And How

by Erin on February 19, 2009

I know I keep harping on and on about how tired I am of winter, but one of the reasons for said fatigue is that I have been wearing basically the EXACT SAME THING for several months: a circle skirt (with a waistband), tights, t-shirt, and cardigan sweater. This is fine, mostly: it's comfortable, you can have lots of fun with skirt prints and bright tights, it's warm and layerable, and so and so forth. BUT I AM TIRED OF SKIRTS AND WANT TO WEAR SOME DRESSES PLS OK?

I have a few dresses that are good for winter, nice wool, corduroy, heavy cotton and so on, but my favorite kind of dress is in a nice light cotton, preferably in a conversation print. Something with short sleeves, and a little collar, and which does not require any more accessorizing than finding a pair of shoes.

A dress like, say, this one, which I was DESPONDENT to find is not in my size, at Lanetz Living (click on the image to visit the site):


Butterick 7272

So. I NEED this. I've started a search for it, and with any luck (and/or bribery, if you have a copy of this one you don't need) someday I WILL MAKE THIS. YES. I WILL.

(And what's with ALL THE CAPS? I think I am falling under the influence of THIS.)

Also — I'm a little worried about the expressions on the faces of the women in this picture. I think that Blue-Stripe Woman has just announced her intention of going over and slapping the bedickens out of someone, and White-Dress Woman is both worried about the emergent crazy of Blue-Stripe Woman and really, really hoping that the slapping will actually happen.

{ 30 comments… read them below or add one }

Libby Fife February 19, 2009 at 8:01 am

Blue Stripe Lady looks like she is getting ready to pound that other gal with the book-the written word is not DEAD!!!!!!!!!

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QueenSH February 19, 2009 at 8:16 am

I spent most of my day yesterday searching for vintage dress patterns. I found a few and ordered them. I hope you find this pattern, it looks like it would sew up lovely.

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Stephanie in AR February 19, 2009 at 8:19 am

I bought my first vintage reproduction pattern at the Hancock pattern sale this past weekend. Cannot wait to begin sewing.If you would – there is a lovely dress pictured on another site. Could you or the other readers point me in the direction of a pattern? The page is here:http://mommylife.net/archives/2009/02/photofiddle_-_g.htmlIn a different fabric (that one isn’t bad either) – the swishiness calls…

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caseykoester February 19, 2009 at 8:57 am

I like this pattern, too. I also always have to laugh at your commentaries about the models. You think up such hilarious scenarios! I’d buy a ticket to see Blue-Stripe Woman duke it out with her adversary! :)

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HollyP February 19, 2009 at 10:26 am

What about a jumper? I love a nice jumper with a ribbed turtleneck sweater, boots and tights in the chilly weather.

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Cookie February 19, 2009 at 11:16 am

I shall keep my eyes peeled for that one. (Where did that gruesome phrase come from, anyway?) I myself am still looking for a pattern which you were kind enough to put out an SOS for once. Much to my dismay, someone called Nora JS has it pictured in her flicker file, and it’s even in a comfy roomy size (16) so it could be sized down instead of up. But wherever I post this plea….silence falls. Tell me, is this really THAT great a pattern??? Hard to think most people would absolutely swoon for (AND HORDE) it! But I think it would look good in white with red top-stitching and red shoes.http://www.flickr.com/photos/norajs/3104731045/Pray for me. And Butterick 2241.

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Nathalie February 19, 2009 at 11:17 am

Hi Erin, if you want to broaden your search, there’s an identical 50s Anne Adams pattern — same bodice; only difference is the skirt, which is same shape, but 4-gore. It’s Anne Adams #4778. I’ve just bought it and it hasn’t arrived yet, but if you have no luck with your search, I’d be happy to copy it for you (it’s a size 17).

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public emily February 19, 2009 at 11:37 am

Bedickens! BEDICKENS!

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Anonymous February 19, 2009 at 11:38 am

The book in Stripey’s hand is entitled “The Beginner’s Guide to Contortionism,” and she is about to show Whitey what she has learned, after reading just the first chapter!Alternatively, the book is entitled “Human Semaphor Antics” and they are both trying a few things out….–kim p.

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Theresa February 19, 2009 at 11:38 am

Erin and Cookie – I will keep an eye out for both. They are both lovely. I really like white dress ladies hair.

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Theresa February 19, 2009 at 11:42 am

Will this work? http://www.butterick.com/item/B5209.htm??tab=dressespage=3

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Anonymous February 19, 2009 at 11:47 am

Miss Striped-Dress is saying, “Look at how tiny my waist is. Don’t you wish you had a waist this small?” And Miss White-Dress responds, “Mine is as small. How else could I squeeze into the same dress?” I am just wondering which will turn blue and pass out first.–K

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Cookie February 19, 2009 at 12:27 pm

Thank you, Theresa. I may be reading into this, but I’m not sure that Blue Stripe Lady isn’t really a teenage male. He looks like a friend of mine from high school. But with more stretched out, Gumby-style arms.

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sewducky February 19, 2009 at 1:18 pm

I’ll keep and eye out for both of you (and I have a glass eye for this purpose, in fact, that I carry in my pocket and put it atop other items) but my vintage pattern shopping is sort of bah-humbuggy at the moment.Get skants. They serve well.

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Desiree February 19, 2009 at 1:33 pm

You always find the best patterns! I absolutely love that blue striped dress. You totally nailed the facial expressions, too. The anticipatory, yet worried look on white dresses face kills me.

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Nathalie February 19, 2009 at 1:33 pm

sewducky, love your skants!… and I’ll be taking you up on your offer as soon as I’ve finished the dreaded, neverending deadline…

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Anonymous February 19, 2009 at 1:37 pm

The dress is lovely, but I can’t stop staring at their tiny tiny waists. Eighteen inch waist? Smaller? I have read some of the history of corsets and some women laced so tight that their lower ribs actually touched. I’m thinking perhaps that is what is going on here.

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The Slapdash Sewist February 19, 2009 at 1:54 pm

I was going to recommend Butterick 5209 as well (Theresa beat me to it). It’s a vintage reissue with the same midriff shape and same general bodice but without the collar. You could redraft the bodice to include the collar, if you’re into that sort of thing. This is on my cutting table waiting to be laid out!

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Theresa February 19, 2009 at 3:18 pm

Slapdash – Great minds think alike. Maybe she could use the color from the olive dress withthe liberty trim? Cookie – you may be right…

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sewducky February 19, 2009 at 4:16 pm

You know I looked at my vintage patterns that are actually in my bust size and then did a retest of my torso.Uh…no undergarments on or anything (and I do wear corsets and girdles) and Simplicty 1832 from the 40′s says bust of 38, waist 32 and hip of 41. Then Simplicity 1076 from the 50′s is B38, w32, h41 and from the 60s: 38-30-40 which is my measurements, naturally.When I was young and skinny, B.C. (before children) I was a 32-17-33 naturally, so the patterns always seem to be normal for me.

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Cel Petro February 19, 2009 at 4:17 pm

Blue striped dress–her right hand does show movement…however, might her red hair have influenced your observation???

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Shaina February 19, 2009 at 6:32 pm

Okay, my fabric guru, I have a question for you!Where do you find your light cottons for summer dresses? I’ve been wanting to sew some light, relatively unstructured dresses for spring, but have a hard time finding any neat cotton prints that aren’t quilt weight. I’m at the point of desperation where I’m going to go to Goodwill and start cutting up old sheets. If I’m looking online, what do I search for to make sure that it’s a light, drape-y cotton, not something stiff and heavy? Thank you!

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Erin February 19, 2009 at 7:21 pm

Hey Shaina! I’ve had good luck searching for cotton poplins and sateens — they have a little more (okay, a lot more) heft than quilting cottons. I pretty much have to buy them online or at the Vogue Fabrics in Evanston, though, because JoAnns and Hancocks have very little, if any. Cotton shirting can make nice dresses, too. Good luck!

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lulu February 19, 2009 at 8:42 pm
Anonymous February 22, 2009 at 7:40 am
AuntieShel February 22, 2009 at 3:21 pm

Erin, you are so funny, you see a story in everything. After five hours of doing homework for nursing school, I needed a break and logged on your site. Just the break I needed as it turned out. Loved the blog and comments on the dirigible hostess. This dress is so you, you must have it. Good luck!!

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San Antonio Sue February 23, 2009 at 8:51 am

Erin, stop complaining about winter! Here it is already in the 70′s and 80′s. I bought a pair of sweatpants for pj bottoms and only wore them twice! I’m just not ready for summer yet.

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La BellaDonna February 23, 2009 at 3:29 pm

{waves hand} Erin, if it turns up, I would LOVE to make a copy of it! I’m looking for it in a bust 36 or 38; I’d buy it in a 34 … and feel put upon while I enlarged it. WANT.

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Anonymous February 26, 2009 at 2:52 am

anonymous butterfly says this…to all you ladies looking for the dress from butterick 7272…one dress is blue the other dress white. I may have something to help you thats pretty close to this one…in your search box type http://www.butterick.com/item/B5209, then click search. the only thing I see a bit different is theres no collar on this one…the lady is wearing a floral dress with pink hat in view B. I ordered it myself waiting for it to get to my address,anxious to start this right away..2 different sizes..AA(6-8-10-12)….EE(14-16-18-20)

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Anonymous March 17, 2009 at 10:26 pm

This resembles the bodice of vintage slips. Perhaps you could take a vintage slip as a model and create your own pattern?

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