A Vintage Silk Slip (Simplicity 4218 by allie J.)

Simplicity 4218 | allie J. | alliemjackson.com

Hello, Sewcialists! I’m Allie and I typically post my vintage creations over at allie J. When I heard the theme this month was lingerie, I thought it would be the perfect time to peek into a vintage slip pattern I purchased a little while ago, but hadn’t gotten around to creating.

Simplicity 4218 | allie J. | alliemjackson.com

This slip, Simplicity 4218, was published in the late 50s or early 60s (my preferred era, to which Mad Men very kindly lent its name). It’s cut from a bias cut cotton/silk blend left over from making my wedding dress. I find that where I live (North Carolina in the US), it’s really hard to find practical, pretty slips–the kind that you wear, you know, under clothes. Victoria’s Secret-style slips, and shapewear, yes, but a plain slip is more difficult to find. As I love wearing vintage dresses, a vintage slip seemed like a fun addition to my wardrobe.

Simplicity 4218 | allie J. | alliemjackson.com

The instructions for this slip were strange–in my opinion, you could really tell it was intended to be a utilitarian, everyday garment. There was lots of top-stitching! For example, the bust part was attached by sewing the right side of the lining to the wrong side of the skirt part, then turning the the outside part of the bust and topstitching it down–so you would get a whole row of topstitching on the exterior. I actually did this! Unsurprisingly, it looked awful, and I seamripped it out and hand stitched the seam instead.

Simplicity 4218 | allie J. | alliemjackson.com

If you wanted to machine this whole thing, I would suggest sewing the exterior bust part to the skirt right sides together, then stitching in the ditch to get the bust lining.

Simplicity 4218 | allie J. | alliemjackson.com

The skirt seams are french seamed and I hand stitched the lining as well. Excuse my mediocre stitches!

Simplicity 4218 | allie J. | alliemjackson.com

If I were writing this pattern, I would also sew the straps into the bodice seam. As written, I just stitched them down after the fact.
I really enjoyed this project, it was very calming because of all the hand stitching. When you are sewing with soft, pretty silk, it can be nice to put the extra effort into sewing by hand. The pattern comes with three items to add to your lingerie wardrobe: this full slip, a half slip (which I also made and blogged here), and “panties” which are like a shorts slip.

Thank you so much for having me, Sewcialists readers! I’m looking forward to seeing everyone else’s lingerie creations as well 🙂


21 thoughts on “A Vintage Silk Slip (Simplicity 4218 by allie J.)

  1. Hey Allie, I’m in NC also. I haven’t sewn any fine fabrics before, and I have a lot to learn. What needle (s) and tension (s) did you use?

  2. I really love the double darts and angled underbust seam – it’s all so elegant and flattering! Do you figure you’ll have to hand wash it, or just toss it in the wash? It turned out beautifully – and thank so much for writing this guest post for us! 🙂

    1. Thank you so much for having me! I did pre-wash the silk, so I could probably machine wash it, and I think if I had machined all the seams I would, but since I did so much hand sewing (and I don’t trust it!) I’ll be hand washing this I think.

  3. It looks beautiful! You’re onto something with your handstitching. Looks pretty neat to me already!
    Those double bust darts are very pretty too!

      1. That would be pretty. There’s tons of different types of lace out there, and there’s definitely types that are thinner/more appropriate for lingerie. Every time I think I have enough lace in my wardrobe, I find another piece of really cool lace, and in my finding I’m obliged to figure out a way to showcase it.

  4. Hello,I am new here,the straps would have been placed on the outside is cos it woild have been easier to replace them,fabric and trimmings would still be scarce in the uk,and you always made do and mend,lovely work by the way,jane

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