2017 Flashback - Suit Jackets Galore Part 1

5.13.2018

Confession - I have always loved suits.  Back in high school I had a black pinstriped pantsuit with a double breasted jacket that was my pride and joy.  It was a cheap ass polyester blend purchased at *Fashion Bug but I felt like a million bucks in it.  One year I wore it to school with on Halloween with heels and told people I was a lady mobster.  No one was charmed by my "creativity" or fashion sense. However this was one of two instances that my highly insecure self said...not outloud but internally.... "Fuck you guys, I look good in this suit." (The other time was when a boy I'd known for years  disparagingly said I was the only girl he knew that had sideburns. That time I internally said, "Fuck you I have great hair.)
All of this is a roundabout way of saying that in the summer of 2017 I blocked out about a month and a half to make a couple of suit jackets.  During the previous winter I'd been constantly annoyed about not having enough dressy options that worked with the weather. I didn't sew anything then for some reason, probably distracted by cake.  Instead I just bought several new pieces of wool while cackling with glee. Oh wool, you complete me. Let's go get brunch. Honestly though, who wouldn't fall in love with this plaid? Only a monster.....or maybe someone who looks terrible in green. I'll cut you a little slack if that's the case.
You guys know how I feel about plaid, we're soul mates. Also it's super hard to even find a predominately green plaid. As soon as I saw this on the Mood website I was practically screaming, "TAKE MY MONEY! I NEED THIS IN MY LIFE!" Didn't want this one to languish in the stash for a few years, so sewing it up was priority number 1. One needs all the green or red garments they can get for Christmas season theme dressing. Aka the best season of the year because everyone wears my favorite colors.
For once my existing pattern stash was rummaged through for a suitable pattern. Memory fails me but I think I bought Simplicity 1207 on a whim during one of my random Etsy pattern browsing bindges. Nothing de-stresses me like staring at new patterns.  That shoulder detail intrigued was very intriguing. I didn't realize it was a pocket until looking at the pattern pieces.  Sure the lady on the left has a handkerchief in hers but sometimes I'm oblivious. Probably distracted by the shoes the lady in red has on. Would buy! **Can I get Royal Vintage shoes on the phone and make this happen?  Also if you're wondering why the pattern number is different on this picture it's because Simplicity re-released the pattern about a month after I completed my jacket.  I haven't bought the new version check if the patterns have been tweaked to make them easier to sew.  Even so it is nice to be able say, "If you want to make this pattern you can easily get a copy."
Anyway, back to the yoke detail! Sewing it together was one of the most interesting construction processes I've had in awhile. It's a good thing I did have the original instructions to refer to because it still made me go......huh? Here's a photo I took mid sewing process to document the yoke area. What you see here is the back on the left with the yoke/back half of the pocket bag attached at the shoulders. On the right is the front with the back yoke area attached. The fronts have the other half of the pocket bag sewn in already. They're in lining fabric and you top-stitch the edge of the pocket before getting to this point.
To put these two pieces together press the seam allowance under on the "band" portion of the front. Then you lay it on top of the back and top-stitch everything into place. Pretty sure the pattern drafter wasn't thinking, "And maybe some crazy person will do this on plaid. That will be fun!" He was probably thinking the opposite. Of course I was that crazy person and was already past the point of no return.  Time for a walking foot, lots of pins and maybe a burnt sacrifice to the sewing goddess.  Though I like to think of her as a cousin of Jobu from "Major League" and she really just wants some alcohol. P.S. "Jesus, I like him very much, but he no help with curve ball."
As you can kind of see in this poorly lit photo, it worked! Bless whichever relative gave me the anal retentive fabric cutting genes.  All....The...Plaids....WILL...Match. Then months later you can smile smugly into your camera about how awesome your yoke plaids match.

The other detail to talk about is the buttons. You might have noticed that my version has 2 instead of 1 like on the pattern illustration.  Well when I muslined this up it seemed like the button was way too low to keep all of the jacket in place. The upper portion was gaping a bit in a non flattering way.  If I had to guess my low bust point might be to blame. Lurking down low and pushing everything about with abandon. Solution, more buttons!  I added another button 4.5" above the original button location. After wearing the jacket once I also added a snap to keep the bottom half in place. Gotta keep all those plaid lines in place.


Pattern
Simplicity 1207.  Since making my version this pattern was re-released by the company as Simplicity 8461.

Fabrics used
Wool plaid from Mood fabrics, black bemberg from Emmaonesock

Pattern changes/alterations
1. Graded pattern up from 34" bust to 36" bust.
2. Added 1/2" ease to the waist and hip.
3. 1/2 forward shoulder adjustment.
4. Added another button to the CF.

Confessions/Advice
The plaid matching might be on point, but on the other end of the spectrum we have the back of this jacket.  I had no idea this suit was so puffy there until taking these photos. Checked the pattern and yes I did neglect to put in my normal sway back adjustment.  Oops.  At least I've got plenty of ease to move around.


Husband Comment
"It has a lot of real estate for pins. Also the pattern illustration looks like an air hostess. Not you though."

My Final Thoughts
One good thing about blogging months after completing a project is that you know how successful of a wardrobe item it is.  I wore this one as often as possible from December to April. In fact I was always pissed if I'd worn it to church last week and didn't want to repeat my outfit.  I will admit that the color had a lot to do with that.  Pros for the actual design is that it's very comfortable and warm thanks to the wool and full lining. I do like the pocket yoke detail and it makes me think I need to pick up a pair of dress clips.  Simplicity 1207 isn't a pattern that I'm planning on sewing again, but I'm 100% happy that I did make one up.
During the summer of 2017 I made two other jackets, one successful, one that's a bit of a mess. It may be salvageable if I rip out the lining and maybe replace a collar.  Of course I hate taking apart finished garments so that one may never see the light of day. You'll definitely see the one that worked out even though it's a pattern repeat. Until then buy plaid and cake. I already am.

* Don't know how prevalent the Fashion Bug chain was but it was slightly better quality than Walmart but not as good as Macy's. Anyway the price was right so my Mom let us do a lot of our High School wardrobe shopping there.

** I happen to wearing the Royal Vintage Marilyn pumps in these photos and I'd give them a thumbs up.

Meanwhile on another blog....

5.11.2018

When one of your virtual sewing besties asks if you can write a guest post you don't say no! Which is why I'm over on the Sewicalist blog today. Gillian, of Crafting a Rainbow, asked if I'd like to talk about my transition to wearing vintage styles full time.  We used a bunch of old Me Made May photos as reference points so you get to have a fun look back at my old makes.

I didn't put this one in the blog post.....but it makes me laugh like an idiot every time.

This post ended up being a companion piece to my last post about turning 40. Writing them at the same time might have something to do with it.  I wanted to keep the birthday post light and fun, just a look at various wardrobe mishaps over the years.  My transition to vintage post is more about why I made the change. It's by no means dark, but I did go into some of the internal changes that lead to my choice to be a full time vintage lady.  To read that post just click on this little linky right here.

I am doing Me Made May this year over on Instagram. Do people do blog roundups of that sort of thing anymore? You can find me over there under knitnbee if you wanna see what makes I keep pulling out of the closet. *cough McCall's 4264 cough*

Turning 40 - A Review

4.23.2018

Hey guess what?  It's officially my 40th birthday day!   I've been celebrating all month because a "birthday month" is a thing and I'm secretly dramatic. Or maybe that's not a secret. Does a not dramatic person wear a hat like this?   No girl, they probably don't wear hats at all....poor hat-less bastards.
It's been awhile since we had a purely silly blog post, what with me not actually blogging and all.  I thought this might be a fun way to commemorate my 40th birthday. Also my sewing mojo has taken a mini-vacation leaving me with lots of time to do other stuff.  Like write random blog posts, search for reasonably priced bakelite and eat too much chocolate.  (Desmond's leftover Easter candy is in peril.) So let's have some fun with my edited review temple below. Don't worry, there's still a husband comment.

Pattern   Age
The big 40. Officially middle aged? Or halfway to becoming my true self? Basically a crotchety old lady who knits, eats cookies and only watches PBS dramas of Jane Austen novels. (We're just going to pretend my real true self isn't a "V" lizard human intent on using the rest of you for fuel.)  Honestly I'm just relieved to be back at an age that I can remember.  Try remembering that you're 37 for a year. It's impossible.

Fabrics used  Influences
This 40 year old self is brought to you by... avoiding social interactions to read too many books. Being raised on so many old movies that my teenage crushes were Clark Gable, Charlton Heston and Yul Brynner. (That is not a joke) Copious ingestion of cake, cookies and chocolate bars. And finally filling my brain with so many song lyrics that I spontaneously start singing something 95% of the time. My family loooooves this.  (No they don't.)

Changes/alterations
Baby Heather.  I'm just giving you this one to show that I arrived on this planet with more hair than was necessary. Now we're fast forwarding to where I started dressing myself and it's scary.

Child who wore too many things her grandmother bought at "Cow Town"  Wait, I'm just now finding out there's a rodeo there?  Shit, I would have enjoyed a rodeo more than factory seconds bought on the cheap.

That stage where I was too big to fit into kids clothing but for some reason didn't fit into teenager clothing?  All I remember is having to buy clothing from the middle aged ladies department. You make a lot of friends in middle school that way. (No you don't.)

The early 90's vest phase.  I don't remember having a vest phase but I just counted 4 different vest outfits section of the photo album. And that's the only the outfits my Mother thought to take a picture of.  Confession - I've been thinking about sewing a vest for about 4 months now. Would this be a vest reboot?

Mid 90's ill advised flannel shirt semi grunge phase.  Nothing like totally obscuring your waist so you look 20lbs heavier.

Late 90's phase when I wore khakis and T-shirt from surf shops. I have no idea why this happened. I hate the beach and am very unathletic.  Was this just a late 90's trend? You can see my friend Steve's outfit is equally bland so maybe it was. Oh and we used to be somewhat tan.  We're still friends but we don't tan. We just text each other about how much we hate the sun.... exactly 2 weeks ago. (We both decided to clean our houses instead. Just call us the life of the party!)

Early Aughts "I have to train people older than me for a living so I buy everything from J Crew" phase. That one explains itself.

Late Aughts "I'm cold all the time but can afford to buy a lot of cashmere turtlenecks" phase. This is when I met Mr. B.

2012 - Post Desmond and when I started sewing again.


2018 - Gasp the Present!

Confessions/Advice  Pros/Cons
Pros of being 40
- I used to be really concerned about "What Other People Thought!" in my younger years.  Now I don't give a damn.  It's really wonderful and freeing.

- On a related note my decision to become the local eccentric is working out really well.  I've always been a weird lone wolf on the edges of society.  Now I'm also well dressed and confidently wearing a killer hat while doing my own thing.  Most people seem to like it.
Cons of being 40
- I spend a fair amount of time on Youtube looking for stretches to fix various muscle knots. Have I been using my body incorrectly for 40 years?  The answer is yes. Oh and I take a lot of supplements now and fiber.  All of you in your 20's and 30's enjoy not worrying about your fiber intake while you can.

- I have turned into that adult who goes, "OH MY GOD, YOU'VE GOTTEN SO BIG!"  God I hated that person when I was a kid.  Also things are "too sweet" or "too rich" now.  And I wear leopard print which I swore never to do.  Oh well, I'm owning it now.  Kids grow up too fast, those marshmallow peeps are way too sweet and leopard print rules. Soft kitty, round kitty, little pile of fluff.

Husband Family Comments
Husband - "I noticed that you're a lot hotter than many of the 40 year olds I know."

Son - "I don't really care, Carver's Mom is way older than you." (Who's Carver? Husband Steve says he's one of Desmond's classmates.  Really? the only one I can remember is Sal because his grandfather looks like, and I quote Des -"One of those rich guys who look poor." Me - "Do you mean stereotypical Italian movie mobsters?"  Des- "YES!")

Froggie - "I do hope you're still sharing the chocolate cake."

My Final Thoughts
I'd like to thank my mother for her "young face" genes. She used to win us prizes at the "guess my age" attraction at the fair every time. Also my younger self for starting to use sunscreen in her early 20's.  Oh and my vampire eyes that keep me from going out in the sun period.  HISSS, IT BURNS! Where is my sun hat and two pairs of sunglasses!? (Also not a joke.)

Other than my face vanity I'm pretty happy with this whole getting older thing. Younger me spent a lot of time trying to be something I'm not. A socially normal person. And no one bought it because it's obvious that I'm not that.  As a semi-close relative told me in 2012, "Well you've always been odd, but not in a bad way."  I'm a lot happier now that I've embraced my oddness with as much bright colors and hats as possible.

I think that's enough introspection for one day. Let's all sit down have some cake and talk about summer sewing plans. :)

2017 Flashback - I might be too pale for this dress

4.12.2018

Is there an expiration date on unblogged garments? It's not like any of you live near me and are thinking, "God Heather, I've seen you wear that dress for 3 months. You're blogging about it now?  As far as you all know this dress never existed until now.  Well if you've forgotten about any instagram progress posts in the summer of 2017.  I'll just get out my "Men in Black" light stick forgetting thing and take care of those memories. Ha! Now let me tell you all about my "new dress" the Dragnor pattern from "How to do Fashion."
Come to think of it I should have waited until it was summer and passed this off as a fresh new make. Ta Da, my hair is mysteriously less gray around the temples for one blog post. What is my secret! Witchy trickery of course. Definitely not living through 3 consecutive traumatic events that happened one after another in a space of 3 weeks. *insert crazed laughter*  (Seriously though the 3rd quarter of my 2017 was a shit show which I can't really talk about since none of the events happened directly to me or my husband/kid.  But I was only 1 degree removed so there was plenty of feelings and stress to drive me more than a little crazy. But enough about real life stuff that's a bummer, let's talk about sewing.)
So back in 2017 I'd been eyeing the How to do fashion site for a bit.  Nanna's style is similar to my own and I always like trying new pattern brands to see what they're like.  I chose to go with the Dragnor pattern because it looked like a good match for some vintage border print in the stash.  See, look at the pretty fruity border!
I purchased the PDF version and had a positive experience with it.   The layout of all the pattern tiles was nice and clear and I didn't have any trouble getting the pieces to fit together.  As is my habit I traced a copy of the pattern onto trace paper and made my fitting changes on that version. One thing to note is that the sewing instructions are not in the PDF download.  You need to go back to the website and download another PDF.  The link to the instructions is clearly marked in the pattern purchasing area, just thought I'd mention it.  The dress itself was easy to put together.  I like the fact that the bodice comes with a full lining, so you don't have to worry about neckline and armhole facings flipping around.  There's also a nice amount of bra coverage for those of us who prefer not to wear strapless bras. (I'm definitely in this camp because strapless bras just end up at my waist.)
Overall this was a fun sew and I was excited to put this dress on......only to find it looked a lot better on the hanger than on me.  Ru Ro Reorge. What went wrong?

- Maybe I'm too pale for this much white background.  I hear some of you saying, "Don't worry Heather, you just need to wear this in the summer when you have more color." Well these pictures were taken at the end of summer sooooo this is my summer color.  My aversion to the sun is good for the face wrinkle situation, but maybe not for wearing white.

- Maybe I got the proportions off a bit.  Thanks to my low bust point the inset area had to be reduced 1" in width. The skirt length also might be a bit too long.

- Maybe a waist inset is not the best design feature on my body.  Kind of highlights the whole pear shaped situation.
To be honest I'm not entirely sure why this is a bit of a miss. Maybe you guys can weigh in.

Pattern
Dragnor from How to do Fashion. I used the non draped neckline for my version.

Fabrics used
Vintage cotton border print bought from Etsy a number of years ago.

Pattern changes/alterations
1. Raised the front and back necklines about .5"
2. Made standard .5" forward shoulder adjustment.
3. Took .25" off strap height on both the front and back.
4. Added 1" of length to top of front bodice and removed 1" of length from waist inset.

Confessions/Advice
- I did try to fully line the entire dress for opacity but that created too much volume in the skirt area. The finished garment only has a lined bodice.

- Despite taking in the shoulder straps they still feel too long.

- I might have enjoyed this angry outtake so much that it became my FB profile pic until this month. Oh and strangers will DM you and ask why you're using such an unflattering picture as your profile. (For Irony, Duh!)

Husband Comment
"Red and white, first aid colors. You could be a nurse, a fruity nurse."

My Final Thoughts
Long story short, great pattern. My execution, not so much.  So do any of you have thoughts on how to rework this dress? The fabric is so pretty and I don't want it to go to waste. I'd be ever so thankful for you recommendations.

It's an Easter Miracle

4.01.2018

This could be an Easter miracle or more of a Dr. Frankenstein hooking up a corpse to lighting sort of situation.  Either way you slice it, the blog is ALIVE! ALIVE I TELL YOU!!!!! *cue manic laughter*
Sooooo how's everybody been?  Over here it's been snowing....every week. On the one hand I've gotten a few extra sewing days in. On the other I'm all, "I'm getting to old for this shit" every time my eye falls on the camera tripod. Unless you've got a winter coat to model who wants to go saddle up their team of huskies to go get some blog photos?  (Confession, if I did have a team of huskies I would 100% do a photo shoot with them. It would be a disaster, but probably hilarious.)

Anywooo, today it wasn't snowing or torrential raining and I thought, "Hey I've got myself all made up. Might as well take some blog photos." Looking around I saw that my son was distracted with his new Easter Shark* and my husband was happily eating his easter chocolate. I grabbed the tripod and ran out of the house before they could grab me and demand more food. FREEEDOM!   Well freedom to squint into the sun while dog walkers at the park wonder what the hell I'm doing. (BTW - One of them did tell me my outfit was fantastic.)
This wasn't what I'd planned to wear for Easter. There's a nice blue/white floral rayon number all ready to go for a festive Spring celebration....except it doesn't feel like Spring yet.  After sticking my head out the door I said, "NOPE, not suffering for fashion today....other than my shoe choice. Let's pull out the wool." And low, I clothed myself of in the fleece of a sheep and was happy. But how did I get here you might ask? Oh, oh, oh, I'll tell you.

At the beginning of the month I went on a pattern buying bender since it's only way to get myself excited about sewing up fabric that's as old as my son. Just give me something new and shiny!   As usual Etsy came through and hooked me up with a new Hollywood Pattern. Bam!
All winter I'd been staring at this glen plaid and thinking, "That would look nice in a suit jacket with some pleather. But what pattern would work?" Nothing really came to mind even though there are a healthy number of suit patterns in my stash.  But when I first clapped eyes on Hollywood 989 I knew it would be perfect.
The illustration doesn't show a version with contrast fabrics even though the construction makes it easy to add them. The collar is inserted in similar to a button down shirt collar, so you don't have to worry about piecing a facing on the inside.  The pocket flaps are only decorative, no worrying about sewing bias bound pockets in pleather.  I also decided to do the undersleeves in pleather so there wasn't a nasty plaid mismatch on the back sleeve seam.  There's some extra ease in the elbow area so it was impossible to match the two pieces across the seam.
One other interesting design element is that the jacket does not have a side seam in the normal place.  The front piece wraps around to where the back bodice dart might be positioned. A fish eye dart is used to shape the side seam instead. But you'll have to take my word for it because my plaid matching is obscuring all vertical seams.  Thank god for that CB seam because that make sway back adjustments even easier. (Looks like I need to take out a bit more for the sway back looking at these pics. Darn curvy backside.)

Pattern
Hollywood 989 - Jacket only.  Probably should grade up the skirt because a one with an inverted pleat would be a nice addition to the wardrobe.

Fabrics used
Plaid wool with a bit of a boucle texture/medium weight pleather. Both of these are long stashed Emmaonesock purchases.  The cobalt lining is also from the stash, originally from Gorgeous Fabrics.  In fact even the interfacing, shoulder pads and buttons are stash. A 100% stash project!

Pattern changes/alterations
1. Graded the pattern up to a 36" bust.
2. Standard for me forward shoulder adjustment of 1/2" to shoulder and sleeve cap
3. Decreased sleeve cap height 1/2".
4. 1/2" extra ease added to waist and hip for my pear shape.
5. 1/4" sway back adjustment.
6. Took 1/2" out of the center back seam at the waist.

Confessions/Advice
- No tricky construction issues on this one if you're an old hat at jackets.  See what I did there, old hat. *wink, wink*
- Desmond convinced me on using these buttons that were in the stash.  I was going to self cover some buttons with pleather instead.  After mocking one of those up I admitted that Desmond's pick looked better. More Sparkle!

Husband Comment
Him - "Oh it's got shiny parts. It's like a hybrid of a leather jacket and hounds tooth." 
Me - "It's plaid, not houndstooth."
Him - "Are you sure?"
Me - "YEESS. Who has a fashion design degree around here?"
Him - "Hmmmm, well the plaid is houndstoothy."
 
My Final Thoughts
This baby turned out just like it looked in my head.  I've also worn it all day and wore like a dream. So warm and comfy. This patterns is going in the "would make again" pile.
My sewing machine has been humming all winter so there are plenty of garments I could show you.  But will I?  Maybe Frankenstein's monster could ghost write for me. His grasp of English is probably better.  Until then enjoy your chocolate haul!

*Easter Shark patent pending. It's a real thing and not something I just made up for my shark obsessed 7 year old.  The Easter shark brings steaks, chocolate, and a stuffed shark for you to hug. He's awesome for all ages.

Bandwagon Sewing - Simplicity 1554

10.09.2017

Hello everyone, hope you are enjoying the beginning of Fall. Or as I call it about these parts, "Just die already summer."  Oh course summer is aware it almost succeeded in breaking me this year and is sticking around trying to finish the job. Not gonna work summer, all my Halloween window clings are elevating my mood. I'm also on a sugar high from bite sized Halloween candies. (A 10 pound bag will last me till Halloween proper...right? God, when will I learn never to break the candy bag seal.)

The small upside of it being 85 and disgustingly humid is that I got photos of all the summer sewing you know nothing about. Let me quantify that, photos of all the summer garments.  Not all my summer sewing was seasonally appropriate. Two fully lined wool jackets and one unlined wool blouse/jacket were also completed during the season of too much sun.  One lesson I have learned is that Christmas garment sewing (for yourself) doesn't get done if you wait till the 4th quarter.  This year my closest has more red/green/black garments for my Christmas theme dressing needs. I can barely wait!

Let's put a pin in the merits of wool and roll the clock back to June to some of the last bit of stash busting that happened this summer. (Hazards of working at a fabric store.) May I present Simplicity 1554, my second favorite blouse pattern.
OK so usually I buy vintage patterns just because of the look of the fashion illustration or the design details.  I've rarely seen a completed garment on someone else and then went to look for a copy of the pattern. However this blouse kept popping up on Instagram on other vintage ladies accounts.  They'd mention the pattern number and I'd look it up every time. After about the 3rd of 4th time it was obvious I'd better just buy the damn thing already.
This one is labeled "Simple to make" which is mostly true. I'd guess that making bound buttonholes wasn't as big of a deal in the 40's if it was your only option.  The style is easy to fit due to the kimono sleeve and the waist area not being especially fitted. There are two tucks in the back waist mostly to reduce bulk in the hip area.

The pattern gives you a variety of neckline options but they all share the same shirred detail at the shoulder.  This particular design element will join the category of button buttonholes in that it's fiddly AF to make, but you're happy to have done it afterwards.  The pattern comes with a stay piece for the gathered area. You have to hem the stay piece, run 5 parallel lines of gathering on  the shoulder of the blouse, tie off the gathers, then hand stitch the stay piece on the wrong side of the blouse to reinforce everything.  The thought, "why am I doing this?" ran through my head more than once.
However current me is pretty pleased about this picture. Gathers and a dragonfly brooch? Sweeet.

The rest of the construction is straight forward if you've had prior shirt making experience.  The collar on version 1 has no stand, so you just sandwich it in the facings and call it done.  All the hems are rolled, which you can do by hand or machine.

Pattern 
Simplicity 1554 -View 1.


Fabrics used
Polka dot stretch cotton from Gertie's etsy store.  That glorious summer in 2013 when she sold yardage from NY and I bought soooo much fabric and wish I'd bought even more.  This may be the last piece from that stash building hull.

Pattern changes/alterations
1. Graded up the pattern to a 36" bust.
2. Put in standard 1/2" forward shoulder adjustment.

Confessions/Advice
Those of you who follow me on Instagram may remember that I completed all the bound buttonholes on the front only to discover they were not evenly spaced.  I had to cut a new front and start from scratch. Why do these things always happen with bound buttonholes? Pretty sure someone cursed me for stealing their bite sized candy bar.

Husband Comment
"More polka dots for my sours!"  (He is "sweets", I am "sours" and as they say, the shoe fits.)

My Final Thoughts
This blouse was my most worn make of the summer.  While it didn't knock McCall's 4265 out of the top blouse spot, I keep wishing a black windowpane plaid version would spontaneously appear in my closet.  The kimono sleeves and loose fit made it great for all but the hottest weather. Most of the time I paired it with this black circle skirt, but it also looks nice with an A-line skirt of pants.  Overall I'd highly recommend getting your hands on a copy of Simplicity 1554 if you're looking for a good wardrobe builder.
I've got two more summer dresses to show you....hopefully before December. Maybe frog can hide all my electronic devices until the blogging is caught up. Bad bloggers don't get match 3 games or 10 pound bag of Halloween candy.

When Ebay closes a door, Etsy opens a window - Hollywood 1411

8.04.2017

I'm sure you'll all agree with me that spending a quarter of your feel time searching the internet for new sewing patterns is perfectly normal. Just something we seamstress's do to relax and is in no way tied to us being pattern addicts. Thrill of the hunt? Nonsense!  I just need to use up all that fabric I have in the bedroom. Anyway, now that we've got that out of the way let me tell you my tale of the pattern that almost got away.
One day I was checking my ebay saved search results for Hollywood patterns. (A perfectly normal thing to do and not something an addict might set up to get their daily hit of vintage.)  I was delighted to see a new to me design in Hollywood 1411.
Did some pattern drafter of long ago design this exactly for me?  They combined all of my favorite things, shirt dresses, scalloped necklines, and pockets. Oh My!  This pattern had to BE MINE! So I bid on that puppy and happily planned what fabrics and buttons to use.

Then something happened....I just don't remember what.  Near the end of auction I should have been monitoring the bids like an addict a serious seamstress making sure to close the deal.  Guess I had to parent or maybe sleep? Curse you real life for interfering with my sewing acquisitions! Anyway someone else won the pattern with a modest bid and I was weeping into my pillow kind of bummed.
A month later I was still simmering with suppressed anger sad about loosing out on this pattern and decided to do a pattern number search for it on both Ebay and Etsy.  Because I'm not in anyway an addict, I just had the fabric ready to go!   Sadly, but not unexpectedly the searches did not return any results for my lost lovely.  With a heavy sigh I thought, "Well might as well browse Etsy while I'm here. I'll just put in a general Hollywood patterns search."  And yes my friends while I just browsing pages on Etsy this pattern appeared like a mirage in the desert. I blinked in disbelief for about 10 seconds and then pounced on that pattern like a lion upon a gazelle.  Sure that sounds like the phrasing of a pattern addict but.....I'm fine, totally fine.  I may have huffed the pattern when it arrived in my mailbox but that's not out of the ordinary behavior for anyone. Right.. Right?  OK I might have a problem but I can stop when ever I want. (Pay no attention to the open ebay tabs currently on my computer.)
Well my pattern hoarding tendencies paid off in this case because this dress is everything I'd hoped it would be. How could a shirt dress with scallop details and pockets not be?


Pattern
Hollywood 1411

Fabrics used
Dress weight floral cotton from Emmaonesock.com. (Think we have this in stock still)

Pattern changes/alterations
1. Graded up the pattern from a size 34 bust.  I was able to do the cheater way of adding more ease to the side seams on most of the pattern pieces.  The front skirt was graded in the proper manner because of the scalloped pocket openings.

2. Standard .5" forward shoulder adjustment.

3. Standard dropping of bust dart about 1.5".  The waist tucks were also shortened an 1".

4. Had a little extra fabric floating around in the shoulder area so I pinched it out by making a .25" fold in the shoulder.

Confessions/Advice
Advice - I've noticed that a few of my 40's patterns like to do this thing where the belt has either a curved or pointed edge that sticks out.  Annoyed by this I finally sewed a little snap to the back side to keep the belt in place.

Confessions - Usually I'm pretty good about remembering to put interfacing on cut on facings. For some reason it slipped my mind until finishing up most of the sewing.  I decided to to skip the interfacing all together but it did make sewing buttonholes a complete nightmare.
Otherwise I had one of those really enjoyable sewing experiences that kind of ruin you for other projects.  All I can think of is making the bodice with the set in sleeves for Fall. If I had any suitable fabric for it in that stash I'd be sewing that right now.


Husband Comment
"Oooo that neckline is really nice!" - This one met with approval from both male parties in the house


My Final Thoughts
100% sure I'll be sewing this pattern again and not just the alternate view. The neckline depth is perfect, keeping you cool while not flashing too much cleavage. There's plenty of room for a full range of movement with the kimono sleeves and the A-line skirt. This one is already in the section of the closest that gets worn every week. I could definitely do with another!

P.S. - I may enjoy accessorizing but something the weather does not cooperate.  Curse you hat snatching wind!

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