Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Style 141

This dress was inspired by a 1952 fashion.

Photo by Frances McLaughlin Gill

 One pattern, 5 different looks!

With dirndl skirt

With full/flared skirt

With dirndl skirt
With dirndl skirt
With flared skirt
With flared skirt

Flared or dirndl skirt?

I included the patterns and measurements for two skirt styles in this pattern.

The dress on the left has a flared skirt and the dress on the right has a dirndl skirt.  There is not a huge difference in the look of the two skirts, but there are pros and cons to each style.
The Flared Skirt

Pros-less bulk at the waist with beautiful fullness at the hemline.
Cons-uses a lot of fabric, you need almost 1/2 a yard for each dress, more difficult to hem.

The Dirndl Skirt
Pros- You only need 1/4 of a yard of fabric to make this dress, no need to hem this skirt when lined.
Cons- more bulk at the waist.

 I like to line my flared skirt dresses with an underskirt.  It is not necessary, but is a nice touch.

The dirndl skirted dress is cute inside out.
The dress' hem is made by making the lining shorter than the skirt.

The dirndl skirted dress is lined with a yoke at the waist to reduce bulk.  

View A

The Tabs

 Using the pattern guide, cut the tabs out of stiff interfacing.

Fuse the interfacing to the fabric strips.  Cut the extra fabric at the top of the tab down to the inside point.
 Fuse a small strip of Wonder-Under to the top of the tab.

 Remove the Wonder-Under's paper backing, and fuse the extra fabric along the points.
Fuse Wonder-Under strips on both sides of the tab.  Remove the paper backing and fuse the sides to the interfacing.
Fray-check the whole point area and let it dry.

 Trim away the extra fabric.

 Mark the darts and stitch the shoulder seam, press the shoulder seams open.

 Stay-stitch the neckline and clip the curves.

Repeat these steps for the lining and also stay-stitch the armholes.  Clip the armhole seam allowances and press them up.

 Hem the armholes.

 Baste the piping to the neckline, notice how the piping is a little over 1/4" in from the center back.
 Stitch the lining to the bodice at the neckline, under-stitch the lining.

Mark the centers of the sleeves, and baste the tabs to the sleeves.  (Ignore the gather-stitches at the top of the sleeves.  Do them later, or the threads just get in the way.)

Base the piping to the bottoms of the sleeves, zig-zag or serge the seam.

Press the seam up and top-stitch.  Keep the tabs out of the way!  Now you can gather-stitch the tops of the sleeves.
 Stitch the bodice darts.

Stitch the sleeves to the armholes.

 Side seams

 Baste the bodice tap to the front of the bodice.

Press up the bodice lining seam allowance.

I forgot to take a few photos, but the skirt was gathered and sewn to the bodice and the lining was hand-stitched down.

This is the skirt without a petticoat.

add photo here.


 Sew buttons on the tabs.

Skirt ruffle- the two pieces stitched together, folded in half, pressed, and pinned.

 Gather stitches

 Stitch the ruffle to the skirt.

Mark up 3/8" from the top of the ruffle.

 Make a tuck at the hem by folding the skirt over the ruffle at the fold line.

Hand hem the dress or top-stitch the hem.

Hand hemmed


View B

 Mark darts, shoulder seams, stay-stitch neckline, and armholes.

 Clip neckline, and armholes' seam allowances.

 Measuring the piping.

 Baste the piping to the neckline and armholes.

 Stitch the lining to the bodice at the neckline.

 Under-stitch the neckline (I didn't write about this in the instructions, but it is a nice detail.

 Stitch the darts.

Stitch the lining to the armholes, clip seams, turn bodice right-side out and press.


Stitch the side seams, press the seams open.
Full/Flared Skirt

Hem the skirt's center back edges and gather-stitch the skirt's waist.

Hem the skirt lining's back edges and stay-stitch the waist.
 Gather and stitch the skirt to the waist.

Dirndl Skirt
Gather stitch the dirndl skirt and the lining.

Gather and stitch the skirt to the waist and the skirt lining to the yoke.

Center back seam

View C

Refer to View B, omitting the piping.

View D


Cut the seam allowance off of the right bodice front only to compensate for the placket.


 Shoulder Seams

 Stitch the linings to the bodices at the necklines and armholes.

 Side seams

 Stitch the center back openings, and the left front seam.  Trim the corners, press seams open, turn the bodices right-side out, and press.
Baste the right front closed.

I forgot to photograph the placket steps, but here is the finished placket on the right side.   Overlap the bodice fronts 1/4" and baste.
Fuse the interfacing to the hats.

 Stitch the hat backs and press the seams open.

 Stitch the hat pieces together at the top.  Clip the seam and turn the hat right-side out.

 Baste the bottom of the hat together.

 Stitch the bias trim to the hat.

 Fold the bias trim and pin it to the inside of the hat.

Hand stitch the bias trim.
For photos of the construction of the bow belt, click here.



  1. Hi ! thank you to share with us this new dress. See you soon.

  2. oK, Diane...I just found you from pinterest, and can I just say you are totally awesome, love your style, your photos, your rock girl...