So, one of my birthday presents to myself was Make and Mend for Victory which was published in 1942 by the Spool Cotton Company. Chapter 5a deals with converting a men's suit to a woman's suit! If you've ever been confusied about turning one garment into another, this chapter is for you.
In the chapter, old men's suits were converted to women's suits using three contemporary patterns of the day, Hollywood 949, Advance 2997, and Vogue 9137. Prior to thinking about the pattern or the layout, one needs to acquire an old men's suit, too worn for daily wear, as is, but in goo enough condition to warrent a restyle. For instance, severely worn cuffs on sleeves and pants might make the suit look too tacky for your man to wear, but if the main of the suit is in good condition, you're in business! What? Your man doesn't wear suits? No problem! Head on down to your thrift store and look for a larger sized men's suit. These can often be had for a few dollars, when the wool suiting would cost scads if new!
Next, clean the suit in whatever manner you plan to use for your finished garment. This will assure pre-shrinking, as well as give you nice clean fabric to work with.
Next, become best friends with your seam ripper and take the entire garment apart. Save those buttons, and any detailing you think you can use. Press all of the pieces flat for a proper layout. Your pattern is laid out on the pieces as in this example (using Hollywood 949):
As you can see, the women's pattern fits into the pieces salvaged from the man's suit! The sew your pattern as you normally would, you Goddess of Ecological Reuse!
Linked to: Frugally Sustainable, The Thrifty Home