New York Pattern 1942 and Simplicity 1319

New York Pattern circa: 1940

New York Pattern circa: 1940

In the run up to Christmas I was overtaken by festive enthusiasm and bought 3 lengths of fabric suitable for Christmas frocks.  The one featured here is a 100% viscose with a bit of a 30’s vibe showing almost Disneyish bambi’s set amongst pastel geometric shapes and grids.  Having always admired the novelty prints used in clothing from the 30’s, 40’s and 50’s I dug out a pattern I bought a few seasons ago and decided to run up this little treasure from ‘New York Pattern’ circa: 1940’s.   I then stumbled on a wonderful piece of duck egg blue pure wool in a charity shop which had been moth nibbled but still enough fabric to cut out a cheeky bolero using Simplicity’s repro pattern number 1319.

Simplicity 1319 1950s vintage reproduction pattern

Simplicity 1319 1950s vintage reproduction pattern

If you are used to using vintage patterns you won’t find the lack of printing on the tissues alarming – the way to proceed is to mark each perforation with a tailor tack and you can then orientate yourself to the written instructions for constructing the garment.  In respect of the changes I made they are as follows;

I went for the long straight sleeve but added a bias vent finished with bias binding and a hand sewn button loop.  I did this for two reasons.  I prefer a tighter cuff as it doesn’t get in the way of day to day life and also I think it gives a more sympathetic line to the sleeve.  I may well make this dress again with the short flowing sleeve for a summer frock.

Button loop in peach embroidery floss with a pearl button.

Button loop in peach embroidery floss with a pearl button.

I also prefer a more sturdy belt as opposed to a sash and bow as suggested in the pattern.  I hope you admire the gorgeous 1930s plastic buckle I used from the extensive buckle stash – I couldn’t believe the colour match.

Coral 1930s buckle - lovely!

Coral 1930s buckle – lovely!

Now to the neckline – I first cut the pattern with the high neckline and when I tried it on I felt like a cruise liner in full sail with fabric billowing over my not unsubstantial chest – recut.  I took it down – tried it again – lower, lower.  So here is the preferred neck line awaiting bias binding to finish.

I love the pitched midriff detail - such a feature of 40's cutting.

I love the pitched midriff detail – such a feature of 40’s cutting

Onto the bolero – it really is thrilling when a plan comes together and I had just enough of the dress fabric to line my little bolero.  This is too cute and fits like a dream with lovely shaping achieved by plenty of darts at the back neck front shoulder and elbow.  Careful steaming is required to roll the collar over and I switched the direction of my stab stitching at the collar break point instead of understitching as advised in the pattern.  I felt a hard line of stitching on the inside facing wouldn’t be a sympathetic finish.  I have yet to finish the sleeve lining but will endeavour to finish that soon.  You may also notice that I didn’t add the false pocket bands – having put them on in the first place I felt the balance of the garment was compromised by them being too close to the hem and looking slightly clumsy – not to my taste!

A sweet bolero

A sweet bolero

Sitting beautifully on the waistline

Sitting beautifully on the waistline

Love a cool lining!

Love a cool lining!

I’m so excited at the prospect of wearing my new outfit – I think it’s going out tomorrow night to a swing dance Stratford Stomp hosted by www.cactuspromotions.co.uk

Hope you have enjoyed this wee post and do leave a comment.

in stitches,

Amanda

 

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