Dressing Mommy Up Pretty

(several sizes too big)

As a 25-year old Mommy, I find “dressing up” a conundrum.  I’m not exactly “matronly” yet: I want to look young but still cover my knees, clearly “off the market” yet attractive.  Solution?  50 year old fashions, of course! Welcome to Australian Home Journal March-Sept 1960.

I like elements of both dresses above (and have the patterns).  Blue skirt with drape in the white gold fabric, perhaps with a flowing hemp-silk drape detail.  Bodice? 

The green is to die for.  My white gold brocade (marocain, ottoman?) would perfectly suit the short box-pleated skirt.  I’m nearly sold on that skirt.  I could use the same fabric for the whole dress (sans sleeves) or use a white satin or gold lame for the midriff section and/or bow. 

The pink- a departure from the ordinary.  Nice.  Not for this dress.

Delightful.  I’m not into the skirt, but the pleated bodice catches my eye.  Paired with the full skirt above?  I’d have to make the pattern.

Selfish Seamstress

Could I use the back from That Dress in white/gold, paired with a full skirt?  Burda did in a recent tribute to Jackie O…
Not exactly the same back detail; admittedly tulip skirt rather than full pleated, and in black.   I would want a plain front with a back like that, cut bateau.  In white gold.
I’m highly susceptible to inspiration from you clever, stylish types.

This can simmer in the back of my mind for now.  24 hours to stay-cation!


  1. You're brave to sew vintage. It always looks tough to me. Is this dress going to be for a particular special occasion? At 25, I think you can probably get away with wearing anything! And you should while you still can! :) Matronly creeps up on us all while we are not looking, busy working, raising children, fixing up houses, starting business etc.

  2. The occasion is my husband's graduation! I'm so proud of him, and pleased this chapter in our lives of being working parents/students is drawing to a close. And I have a huge company Christmas party we throw every year for our customers. They'll expect to see me "dressed," and would be even more thrilled that I recycled a dress and used an AHJ pattern.

  3. The skirt on 5617 reminds me of my bellydancing days. It might look kind of neat but needs the perfect fabric. The fabric on the dress you are wearing in the top pic is a bit stiff for bellydance drape. I like the top pattern and the burda. What a challenge it will be refashioning your dress!

  4. I think the Burda would be stunning in that fabric, although it seems to me the skirt of the dress in the magazine is a lot puffier at the hips than the pattern drawing shows… something to think about. The first green dress would be lovely also.Although, being me, I probably prefer the dress as it is best… long, slim, princess seam lines, yum :)… speaking as someone who's been "off the market" since she was 18, youch.

  5. Ooh, 5524 (the green one) is gorgeous. I would probably drop the neckline a bit for myself but everything else about is amazing. And it would work with that fabric, I think – the skirt especially!

  6. My vote: the pleated bodice of 5617 paired with a really full double box pleated skirt. I have no idea if that would work for this fabric though!Or: I would do 5523 (the blue dress), completely in the white/gold fabric, with the top cut like *that* dress – sleeveless, bateu neck, that back.And I can't believe you feel matronly! Silly thing! You're younger thank me! Of course, numerous people are always telling me that I dress too old…sigh.

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