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Wednesday, July 27, 2016

· A Few of My Favorite Things.... ·

This is definitely a post that includes all of my current favorites!  Favorite vintage hat of the year (so versatile, so comfortably "me"), favorite fabric (that I finally found a use for!), favorite new shoes (love!!), and favorite new dress pattern (Butterick 8038- already have another dress made from it!).

We had a local friend and former neighbor gift us her mother's collection of sewing patterns last year.  Most of them fell in the 1960s/70s range, but the two 1950s patterns were absolute STUNNERS.  *And* in my size.

I love, love, love how unique and flattering this pattern is and after mulling it over for a while, I remembered that the hand-printed Indian muslin that I've had for ages would be a perfect combination!

The bodice is quite unique with the side fronts extending above the bust to cross over and pleat into the opposite shoulder while the center front piece invisibly extends up behind.

When the preview for these 'Sergi' shoes popped up on Royal Vintage's instagram, I quite literally squealed with delight!  I had quite a few Rewards points burning a hole in my pocket, so it was a no-brainer.  They are just as beautiful in real life, too!

My only caveat for these is the sizing.  This is my first pair of Chelsea Crew shoes, and they come in European sizes.  I'm a true sz 8 in American sizing but I flip-flop between needing a 38 and a 39 in European sizing, depending on both the brand and the style of shoe.  I went ahead with the 39s thinking that a touch too big was preferable to a touch too small.  They are on the big side, but certainly not warranting a whole size smaller and a simple heel grip is enough to make them just right. :-)

The soft gold color of these is just gorgeous and the heel height is right in my comfort zone, making these an effortless choice!  The soles are comfortable for walking, but also have enough slickness that I was able to wear them for an evening of dancing without having any difficulties.

They're the perfect style and shape for 1920s and 30s (and I have a few dresses just waiting to be showcased with them!), but I couldn't resist pairing them with this 1950s dress, either. :-)

* Disclaimer- I received these shoes at a discount in exchange for posting about them and this post contains affiliate links ('cause I'd like any excuse I can find to purchase more shoes! ;-))*

Pattern Matching Obsession.  Spot the seams! ;-)

Also, I really love the vintage idea to insert back zippers below the neckline.  Works well and also eliminates the headache of trying to achieve an flawless neckline finish- my nemesis!

I love the design element of extending the center front panel into the skirt!

4" deep hem- because I can!
Also, I should do a post about this new crinoline sometime- it's pretty much the best thing EVER.
· edited to add- I have a post about crinolines here now! ·

As always- a pocket!

I've always really liked this fabric and I got it a long time ago from Heritage Trading on eBay and it was originally intended for an 18th century gown.  As time passed, I realized how little I actually needed another 18th c. gown fabric (still having at least 3 fabrics earmarked for that purpose...) and I eventually became dissatisfied with its suitability for that era.  There are a great many flaws in the printing of the fabric, which, while it is entirely forgivable due to the nature of being hand block-printed (and inexpensive) made me wary of using it for an entire 18th c. dress.  Granted, not all printed cottons were well-executed and high quality (lots of evidence to the contrary!), but the research I've done made me hesitant to use it in such large quantities!  Also, in that period it was impossible to achieve a color-fast green dye, so any printed fabrics with green were made by printing in yellow and then hand-painting the desired areas with blue- the color combination achieving the desired green.  Consequently, it is a more expensive option and was saved for quality chintzes.  My fabric is obviously not high-end, so the more I read, the less I felt comfortable using it...

Thankfully the love of the exotic never goes out of style, so there are lots of examples of 20th century clothing utilizing ethnic fabrics! :-)  The fabric is a lovely choice for summer- lightweight and easy to care for while still being a nice quality and suitable for dressy occasions.  Currently, it is solely a church/wedding dress, but with the right accessories it would make a great sundress, too!

· Photos by Kathryn ·


  1. Ahh, you look so cute!! :) I love the interesting details and designs of this dress; the partial back zipper, the front bodice/skirt panel, the crossover front. So, so pretty and extremely elegant!! The fabric is to die for, and your accessories are the perfect touch.

  2. Oh. And I would love to hear more about your crinoline! I am about to need a new one, so I would love any tips on where to find a good one. Thanks!

  3. Lovely dress! I love the color combination, and you wear it so well. :)

  4. I love this outfit - it is so stylish!

    I especially like the pattern on your dress

  5. This dress is completely adorable! Every bit of your outfit=LOVE! I just recently started following your blog, it was such fun to chance upon it and read through all the old posts!

  6. Do share about your crinoline! I've been wanting to try some 50s styles, but know nothing of the underneath things for a more polished look. :)

  7. That is a beautiful dress. I know what you mean about deciding that a fabric is not quite right for certain periods despite having originally purchasing a fabric for that specific time frame. My period of choice is the 1940's and I am still working the fabrics out for that. Oh, how I wish I could just travel back in time to do my shopping in that era and come back out with all my fabric. :) Wouldn't that just be wonderful!


  8. Absolutely divine ensemble - beautiful dress and fabric (great shape with that crinoline) and perfect accessorizing ;o)

  9. Oh my happiness! I can totally see why these are some of your favorite things! That dress is darling! I love the criss cross thing that's going on in the front...and the pattern on the fabric is so lovely. Your hat, the gloves and those shoes! Huzzah for all things coming together to make a seriously fabulous ensemble! So very well done and don't you just love giftings like the one you got with all those pattern IN YOUR SIZE!!!!!???? Oh true happiness!

  10. I love the bodice and back of this dress. So pretty!

  11. Another endlessly beautiful dress! The details in the design make it really extra special, and that zipper is so interesting! Zippers and I don't get along so I think I would be very afraid to try setting one in like that!

  12. Incredibly pretty outfit and photos. The marriage of soft, soothing summer light and that equally lovely colour palette of the dress is nothing short of enchanting.

    xoxo ♥ Jessica

  13. I also love those shoes! The gold was very tempting, but I really would rather have the red. Luckily, Lauren does not have the red in stock anymore in my size, therefore removing the temptation!

    This is a lovely dress. The colors are so vibrant and summery!


  14. Beautiful dress- such a unique bodice detail. I have seen these gold shoes on several bloggers, and each person styles them differently. They seem like the perfect versatile shoe that goes with everything! They pair perfectly with this outfit.
    The Artyologist

  15. I love how light and garden-party-esque it is!!

  16. What a wonderful outfit! I love the hat you paired with it too! And those shoes are marvelous!


  17. So beautiful. The devil really is in the details with this dress. Simply divine! x

  18. New to your blog. Love this pattern and fabric. Looks great on you too!

  19. I love the print and fabric of this dress,you really look gorgeous

  20. Where Can one get a hold of such a parterne?

    1. Stinna, since this is a vintage pattern you'll have to look either locally or online! I usually check Etsy and eBay first, although a google search might turn up another copy on a stand-alone site. I saw several copies when I first posted this, but not as many now- maybe I drove up the demand. ;-)



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