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Marathon Skirt making project

Don’t worry I havent forgotton my Haslam blouse, it is on the back burner at the moment, have you ever had a project that goes together fine in the testing stage but once you get to the actual putting it together what could go wrong will go wrong.

That is my Haslam blouse, first I made a hash of the corner trying to French seam it as per the instructions (got a small hole in the corner 😦 ) the second one I tried went together beautifully, then I noticed a small mark on the front of the section on the one of the fronts, normally I would have just swapped it out, but I’d just overlocked the whole lot, after deciding to give the french seams a miss.

This weekend I have made, or at least started 5 skirts, 3 are all the same pattern and for a friend, she has just had abdominal surgery, and her low waised ‘modern’ skirts and trousers rub in the wrong place, since going back to work she has practically lived in 2 skirts I made her for chistmas.

 The pattern was created from the Lutterloh 70s book, I have already made another long skirt, but as she is about to go on a boating holiday they are not practical, so using the same pattern, but cutting it shorter here are three more skirts.

I have also made two skirts for me, one is an unblogged 70s skirt pattern from simplicity. The other is a Haslam skirt, 

I made a mistake on my fabric choice for the Haslam skirt, the check doesn’t lead it self to darts and I’m not sure that it can hold the pleats.
The skirts are all put together and just need their waistbands and hemming, the Haslam skirt also needs its pleats.

Hopefully I can get some photos before my friend goes on holiday.

Lutterloh the verdict

Now this hasn’t been a complete success, but it also hasn’t been a complete failure. The fit was good, unfortunately the choice of pattern was a bit ambitious.

I managed to get the front lying better in the second version than the first version, probably if I made the dress a few more times I would get the stitching right.


I can’t get the front to line up properly, the two fronts curve up under the bust, one side following back down the other, just in case you think it’s because, it’s too small across the chest, it didn’t matter what I did even just laying it on the bed with nothing in it it wouldn’t lay properly.

As you can see the back looks good, I think I probably should have taken an inch out of the skirt length as it is laying a bit low across the hips.


I might fiddle with the bodice size as I didn’t have much movement in the shoulder area, but for once I wasn’t swimming in fabric under the arms and across the bust.


This picture shows the hip problem quite well.

The verdict is that I will make more dresses from the system, but will be more careful in my pattern choices. I was very impressed at how easily it was to create the pattern, practice will make the curves (sleeve head) better and I have noticed that the later the pattern the more information you are given for making up the garments.

Lutterloh part 2

I’ve put the test dress together, one thing I have discovered is 1940s/50s women have stick arms I don’t know how they managed to lift anything


The fit isn’t too bad, it’s a bit large around the hips but that, it turns out is user error, I measured my hips wrong so I’m about 6mm out size wise I don’t know how that equates over the whole pattern yet.




the sleeve head is a bit puffy, but I’ve redrawn that using the curve tool that came with my pattern book, its now an inch and a half smaller.

I’ve measured out the new skirt pieces and it equates to about 5 inches over the whole skirt


since getting back into sewing last year, I have been hearing whispers about Lutterloh pattern books, what I read was quite interesting, I found a couple of books to download, which i found quite fascinating, how you take this iddy bitty patterns and make full sized clothes from them,

then a couple of weeks ago I was lucky enough to win on ebay my very own pattern book, I’m not sure which year it is, late 1940s early 1950s completed with measuring tape and pattern ruler, it looked untouched.
now a lot of the things I read about the system suggests you should work on a vest (waistcoat) pattern until you get the fit right then you will be ready to try a proper pattern, where is the fun in that?

I picked a dress, from my scanned book, no particular reason it just caught my eye. looked sort of easy two skirt pieces two bodice pieces and a sleeve.
To be fair it was easy, I created my pattern pieces I cut them out on an old sheet, then there was the hard bit. the bodice comes to a point on the center front, the center back point was easy, but at the moment I have a weird I’m not laying down properly lump where the bodice is attached to the skirt. Then there is the sleeves, I was under the impression that they marked the back of the sleeve with an ‘A’ shape I have this symbol on the the other pieces just not the sleeve, it shouldn’t be too hard to work out but even so….

This is what my dress looks like so far


With the best will in the world I don’t think anything will make the skirt look like the pattern, cutting it on the bias might help but there just isn’t the material to get that kind of drape. I am quite happy with it so far though.