Monday, June 6, 2011

Remaking '50's

I just love vintage clothes - they are so cute and the nice thing is that they are still practical to wear everyday...

...if you use the right pattern.

I made this dress a couple years ago, and loved it because it was so simple.

But I soon realized it wasn't the "perfect" dress because it had some major issues. The dress was a wrap dress, so there was a "hole" for the neck, and then the front piece buttoned in the back, and the back went over that and closed in the front. The front layer was very narrow, while the back was very full, so when the wind hit the wrong way, the back layer sort of disappeared:

Under the arm often gapped and left no under-arm coverage, since it was a wrap dress:

And the neckline was very wide, so one could fit their head through it, but that also meant that it gapped in the front whenever you moved your arms:

As you might have guessed, I barely wore that dress because of the issues. So this past week I decided to re-make it to be more practical. 

This isn't a '50's pattern, but I used the same skirt pattern as the first dress to make it look a bit more '50's.

The pattern needed a few adjustments - as I said, I used a wider skirt pattern, and I added a front modesty panel to cover up the v-neck. I also didn't want a zipper down the back, as the pattern said, so I put it in on the side instead.

Side zipper

The front is pleated and criss-crosses into a v-neck.

I also made a crinoline out of an old poodle-skirt girls' pattern that I've had since I was 6. :) It needed a lot of adjusting, but worked out fine. There is a ruffle of tulle to help it poof a little, and fishing line alone the seam to help it keep shape.


Much more practical and cuter in my opinion too! :) Never throw out a dress - just remake it!
Thanks for stopping by!


  1. Oh Tara you look so cute in that dress! I have never dressed up 50's style before but it looks like a fun time period!

    PS We are planning a trip up near you all at the end of the month, so make sure you all are not to busy!!!!

  2. The last picture is soooo fun! :D You did a FABULOUS job remaking it. *nods*

  3. You are a absolute genius Tara! ;) Love the dress! It's SO cute! (and I love your new hair cut too!)

    Great job on the remake! I really need to remake a few dresses and skirts in my closet. I may just do that this summer in my spare time. (hahaha)

    P.S. I got your letter and I'll respond when things slow down around here!

  4. Esther - It IS a fun time period! Now to find some comfy heels (if there is such a thing) to go with the dress! :) *does a little happy dance* YAY!!! You just made my day! Can't wait to see you! Love you lots!!

    Lenna - Thanks, girl! Doing retro poses are really fun *nods back*

    RJ - Aww, you're too kind! :) "Your spare time".... haha... and when is that, may I ask?!? Will look forward to the letter! *hugs*

  5. I just saw this dress on Kathryn's blog, but I'm glad you have more pictures. :-) Very cute! Have you worn it much yet? This pattern is so much more comfortable!!

    I had a sad incident with my blue dress like this. We were out in the sun all day, so I put on sunscreen, and it stained the dress!! Grrr! :-( I did need a work dress, but can't say my plan was to ruin one of my favorite dresses in order to have one! :-(

  6. You did a great job, as usual! I'm quite envious of your petticoat... guess I'll have to make myself one. Can you convert my wrap into this dress?? :-)

  7. Tara...this is ridiculously cute. Nice work. =] I love those little yellow flowers on the fabric!

  8. Hi Lily! I've worn it twice so far, but plan to wear it a lot this summer. It is way more comfortable then I thought it would be! :) Aww, that is too bad that your dress got stained. What a pity!

    Kathryn - sure... once I finish all my other small projects... make a few historical gowns... etc. :)

    Kristen - Thanks! I love the flowers too, it's a great print! It was really nice to find it in the clearance section of the fabric store (yes!).

  9. I really like the dress. What pattern is it so I can get it. Let me know on my blog and do follow me!

  10. Savories of Life - The pattern is Simplicity 3774. It's out of print, but you might be able to find some copies from private sellers.

  11. ME LOVES THE BOTTOM DRESS! Can. I. Have. It. Like. Now. :) lol



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