Saturday, 12 January 2013

Vintage Simplicity 9970

Or is it?

I was given this pattern by my mother-in-law. She'd found a bunch of patterns going cheap and bought them for me. Out of the lot This was the one that had most appeal. It's a simple shift dress with three different neckline and sleeve choices. However I can't seem to find reference to this pattern anywhere! Do a search and not one image comes up for this one, well I suppose it is a 1972 pattern and I can well imagine most people wanting to get rid of anything from 1972. However, it's a gem, a lovely pattern. It's single size 14 - I am not a 14, but with a little bit of alteration...

I decided that I'd have a go at making a dress based on this pattern with some fabric that I got from a charity shop for £2. However I wanted to change the neckline somewhat.

I saw this dress, worn by Nigella in her last series and really liked the collar detail. So I decided to draft a new neckline and collar and add contrast cuffs as well. The dress is longer than it appears on the pattern envelope and even after shortening it's still a bit longer. I've also kept the more A line skirt shape as I know it suits me and it's easier for work.
I measured the pattern pieces and made alterations to the sizing, the hips were fine as i'm a pear shape, but I removed 1cm off each side seam (4cm) total, and increased the waist dart widths by 1cm each side, tapering to the original dart at the hip and in a bit at the bust. the bust dart was OK.
I traced the pattern pieces and made a new neckline and with the help of my pattern book. I drafted the collar.

It's taken me quite a while to make the dress, mainly because I decided part way through making that I needed a lining, and the time it took to make the alterations to the pattern. I didn't really follow the pattern instructions as I've made a few dresses now. I am quite proud of the collar, it rolls nicely and sits well. I think I will catch it to the dress at the back as it gets caught up when i put my jacket on.


  1. Looks lovely. You are very talented to be able to take an idea and make it you own. I suspect that you will be publishing your own patterns before long :)

  2. You are one clever lady. I've made garments in the past but would find it challenging to alter the pattern. It looks very professional, worth taking the time over :)

  3. You dress is wonderful and fit for Nigella!

  4. It looks lovely, the neckline suits you and looks great with your hairstyle. I always think you are very brave to alter a pattern so much but it's great that it gives you something really original and 'your own'.

    Have a great week

    Jan x

  5. Beautiful dress!! Love the style.

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