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Wednesday, 12 October 2016

How I made my My Mccalls Vintage Circa 1963 dress

This is a 1960s style dress with some adaptations

So, here is my experience of making up the pattern. 

Some examplesof vintage dresses

The pattern I chose is McCalls 7086 which s circa 1963. When we think of the 1960s we think of the short dresses, white boots and Twiggy. This fashion did not appear until the mid 1960s though, prior to that the look was very elegant.
 I chose to make the slim version of the pattern as it reminded me of the clothes worn by the women in my neighbourhood when I was a child
The fabric is a Viscose from Minerva crafts. Just look at the huge selection of viscose dress fabrics they have in stock Viscose dress fabrics  There are plenty of colours and designs to chose from at very good prices.

This is my basket which I use to keep my cutting out and fabric marking tools in so that it is easy to carry to my dining room table which is where I cut my patterns out.

I like to use traditional methods where possible when making up vintage designs, so this dress called for tailors tacks.

The lining is a pale pink taffeta, a lined skirt hangs very well and it is worth the effort to put a lining in any straight skirt where possible.

 I did make a toile as this is a new style for me. I found that  the darts on the bodice front fit perfectly, but as I did not want to interrupt the pattern on the fabric I  decided to leave out the centre front seam. If you ever do this you need to remove the seam allowance otherwise the bodice will be too wide. I did find the bodice rather long and I reduced it by an inch.

Yes I did use my vanishing ink marker pen when marking the pleats on the bow. It is from Vanishing marker pen

I dd much pondering over the bow. In the original position it just did not look right on me , so I lowered the centre position to just above the waist seam.I also found the knot did not sit right, maybe it is because viscose fabric is soft and flowing, I feel that in a firmer fabric the bow would have sat as it shows on the pattern. I substituted the knot  for a little tie and I am happy with it.

I normally use invisible zips,but they did not exist in 1963, so I used a lapped zip .This is the right side being stitched in place using a normal zipper foot.

The left side laps over the right side slightly covering the entire zip

I did use some more modern methods  in that I neatened all the seams with my brother overlocker
This is the one I use The Brother 1034d Overlocker from
Have you ever experienced your fabric puckering during overlocking? It could be that your differential feed needs adjusting.Don't panic about it, if you get your instruction manual out you will find that all you need do is to adjust the dial on the side of the machine to make the feed dogs move at different rates to eliminate the problem. Dont forget to turn it back to the normal setting afterwards. As this is a fine fabric I needed to adjust my differential feed slightly by turning the dial clockwise.

This is the overlocker in use, the emerging stitches are straight and not pulling the fabric out of shape.

I made some other adjustments to the pattern.First I chopped a good four inches off the hem..
 My toille didn't look right at the back, so I removed the back darts completely adding two small pleats at the front matching up to the bust darts instead.
The picture shows the back being pressed.There is a slit in the centre back for walking ease.

By the way I have just take delivery of a Horn sewing cabinet, and it has revolutionised my sewing.Everything is  at hand, everything is neat and clears away in seconds. If I can just train myself to put snippets  of thread  into the thread catchers and not on the floor my happiness will be complete!  The cabinet I bought is the NOVA Horn Nova Sewing cabinet and of course I just HAD to buy the hobby chair too! There is a review on the previous page of this blog if you want to see more 

 Well, this is the finished dress. Slightly adapted to make it fit me now. The original style is a "Wiggle" dress,so by adding a couple of pleats and shortening it I find it more wearable .Dont forget too that women in the early 1960s  were smaller than we are today, bra's were more pointy and not rounded as today's are, also women tended to wear girdles, so their shape was totally different to today's.

I like the little tie on the bow, the knot just did not suit this fabric. dont be afraid to go where your fabric leads you!

and of course a vintage dress needs a cup and saucer, although I think they were rather smaller than mine in 1963.

Happy vintage tea-parties.

#sewangelicthreads #bvsewalong #vintage #vintagefashion #vintagebloger #vintageclothes #1960s