Posted by Edelweiss Patterns on April 20, 2014
A Vintage Pink Easter Dress – Hollywood Patterns #1878
Happy Easter! I wanted to show you all the vintage dress which I wore today to church for Easter Sunday. Back in the “good old days”, nearly everyone went to church on Easter (in America, that is), and all the ladies and girls wore their finest outfits for the occasion. Most families, if they could manage, bought new Easter dresses for each female member of the family every year, complete with new hats, gloves, and shoes. I am told that the term “the Easter parade” was coined in New York City in the late Victorian era, when the women’s attire which they “paraded” on their way to church became so elaborate that many people would come to the street corners just to see the spectacle of a fashion parade enroute to church, and to pick their favorite hat from the crowd. Decades later, Irving Berlin penned the song “Easter Parade” in 1933, which was later sung by Bing Crosby in the film Holiday Inn in 1942. Then in 1948, this song was used yet again in a film starring Fred Astaire and Judy Garland, and titled, aptly, Easter Parade.
Well, today is obviously a far cry from the days when everyone would dress up, (or when everyone would go to church for that matter), but I still take the opportunity to do both whenever I possibly can.
I sewed this vintage Easter dress using Hollywood Pattern #1878. Seeing as it was printed in the late 1940s (and possibly into the very early 1950s), it is extremely rare. So I was super excited to find it online a few months ago! This design has a peasant style upper bodice with fitted waist, gathered cap sleeves, and a semi-full skirt.
The material is a floral print cotton batiste, lined with blush pink China silk lining. At the seam between the upper bodice and the cummerbund, I added a pink floral ribbon which has a tiny floral pattern on it quite reminiscent of the larger print.
~It closes with a side zipper, and it’s quite comfortable to wear, especially compared to many vintage dresses! ~
~ The Accessories: The ruched pink gloves and ivory net hat are both vintage pieces that I picked up at an antique shop recently. I don’t know quite how old they are, but they were both in excellent condition. The hat is made from a stiff netting that has flocked polka dots on the material. It might not exactly be an “Easter bonnet with all the frills upon it”, but it at least certainly counts as an Easter hat!
I did this hairstyle as a mixture of two different styles which are demonstrated in the book “Vintage Hairstyles” by Lauren Rennells. If I haven’t mentioned it before, this is my favorite hairstyling book ever!! The author has extensive film experience and is a real pro at 1930s-1960s hairdos. (This is my honest opinion of the book – I am not paid to do a “product review” of it.)
I will note that the late-afternoon lighting today rather washed out the color of the fabric, so unfortunately you can’t see as much of the pattern as I’d like. Nevertheless, I hope that you can still get a good idea of what it looks like! But here is a very non-historically accurate picture (on Pinterest) which I took inside today so that you can get a better idea of what the color is if you wish to see.
I hope you all had a wonderful Easter!