1954 Cabana Set

August – October 2011

Simplicity pattern #4696

1954 Simplicity #4696 in a 50s style quilting cotton.
About once a year Aaron gets a new Hawaiian shirt. Normally it’s Simplicity pattern #5581, made out of something really kitschy. But this time around I decided to go with an original 1950s pattern. Since he already has an impressive collection of vintage Hawaiians I tried to find a fabric that would be in a different vein. I tracked down this 50s-style modern print. Aaron immediately approved the fabric.
It’s interesting to compare the modern and vintage Simplicity patterns. The vintage has a yoke and is a little smaller. It also has two shirt pockets. The differences are minor with one exception: the very angular collar. I can understand why Simplicity changed this up for the home sewing market! I made a sample first, to work out the interfacing and corner, and am quite pleased with the final collar. The method I learned in Apparel Construction class is similar to the tutorial on Off the Cuff (“Perfect Collar Points,” 10/8/12).
The matching shorts are fun; they have a cute welt pocket. But the elastic waistband proved to be a real sewing challenge. I suspect part of the problem is I don’t sew on an industrial or vintage machine: there’s just not enough weight to hold everything in place. There are some helpful notes at Male Pattern Boldness with regards to elastic (11/17/12). And I’m hoping to at least improve with version two.

Cute welt pocket