Wednesday, November 25, 2009

my vintage patterns

I can't believe that it has been 3 weeks since I posted! I feel like I have lots of news. First off I have finished the navy blue corduroy jumper mentioned in the previous post. I wore it to a friends for dinner and got lots of compliments. I forgot to take a picture so that is still coming. I think I am going to wear it this weekend to show off so I will be sure to get a picture then. Secondly is a string of related things:
I got this book about a month ago. I have been lurking ebay and the internet trying to find the patterns and I have found a few but they go for prices that I can't really afford right now. This was kind of discouraging so I stopped obsessively looking for them and instead tried to find similar patterns which has been fairly successful; some of which I like even better. Then I decided that if I am going to spend this much time and money on it I might as well just get the patterns I like. (Duh!) So I have been building a wardrobe with the idea behind the selection of patterns in VoNBBS sort of guiding me. I really liked the portrait neckline blouse and the idea of a slim skirt so I started there.

The illustrations Vogue decided to use on the front of the envelope are unfortunate because this top has more variations that you don't even know about until you flip over the envelope.

oh. hey! a sleeve variation and a low back neckline variation! If the seller hadn't photographed the back of the envelope I would never have even considered bidding on it. I like variety. It gives the pattern more longevity. The seller I bought this from also included a handwritten thank you note and told me he would be adding more 50's and 60's patterns soon. I am a HUGE sucker for a handwritten note so I checked back in his shop to see what else I could find.

The slim skirt. I like this one, again, for the variations. released pleats/darts, welt pockets or the cute side front yokes. It is a one yard "instant" skirt. This seems to have been a popular theme. (I am desperately in love with Advance 8425 but haven't any luck finding it yet)

This super fantastic dress has a variation with slits in the neckline so you can pull your scarf through! This was one of my favorite features of the background dress from VoNBBS. I also like the other 2 neckline variations. The tabbed version reminds me of this dress.
I received these in the mail just today but there was a third pattern in with them! Curious. I looked for the handwritten note.
"Thanks again Amy. I included an extra pattern just for the fun of it. Maybe you can use it with the skirt."


I love it! This is a blouse for all seasons and has lots of options. And it has a monogram. I always wanted to be like Lavergne and put a large "A" on all my sweaters. And it back buttons. Back buttoning blouses have been sort of scarce. How awesome was that?
The what is to be a very awesome, very vintage make over of my wardrobe is off to a good start. I am trying to stop obsessively looking at patterns and start obsessively sewing. I have a project that is on temporary hold since I am out of town for a few days over the holiday but I am hoping to finish up the first half of my 40's knitted moss stitch turban.

Happy Thanksgiving! Make sure you eat too much!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


I started making muslins for two different patterns that are essentially the same project. I have about 3 yards of navy blue pinwhale corduroy and I have been trying to figure out what to make out of it. I originally bought it to make a pair of wide leg pants but honestly I hate wearing pants and my wardrobe needs more fall/winter skirts. At first I thought just a simple A-line skirt with a center seam and the panels cut on the bias so they chevron in the center. But I wasn't really sold on it. Then I actually pulled out the material and it is much lighter weight and finer whaled than I had imagined it. I never really wanted a skirt anyway so I decided to make a jumper. The corduroy is so fine that not only can I not find the nap (I am slightly embarrassed to admit it) but it is almost like velveteen so I thought maybe a jumper that could be dressed up with snap in chiffon details and go cocktail hour. (a la the left)

Not really sure how that would work out so it is scrapped or at least on the back burner for now, mostly because I am on muslin number 2 and I am getting sick of it. I originally was making the Coffee Date Dress by Elaine May over on BurdaStyle because it was the overall shape and style I wanted and the pattern is free (so I don't have to buy it and I don't have to draft it myself). This was my first time using a pattern from BurdaStyle and while I think it is convenient and awesome that I can print a pattern at home it is sort of not convenient and not so awesome. There is a lot of taping and a lot of matching up things that don't exactly match and the trying to get it to print the right scale. Pluses and minuses, pluses and minuses. Back to the pattern I am mostly finished with the muslin except for a zipper to see if it does indeed really fit and I had decided to lower the back neckline. I was all settled on it. Then because of several other things going on that started influencing my every waking consciousness (more on this in another post) I remembered that I had this:

It is one of the two patterns I bought in July at my favorite shop. I had never pulled them out to check if they were complete. So I did that. And THEY ARE!! best $2 ever spent. So I decided to make a mock up of this jumper because I know the waist will need to be um...let out and it will need to be shortened by about 10 or so inches. I did the darts on the bodice and then I lost my sewing mojo. I just want it done already and what am I supposed to do with the muslins other than relegating them to the scrap bin? Then I read on Gertie's BurdaStyle Vintage Thursday column that women used to do tissue fittings and basted fittings because doing muslin mock ups is expensive and a more modern phenomenon anyway. Honestly I am always terrified that I will accidentally destroy the tissue if I do this but I think I am going to try it on this and then trace off the alterations onto kraft paper so I can still keep the original, original. And that is where I am now.