Hot! The “Girl Detective” Dress

I just love Nancy Drew.  The stories are dated, but they sure are amusing!

The original book was published in 1930, so my 1928 Vintage Vogue reproduction seemed like the perfect silhouette.  Over the years, the cover art and illustrations have changed, but I would say my overall favorites are from the 1940s (big surprise, right?!).

But in an effort to explore other decades, I decided to go with the original look.

Nancy is often pictured wearing the color blue, but I did not have anything suitable on hand.  I did, however, have this gray rayon crepe that I rediscovered and thought it would work well with the pattern (even if it is not the perfect match for Ms. Drew).

I did not have time to make myself a cloche hat to complete the look, so I thought that a scarf made from the remnants of my rayon would work as a headscarf.

This morning when I put the dress on, I was worried that it looked too costumey, which is completely ridiculous considering that I feel completely at home in a poofy crinoline.  Well, the dress is incredibly lightweight and breezy – just perfect for a hot day, and super comfy.  I think I will keep it!

• The Facts

⁃ Fabric:  Rayon Crepe

⁃ Pattern:  Vogue 2535 (from Sew Weekly Pattern Swap)

⁃ Year:  1928

⁃ Notions:  rayon seam binding; snaps; hook & eye

⁃ Time to complete:  One week.

⁃ First worn:  August 30, 2012

⁃ Wear again?  Yes!

⁃ Total price:   The fabric is so old, I really have no idea.  Everything but the thread was pulled from my stash!


Laura Mae

Laura Mae adores sewing and knitting, mostly vintage or vintage-inspired patterns. She hopes to inspire others to create lovely and lasting garments that speak of a past era and yet remain timeless and elegant.


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  1. That dress is so pretty. I love the final photo in particular, the headscarf works so well with it. I love how many detectives we’ve got represented in posts this week :)

  2. Oh my gosh I love it! When I was doing the pictures for my outfit this week I was having moments of Nancy Drew impressions and I couldn’t figure out why. This style is why!!! In the fog since reading many a ND mystery as a child, I kept telling myself Nancy Drew was much later than the cape-top style, but I was wrong!!

    Well done on this. It looks gorgeous and plenty breezy!

  3. Isn’t it amazing: the cape, the scallops, the high-low hem….so 1928 and so 2012 at the same time. Even thought it’s not your usual era, it looks lovely on you.
    I was a huge Nancy Drew fan back when I first started reading on my own, and my grandmother bought me a whole box of ’40s-’50s editions from a garage sale. Where oh where did those books ever go?

  4. There is nothing I don’t love about this. Nothing. Excuse me while I have a jealous tantrum: that pattern is divine

  5. Gorgeous! I love that you used the original covers as inspiration

  6. I don’t feel there in anything costume-y about this: it’s just a fantastic dress for hot weather, so elegant! Absolutely gorgeous.

  7. This is lovely- worthy of a Susan Kandel novel!

  8. Fabulous, and not at all costume-ey. I would wear this all the time. Love it!

  9. Beautiful beautiful beautiful…Oh I hope you are doing the Gatsby Challenge I really do.

  10. Very pretty! You always make such beautiful vintage style dresses. I really admire your skill and your photos are always so lovely.