Monday, April 27, 2009

...and speaking of 70s takes on 30s/40s fashions

Q: What vintage is this dress?

I know! I know!
It was homemade from McCall's pattern number 4405, dating from the mid 1970s, but it has all sorts of 40s detailing. I was lucky to have had the pattern for sale recently, and when I found the homemade dress I recognized it immediately.

[Gotta love those Farrah Fawcett faces on pattern envelopes of the era!]

BTW, the dress is currently for sale on eBay.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

The start of my vintage love, ca. 1973

I have been looking for vintage clothing since I was 13, in 1973. At that time, those of us looking were finding clothes from the 30s and 40s pretty often, and that shaped our thinking about vintage clothing. This obviously shaped clothing designers at that time too. I loved, studied and sewed Betsey Johnson's patterns in the Butterick catalogue of 1973. I made a number of these patterns several times. I could make them again today, that is how right they still look to me.

I was not an inexperienced seamstress at the age of 13, got pattern magazines and books, and was terribly impressed with the "old styles" being shown.

Simplicity's Let Yourself Sew influenced me for a decade. I think I tried every technique in this book.

Like approximately every girl, I got Seventeen magazine and kept being attracted to the nostalgic 30s and 40s looks shown.

Every day I wake up in love with vintage and this was the era that made me the vintage lover I am.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Marian Anderson, Easter 1939

Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Marian Anderson performs at the steps of the Lincoln Memorial on Easter Sunday, 1939.

"Seventy years ago, a concert took place on Easter at the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. At least 75,000 people attended the performance, which was heard across the country on NBC Radio. The performer was opera singer Marian Anderson.

The location for the concert was not chosen for its audience capacity. Anderson had tried to book Constitution Hall, but the Daughters of the American Revolution, which owned the hall, refused to let her perform there because she was black.

First lady Eleanor Roosevelt interceded and arranged for the alternate venue." (more from NPR Weekend Edition Sunday, April 12, 2009)

Marian Anderson was one of the leading contraltos of the 20th century. If you haven't heard her, please give a listen:

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Make a splash with great vintage this April

Please come visit my April theme Make a Splash--I've think I've got enough umbrellas for everyone!

(I think I'm obsessed with umbrellas!)