Friday, March 21, 2014

Retro Sewing

By Jeannie Watt

I've been absent from the blog for a few months, having finally popped back in during February to share my scary slippers. I started a new job last fall and it's been a huge time suck--much greater than I'd anticipated. Add a few book deadlines to the mix and, well, something had to give. was housework.

During this time of settling into the job and being terrorized by deadlines, however, I have become deeply involved in a new hobby that allows my brain some vacation time--I collect and sew vintage patterns.

If you will be kind enough to understand that the pattern illustrations are purposely elongated, and my body is the opposite of elongated, I'll share with you some of the patterns I've collected and sewn over the past year.

From the early 1930s:

The pattern:
The reality:
Yes, I wore it to work.

From the early 1940s:

The pattern:

The reality:
I really am happy here, but the sun is frying my eyes, which I am desperately trying to keep open.

From the 1950s:

The pattern:

The more compact reality:

My next project is also from the 1940s. I plan to start it next week.

I'm thinking of making an entire vintage wardrobe to wear to RWA Nationals this year. Of course, I also have to write a few books and finish the school year at the same time, however I'm hopeful that I may be able to pull it off. (If you're interested in following my progress, please join me on my sewing  blog.)

It's great to be back!



Mary Preston said...

You are so clever. Loving the retro patterns.

Rachel Brimble said...

Wow, fabulous! I love vintage clothes but would have no idea where to start with the sewing. I knit…but not particularly well!

You wear it well, Jeannie!

Rachel x

Jeannie Watt said...

Mary--I'm addicted to vintage patterns. The sad thing is that I remember wearing some of the vintage patterns when they were new. (Talking 70s, not 40s.)

Jeannie Watt said...

Hi Rachel--There's a lot of vintage knitting going on, too. In a side note, the only sweater I tried to knit for myself ended up fitting my husband...and it was a little loose on him.

Anonymous said...

Welcome back, Jeannie,

I love all of you retro sewing projects.

Anonymous said...

From MarcieR

I love your dresses. I wish I could sew. On your sewing blog you had a pic of a sundress that I absolutely love.

marelou said...

Awesome! Love your retro looks. I wish I kept up with the lessons my mom gave me. I can only do hand sewing.

Unknown said...


This is awesome! I'm going to make a point of finding you at RWA this year, just to see the dresses. I love retro-style dresses, especially ones people have made themselves.

Have I see posts from you on

Colleen C. said...

Wow, that is a wonderful talent you have...

penney said...

I never did like sewing but my older sister does she makes a lot of her clothes. she also can kit beautiful and crochet too. I crochet and knit some but I like embroidery too and counted cross stitch still love reading!
Those dresses are beautiful!

Unknown said...

Jeannie, I'm a late comer to this post but we are definitely going to need a daily fashion show at RWA! These dresses are beautiful!!

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