Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Dress #32 -- Wearing History 4001 (1940s Sailor Girl Skirt)

Hola. This was a quick project I wanted to whip up before I decide on a bigger one:

Funny story about this pattern -- I've had it for YEARS (when it first came out I bought it) and I never realized it was a skirt, too. It only says it right there. DOH! I thought the picture was long, weird shorts..lol. Oh, I am so unobservant! Anyway, I finished the skirt in two days, but it did have some issues. Now, I bought this when it FIRST came out so I don't know if this issue has been corrected in newer versions, but the waistband did not match up with the skirt pieces. I cut out size 38 for all pieces! It was about 3-4 inches too short -- it seemed like the overlap in the front wasn't accounted for. Since I don't measure and I trust patterns too much, I found out when I was sewing it on! To fix it I cut the back of the waistband and added the extra 4 inches on material. I didn't want to rip out the entire waistband when a small panel of fabric in the back is just fine.

I also didn't have 10 buttons, only 8! The two on the bottom left are slightly larger but I loosely sewed them on as "placeholders" because I will want to wear this skirt out soon and I won't be making it to Jo-ann's for another week or so. So, slightly off placeholders it is. Doubt anyone will notice!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Dress #31 -- Vintage Vogue 9000 (1951 Reproduction)

And there's my vanity show for today. As for the pattern, I loved working on it. It was a little bit more involved than what I am used to, but it's good to expand your skills. There isn't a single Ooopsie hidden inside and I took my time making the pointed cuffs and hand sewing the collar (which the old me would have machine sewn and "hidden"!) No changes to the pattern were made and I fit perfectly into a size 14 right out of the package. I'm also rocking my new crinoline. I didn't realize how much of a difference it made.

With this project I learned to take my time because it pays off in the end. I am very pleased with this dress.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Fashion Things I Don't Like

I've sewn my fair share of things to know what works on me and what doesn't. These are those fashion details I either look really bad in, or I just don't find them aesthetically pleasing. Let's start...

1920s drop-waist dresses. Not flattering on big boobs and hips, although I do have a few patterns I want to make up. This includes the "One Hour Dress" whenever I can find fabric for it.

Extreme gathering, pleating, and draping from 1936. Nothing about this would flatter me. I just feel like there is too much going on and it will always make me think of curtains. '36 was a transitional year for fashion. The long, slim silhouette was finally changing up a bit. By '37 the a-line skirt and puff sleeve look came in.

These sleeves. Not even sure what they are called. Kimono? I think they are ugly. Not only that, they make my bust look huge and my arms look fat! I usually think any pattern with these sleeves is ugly so I don't buy them, but I do have 2 or 3 lurking in my collection somewhere.... Longer kimono sleeves, though, I can work with :)

This neckline. Boat neck? Always feels like it's never in place and usually ends up either stabbing my throat or gaping wide open. And the super-highness never looks good on my bust!

Early 60s fashion. I'm not a huge fan of 1958-1964ish fashion. I just find it uninteresting. I don't like the shorter full skirts, the boxy cuts, and the collarless bodices of this time period. To me, this is also a transitional period; the full 50s circle skirt was falling out of vogue and something new needed to break (the mini in '65!) So, I don't sew much from this era.

1970s "Pants Outfit" long tunic/pants combo. I hate this look. It looks like too much is going on (are you a mini-dress or a maternity top?) I have a pattern for this outfit, but there is also an option to make a dress -- which is why I bought it!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Dress #30 -- Butterick 3138 (ca. 1974)

I didn't get any photos of me wearing this so the dress form will have to do.

TOTALLY a cute 70s-does-30s number! Even more so with my version! The picture on the envelope is kinda hippie-ish. Mine just looks like a short 1937 house dress! I followed the directions and pattern exactly -- even the pockets and buttons, which I usually free-hand. The result was perfection! I should follow the pattern more often! Nothing about the pattern was too difficult and it's good for advanced beginner/low intermediate (me) sewers.

And let's talk about BUTTERICK not putting copyrights on their patterns well into the 80s. Obviously, we can all see this is a 1970s pattern. The blonde on the envelope has the same haircut as an actress on a 1973 episode of The Brady Bunch I saw the other day so there's a clue. Another is my handy-dandy Sears pages. It seems like that cut and collar is on every other page of the 1974 catalog, so I'm dating this pattern to ca. 1974. Here's the "proof":

All pages with dresses very similar to Butterick 3138! And all so CUTE!!

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Dress #29 -- Hollywood 1391 (1937)

St. Anne really gave me her blessing with this one!

And for fun, a birdie in the sky!!!

My, oh, my did I love this pattern! Someone put it up for sale on a FB group and I was at the right place and the right time. I snatched this baby up as soon as it was posted! The envelope art is good enough, but I seriously think my rendition is better!

The skirt was easy enough to make -- it's 10 gores, which gives it that flouncey bottom! The bodice was a little bit of a challenge for me. The basic pieces went together nicely, and so did the sleeves, but I had some issues with the collar and front zipper. The collared version is supposed to button up the front, but I liked the zipper better. Putting in the zipper was no biggie -- I just ended up having to remove it and re-sew it more than once!

This is why: the collar gave me some issues. There is no neck facing in these 30s patterns. They have to do a lapped collar instead. While I can easily do that, I just don't like it that much. It also left a bit of raw edge between the collar and the zipper and it didn't look good. This dress was too perfect to just make it "passable" so I tore the collar off and made a facing for it. Aaaah! It sat much better and looked so perfect! But then the zipper sat up too high...lol. All this and I managed to finish it from Friday to Monday. It was my baby and I became addicted to getting her just perfect!

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Dress of the Century: 1940-1949

Time for the 1940s!

1940

1941

1942

1943

1944

1945

1946

1947

1948

1949