Vintage Sewing

Two Vintage Floral Frocks for Summer! :)

By on June 22, 2014

Hi, Ladies!

Hope your spring has been filled with lovely sewing projects!  I am excited to share photos of two vintage dresses I sewed, both made from out-of-print vintage designs.  I’ll share the 1950s dress first, which I just recently had photographed at the beach.

This one was made from an original 1956 Vogue design that I purchased at a hefty price a few years back, and it has some very unique details for a 1950s dress.  There are diagonal tucks/darts in the upper bodice, and the pattern actually calls for a ribbon bow to stream down the front of the dress.   It also features a square neckline and working buttons down the front, although the main opening comes by way of a side zipper.

Believe it or not, I was actually wearing my largest crinoline petticoat underneath, but the strong winds at the beach (and the fact that this was a heavier twill fabric) made the skirt kind of “flop” instead of standing out.  Oh well! 😉

There are LOTS more pictures and a full pattern review of the design I used on this blog post.   Old Vogue patterns are really the best!


Then there’s this dainty spring frock that I sewed using a Hollywood Pattern – my favorite vintage pattern brand hands down!

I wore this dress for Easter, and while the lighting doesn’t show quite how pink this voile fabric really is, at least you can tell in the photo below.

This pattern was a breeze to use, but I really love the flattering cut shown on the cover!  A peasant style bodice, gathered skirt, and fitted, curved waistband panel make it so feminine.  The fabric is a cotton voile, lined with blush pink China silk lining.  It closes with a side zipper and is rather fitted, but I’ll definitely be using this pattern again.  You can see MANY more pictures and my pattern review on my blog post about it.

Happy sewing!

Katrina @ Edelweiss Patterns

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A Very Vintage Valentine Dress

By on February 9, 2014

Hello, Ladies!

It seems so long since I’ve posted here!  I temporarily switched gears from vintage attire to historical costuming when I had to sew half a dozen costumes to wear to the Jane Austen Festival last fall.  (I have tons of Elizabeth Bennet pictures on the blog!)  But once I returned from my costuming trip to England I was able to jump back onto the vintage bandwagon, so to speak, and this is the first dress I sewed after I came back.

I LOVE Hollywood Patterns, and this one from my collection just begged to be made into a burgundy dress.  I used a crepe or faille material, and decorated the bodice with chocolate brown ribbon bows.  The pattern was super easy to work with, though it *is* a big fitted even for my liking.

The pattern is quite versatile with either straight or puffed sleeves, and a floor length or below the knee skirt.  I LOVE the flattering fit, and you just can’t go wrong with a sweetheart neckline and a wide cummerbund inset.

There are many more pictures and a full pattern review on my blog, for those who wish to read more.

Hope you all are having a wonderful winter, and happy sewing!

Katrina @ Edelweiss Patterns

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Vintage Sewing

In the Good Old Summertime….

By on June 30, 2013

Hello, Ladies!

I love making dresses for all times of the year, but there’s nothing quite as marvelous as sewing a dress for summer.  Summer seems to have been made for sundresses and picnics, and when you can sew your own dresses the possibilities are really endless as to what styles of summer frocks you can wear!

I was looking down, not blinking in this photo. 🙂

This number was made from a vintage Butterick design which is quite rare – at the moment I can’t find even one copy of it for sale online!  The style is so cute with the circular skirt and bodice tucks, Peter Pan collar and curved empire waist seam.

Eyelet seemed the logical fabric to use, so I chose ivory as it can be accessorized with so many summery colors.  The dress closes with a side zipper, and there are functioning buttons from the neck down to the empire waist seam.

To see lots more pictures, you can visit my blog post about this frock. 🙂

Happy sewing!

Katrina ~ Edelweiss Patterns

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Jackie Would Be Proud…

By on April 21, 2013

Hello, Ladies!

My sewing adventures have recently taken me to Washington, D.C. where I studied (amongst other things) the First Ladies’ gown collection and other gorgeous costume exhibits.  But my favorite part of the whole trip, was dressing up like Jackie!  There is nothing I love better than sewing a reproduction of a famous outfit, so as soon as I found out I would be visiting our nation’s capitol I immediately knew I had to recreate a First Lady’s outfit.

Since most famous gowns were much too large to transport in a regular suitcase, I decided on a 1960s suit which was worn by Mrs. Kennedy on a number of occasions, most famously on the day of her husband’s assasination.  It is the most famous outfit ever worn by a President’s wife, and there’s quite a lot of information online about its origins.

Well, as you’ve probably guessed, I was able to get pictures taken at the actual White House itself!  Squeal!!  I was absolutely elated to visit it right at the last minute!  You can read the whole story on my blog, along with lots more pictures.  The hat was so easy to whip up, and it didn’t even take a pattern to create.

Auf wiedersehen!

Katrina @ Edelweiss Patterns

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I Made the New “Gertie” Dress!

By on February 24, 2013

Hello, Ladies!

I’m sure you were all as thrilled as I was when Butterick released their early summer collection last Wednesday – mainly because of the pattern shown below!  Isn’t is so exciting that there’s finally a repro pattern with a shelf bust design?  I had been waiting for something like this for years.

Well, as you can probably imagine, I called the Butterick orderline at 7:00 am the next morning and had them ship it Express mail to my house!  It was not supposed to show up until Monday, but it arrived on Saturday instead!  So all day Saturday was spent cutting out the pattern and fabric, then constructing this really couture style dress.  The only I wanted to change was the shelf bust – it was quite a bit lower than how I like to wear my dresses, but there was another reason, too!  When you go to all that work to get the bias cut pleats just right, shouldn’t people see a little bit more of the pleating?  So I doubled the height of the bust pieces, and I’m really thrilled with the way it turned out!  There are tons of 1950s patterns and dresses that feature a more crossover version of the shelf bust, so this version I made is completely authentic.

I also added teeny tiny cap sleeves made from a white embroidered organza I had on hand.  It’s a good thing I keep a serious stash of fabric and trims!  The fabric itself is a 100% cotton sateen, and it has a lovely crisp feel.

The skirt was a breeze to construct, though I wish I’d had my crinoline to wear with it.  It’s not that I don’t own a crinoline petticoat, it’s just that the petticoat is currently at a certain sewing magazine’s headquarters being photographed for an upcoming issue….  Let’s just say you will be seeing it sometime this summer in a magazine we all know and love. 🙂

The dress itself is excellently thought out – I loved the couture details such as boning in the bodice, and it fits very firmly yet without being too tight.  I did do quite a bit of fitting to get it just right, but it was well worth the extra effort!

You can read all about this project plus my pattern review here on my blog!  I was so thrilled to get this version up and blogged about just three days after the design was released, and I hope it inspires lots of other ladies to use the pattern, too!

Happy sewing,

Katrina @ Edelweiss Patterns

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1940s | Vintage Sewing

A Dress for Fireside Chats…

By on December 14, 2012

Hello, Folks!

Usually December is the busiest month of the year for lots of reasons.  For me, it can often also be my busiest month of sewing!  It’s not that I put stuff off until the last minute, it’s just that I often come up with all these exciting projects which simply cannot wait until next Christmas!

So between sewing lots of dresses, (or at least having them all photographed), I’ve been spending nearly every spare minute in photo editing, blogging, or just plain sewing! 🙂  This latest dress that I made is a dark green polyester faille which reminds me very much of something inspired by military wear.  I know that in the 40s women’s fashions were often inspired by men’s military uniforms, so I think it’s fitting that this dress is made of an olive green fabric and has a simple gold button at the neckline.

It is made from this pattern which was made famous by Casey’s sew-along, and while I didn’t actually “sew along” with her instructions I did enjoy seeing all her lovely versions of it!  For my rendition of the dress I used incredibly stiff interfacing for the bodice mid-section panel, and I did shorten the upper bodice so it didn’t “sag” like some versions I’ve seen.

I think airplanes make one of the neatest backgrounds for vintage dress pictures, and you can read more about this project and photo shoot on my blog.  By the way, I have lots more dresses waiting in the wings to be shared between now and Christmas, so you might want to follow the “Christmas dress parade” on my blog since I have some exciting Victorian projects coming up. 🙂

Happy sewing!

Katrina @ Edelweiss Patterns

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1950s | Skirts | Vintage Sewing

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

By on December 2, 2012

Hello, Ladies!

This Christmastime I am posting a vintage holiday sewing project on my blog each week, and since I started with a green velvet number in November I think I’ll have a pretty wide selection of Christmas frocks online by the end of December!  I have something very exciting planned for New Years Eve, too, but for now I’ll show you one of my Christmasy outfits!  (And I do celebrate Hannukah, too, so I might have to squeeze something blue or silver in the mix. 🙂 )

This outfit is inspired by Vera Ellen’s fashion style (think Judy from White Christmas!).  I love her full skirts, tight belts, and fitted tops that had so much detail to them!  So I made a circle skirt from grey double knit for starters.  I looooove this skirt!  The fabric is so thick that it keeps my legs warm even in the coldest weather (that is, as long as I wear grey tights with them).

But the blouse is really my favorite part of the outfit!  I made it from this pattern by Mrs. Depew Vintage, and even though I didn’t make a mock-up (which I really should have done), I’m still quite happy with how it turned out.  The pattern has lots of intricate ruched pieces that all fit together to make a top that looks something like the upper half of an evening gown with a bolero over it.  I used a drapy knit material with sparkle in it, and I’m sure it will be a staple in my wardrobe for many Decembers to come.  (I have an actual review of the pattern here if you want to know more about it.)

There are many more photos over on my blog for those who care to see, and I hope you all have as much fun sewing holiday outfits as I have been having!

Happy sewing,

Katrina ~ Edelweiss Patterns

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