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 #2, the wearable version

How much fiddling can a sewist fiddle… before she LOSES HER MIND! I have come to realize that I’m someone who visualizes how something should look in her head and when the thing I’m making doesn’t look exactly like it… I will fiddle with it, until I’m ready to scream. This has been the last two weeks of my trouser adventure. Why, oh why do I do this to myself. I know I’m not alone here. Raise your hand. Come on! Gett’em up!

I raised the waist. I put it back to where it was. I raised the waist. I put it back to where it was. Then I finally talked myself into leaving it where the pattern has it sitting. Why? I’m hight waisted and realized if I put the waist where my current waist is… it will not be flattering. I’m on a weight loss journey and as I do, my waistline will also lower.

I found the pant legs to be way too wide for me. I took 2″ out of the bottom and tapered them up to the knee.

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.

Then…. after more fiddling I was finally happy with the toile. A happy outcome, was I’d lost more weight and the I had to take the toile in. Now happy with it, I cut out the pants. I wasn’t able to make them right away and would wait a week to sew them. Then sew day came…. and I’d clearly lost a few more pounds in the week I waited… because they were slightly too big. I took another inch out to the waist and 2 inches out of the hips and reduced the width of the legs even more.

For the next rendition of these trousers, I am going to use the original pattern. I had to size up from it and now thing the original size will fit me now.

Am I 100% happy with the trousers? Not yet. I’m going to be trying several different styles over the next few months to see what works. It’s my goal to get the perfect fit for the body I have. The next one I am working on is the Loretta shorts. I’m modifying them to be pants. Stay tuned. They will be next.

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!

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!

1920s, 1930s, 1940s, 1950s, 1960s, crochet, crochet-a-long, killer kitsch sew-a-long, knit-a-long, knitting, knitting community, sew-a-long, sewing, spring, vintage, Vintage Community, vintage crochet, vintage knitting, vintage knitting patterns, vintage life, vintage pattern, vintage reproduction, vintage sewing, vintage style

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, crochet, crochet-a-long, knit-a-long, knitting, knitting community, vintage crochet, vintage knitting

Let’s Knit Like It’s The 1920s!

It’s the 2020! Let’s celebrate likes it’s the 1920s with 1920s style makes!!!

The January to March (January 1 to March 30) knit-a-long will be another bring your own pattern; it just needs to be in the theme of the 1920s. 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 can suggest a pattern for you! It can be anything from a cloche to a coat! It is completely up to you!

If you have a pattern you would like to share with the group, please post it in the files or link it in a post. Any and all suggestions are welcome!

The KAL will be in our vintage knit-a-long group. https://www.facebook.com/groups/killerkitschvintageknitalong/

If you post your KAL photos on Instagram please tag me at @killerkitsch13 and use tags #killerkitschknitalong and #1920salong.


1920s, 1930s, 1940s, 1950s, crochet, crochet-a-long, halloween, halloween-a-long, knit-a-long, knitting, knitting community, sew-a-long, sewing, vintage crochet, vintage knitting, vintage sewing

Halloween-a-long

Boo! Or should that be Trick or Treat! Either way, show us your vintage inspired Halloween Costumes during the month of October for our Halloween-a-long!

The October (October 1 to October 31st) a-long in our Vintage WIPs group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/killerkitschvintagewips/) 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, sewn, a refashion or a combination of all!

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

1920s, 1930s, 1940s, 1950s, bolero, cardigan, crochet, crochet pattern, crochet-a-long, free knitting pattern, free pattern, knit-a-long, knitting, knitting community, shrug, vintage, Vintage Community, vintage crochet, vintage knitting, vintage knitting patterns, vintage life, vintage pattern, vintage reproduction, vintage style

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.  

1920s, 1930s, 1940s, 1950s, crochet, crochet pattern, crochet-a-long, knit-a-long, knitting, knitting community, sew-a-long, sewing, vintage crochet, vintage knitting, vintage knitting patterns, vintage sewing

Knitting yourself into an injury!

PSA from the girl who can’t knit/crochet or sew (it hurts to cut fabric) for the next 4 to 6 weeks. I learned a hard lesson and need to share it with all of you. 😔 

I am someone who would, without realizing it, knit for hours at a time. It wouldn’t be until my digits or wrists got tired, would I realize how long I had been knitting. Then, I noticed my thumb started to get stiff in the morning (when I woke up), then sore and hard to straighten out right away (I would need to stretch it)… now it hurts to bend. Two weeks ago I stopped knitting to see if that would help, but it didn’t. I went to the doctor and I have tendonitis and it will take 4 to 6 weeks to heal fully. I’m frustrated because I can’t knit, crochet or sew and I have to be patient. Not being able to at least knit is making me antsy!

Many times I read how important resting and stretching was, but I didn’t heed this information thinking I would be fine. Don’t be like me! Take lots of breaks and stretch your hands before, during and after knitting/crochet. It will save you from injuring your digits or wrists. Here are the stretches and strengthening excises I’ve been doing. https://www.healthline.com/health/de-quervains-tenosynovitis-exercises?fbclid=IwAR0Bf34cj0-MF4o52hHbHHShFBv9_99NIfvu6sCJm7v2T3tr1pUN2VF6f-o#thumb-lifts

On the positive side, I’m hoping it is healed up in time for the next KAL/SAL and for my winter cardigan knitting plans. Unfortunately, I can’t even sew ATM because even cutting out fabric is hurting my thumb. I’ve missed out on the Beach PJ SAL and possibly the Betty dress SAL. 😔 
Do yourself a favour and take care of your hands!

1920s, 1930s, 1940s, 1950s, 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

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.