My finished 1940s Swing Dress

I love how my Sew for Victory dress has turned out! I finished my 1940s Swing Dress from Sense and Sensibility patterns for the Sew for Victory Sewalong last week but found it a bit tricky to find time for photos. If you’re catching up check out my previous post. I’ve been playing around with my camera a bit and tried to tell a bit of a story with these photos. I quite like how they’ve turned out but please let me know what you think.


I love the fit of the finished dress. It’s quite fitted at the waist and flares over the hips which is good for my body shape

The dress was a dream to make. The instructions are not clear at all unfortunately but there is a post on Casey’s Elegant Musings from her sewalong for this dress with some pretty good instructions that do help. The yolk in particular is a bit confusing to sew but once I’d figured it was very easy. In the end I threw away the instructions and read Casey’s post and then just made it up as I went along. I’m delighted with the style. It’s very flattering. I think I’ll make another few in my sewing lifetime!

I used bias binding to finish the seams and hemmed it using my blind hem foot. I probably could have left another inch or so in the hem to be more appropriate for 1940s style. However, I think I’ll get more wear out of the dress if I have it just above the knee.


I picked up these cute flowers when shopping yesterday and thought they’d make for a nice shot

I tried to get the 1940s look using MAC Russian Red lipstick and simple makeup otherwise. I just used a brown eyebrow pencil, mascara and foundation otherwise. I have pretty curly hair which I brushed out to achieve the 1940s look. However it just turned into a crazy frizzy mess so I recurled the top layer and then brushed lightly through the curls.


I used MAC’s Russian Red lipstick to get my 1940s look. I already have curly hair but I also curled my hair a little to reduce frizz and get a more polished look.

I considered making a yellow crochet flower brooch to fasten the front of the dress similar to this one on Ravelry. In the end though I felt that a brooch I already owned was a better fit for this dress. I received this brooch as a present from my Dutch granddad a few years ago. I’ve had it a few years and use it a lot. I also use it when I wear my Nanook closed across the shoulders. I’m not exactly sure how old it is but it’s a very pretty flower design.


To fasten the front I used an antique brooch I got from my grandfather. I’m not sure exactly when it’s from but I thought it went quite well with the dress


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  • http://makesthethings.com Stephanie

    It’s gorgeous and I like the higher hem.

    I love your photos! You look gorgeous and I’m glad you included styling tips.

    • stephanie

      Thanks! I got a new camera so I’m trying to see what it can do. I sometimes have an idea of a look and the type of photos I’m trying to achieve and can’t quite get there yet. Hopefully with this new camera and practice I can :)

  • spinneretta

    Well I think it came out beautifully and looks lovely on you!

    • stephanie

      Thanks! I’ve been wanting to make up this pattern for a long time now so it’s great that it came out well :)

  • http://www.tresbienensemble.com Michelle

    I love it! I’m very far behind on my Sew for Victory Project. Seeing gorgeous 40’s creations like yours helps to inspire me to get into gear and go!

    • stephanie

      Looking forward to seeing what you come up with! There’s still a week and a half to go before the parade so you have time :)

  • http://stagedandreal.wordpress.com strugglesome

    Oh my god, this is so lovely! I adore this, I can’t wait to post about my own 40’s makes. This is so fantastic and the fit is excellent. Well done!

    • stephanie

      Thanks so much :) it was an enjoyable make too (once I’d gotten past the terrible instructions!) and fun to dress up and style it. I look forward to seeing yours

  • http://layerstitchrepeat.blogspot.com Rachel

    Beautiful and elegant. I have this pattern but didn’t get past the muslin as I didn’t understand the instructions, maybe now I’ve been sewing for a bit longer I will take another stab at it, if it looks anything like yours I will be very pleased! Where did you get the fabric? thx

    • stephanie

      Ya the instructions are tricky alright. I would guess you had trouble with the yolk. Casey’s instructions are helpful. Pattern pieces there didn’t match up for me really but I just made it work. Also it wasn’t clear the you had to fold and top stitch the yolk in place. Perhaps I’ll make a little post with the steps I took for that

      • http://layerstitchrepeat.blogspot.com Rachel

        Would be a great help if you do! thx

    • stephanie

      Oh and the fabric I got from my stash. I’m not exactly sure where I picked t up unfortunately!

  • http://www.thimbleandcork.com Kacie

    This is beautiful! The fit is absolute perfection and I love that print. Your hair and makeup compliment the dress very well too.

    • stephanie

      Thanks, I tried to get the look right and appropriate for the 1940s. Hopefully I’ll get more and more used to my camera so I can improve for the Elisalex dress and future projects :)

  • Liz

    Great photography Steph & the dress is not bad either!!

  • http://megmadethis.blogspot.com MadeByMeg

    gorgeous! you make 1940s look fun and modern!

    • stephanie

      What a lovely compliment! It’s exactly what I was trying to go for :)

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