A McCardell is a thing of beauty

Oh wow. My muslin is a mess. There is lots of loose orange basting thread, the seam allowances I provided are enormous and when I slip on the bodice and tug it a little around the waist so it nips in… I see it… the way the dress is supposed to look. Despite all the ickiness of the muslin bodice, a vision of the finished dress is starting to emerge. I have to unpick the basted pleats (again) and try and figure out where I am going wrong at the shoulders… but wow.

This is a dress I am going to love. Forever and ever! Created well before the famous Diane Von Furstenburg wrap dress, McCardell’s dress  has the same undated, elegant simplicity. No wonder her designs were such a stand out when Dior was reigning supreme.

I inspect the muslin again, yes I will trim the seam allowances, give the pieces a good press and perfect “the look”. The plaid silk taffeta, carefully packed away awaits… and begs…!

Dressmaking can be a slow process with a one year old to care for. But it gives me such pleasure to create. And always with a cup of tea or coffee on hand!

1940s tea cosy pattern available at my etsy shop, VanessaLovesVintage

1940s Aloha Sweater

I have decided to do a full week of knitting patterns as I have spent the last week sorting through them and picking out designs for my etsy shop. This is one of my favourites, produced in Australia during World War II. Quite apart from the era, I also love Hawaii and the style of this sweater is gorgeous. The colour palette chosen for the advert is very retro… but so sensational! I want one!!!

The design in my pattern book is actually black and white but I found this beautiful colour rendition in a 1940s women’s magazine. Enjoy!

40s vintage “knitteds” and a little adventure

ImageThis is another 40s knitting pattern I really like… so forward and modern for the times! This one was also published in Australia during World War II. Love the flattering ribbed waists in a lot of these designs.

This morning I am packing hubbie and bub into the car and we are going shopping for bargains on a country town about an hour away… with brunch along the way. A mini adventure so to speak! If only I would find more pretty patterns….

Heeeeeeeeeeeeelloooooooooo weekend!

Mad mad mad for 40s fashion… with a cherry on top

There has been a great interest of late in 50s and 60s fashions with the airing of MAD MEN, but I must admit, I also adore some of the designs which were fashionable in the 1940s. As such todays pattern is a 1940s knitting pattern produced in Australia. Oh, two patterns, why not!  If your  ever read my blog, you’ll be aware I love both sewing and knitting (though I have been putting myself through a few courses online of late to learn couture sewing).

But back in the day, knitting was an equally important skill, trade for cheap machine made knitted garments isn’t what it is today. I generally only sell 40s and 50s designs at my etsy store (VanessaLovesVintage) because of Australian copyright laws. If you see someone selling Australian reproduction sewing or digital knitting patterns post 1955, I’d say be careful, they may knowingly or unknowingly be in breach of Aussie copyright law.

Anyhooo… here are two patterns today… shameless plug, they are both available in epattern format at my etsy store! “Cherry on top” is one of my favourites… as soon as Little Prince is a bit older I plan to get this one on the needles… well, I hope so anyway! 😉 I like the buttons on the shoulder on the second design… I think the feature at the neckline is nice too, doesn’t make it toooooo much lace and provides a bit of a focal point…. What do you think?!?

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STYLE with Patons and Baldwins and Vintage finds this weekend

Antique Knitting Gauge from Redditch, England c1920-1930

Todays post is to show off some of my fun vintage finds from this last weekend. The pattern of the day has been in my collections a while, a gorgeous sweater illustrated here in Patons and Baldwins STYLE knitting magazine…. So lovely! The vintage pink knitting needles are “new” though!

vintage crochet cotton… pretty colours!

Love these buttons… possibly bakelite?