Open Back Altered Version of Vintage McCall's 7145

After seeing this dress in a post by The Fox & She on Instagram I dug through my pattern collection to see what I could use to replicate it. 

Hail, McCall's 7145 circa 1963!

"I can totally do that!", I thought. Just add a ruffle and a waistband and 'bam!'. 

Well, that's not exactly how it went, but I do think it looks similar to the inspiration and I do think I'l wear it often. 

First, I cut the bottom off the bodice front & back pattern pieces and created waistbands. I also had to add fabric for some sort of placket for the back to place the buttons & buttonholes.

I completely ignored the pattern instructions and, successfully, constructed the bodice & lining, without the ruffle, which was fine...but what would have been better is if I had added the ruffle to the exterior bodice pieces before adding the lining because now there is a seam on the inside where the ruffle is attached. NOT a big deal, I'm the only one who knows its there, but it bothers me. 

I was originally going to make the dress the same midi-length as the original, but man, that length is not flattering on me. Couldn't do it, so I hacked about 12" off the bottom and made a big, wide hem.

I still need to add a zipper below the buttons, but frankly, I don't have one that matches, and I did such a good job of hand-stitching those pieces that I'm considering just adding a couple hooks & eyes to close it.

The exterior fabric is from Eureka Fabrics in Eureka, CA that I purchased about 6 years ago when I lived in Humboldt county. It is seriously pretty stuff and if I remember correctly, it was woven in India. 

Though I think the exterior of this dress is darling, I actually may be more proud of the inside. It is fully lined with vintage peach polished cotton that aaaaaalmost feels like satin. It is so beautiful.

I finished the neck & back edges by sewing the lining & exterior right sides together and then turning them right sides out. I then finished the armholes with bias tape and hand-sewed it to the lining to prevent any visible seams from the outside.

There isn't a single unfinished seam on the inside of this dress and that is an accomplishment. I love knowing that garments that take me hours look professional both inside and out,  I think it greatly enhances the quality and appearance of the garment. Would you agree? Check out Colette's "Behind the Seams" to ooh and ahh over garment details with me!

Each little strap across the back is hand-sewn to the lining because I should have inserted the straps before I sewed on the ruffle, but I was still deciding if I wanted them or not. If I make another version of this dress, I will definitely be attaching the ruffle & straps to the exterior fabric before I add the lining. Live and learn. 

What designer clothes have inspired you lately? Were you successful in recreating them? Do you have any fashion blog suggestions for me?

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