{1950s} Coffee Date Dress

ElaineMay over at BurdaStyle posted a free pattern, the Coffee Date Dress way back in 2009. I’ve been thinking about making it since then but only got around to it now. I had just over two yards of a rust colored 1970s permament press double knit – not the ideal fabric, but something I needed to use up. Something along the lines of the Coffee Date dress seemed about the right thing to make out of it, beyond some sort of 1970s power suit.


Instead of the Coffee Date Dress skirt, I used the pattern from Butterick 5748, one of the vintage reproduction patterns Butterick has issued in the past few years. It’s a simple circle skirt and went really well with the bodice.

I did have some issues with the bodice pattern on the Coffee Date Dress pattern. The waist was about 3 inches too big and I had to take a large wedge out of the size – the same size wedge as the waist dart. I thought that was rather unusual, probably because the pattern had been graded strangely. The pattern fits wonderfully besides that. I think it’d look nicer on a gal with less wide shoulders – the bodice fits rather slimmly on the shoulders, almost to the point where it needs a racer back bra underneath. One other tiny qualm is that the bodice ruffle guide lines aren’t graded. I used the old grade lines from the original pattern (32″ bust vs a 36″ bust) and it’s a smaller footprint, ruffle wise, than the original pattern.

The fabric is a double knit, so I didn’t hem the skirt or the ruffle. Simple and easy! I already had the thread and fabric, so the whole dress cost $1.50 – the price of a zipper!


2 thoughts on “{1950s} Coffee Date Dress

  1. Hilary says:

    Maybe you could teach me how to sew? Maybe I could just contract out to you? Maybe you could make me a dress like that that I could nurse in? Also, when’s the weddin’?

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