I'm a sewing enthusiast in Beacon, New York, with a love of all things retro. This site is all about tutorials, tips, inspiration, and lots of spirited discussion about sewing as it relates to fashion history, pop culture, body image, and gender. My first book, Gertie's New Book for Better Sewing, is now out from STC Craft/Melanie Falick Books! Also look for my line "Patterns by Gertie" from Butterick.
I made a dress and a cat bed! I'm really more excited about the cat bed, can we talk about that first?
My mom gave me this pattern a couple years ago. It's Simplicity 9065, now out of print. (But available here and elsewhere on the web!)
I finally made it up last weekend, thinking that little Henry Higgins needed a place to hang out in my sewing room. I was very proud of it, and then a little disappointed when he ignored it. But lo and behold! This morning I walked into the room and what did I see?
How cute is that?
I'm so pleased he likes it! He spent all morning there. I made it in a simple blue ticking stripe. Very masculine, don't you think?
Okay, the dress!
It's McCall's 6503, View A, and made with another fabulous Ascher print I got at Paron's. (They have more! Call them and tell 'em Gertie sent you. They're quite familiar with me by now! 212-768-3266)
I loved the pattern itself. Simple, slightly 40s inspired, and super cute in the ruffle version. It's one of those easy breezy summer dresses that you find yourself reaching for all the time.
I wore it out to dinner last night.
I added my own little design feature: a tiny pocket!
The easiest way to make a pocket like this is to cut out a template--without seam allowances--from a sturdy paper. I used an old manilla folder. Cut the fabric out with the template, leaving about 1/4" on the sides and bottom, and 5/8" on top. Press the seam allowances over the template, so they're turned in crisply. Topstitch the hem at the top of the pocket. Apply to your dress by edgestitching. That's it!
This dress has no linings, just a neckline facing and bindings around the armholes. I went old-school and pinked my seam allowances.