Summer of 1962- McCall’s 6340

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Here are the highlights of August 1962:

  • Actress/ Icon Marilyn Monroe passes away
  • Nelson Mandela is arrested
  • Patsy Cline releases “Sentimentally Yours”
  • Cuban Missile Crisis
  • Berlin Wall riots
  • 1st Mediterranean Grand Prix
  • NASA launches the Mariner 2 to Venus
  • Jamaica and Trinidad & Tobago become independent countries.

Actually I didn’t realize this at first, but my dress would work for the Sew Weekly Reunion.  I never got to participate when it was going on but I wanted to at least try to do a couple.  But I was sick Friday and couldn’t take pictures.  Then Saturday was too hot for makeup.  Sunday was too wet.  I got my pictures done today but it was too late to participate.

The Facts

Fabric: 100% cotton

Notions: Thread from stash I didn’t care about what color I used so there is some light pink, white, and light yellow. The pattern is too busy to tell the thread changes colors mid-way through the hem.

Pantone Challenge colors: Koi and Vivacious

mccall 6340

Pattern: (post a picture of the pattern) McCall’s 6340 (Copyright 1962 McCall’s 6340 sewing pattern for misses retro Muu muu in two lengths. Four-gore muu muu, in choice of two lengths, with or without raglan sleeves. Muu muu is gathered to faced neckband at back and front. Contrasting, gathered ruffles in sleeve facing seams of longer muu muu. Shorter muu muu has gathered, self-fabric ruffle on lower edges; separate tie belt.)

Year: 2013

Time to complete: 4 hours total

First worn: Labor day weekend

Wear again? Yes. I adore that it is cute and fun. An easy wear for the heat wave we are having.

Total Cost: $22.00

I decided to go to the fabric store after I wasn’t able to find a decent sized watermelon for Toby (family doggie) one evening. Isn’t a fabric store where everyone wants to go to after a disappointment? I was able to find a cute light weight plaid cotton fabric in the clearance section. I couldn’t wait to cut the pattern out, so I didn’t pre-wash the fabric. I know this is bad but the pattern I picked is for bust size 38 to 40, so I think I should be alright if it shrinks in the wash. I may only put it in the dryer once to shrink it a little.

The pattern is super simple. It is perfect for those wanting to try out vintage pattern and for those just learning to sew. It isn’t highly fitted and makes an adorable summer dress with a belt. For it being a 1962 pattern, the style is still very current.  Very important a belt is needed otherwise it is a huge tent on.  No zipper or fasteners so it worked out perfect for me to try to get over my machine disappointments. I was able to get it half way finished in 2 hours. That was cutting and mostly piecing together. After that two hours I was missing a ruffle, finished arms, finishing back of neck and hemming.

I didn’t do any pattern alterations except for shortening the pattern. I started with about 2 inches. After piecing most of it together I took off another 4 inches of length. I also took in the side seams a couple of inches on each side. I did end up with a dress that is probably a little too big but makes a perfect loose summer dress with a belt. If I make it again, I may want to consider taking a couple of inches out of the center front and the center back seams instead of the side seams. Also, I probably should interface the neckline. The shoulder seams stick out a little. I think washing and wear should help this out some.

Thinking of other possible fabric choices it would have to be some sort of light weight woven like a rayon Challis or cotton lawn.  A knit fabric would possibly stretch out (especially on the maxi length) and may not gather as nicely on the neckline and the ruffle.

I sort of want to make the maxi-length dress. I haven’t quite decided yet on whether I should. But after seeing this dress completed, I have been considering it even more. It would definitely have to be sleeveless (view B) otherwise it will look like I am playing dress up because it is just too big and overwhelming for shorter people with the sleeves that have ruffles at the end. Anyways I am not sure I like the ruffles at the end of the sleeves for view A.

I picked the highlights of August 1962 from the Wikipedia article.  There are many other events that I didn’t include.

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