#vintagepledge · McCall's 5881 · scuba · Sewing · Vintage

Vintage scuba

An oxymoron if ever there was one.

I wonder if the creators of McCall’s 8118 envisaged anyone fashioning their dress in such a fabric?  Given that in the year of its making both the Russians and the Americans were slipping the surly bonds of Earth, vacating their crafts and having a bit of a walk about in space, maybe they did imagine such a fabric.


It’s pretty sturdy, possibly it would be suitable for orbital undergarments.  Although.   You’d have to watch yourself on re-entry as I suspect the high polyester content would make it a bit of a melty mess of a fire hazard.

It was the details of this vintage pattern that lured me into a little flutter on a well-known auction site:  Notched shawl collar, welt pockets and a fold-up sleeve finish that you only find out about when you come to construct the thing.

That sleeve finish would sit more satisfyingly in a traditional dress fabric.  The spongy nature of the scuba creates, to my mind at least, a little too much bulk to be attractive.  I’m going to be wearing that sleeve hem flapped firmly down.


For full length photos we’ve got some iPhone selfies:

Thanks to the brilliant Better Pictures Project I’ve been thinking about arm angles and I’ve popped myself into the shade.  So much to learn!  I’ve even had a little dabble at editing, although this feels very much like cheating because I was just tinkering with the filters on instagram:


Finally, I’ve added a new badge to my social sewing area.  I’m a regular user of patterns that some would consider past their prime so I thought that it was about time that I formalise this fandom!  #vintagepledge


4 thoughts on “Vintage scuba

  1. Hi Penny, I love the ‘spongy nature’ comment you left on my blog!

    Well done for thinking outside the box and matching a novel fabric to a (very lovely) vintage style (this kind of adventurous thinking is what I love about sewing blogs). I’d like to have seen all of you in the picture but they’re great pictures! It’s definitely a dress that loves sunshine.

    1. Ah, thanks! I do have a tendency to crop my head out of photos mainly due to vanity. I have a true talent for weird facial expressions, bizarre hair and looking more ancient than I feel in my head.
      Any advice, other than therapy?!

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