Growing up, I was very fortunate to have a mom who A. could sew and B. always offered to sew me an amazing Halloween costume. I don’t have any childhood photos of me online (boo), but rest assured, the costumes were pretty amazing – and I still have them! My mom actually wanted to get rid of them a few years ago–oh, the horror!–but I talked her off the ledge.
Anyhow, every fall my mom and I ventured to the fabric store tosift through the pattern books, looking for the perfect costume. The catalogs offered colorful photos of witches, clowns, fictional characters, and period costumes. These “olde tyme” (pronounced “old-ee time-ee”) patterns gave the essence of historical fashion, but were never meant to replicate the real thing.
Until now! During a recent trip to the fabric store, I stumbled across a wonderful pattern (Simplicity 3727) for a beautiful dress with the description, “Civil War dress from the collections of the Wisconsin Historical Society.” I am assuming that they crafted this pattern from a dress currently in their collection, but the description is all I have to go on. Does anyone know more about this?
Historically accurate patterns have been around for a long time, of course, from both small companies like Past Patterns and giants like the vintage reissues at Vogue. But I was happy to see another mainstream pattern company, Simplicity, sell historically accurate patterns as well.