The Making of a Dress…

It was a mission, I’m not going to lie. My Auntie Sue gave me a 1951 Vogue pattern for an evening dress -turns out that patterns made in the Fifties don’t have a whole lot of printing on them…The instructions are a little presumptive too; like you’re Coco Chanel and this is something you’d do in your lunch hour whilst having a break from the typing pool.

But, after about 3 weeks of working away in the evening, it got done -and bloody chuffed I am with it too. I wore it to the Saffron Walden Rugby Club Ball on Saturday night, and aside from a slightly Marilyn Monroe moment when a gas heater was turned on, stood up to an evening of dancing well.

Would I do it again? You bet, but I’ve learned a few valuable lessons about vintage patterns:

1: Never assume the sizing is correct. Get someone to measure you, and before you sew, pin the pieces and see if they fit;
2: Always leave enough time to complete the task in small chunks -this isn’t the Great British Sewing Bee, and if like me you have 2 kids, you have to work when they are in bed;
3: Bodging is ok -where patterns assume you know how something works and you think you can make it work better, do it. It’s okay to go off script, just tack and check before you sew;

Do you want to have a go at this pattern? I’m happy to post it on, just e-mail me jencrumpukyahoocom or find me on Facebook @TheOtherMrsBeaton


2 Comments Add yours

  1. Donna Keene says:

    Amazing well done! I ve started small with a dress for my baby i applaud you for this!! But i'll decline the pattern. Very kind of you to pass it on…will upload pic of my dress later this wk on my blog would love you to visit it
    Donna x


  2. Jen Beaton says:

    Thanks Donna -I'll check out your blog too…It's great to know someone else is out there shouting at patterns!! Best of luck, Jenxx


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