Simplicity Vintage Patterns – For Your Body Shape

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Rectangular, Pear, hourglass, small bust.

If you are planning to visit Goodwood Revival or the Tinwood Festival, this dress will be perfect. You will step right into the 1940s.

The front panel and gathering hides a rounded tummy.

If you are curvy, this will enhance your shape, great for those with a smaller bust.

The Y shape balances pear shapes, and gives an overall slimming illusion.

Best in crepe or a polyester with a bit of a drape to make the most of this style.


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Hourglass, Pear Shape, Triangle

I love this 1950 vintage style dress it is such a flattering style especially for summer. I really like that there are two models on the front of this pattern, the one on the right looks much closer to my body shape.

It will flatter hour glass, and pear shapes as it enhances the waist.

Also inverted triangles, (wider shoulders narrow hips) as the gathering in the skirt balances out the hips.

The bust panel enhances can help if you are smaller busted.

This would be a lovely dress to dance in, as the skirt will billow out when you spin.

If you wish, team it with a net petticoat to give the skirt added volume.

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 Hourglass, Rectangle 

This pattern is for Mad Men fans! Classic 1960s style – make it in a lovely wool crepe with a chiffon blouse – it will be perfect for a summer wedding. This pattern offers great value as you get a jacket, blouse and skirt.

Hourglass figures look amazing in pencil skirts, the waistband enhances the waist. Cut the jacket at the waist rather than the hip it will be a more flattering line.

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 Pear,  Diamond, Triangle, Hourglass, Rectangle

With its high empire line bodice and A line skirt, this is a very flattering dress style to suit all body shapes.

If you are pear shaped using a darker lower half will enhance the smaller top half.

Reverse for Triangular shapes with a darker colour on top and light skirt – creating balance.

Great in cotton which will give the dress a little structure.

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Diamond (O), Pear, Rectangle.

This dress uses a central panel creating a slimming effect. Great for those who are Diamond or O or pear or Triangle shapes.

The coat is very on trend at the moment, especially if you use a light weight linen for summer. O, Pear and Diamond shapes will look great in this style of coat.

If you are full busted beware it will affect the line and add volume.  If you are hourglass your waistline will be lost.

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click to visit site

Pear Shape, Small Busted, Petite, Rectangle,

Boho chic 70’s is trending everywhere

This is an ideal top for those with a smaller bust, as the fullness and gathering round the cups offer a little enhancement.

Great for those who are pear shaped, add a long A line skirt to create a lovely balanced dress.

The peplum will help add curves to rectangular body shapes – with the emphasis on the wide waist band – creates a ‘defined’ waist.

Perfect for cottons, chiffon, polyester or crepe

You could take the Style A and add a longer skirt and matching panties to create a lovely retro swimsuit right out of the 1940s.

Love Sewing Magazine Ruby Dress Pattern Review




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 This ‘Sew Simple’ pattern came with Love Sewing Magazine – called the Ruby Dress

I thought it looked lovely – it is reminiscent of the 1950’s – a very flattering style, good for pear shapes or hourglass because the full skirt covers hips and thighs and focusses attention onto a small waistline which are the assets of a pear and hourglass shape.

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There were a couple of adaptations I wanted to make to the pattern:


Replace the centre Zip in the back to a concealed zip in the side seam.

11-Ruby Dress Simple Sew Pattern from Love Sewing Magazine-006I traced off the back pattern piece, using cross and dot paper.

I removed the seam allowance in the centre; because I have narrow shoulders pinched out a dart so that it narrowed the back slightly towards the top.

I drafted a mirror image to create one pattern piece that would not have to be cut on the fold. When you cut on the fold it is easy for the fabric to slip slightly out of grain – this can affect the fit and drape of the dress.

Increase bust allowance for a fuller bust

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I am a 34 G bust – so I had to adapt the pattern to allow an extra 2inches at the bust line but 34 is very narrow, so I needed to bring the pattern in at the back and shoulders.

Once again I traced off the front bodice and hit a problem – the bust point was not indicated on the pattern. So I had to find my own bust point – you do this by laying the pattern piece across your body, mark the peak of the bust as a big dot. Then cut out the side dart and move it down so it is pointing at the dot. (I had to move the dart down about 2 inches)

I made a quick toile and found that I could just increase the side seam by 1inch, and move the bottom seam by an 1inch – it would give me that extra room.

10-Ruby Dress Simple Sew Pattern from Love Sewing Magazine-005I also checked the measurement across the back – being narrow shouldered I needed to take another 1/2 inch out of the v at the back. I also skimmed an inch from the shoulder seam so it would finish at my shoulder.

Because of my large bust, I had to pinch out about a 1/2 inch dart at the neckline. I also altered the neckline so that it would sit just on my collarbone using a french curve to round it off.

Even though I am inserting a side zip, I did not need to add any further seam allowances as there would be sufficient room to insert the zip along the side seam.

I drafted new pattern pieces with these changes – these could be used to make more dresses without the need to go over the fitting again.

Lengthen the skirt length

I added approximately 3 inches to the bottom of the skirt, so that it would sit just below the knee instead of just above.

I added a cap sleeve – in keeping with the fifties style.

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My Fabric choice

I had two lovely pieces of curtain fabric to work with from a local curtain shop. The spring linen was a remnant of 3 metres for £5. The silky satin lining was a pale green 5 metres £7 which was an absolute bargain.

I wanted to line this dress and the weight of the satin would help the garment flow easily as well as protecting me from the sharpness of the zip. In essence it means you make two dresses, but it feels luxurious to wear.

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I believe the finishing of a dress makes a huge difference between the high street – it is what makes dressmaking so wonderful. Most clothing is so cheap that the design details are the way they reduce costs. I aim to sew garments that I could never afford to buy, not just for the customised fit but the small details you get with high end, great pattern matching, bra clips, lining attachments – details you will find in couture houses.

I made the lining dress first so that I was able to check the measurements again – before I worked on my outer fabric.



The challenging areas on this pattern are the neckline and the deep v at the back.

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In order to give more stability – after stitching the lining and bodice pieces together I ran some hemming web between the two layers and ironed in place. This created a beautiful crisp finish to the edge and also stabilised the v at the back.

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Its a great idea to attach the lining to the zip flap – I used my normal zip foot as it allows you to sew close to the zip edge.

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I loved the pattern of this pretty spring fabric, but the darts at the front of the dress made it look a bit odd, so I appliquéd a couple of flowers over the seam so that it looked better.

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I increased the skirt a little to add fullness and my ruffler foot made the regular pleats a doddle.

On reflection, I think I might make the next one more of a circle skirt without pleating.

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This pattern was very easy to work with – although I did not follow the making up instructions as I was confident enough to make it myself. However, if you are new to sewing it might be worth either keeping the magazine with the pattern or just the pages where they give you instructions on how to make up, then the two won’t get lost!

I use the resealable freezer bags to store my patterns, its easy to see what they look like but there is also room for my adapted patterns too. (I can never get the pattern back into the envelope).