Hot! The 11th hour outfit | Debi Fry



The Facts

Fabric: Brushed cotton (vintage duvet cover) – ~£1

Pattern: Free online tutorial from Gertie's New Blog for Better Sewing on making a gathered skirt, part 1 and 2
Year: c. 1950's
Notions: Vintage zipper — ~£.25
Time to complete: 4 hours
First worn: January 2011
Wear again? Maybe

Total Cost: ~£1.25

When I heard about the blue floral theme, I was very excited and had grand plans for this week!  I was going to use some fabulous vintage blue crepe fabric I have to make a smashing 1940's swing dress: 


I, um, waited until the last moment and then discovered that my vintage crepe fabric had two very large dark red stains on it (looks like rust, is that possible?)!  Arrrrrgggghhhh!


So I spent the better part of a day figuring out how to handle this.  Some of it did come up with lukewarm water and handwashing but I think I am going to make a trip to the dry cleaners. 

So, I got out my only other floral piece of fabric (a vintage duvet cover) that is a lovely cream with pinks and blues (there is blue in it, I swear! hehehehe) to see what I could do with it (and after carefully pretreating and really examining the fabric!)


I remembered Gertie had done a tutorial awhile back on making a gathered 1950's style skirt.  In fact, when I saw this fabric that's what I immediately wanted to make with it and then pair it with a lovely 1950's style cashmere sweater.  I went through her blog archives and found the tutorial which consists of making your own pattern pieces (there are only two!).  Et Viola…instant 1950's outfit!  I like how it turned out:


What about you? Have you had any vintage fabric surprises?  Have you ever had your sewing plans foiled at the last minute?  What did you do?


Debi from My Happy Sewing Place

Debi Fry LOVES vintage patterns. She started sewing in 2009 and has been going since. In 2011, she participated in the Sew Weekly challenge and looks forward to the new challenges that lie in store!


Comments are closed.

  1. Beautiful! That cashmere sweater is amazing!!

  2. Love the skirt and sweater combo – really nice!!

  3. Oh! I empathize with you on that lovely blue fabric. Hope those stains can be removed! This is a sweet combo and lovely skirt!

  4. Thanks Sarah! It’s from the wonderful vintage shop with rows of cashmere (w. Armstrong’s)!! This seemed like the perfect opportunity to avail myself of such a goodie :-)

  5. ah, thanks so much Sarah!

  6. If that stain really is rust, the dry cleaner won’t be able to get it out. You need to use a rust remover product. They contain hydroflouric acid, which is kind of scary sounding, but it works. You just have to use it fast and rinse it promptly to prevent camage to the fabric.

  7. Yes my sewing plans get spoiled all the time but it is usually because someone comes over or my Hunny wants to go some place. LOL What a beautiful sweater and I like the print on the skirt. It is cute and I am going to have to check out Gertie’s web site again to see what all she has on it.

  8. BTW when I have a stain on something that it tough to get out I put dish soap directly on it. You have to get the kind that does not have bleach in it but if you rub it on and leave a day or two it usually takes all stains away (sometimes even blood) and I have used that for years. There have only been a few stains that won’t come out over the years.

  9. Great! It is unfortunate that the blue fabric had a bad surprise, but you are great and fixed the time, I love the skirt and cashmere sweater, but I love, love, love the stage.

  10. Foiled sewing plans? Like all the freaking time. (and I say that with love in my heart.) Trying to sew with an inquisitive toddler is like trying to sew through an obstacle course. Add to that that I’m still learning…well, I’m often derailed by my lack of expertise. Ha! But I’m working on it!
    I love your outfit so much. I hope you wear it all over the place! :-)

  11. Well done Debi, it’s really gorgeous and I particularly like the hem line, it looks so polished!

  12. Great idea for the stain removal! thanks!! :-)

  13. Thanks for the advice…I’m not sure if the stain is actually rust–I’ll have to investigate further!

  14. Thanks so much Rosy! :-) I’m pretty in love with it too!!

  15. Thanks so much! I can’t imagine trying to sew with a toddler on my lap! You must get some interesting seams sometimes :-) What a doll!

  16. This is so cute! I was sitting here, about to go out in my good-enough-but-not-stunning jeans and t-shirt… but then I saw this. You made this combination look so adorable that you inspired me to be brave and go change into a skirt I recently made myself. Great outfit, and gorgeous skirt!