Category Archives: pattern line


New Pattern Day! WWII Air Raid Suit or Coverall Pattern



Hooray!!!  New pattern day!

Introducing Phyllis- named for my grandmother’s cousin who worked on airplanes during WWII.

Phyllis is an “Air Raid Suit”, or Coverall.  Air Raid Suits were called Siren Suits in the UK, and were meant to be pulled on in the event of an air raid.  They were also used as coveralls, for our sisters on the home front.

The original 1940’s  pattern description reads:

“A well-fitted one piece air raid suit or coverall that’s easy to slip into.  You’ll find it a most suitable costume for defense work and outdoor activity.”


If you’re a long time blog reader, this may look familiar to you because I made one waaay back in 2011.  It’s about time I got around to finishing the pattern ;)


You can pre-order the mailed, printed pattern here.

If you don’t want to wait, the e-pattern is available now on my website.  Or, if you’re in the EU, you can buy the e-pattern on my Etsy shop.  Not equipped to do digital vat on my website, but you can grab it on Etsy!

Coming up next I’ll post more photos, since this qualifies for the Historical Sew Monthly challenge for this month, too!

Hope you love the new pattern! Happy sewing!


New Pattern Time! 1940’s Hats + How to Tie a Turban Video


I just finished up another new pattern!  YAY!


I’ve called this one the 1940’s Hat Wardrobe because that’s pretty much what it is!  It’s got all your basic 1940’s hats needs covered.

Perfect vintage hats to fit a variety of situations.  The beret and fedora look great with suits and separates.  The looped turban is dressy enough for dresses.  The wrapped turban is a great option for sportswear or for the WWII factory working gal.


I made the beret out of a wool/rayon felt I bought at a local quilt shop.

fedora2 fedora5

The fedora is also made from felt.  The decoration was my invention- the original pattern calls for just a simple tied ribbon.  Perhaps if you want a blog tutorial I’ll show you how to make this trimming.

tirban3 turban4

I made the looped turban from a vintage taffeta.  This one is super fun!

redturban1 redturban3

The wrapped turban is perfect for the WWII Home Front!  I made mine from a reproduction quilting cotton with little kitty cats on it.

Thanks to Fat Quarters Quilt Shop for stocking such darling fabrics and great felts!

 If you think tying a turban is beyond your skills- it’s not!  They’re really simple, especially when you sew the base from the pattern.  Check out the video that I made that shows you how!

You can buy the mailed, printed pattern here, or if you’d rather print it yourself at home, you can buy the e-pattern here.

Happy Sewing!

Sample Photos! New 1930s Blouse & Bias Skirt Pattern

I have some photos to share with you of my newly made samples of the brand new 1930s blouse and skirt pattern that’s now released!!

I can’t even begin to tell you how much I love this pattern!  I think it will be one of my basic go-to patterns for vintage wardrobe basics.  Between this and the Smooth Sailing pattern, my separates wardrobe is covered!

The blouse takes SO well to the cute printed cottons.  I know what I’m making more of when I come across printed cottons I don’t want to pass up.  I’d also love to try the long sleeve version in a more cuddly fabric- maybe a soft wool blend- with a zip up the front for the sporty look.  The pattern does allow for a zip-front blouse!

Although not the most flattering pic of me, this picture shows how fabulous the drape of the skirt is!  The pattern envelope shows the skirt a bit more form fitting, but I was so thrilled that it hangs loosely.  The bias makes it feel so comfy and flowy.  I really think I need one in wool, one in satin, and maybe a few more in linen, like this one is.

The skirt actually runs on the long side for the “street length”.  The sample I’m wearing I shortened three inches, and it’s still long (and I’m a bit taller than average).  But hey, don’t forget, bias skirts of pretty much the exact same cut were popular in the 1940s as well (pre-rationing), so if you want to make this work for 40s, just shorten the skirt a bit more.  It would transition great between decades!

Here’s the original pattern image again, so you can compare sample photos with the illustration.

If you missed the prior post with more info on the pattern, don’t forget to check it out!

This pattern is available as both a wide format, mailed pattern, and as a downloadable e-pattern.

You buy the printed skirt and blouse combo here.  It’s available ONLY through me, because this pattern takes up way too much paper to be offer it thorough any of my lovely pattern vendors who stock my line (woe!).  But, I’m cutting you a bit of a deal that way, so if you think you’ll want both pieces down the line, order the set.

You can buy the printed blouse pattern here.

You can buy the printed skirt here.

E-patterns for the blouse and skirt separately are available for $9.99 each.  But be forewarned, this is a mighty big pattern pack, so the pattern sheet alone (not including instructions) takes up a whopping 40 pages each!

You can buy the E-pattern for the blouse here.

You can buy the E-pattern for the skirt here.

New E-Pattern! 1879 Victorian Dinner Bodice

I’m SO excited to announce the latest E-Pattern! Yay!

The newest pattern is a Victorian dinner bodice from the Natural Form era.  It is from an original antique period pattern, from March, 1879.  This is the first time Wearing History has delved into Victorian era clothing patterns :)

Originally made in faille & pompadour cloth, this bodice would be STUNNING for your Victorian era impression, your steampunk ensemble, or, as some ladies on my Wearing History Facebook page mentioned, it would even be fun in our modern era as a jacket over jeans!

This pattern has been “decoded” from original period source material.  In case you’ve never seen the old patterns as they were originally published in periodicals of the time, this is the pattern sheet which this pattern came from:

The patterns were in single sizes (not multi-size), with all garment patterns included in that issue overlapping one another.  The dressmaker would then trace out the pieces for their garment, as indicated in the legend on the side, by following different dotted line markings.  Luckily for you, I have done this hard work for you (as they DO make you go a bit cross eyed), so you can jump right in to mock up making or resizing, as needed.  The pattern is digitally drawn so is clean and crisp, and follows the original period pattern lines.

Included with this pattern is the original written period pattern instructions, transcribed from the original source material, as well as some added tips to help you with making your mock up and things to keep in mind while fitting.

You can purchase the E-pattern for this 1879 Victorian Dinner Bodice on my website now for $7.

Visit my site for more information on this new E-Pattern!

I’m hoping to offer more lovely Victorian and Edwardian patterns from original period sources in the future :)

Introducing the Newest Pattern! WWII Home Front Overalls

I’m happen to announce the latest pattern addition to Wearing History, which is now available for Pre-Order!

A perfect addition to your 1940s wardrobe, these WWII Home Front Overalls, Playsuit, and Trousers are both functional and fashionable!  Every WWII gal needed a pair of trousers or overalls when working toward Victory, and with this pattern you can make this vintage essential for your wardrobe!

This pattern features a lovely V neckline, straps that criss-cross at the back, a set in belt, and trousers with optional front pockets.  This can be worn over a blouse (blouse NOT included in this pattern, blouse pictured is from Smooth Sailing pattern), but the overalls hit high enough that you could wear them without a blouse, as in the late 1930’s “Farmerette” fashion, or as a playsuit with shorts.  The front of the pants have a tuck on each side, which is hidden when the pockets are used.  The tuck will be visible if no pockets are used.  If made without the top, these make excellent trousers, and when made in denim and with the pockets, they are great 1940’s jeans!

This pattern is a Wearing History Resto-Vival pattern based on an original period mail order pattern from the WWII era.  Unlike the other Resto-Vival patterns, which are follow the outline of original period pattern pieces, this pattern needed serious corrections in order to make the pattern fit together properly.   I have edited, corrected, and improved this pattern so you can be sure the pieces will go together as they should.  This pattern retains authentic period fit, including the lower crotch rise length that is different than the rise in today’s trousers.

This pattern includes pattern instructions based on on the original instructions.  Some notes have been added to the instructions to aid in construction.

 This pattern was originally available in Misses sizes 30″ bust to 40″ bust, but this pattern has been graded to expand the sizes to MISSES size 30″ bust through 46″ bust.  Larger sizes are based off the same misses size pattern and ARE NOT plus size.

This pattern is available in 3 sizes per packet.

This is the first Wearing History pattern that will be available as a mailed, printed pattern OR as a print-at-home E-pattern.  The expected release date is May 9th.


As a special promotion, until the pattern release date you can pre-order this pattern for $24!  That is a $6 discount off of the regular $30 price.


The e-pattern is not available for pre-order, but will be placed on the site on the release date for $9.99.


This pattern is an excellent match for the Victory Hats Pattern (which includes a factory worker cap to keep your hair in place for your Rosie factory worker impression) or the Smooth Sailing Pattern, which is the pattern for the blouse pictured here with the overalls and includes my top-rated WH original pattern for vintage trousers.  Remember, two patterns ship for the same price as one!  Patterns ordered with this pre-order will ship after the release date.


Thanks so much for supporting my little indie small business!  And if you love this new pattern don’t forget to share with your friends :)

1940s Bra Sample Photos!

It’s about time!  This was one of the first patterns I did as a “Resto-Vival”, back in 2010, and it’s finally time I actually sewed one up and took some photos!

At work recently, I had been given the task to create 1940s undergarments for stock (I’m currently working at a theatre), so I brought a printout of my handy dandy Wearing History digital bra pattern with me and set to work.


Although the original vintage pattern was stated a 32 (no up size), reviewers had said that this bra ran large.  I found this to be the case as well.  The dress form is 35″ around the bust and about a B cup, and it fit very well.  I have edited the item description to note this.

A few little things I did for decoration that weren’t called for in the original pattern were the topstitching details.  I found it easiest to finish the seams with a bias binding on the inside, so decided to go with contrast thread and use it as accents, and then continue the motif on the bottom piece of the cups.  I also added real bra straps (not of ribbon or fabric as called for in the original  and added a little bow at center front.  The original pattern called for bias binding around the edges but I went with a bias facing instead, making it 1/2″ shorter at top and bottom than it would have been with facing.

All in all, I don’t know why I procrastinated on making vintage bras for so long!  It went together super easy and very quickly.  I’ve actually got a pale pink one partially constructed already, and can see making more.  It’s funny leaving a pattern review of my own pattern, but there you have it!

If you want to try out your own version, you can purchase the digital download on my website for this 1940’s Brassiere Pattern.

Finished UFO Project, and a Peek at Things to Come…

Did you know that The Dreamstress is hosting a neat Facebook sewing motivation group for this year?  It’s called the Historical Sew Fortnightly, and every two weeks there’s a new challenge.

I missed the last challenge, but I got this one finished in time for the UFO theme (unfinished object).  This jacket was based on an 1899 jacket pattern from La Mode Illustree, and I don’t mind saying now, that this is the pattern that I’ve slowly been working on in my free time as the next Wearing History pattern release.  The project was started a year or two ago, with an original pattern, but gradually morphed into a grande project, as I kept finding more and more that I needed to do to make the pattern more accessible and understandable (markings, seam allowances, grainlines, and instructions were all missing, and the pattern pieces needed alterations to get them to fit together correctly).  I’ll have more info on it once it’s completely finished and I have the pattern up on my site, but for now I’m just glad to share preview pics I took at work today :) I went all out on this jacket and did a bunch of tailoring on it to make it extra nice.