Wednesday, 4 January 2012

A review on Simplicity 15c Pattern #3474

It seem like Simplicity re-used pattern numbers because when I googled I found a 60's pattern with the same one. This review is for a dress with a pointed yoke from 1940.

The envelope says "Simple to Make" and I agree. It may look a bit complicated when you look at the pattern as it has a yoke and no shoulder seam, but if you have your basic sewing skill in pat, then I don't think this one is hard to make at all. It's unprinted, which I have never used before, which means that all indications on the patterns are made by tiny holes and not lines. When I got used to that I found it very easy to work with. The pattern has two sleeve options and though I really like the short sleeves, i opted to make the long ones as this is meant to be a winter dress. I choose thin black wool crepe for it, a fabric I haven't worked with before. It's beautiful but somewhat slippery, but I basted all seams before sewing. Somewhat more time-consuming, but so worth it.

You make up the bodice and skirt separately and then join them at the waist seam. The skirt has 9 gores, with 6 gores in the front and 3 in the back, which I found very pretty. With so many gores there are no darts in the the skirt and was very quick to make. The bodice is a bit trickier. The instructions are for sewing the yoke to the bodice on machine, which I found much to complicated. So easy to get the points on the yoke wrong. Instead I turned in the seam allowances on the yoke, basted and pressed. I opted for assembling yoke and bodice by hand, with the crepe fabric the stitches are completely invisible despite being sewn from the right side, but you can also topstitch it on the machine if you prefer. I happen to like hand sewing. The long sleeves are shaped with three elbow darts, which I think is a very smart details. Both neckline and sleeves are finished with bias-cut fabric. The dress closes in the side and you can choose either snaps or a zipper. As I have very recently realised that I enjoy inserting zippers if I do it by hand, that is what I did.

I can's see any obvious cons with this pattern. It's pretty straight-forward and I didn't have to make any alterations. However, the sleeves are a bit too loose-fitting and if I make this dress again I will make them fit a bit snugger. The dress in unlined so you will need to wear it with a slip and I think it's a very good idea to put in dress shields. Also, you do need to put in shoulder pads. In 1940 they weren't as prominent as they would become later in the decade, but a pair of small shoulder pads really makes a difference to the look. I think this is a very versatile pattern that would lend itself well to any lightweight fabric that drapes softly. You can do it as the picture show, in a see-through fabric and with the yoke in lace or in a contrasting fabric. I also think it would be very easy to change, like making the yoke rounded instead of pointed or slit the front to close it with buttons.

The dress is worn with a belt and I have fabric left so I can make one in self fabric. For now i wear it with just a black belt. Pictures are yet to be taken though, with a flu in your system you just don't feel up for a photo shoot.


TheBlackPinafore said...

yes, I also noticed that the numbers of the old patterns are recycled for those 60 years.

Jacqui said...

I like that pattern. I bet your finished dress looks nice. I'd like to try sewing, but finding nice patterns (especially vintage) in my size (plus sizes) is difficult. Besides, I find the whole thing rather intimidating! I have great admiration for people who can sew their own clothes.

Beth said...

I love unprinted patterns! It's so much easier to make all the markings when the holes are pre-punched. Every little bit helps. ;)

Hope you feel better soon!

Isis said...

Debora: Just the thing to confuse the vintage seamstress. :)

Jacqui: I'm plus size too, so I know your trouble. I can recommend New Vintage Lady who specialize in larger sizes of vintage patterns and also have a ranger of reproduction patterns. I bought this pattern from her as well as several other and has always recieved my orders promptly.

Vintage Vogue and Decades by Style also have larger sizes for their reproduction patterns. So if you ever feel up to try, I think you may find something there. :)

Isis said...

Beth: That was what I found too! :) Thank you! I'm on the mend, only weak as a kitten.

monika said...

Great pattern! I also want to second the recommendation of New Vintage Lady. I think I've ordered patterns from her twice, and I know I got great service.

KittyMeow said...

Nice review! I can't wait to see this made up. :-D

The thing I love about 40's patterns is the little details. They may look complicated but they aren't really.

And unprinted patterns are easier sometimes because you don't need to put pins/pen/thread through your paper since there are already holes for the markings.

Isis said...

monika: Isn't it! :) Yes, I'm very pleased with everything I have bought for her.

KittyMeow: I agree with you- so many small, but intricate details!

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