Sew For Victory Sewing Challenge


I’ve been busy wrenching away in the garage, working on my very first engine rebuild for my 1955 Studebaker and blogging about it on – but when Lucky Lucille announced Sew for Victory 2.0 in March I couldn’t resist! I’d found out about last year’s Sew for Victory just as it ended and was super excited to see it come around again! Sew for Victory is a sewing challenge centered around making something 1940s style…right up my alley!


I couldn’t quite pin down what to make at first, there’s a few vintage patterns in my stash I’ve always wanted to try out. With inspiration from Retro Reporter‘s 2014 Wardrobe Goals, I decided to go with items that could become staples in my own wardrobe…no fancy dresses, as much as I love them they just don’t get enough use! I’ve adored this vintage Simplicity pattern #1906 ever since finding it, and the fact that the date is handwritten in the top corner, 11/10/48, landed it definitively in the right era.

sew-for-victory-simplicity-1906-shirt-bias-facingBeing that it’s sized for a 32″ bust, and I’m quite a bit larger than that, the necessary pattern modifications had been a deterrent. With 6 weeks on the schedule for Sew for Victory, I decided it was enough time for me to buckle down and start measuring. Once I’d copied over the original pattern to pieced together paper grocery bags, I began altering it according to my measurements. By the time I was finished I was sure that I’d miscalculated…the pattern pieces looked SO big! After double checking my calculations I went for it – either this shirt was actually going to fit my bust correctly for once or it would be a tent.

Rather than use muslin, I had some dainty cotton laying around and decided to use it – that way if it actually fit I could continue to sew it up as a wearable garment. As the shirt came together I was super surprised that it did in fact fit…actually, quite perfectly!

The vintage pattern called for single bias facing and while I pieced it out of the bits of fabric I had left, I realized that a modern pattern just doesn’t use self-cut bias anymore…and I think it’s a shame. A little bit of patience and you’ve got a terrific way to bind an edge or add a better finish to your garment.



At the end I had trouble deciding which buttons to use, as I love collecting vintage buttons and have acquired quite the little collection, but was persuaded to go with a simple choice.


For a little flair at the end I added a lace collar to adorn the neckline. Although the collar was originally made to be sewn directly into the seam, I cut the design portion of it out and tack-stitched it directly to the fabric. I have two other fabrics I’d like to make this shirt out of, but I didn’t have time to complete more than just this first shirt within the deadline for Sew for Victory. Perhaps if I hadn’t of gotten sidetracked and sewn two other things I would have completed another #1906 shirt!


Before a trip to Austin for Lone Star Round Up, I really wanted a new cute spring skirt. I loved this cotton I found at JoAnn’s and designed a super simple skirt using almost exactly the 2 yards of fabric I had! sew-for-victory-70s-shirt

I also made a wrap shirt from a ’70s era pattern (Simplicity #6292)… All of that and I also managed to get my engine put back in my Studebaker last weekend…not long now and I’ll be driving down the road again looking pretty! Now I call that Victory! Thanks to Rochelle at Lucky Lucille for organizing this!

Happy Trails,



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