Friday, July 12, 2019

A 50s Full Skirted Slip

For my sheer dresses I do not line them. Why? Well to be honest its takes time and money and to make a new slip for every dress I so make is silly when they can all share one. That is how this piece was created. I wanted to make a slip, a full skirted one, for my sheer 50s dresses to be interchangeable with all my dresses if need be. The pattern for this one was a vintage 50s slip pattern for a princess slip but it was not one for a full skirt. So, I used the bodice of the slip and added a full circle skirt to it to make it work for me.

I chose a light blue taffeta because I liked the texture, it had some good body, a fun rustling sound, and the light blue? Well, they did not have white  . . .figures. . . To make this slip was so easy even with my alterations so I added some lace frills to it. I added the lace to the top of the neckline, the shoulder straps, and a hand appliqued bow to the skirt for fun. To the center front neckline, a little pink ribbon rose.

There is not too much to say about this piece other than it is both practical and really pretty (well I think so) and I have a feeling this is going to be a very good wardrobe addition. Actually, I can see myself making a few more of these in different colors because a good slip is so handy to have.

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Technicolor Dreams

Some dresses kind of assemble themselves in terms of patterns and fabrics coming together so well and I think that's what happened here. When I found this fabric in my local fabric store I just fell in love with it. It was so much fun! It reminded me of water colors and those amazing color films of the 50s. I guess that's where the name comes from for this dress: Technicolor Dreams.

The pattern was a vintage one from my stash and its a Vintage Vouge. I did make some alterations to this pattern to suit the length of material I had. The fabric here was kind of narrow (which I found surprising because it was not vintage material but came in a very vintage 36 inches wide . . . ). Really the only big alteration I made was to the skirt. . . I did not do the gathers but instead chose a simple circle skirt. Oh! Like the pattern for yourself?? You are in luck, Vouge re released it last I saw and you can buy your own copy.

I knew I did not want to do the skirt for two reasons - one I did not buy enough fabric to do it and two the last time I did make this pattern up with the skirt gathers it looked kind of goofy on me. Basically I did not like it on me which is a bummer because I love that detail. Other details of this dress that I really like are the little front opening buttons and the shape of the neckline. Its such a subtle shape and its so feminine. For my take on this one, I chose little light blue glass buttons with the most quite hint of gold. Since this was my second time making this pattern up, it was an easy put together and that made this a nice fun project. I don't know about you but there are times I just need an easy project!! I guess that is why I have not made up any Lutterloh makes as of late. . .. I have had a lot going on and need some easy sewing that needs no thinking (well as least very little thinking. . . . I call it therapy sewing).

Personally, I really am loving this dress and I think its just great for summer. Too bad its so darn cold though! Even the day I wore it here it was a bit chilly for it but I wanted something bright and cheerful and this just fit the bill.

With it, I chose a vintage white sweater, my 40s peep toe wedges, and a pink purchased belt for the waist. Of course, seamed stockings. Can I take a moment to point out my hair here? I think I nailed that 40s and 50s look for hair and I love how it turned out. .. So much so that I gave it an extra shot of hair spray after these pics were taken to that I would not loose it through my day. One trick I have learned to get these waves is all in the brush out. . . And practice ! Lots of practice! And hair nets too, I secure the hair in the back of my noggin with a super fine vintage hair net and for me its the best way to go. One draw back to it is that it gets caught in the necklace clasp all the time (which does get annoying after a short time). But since it helps keep my curls in place I can deal with it. I will admit my hair does not turn out this nice all the time but when it does its a nice way to start the day.

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Stocking/ Lingerie Bag Tutorial

So not too long ago I was watching a What Katie Did video about traveling with your stockings which you can watch for your self here. In this video stocking pouches really caught my attention as ways to protect your stockings while you travel. For me, I was really captivated by these little items because one they looked adorable and two I travel with my stockings often and am always on the look out for ways to protect my precious cargo - my stockings. After watching the video, I started to do some more homework about these little items because I wanted to make one for myself.
Stockings pouches were designed to protect your stockings, were small, and were made form soft materials like silk satins or rayon. Materials that were soft, feminine, and would not snag your stockings. These little pouches were large enough to hold up to 3 to five pairs, not too large, and were either round, square, rectangular, with or without pockets to hold your stockings and keep them separate if desired.
In my research, I found a couple of originals on Pinterest and doing a Google search.  Of the originals, they made use of lots of pink and cream colors and fabrics that I am sure were satin based on the sheen (fiber could have been a silk or a rayon). Some had little snaps, buttons, draw strings, or simply folded closed. Some even had initials embroidered on the front. I even found some that were sets, or they looked like sets with three bags in different sizes.
For my stocking pouch, or lingerie bag, I wanted to use only the materials in my stash as I figured I would have SOMETHING I could make decent use out of. I knew that these items were not going to take much material and I thought this would be a great way to use up some of the bits and pieces in my collection of sewing goodies. So what did I all have in my stash? Plenty of laces and a nice selection of fine cottons and silks! What luck!

With my supplies in hand, I started roughly sketching a large and a small/ medium circle. I chose two sizes to see which one I liked more or saw to me more practical (its probably going to be the big one).
Making the Lingerie Bag
 To start, I cut four large circles of a fine cream colored silk. Two circles were going to be my exterior and two my interior or actually my top layer and my bottom layer. To make the soft fine silk easier to work with, I ironed and starched it to death. There is no such thing as too much starch in my world.
Next, I stitched two circles together with a really narrow seam allowance leaving a small opening so I could turn the circle inside out.  I did that to the second set of circles as well and pressed them again really well. At this point I had two sewn circles, well pressed and starched.
Four silk circles ready to be sewn!
Do you want a frilly baggie? I kind of did for mine so choosing one sewn circle I played around with my lace selection until I was happy with what I was seeing. I did not want something too frilly nor too plain. . . .  How about no trimming at all but embroidered initials?? Once I had my circle trimmed the way I wanted it I took it and placed it on top of my other circle (the plain one) and carefully stitched it to the other circle leaving a nice large opening so I could slip my stockings in with ease. I turned my baggie inside out, pressed it once more and added silk ribbon ties to tie it closed. Overall, this was a super simple project and this can be made a couple different ways too but this is how I made mine. To top mine off, I added silk ribbon roses I made myself from some ribbon in my stash.

The first layer of trimming

My ribbon roses and leaves
And the finished product? Here it is! I think it turned out kind of cute and it works really well for traveling with stockings that need a little extra care. The silk ribbon ties help keep it closed.

Friday, June 28, 2019

Mystery Solved . . . The Case of the Bar Thingies in my Suitcase

I love my vintage alligator luggage set. I only have two pieces of what was a large set but so far these two pieces have served me well. What do I have? I have my large case and a smaller one. My bigger one holds my clothes and my little one, my personals. Now, I bet you are wondering about the mystery that was solved . . .
When I purchased and started to use my large suit case, I was miffed by the hinged bar contraption that was  covered by the little hook on curtain on the one half. I could not figure out what this was for but I knew it must have had something to due with pieces that needed to be hung up (it was a wild guess). I lived with my suitcase and its mysterious bars for years always pondering its real purpose. . .Then, I figured it out. How? By chance when I found this period Samsonite Luggage ad:
Take a look at the uppermost suit case . . .See how the top of the jacket is hung up and then the body is folded and kept in place by the bar? Yep. That's right. . .Those bar thingies were for suiting! When I studied this ad I was really excited because I love my suits (you know that) and now that I know my suit case has a super special place for suit jackets. . . .Hooray!! Its really funny how I have had this suit case for so long now and now I am just figuring this thingy out  . . . . I guess it goes to show vintage luggage is amazingly well thought out and even more so when one learns how to use it properly. It also goes to show how valuable these ads are for studying and learning. Honestly if I have never found this ad by chance those bars would have remained a mystery. Below are some shots I got playing with it. I think I can use a shorter hangar so that is something I am going to have to look out for. Until then, this works. You can see too the other smaller bar that holds the suit in and the curtain that comes down the cover the suit while in transit. How clever. Oh, the bar also swivels out for easy hanging and un hanging.

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Candy Stripes 50s Style

How fun is this dress! I mean really how fun are these funky stripes? When I found this pattern in a local antique mall awhile back I knew I wanted to make it up just like pictured with the stripes going horizontal instead of vertical. I know horizontal stripes are a little dicey fashion wise but oh well. I love how they turned out here and this dress makes me smile just looking at it on the hangar. Below, the original pattern envelope (and helper of course):

This dress was actually pretty easy to make as a whole and was a lot of fun too. There was a little fussing taking in the bodice but that was an easy fix- I added little vertical pleats to the center front. Done! The skirt pleats and gathers were a little fussy and definitely unique but totally work I think. I don't think I would have added both pleats and gathers together in one skirt but who knew! They really do work well together! I can see myself trying the skirt pattern again on a different dress. The bodice was different  and was not what I expected. the front looked like it buttoned all the way down but in fact the buttons are decorative. The dress front opens only half way, is bound with a bias facing and closes at the neck with snaps. Give it to the 50s for such a unique opening. There is a side zip in the dress as well.

Paired with this dress I chose red and white and I could have done just red or just white too of course . . .But for now I popped on my red 40s pumps, white bonnet, and white gloves. I chose a dark red purchased belt here to cinch in the waist. I am really excited to accessorize this dress this summer and maybe this winter too. This cotton is really firm and has some great body to it. The red in the stipes also makes me think this may be a great winter season dress when paired with the right sweater. But for now its a beautiful summer number.

 Here is a piece that I have had in my box for YEARS but never ever wore until now. . . .A beaded collar. I bought it so long ago simply because I liked the way it looked and was so pretty. I still think it is and that's why I chose to wear it here. I think a plain white on would have looked better but sometimes it is what it is. I still think this collar is as pretty now as when I first bought it so I know it was a good buy.

Sunday, June 23, 2019

Flora in Aqua

This blue and brown floral sheer looked so divine and I thought it would just look divine as a 50s dress. . . . Just not sure what kind until I sorted though my stash and found the perfect one. This was a New York Pattern, one that I had only seen occasionally in my pattern box and used really only once (and here it is). I loved the gathered square neck finished with a binding. It was different, feminine, and it crossed something off my list for this year - different necklines!

I followed the pattern pretty well except for the skirt, I chose my basic circle skirt pattern here so I could wear it over my crinoline for that iconic 50s shape. The skirt turned out a little shorter than I would have liked and the hem has . . . um . . .character (yeah, lets call it that . . . ).

Overall, I am really happy with it and its so pretty and great for those hot summer days. I did not line it but instead am wearing a full circle skirted slip that I will be posting about at a much later date. Like mentioned above, I wanted this to be a 50s dress with that full skirt and with some boo boos the skirt turned a little too short to be worn with the crinoline. . .so I had to go without it.

I see now my specially made lining does peek out a bit and that just means I need a shorter slip to wear underneath this number. Oh well, that's life isn't it? We can plan all we want but sometimes stuff does not quite work out like we want it too. . .

 Paired with this dress I chose to stick with whites as much as I could. A large white straw 40s hat, long white gloves, and ivory pumps. I am really excited about the earrings. These are made of little sea shells glued to a screw back earring base. These were pieces of novelty or tourist jewelry from the 30s to the late 50s and how fun are these? As for the belt, it its a purchased one that I thought just really worked well with the dress so I chose to use this one instead of making one. Honestly I am really having a ball looking for belts that I don't have to make myself. I think they add a nice touch.

Well there you have it, another 50s piece in a fun sheer floral that I hope will get some good wear this summer. I am overall pretty happy with how it turned out despite its flaws.
 Of course, when I was getting these shots it was soooo windy! I mean wow was it breezy! I actually lost my hat here in this last one and the camera still went off (timer function). Funny enough I think the picture turned out not too bad so here it is here. I guess it kind of goes with the dress because sometimes things don't turn out like you planned but they work out all right in the end anyway. That's life right?