Today I want to show you one of my newer sewing projects, which again demonstrates how simple and classy can go hand in hand.
After purchasing this pattern, I was intrigued by the plaid version with the front panels cut on the bias. I knew I had to try it, so out came a length of green and black plaid fabric which I hoped would make a suitable dress for summer. (I like to wear dark colors in the summer so I don't have to wear so many layers.)
I wasn't so thrilled with the fabric. It has a really clingy nap that attracts dust and lint like magnets, and it is ever so slightly scratchy. But the pattern and dress overall I was very pleased with! It's simple and smart.
That skirt yoke is flattering and adds interest, and while I didn't do a good job with plaid matching unfortunately, I love the subtle detail the bias panels contribute and would love to do it again on another version - and pay attention to doing a better matching job!
The fabric hides the top stitching pretty well, but the yoke is top stitched on the front. I also top stitched on either side of the seam on the back skirt seams. Just for fun. And ease in pressing since that holds the seams open.
The skirt has that 1950s flare that doesn't require a crinoline, and the stiffish fabric (the upside to not being a soft fabric) helps keep the silhouette. Except when you're trying to take pictures, and it's breezy! Ahem!
While I intended to wear it as a house dress, the vintage black and gold buttons dress it up and I decided it should be accessorized for these photos as if it were an afternoon dress, so I went with all black or black and gold accessories. I love the small roll-back collar and it always stays in place, which is a definite plus. I like the plaid play of a self collar, but a contrasting one would look great too - maybe for my next version.
The vintage purse is I think 1940s, but it matched so well I had to carry it anyway. The pumps are 1950s black suede heels; the belt is probably from the 1980s or later, but again has the right feel for the era.
The cocktail hat, in black velvet and gold patterned brocade, is another dressy touch that takes the dress to a smart town-to-dinner level.
Other than the yoke and bias panels, it's super easy and rather basic. Darted front and back, set in sleeves (which I added bias trim to instead of just facing them), and simple gored skirt. Buttons down the front and side zipper - all classic vintage dress elements.
I like to call this kind of sewing project Basic-But-Not-Boring. Sometimes you want to fuss over lots of fiddly details and spend hours doing hand sewing or something similar, but sometimes something easy yet a little out of the ordinary is called for. Something simple but with a special fashion touch that catches your interest. Especially when you want a quickly finished project. This one took parts of two or three afternoons to complete in a leisurely fashion.
This is the first time I've tried using different button sizes like this, but I think it works! Nothing like taking on small adventures. :-)
And even when I'm just wearing it accessory-less, with a black belt, for everyday wear, it feels ultra-1950s!