I am still recovering from the Titanic dinner party this weekend (darn seasonal allergies that got me halfway through everything!), but will have some pictures of my gown and the event on Wednesday. (I might post a sneak peek on Facebook though…) Until then, I wanted to share a little something that my lovely friend Sammy of Sammy Davis Vintage and I have been working on!
She’s started a series where bloggers take one vintage garment and style it several different ways, giving ideas about how to work vintage into the modern lifestyle. She sweetly asked me to be a part of this series and I picked a late 50s blue shirtwaist dress I had bought at an estate sale a couple years ago. The challenge was not so much coming up with four looks, but keeping myself from dreaming up even more! hehe. You know I love this concept of making clothes work different ways, so this was right up my alley. Click here to drop by the Sammy Davis Vintage blog and read the entirety of the post with all four of the shirtwaist looks (and be sure to check out the other participant’s style posts as well)! Thanks again to Sammy for having me be a part of this series! (And thank you to Sailor Husband for taking all of the photos–he was really patient since this was a bit of an epic photoshoot!)
A couple months ago Portia of the Miss P blog contacted me with a very fun idea. The premise was a collective refashion project among a handful of bloggers—turning thrift store “duds” into cute pieces that breathed new life into the cast-off garments. Portia would provide the garment—a mystery piece that I would not see until it arrived at my doorstep—and I’d provide the ideas and execute the refashioning.
The brightly wrapped package arrived and I was eager to see what Portia sent me. Inside was neatly folded a two piece suit with a pastel, watercolor floral print. The suit was far too big for me, a bit dowdy, and needed some definite perking up—challenge indeed! Ironically, I had been toying with the idea of doing a dressmaker suit (meaning a woman’s suit that lacks the traditional tailoring we associate with a suit) in a 40s style for myself this summer. I had been poring over lots of “make do and mend” booklets and reading about the homefront during WWII. So my mind was taken up with ideas of how to apply the “make do and mend” challenge to the suit Portia sent me.
I’ve blathered on a great deal about my approach to the project, as well as some loosely strung-together steps of how I went about the refashion on Portia’s blog. I have to admit, I ended up waffling more than a bit with my ideas (did I really want a suit? or would scrapping the entire design of the garment and picking the pieces apart to make something radically different work better?), which meant I had to scramble a bit after my NYC trip to make this happen. Working under pressure sometimes is great fun though, and I have to say I am pleased as punch how this turned out! I’m hoping to get a bit of wear out of the suit before October (although in Florida wearing pastel floral year-round is not frowned upon), and then it shall be my spring suit next year! (Hopefully with a jaunty little hat—still to be found and acquired…)
A 1940s Advance pattern with cutting diagram for a man’s suit from my pattern collection.
The only “bad” side to this? It’s whetted my appetite for eventually buying a many-sizes-too-large man’s suit and doing a real 1940s “make do and mend” suit! If you’ve ever seen the layouts in old booklets or even old patterns from the war years, it’s a fascinating way of re-cutting a man’s suit using a ladies’ pattern, and creating something totally fresh! Now just to find the perfect suit at the thrift store. I’ve come very close, but of course I have a tweed-type fabric in mind and cant’ seem to find a complete suit! lol.
Be sure to stop by Portia’s blog and check out the other amazing refashion transformations that are part of the series!