Thursday, August 19, 2010

August 19th - Day Three

Today's dress is one that I invented using bits and pieces of other patterns and adding a few touches myself. The top of the dress was taken from an early 1930s pattern I found a few years ago, and the skirt was actually the skirt from the pattern I used for the dress in my first post (I double checked and it is indeed a Marian Martin pattern but I can't find a printing date anywhere). As promised I'm including some pictures of the pattern envelopes themselves.

1940s Marian Martin mail order pattern, featured in post on the 17th. The pattern still has the initial transfers, but I've never actually used them. I may eventually make another version of this dress using the transfers, but who knows.  

1930s dress pattern, no company name or date
The fabric that I used is a 1930s reproduction print that I found at a fabric store in Paducah, Ky. Sadly The Guild is no longer in business, but at the time they carried an extensive collection of reproduction printed cottons ranging in date from 1810-1940, that comprised a good 75% of their inventory. I loved the tiny cherry print, and the fact that they were all different colors thrilled me. I incorporated each of these colors into the top stitching and the thread loops at the back of the neck.

The pockets I made out of the corners I had left from cutting out the skirt, and the ribbon I found to use at the neck has tiny white polka dots that mimic the cherry pattern on the dress. The belt is separate and was a bit of an afterthought. I felt like it needed a little more definition at the waist, and the belt was the perfect answer, since taking it apart to add a waistband was more than I wanted to mess with.

Now, as promised the patterns from the blouse and shorts I wore yesterday...

1941 Du Barry blouse pattern with three style options.

1949 McCall's pattern for Misses' bathing suit, coat, and trunks.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

The Wardrobe Project

At the urging of one of my professors, and after much contemplation, I have finally decided to embark on a year long, thorough documentation of my daily wardrobe. While it doesn't necessarily follow the dictates of current fashion trends, a quick perusal of my closet reveals a number of clear trends in style reflecting the significant role that fashion plays in my life. Spurred on by my own interest in fashion and costume history, I have managed to construct a wardrobe comprised to a great extent of things I have made myself, inspired by the period of fashion I find most compelling, 1930-1960. The attention paid to personal dress and the effort required to achieve the neatly styled outfits of these decades is something I find sadly lacking in modern society. There is a certain refinement that a well planned and carefully accessorized outfit lends to the wearer and the attitude that such a costume conveys is one of confidence on the part of the wearer and a certain degree of respect for the society in which a person lives. The styles of the mid twentieth century lend themselves both to a preservation of that sort of polished wardrobe as well as the ease of modern sportswear. It's just as easy to put on a dress and nice sandals as it is to throw on sweatpants and a t-shirt (a look I personally never leave the house in). That said, my (sometimes failed) attempts to achieve this same style in my own wardrobe are what I intend to track here. You'll get the good along with the bad, and seeing just how often things pop up in my daily life may actually help me clean out my closet when all this is said and done. So here it goes...
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