Hot! The “Grown-Up Molly” Outfit

The Facts
Fabric: Blue/white dot satiny something $7, grey suiting remnant $3 – both from Jo-Anns
Pattern: Simplicity 3688
Year: Contemporary reissue of a 1940s pattern
Notions: 7″ zip $2, two buttons from stash
Time to complete: 12 hours (24 eps of Archer)
First worn: Just for pictures.
Wear again? Heck yes!
Total price: ~$13

So I have to start out by saying that I have never liked the look of this pattern envelope. It’s just blah. But I was convinced I had to have it after seeing Mena and Debi Fry make it up, and then Meg’s blouse put me over the top. I ended up winning a Simplicity giveaway from One Week One Pattern, and this was on my list. Of course I had completely forgotten that it was coming my way when the new themes were posted and I saw this challenge. So I panicked about what I would do…until my winnings came in the mail and I rejoiced that I had been so unintentionally forward thinking.

The next step was figuring out fabric. For some reason I couldn’t stop thinking about Molly, the American Girl Doll. I guess she was my first introduction to the 40s, and I just loved her story. Anyway, her many red, white and blue outfits made me think of this blue/white fabric in my stash that was originally going to be a lining for something (I can’t remember) I never made. And in my constant effort to never be too noticeable, I decided on another grey skirt – because you can never have too many IMHO, and I thought the pants were too difficult. Also, this particular grey suiting always seems to make it into the remnant bin at Jo-Anns, and I’ve rescued it three different times.

Husband thinks the top may be a bit much. I’m still on the fence. The neck is a bit too high for comfort, and the fabric is so slippery it comes un-tucked at every movement. The skirt also needs a good anti-static treatment, it was clinging to me like mad.

I was trying to find some Americana backgrounds for the photoshoot. We basically scoured our neighborhood for cute houses with flags up. I’m afraid my victory curls were an epic failure, my hair is just too long I think, but I put on lipstick! I get points for trying, right?



Liz has been sewing since April 2011 but has been crafty all her life. Her full-time job is as a museum curator at a smallish institution, where her DIY skills often come in handy. Liz likes to sew while watching TV, which she uses to measure the amount of time it takes to finish.


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  1. Hi Liz, yes in deed, score. I love the skirt. I bet you could change up the top and add apellum and let hang out, it would very flattering, I struggle with slippery material, but it looks great when it can hang and go with the flow.

    • Thanks, Krista the peplum is a great idea! As it is, it doesn’t look very flattering when untucked, but I could work on that!

  2. Ha! As soon as I saw your title I knew you were referencing the American Girl. I’m glad I’m not the only one who liked those ;-) (Though I used to read them and get grumpy and say “Historical clich√©! Over-simplifying history!”)

    I like the blouse and skirt, but I agree the fabrics not really working. Something a little less shiny and clingy perhaps? And just cut the neckline lower? (which is exactly what I am going to do with my 1940s blouse).

    • Lol. I dunno, I like them for at least having messages and lessons. There are very few toys that actually get children to learn and think about the world.

      I’m ripping out the neckline as soon as I get a chance. It’s just too irritating.

  3. I like the whole look Liz, I could tell you had made an attempt at 40’s hair – nice one. I think the blouse is sweet, and the skirt – I think you should wear this outfit with pride, right after you have pressed the seams open on your skirt properly!! x

    • Lol thanks, Trish. I usually skip it, but I did try to press them open for once! But of course, I was in a hurry and they just weren’t having it. I’ll have to give it another try when I do some mending.

      • Trust me – pressing as each seam open as you sew makes your garments look so much better! It helps also to be using nice soft natural fibres like wool and cotton (etc) too!

  4. You done awesome , Liz

  5. So pretty , great job

  6. Great styling! You should try the pants– they’re really easy, aside from the fitting, and seem to look great on everyone who makes them.

    • Thanks, Lee! I have been thoroughly convinced to try the pants after everyone has raved about them this challenge. Just need to find the right fabric!

  7. Love this! I was thinking about Molly too. My daughter used to love American Girls. Very pretty outfit!

  8. Very cute outfit! I agree with Krista – a peplum might be the solution for the slippery blouse that doesn’t stay tucked in. What material is the skirt made of that it clinged to you so much?

  9. You look so pretty in your creation.

  10. I was going to say I love the hang of your skirt, actually dammit I’m still going to say this even if you think needs anti-staticing (I just invented a word). And I love the colour and shape of that top, though I can understand that if you want to wear it more often the neckline might feel a little high. Looks fab though and hats off to you finding backgrounds and styling your hair and make-up to fit the theme so well. You look brilliant!

  11. I LOVED Molly!! She was my favorite American Girl :) I adore your outfit – the blouse is stunning on you! I like that you’ve paired it with the skirt – it lets the blouse fabric shine :)