Narrowing down choices for the 30s Sew-Along

I’ve been lured into a 30s sew-along by Norma from She Sews You Know . She’s promised me a “very slow 1930s sewalong … No rules no pressure – just 1930s and encouragement”. It sounds about my speed. I absolutely love vintage clothes and the cut of a 30s dress is one of my favorites. They are hard to find though, and expensive when you do find them, so why not make my own? I’ve narrowed down my options to four choices of reproduction patterns:


This pattern from 1930 has a beautiful cut. I like the middle, long sleeved option with no cape.


This rare pattern put out by Butterick in 1933 is a design for a dress and jacket “as worn by Miss Hepburn in an R.K.O. Radio Picture”. It’s an amazing jacket – although I don’t know how many occasions I would have to wear it. I like that I could make this outfit in a light weight wool.


This 1936 dress is a more practical choice, but not quite as exciting as the cuts of the earlier 30s. I really do like this sleeve though.


Finally, this 1931 dress was one of my first choices. I like the first long sleeved option. I’m just not sure how hard the curved yoke would be…

Which one to choose? Any preferences, comments or suggestions on my choices? Although I sew a lot, I am a novice to vintage sewing so I’d appreciate any advice.


The Oldest Nuhn girl.



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10 thoughts on “Narrowing down choices for the 30s Sew-Along

    1. I have a vintage sewing machine from the 40s (close enough 😉 ) that my grandmother gave me. I’m going to use that to make the dress. I don’t know about fabric yet. I’ll try and do it in the appropriate fabric and color – where do you find vintage fabrics?


      1. Usually I try charity shops, especially the bigger ones that do estate sales and the like. You can find some real gems but you have to be patient. I’m scared of buying fabric online so I don’t know any good websites

        Liked by 1 person

  1. I would advise not to tackle a garment cut completely on the bias unless you’re experienced with that cut. I will briefly explain my bias cut disaster dress. It was silk velvet with fitted sleeves. I cut a bias strip of satin to use as a yoke. The muslin toile was weighted so that the stretch would settle in. The pattern adjusted and fabric cut. When the dress was completed, the weight of the velvet caused the dress to stretch some more. Yikes! The seam at the apex of the bust line was now lower as was the waistline. It did not look good at all. Bias keeps stretching and is tricky. If you want to work with bias cut 1930s styles, try something that is partly cut on the bias like a flounce that gets attached to a dress or skirt cut on the straight grain. That way you only have to stabilize that one portion to prevent further stretch after letting the grain settle before hemming.

    Since the styles are slinky go with the one that is most flattering for your figure.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. ❤️❤️❤️the 30s! They are all delectable but my vote is for #4 – wearable but still fun! I’ve used a few vintage patterns, once you get used to the instructions they’re usually very straight forward. I am very tempted to join this sew along!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I love the first dress–so slinky–but how easy would it be to wear. I think you should go with what would look good on you. The jacket is stunning but I think you would have to be very slender to wear it. I would loo like a giant puff ball. I don’t sew but I am following along on Norma’s blog. This is really cool to see take shape.


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