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Well, it’s been busy, busy, busy at Sew La Di Da HQ, that’s for sure! Since our enormously popular jumpsuit, Margo, launched at the Spring Knitting and Stitching show at Olympia, we’ve been stitching up a storm in our seaside studio. With new patterns, new dolls and entire new ranges in the works, AW 2016 is set to be an exciting time for all Sew La Di Da sewists.
Catch Caroline this Saturday, the 16th of July, at 2pm on the Create and Craft channel launching our brand new Margo add-on pattern, Princess, and hear all about the inspiration behind our chic jumpsuit update. She’ll also be talking about Sweetheart, Rose and the original Margo, so be sure to tune in!
If you don’t have access to the Create and Craft channel, don’t worry, we’ve got lots of appearances coming up over the Summer and Autumn this year – such as at the Kirsty Allsop Handmade Fair at Hampton Court Palace, and the Alexandra Palace Knitting and Stitching Show – so come along, say hello and check out what’s new. You won’t be disappointed!
Right, back to the drawing board – literally!
Caroline Smith set up Sew La Di Da Vintage patterns so that women could create their own vintage inspired clothes.
How did Sew La Di Da Vintage come about?
I owned a shop selling vintage clothing and I was also making bespoke couture and teaching sewing. Vintage clothing is much smaller than our high street sizes today, and so I designed a couple of dresses that were influenced by the past but cut to today’s body shapes. Vintage patterns are often complex, so I felt there was a need for patterns that sewers wouldn’t have to fiddle about with too much.
Do you have any advice for dressmakers who are sewing vintage inspired fashion?
If you’re stitching a vintage pattern, remember that underwear was different in the past. Our bust shape today is softer which can affect how clothes look. Make up a toile of the design as it is, then see if you can personalise it to your body shape. Get a friend who sews to help – that way you can move seams and lengthen or shorten waists.
What fabric do you use when sewing vintage inspired clothes?
I often sew with vintage fabric sourced from charity shops. Old curtains are great for skirts and jackets. My favourite piece has to be a black lace jacket I made from my Grandmother’s mantilla. There wasn’t quite enough so I blended it in with a modern lace. Some may say it’s outrageous to cut up a mantilla, but I think my Gran would have definitely approved!
That’s Sew Vintage…
If you would like to make your own vintage inspired clothes then please take a peek at our sewing patterns. We have a number of patterns available – suitable for beginners and more experienced sewers alike. From the Hollywood glamour of the 1930s, to the practical style of the 1940s, right through to the full-skirted and fabulous dresses of the 1950s. Visit our pattern store to discover our patterns for yourself, or check out our ‘Frocks that Rock’ sewing workshop where you get to make your own vintage inspired garment in just one weekend!
This article was originally published in a special vintage edition of SEW Magazine.
Do you have a passion for sewing vintage inspired clothes? What’s your favourite era and why? Please share with us in the comments section below…
Summer has finally graced us with her presence here in Blighty, and as we’re well into Festival season, Sew La Di Da HQ couldn’t be happier!
Following on from a wonderful weekend in York at the Festival of Vintage in April, we’ve got three more exciting dates for your diary:
7th– 9th of August – Retro Festival – Newbury Showground
29th– 31st of August – Twinwood – Clapham, Bedfordshire
11th– 13th September – Goodwood Revival – Goodwood Circuit, Chichester
We’ll be dressed to the nines and toting our full range of patterns, some sumptuous fabrics, and even a few ready to wear creations for the impatient among us! With patterns inspired by fashions from the 1940s to the 1970s, we’re sure to have something to suit your particular vintage vibe.
Our main concern right now, however, is packing! Have you been to Retro, Twinwood, or Goodwood? What did you take? Anything you wished you’d taken, or definitely left behind? We want your tips to keep us looking and feeling Sew La Di Da!