Friday, January 19, 2007

What is Three Armhole Dress?

I have found several of these pattern from the 1960s. They are jiffy dresses all dating from 1966-69. They look like they could be good beach dresses to me. I've have found several designs of them for women and girls. I found references to people making them as their first Home Ec. project. They are sometimes called a three armhole dress or a wrap-arounder dress. If you want to find one on ebay - you will have to search for a wrap arounder.

You see above: McCall's 9181, McCall's 9109, Simplicity 8080, Simplicity 7484 B or Simplicity 7484 A, Butterick 4699, Simplicity 7572
If you want your daughter to match you try Simplicity 7617, Simplicity 7518 and Butterick 4698.

I have a few for sale on my website Patterns from the Past Simplicity 60's dresses or Patterns from the Past McCall's 60's dresses. Maybe you can alter one into quick high fashion, or as a new beach dress!
Additional information: according to the McCall's 9181 pattern. The term "wrap-arounder" is a trademark of the McCall corporation. I keep searching and finding more variations on this pattern, all from the late 1960s.


Devorah said...

For the novice sewer ... where is the third armhole? Is it called that because the dress seems to wrap around?

Oldpatterns said...

The 3rd armhole is either on the right or the left side. It depends on which way you wrap the dress. The dress is usually a long rectangle with 3 holes in the top. Stick your right arm in the dress, then the left, wrap it around again and insert the right. It is simple wrap around dress.

cj said...

Back in 1967 I found this little 3-arm dress pattern after my 3 year old daughter broke her arm and was in a large cast. Dressing her was next to impossible. These dresses were great. I now have 2 great grandaughters and I'd love to find a pattern about size 2, so I can start over.

figgys said...

I love this dress! Do you know how they used to close the dress "back in the day".

Oldpatterns said...

The patterns just wrap around.

Anonymous said...

I had several of these when I was little, and I made one of them myself. It was how I learned to apply bias binding!

I just loved them, it was so easy to put on and very comfortable too.

It held itself in place because of the way the third armhole overlapped, no ties to come undone, and the overlap was deep enough that it never flapped open.

Awesome dress, and I was wishing I had one this past hot summer.

Lisa said...

How wonderful! My mom would always tell me the story of her favorite 3 hole armdress that she would wear everyday. She is 53 now and says if she could find one today, she would probably wear it! I plan on finding the pattern to purchase the Butterick version and make both one for myself and mom. Love!

Anonymous said...

My mom had one and my sister and I each had one to match. We used them over our "good clothes" when we were ready to go to church or someplace special and needed to be sure and stay clean.