Aloha! When I returned from Hawaii with my fabric haul, I scoured my pattern stash for things to make out of my new fabrics.  Among my fabrics I had a few with a vertical pattern repeat.  When I searched my patterns, I immediately settled on this one for a first project.  This is a vintage reprint by McCall’s for misses button down vests in two different styles.  One is has a lapel collar, and the other is a rounded neckline, buttoned down the center front.  Both views are lined, which I was not expecting (don’t ask me why – it shouldn’t have been a surprise).  For the lining, I found a neat vintage hunter green acetate that I’ve been storing for over a decade (I took in a huge stash of vintage linings, which has turned out to be a great investment).  This lining had a neat script which read “custom design” in a retro “handwriting” font.  I have no idea how old this lining is – but it looks PRETTY OLD.

Before cutting, I unfolded the pattern and noted the finished garment measurements.  The first thing that stood out is that this pattern is true to size … meaning, you should really cut the size indicated on the back of the package that most closely matches your size.  I picked a size 12 in the shoulders, grading up to a 14 at the armpits for the rest of the top.  I wish I had paid closer attention to the waist measurements, because the waist is truly nipped in and snug on me.  It gives a different look than the relaxed style on the model.  If I were to make this again, I would probably add some more ease to the waist so that it fits more relaxed there.  I found that the bust has plenty of room, so the issue is truly in the waistband sizing.

I did make a couple of alterations to the recommended interfacing.  First, because this is supposed to be a relaxed Hawaiian style garment, I did not interface the entire front of the top, per the instructions.  I only reinforced the arm hole 1.5″, neckline 1.5″, center front buttonhole stand 1.5″, and waist band.  I was very careful to match pattern alignment as I cut, so some of the pieces were not cut according to the instructions.

The construction was pretty straight forward and very easy to follow.  I only changed how the waistband attached to the lining in the final steps by performing a “stitch in the ditch” to catch it on the wrong side (instead of hand-stitching).

For finishing touches, I added topstitching throughout to give it a more “sporty” and relaxed look.  I finished the top off with imported coconut buttons, to complete the “authentic” look.

I am considering making this top again – perhaps the view with lapels – but I would definitely add some more ease to the waistband if I do.

Overall, this pattern has really great drafting and instructions.  I did dock a few points on the sizing due to the misleading model fitting, and some points on the instructions because there are some finishing/trimming/pressing details that are left out, which make it not really suitable for a beginner.

cherry blossoms dc 2021