-do list! Thanks for the tip!

  4. i agree with the armhole thing. I made that same view, and cinched up the back because it was too big. Now i wear it half unzipped with a sweater on top because it feels like my arms are being cut off! live and learn….

  5. I just purchased this pattern and am going to try it in a wool for fall. Thanks for the advice with the sizing! I now remember to put my girdle on WHILE I am pinning it to myself to make sure it is 'snug' enough.

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