How is your project coming along for the Dress Like Your Grandma vintage sewing challenge? We have a month left to sew our garments and I don’t know about you, but I haven’t started sewing mine yet. I do have my pattern and fabric now, so I can get going just as soon as I can get around to it. I am currently in the middle of a big project, so I probably won’t start on my dress until next month, but then again, I am a last-minute type of sewist.
What am I making?
Well, I’ve looked through many family photos and have decided to make a 1940’s peasant dress inspired by this photo of my grandma when she was in college at UNH. There was another dude in this photo from a dance that wasn’t my grandpa, so I took him out.
I looked at a lot of vintage peasant/ruffled dress patterns from the 40’s and saw a few that resembled this dress, but in the end I decided to use a pattern I already have and alter it to resemble my grandma’s dress. I considered using a floral print to make my dress, until I saw this awesome Milly silk/cotton voile bird print (no longer available) on Gorgeous Fabrics‘ site. I had just won a $100 gift certificate, so I ordered that along with a light beige rayon jersey to make a Scroop wonder-under slip to go with dress (and everything else!). My grandma loved birds, so that fabric is apropos, besides being bright and cheerful, which is definitely my style. 🙂
The pattern I chose for my dress is out-of-print McCall’s 5864. I’ve made this pattern before in silk/cotton voile, which I lined. My 40’s bird print version is going to be unlined, but as the fabric is a bit sheer, I’m making a slip to wear with it. I’m making view B, but will be altering the neckline, the sleeves and the skirt to make it resemble my grandma’s dress. I can’t see the bottom of my grandma’s dress, but I can tell that it’s longer than my pattern version. It may even be floor length for all that I know! Mine will be knee-length and I’m undecided yet if I’m going to add a narrow width ruffle at the hem. I imagine that I will see how it looks with the altered bow neckline on the ruffled bodice and the sleeves. I wear my previous version of this pattern ALL THE TIME during the summer months, so I’m sure this new and much more special version will get a lot of wear. 🙂
Also in the never-ending queue….
I doubt that I will get to either of these dresses during the span of this sewing challenge, but someday I’d like to make to this pink shirtdress that my grandma is wearing in this photo. I have some pink cotton sateen that would be perfect for it as well as a vintage 60’s shirtdress pattern that is similar to my grandma’s dress. This photo was taken in the mid-60’s in Venezuela with my grandpa and my mom.
I would also so love to make the dress my grandma is wearing below in a photo from 1946, right after my grandparents got married. It appears that her initials are embroidered or appliqued on her dress. I have almost the same initials (TMH), so I could embroider something for myself that’s very similar. I would probably make this in a navy cotton shirting and do that fabulous monogram in gold. I think I have a similar 40’s dress pattern, too!
Plans, plans, plans! And not enough time…. 🙂
If you’re planning to join us in this sewing challenge, we’d love to see what your plans are. Use the hashtag #dresslikeyourgrandma on Instagram and tag me @tanyamaile so I can see what you’re up to! We have also have a Facebook group! Post your finished photos on our Pinterest group board or email them to me (firstname.lastname@example.org) so I can include you in the concluding challenge photo spread and be eligible to win a prize from our fabulous sponsors. All of the information for this challenge is in this post.