Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Before and After "Hit Parade" - 40s Refashionista Beauty

The Seamstress: Vicki Muise
The Pattern: Vintage 1948 McCall 7286 Sewing Pattern Misses' Dress

Vicki chose the view on the right to sew up a graceful late 40s summer dress in a luscious tea length.

The Result: I love this dress - it's garden party-perfect! And the story behind this dress is a delight - a story of  preparing muslin-turned refashionista. :D

Here is Vicki's story of this dress:

"I sewed a muslin from this flowery $1 sheet because I had to make a few routine changes (SBA, increase the waist, shorten the skirt). Then everyone who visited me saw this muslin hanging up in my sewing corner and said that they would wear it as is! I had already cut out some vintage polyester with a nicer drape, to make a final version, but decided to put the finishing touches on the muslin just to see how it would turn out.

I posted the dress on The Sew Weekly and another member wanted to try it as well. Since I had already traced the pattern to make my adjustments, I shared it with her and she will post her version soon too."

Is that not awesome? And that's a self-fabric buckled belt, too! I can't wait to see the other member's version of this dress on The Sew Weekly. This is such a great story, Vicki. Thanks for letting me share your wonderful result. :)

Oh, and you can follow Vicki's sewing experiences on her blog: Another Sewing Scientist.


  1. Thanks Kathleen! It turned out to be a great basic pattern to use as-is or to alter. I have another version of LadyB cut out, and I plan to make LadyA with a shorter skirt. The thing that surprised me the most was the sheer number of pattern pieces for the shoulder pads. Who knew there were so many shoulder pad variations?!

  2. The evolution of the shoulder pad is very interesting. In the early 40s, a pattern would describe how to make one by basically folding and stitching a rectangle of padding. Super simple, no pattern pieces! Then came the circle pattern piece, folded in half and stitched. Also simple. Finally came the 3-pattern-piece shoulder pad for a more shaped, refined fit.

    The 40s and the 80s used the shoulder pad to give the wearer the look of broader, less sloping shoulders - a sharp, strong appearance. Power shoulders! :D