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1950s dress with African fabric

Added Aug 9, 2008

by cassielouise

London, United K...






There have been some wonderful African prints this summer, both in the shops and on Burda Style. With this in mind, I bought some African wax print fabric at East Street Market in Walworth, London for £10 – which turned out to be enough to make 2 dresses and 1 skirt.

This dress is from a vintage 1950s sun dress pattern. I think that the combination of vintage fabric and African print fabric gives it a nice, contemporary look. The fabric is stiff enough to give some shape to the full 1950s skirt.

I added a patch pocket which is rather usefully just big enough to hold a paperback book… the dress is also great for twirling!

Material Notes

African wax print cotton





Beth (my sister)

36 Comments Sign in to add a post

  • Img1401055272558_large

    Jan 28, 2014, 03.52 PMby SassyT

    Featured on Sassy Sewing Bees https://facebook.com/sassysewingbees

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    Jun 29, 2012, 07.51 AMby kess

    love this! Very beautiful!!

  • Missing

    Apr 10, 2012, 06.43 AMby Beth De Wit

    Wow, Absolutely love this dress! You look stunning in it ;-) I’m looking everywhere to find the pattern so I can try it out myself. But no luck so far :-( Anyone any idea where to find one?

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    Nov 2, 2010, 11.07 PMby hattyfingers

    Wonderfully done! I am inspired!

    1 Reply
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      May 24, 2011, 07.08 AMby Mamta Sharma

      Thanks for taking the time to discuss this I feel strongly about it and love learning more on this topic. If possible as you gain expertise would you mind updating your blog with more information? as it is extremely helpful for me.
      Golf Drills

  • Missing

    Jun 18, 2010, 11.20 AMby cdonovan

    this is stunning!! I am desperately trying to find the pattern so i can make my birthday dress!

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    Mar 21, 2010, 12.09 PMby maatranut

    I love the design of the dress and I am impressed how such a pattern be vintage patterns. I love your dress.

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    Nov 20, 2009, 03.36 AMby petitmoutonbleu

    i like it sooo much!!!! very fun to wear !!!

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    Jun 25, 2009, 07.47 AMby madebymanda

    I Love Love Love this dress!!! The Fabric, The Design, loves it all!!

  • E2bf03c197b2cde7114194ca9e5b510cb9f51d45_large

    Dec 7, 2008, 06.15 AMby africanprincess

    Wow! lovely dress. I love the African fabric used. I get my fabrics from www.ankarahotspot.com .They do great prints as well and very good quality. Keep up the good work

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    Nov 8, 2008, 08.56 AMby Lee Avant

    Great job! I’ve bought some vintage patterns as well and I find that they are always too big in the waist, not very fitted. Yours looks like it fits very nicely, did you have to take in the waist or did it fit as is?

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    Sep 17, 2008, 02.32 AMby mmmrphs

    Your description is spot on. Thank you for the inspiration!

  • A8f3882b9698d6e052d065a38f38cd96636a3727_large

    Aug 22, 2008, 02.19 AMby bricklaner

    Hi Cassie,

    Love the dress! Beth did a great job with the photos too. Thanks for giving me the heads up about this site – i’ve already started ‘queuing’ up several projects.


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    Aug 21, 2008, 07.42 PMby feliceskye

    Fan-tab!!! Love it!

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    Aug 16, 2008, 05.33 PMby yoshimi

    I love your dress! This is very beautiful and suits you so well. (I love your shoes, too.)

  • F8f6689b24535ef81ae6c4e0cff83f0bf234c180_large

    Aug 16, 2008, 01.06 PMby craftdinner

    love it!

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    Aug 13, 2008, 11.06 AMby corduroysarcasm

    i love love love this dress! as soon as i saw it i went on ebay to look for the vintage pattern. great job…i’m inspired!!

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    Aug 12, 2008, 03.52 PMby kortison

    This dress is great! Love the fabric and print! Really nice job :)

  • Missing

    Aug 12, 2008, 06.07 AMby somif

    this is adoooorable

  • A9cb5909e4e93a15d7f12343df4fc87e703cf10c_large

    Aug 11, 2008, 07.27 PMby carlatv

    It looks amazing on you. Great choice of fabric, it really makes the dress modern.

  • 7c30f6418f01dc532834a62c338538b3e026cd7a_large

    Aug 11, 2008, 05.22 AMby lybu

    Great. I like this fabric and shape

  • Missing

    Aug 10, 2008, 11.12 AMby jd98

    amazing result! great idea mixing the vintage style pattern with ethnic print!

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    Aug 10, 2008, 08.51 AMby lauriana

    I think your dress looks great! I’m a recent convict to the case of vintage styles myself, and I love how this pattern works with the fabric.

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    Aug 10, 2008, 07.22 AMby mrsbowles

    Fabulous idea and very nicely done. Love it!

  • 90d105748a966d3c6d5ed629993556373f155909_large

    Aug 10, 2008, 03.25 AMby cassielouise

    Thank you for your lovely comments! I was very pleased with the way the dress turned out… and exta pleased that it survived being washed (which is how I manage to ruin most of the things I make!).

    1 Reply
    • Missing

      Jul 16, 2013, 03.11 AMby insight

      What pattern did you use!

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    Aug 9, 2008, 11.23 PMby fabricaddict

    Wow your dress is amazing! it fits you perfectly, the fabric is fantastic and your twirling pics are so much fun!

  • Eeae17e9ee35a99a4eda77d4d18252532d471264_large

    Aug 9, 2008, 07.57 PMby littlebutton

    Your dress is gorgeous – quirky and stylish at the same time. I’m also loving those shoes BTW.

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    Aug 9, 2008, 05.59 PMby polychromatin

    Looks great! I’m also trying some old patterns form the 50ies. Your dress is super, great combination with that african fabric!

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    Aug 9, 2008, 03.26 PMby sunnyb64

    I agree with you— the print makes it look very updated! Nice job!

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    Aug 9, 2008, 03.12 PMby mjb14

    You look so beautiful. I love the print and style of the dress. I want one!

  • 99254863ca7e2e410955e8f6f01e96092c44cd1e_large

    Aug 9, 2008, 01.55 PMby starryjess

    This is so beautiful! You must be really pleased

    • This is a question
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