Sunday, November 11, 2018

A few small things... Woman's World from 1935

Hello my dears,

Today for you I have some scans from a sweet little edition of Woman's World Magazine.
They offered a small selection of mail order sewing patterns and the illustrations were charming enough to merit sharing.

This particular issue is July 1935.

I hope you enjoy.

July 1935 Woman's World Mail Order sewing pattern ads.
 Don't you just love all of the details that have gone into the bodice designs? Bows, capes, button trim and pleats galore - what fun!

July 1935 Woman's World Mail Order sewing pattern ads.
 Notice that even the fashions for young girls have larger shoulder details reminiscent of the women's clothing designs above.

July 1935 Woman's World Mail Order design ads.
I'm really all about those aprons though...

Happy sewing,

Saturday, August 4, 2018

See It Sewn... Simplicity 3511 from a 1960 Catalog

Hello my dears,
In our last See It Sewn Post, we got a look at two sewing patterns with rather underwhelming illustrations. These were patterns that one might normally write off as not-worth-the-trouble; that is, until we got a look at how stunning they could be when cut from the right fabric and styled to perfection.

Today for See it Sewn, we have another pattern from the same 1960 catalog, but the envelope illustration for this dress is far more charming.

Meet Simplicity 3511.

Image courtesy of Pattern Peddler on Etsy.
 The envelope back reveals that the pattern has several nifty features:

"JUNIOR AND MISSES' ONE-PIECE DRESS WITH DETACHABLE COLLAR AND SLEEVE TRIM: Dress has kimono sleeves, with underarm gussets, softly pleated skirt and front button closing. V. 1 has elbow length sleeves, self fabric belt, self collar and contrasting detachable collar and sleeve trim. V. 2 has stand-up collar, short sleeves and purchased belt."

Our first glimpse from the catalog points out that the pockets are indeed as gloriously large as the illustration would have you believe. Just think of all the things a modern girl could fit in those... no need for a purse! No, this lady has it all on her including keys, cell phone, day planner, a snack, lipstick, garage door opener and Glock 19, all with room to spare!

Our second catalog picture does the "American Classic" coat dress even more justice in a forest green print and crisp, fresh white removable collar and cuffs. One could really have so much fun also making this dress in a demure solid fabric and then letting large, stand-out vintage buttons in bold contrast do all of the talking.

Happy sewing,

Copies of this pattern can usually be found from your favorite pattern sellers on Etsy.
Below is a link to a search that will show you who currently has it for sale.

Simplicity 3511

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Sew Expensive... Vogue Couturier 794 and her many, many gores.

Hello my dears,
Today for you, I have a rather interesting pattern from 1954 for you to study.
Vogue Couturier No. 794 has made it onto our Sew Expensive list due to both sale price, and because of a few unique design details.
Mainly gores.
...Sooooooo many goooooores.

Image courtesy of Ebay seller Vintage-Newsstand.
This lovely little kimono-sleeved Vogue 794 sold recently on eBay for $100 Australian Dollars, or about $74 US Dollars.

Auction.Image courtesy of Ebay seller Vintage-Newsstand.

The true cost however, may need to be calculated in hours of your life spent making it. First, painstakingly cutting out the 10 jaw-dropping skirt-gore pattern pieces, cut on a double fold of fabric and then sewing together the resulting 20 (yes, 20) gored skirt/ bodice pieces. God forbid you should line it as well.

Image courtesy of Ebay seller Vintage-Newsstand.
Interestingly enough, this pattern also has different art and coloring released the same year. The above is likely the British/ Australian release, the latter is likely the US release.

Image courtesy of eBay seller Peddecord.

How about you? Would you devote your time to such a brave undertaking?
Have you taken on a project like this before and lived to tell the tale?

Happy sewing,

Saturday, February 24, 2018

See it Sewn - Simplicity 3630 from a 1960 Catalog

Today for you, my talented sewists, I'd like to introduce a new feature that I'd like to include in our regularly scheduled blog-casting.

Today for See it Sewn, I'd like to show you how fun it can be to take a peak at a vintage pattern catalog that had a revolutionary idea: Photographs of patterns sewn!
What is this madness? At sometime in the late 1950s (this is a loose estimate, as I do not have a lot of catalogs to reference) someone finally had the brilliant idea of sewing up and photographing sewing patterns to make pattern counter catalogs look more like fashion magazines.

In today's particular instance, the models were styled flawlessly and provide a snap-shot of how these garments were meant to look. The pattern illustrations alone could often make some styles look boring or dated.

That is the case with Simplicity 3630.

Image courtesy of the Vintage Patterns Wikia.
This could look like just another early 60s coat to most pattern sellers and collectors. It's ok, sure, but not cutting edge, not wildly chic.
Or is it?

Simplicity 3630 as featured in my October 1960 Counter Catalog.
This model, sporting the same Simplicity 3630 in "Highland Grape" wool plaid, accessorized with long, leather gloves and a fur hat with her makeup done to the nines, could not be more stylish.
Note the large buttons, and the massive pockets with the plaid matched perfectly.
This is a COAT and seeing it sewn took it from drab to fab in seconds.

A few pages later in the same catalog, we see Simplicity 3642. Here is the original pattern envelope.

Image courtesy of the Vintage Patterns Wikia.
Not bad, a bit more stylish in illustration.
And here it is, sewn in a "Winter Plum" plaid similar to the coat above.

Simplicity 3642 as shown in the October 1960 Counter Catalog.
Note again her stylish hat, the semi-long gloves, her choice of belt and brooch. Notice how the upper seamed panels over her bust have been cut on the bias to give the plaid a different effect? It's sheer brilliance!

It makes me look with fresh eyes at patterns that I would normally pass right by.

How about you? Have you ever seen something sewn that made you look at a pattern in a different light?

Happy sewing!

Copies of both of these patterns can usually be found from your favorite pattern sellers on Etsy.
Below are links to searches for each of these that will show you who currently has them for sale.

Simplicity 3630 Coat

Simplicity 3642 Dress

Saturday, February 3, 2018

Found in a Bag - Yet another 1920s Dress

As many of you already know, my late Mama was a vintage dress hoarder. As an antique dealer, her specialty was vintage clothing and she was a master at restoring difficult pieces. She often hung on to many great pieces that were beyond saving -  squirreling them away to be later used in the restoration of something else. Some pieces ended up as parasol covers, beaded purse linings, or period correct doll clothes.
Others were forgotten about and tucked away in every spare corner and cupboard she could find in her home. When she unexpectedly passed away, my sister and I had to sort through hundreds of boxes. Sometimes, rather than digging through the contents of an entire box, I would follow a hunch and take a box or bag home, sight unseen. I wanted to save some of these discoveries for later.
It has felt special, opening these boxes over 4 years after her passing, savoring the feeling of discovery, and feeling close to her again in some small way.

My most recent excavation brought to light a dusty ziplock bag filled with yellowed tissue paper wrapped around something fabric-like.

Since we had so much fun with the last Found in a Bag post (this is not the first bag, but the 3rd so far!) I had to share this one with you as well.

I give you a 1920s silk evening dress in supple silk satin...