Monday, February 25, 2013

Sew for Victory - Free Knitting Patterns

If only I could knit. I'll admit, knitting is a complete mystery to me. I envy those you who have this marvelous talent. Knitting is a skill I would like to learn but in all likelihood never will. Mainly because I already have so many interests and unfinished sewing projects. I'm fearful of adding too many things to pile of UFOs!

Anyway, I came a cross this awesome resource they other day and thought it would be of interest to some. The Victorian and Albert Museum has several free knitting patterns available online. Any of these knitting projects would be perfect for the Sew for Victory Challenge.

Here are a few of my favorites.

'Neat and Feminine' - Source V&A
Matching cap and gloves.

'Fair Isle Cap and Gloves' - Source V&A
Anyone want to knit this one for me? lol

Your Victory Jumper - Source V&A

Friday, February 22, 2013

Great Hair Friday - It's a hat today

I had what I thought was an awesome photo for today's Great Hair Friday. ... Then I saw this on Facebook. Ok, so it's not what I would call great. It's just plain funny, and maybe a little creepy. You decide!

It sort of looks like the squirrel has been living in her hair! Also, I think that's a cigarette holder in her hand but I'm not sure.

Posted on Facebook by HistoricalSewing
 It reminds me of this bonnet at the MET.

MET - Accession Number 2009.300.1451

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

10 Vintage Items Worth the Splurge

I learned through Jessica of Chronically Vintage, that Joanna from Dividing Vintage Moments is hosting a giveaway with an interesting twist. She is asking those who want to enter what 10 vintage items they think are worth spending a little extra money on.

Here are my top 10 vintage splurge ideas.

1 - A good vintage coat. Many vintage styles are so classic, they never go out of style.
2 - Cardigan sweater with cute details. It will be something you can wear with pants or a skirt. Versatility is great.
3 - Real pearls!
4 - A good pair of vintage or vintage style shoes.

My 1940s pumps from Etsy
5 - Well fitted two piece suit or dress. More versatility - wear them together or as separates.
6 - A couple pairs of colorful vintage gloves with nice details. These are a fun accessory and can add a splash of color to any outfit.

1950s suit by Swansdown
1940s suit purchased from Morning Glorious Vintage
7 - Vintage patterns! If you can sew you can use the same pattern(s) to make a variety of dresses, skirts, etc to add to your wardrobe. They are also a good investment and be resold easily.

8 - Classes or workshops. Ok, I know those don't exactly fit this list. But for someone who doesn't often have the money to buy the real thing, acquiring the skills and knowledge to make vintage or historical style clothing is the next best thing. I love learning how things are made and I enjoy creating. My 18th century shoe workshop was NOT cheap by any means. But if I make more than one pair of shoes I will have made my money back and then some. I spend almost every weekend of the summer at a different living history event so being correctly dressed, from head to toe, is very important to me.

Partially finished pair of 18th century shoes. I started this over a year ago.
9 - Good quality fabrics and notions for creating a vintage or historic look. Things like buttons and buckle might not seem like much of a splurge to some but I think the little things matter. A good stash of these vintage extras will come in handy for a number of projects.

100% silk fabric and antique buckles used to create my 1920s evening dress
10 - I enjoy collecting vintage. So for me, spending a little extra on a few special items to enhance my collection is worth it. If you have been following me on Facebook, you will know my most recent splurges include the President Eisenhower inaugural ball dress I posted about here and a World War II U.S. Navy WAVE uniform. The WAVE uniform was certainly a splurge but the opportunity to own something like that comes up so rarely I couldn't pass it up.

World War II U.S. Navy WAVE uniform
Dress worn to President Eisenhower's inaugural ball

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day!

Happy Valentine's Day everyone! Here are a couple vintage Valentine's Day cards for you to enjoy. I've posted some of these on Facebook but here they are all together.

These date from the 1940s, although the last one may be a bit earlier.

And one for the WAVEs!

 You can't go wrong with Betty Boop!

Monday, February 11, 2013

And the winner is ....

Thank you to everyone who participated in Sew Grateful Week. I really enjoyed reading everyone posts and even discovered some great new blogs! Hooray! Also thank you for all the great giveaways. I entered a bunch, keeping my fingers crossed. :)

Thank you to all who entered my giveaway. I really enjoyed reading your comments. There were a few last minute entries but I made sure they were included. I counted up the comments and put all the names in a hat. And the winner of my Sew Grateful Giveaway is ...

Sandi! Congratulations! Send me an email with your mailing address and I will ship the fabric and pattern ASAP! Sandi picked the See & Sew skirt wrap around skirt pattern. I love her idea for the pink fabric. 
" ... Like Maryall I would follow your suggestion and use the fabric with the See and Sew pattern. I think I have some white flannel-backed satin that would do well as a winter slip underneath, maybe with a lace edging left over from my mother's kitchen curtains and a few tiny pink or red ribbon bows to peek out at the bottom in keeping with the Valentine's Day idea."  

Whatever you choose to make I hope you will share a picture or two!

That's all for today!

Friday, February 8, 2013

Sew Grateful Finished Project

Hello all.  I've been a bit behind on posting for Sew Grateful week. I forgot all about it until Monday when I was catching up on my blog reading. I managed to pull together a giveaway, share a free pattern, and write a sew grateful post all this week! Phew! That's a lot of blogging for me.

My current sewing project, Rosie the Riveter overalls, is far from finished. And sadly I don't have any pictures to share. Hopefully I'll have it finish for the Sew For Victory! A 40s Sewalong. I had to do some thinking about what finished project I wanted to share today and decided to go with a dress I finished last summer.

Anyone remember this project?

This pretty little shirtwaist dress was made using a pattern I purchased from Barbara of FloradoraPresents. The pattern was DuBarry 2413B, a tailored shirtwaist dress from the early 1940s. I really adore this pattern. It has two sleeve options, long or short, and the option of a pleated style or flared skirt cut on the bias. It also has cute little triangular shaped pockets on bodice! I think heart shaped pockets would be cute too. :)

FloradoraPresents on Etsy
I wore the dress for the scenic train ride Cori and I took last summer. You can read more about it in my post here.

The dress is made from a blue linen blend that came from the stash. I didn't use the vintage buttons shown in the first picture. I ended up buying some modern plastic buttons so I won't have to take the vintage ones off their original paper card.

It was a great day for photos! Nice and sunny if I remember right and not too hot either!

This one is a bit blurry but I still like it. Here I am "reading the paper" at the train station. Next time Cori and I do something like this I'm going to bring some vintage magazines.

All aboard!!
This is one of my favorite photos from day that.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Sew Grateful Sewing Resources - Free Pattern

Greetings everyone! As part of the Sew Grateful Week, hosted by Debi at My Happy Sewing Place, I would like to provide you with a free sewing pattern that I found online.

Today's pattern is for drafting your own pair of 1920s knickers. Proper clothing for any historical time period beings with the proper undergarments. I found this pattern here through Shay of Little Grey Bungalow. If you make a pair of knickers using this pattern please let me know! I would love to see what you create. Be sure to look through her whole Flick album for some great treasures!

Pattern Source
Check back at My Happy Sewing Place for additional free patterns, tutorials, and more! Debi will be posting highlights and wrap-up posts from the Sew Grateful Week.

I have also updated my How Tos and More page. Be sure to take a look!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

My Sew Grateful Post

As one of my first posts last year I took part in Debi's Sew Grateful Week. How quickly last year went by! So much has happened. I'm gaining new followers and I've been slowly working to expand my blog. I created a Facebook page back in October and finally broke down and created a page on Pinterest as well. My goal is to eventually open a shop on Etsy were I can offer some of my creations as well vintage and antique items. I don't want to start selling until I can figure out a few things. Mainly, how to deal with shipping costs and taxes. You see, if I open a shop it would be more of a hobby rather than a full time business. I can't quit my day job just yet! ;) Do any of you have Etsy shops or other online stores? If you can offer any advice I would be greatly appreciate it.

I still consider myself to be be very new to the blogging world but I'm enjoying it immensely. I follow a number of blogs and Facebook pages and everyday see something new and pretty. I look forward to coming home at the end of the day and working on a particular project. Or brainstorming for the next! I'm very grateful for my new friends in the online sewing/vintage community. It truly is a wonderful way to connect with new people and share ideas, inspiration, sewing tips, and much more! I love seeing what other people are working on. I never realized just how popular vintage lifestyles were outside the U.S. In particular places like Australia, New Zealand, and the UK. There are a number of lovely ladies out there that find every opportunity to get dressed up! Lots of great inspirational pictures for those of us who want to wear more vintage.

This year begins a new page in my life in a couple ways. This spring I will be turning 30, which feels like a milestone for me. I've come to terms with the fact that I will no longer be in my 20s. (Thinking about it still brings on a slight panic attack.) As many of you know I got engaged in January and with that will come many more changes. And I'm looking forward to them. :) I've been thinking more as of late just what kind of lifestyle I want to have. Do I wish I could time travel to a particular decade? Well, yes of course. But not to live there, I just want to visit and maybe do some shopping. ;) Do I want to dress in vintage everyday? No, but I do want to work more of it into my lifestyle. Part of my reason for starting a blog was because I needed some change in my life. Reaching out to the online sewing/vintage community has helped me in a big way.

Celebrating my birthday last year with two of my favorite girls, Monica and Jill.
I'm grateful to my friends and family for supporting my many interests, even if they are mostly history and sewing related. I'm grateful that my friends from college and I have remained so close. We try and get together at least once every year. I'm grateful for fun little things like birthday cards, cups of tea, a warm wood stove and bright color socks.

College roommates at Lauren's wedding last spring.
At our annual college roommate reunion last fall. Monica organized a game night. Go blue team!
At our annual college roommate reunion. Our dorm was called Union. Photo by Dan Gardner.
And last but not least, I'm grateful I have Cori to share this all with. He not only tolerates my sewing and vintage collecting habits, he encourages them too! Cori has a growing collection of vintage clothing as well, mainly military uniforms. When we finally buy a house together we're going to need a lot of closet space!

Hosting My First Giveaway!

As part of Sew Grateful Week I'm hosting my very first giveaway! (I know I'm a day late.) I have really enjoyed the variety of giveaways hosted by other bloggers. I've entered a bunch my self but have never won. Today's post is a way for me to show my appreciation to you, my dear readers.

I've collected a nice little stash of vintage and not so vintage sewing patterns but have come to the conclusion that I'll never get around to using all of them. The same goes for some of the fabrics in my stash.

My giveaway will include one of the following patterns and 2 yards of lovely light pink cotton. Sorry for the dark photos, it's much prettier in person. :) The fabric is about 62 inches wide, light weight, and has a little white floral pattern. I think this would be perfect for a Valentine's Day outfit.

Fabric is a little more pink in color than this picture shows.

The winner may pick one of the following patterns. Up first is Quick Butterick Fast & Easy skirt pattern # 6036.

Next, another Butterick skirt pattern. Sew & Sew # 6005. Size medium. This is a super easy wrap-around style skirt that will fit a variety of sizes. I have used this pattern once before and it went together nicely. There should be enough pink fabric to make this skirt.

Next, we have a 1970s Vogue pattern. Very Easy Very Vogue 8131. Size 10, 32 1/2 bust, 34 1/2 hip. This pattern has two sleeve and two skirt length options.

The last pattern, and my favorite of the bunch, is Vogue 7369. Size 8, 31 1/2 bust, 33 1/2 hip. I have two copies of this pattern and I'm willing to part with one of them. This is a one piece dress with three different sleeve options.

So, which pattern would you pick? Do you like the fabric? This giveaway is open to everyone and will end February 10th. I will announce the winner on Monday, February 11th.

To enter:
- Be a follower of this blog. Leave me a comment saying what you would do with the fabric and which pattern you like best. Be sure I have a way to contact you in case you win!

For additional entries:
- Share this post on your blog, Facebook page, etc. and leave me a comment each time telling me you've done so.
- "Like" me on Facebook and leave me a comment here to let me know.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Great Hair Fridays - February 1941

Beautiful vintage up dos just in time for Valentine's Day! Today's Great Hair Fridays post is brought to you by a February 1941 issue of the Modern Beauty Shop. Enjoy!

Modern Beauty Shop - February 1941
Modern Beauty Shop - February 1941

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