After making my pink-and-gray plaid 1930s dress, I decided to make the pattern again. This time I used a pinstripe in sea foam and white, and used eyelet for the sleeves and yoke.
The result was a very spring-ish kind of dress, perfect for transitional days when short sleeves are too cool.
It went together even faster than the pink and gray one - probably because this was the second time for this pattern and I knew what I was doing.
This time I did not do a lapped seam on the yoke, but it still worked just fine when assembling.
I lined the front and back bodice pieces so that I could wear it with a half slip. Since the eyelet is fairly sheer I wanted to avoid shoulder straps. The giant bow is just pinned on so I can wear it with or without.
Since it was kind of rainy when we took these pictures, I had to carry one of my vintage umbrellas around a little, just for fun!
And because we didn't have to avoid full sunshine, I got to take a few pictures by the gorgeous iris bed in our yard.
Everything I liked about the first version of this pattern, I like about this dress too. The details, and the blousy-but-not-too-blousy fit. The belt adds a bit of stripe play to the outfit.
For this version I used the other bodice view since because of the stripes I couldn't cut it on the bias, though I didn't follow the instructions for doing that view's facing. So it is changed up a bit from the first version. I also lengthened this version. It's quite long and elegant when I'm standing, but when I sit down, because the skirt isn't very flared, it doesn't look so long.
I didn't have a hat that matched, so my accessories are simple. My favorite white gauntlets mirror the openwork pattern of the eyelet.
I also bought a pair of reproduction T-strap, spectator shoes. They are supposed to be suitable for costumes from the Titanic era into the 1930s. I don't know how long they will last since they are not real leather, but they are very pretty, and I needed white shoes.
What fun to see an idea worked up in real life! If I ever need a 1930s tea party dress, this is it.
One of my new favorite projects turned out to be my first try at matching stripes!
I had this piece of striped fabric in my stash for a while now, but never felt confident enough to tackle matching stripes - and I do like a nicely made striped dress. Until the striped illustration on this pattern from 1940 caught my eye.
It was surprisingly easy! Cutting the skirt on the bias (it also has a straight option) means there's plenty of stretch in the fabric which means I could tug it just a bit if needed to make the side and center seams match up.
I'm very proud of those matching seams! Everything ended up matching except the underarm seams and part of the shoulder seams. Not too bad for a first attempt!
There is lots of fun detail besides, in the top-stitched belt and pleats on both bodice and skirt.
There are lots of things to like about this dress. It is comfortable to wear since the skirt is fitted at the hips but has some extra width thanks to the pleats. With the tie in front, no belt is needed - rare in vintage dresses.
And the top is slightly blousy, but not too much for my taste. No restriction on movement, which again makes it comfortable to work and play in.
Another new thing for me with this project was the contrast I used. I always have a hard time mixing prints. Some people can do it and the projects turn out lovely, but I always err on the side of caution and rarely use a print as a contrast with a print. This time, though, I wanted to highlight the olive-gold circles in the fabric, and we had nothing that matched, so I went down the road to our local tiny fabric store. Everything there was either too green or too yellow, until I spotted a reproduction fabric that was exactly the color I needed...and it had a tiny circle print. I decided it was a perfect match anyway and actually like the way the contrast mirrors the fabric print.
(The buttons were two different brands, on two different cards, bought at different times! They so nearly matched that I used them together anyway, alternating one from each card.)
This dress was a bit of an adventure, but it turned out so well that I felt definitely encouraged. Some projects are boring, some are frustrating and take will power to finish, and some go together without a hitch or tedious moment. This dress was one of those.
So another house dress is added to my spring wardrobe, and my sewing skills (and confidence) are expanded. Now if I could just find a way to also expand my closet space...
So, this image caught my eye one day recently when scrolling through images on Pinterest. I loved view 2's use of contrast, and instantly realized its similarity to a 1930s pattern already in my stash.
Of course I had to make my own version, to add to the growing 1930s section of my wardrobe!
I do like the color choices of the pattern illustration better, but I didn't have the right combo, so I used fabric on hand (always a good thing, right?)
The main fabric for the dress I thought could look Art Deco with its diamond print. It's actually a reproduction cotton print from the 1800s. What do you think? Does it work?
For the contrasting panel I used up the leftovers from this project. (Also the belt buckle.) Everything from the stash, including finding a use for some scraps - that's what I call a successful project. As long as it fits. :-)
The dress is a simple one, with a huge wing collar and a fitted A-line skirt that isn't too snug. I skipped the bother of making the neck piece open at the top, so it's tight to get over my head. Next time I won't cut corners.
The skirt panel shapes the front of the skirt, and the front and back bodice are pleated, so the 2 back skirt darts were the only darts in the whole dress.
Like the pattern illustration I decided to put a bow at the top. I hunted through my patterns to find a good bow pattern (I was too lazy to draft one myself) and found this one, which turned out huge but that works for a 1930s dress. I pin it on, so it can be removed if I want to wear a brooch or long necklace instead.
I was unsure how to style the dress since the print makes me feel like it should be a house dress, but it also feels a little more formal to wear, so I decided to dress it up a bit with a 1930s straw hat that has seen better days, and some gigantic straw-colored gauntlets. The navy in the contrast I picked up with vintage 1930s or '40s navy sandals, and a dark blue thrifted clutch (both of which are staples in my accessory collection).
It is quite comfortable to wear, and I like the length and the amount of style yet simplicity of this pattern. I would like to make it again in a more formal version with solid color and contrast like the pattern illustration, but meanwhile I am satisfied with this one for a trial.