Frocktober inspiration – big 4 vintage and retro dresses

Feel like carrying the vintage theme through for Frocktober? Here’s a bunch of pretty re-released vintage and retro patterns from the Big 4, all easy to obtain and pretty to make.

First up, we’re heading back to the 1930’s with….

Vogue V2859

Vogue V2859. As well as a dress, this has a pattern for an evening-style long coat and a super cute wrap blouse. I will warn you though – it’s an advanced pattern for a reason. Lots of interesting seaming details, with lapped seams and points that need to look nice and sharp. It’s stunning though, and the dress in particular is easily made modern simply by shortening it. (I got curious and made it shorter and in a cotton drill.)

Vogue V2787

Here’s a 1940’s pattern for your viewing pleasure – Vogue V2787. Isn’t that front seaming and draping detail fascinating? I really want to see this one made up!

Butterick B5281

I must admit that I wasn’t sure about this one, and then I made it up. And promptly made it again, coz I loved it so much. (And yes, one day I fully intend to make it up a third time.) It’s Butterick B5281 from the 1940’s. I do love me some of those 1940’s details, don’t you? This one features an assymetric seam down the front skirt, fitted waist, and draping on one shoulder.

Vogue V8768

I’m not 100% sure which decade Vogue V8768 is from, but I’m picking late 1940s – early 1950s. It’s got a faux-bolero style at the front, peplum at the back, and pretty drapes in the back of the skirt. And one day, this pattern will make it’s way into my collection…..

Butterick B5708 (1950s)

Here’s a sweet little 1950’s dress – Butterick B5708. Check out that rather unique neckline and shoulder ties! That’s right – this one’s able to be worn in several different ways. Four different ways, to be exact – including strapless and one-shouldered. Plus that bodice has plenty of colour blocking / pattern mixing potential.

Vogue V2401

Another 1950’s beauty, this time Vogue V2401. It’s an interesting take on a shirt/coat style dress – it almost looks like outerwear in the image (done up in kinda trenchcoat-brown), with it’s 3/4 sleeves, high collar, and ties at the front. But don’t let that fool you – I bet this would look stunning made up in a pretty cotton.

And the one I wanted to share with you from the 1960’s is Simplicity 1609. But you know what? The way Simplicity do their website images, I couldn’t grab one to add here. Sorry ’bout that. 😦 I can tell you it’s a pretty cute and classic late-1960’s style, though. A shift style sleeveless dress, with dart shaping at front and back waist, and your choice of either a plain neckline, a bow, or a cute scalloped collar. (Personally, I’d go for the collar variation. So, so cute!)

7 thoughts on “Frocktober inspiration – big 4 vintage and retro dresses

  1. Hi there,
    I just came across your blog and this wonderful idea – how inspiring! Unfortunately while I love all the frocks you show I have very little cause to wear any of these dresses, my life just doesn’t seem “frockable” enough. Still, I shall follow your progress while I get on with more down to earth sewing 🙂


  2. Hey Kat!! I have that 1940s Vogue V2787!! I saw it, was in my size and on sale, and bought it. But, was always ‘afraid’ to make it since I’ve never really sewn or worn anything from the 40’s. But, now, since you really want to see it made up…..I think that may be my impetus to get that baby sewing!


  3. I’ve got a few of these in my stash – V2859 (I made the top before I was really skilled enough… and the dress appeals but looks like work), V2787 which *I think* The Sew Convert has made (but I can’t find it on her blog), and B5281. It’s soooo hard to choose!


  4. No fair. I’ve spent hours and hours and hours trying to decide on a dress pattern to make, and you’ve just gone and added to my decision dilemma! 😦

    Only 2 days to go to choose my final pattern, and now I have MORE to consider.


    Kids in candy stores – such a pitiful comparison. 🙂


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