Friday, June 28, 2013

Gertie Goes 60s (Simplicity 1609 Finished!)

I finished my shift dress! They aren't kidding when they call this pattern "Jiffy." It goes together super quickly.



I surprised myself by picking out this pattern, and then surprised myself some more by hacking 4" off the length to make it mini. I mean, if you're going to do 60s, do it right!

I made it in a stretch plaid cotton, available in my little shop. I kept the center front seam because there is some VERY subtle bust shaping there. I'm glad I did because I needed extra seam allowances--this pattern is tight! I'm so used to the Big Four patterns having lots of ease that I usually size down from my actual measurements and make a 14. That's what I did with this and it was super tight across the hips. (Yeah, I didn't make a muslin. I'm a 60s rebel without a cause!) I let out the side seams and center front seam and it fit perfectly.

It's still pretty snug in the bodice, though. I'd like to make another version, adding ease to the side seams so it's more of a loose shift.

I got into the spirit with the hair and makeup too! I did a bouffant with side-swept bangs, cateye  liner, and pink lipstick.

I think I will make a small swayback adjustment for my next version.

I have to say, making and wearing this dress has given me an entirely new appreciation for 60s fashion. How liberating it must have been! Suddenly you were getting rid of your girdle, wearing bikini underwear, showing your thighs, actually having some room to move in your dress, feeling sassy. Very cool.

I'm excited to make another version, like right away. I got this lime green stretch gingham for the shop and am going to use it to make the version with the Peter Pan collar next.

I'm feeling incredibly inspired by this pattern. Perhaps this will be my grooviest summer ever!

77 comments:

  1. Your dress turned out great! I know, it's fabulous how quickly you can get this dress whipped up. Can't wait to see your gingham version! I'm wanting to make myself more versions, also. This pattern is definitely a great go-to for summer!

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  2. I graduated from a PUBLIC high school in 1969. Believe me when I say we couldn't get away with the very short skirts.
    The rule was: While kneeling, our skirts had to (at least) touch the floor all around, or we were sent home to change.
    On another note: No slacks/pants/trousers were allowed on campus or at any school function.
    Ahh, yes, the good old days.

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    1. Do you watch Mad Men? In a recent episode (set in '67) the 15-year-old girl interviewed at an exclusive girls' boarding school--wearing a mini skirt! I wondered if that would actually have happened . . .

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    2. I think that the rules applied to more conservative, Catholic schools but that affluent girls were definitely trendsetters and allowed to be. I thought Sally and her cohorts were exactly as I remembered them. (I was the one wearing a dumpy to the knee Catholic school uniform).

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    3. you rolled the skirt up as soon as you were off school grounds. at my public school, our skirts had to touch the floor when we kneeled down, which Miss Kilgore made us do if she thought the skirt was too short.

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  3. Oh, wow! Love!

    I might have to... rip this off wholesale. So foxy.

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  4. You're not kidding when you say this is tight. I got lazy and cut out a 10 instead of doing my usual grading from 8 at the bust to a 12 in the hips and man, was it snug. I'm still ripping seams...You've given me inspiration to pick this up again--looks great!

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  5. This dress looks fabulous on you and very figure flattering.

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  6. I love this look on you! You're making me reconsider this pattern as well. I always look at it when I'm in the fabric shop and wonder if it's something I'd wear. SO cute!

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  7. Gertie looks good in the sixties!

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  8. I was loving this when you introduced the pattern and fabric. I wore similar styles myself in the 60's. I think a collar/bow in a contrasting color would really add the 'wow' factor.

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  9. This dress looks great on you! I might have to look for this pattern - usually shift dresses look like sacks on me, but this one looks like it could work!

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  10. Those minis of the 60's! I think I'm older than you, Gail Ann, but I do remember a yellow flowery pleated miniskirt I wore then. My legs would let me down now, I wouldn't dare!

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  11. Really cute! I love this in plaid!

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  12. I actually bought this pattern recently. Looks great!

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  13. Wow, is this adorable! I am another one of your readers feeling inspired to give this pattern a go. This is very outside my comfort zone, style-wise, but it is just so cute on you, I might have to try it! We seem to be of similar size and shape, so, if it works for you, maybe it will work for me, too. Totally love the plaid. And your hair is just awesome.

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  14. You look awesome! This pattern is so flattering on you and I love the mod aesthetic!

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  15. so fun to see you in a sixties dress! fun and different, in a good way! sixties fashion are very young and fresh, and i totally get what you mean with how liberating it must have felt! but somehow, i am more attracted (strictly visually and esthetically speaking) to 40s and 50s fashions. they feel more sofisticated, somehow. but then there are some quite stunning mod dresses too!

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  16. super cute! I love the way it turned out!

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  17. Love it! You could do a brilliant version long with the plain neck and brooch and look very late 50s early 60s crossover. Or a detachable "fur"collar for winter. Very chic.

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  18. Its super cute. Makes me want to go buy the pattern.

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  19. I'm actually making this dress right now, did you line this? I saw your post on what kind of linings to use but, how do you add a lining to a patterned dress that doesn't already have one?

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  20. This looks SOOOOO great on you! I've been looking forward to your version, and you did not disappoint - LOVE IT! =D

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  21. Holy smokes, that is a cute look on you!

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  22. Really,really cute.

    And, I see you're wearing clogs but I keep wanting you to post a video of yourself singing "These boots are made for walking."

    Brava!

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  23. That's really cute on you!

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  24. What is a swayback adjustment?

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  25. Hi there, it is so fun to see you trying a pattern outside your normal style. Early '60's patterns are my current craze, so I like this dress very much. Hope you have fun in it and can't wait to see the gingham version!

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  26. I'd really love to see the detail of how you do the swayback adjustment on the next one. My DD is swaybacked.

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  27. That was fast! and no muslin?!?! Scandal! ha ha...I just bought your book and I LOVE IT! You certainly know your stuff and eventually I want to sew every dress, shirt, and skirt from the patterns enclosed. Is it weird to say thank you for writing the book I've been dying to read? Well, thanks!

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  29. Did you know that in french, these dresses are called "three holes dresses"? Arms, head, eventually a bit of shaping and you're ready to go.

    About the feeling of liberation, according to my fashion history teachers, the 60's saw a generation of designers who actively rejected 50's rules and sofistication in favor of movement (yay, flat boots and ballet slippers! being able to run after your bus without wondering if you'll rip your skirt or break your leg!). This doesn't mean that those who chose to wear this were aware of it, except for the very beginning of the era, but it's surely what Mary Kant and her colleagues had in mind.
    It's also important to keep in mind that the 60's saw the rising of "teenage" culture (swinging london anyone?) and this kind of dress is clearly inspired by children's fashion.

    Anyway, sorry for the ranting. I'll just add that I just discovered your blog and I'm a big fan of your style!

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  30. I love your dress! And your hair.....that do looks great on you!

    My mom had a dress like this in yellow and white in the 60's and it was SHORT. I wasn't around then but I've seen pictures. Wigs were poplar too. I remember finding a picture of this woman with a short short dress, short blonde hair (mom's hair was dark) and with my mom's face. Proof mom had a life before me.

    I think I have to go find this pattern and make up one like mom's. Looks like fun! I got the legs.....I can rock it!

    Thanks for the inspiration!

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  31. Hi, Gertie!

    I just wanted to say how much I enjoy your blog. And...very excited that I just got your book today, Gertie's New Book for better Sewing! Keep up the good work! Love the dress!

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  32. Gertie, this dress is massively flattering on you!

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  33. My first thought when I saw the pictures of you..."boy, does she look FIERCE".
    I love the pattern and the way it looks.

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  34. Wow! You look fantastic. I really like the fabric choice.

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  35. Oh this is so great! I love that you've ventured into the 60s! You look great in both eras! The lack of special support garments is one of those things i love about 60s clothes. You might wear a slip and some control top stockings but other than that your pretty much footloose and fancy free!
    i sew mainly 60s type clothing and i normally take the darts out and shape with princess seams instead. and i love that you also brought the hem up. very cheeky!

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  36. Hello from Munich, Germany. I just found this Berlin Vintage Fashion Fair: http://www.toastandjam.de/. Might that be something for you?

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  37. I love the way this turned out! You look adorable as always. I'm glad to know that this pattern runs tight, I might try it out soon. Thanks for continuing to write and awesome and inspiring blog!

    -Melissa
    Scavenger Hunt

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  38. Hawt diggedy dawg. That's very cute. And stop adding fabric to your store! You're causing me marital problems!

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  39. Hey,
    great pictures and a sweet dress :)
    Love it!
    Kisses
    Tabea

    http://wolkedrei.blogspot.de/

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  40. Wow! That pattern turned out very striking in the black and white plaid. You look great in it.

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  41. Hi Gertie-
    New to your blog.. I am somewhat new to sewing-well, kind of... But I came across your patterns (I had ordered your B5882 and came across your blog) Earlier this week I started at the very beginning! And I am digging it!! I think you are amazing!!

    I am excited to try out the pattern... but before I do I need a little more practice (I have made 4 dresses and 1 skirt so far... 2 of the dresses used patterns-the other 2 and the skirt were... freestyle? no pattern, just measured and cut and pinned and so on.. the pattern dresses did not turn out too great... like I said.. need more practice)

    Either way-Just wanted to say Hi.. Hope you have a great weekend!!

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  42. You look incredibly good in that dress!

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  43. This post made my day. First, I love your blog and the dress looks great on you. The original version of this shift was my very first sewing project in home ec class in 1969. Seeing it again, and being enjoyed by a second generation makes me smile.;)

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  44. Making all side seams 1" has saved me on numerous occasions. It doesn't take much time and comes in handy enough to make it worth my time.

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    1. Ohhh, good tip for those of us who have never done a muslin! I paper fit sometimes.

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  45. Love 60s fashion, love your dress!

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  46. Love this in plaid! 60's fashion suits you well too!

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  47. Awesome dress, I love 60s fashion too :)

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  48. I loved this pattern the first time I saw it and I love it even more now. So gorgeous! I was ever sure of 60s styles on me but this seems to have a lot of shape to it. Now I just need to see if I can find it in Australia!

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  49. Love this on you - it's a really striking silhouette on you. I've got this - just need to make it!

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  50. And another dress that the green clogs go with perfectly...you look fab.

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  51. Love it! I've already put this pattern on my list! And that green is going to look fab!

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  52. This dress turned out WAY better than I expected having seen the planning post. I've been stuck watching old Dark Shadows episodes on youtube this summer, and just marveling about how UGLY those clothes were!!! But your version is why the shift was popular. It shows your curves and looks fabulous on you. Very flattering and I bet every woman looking at the pics mentally tries it on themselves.

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  53. I love it! 60s fashion is interesting and I'll shortly be joining you in trying it out.

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  54. Wow. You look really really different in the 60s. You look taller and slimmer. Not suggesting you looked short and fat before AT ALL but just saying the overall illusion is so different. Am I digging myself in very deep here? Moving on. That green gingham? In ? Love it. Although here in Australia, we wear school uniforms and almost all primary schools wear check gingham. Blue, green red.whatever. But that colour, in stretch? Perfect for the 60s shift.

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    1. Haha, no worries I get what you're saying. I do feel rather tall and thin in this dress!

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  55. Your dress is adorable, but I'm a little confused by your post. You said that you kept the center front seam for bust shaping, but then you say you left out the side seams and center front seam. Maybe I misread something?

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    1. Whoops! That was a rather confusing typo. Yes, I meant "let out."

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  56. I think she meant "let out" not "left out". :)

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  57. Whoa! that's great. I normally don't consider 60s patterns as the are not fitted enough but this one looks great.

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  58. Any chance you could elaborate about this swayback correction in a future post? I have a rather generous back end, and my dresses always get bunchy in the back!

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  59. I can't tell you how many of these type of dresses I made in the late 60s and early 70s. This pattern looks really familiar! I started sewing as a tween and with the ease of fitting this style and my thin body, I never had to fit any pattern. I have sewn off and on for years, but somehow forgot until recently, that my body has changed a lot in the last 40 years. The dress looks great.

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  60. Super cute Gertie! I love it. Will def be drafting up a little A-line number for the summer. I love the 60s xx

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  61. That looks so cute on you! I would love to see how you do your swayback adjustment, as I have the same issue.

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  62. Gertie - How would you do a FBA on this dress - would it be just the top side dart and lower the other dart or ??????? I'm stumped. Thank you. Donna

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  63. Love the dress and I think making it into a mini was a great move!

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  64. I think this baby-doll look is totally hot right now. It's no wonder you're trekking down that path. Love this look as it's a fresh look on the waist and away from the hipster era.

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  65. Awesome! I just bought this pattern and was really psyched to make it. Thanks for trying it out for me and detailing the process! I also bought the Vogue pattern you mentioned a few posts ago, so I can't wait to see how that goes when you do it. Thanks for testing everything out for me. I know you had me in mind. ;)

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  66. LOVE the plaid fabric!! SO cute.

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  67. I bought this pattern also but I am having problems sewing it, I am a beginner sewer I guess jiffy does not mean beginner. I am stuck on the facing, I have it all sewn on but I don't know how to turn the facing.. Ugh.. I love the material you used for this pattern

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Thanks for your comments; I read each and every one! xo Gertie

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