Thursday, June 8, 2023

Wear Your Retro to Expo Day!

NOTE: This post was first published several years ago. A glitch at Google unpublished this information. We have re-posted for the Pattern and styling content. The year of this event was 2020, right before the COVID outbreak.

The Sewing and Stitchery Expo has long been the place to show off your creative garment finesse, and this year will be no different! Having attended the expo as a vendor since 2012, year after year it's been a pleasure to watch people go from simply reminiscing to boldly embracing the mainstream return to vintage. Have you made the move to retro? If you like to feel beautiful, confident, and love getting compliments, then why hesitate?

Hello, my name is Laura Nash and I am the owner, designer, patternmaker, and instructor at Sew Chic Pattern Company where I design "Modern Patterns with Vintage Style"  at Today I'm going to help you visualize how easy it is to make the move to retro, and hopefully debunk any arguments you may have against adopting this trend for yourself.  So get ready to plan your expo retro wardrobe!

Friday, Feb 28 is "Wear Your Retro to Expo Day!"

My Expo Team at booth #923/925

Retro Style, also known as "vintage inspired," is about a return to the clothing styles of the early first half of the 20th century and ranges from totally authentic looks  to second hand vintage or new vintage inspired separates that are paired with totally modern elements and accessories.

Premonition #LN1922
What is truly vintage can get confusing, but typically garments have lots of unique details, use classic fabrics, and feminine silhouettes. Pair your outfits with a simple Mary Jane or ballerina flat shoe. Classics like these can go with anything.

Spin Skirt #LN1209
   To give your outfit a more authentic air, add accessories such as belts, gloves, a small hat, or a fascinator.

If you've never worn a petticoat before, you can ease into it with a petticoat with less fullness. One word of caution.  Not enough fullness, or fullness in the wrong body areas can add visual weight and make you look fat. What you are looking for is structure to enhance the shape and  silhouette of your dress or skirt, filling in the area around your legs. The fuller your skirt circumference or the heavier the fabric is, the more fullness your petticoat needs to help the garment hold its shape. Lighter fabrics and less fullness look great with a lighter petticoat.

Gatsby #LN1923 skirt and pant
My standard go-to top for skirts and pants is a plain (often white) t-shirt worn with a button down sweater that matches my separate. I admit that I have a whole drawer full of these sets!

Phantom Pant and Jacket #LN1106

Retro need not be form fitting. At first glance, this is the pattern everyone calls my "Lucille Ball" outfit! Envision yourself wearing this stylish silhouette!

Myrtlewood  #LN7401
 Have you ever said to yourself  "I'd like to wear retro" but think you're just too old? Let me introduce you to Judy! Isn't she adorable in this cotton house dress? She is the focal point of the room! Age is no reason to avoid wearing what you love.

Southern Belle #LN8503 Plus Size
Maybe you think you can't wear retro because you have a full figure?  Not so! Wear styles that smooth over the tummy, flare at the skirt and broaded the shoulders to give the illusion of an hourglass figure.  Notice how my friend Jocelyn has accessorized with a bright bag and wears a flower in her hair to draw the eye to her face. These bright colors make us happy to just look at her!

Southern Belle #LN8503 Misses Size
Think creatively when considering your favorite retro looks. Southern Belle displays formally but is easily  made to look casual and visa versa as above.

Noelle Coat #LN1721
As with any project, I encourage my students to add a unique detail that will lean it toward their personality and give it that "pizzazz" that makes it uniquely their own. If you'd like more info on how to dress retro, check out my 1 needle expo class #1039 "Harmony in design, dress, and body type" or my trunk show #1040 "Style Me Vintage."

Join me and my booth crew at the Pavilion  #925/923 at 5pm Friday for a little Soiree and celebrate your style of Retro with us!


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