If you follow me on Instagram, you might know that I’m quietly making my way through Gertie Sews Jiffy Dresses this summer. I made a little cotton Popover from a long neglected cut in my stash, and knocked up a quick-and-dirty Chemise Dress for a rare evening out, but I really wanted the book for this pattern: The Swirl. If you don’t already know, swirl dresses were popular in the 40’s and 50’s as a day dress, and they were essentially wrap dresses that overlapped and tied in the back (in contrast to the latter-day classic DVF wrap dress and what feels like all subsequent modern iterations of the concept), “swirling” around the body in an easy all-in-one, throw on and go.
I particularly loved the plaid version in the book, with the quirky double pocket, so when I stumbled on this beautiful 100% Pure Linen Fabric, I thought it would be a match made in heaven. The only hard part of the decision was Turquoise or Coral. It’s got a good weight to it, and a lovely crinkly texture. The weave is on the looser side, which makes for a lovely summer dress, but do note that it won’t thank you for skipping any stabilising steps. I have to admit that this didn’t come together in a “jiffy" exactly, because I spent a lot of time time futzing about with stabilising (basting, stay stitching, interfacing, topstitching in places; you name it), but also because I struggled with the fit. 
How hard can it be, you ask? It wraps, after all. Well, I didn’t muslin (error), didn’t shorten the bodice (error), and didn’t adjust for my narrow shoulders (error). I was rewarded with a ridiculously gaping back neckline. A post swayback adjustment has more or less fixed the gaping (I literally just darted out a whacking great wedge of the lower back), but the point at which the back bodice pieces wrap in the back is still a little lower than I’d like, and I would make different adjustments next time. Live and learn. While I’m at it, the skirt overlap could be a little more generous for my taste (I don’t want to worry every time there’s a stiff breeze), but it’s still a lovely pattern that I will definitely revisit. 
In the end, I’m really happy with the dress. The fabric is indeed, completely perfect for it - and a great price. It would also be wonderful for my beloved sack dresses, or something girly and twirly like a B6453. It’s summery, easy-going, good quality linen with a beautiful texture - what more could you ask for? There’s something of a misconception about vintage style, I think, that it’s all glam, glam, glam. People of all eras needed casual clothes too, easy clothes. I’m interested in comfort, as you may know, and practicality, but with a spin sometimes. A swirl even. 
Thanks for reading, and please forgive that last pun - I couldn’t resist. 
Jo xx