Added Apr 2, 2011
Vintage Vogue 1043, Original 1953 Design: Below mid-calf dress has fitted surplice bodice with stitched tucks and short kimono sleeves, left side zipper closure, underarm gussets and inside belt. Contour belt has buckle without prong.
The instructions are very easy to follow – this dress came together very quickly. The reinforcement and construction of the gussets take this pattern from “easy” to “average,” but anyone with a little patience can easily tackle this dress.
I love that this dress does not take the usual 5 or 6 yards that most 1950s full-skirted dresses do. The less full skirt really works nicely, and I love that the skirt is not gathered and a little more streamlined.
All of the little vintage details are wonderful. The directions include a waist stay, a lapped zipper (which I did not end up using), and underarm gussets to keep the kimono sleeves from bunching.
I added my standard 3/4" to the torso length which throws off the darts a bit (I had to make sure that the darts would extend into the seam allowance to be “caught.”
A decorative hook was used to close my belt instead of the suggested buckle. The belt is contoured, and although it takes a bit more fabric and time, it really finishes off quite nicely instead of the rectangular ones I usually find myself making with my leftover fabric scraps!
I decided to use an invisible zipper instead of the lapped zipper included in the instructions because I had the color I needed on hand.
To finish off my edges, I used french seams where they were possible. And for my zipper seam, I used bias strips of my self-fabric to bind the edges.
I will definitely sew this one up again – just not sure when! This is a fabulous, flattering dress that I would highly recommend to everyone who loves vintage style. I think it would work well in a wool for the colder months.
Quilting cotton; invisible zipper