Monday, 28 October 2013

Vintage Simplicity in Plaid

I've been trying to write this post for ages - Blogger keeps crashing - time to move to something different?


I've had this pattern a while and when the perfect fabric came along...

The pattern is Simplicity 3673, view B. I have to say, I'm in love!

It wasn't completely plain sailing, even though Simplicity patterns generally are for me. Because of my shape and the style of the pattern, I knew straight off that the bust line would be too high. My lovelies just don't sit high enough for these patterns. Fortunately some time ago (before this blog existed), I made up Butterick 6534 which also has a similar line, so I kind of mashed up the two.

I lengthened the bodice piece by an inch so it would sit better. I also added half inch length to the main skirt pieces, to fit the waist and hips better. Those darts - they were a pain! They're not quite double pointed, but still curved and for some reason I did not enjoy stitching them. The skirt lining however does not have darts. Like with my pencil skirt, I just pleated these at the top.

The pattern only lines the bodice. I've lined the whole dress. I've done this wrong though, I'm completely aware of this and realised I'd done things wrong just after. At the time I really didn't want to unpick everything. I basted the gathers in the bodice shell and lining together, then basted the skirt and the skirt lining together, stitched it all together, trimmed the seam, then realised what I'd done. Oops! I know I'm supposed to stitch the lining on it's own and the shell on it's own, but hey, can you tell the difference? Only if you look at the inside :-)

The zip took two goes. I just wasn't happy with the placement first time around, but I'm relatively happy with it now. It's a tiny bit out on the skirt, but otherwise, not bad I reckon. The lining is handstitched to the zip on the inside.

Of course with all that lengthening the bodice and skirt, I ended up with a very long dress! :-)

I think I cut about three/four inches from the bottom before hemming it up. Having learned from my pencil skirt, I'm pleased to say the back vent lining worked well and lays flat with no fudging. The only shame is that because I cut so much off the hem, the vent is not very long. I'd have preferred something deeper personally, but hey, it looks good doesn't it?

Check out that pattern matching on the side seam

The details...
Fabric:  Red wool plaid with dark green and purple. Purple lining fabric from Arthur Toye sale in May 2013. I can't rightly remember the price, but it was half price, so probably came to about $40 all told.
 Notions:   Thread and a standard dress zip.
Pattern:  Simplicity 3673
First worn:  To work, sometime in August/September.
Worn with (in this pic):  An RTW blouse from TK Maxx (UK), boots from Overland and a lime green belt from Farmers.
Changes made:  Lengthened the bodice and skirt. Added a lining to the skirt.
Another one?  I would love to, particularly view C, but I've so many other lovely patterns to make that I've a sinking feeling it many not happen.


  1. ...and it looks even better in real life! :) xx

  2. I really love this dress on you - looks so fab and adorable with that belt!

  3. I think this is one of my favourite of your makes. It fits so well and I like the longer pencil skirt. It's so pretty and the silhouette is fabulous on you. Yep, one of my faves!