Friday, August 14, 2015

Ready-Made Clothing - Future Plans Update

Earlier this spring I posted about my future sewing plans for Emily's Vintage Visions. There is still much to be done! I'm making progress, it's slow going, but progress none the less. I hope by this fall to have a small inventory of ready made items to list for sale on etsy. (Probably October or early November, stay tuned for updates!) I am continuing to work on my business plan while I work a some sample items using fabrics I already have in my stash. The second part of my clothing survey can be viewed here.

Looking at the results of my clothing first survey, (which is still available here) many of you want to see more separates like blouses and skirts that can be mixed and matched. I totally agree! So I will be starting with some 1930s and 1940s blouses first. Dresses are great, and I WILL be making some :), but having items that can be worn multiple ways just makes sense. Our mothers and grandmothers did that so why not us? Here is a peak at some of the patterns I plan to use. I've made several of these for myself, some like Du Barry 5172, Hollywood 1530, and Mail Order 2588 I've sewn more then once. I used Simplicity 1782 for my Spring for Cotton project.

Here are a few of my favorite and easy to sew dress patterns. I'm working on Advance 4199 in a lovely purple and white print for the shop now. You can see more of my patterns here.

McCall 3306 was my 2014 Sew for Victory Dress. I listed this one on Etsy.

See version of dress here

See Simplicity 1668 one made up here.

Good news for the larger size vintage loving ladies! With the help of some amazing friends I've been increasing my stash of vintage patterns with bust sizes 38 to 44! If anyone has vintage patterns they would like to sell or trade for please let me know.

This suit is divine!
Survey results
The results of my survey so far have been extremely helpful! Some of the feedback matches what I expected to see but some of it was pleasantly surprising too. 1940s clothing seems to be leading the way with the 1930s and 1950s in a close second. You should have been able to select more then one option for this first question but for some reason that didn't work. However, most people have been good about leaving a comment with their additional wished for decade(s). Over 90% of you who have taken the survey said you were looking for vintage style clothing to wear everyday or just for fun. Just under 50% said they wanted items for vintage inspired events or for dancing.

For colors, blue was by far the most popular with green not far behind. In the comment section of this question the most popular colors suggested were red, purples (including lilac and eggplant), yellow or gold and grey. The number of suggestions for grey surprised me but it makes sense as it's a color that can be paired with so many others.

It looks like prints are in high demand too.

Here is a look at some of the fabrics I plan to use or have already made sample garments from. If you follow me on Facebook you will know that the cherry print has been made into a 1940s pinafore. The eagle print is true 40s vintage, others are reproductions! I will try to get more of the Scottie dog print. I also have some of it in red.

I also posted some other possibilities for reproduction prints such as this one, or this one, or this one on Facebook. Thank you to everyone who has commented on which color(s) they like best. There are so many options out there! I know what colors and prints I like best but it's important that I offer things that you will like and buy. :)

Some of my fabrics in the stash.

Some purple and pink prints in the stash! I have some of the Scottie Dogs in red too.

There are literally TONS of places online to buy fabric and I have several brick and mortar options near by too. My local quilt shop has, no lie, a WALL of 1930s/40s reproduction cotton prints!! They are a little pricey but I have been able to find a few of the prints they offer for sale at other location for a bit less. Which is great because the less I have to spend on materials up front the more you will be able to save on my finished clothing! Hooray! However, I know I will need to take the time spent sewing each garment into consideration when figuring out a price. This is one of the areas where having a good business plan will really help.

Some of the comments on my survey about pricing that I've found very helpful are ...

  •  "I LOVE reproductions, but don't like to wear originals or things made with original fabric." 
  • "I realize that it can cost more than that to produce a garment, I'm just stating my realistic budget for spending money on a garment."
  • "It would really depend on the fabric and the details. $100 for a very plain cotton dress to over two hundred for wool or silk dress with special touches of buttons or trim."
  • "For a nice dress I can save and spend this range, but I am most likely to buy lower priced items that can be mixed/matched, like blouses or skirts in the 70-100 range."
  • "Would prefer less-costly historically similar textile & finishings to more-costly actually-historic textile/finishing." 
Other helpful comments included:
  • "Specifically with INTERESTING details like fun collars or sleeves!"
  • "It would be great to see prints based on actual vintage."
  • "Separates are always very nice - cute blouses and skirts."
  • "Trousers, suits, things that can be purchased and help build classic mix and match wardrobes."
And a few that made me smile!
  • "I would love a beautiful wool suit!"
  • "For church, and especially everyday, since my wardrobe is all made of vintage-inspired clothing."
  • "Red! I look excellent in red."
  • "Anything . So long as it catches my eye, the colours compliment each other and me and is a standout from the crowd sort of fabric"
In addition to  blouses and skirts I want to offer some light jackets. LOOK at this pattern I scored on the evil bay! Can't you envision a line of cute cotton print bolero jackets? Or lace? Oh the possibilities are endless!

Depending on how well things sell, I eventually want to expand my selection to offer play suits and outerwear. But that will be a ways down the road. I need to start small with just a few items at a time and see how well they sell. But it's so much to fun to think about all the possibilities. ;)

I would love to hear your thoughts! If you have not taken my survey please do. The second part is here! (Or at the upper right of my blog.) Also, please feel free to leave a comment on this post or feel free to send me an email at vintagevisions27(at)gmail(dot)com.
Thanks everyone!


  1. Oh, these patterns look lovely and I am nearly drooling over some of those fabrics! I can't wait to browse your shop once you start it up!! Good luck!!

  2. This is fabulous! I love that you're including harder to find pieces like light jackets and mix-and-match pieces. And I second the gray color love!

  3. Ooooh! What fun fabrics you have in your stash! I am so jealous!!! I look forward to seeing your clothing offerings and wish you great success!!! This is going to be fun!

  4. Oh wow, I am excited to see how this goes for you!! I too have a long pipe dream to do repro clothing, eh, maybe a couple years after college for me.
    And I am officially jealous of your quilting shop! Now I think I'll give mine a peak!

    Carla, TinyAngryCrafts

  5. You have a marvellous collection of patterns there and I love the blue fabric with the green, red and yellow flowers. All your plans sound very exciting. Some larger bust size blouses would be most appreciated!

  6. I love all the vintage items here!!! You have a lovely blog. :)


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