Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Mood Board Pedal Pushers

Here in the midwest May can still be pretty chilly. So the perfect pinup solution is Pedal Pushers! Or capris. Or Clam Diggers. (They're all different. We'll talk about that later) I've been 
feeling the green and blue spectrum a lot lately, so here's the plan for the vintage pattern in my stash- Simplicity 4009

Sources: Green and pink capris from VooDoo Vixen. Brown pocket detail vintage Etsy.
I also think Pedal pushers are a big staple in the rockabilly world, so I will use Butterick 5895 to create a modern pinup pair!

Sources: Polka Dot pants from Hell Bunny. Swallow pants from Sourpuss Clothing. Blue pants from Deadly Dames Pinup Girl Clothing.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Copy Cat: Peter Pan Blouse

For my modern retro interpretation I chose to do Simplicity 1693.


I like this one because it has a cut similar to a 1950's blouse. It also has a little back closure which is super vintage. I decided to do the top left version, but add sleeves. I like sleeves because I live in a climate that is only super warm about 3 months a year. Sleeves are the mid-westerner's friend. I used a swiss dot that had been sitting in my stash for a while, because this blue will match a ton of my skirts.


I also decided to add front pleats, like the inspiration photo I put on my mood board. I found this Awesome tutorial on UpCraftClub that shows how to add pleats to any pattern. Here's the finished blouse:


I added some tiny pearlized buttons from Joann's to complete the front. Sorry for the kitchen photos- it was raining and really bad lighting when I took these.

Back Closure with button!

Overall This pattern turned out super cute, and I would definitely sew it again!


Monday, April 17, 2017

Real Retro: Simplicity Blouse


Simplicity 2195
My Real Retro pattern for this month is the Simplicity 2195. I went with the version with sleeves because I thought it looked more vintage. I used a cheap broadcloth because I wasn't sure on how it would fit and I didn't feel like doing a muslin (gasp I know, lazy seamstress).

The blouse had an interesting construction- the whole thing was put together, and then the side seams were sewn up. I kind of liked this. 
Here's the mostly finished shirt:

 I'm not posting any pics of the final shirt because I had the brilliant idea to embroider on it, and totally goofed it up. But these pre-embroidery pics give a good idea. I wanted to add something more because it looked a little Martha Stewart for my taste. The shirt is a bit boxy. I haven't decided if I want to pull off the front panel and redo it to remove the failed embroidery, or just call it a loss.

I do think this could be a cute pattern with some adjustments to the shoulder shaping. I might try it again later on.

I do love the color though and I'll probably use the rest of the fabric for another blouse.

Monday, April 10, 2017

April Mood Board

 It's hard to believe April is already here! This year I will be writing about going vintage through sewing both old and new patterns with a vintage feel. This month's theme is blouses! One of the hardest things about getting a good vintage look is finding blouses that are versatile and retro looking. Here's my mood board for the vintage pattern I am going to sew for the Real Retro category (this means I'm using an actual vintage pattern:

After that, I will also sew something vintage looking based on a modern pattern. For the blouse category I'm leaning toward Simplicity 1693. Here's my mood board for that. 


I'm really feeling the blues and teals that are popular in fashion and home decor this year. Minty teal is a great retro color.

What are you sewing this month? Please comment below and tell me about your current projects. And don't forget to follow me to see how my projects turn out!

Monday, March 27, 2017

My Atomic Closet: Or why I Dress Like a Nuclear Housewife


When I was a kid I used to wear my mother's clothes. As an adult I wear my grandma's. And my brother-in-law's grandma's. And the stuff I found in an estate sale downtown after some old lady's family cleaned out her attic. In a society in which clothing can be found everywhere- in seven colors and fourteen sizes- what is the point of wearing other people's old stuff? I can't say that I speak for everyone who dresses this way, but these are my reasons:

I Hate Yoga Pants
Okay so I occasionally wear yoga pants. If I'm doing yoga. (Which is not often because I suck at yoga) But I would much rather wear something in public that doesn't show every detail of my bum. I like the idea of leaving some things to the imagination. It creates mystery.

I Believe in Being Classy
I think that retro, rockabilly and even pinup represent a time when clothing was the result of planning and reflection. Every piece of clothing was special. Women's wardrobes were planned to fit together. And people looked like they cared about how they presented themselves. Vintage dressing to me is about self respect, and caring about the image you present to the world.

Headscarves never look this classy on me...
I Believe in preserving Our Past
I'm a history nut. I like to spend hours researching the type of fabric used for women's hats in the 1930's, or how fabric was dyed in the early 1800's. Everyone needs a hobby right? I like wearing vintage clothes because I feel like that gives me a connection to the past. I understand what it was like for a woman to wake up with rollers in her hair. It gives me a context to understand the development of our culture. It's almost a study of human nature.

I like to Wear Things That Fit Me
Retro fashions were created to fit women. Today's off the rack is often shapeless, and a lot of the time not flattering. Vintage clothing considers the shape of a woman's (or man's) body. It is often cut in a way that is intended to flatter. 

It's Fun. (And a Bit Girly)
Vintage clothing is quirky. I have a dress with green and blue cats on it. It's about expression. The 50's was all about fun fashion. The 40's was about making things work. 
Vintage is also about details. Thought was put into the construction and design of a garment. Retro clothing is often beaded, pleated, or somehow made neated. Yeah I made up that word. Just go with it.

Do you have a vintage style? Do you want to dress retro? Tell me why!