Saturday, 17 September 2011

Sprechen Sie Deutsch?

I have traced a pattern from a 1937 Beyers Mode Für Alle for this dress:

Each pattern piece is numbered at the corners, and you match up the corresponding numbers to construct the dress.  I am able to work this out without being able to read the scant instructions, however, this particular pattern has what I first though were tucks on the bodice, short sleeve and pocket, yet it appears from the photo that they are tapered, like darts.  Now, I need to know a) what amount to take out, as all the pattern pieces show are lines and b) are they tucked or tapered to nothing??  From looking at the pattern pieces, I think the pocket and sleeve are likely tucked and the bodice has darts (in the bodice at least).  I can read that it says 'pocket' '1cm', 'bodice' '1/12cm' and 'sleeve' '1/2cm' but my google translation didn't help me further.... I hope someone reading this speaks German AND understands what I am on about!  If so, I would be most grateful if you could leave me a comment!  Here are the pattern pieces and instructions:

It is a size 88 bust, which means the measurements are for a 34 1/2 inch bust, 27 1/2 inch waist and 37 3/4 hip, and I'm approx 35 1/2, 26 1/2, 38 1/2 so hopefully it will fit without too much alteration.  I have no idea what kind of ease it will have so I will make a partial toile (muslin).  I plan on making this in black crepe, and may not embroider the collar, cuffs and pocket flaps but use a patterned fabric instead.  I expect the lack of instructions to cause me quite a few headaches during construction!


  1. I tried my luck in translating the important parts and hope it makes sence to you. Because I still wouldn´t know exactly what to do.
    First the description on the photo: The radial tucks/darts are stitched down with loose hand stitches, purposely visibly blocking.

    Now the description on the pattern:
    For the cording one may calculate for the pockets top 1cm, part 31s top 1/2cm, 33s bottom 1/2cm. They are to be stitched down/topstitched with loose hand stitches with golden threat from the inside, so that they block approx. 1/2cm towards the peak.

    Btw, I nominated you for an award over on my blog.

  2. Oh thanks so much, Katrin! I think that makes sense now... the fact that it says to loosely hand stich now makes sense as I couldn't work out why the stitching was visible on the darts/tucks... I presume I am to shape them like darts, with the ends of the darts reducing to 1/2cm. I will try it and see how I get on! I probably could've picked an easier pattern :-/

    I did see yesterday that you nominated me, thanks :) and I am trying to come up with 7 facts to post ... and then who to nominate!!

  3. This looks just such a lovely dress.I hope you get on well with the translation and making up.I look forward to seeing it finished!!
    Well done on the award!!

  4. Best of luck to you! I did a bra and tap panties pattern from a 1940's German pattern mag last year and it was the single most frustrating sewing project I have ever tried! I hope yours goes smoothly for you!

  5. Yeah, you could have picked another pattern, but this one is great with all its tricky details and I can fully understand your choice :)

    Btw, I just noticed that the photographers name is chicken...

  6. Urban Rustic - Thanks!

    Anna - I've seen your post and thought you did a fantastic job on the bra and panties... if I manage to do half as well I'll be pleased!

    Katrin - I think I will regret the choice :).... ha, I presume that's quite an unusual German name?!

  7. What a lovely dress! Love all the details on it. But it's gonna be really interesting to see how your version of it will come out...If you manage to get pass that translation problem that is... :)

  8. Miss Meadows - I've made a toile and it came together fairly easily, it seems well drafted, now it's just awaiting some fitting tweaks... and a post of my progress!