Sunday, June 27, 2010

8 Questions

Sassy Lassy wants me to answer these eight questions.  At least they are not the eight she answered on HER blog.

1) What outfit from a movie would you love to re-create?

Not a movie, but Mimi's Wedding Dress from the Drew Carey Show.

2) Tell us about your sewing spot/room. What is your favorite thing about it?

I  don't have a current sewing spot.  I haven't sewed much in the past 15 years.

3) Where did you learn to sew? Who taught you?

At home.  My mother. 

4) If you could have dinner with one person from the past, who would it be?

My Aunt Bobbie Jean.  She died too young and I didn't get to know her.

5) What/Who inspires you?

Reading Old House Journal, Victorian Homes, Old House Interiors.

6) What will always make you laugh?

Stupid cat tricks.

7) What is your favorite flavor of ice cream?

Butter Pecan

8) What is something you would like us to know about you that you have never shared on your blog?

I have power tools and know how to use them.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Not A Fashion Era to Relive

fFeast your eyes on this!

OK.  Fess up!  How many of you have made and/or worn something like this?  When posting this today on Etsy all I could think about was this:

Or this:
These illustrations are from Barbie Doll Fashions I and II by Sarah Sink Eames and are from 1969 and 1971 respectively.

I did, however, make a baby blue rayon tailored jumpsuit with buttons down the front and on the cuffs in the early 1980's.  I must really have had a death wish, because I had to completely undress every time I went to the bathroom.  I looked great, though, I must admit!

I'll leave you with another horror.

And B*rbie's complement.

Then there's this.  M*ttel was in love with yellow and orange for a while in the early 1970's.  And giant plaids.

The above two pictures from Book II cited above.

Yes, even B*rbie committed fashion faux pas in the '70's.
(I hope the Matt*l police do not get after me for not using the little R symbol.)

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Sewing Eye Candy

Isn't that just the cutest label you have seen?  This Tatrim sew-on trim, a timesaver for those who didn't have time to crochet or tat their own edgings.  It must have seemed like a gift from Heaven for overworked mothers.

Here is another beauty.  Just look at those colors!  Both on the label and the trim.  Yummy yellow and lavendar folded bias.  Someone generously changed  the amount listing when they used a yard.

This seems like a good place for a shout-out to  Here is a Bias Tape and Notions Reference Chart. listing manufacturers and products.  What a great resource!  The only thing I would add is a time-line.  If you look at the top corner of the page you will find many more articles about vintage trim.  You could browse this site all day.  I will be featuring more trims in the future.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Followup to Turkeys and Whales

I want to give a plug to Wikimedia Commons, the place I found the booklet on Warren Featherbone Company.  Here is the Category: Corsets.  You will find links to lots of information about different styles of corsets, manufacturers, ads, etc.  Follow the links to Books about corsets and see catalogs and booklets.  Just ignore all the bondage pictures at the bottom (unless that's your thing) and enjoy learning about making and wearing Victorian and Edwardian corsets.  They really do make your vintage clothing look better and even make you walk differently while wearing them.  I always check movies and tv shows that purport to be in a certain time period to see if they are wearing the correct undergarments.  They are getting better--no more pointy bras like in the 1950's!  There is a good scene of a woman getting dressed in 1953's House of Wax with Vincent Price.

Of Turkeys and Whales

I found  some more collar supporters like the ones I wrote about in this post

This one is from 1914 when collars were large and stood up in the back.  Following are two sizes of thread-wrapped wire from the Edwardian period.

Michigan Maid was another product of the Warren Featherbone Company.  I have featured other products from this wonderful company and have lots more, so lets look at them a little closer.  The founder, E K Warren, was Michigan-born, as was a former blog feature Jeanne Miller.  Michigan State University has a nice write up here of the Warren Featherbone Company.  Here is an article that appeared in Michigan History Magazine.  Lots of pictures of products and ads.  You will notice a product, Girdelin, for making waistbands for skirts.  I have a roll of this in brown.  It's 3-1/2 inches wide and has a bone every 4 inches.

The Warren Featherbone Company has morphed into the Warren Featherbone Foundation.  Read about it here.  There are lots of patents for this company, which you can find by going to Google Patents and typing in relevant words.  Here is a collar support somewhat like the Gladstone.  They may have crossed over the line with this one.  Here is the one for Girdelin.
A link for a wonderful 1888 informational booklet that shows the process used to make featherbone.

Here is a cloth-covered stay of either bone, celluloid, or something else.  I couldn't find anything about Invisibone on Google except some World of Warcraft stuff. ??  It certainly looks like this Warren Featherbone patent, and the illustration is in the style of their company.  There was a Warren Featherbone company here in Grand Rapids which morphed into the H H Cutler Company, a children's clothing manufacturer, which has since been bought out and moved away.  Interestingly, one of the patentees of a Warren product was Henry H Cutler.  I could not substantiate that this was the same Cutler.

And finally, something for the men.

I couldn't find anything about this company, either.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Tapes, Ribbons, and Ties

Continuing on the theme of underpinnings, here is a selection of corset ties and tapes--replacements for the back cords.

These actually already have the tips.

You would have to put tips on these, yourself.

Next up are replacement ties and straps for lingerie.

Isn't that last one pretty?

I Lied

I said I was done posting about La Jeanne Lingerie Guards but I ran across two more I had collected and stored in a different place.  These are black and pink!  I have all the colors--my life is now complete.

And look what else I found that I thought I was done posting about?

Thursday, June 10, 2010

A Tale of Betty and Catherine

I found this wonderful scrapbook recently here in Grand Rapids at an estate sale.  When I got home I discovered that inside were some mementos and a picture.  More on that later.
The illustrations were signed "Betty Betz", so, being me, I looked her up on Google.  It seems she was a socialite illustrator and writer of teenage advice books and a cartoonist.  She had the first advice column for teenagers.  She also was one of the first female celebrities to have a tv show.  She designed clothes for teens.  She had a pretty remarkable career.  I found her obituary in the Palm Beach Post and the Palm Beach Daily News.  She died at age 90 on 17 April 2010 in Bermuda.

There are a lot of products with her illustrations on them, and this woman features some of them in her museum and website.

Now, back to the former owner of the scrapbook.  Here is her picture:

Her name is Catherine Terze and she received this book as a gift from her aunt and uncle in 1956.  She graduated from St Mary High School in Jackson, Michigan in 1961.  When I Googled her name I found that she may still be alive and living in Jackson, Michigan.
So it looks like her book made it's way to Grand Rapids via a relative or some one who bought it at an estate sale.I recently sold the scrapbook in my Etsy store, but kept the graduation announcement and picture.  Catherine, if you're out there, let me know if you want your picture back!