1940s, 1945, pants, sewing, slacks, trousers, vintage, Vintage Community, vintage life, vintage pattern, vintage reproduction, vintage sewing, vintage style

1940s Trousers And The Journey To Get The Right Fit: Toile #1

Trousers, Pants, Slacks or what ever you wish to call them, have been my nemesis in my later adult years. I haven’t owned a pair in 10+ years and to be honest I swore I was never going to own a pair again. As per my previous post, there are a lot of things I hate about modern pants, including the fit and how short the rise is. I’m a high waisted, curvy girl! That just isn’t going to do. As I have with all of my current wardrobe, it I want it to fit, I have to make it myself. So why have I changed my mind? A few reasons.

  1. I live in Canada and winters get hella cold here. COLD! FREEZING! WINDCHILL! I usually wear thick tights under my dresses and skirts, but the wind still gets up there.
  2. I love the way 1930s/1940s/1950s pants look.
  3. Vintage trousers fit. The waist is where is SHOULD be. I will always need to to resize them, because I don’t have a 26″ waist or 40″ hips, but with all vintage patterns I’ve redrafted, the fit is always spot on, when I do.
  4. I follow quite a few curvy ladies on Instagram who have made their own trousers and they are rocking them! One of the ladies is Bex Huland! She looks incredible in the 1940s trousers she made and it has inspired me!

The pattern I chose for this journey is a 1945 Trouser Set B, that I found on Etsy from Eva Dress. I purchased the PDF version of the pattern. The pattern is originally by Vogue (9016), (“Easy to Make”) ‘Slacks with built-up or regulation waist line and choice of long or below-knee length. As the pattern suggests the pattern is incredibly easy to make, how ever you will need to make fit adjustments for the modern figure. I know I have to.

So, where do we start? With a toile. We always start with a toile. Every thing I sew I make one. I wish I could just sew straight from the original pattern, but that will never happen. Plus, I have some pretty sweet fabric for my first pair of trousers and there is no way in hell, I’m cutting into it until I get the fit right.

Toile #1

There will eventually be more pictures of me wearing toiles. At the moment I have no way of taking those photos.

There are going to be a few toiles, so be prepared! This first one was ok. When I redrafted it, I almost got the measurements right. I was off, ever so slightly. When I did the sit test, I found them a little snug across the front. I don’t want it baggy either, but if I have to sit for a long time, I would like it a bit looser. Also, it will be a bit more flattering on the tummy area. A few other things I need to change is the rise needs to be at least 1 to 2″ higher, I don’t like the side snaps and the legs from the knees down are way too wide. I also hate the front darts. They aren’t flattering and draw too much attention to my belly.

After making several notes, I decided to search Instagram to see who else may have made these trousers and I remembered that Bex had made a similar pair (hers are 1940s). I looked at a few of her posts and voila, she had the exact same fit issues/change ideas I did AND added a back zipper. The back zipper solved the side button issue! With her trousers, she did add pockets. For now I am going to concentrate on fit. At some point down the road, I will work on adding pocket.

Bex also has a couple blog posts about the trousers she made (here) and (here), as well as how she removed the front darts. Please check them out!

I’m going to be doing a separate blog post for each toile I make and a blog post for the finished pair (with actual photos of me wearing them). These next several months are going to be about trousers. I will be trying out different patterns and styles and working on the perfect fit for all! Oh did I mention, I’m also going to be making shorts… that’s going to be a whole other set of blog posts! I hope you will come along for the journey!

1920s, 1930s, 1940s, 1945, 1950s, 1960s, killer kitsch sew-a-long, sew-a-long, sewing, vintage, Vintage Community, vintage life, vintage pattern, vintage reproduction, vintage sewing, vintage style

Vintage Trousers/Pants Sew-a-long!

We are doing another pop-up sew-a-long over in our Killer Kitsch Vintage WIPs Facebook group. https://www.facebook.com/groups/killerkitschvintagewips/  This time around we are doing pants/trousers! We will be starting on August 24th, 2020. There is no deadline to finish, so join us when you can. Please click on the above link to join our group!

The pattern will need to be 1970s and before. It can be an original vintage pattern or vintage reproduction. If you are joining us please tag me on Instagram (@killerkitsch13) and use hashtag #killerkitschsewalong.

Why trousers you ask? For the last two years I’ve been telling myself I would finally take the trouser making adventure, but I always end up talking myself out of it. I haven’t worn pants (always dresses or skirts) in over 10 years and for a few reasons, but the main reason is I hate the way modern pants fit. The waist is too low and the rise too short. I prefer the styles of the 1930s to 1950s for trousers and pants and those are the era’s I will be sticking with. The waist line and rise are perfection. Heck! I’m even making a pair of shorts. The trousers are from 1945 and a pattern I found on the Eva Dress Etsy store. The shorts are the Loretta shorts from Charm Patterns. (You will need to join their Patreon to get the pattern.) I am also going to attempt a 1950s style pedal pushers. Photos are all in the slide show below!

If you are wanting to also get started and are looking to make trousers/pants, please join us!

1950s, knit-a-long, knitting, knitting community, vintage, Vintage Community, vintage knitting, vintage knitting patterns, vintage life, vintage pattern, vintage reproduction, vintage style

Denise Patons 323 Pop-up KAL

We are starting to do some pop-up KALs/CALs/SALs over in our WIPs Facebook group. I know it is really hard for many to buy fabric or yarn right now, so we are trying to make them stash busters. These are also very loose in their deadline. Start and end when you can. Once we are out of Pandemic Jail we will go back to regular KALs/CALs/SALs.

A few of us are doing the Denise Patons 323 jumper and we thought it would be fun to see if anyone else wanted to join. You can join here or in the WIPs group. (https://www.facebook.com/groups/killerkitschvintagewips/)

If you are joining us please tag me over on Instagram (@killerkitsch13) and use hashtag #killerkitschknitalong

The pattern can be purchased over on Bex Huland’s Etsy shop, Subversive Femme! Here is the link https://www.etsy.com/listing/798662282/denise-a-multi-coloured-jumper-from?ref=shop_home_active_1&crt=1.

I’ve chosen some Fall colours for my jumper, because not only is it my favourite time of year, they are colours that just suit me! I’m also doing the order of colours opposite of the photo with the darker colour on the bottom and the light colours on top. So… Purple, orange then yellow.

The yarn being used is a fingering yarn. I know many don’t like to use this weight because they feel like the task of knitting with it is daunting. Also, there are 5″ of 1 x 1 ribbing for this top and that alone might deter you, but trust me, this knits up pretty fast. You aren’t using teeny tiny needles and that is truly helpful! After only a few days of knitting a few hours a night (see photo below) I am already onto the body and as of today am almost at the point where I will change colours.

We would love it if you joined us. If you aren’t on Facebook, you can also join us over on Instagram!

Happy Knitting!

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Planning! Upcoming Sewing Plans

I apologize. It’s been a while since we’ve chatted. It’s funny that, because I have been sewing up a storm. I’ve been sewing dresses and tops and some more dresses. Heck, my upcoming plans are quite ambitious if I do say so myself. What should we start with? What I’ve made or what I’m going to make. Let’s get a warm up with the garments I’ve made so far.

Dresses! For the sew a vintage dress a month challenge, I’ve made 5 dresses. I’m currently planning out my June dress. I love this challenge and the fact it has me making more dresses! My closest is currently crammed tight.

Tops! I have had the Rita Blouse pattern sitting and ready to go for a while! I finally made a couple. They are really quick and fast to sew up. I will definitely be making more.

Upcoming Plans!

Tiki! Tiki! Tiki!

I’ve been excited with the warmer weather approaching, which means I can break out my skirts and dresses. Even though we still can’t go out to bars and event venues that should stop me from wearing my makes or plan on garments that excite me. The theme that is making me really happy right now is Tiki! Here are some photos that are inspiring my plans right now.

Another garment I have been thinking long and hard about making is pants. I haven’t owned a pair in well over a decade. Why? I don’t like how they fit. Moderns pants are low-waisted and look horrendous on this high-waisted gal.

More dresses because a girl can’t enough of them!

We also can’t forget a bit of knitting and crochet. I need to keep my hands busy. Keeps me out of trouble.

crochet, crochet pattern, crochet-a-long, knit-a-long, knitting, knitting community, sew-a-long, sewing, vintage, Vintage Community, vintage crochet, vintage knitting, vintage knitting patterns, vintage life, vintage pattern, vintage reproduction, vintage sewing, vintage style

It’s been a while!

How is everyone doing? I know it’s been a while since I’ve posted here and even longer since I’ve posted a SAL/KAL/CAL. We are going to be running a sew your stash-a-long in our Killer Kitsch Facebook Vintage WIPs group, please join us if you are working through your stash as well.

I’ve also been posting a lot over in my Lizzie Violet blog. It’s been a daily thing and I’m posting about learning how to including sewing, knitting, cross stitch and crochet. Below are some of the links.

How to crochethttps://lizzieviolet.com/2020/04/27/stay-the-fuck-home-learn-how-to-crochet-edition/

How to knithttps://lizzieviolet.com/2020/04/26/stay-the-fuck-home-learn-how-to-knit-edition/

Sewing Machine Maintenancehttps://lizzieviolet.com/2020/04/15/stay-the-fuck-home-sewing-machine-maintenance-edition/

How to sewhttps://lizzieviolet.com/2020/03/21/stay-the-fuck-home-the-sewing-edition/

Sewing part 2https://lizzieviolet.com/2020/04/24/stay-the-fuck-home-sewing-tutorials-part-deux-edition/

I’m also giving a hey to dining room sewists. I know what it’s like. Many of us live in apartments and sadly, don’t have the luxury of a sewing room. Where are you setting up for your sewing? Post in the comments below. My set-up is on our dining room. For cutting out and drafting patterns, I lay down a bunch of foam mats that look like puzzle pieces. They are meant for kids to play on. This protects the table. When I’m drafting, I lay bristol board on top of it. Everything courtesy of the dollar store!

How is your sewing/knitting/crochet/cross-stitch going? Are you inspired to stay creative or have you lost the desire?

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Spring Has Almost Sprung!

It’s time to announce what our March/April SAL/KAL/CAL will be! It is SPRING! From March 1 to April 30th, show us your Spring sewing, knitting and crochet projects! Here are some photos for inspiration!

As always if you post on Instagram, please tag us at @killerkitsch13 and use one of the following hashtags. #killerkitschsewalong#killerkitschknitalong#killerkitschcrochetalong

adjustable skirt, ask sarah, killer kitsch sew-a-long, sew-a-long, sewing, vintage, Vintage Community, vintage life, vintage pattern, vintage sewing

Adjustable Skirt Sew-a-long

We are super excited for our February sew-a-long, because it’s another collaboration with Ask Sarah! Our last collaboration with Sarah was for the super swell Tiki Set! Anyone who participated will remember how much fun it was to make the Tiki Set.

Oh, and did I mention it will be an adjustable wrap skirt for the February sew-a-long! That’s right an ADJUSTABLE wrap skirt! Who doesn’t love an adjustable skirt!

The SAL will run from February 1 to 29 (yuppers, this year Feb is a leap year!). As always, if you post on Instagram please tag @killerkitsch13 and use hashtags #killerkitschsewalong #wrapskirtalong. Please, also tag Sarah on all of your posts as well. Her Instagram is @asksarah.com.au

We will also provide information about the sew-a-long in our Facebook group. (https://www.facebook.com/groups/killerkitschvintagewips/)

Now a little bit about Sarah!

Ask Sarah is a DIY, self-drafting fashionista with vintage flair. Sarah can be found creating twirly half circle skirts or sassy ensembles. Sarah doesn’t put pockets in all the things… but there is always cat fur on all the things! 

Ask Sarah is an Australian based creator and designer and all of her social media links are below.  https://www.instagram.com/asksarah.com.au/

1920s, 1930s, 1940s, 1950s, 1960s, sew a dress a month, sew-a-long, sewing, vintage, Vintage Community, vintage life, vintage pattern, vintage reproduction, vintage sewing, vintage style

Vintage Sew A Dress A Month

We have a super exciting announcement! Are you ready for it?

Starting January 1st, 2020 we will be doing a sew-a-dress-a-month-a-long!  That’s right! And even more exciting, Killer Kitsch has partnered with Renae Brock Fitzgibbon for this exciting monthly SAL! If you follow her on Instagram you would have seen all of her gorgeous dresses from this year. You can follow along here or join our by joining our Facebook Group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/vintagesewadressamonth/)

How does the dress-a-month-a-long work?

Pick your pattern (can be vintage, vintage reproduction or self-drafted)
Pick your material
Pick your notions
Sew!

Make sure to show us a photo of what you will be sewing at the beginning of the month (or as soon as you know). Each dress-a-long will run from the 1st to the end of each month.

If you post on Instagram please tag @killerkitsch13 and @br0ck_n_r0ll. Please also use hashtags #killerkitschsewalong & #sewadresseachmonth.


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Boleros, Cardigans and Shrugs in heavy yarns oh my!

I don’t know about you, but when September rolls in I feel the need to break out the cardigans. We have decided to change this KAL/CAL up a bit and ask that you use heavier yarns for your jumpers, such as worsted weight and higher (thank you Erica for the idea!)

The October to December (October 1 to December 31st) knit-a-long in our Vintage Knitting group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/killerkitschvintageknitalong/) will be another bring your own pattern; it just needs to be vintage (1960s and earlier). But here is the twist, it can be knit, crochet or a combination of both! Not to worry, if you don’t have a pattern in your stash we will be providing some pattern information that will be found over in our Facebook group.  

If you post your KAL photos on Instagram please tag me at @killerkitsch13 and use tags #killerkitschknitalong and #cardiganalong.

Not to worry, if you don’t have a pattern in your stash we will be providing some pattern information that will be found over in our Facebook group.  

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New Challenge!

Each year, starting on my birthday, I give myself a new garment related challenge. Last year I tried to make one garment a week and though I didn’t quite make 52 (made 45 garments for myself) I am quite proud of what I achieved. With my birthday approaching (July 31st for those keeping track), I need to come up with a new challenge. What o’ what could that challenge be?


I’ve been bouncing ideas around and decided to take a look at my wardrobe to see what I needed to fill in gaps. When I did this I noticed that I don’t have trousers, fitted skirts and very few blouses. I am also lacking coats and cardigans (and the ones I have are looking shabby). After this realization, I also concluded that I don’t have many structured/fitted garments and I believe a large part of that is because I am a curvy girl and it is hard to find sizes that fit right. I found myself saying out loud, ‘But isn’t that why you make your own clothing?’ Yes. Yes it is.


Hold on… did you say you don’t have any trousers. That is correct. I haven’t owned trousers of any kind in at least ten years. Why? I hate the way they fit. As I mentioned earlier, I am a curvy girl. I’ve always had an hourglass figure, (large boobs, smaller waist, wide hips) even when I was slender. I hated shopping for pants of any kind. If I was able to get them to fit in the hips, the waist was too big. I also have really long legs and a high waist, so I could never get the rise to fit right either. So…. I stopped wearing them. That is about to change.

Toile! Toile! Toile!

Anyone who sews knows you need to make a toile to get your fit down and when making pants I see a lot of them in my future! I want to make 3 basic types. 1930/1940 high waist style, 1950s Rockabilly style and elastic waist Beach Pyjama Style. These will cover most of my vintage inspired wardrobe needs.

Another large project I want to undertake is replacing all of my cardigans. Many are in shabby shape and I will likely repurpose them into mittens or other things. That said… knitting will need to wait for a while. I’ve done something to my thumb and need to wait a few more days before I can have it looked at. In the meantime… there is sewing!

However, me being me, I am adding and addition challenge starting January 1, 2020. I am going to start reproducing Miss Lemon’s wardrobe (from the TV show Poirot). Because in my world, one challenge is not enough!

Let’s get sewing!

Please add my Instagram account @killerkitsch13 to see regular progress updates.