Ugly Vintage Pattern Challenge

I am SO excited to be part of the Ugly Vintage Pattern Challenge this year going on at Simple Simon and Co – I have been in awe of the transformations that everyone is making!  Today it’s my turn, and I feel like I’m cheating a little, because my “ugly” pattern isn’t THAT ugly – it has good bones!

Underneath it all, it was just a knit dress – and knit is all the rage right now.  I thought it would be perfect for a simple everyday summer dress.  I also loved that it had raglan sleeves – I am really loving those lately and it felt real modern to have them on the pattern.

(just ignore how my legs haven’t seen the sun all winter!  my kids peeking over my blogging shoulder at this pic even said “why are your legs so white?!”. Awesome.)

 I wasn’t sure if I wanted to sew something for myself or a kiddo when I started the challenge – here were the final options…

Obviously I went with something for me.   Straight from 1972.  I think even just updating the fabric really made an impact.

Other changes:
–size – my complaint about vintage patterns is that they only come in one size, and on top of that I have no idea what size I am.  I ended up taking in this pattern on the side seams about an inch on each side.  If I were to make it again I’d probably take it in even a little more.
–length – I made it longer – it was already cut out in the pattern I had, and I think it was probably cut for the tunic view, so I added several inches to make it a dress.  I thought that was long enough but if I were to make it again I’d add another additional inch.
–pockets – I liked the general look of the big pockets, but I didn’t love the fold-over detail, so I just made regular pockets with a slanted top edge.
–zipper - the pattern called for a zipper, but for me the reason to work with stretchy knit is so that you don’t have to use a zipper, so I just left it out.  I knew I’d be altering the neckline and wouldn’t need it to zip to get it over my head.
–neckline – this is where the big change came from the original pattern – I cut the neckline lower and more of a scoop neck to make it more up-to-date.  I tried it on, cut it, tried it on, cut it more, etc etc – I should have stopped one cut earlier – I feel like it’s just a little low in the neck, but oh well.

I really like the details on the original pattern.  The fun big pockets.  The raglan sleeve.  (you can see the dart in the sleeve pic – I would probably take that out next time, but I don’t have a huge need for them :) )  The seam that runs up the middle of the front and the middle of the back with topstitching on either side.  Pretty cool.

 It was a relatively easy sew.  I should have timed it to give you a better estimation, but I made the whole dress in an afternoon.  It’d be a great beginner project if you’re looking to sew something for yourself.

(earrings and bangle bracelets are Paparazzi – yep, just $5 — you know I love my Paparazzi Accessories!) 

 Have you ever sewn a vintage pattern before??  Would you want to?
 Be sure to check out Simple Simon and Co and what other bloggers are creating – it’s pretty great to see the transformations from dated to awesome.

Craft Blogger

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  1. says

    I have to say I don’t think this is an ugly pattern to begin with. My mother had a dress very similar to the middle illustration in this gorgeous sparkly beige and fawn sparkly knit. It was the most gorgeous thing eve and she always looked like a goddess when she wore it. I do love the updated version too. Nice job.

  2. says

    HORRAYon your “transformation” for this lovely turquoise knit dress that you’ve sewn from a McCalls EASY vintage pattern. I like the changes you made from the original pattern. The black triangular motifs on stark white seems ideal for the 2 large pockets. You look FAB on the photo shoot! Loos versatile to wear everywhere, indeed! Thanks for sharing. Sarah Helene in Minneapolis

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