Monday, May 18, 2015

Women Drivers............

I came across this today and had a little chuckle.  Of course, after watching the Mad Men finale (::sob::), I realize that there may have been an adman's hand in this "study."  He probably worked for Topaz Pantyhose.  But still, the things they spent money on in 1970, trying to undermine women.....it's mind boggling.  And just for the record, Officer, I fully intended to go that fast!




Monday, May 4, 2015

For the Shoe Lovers............

LOVE these.  I'm reading a book right now by Anne Fogarty, and she proclaims that she considers a red shoe to be standard.  She didn't like boring shoes!  Alas, the two pairs of flats that I bought today were taupe, and tan/white.  Definitely standard!  And though I love these, I do wonder if the arch is as pronounced as the illustration shows.  If so, I would definitely not be able to wear them, cute as they are.

From 1944.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

A Bit of Trivia


I've seen so many "sanforized" garments over the course of time, but this is the first time I cam across a real explanation of what it was.  I found this in a 1944 Good Housekeeping magazine.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Paper Dolls, anyone?

I loved paper dolls when I was a kid, so imagine my glee when I came across these Tillie the Toiler (and some Etta Kett) paper dolls.  I don't have an exact date on them -- Tillie was around for quite some time, but most of the ones I have are late 30s, early 40s. 
 
Tillie and Etta were fun, because wannabe designers would submit their drawings of outfits for her, and the newspaper would print paper dolls with those outfits next to her full size cartoon in the funny pages.  I have a bunch of these, and they are just amazing.  Here's a sample:
 
 
 
However, in the interest of thinning the herds as far as stuff around here, they're listed on ebay, so if you're interested, click here.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Just Because.........Hats.

I love hats so much.  These are from 1935:
 
 

Thursday, February 19, 2015

When Safety Entered Fashion

Talk about an odd showing:  in 1954, three new developments in fashion were developed. 

Joggers everywhere applauded when "crashproof" raincoats were shown.  Now, they didn't really prevent crashes, but they "lit up like neon signs as soon as the sun went down," in helping to protect pedestrians and bicyclists who were out after dark.  Jogging really wasn't a big thing yet, but I'm sure if Forrest Gump saw it, he would've liked it.  The new product was displayed at the Aqueduct race track, where the audience got a chance to ride around in race cars, whilst models stood in various places around the track, wearing different colors of reflectorized clothing, reportedly "glowing safely in the darkness while cars whizzed by." Hopefully no alcohol was being served.

Next was "worlderized" fabric.  The "worlderizing" process stiffened the fabric, rendering it flameproof."  This was evidenced by a live model standing calmly whilst the demonstrator held a match to her Ceil Chapman nylon net dress.  Thankfully,no one went up in flames, and, though a part of her skirt melted under the heat, it didn't continue once the flame was removed.  Hmmm......... I'm sure this was a precursor to fire retardant kid's jammies.  It supposedly made the fabric water repellant and crush resistant, and it had shrinkage control too.  Pretty sure they figured they had the perfect product there, though melting nylon doesn't have much appeal to me, and I bet it smelt awful.

The third development wasn't a safety feature, but sweater girls were probably quite interested.  The "Tycora" process was unveiled, which supposedly made the yarn pill-proof and helped it keep its shape.  This meant that sweaters would keep their shape and maintain their original smooth texture, even after multiple washings. 

So what's not to love, when you go to a display and get racecars melting dresses, and perfect sweaters?  Who says fashion isn't science?


Sunday, January 11, 2015

Let Me Give You a Hand on Gloves

Let's talk about gloves.  This is adapted from "How to Sew" by Mary Lynch  and Dorothy Sara, copyright 1960.

Glove sizes are measured in inches.  The measurement is taken around the palm of the hand, at the base of the fingers.  If your hand measures 6 1/2 inches, you wear a 6 1/2 glove.  Many women like to buy gloves slightly large.  (I have man hands and long fingers, and wear a 7 1/2.)

String gloves were popular in wool, cotton, nylon or rayon.  Yellow, beige, or any natural color was worn with sports or riding clothes. Alternates for sports clothes are woolen gloves or mittens.  "They are especially smart in black for a woman and in bright colors for teenagers."  Double woven fabric, made from cotton is very thick and smooth and can barely be distinguished from suede leather.  It can be washed, so it is more practical.

Other materials:

  • Chamois can mean either natural creamy yellow color, or the actual chamois leather.  
  • Kid, glace kid, and glace are thin, smooth surfaced leather gloves.  Fine kid has a gloss but is not usually so rich and luxurious looking.
  • Pigskin is exactly what it says.  Pigskin gloves are worn with sports, tailored and casual clothes.
  • Ostrich, reindeer, and capeskin are also used for everyday wear.
  • Suede and mocha are soft, velvety leather. 
  •  Doeskin is similar to suede and mocha, but of lesser quality. Some doeskin gloves can be washed, but white doeskin will yellow after a few washings.  Most leathers tend to stiffen with washing.
  • Black sueded is lovely, but prone to "cracking" (rubbing off on your clothes).


For petite women, "shorties" (gloves that come just above the wrist) are the perfect length, in slip on, or one button style.  Wear them to match your outfit, or as the only contrasting accessory - don't match gloves to purse to hat.


"If You Are a Tall One": "your gloves- on the street -- fabric or leather gloves in slip-on or gauntlet (wide flared top) style are best for you.  If you like sports clothes, tweed suits, or loose swinging topcoats, you may wear your gloves in a half size larger than your wee bit sister.  If you like your gloves, bags and other accessories a bit large, why not wear them that way?  This will give you a casual and comfortable air." Correctly shown in the illustrations on the left.  If you are tall, you should apparently not go gloveless, as the "wrong" illustrations on the right show no gloves.

Perhaps flu season would go better for us if we went back to wearing gloves?  I'd be ok with this, as I love gloves.  All in favor, raise your (properly gloved) hand.