HSM #3 – Stashbusting: Stepping Out Dress

I very seldom buy fabric I don’t need for a current sewing project, but of course I assembled some of these projects in different stages of completion, and I just can’t cast away anything textile, so my stash consists mostly of leftovers. There is also the scrap basket, which is overflowing (although my daughter, who is free to use it  for her freestyle sewing and fancy dress things, helps to reduce this). All this compiling feels really nerdy, but it actually pays off, for quite often I can use remnants of clothes I made to match them with other garments or accessories – very thirties.

My plan for the stashbusting challenge was to eventually sew a 1930s pyjama I bought fabric for shortly before I got pregnant. But then there was an invitation to a party and the glamour girl in me gained the upper hand, so I ended up with this: IMG_3403 Kopie The fabric is a very light polyester satin, using the shiny as well as the dull side. I had made a dress for another festivity from this, a pretty uninspired maternity gown: IMG_3396 Kopie I never really warmed to it and it was clear I would not wear it again. It had quite a lot of fabric in the front panel, plus there were ca. 1,5 m left in my stash, so I deconstructed the dress and made new use of it.

I used the basic skirt and tunic patterns I already had adjusted for the last HSM challenge, so this again is a two piece dress meaning to be a one piece. For the top I omitted the sleeves, made a deep v-shaped neckline with a vestee-like insertion and added the sash, hold with a buckle on the left side. IMG_3408 Kopie The skirt has a godet on the left, which shows the dull side of the fabric, to give it some flare. IMG_3410 Kopie The whole thing was done quick and dirty. The cheap fabric didn’t behave as I wanted it to, and there are many spots I wouldn’t recommend a close look on. I have mixed feelings too, when it comes to authenticity. It has a 1920ish feel, and apart from the clearly modern fabric, all the details and features are period accurate, but I’m not sure they would go together in one garment. The plain tubular shape, the vestee neckline and the even hemline would indicate a dress from the first half of the decade. But evening dresses would have ankle length until the mid twenties, while sleeveless daywear wasn’t common until after that. The shiny fabric seems strange too for a day dress, but apparently that was not uncommon.

Anyway, all this is just book knowledge. It seems I haven’t seen enough of twenties fashion yet to get a feel for what would work and what wouldn’t be right. So I’m not awfully proud of this, still it was finished within a week (which is fast for me), and it was fun to wear!

The Challenge:  Stashbusting

Fabric:  Polyester satin, not sure how much of it

Pattern:  Basic skirt and tunic patterns, adapted

Year:  about 1924?

Notions:  Thread, hook and eye, snaps, vintage buckle and, uhm, a safety pin

How historically accurate is it? I’ll give it 50%

Hours to complete:  About ten hours

First worn:  Last weekend to a very nice party

Total cost:  None, everything was from stash

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