Well, I've finally done it! After months of drooling over and purchasing several vintage patterns I've finally made my first one.
Simplicity 8498, printed in 1969 ~ the year I was born! I didn't know that (the year it was printed, not the year I was born) until I just looked this minute. How appropriate for my first vintage pattern that it's one as old as me.
I first saw this pattern on the Sewaholic blog a while ago and fell in love with the simple yet unusual shaping. It was actually pretty easy to track a copy down - I think I got it on Etsy - and it was pretty reasonably priced.
I decided to make mine in some teal jersey/ponte knit I had in my stash. It's polyester, so a bit clingy without a slip, but it's not too bad.
I really like the little details, the darts at the back of the neck:
the elbow darts:
and of course, the gorgeous front shaping:
I've never used a pattern that incorporated elbow darts or back neck darts before, but they're lovely little details.
I only had to make minor changes, narrowing the shoulders about an inch, and taking the sleeve and side seams in about 5/8" each. I also had to take a good inch off the sleeve head as my first attempt at setting in the sleeves resulted in some very unattractive gathering.
I omitted the neck facing, as I really dislike these in general, and opted to use some bias binding to finish the neck. The most suitable colour I had to hand was navy, so navy binding it was.
I was initially going to top stitch the binding in place, but decided on catch stitching it down, which gives a cleaner finish on the outside.
I'm very pleased with the fit of this, with only very simple adjustments needed. It's not the sort of dress you'd want loads of, as the design is very distinctive, but I can definitely see a summer one being made, possibly sleeveless.