So what was I wearing? I had bought up some lovely printed cotton from Spotlight, one of their vintage reproduction fabrics with yellow roses on it. I bought about 5 metres of it because it was on sale, I loved it, and any 1950's style dress takes up a hell of a lot of fabric. I had an idea of what I wanted to make up but I didn't actually have a pattern that matched it directly, so it was mash up time! I used the bodice of Simplicity 1873 but grafted it so it had a higher neck and a lower back finish. I then used a gathered skirt pattern from Vogue 8723. I also took a sleeve pattern from unfortunately I dont know where. My memory has quickly faded. Most shirt sleeves from a shirt pattern would do the trick. I bought white cotton voille to line the bodice and kept the sleeves unlined.
It was quite easy to pull the different pattern pieces together. What made it easy was that it had a gathered skirt which can adjust to how you want it to the bodice. There's no matching seams, darts or pleats. I did add about an inch to the skirt bottom so it fell under the knee. Adding the sleeves was a little trickier so that required a couple of fittings as I went along. I opted to have the zipper go down the side seam rather than back as I was a bit concerned that having lowered the back it might end up gaping at the top of a zipper. By having it on the side it is well hidden.
I wanted to try out doing my own matching fabric belt again and used the advice, tips and tricks from Sunni of the blog A Fashionable Stitch. Sunni has an excellent step by step guide on her blog and on top of that she also used to sell belt kits with everything you need bar the eyelet tool. I still had a couple of kits at home to choose from. I checked out her shop recently it looks like she sells the belt parts seperately now and not in kits, but just follow the instructions and you'll know what you need to get and how to do it. It is a finicky to make up but I enjoyed the process and when you get a good outcome it is very satisfying! My tip is to stick with using fabrics which aren't too thick. My first belt making attempt the fabric was too thick and it just didn't work well. But most lightweight cottons will wodo the trick. Next time I am planning on making one with piping on the edges - will be tricky!
Me looking classy before the office Melbourne Cup function!