Thursday, July 24, 2014

Vintage Ads - Cleaning with Art Deco Style

Wonderful Bon Ami! I use it myself, although it no longer comes in the very cool Art Deco container displayed in this 1934 advertisement. I  marvel at how well dressed the homemaker is in this ad, just to clean the tub. A little fancier than what I wear when I clean the bathroom - lol!

Cheap! Cheap!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Home Sewing Tips from the 1920s - The Rippling Hemline

In this tip for home sewers in the 1920s, Ruth Wyeth Spears tackles the subject of "rippling hemlines". She refers to the "new figured materials", by which I do believe she means what we would call a print fabric (rather than a solid color fabric). Along with suggestions of various methods, Ruth illustrates how to best hem these curved edges.

Ruth always provides such fine illustrations to accompany the explanation.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Vintage Advertisements - 1950s Sunburn Cream

Have you managed to keep cool and out of the sun this summer? Sunburn or no, this gal has fabulous "pin-up girl" looks. I just hope that "Gypsy Cream" really worked to provide sunburn relief. ;)

Monday, July 21, 2014

Miss Lillian's Postcards: Vintage Tweets from the 1900s - A Christmas Postcard

Postcard 007

Sender: Stella
Addressee: Miss Lillian Maguire, 3004 Vine Grove Av, City
Postmark: St Louis, MO
Date: December 25, 1906
Image: Painting of two boats
Message: [This is a "picture post" with no message, but the sender is Stella, who signs on the front of the postcard "Stella 12/25/06"]

Here is a "Christmas in July" post! :) And it is from someone new to us, "Stella". A friend? Someone in her family? I am guessing a friend, based on no facts whatsoever. ;)

This painting of boats in a harbor (and a dark painting at that) seems rather an odd choice for a Christmas image. The Christmas greeting partly obscures the artist's signature, so I've no idea who the artist is.

Note how the postcard is stamped at 1 AM on December 25! Perhaps Stella dropped it off at the post office on her way to midnight Christmas services. The post office had to have someone there working - how else could it be stamped with that time and date? I wonder when it was delivered. Do you think it was delivered on Christmas Day? I don't know if workers got regular holidays in 1906 like they do now. It is also possible that the meter was set for the first hour of Christmas and was simply stamped earlier.

Also note her use of the word "City" instead of writing out St Louis, MO. This was a common way to indicate the address remained within the city limits where the postcard (or letter) was posted. This remained a common thing to do even into the 1960s and 1970s. I can remember my mother sending and receiving mail with "City" instead of "Seattle" after the street address.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Home Sewing Tips from the 1920s - When Your Figure Is Not Ideal For Beltless Frocks

Back in the 1920s, women with curves were challenged by the slim styles of the day. Nice to know, yes? In this tip, Ruth Wyeth Spears tackles this topic, illustrating the problems and offering one possible solution.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

1920s Foundation Garments - Coat Dress Foundation Slip

What makes a coat-dress foundation slip different from the other foundation slips (plain and tunic-dress) is the creation of sections of the slip using the dress material that can be viewed purposefully or inadvertently. The coat-dress foundation slip (illustrated below) is created for use with a coat dress that opens at the side front. By using dress fabric in a band at the bottom and up the side opening, it ensures that the skirt, when swinging open, does not show a contrasting material. Likewise, a vestee of the dress material is attached at the neckline so that it reveals the same fabric at the neckline.

When sewing a coat-dress foundation slip, start with the plain foundation slip (the small figure on the right). Outline the sections for the dress material on the plain slip pattern and then trace to other paper to create a pattern. The lower band replaces the slip lower section so seam allowances need to be added. But the vestee forms an additional layer on the foundation slip, attaching with snaps.

The coat-dress foundation slip can have a round neckline, a square neckline, even a camisole neckline, as needed. As always, adjust the slip to fit the requirements of the coat-dress.

Friday, July 18, 2014

1930s Techniques for Keeping Chic in the Heat

The essence of summer chic and charm (let alone luxurious langour), is crispness, coolness, and feminine freshness. How's that alliteration for you? ;)

To keep cool, look cool, and feel cool,  wear fresh organdie dresses and cool, scented lingerie. This (and all the usual advice, and the image above) comes from a 1934 Pictorial Review article on keeping cool and feminine in the heat of summer. The usual advice includes: keep makeup light, use a light face cream, take care of your eyes (rest, use sunglasses, eye cream), massage the feet.

I found especially interesting two "new gadgets" mentioned, that made taking showers possible that did not muss up your carefully waved hair:
  • A spray attachment  that fits around your shoulders  and lets your head rise above the spray
  • An oiled silk shower hood that fits over your head without mussing your hair; it's transparent so you can see the spray through the silk, and eliminates the "agony of trying to fit a rubber cap over your carefully done tresses".
Can you visualize these? There were no images in the magazine article. I laugh when I think of each one. A spray attachment on your shoulders? :D The silk shower hood sounded harmless until it mentions seeing through the transparent hood. Are they saying it covers the face?? I understand now why these products did not survive the test of time. LOL!

I do love that illustration - so dreamy! :)