Shirt-Waist Dresses

Have I mentioned before I'm dreaming of making myself a shirt-waist dress? There is just SO much inspiration out there right now! Anthropologie has a collection this summer, including the one above. How about the detail on the sleeves? Wow!

This pattern by Butterick has lots of potential. I like the sleeve options and the Peter Pan collar. Wonder if it includes instructions for the self-covered belt shown in the picture?

The very talented Kalthleen Frances at Grosgrain just led one of her Frock-by-Friday sew-alongs using this free pattern from Bernina. (Be sure to check out Kathleen Frances's version at her blog!)

The Folkwear Patterns Sporty Forties Dress & Sweater is out of print, but I saw a copy the other day and may just have to go back for it... I love this line of patterns. Well, I've never sewn from one, but still. The illustrations are just gorgeous, but all of the photos of each project look to have been taken in the 80's or early 90's. Great drawings v. Bad Styling. Is it worth the risk?

This shirtdress is from the April 2010 Burda Style Magazine, also available on their website, here. I have been picking up this fantastic magazine for a few months now, but have yet to sew from it. Their patterns come without seam allowances, and I'll admit that I'm a little intimidated. Oh, and of course, I would make use of a few more buttons than the model in the picture...

And finally, one of my favorites, Ceylon, from Colette Patterns. Absolutely lovely.

So, I know I want to make a shirtwaist dress, but can't decide between sporty or romantic. Any thoughts? Have you seen inspiration along these lines that I should be aware of? Or maybe I should quit looking for inspiration and just buckle down & start sewing already?


  1. ohh..I love that last one. Doitdoit!

  2. I agree with Rainy Daisy that the last pattern is very cute. It is similar to one that your great aunt Charlene wore back in the 40's.

    I prefer the polka dot dress, however. I do have to warn you if you choose that particular pattern maker. Everything I have made with their pattens for the past few years have not been all that easy to fit including Treva's bridesmaid dresses. They all seem to be cut smaller than other pattern makers cut their pattens.

    I have a peach raw silk dress in the closet from my shirtwaist wearing days. Want it to remake into a more modern style?

  3. They are all so cute and I am courios the see yours, which will surely allso be wonderful. Good luck! Annette


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