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There’s a reason why fashion designers and sewers will often reference the past when making clothes in the present— there are certain classic that will always be timeless, classy and elegant. How many of you refer to a certain decade or era when designing? Why do you think these looks come back in style? Will they still be worn on 100 years? Read on and get 7 brand new patterns. Above: Model in yellow dress from Vogue, 1938; Madisyn (in Alberta Ferretti ad campaign).

These 7 new patterns are super sweet, but you can give them a vicious (tongue-in-cheek) edge depending on how you style them— but ultimately you’ve got some instant classics you can hang on to forever.



A super sweet dress with Peter Pan collar is perfect for date day, a work day, or a night out!



Button up in style with this button down dress pattern perfect for in-between seasons and layering. Cut it from a soft cotton voile or gingham for a retro feel, or washed silk for a modern look.



Layer this 1950s style 3/4 length sleeve jacket over a prom dress, a wedding gown or for a more casual take, wear it over jeans and a tank top. I recommend cutting this brocades, tweeds or a neon wool crepe!



Are you a fan of cropped trousers? I like when they are skin tight (not bell bottom or flared cropped trousers). These have a nice high waistline so you got that part down. I would make the leg a bit more narrow and they’ll be perfect to wear with a sweater set, a frothy blouse or vintage cardigan.



We love utilitarian clothes that are classy and feminine here at BurdaStyle and this dress with slouching pockets has pockets large enough to hold a bunch of grapefruits (maybe even a watermelon). I adore the contrast of voluminous skirt and straight, narrow sleeves. Cut from black silk you’ve got your perfect LBD.



An A-line dress works well for just about anyone. This style nips in at the waist and flares out to mid-calf, allowing a no-cling silhouette at the hips and thighs. It would look lovely with the sleeves included from the dress above as well.



Prom anyone? Here is a sweet bustier dress made for a prom. Or for bridesmaids or an alternative bride. I can’t wait to see how our users interpret this one— it definitely has potential.



W magazine 50s inspiration with Lara Stone, April 2011…

32 Comments

  • C74c33cb0fa288d12cf175183f78dfe556a5d163_large

    May 25, 2011, 01.42 AMby patalie

    These dresses are drool inducing! Sadly, I am not experienced enough to alter the patterns to fit. Maybe one day..

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    May 12, 2011, 12.10 PMby libbysharf

    Please note that the A line dress and the peter pan collar one are in petite sizes. So someone (like me) who doesn’t have much experience with altering patterns should know that…

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    May 12, 2011, 03.51 AMby 12cupsoftea

    I think the jacket is sweet, can imagine it in so many fabrics. Love the pants. The A-line frock looks flattering with the unusually angled seams (we like illusions!). Not sure whether I could carry off the loose pocketed frock. It is adorable and comfy seeming, but can an old hook who lived through and wore the 80s first time round pull it off?

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    May 11, 2011, 12.39 PMby Timea Schmidt

    I love the boat neck A-line dress!!! Wouldn’t it look cool to make the side panels from contrast fabric? I think I’ll try. Like retro style dresses. It’s always flattering, no matter what is your body type and makes you look and feel like a woman. I wish i could wear them more often.

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    May 11, 2011, 11.55 AMby Ruth Meiland

    I love the patterns, cant wait to start on the A line dress!!

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    May 11, 2011, 04.41 AMby nouvellegamine

    i LOVE these patterns! i can’t wait to get my copy of burda :D

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    May 11, 2011, 04.41 AMby nouvellegamine

    i LOVE these patterns! i can’t wait to get my copy of burda :D

  • 11258216_10206641305901111_7249394459930650298_n_large

    May 11, 2011, 04.41 AMby nouvellegamine

    i LOVE these patterns! i can’t wait to get my copy of burda :D

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    May 11, 2011, 01.40 AMby mlssfshn

    Love the peter pan collar, great article!

  • The_artist_with_pansy_large

    May 10, 2011, 09.45 PMby ck-paz

    I love the look of the dress with the slouch pockets; so much so that I purchased the pattern and will give it a go. These 7 retro classics are simply fabulous.

    1 Reply
    • Dahlnyc_1352392376_600_large

      May 11, 2011, 01.51 AMby alisondahl

      I am looking forward to your creation! Do share!

  • Sidney_and_me_large

    May 10, 2011, 08.56 PMby easbrooke

    Oh, my goodness! I love the A-line dress, especially the neckline. I’d make this one for sure and even make a few shirts based on the bodice.

    2 Replies
    • Dahlnyc_1352392376_600_large

      May 11, 2011, 01.52 AMby alisondahl

      A note from a user on the A-line Dress: “My one caution is that the A-Line dress is quite small fitting (even with 3 inches added in length to the bodice) and will require extensive modification for a larger bust- Its certainly designed for a figure with a small torso.”

    • Sidney_and_me_large

      May 11, 2011, 07.33 PMby easbrooke

      Thanks, Alison!

      I’ve got a short torso, so that may not be a problem. I’ll just have to measure it and see. I don’t, however, have such a small frame so that will be something to consider. :)

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    May 10, 2011, 08.15 PMby groovymama

    These patterns are fantastic. Love the pants and the ‘weird pocket dress’

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    May 10, 2011, 06.22 PMby tinybows

    I reeeeally like the first pattern! And the dress with the huge weird pockets.

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    May 10, 2011, 03.34 PMby ellohdesign

    gorgeous! love all of these.

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    May 10, 2011, 01.49 PMby Sabrina Wharton-Brown

    You know, if those crop trousers were ankle length they would look very like a pair I saw Doris Day wear at the beginning of Move Over Darling. : )

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    May 10, 2011, 01.08 PMby FabricUiPhoneApp

    I love that color photo from the 1930s with the yellow long dress and bolero jacket. I swear the bolero jacket, with its puffy sleeves, sleek lines and cropped length is just perfect for nearly any summer dress. It’s what keeps the sunburn away when you’re outside and you warm inside in the air-conditioned office. I"m going to make me a chenille bolero jacket soon.

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    May 10, 2011, 12.45 PMby turtlegirl00

    i love all of them!!! I love the bustier dress, a-line, the dress with pockets… I can’t decide where to begin!

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    May 10, 2011, 11.20 AMby jay283

    Keep the retro way Burdastyle! The two first dresses and the one with the huge pockets looks fabulous! I should make the one with the peter pan collar very soon!

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    May 10, 2011, 10.25 AMby ladyshape

    I really like the dress patterns although am not sure about the volume in the back of the first two styles. The A-line style is such a simple but beautiful cut. And neon wool crepe sounds amazing for the jacket! Where can you find such a thing?

    6 Replies
    • Img_3801_1__opt_opt_large

      May 10, 2011, 11.31 AMby Lieke Wouters

      I have the issue for some weeks now and really looking forward to making the dress with the peter pan collar! I’m not too sure about the volume in the back either and was hoping to modify it a bit. Keeping my fingers crossed as a novice….

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      May 10, 2011, 12.14 PMby dreamfast

      The volume in the back is for comfort, I suppose. Only I don’t see why there should be a seam, since the center line is completely stright.

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      May 10, 2011, 01.49 PMby zsyzu

      I just made the first dress with the Peter Pan collar but I haven’t posted the photo yet. I had to re-do the back of the dress because the gathers just made it look messy.

    • Dahlnyc_1352392376_600_large

      May 10, 2011, 02.30 PMby alisondahl

      I have made some BurdaStyle garments out of neon wool crepe, the Fatina Shift dress in magenta, and the Fatina Shift dress in bright aqua.
      I bought the fabric at B&J Fabrics in New York city— they do ship internationally too.

    • Img_3462_large

      May 10, 2011, 03.38 PMby ladyshape

      Thanks Alison, I had a look at B&J Fabrics. Wow. You could really rinse out your bank account on that site. Although I couldn’t find any wool crepe, perhaps come autumn there will be some.

    • Dahlnyc_1352392376_600_large

      May 10, 2011, 07.15 PMby alisondahl

      You know, they don’t list it for some reason. They have a ton in stock though, maybe an email over to them will get you on the right track?

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    May 10, 2011, 12.34 AMby Anita Merrill

    I love the fact that you can take classic elements from different era’s and incorporate them seamlessly into modern fashion. I am loving the fact that current fashion is so open to that incorporation rather than trying to create a signature (read, dated) look like we have had in the past several decades. As for these patterns, I adore the 3/4 sleeve jacket and cropped pants.

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