Thursday, April 30, 2015

Spring for Cotton - Simplicity 1782

Here is my finished Spring for Cotton project! A 1940s blouse using Simplicity 1782. I'm also counting this towards my list of Vintage Pattern Sewing Pledge projects. :)

As you can see I've been experimenting with different scrafs to make a turban. This particular scarf is fairly long but only around 8 or 10 inches wide. I've also been sewing some dusting cap/turbans which is the subjust of another post. ;)

For these photos I paired the blouse with my WAVE skirt, a new to me pair of 1940s navy blue shoes, a felt flower boutineer from my wedding, and a couple of my red and black bracelets. The large red zig zag bracelet I believe is Bakelite and I think are as well except for the black one. I know there are several ways to test Bakelite but I've only tried the rub/smell test. I don't ofter wear bracelets because most are too big for my wrists. Also since I work at a compute most of the day I find they get in the way when I'm typing.

This wasn't originally on my list of patterns to make for the Vintage Pattern Sewing Pledge or Spring for Cotton because at the time I didn't own a copy. I first came across Simplicity 1782 while browsing the "evil bay" this winter. I missed out on a copy at the last minute, darn you snipers! I did find another copy in a different size but couldn't bring myself to spend $40.00 for a blouse pattern. Le sigh. I saved an image of the pattern and moved on. Much to my delight another copy came up for sale, again on the evil bay, and I was determined not to miss out this time! Now I finally have a copy and oh do I have plans for this blouse!

As you will see, I decided to test this pattern in some quilting cotton from the stash. But I have other fabrics destined to become tops. I'm thinking of making either View 1 or 2 from this semi-sheer white on white cotton and another version of View 3 in the yellow and white. :) Something bright for spring!

So, the details. This pattern went together fast! Laying out the pattern and cutting always seems to take a long time but even that went fairly quickly as there were so few pieces. The blouse is made using a front, back, two peplum pieces and a sleeve piece. Depending on the view you pick, you have options for the sleeves and peplum. For my wearable mockup I went with View 3 with the shorter sleeves and wider peplum.

The back is cut on the fold with darts added to the waist and shoulders. The front is two pieces seamed up the middle with a small amount of shearing at the sides. After sewing up the sides and shoulders, I attached the peplum and tried it on for fit. I found the top to be a touch snug so I let the side seams out a little and that helped some. After that all that was left to do were the sleeves, the side placket, and binding the neck and hem with bias tape. Pretty simple. The short sleeve pattern piece looks like an elongated oval. You cut one piece for each sleeve which is then folded in half WRONG sides together and sewn into the arm hole. I didn't have any off white bias tape for the neck and hem but the white doesn't really show.

Overall I'm pretty happy with how this turned out and I think I have a very wearable muslin/mock up. It does have some minor fitting issues to work out. I found that the waist seam hit at exactly the same level as my skirt waistband and the waistband of my favorite high waisted pants. This makes it look and feel a little awkward. I think shortening the waist would help a little bit. Also, and maybe it's just the color and/or material I used but when I first tried this blouse on it looked very much like a maternity top. Adding a dark belt helped somewhat. Quilting cotton may be just a little too stiff for this blouse, just my two cents. The next time I make it will be with a much softer cotton.

Outfit Details
Blouse - Made by Me, Simplicity 1782
Skirt - WAVE uniform skirt, thrifted
Bracelets - Local antique shops
Shoes - Ebay
Flowers - from my wedding, 1940s Style for You on Etsy
Scarf - thrifted

And this photo. Because, flamingos!

Summary of the Pattern
Quilting cotton
Pattern: Simplicity 1782, View 3, Size 14/32" bust
Year: 1946
Notions: Thread, bias tape, snaps.
How historically accurate is it? Not bad. The fabric is not a reproduction print but I think it has a cute vintage feel to it.
Any tricky parts to the pattern? Not really. This pattern seemed to go together really fast and easy.
Did you change anything? The pattern calls for 5/8" seams but I found the blouse to be a little snug in the waist and difficult to put on and take off. I changed the seams to 3/8" and this helped.When I make this again, which I plan to do, I will build in a little extra seam allowance.
Time to complete: 3 to 4 hours
First worn: Yesterday for photos.
Total cost: All the materials were from the stash! Yeah! I think I paid around $12 for the pattern.
Notes: Next time I will a more ease to the waist. Also shorten the waist a little bit.

Here is a peak at some of the other tops I plan to sew this year. :) These are both 1950s and will be great for summer. Don't forget about my "Color Recipes for Spring" photo contest, there are still a few days left. You can read the details on how to enter here. (The deadline has been move to Sunday May 3rd!) For inspiration see this post and my interpretation of the color descriptions here.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Photo Contest Inspiration Part 2

OK ladies, just a few days left! Several of you mentioned you would like to participate in my "Color Recipes for Spring" photo contest but so far only one person has sent me photos. Don't worry you still have time! You can email me at vintagevisions27 (at) gmail (dot) com. The deadline is Sunday May 3rd. The winner will be announced in early May and receive a special prize.

- Please Note! I'm moving the deadline back to May 3rd to give everyone a few more days. That also give me more time to put together the prize. :) -
Just a quick recap on the contest details for those who may have missed my earlier post. The goal is to create a 1930s or 1940s outfit using inspiration from this newspaper article. The only requirements are your outfit must be 1930s or 1940s and inspired by the color descriptions in the newspaper article provided. Feel free to use any combination of vintage, reproduction or new items (as long as they fit the theme) to create your outfit. (OLL gals feel free to use items purchased through that group - I know many of you have scored some amazing things! - and let me know if you have done so.) Email your photo with a short description. If you have a blog or other website let me know so I can link back to you when I share the photos. Photos will be shared here on my blog as well as in a special album on my Facebook page.

Here are my "Vintage Color Recipes" outfits to help inspire you. This past weekend was finally warm enough to take some photos outside. Well, Saturday anyway. Things are starting to turn green at last! I was very pleased to see I few spring blubs in the gardens too. Since we moved into our new house in September, I never had the chance to see what kind of flowers might be in the gardens because most everything had gone by at that point. I don't plan to do much with the gardens this year other then weeding and taking notes on what comes up. I do think I will be ordering more spring bulbs because those first splashes of color are a must after a long winter. Particularly like the one we just had!

So on to my first outfit. Of all the color descriptions in the Dallas article, this one about the red shoes and bags stuck out to me the most. Like many people, when I think of spring colors I think of pinks, yellows, light blues and greens. All those wonderful pastel colors that suddenly appear everywhere just before Easter. I don't have many pastels in my wardrobe, vintage or modern. But as you will see below, I did manage to put together a pink outfit. :) Reading through these descriptions and going through my vintage clothing and accessories was a lot of fun. And in doing so I learned a number of things. It really made me think about colors and the many ways to mix and match to make the most of your wardrobe.

- I have more colors in my vintage closet then I thought, that being said I need to add the following colors; Lime green, Cyclamen, and in general more pastels.
- I never would have thought about pairing lime green with navy blue!
- Brown for spring? Who knew!

I didn't have a lime green or chartreuse dress so I went with gold/mustard yellow. This dress was purchased through the Ooh La La! Vintage Swap and Sell Shop Facebook group. As I write this post I realize that the only green dress I have is my 2014 Sew for Victory dress. It's not lime or chartreuse but more of a minty green. Still, I may try another photo shoot in the future and pair it with the accessories you see below.

And finally we come to dark-red shoes and bags, preferably in alligator, please, and sometimes referred to as mulberry, claret, wine Burgundy. If you must ... the budget rears its head .... you can have your alligator simulated. Or, if and alligator scared your mother, you can still have accessories in one of these deep rich reds in pigskin, suede, or a fabric.

    Shoes and bag worn with the following, and you'll look good enough to eat: ...
2) A chartreuse dress, dark red coat, soft blue hat, light beige gloves.   

 Personally I think this outfit would be better for late summer or fall. Although with a lime green or chartreuse dress I could certainly see it for spring.

Outfit details - Gold and Red
Dress - Ooh La La! Vintage Swap and Sell Shop Facebook group
Gloves, Bangles and Purse- Thrifted
Shoes - Ebay

Here you see the same gold dress but this time paired with green gloves, shoes, and purse. All three came to me together and have a very special story which I will be sharing in a future post. The little straw hat is one I reshaped and added velvet ribbon to. You may remember it from photos of my green Sew for Victory dress. 

Outfit details - Gold and Green
Dress - Ooh La La! Vintage Swap and Sell Shop Facebook group
Hat -  My own creation
Gloves, Shoes and Purse- Ebay

The article didn't mention much about pink. And as it turns out it's a color I don't have a ton of anyway. I did, however, recently pick up this little pink dress at a local shop a few weeks back. It's a bit worn but was just fine to wear for these pictures. It's hard to tell but the pink fabric has little white dots but on close inspections you can see that most of them have faded from the shoulders and sleeves.

Outfit details - Thinking Pink
Dress - Vintage Vermont Antique Shop
Gloves and Purse - Thirfted
Pin - Brimfield Flea Market

Sunday was overcast and rainy so I had to resort to taking photos inside. This didn't last long because I had too much "help" from my fluffy friends. Sorry for the poor photo quality, my lighting was not very good.

I don't have a blue pinstripe suit but I do have fabric and a pattern. That counts right?

Navy is a long-time favorite every spring. Combined with white touches, you've got something. Our frosted ensemble required the following: With navy shoes and navy bag, a two-piece navy suit, white frilly blouse, white hat, white veil. ...

Navy and Red.
(1) If you prefer the lipstick red, choose a narrow leather belt, a shoulder bouquet, and a ribbon band for your hat in the red. Wear it with a navy skirt, a navy jacket with a white chalk stripe, navy sailor, navy shoes, bag and white gloves.

(2) If you prefer the bright red, wear a navy blue suit with polka-dot taffeta collar, navy straw hat with a white and bright red ribbon crown, navy shoes and  bag, white gloves. 

Blue dress - made by me using DuBarry 2413B (See more photos here)
Flowers - from my wedding and made by 1940s Style For You on Etsy
Gloves, scarf, etc. - Thrifted

Brown is really the last color I want to wear in spring but I can see with the right accessories it could be very pretty.
Noble Idea.
Because of the popularity of some colors, there will be some who will wear a less popular color in order to be individual. Thus brown is literally and figuratively a dark horse for spring. ... 

Brown suit - Morning Glorious Vintage (see more photos of it here)
Orange turban- made by me
Gloves, purse. - Thrifted
Bangles - Ooh La La! Vintage Swap and Sell Shop Facebook group

So there you have it! I can't wait to see what you ladies come up with. :) Oh and just a note about the prize, I've been working on a couple turbans/dusting caps from a vintage pattern. I'll be including one as part of my prize package.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Photo Contest Inspiration Part 1

Hello all! Just a reminder that there is still plenty of time to enter my "Color Recipes for Spring" photo contest. For those that missed my early post you and read all about it here. I've been working on putting together a few of my own outfits to show you. However, that last few days have been rather rainy and cold. No good for outside photos. :( Hopefully the weather will cooperate this weekend.

-Please Note! I'm moving the deadline back to May 3rd to give everyone a few more days. That also give me more time to put together the prize. :) - 

In the mean time here are a few images I've found around the web. You have until April 30th to email me a photo of your outfit - vintagevisions27 (at) gmail (dot) com -  if you would like to be included. I will post the photos to an album on my Facebook page so everyone can see them as well as create a special blog post. The winner, or winners if I can't decide on just one, with receive a vintage spring theme prize!

From Woman's Sphere magazine, April 1941 - Source
This one is summer, but these accessories are so pretty!

Sears Midsummer Catalog 1944 - Source
How about this fantastic navy blue fitted linen jacket with chartreuse skirt!?

Sold by Dear Golden



Monday, April 13, 2015

The White Lightning Dress

On March 28th I attended the Greater Boston Vintage Society's White Lightning Ball. Like last year, the event was held at the Larz Anderson Auto Museum. What a fun time! I had a few people tell me how much I looked like Lady Edith from Downton Abbey. That was fun to hear because she's my favorite character. Cori looked rather dapper in his vintage suit and boater. And later in the evening he and a small group staged a police raid! The bootleggers bribed the policemen and everyone returned to having a good time.

One big highlight of the event for me was being asked if I would participate as a vendor. This was certainly a learning experience for me. Although I have a few things on Etsy, which for me is essentially an online yard sale at this point, I really do want to expand in the future and offer more. (Including more ready-made items!) Over all I'd say it was successful as I did sell a few things. One of my favorite (thought sadly too small for me) pair of shoes went to a knew home and most exciting this dress was purchased by the singer from Baby Soda! 

My embarrassingly large collection of stuff to sell
I made a new dress using a 1920s pattern I purchased over the winter. I used a lovely ivory silk that I purchased from Deletable Mountain Cloth during their winter sale. Visiting that shop is such a treat! Soooooo many pretties! Fabrics and buttons oh my! You can order from them online but it's best to call if you are looking for something specific, or even better to visit the shop in person. Trust me, you wont be disappointed! I had every intention of picking out a colored fabric for my dress but I kept going back to this particular silk. I really liked the design and feel, it struck me as very Art Deco. I have enough left over for another small project, possible a blouse, so I might try dying it. I'll play around with the scraps first. :)

I really wanted to order these gold 1920s style shoes from Amazon to go with the dress. The reviews are mixed but I really liked they way they looked with Katherine of The Fashionable Past's 1922 Harper's Bazar gala dress. However, shipping for these shoes was going to take up to a month. I didn't want to wait that long and take the chance of them not showing up in time. :( While far from perfect these pink and brown heels have become my go to shoes for any 1920s and 1930s outfits but sadly are not the most comfortable to wear. I really need to invest in a good pair of black reproduction1920s style shoes. The Cicero style Exclusives recently offered by American Duchess would have been perfect but were out of my price range. I do love that Lauren is offering these one of kind shoes.

So on to the construction details! I used a cotton muslin to test the pattern. It looks rather odd because I didn't have enough fabric to cut the full length of the right front panel. Not really an issue though as this was just a mock up. The dress is made from a back panel cut on the fold with little darts at the neck, a left front, a right front, girdle, as well as bodice and skirt cascades. I left the sleeves off . The right front crosses over the left and attaches with a series of snaps on the bodice and hips. The girdle is sewn into one side seam then wraps around the back and attaches at the opposite hip. I added a few extra snaps for good measure. Because my silk was rather delicate I made little cotton patches to go behind the snaps for extra support. 

The dress made up in cotton muslin to test the pattern.

Here is a good look at the bodice and skirt cascades. The pattern gives you the option of either hemming the edges or trimming off the seam allowance and adding a binding. I knew I wanted to add a little color to this dress some how so I opted for the binding. My original plan was to only use a yellow/gold trim because I wanted to pair the dress with gold shoes. But as my search for the perfect shoes hit a road block I decided to use a combination of yellow and pink to better match the shoes I already had. (That I didn't end up wearing after all.)

The dress before the colored binding was added

The binding was sewn first to the right side of the silk then folded over and pressed and hand sewn in place. 

And a few more shots of the finished dress. The lighting was not very good for pictures which is why all of mine look dark or washed out.

Outfit Details
1920s Silk Dress - Made by me using Vogue 9010
Shoes - umm Payless?
Girdle and silk slip - Etsy
Seamed stocking - What Katie Did
Jewelry - Antique store finds

Summary of the Pattern
Fabric: Silk from Delectable Mountain Cloth
Pattern: Vogue 9010
Year: 1920s
Notions: Snaps, thread, pink and yellow China silk ribbon for binding
How historically accurate is it? Very.
Any tricky parts to the pattern? Not really
Did you change anything? Left off the sleeves for more of an evening look. Shortened the hem about 1 1/2". I also added some additional snaps to the waist/hip area and some extra shirring to the girdle. The dress was a little high under the arms so I cut the arm holes a little deeper.
Time to complete: ummm, hard to say. I worked on it off and one for about 2 weeks.
First worn: March 28th, 2015 for the GBVS 2nd White Lightening Ball at the Larz Anderson Car Museum
Wear Again? Yes.
Notes: Due to the cascades and overall feel of this particular style, this pattern does need to be made with fabric that drapes nicely. One should also avoid fabrics with an obvious right and wrong side. My mock up was made using a cotton muslin which didn't really hang right. It worked well for determining the overall fit of the pattern however and allowed me to mark up the fabric as needed. If I make this pattern again, which I would like to for day wear, I might try it with crepe and a contrasting cascade.

Cori's Outfit Details
Vintage 3 piece suit - Purchased from a vendor at the Reading Air Show last summer
Shirt, Tie, Cufflinks - Thrifted
Straw Boater - Etsy
Suspenders - Who Is Sylvia?
Shoes - 1930s reproduction shoes from the

1940s LADP Uniform
This uniform was pieced together from a number of vendors. Some pieces like the buttons and badge were special ordered. Most everything else came from Ebay or Etsy.
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