Fashions towards the end of the 1930s combined the frugality of the lean Depression years with touches of Hollywood extravagance. Our sewing pattern is for a practical dress that uses fabric economically, yet still looks chic and trendy.
In the late 1930s, the glamorous and glittering distractions of Hollywood were a distraction from an often grim realities of everyday life. As Americans began to pull out of the Great Depression, they watched and mimicked the fun and fancy ways of the wealthy the best they could. World War II was yet to come and US citizens reveled in an upbeat, although naive, mood.
View A, drafted from an original dress (circa 1939) features round neck with collar points and peplum cleverly cut on the straight grain but with the slimming look of a bias cut. It has a back zipper, dropped waistline, and short sleeves. The unpressed tucks in the front eliminate the need for bust darts and create a fashionable broad shouldered look of the period.
View B is our designer's variation of the original design. It has a more casual look, with buttoned front bodice, flounce collar and sleeves, back zipper and eyelash pockets with flounce pocket bands.
Both dresses have a slightly flared skirt that is very flattering.
Suggested fabrics: Rayon, medium-weight silk, microfiber, or other fabrics with drape. View B is particularly attractive in small-print fabrics with sheer flounces.