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Picnic Dress: Simplicity 3965

Added Nov 23, 2010

by sewaholic

Burnaby, Canada






Another dress made up of vintage fabric in a vintage pattern! I was inspired by a dress Betty Draper wore in season 2 of Mad Men, to a picnic with her family.
This fitted, full-skirted dress is from the 1950s made of beautiful vintage acetate floral fabric. It’s underlined,with a hand-picked zipper and a waist stay. I documented several of the tricky construction steps and wrote up tutorials on the zipper and the waist stay, if you’re interested!
More on the blog here, plus plenty of posts on the making of this dress!

Material Notes

100% vintage acetate




Spring, Summer
Garment Type
Classic, Romantic, Vintage
Blends, Rayon, Silk, Taffeta

15 Comments Sign in to add a post

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    Mar 24, 2014, 08.52 AMby Priyanka21993

    how can i learn to sew it. please help i wanna make it

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    Mar 24, 2014, 08.52 AMby Priyanka21993

    how can i learn to sew it. please help i wanna make it

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    Jan 14, 2011, 03.47 PMby Testosterone

    Stellar choices in pattern, fabric, and finishing details.

    Sewaholic, you are what happens when great taste and great skills reside in the same body.

    Keep amazing us, please!

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    Jan 14, 2011, 04.58 AMby tashmopolitan

    Thanks, ill try there….I have some simalar patterns but i love the neckline and the back on this one. Thanks again!

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    Jan 12, 2011, 10.32 PMby tashmopolitan

    Ahhh…i desperately want to know where i can get this pattern! I love it! Did you get it from a website?

    4 Replies
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      Jan 14, 2011, 03.44 AMby sewaholic

      Ah, thanks! It’s a vintage pattern I bought from Etsy, the pattern number is simplicity 3965. I’ve had so many people ask where I got this pattern! I’d suggest browsing etsy for vintage dress patterns, there will be lots of similar, full-skirted styles. Good luck!

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      Feb 17, 2011, 03.29 AMby tashmopolitan

      I Found it Yesterday on ebay! Already cut….but exactly in my measurements! Cant wait to start! Thanks for the inspiration!

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      Feb 22, 2011, 05.14 AMby sewaholic

      Oh wow, lucky you! that’s awesome you were able to find a copy, and in your size too! How fantastic! I’d love to see your version of the dress when you’re done :)

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      Mar 26, 2011, 03.45 PMby tashmopolitan

      Finished 3965….posted it today! I followed your tutorial for a hand picked zipper! It turned out so well! Thanks!

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    Jan 11, 2011, 03.54 AMby Dupioni

    So very pretty!

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    Dec 8, 2010, 02.23 AMby mollykatherine

    I LOVE this dress! it looks a lot like a few that i’ve been working on, but after looking at your tutorial, a lot better made! thanks for all the tip, i’ll apply them to the next dress I make :)

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    Nov 24, 2010, 08.29 PMby lkeogan

    Ahhh I love it :)

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    Nov 24, 2010, 09.31 AMby zaarissima

    I would like to make it! it is so beautiful!!!

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    Nov 24, 2010, 12.38 AMby aluckmann

    Simply lovely, I want one!

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    Nov 24, 2010, 12.33 AMby magentaworstblood

    Oh. My-God. This is so beautiful. I love it. WANT.

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    Nov 23, 2010, 10.31 PMby katie2belts

    The fabric is very pretty. Well done, I’d love to attempt something like this but I think it might be too complex for me at the moment!

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    Nov 23, 2010, 09.36 PMby runningwithscissors1

    Very cute! I love it!

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    Nov 23, 2010, 08.29 PMby treacle-toes

    Very pretty!

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    Nov 23, 2010, 07.44 PMby analogue

    This dress is really pretty and fits you perfectly. Great job!

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