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Early 1940s Playsuit

Added Jul 15, 2011

by wearinghistory

San Diego Area, ...






My playsuit is actually a crop top and skirt that I “finished” about two years ago. One try-on revealed that the crop top was way too short, and whenever I would lift my arms my brassiere would be revealed. In actuality I didn’t read the instructions and hemmed it one inch where 1/4″ was actually allowed as it was supposed to have a bias binding. However, even after I took it out and fixed it it was still much too short, so this morning the eyelet ruffled trim was added to the bottom and luckily I had enough to go around the bottom of the skirt as well. I added yellow rick rack for contrast and to tie it all in together. I had actually clipped in my corners of the front, so in order to selvage that and still get the extra length I’ve got a bit of a scallop at center front.

I was rather iffy about the whole thing, but now after trying it on and wearing it for the afternoon I can say I love it and I’m so glad it was selvaged! The fabric is vintage rayon and the trims, with the exception of some of the rick rack, are new. The pattern I used was Simplicity 4321 (the picture of the outfit before I fixed it to be able to wear it is still up on Vintage Pattern Wiki). This is the second version of this pattern I have made- I previously made the dress. I do like this pattern quite a bit, however, both versions of this pattern have armscyes that are not very practical- lifting the arms causes the whole garment to raise up which can be a bit of a problem with the crop top (thus the ruffled eyelet trim was added). I did make changes because of my eyelet trim on my sleeves and neckline but I don’t remember now what they were. Despite these issues I do still like the pattern and will more than likely make another version of it in the future. Maybe the shorts are next! Too bad I don’t have any more of this fun rayon print!

You can see more about this project on my blog

Material Notes

Vintage rayon print yardage found at a vintage clothing sale.




Garment Type


Vintage pattern, Simplicity 4321

7 Comments Sign in to add a post

  • Img_3334_large

    Aug 1, 2012, 08.03 AMby Jodi Wade

    That third pic! Love it!! Gorgeous outfit.

  • 7477921d82b9cd62dad6abe75756cb0b30ea2282_large

    Jul 16, 2011, 02.41 PMby flowergirl22

    this reminds me of one of those old photos from the fifties,, where the colour has gone yellow,, looks great,,

  • Img_2769_large

    Jul 16, 2011, 01.17 AMby mollykatherine

    I LOVE it! the fabric choice is perfect!

  • Sin_t_tulo_large

    Jul 15, 2011, 10.19 PMby Samantha88


  • Prof_large

    Jul 15, 2011, 09.39 PMby abicairns

    i really really like this. I think that little accident was a blessing in disguise, that trim around the bottom really finishes it off nicely! I really dont think it would be quite as awesome without it :) I love the fabric, the print isnt something i’d normally pick up in a store but you’ve defiently inspired me to get some :) well done! xx

  • Img_6207_large

    Jul 15, 2011, 06.33 PMby The Tropical Sewist

    So sweet with the eyelet trim! It adds such a great dimension to the outfit – it looks like it was pre-thought-out and not a salvage technique at all!

  • Me_steampunk_avvie_large

    Jul 15, 2011, 04.55 PMby lanternwaste33

    This is very cute. Good job!

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