Hey! I made up a retro pattern for fun. It’s McCalls 7433 in a navy and white polka dot mystery fabric I bought when I was in France while traveling with students this past summer. I didn’t have time to go fabric shopping when I was in Paris and I was able to go when the students were doing a homestay in another smaller city. Decision fatigue is a real thing, and helping lead a group of high schoolers around 2 major European cities involves a lot of responsibility and decisions. Thus, by the time I made it to fabric shopping, I hardly looked at the bolts of fabric…I went right for the tables of precut fabric.


This was one of the 4 kinds of fabric I got. I had no particular plan for them, I just liked them and they were pretty sizable at about 2-3 meters apiece. The others are probably rayon since they’re so soft but this one probably has polyester in it since it’s not as soft, doesn’t really wrinkle, & has a slight texture. The contrasting collar and sleeves are scraps from another dress I made up from this same fabric trip. I couldn’t find anything in my stash that I liked until my mother in law (amazing sewer in her own right!) suggested I try the wrong side of a fabric and what do you know…that was perfect.


I had to look up the yard to meter equivalent since buying fabric in metric units is forgeign to me. I thought they were about the same, but I had to check! I had a nice conversation with the salesman about where I was from and a few other things I don’t remember. It was one of those times where I thought “I’m not sucking at French right now!” so it was all around pleasant experience 😉


One of the first times I wore this dress was to a family wedding. It was a gorgeous day, but pretty windy. I got out of my mom-mobile and went to get my daughter out of her car seat when ‘whoooosh’… a big gust of wind came and blew my skirt up I-don’t-even-want-to-know-how-high. Since the material is slightly transparent, I wore a full slip underneath – and thank God for that! With the design and the fact that it’s such a light fabric, it’s a little more prone to wind related wardrobe malfunctions. These photos were not taken at the wedding because I was too busy chasing after my cutie pie. The day I took these photos it was WAY too windy to do them anywhere less protected than the front porch. Why do I make impractical things? I live on the prairie. It’s always windy.

I cut size 10 in the bust and graded to a 12 everywhere else. I did a sloppy job on the side seams so I think it’s a little more snug than it should be, which makes the bottom button area gape a bit. The hem is pretty bad but after redoing in once, I’m just going to call it good enough. I’m still lacking some of those key finishing skills (patience being, perhaps, the most wanting), but I’m getting better.


I can’t stand having yucky seams on the inside of the garments. I don’t own a serger and don’t really want one, so I make due in other ways. I used French seams wherever possible and bias binding most everywhere else.


Can I just say that I like that this retro pattern didn’t end up looking straight out of 1940-something? The dresses on the envelope are cool but it’s a bit hard to look past the styling to see if it could look modern. With a less traditional fabric, it could look even more different, I think.