It maybe was a foolish decision to sign up for Lucky Lucille’s Sewing for Victory sew-along. But, I already knew that I needed a new dress for my friend’s wedding in April (hey–I’m not going to make the bridesmaids something new and then not make something new for me!) for which I have given myself permission to buy fabric. And, I do love the 40s, so it seemed like a good time to combine a few goals into one sew-along.
And, if I don’t get all my winter sewing done–no biggie!
Yep, feeling pretty chill over here.
The first step in my process was to check out my 1940s sewing patterns in my stash. The results were. . . uninspiring. I have one pattern and it was not at all what I was going for. (I don’t have a large vintage pattern stash like some of you lucky gals.)
So, I next consulted the Google which led me to some lovely lady’s Pinterest page of 1940s inspiration. Thanks Pinterest Lady for doing my work for me! Especially since I found The Dress that I knew I needed to make.
It’s an Orla Kiely, whom I had never heard of before. But since finding this dress, it seems that her name is everywhere. I don’t pay attention to designers because I just can’t be bothered to care. So, the fact that I’ve noticed her name really means something.
I couldn’t trace the picture back to its roots (when I clicked on the Pinterest link, it led me to an empty page), but I did find a similar dress (just a different fabric) here. Since this is a new dress, I began to wonder if it really was 40s inspired. I mean, it looks 40s, don’t you think? But, I really wanted proof, so I started looking at actual 40s patterns to find similarities. I found these two:
I know this one (above) isn’t exactly what I’m doing, but what are those? Darts with gathers??? I’m intrigued!
This one has a similar yoke and gathers thing going on.
Really, the only part of the dress that I couldn’t find in an actual 40s pattern is the collar. But the collar is my favorite part. And since I’m not really a strictly vintage girl, it’s okay to me if it’s not entirely “authentic.”
Somewhere in the middle of all this, I remembered a chest in our sitting room that contains tons of family pictures from my grandmother’s house. I went a-digging and found some really adorable pictures.
My only complaint is that it’s really hard to see the details on any of these dresses. I think that if I were to try to copy any of them, I’d do either the gingham suit (for fall/winter) or the shirt dress seems very similar to the one I made last summer.
After all that, I still felt very strongly about the Orla Kiely dress. So, how am I going to make it? Well, that’s a good question. . .
I’m thinking that I’ll start with Simplicity 1801. I’ll modify the front yoke to match the OK dress. I’ll need to either draft new sleeves, or modify the existing ones. And I’ll add a collar. This is part that really baffles me. How do I do that collar??? What do you think? Right now I’m pondering attaching it like I did the neckband/bow on New Look 6107. Perhaps I could even add a little bow at the neckline instead of wearing a tie around the waist. I’m also considering converting the skirt gathers into pleats.
Now for the fun part: fabric! These are the two I’ve picked so far (I know I mentioned before that I wanted emerald green. I still do, but I can’t find it anywhere!):
They’re both cotton voile. I originally was leaning toward the top one, but now I really love the colors in the second. Hmmm. . .
All this means that I have an enormous lot of work to do in the next few weeks. Wish me luck!