Patterns from the past - styling inspiration

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Every now and then I have a little wander around the internet, searching for "square neck dress" patterns. This style has been a basic staple of wardrobes since the 1940s, and I love seeing all of the different ways it's been styled. This one is from the 1960s, and I have to admit to LOVING the hat!


The orange dress in the middle of this late 1970s pattern ticks two of my personal favourite boxes - elbow-length sleeves (bonus points for puffiness), and a ruffle at the hem. I can imagine a sleeveless one layered over the high-neck version too, for winter warmth. 


This one is from the early 1960s. It's not clear, but I think it's supposed to be a nightdress. The version on the left goes all the way to the floor, and again, I do love a puffy sleeve. A nightmare to squash underneath a cardigan, but so cute! And the one at the back with the ruffle and the belt? Definitely not a style to be confined to the bedroom! 


Aaah, the 1980s. More belts, more ruffles, more puffed sleeves. This depiction could only be improved with blue mascara and a pair of pixie boots. 


The 1970s bring a lot of fantastic versions of this dress, often in children's sizes. I love its versatility, from floor length all the way up to blouse. And the little red t-bar shoes on the right? Yes please! 


This is a slightly more grown-up version of the 1970s look, perhaps just ticking over into the early 80s - it's really hard to tell with some of these. I love the angel sleeves, and the almost crop-top version on the right. And just look at that button detail on the cuffs of the long sleeves! 

I'm thinking that sleeves and ruffles are going to need to make an appearance on some dresses near you very soon...

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