Friday, 8 November 2019

Dressing in 1940s style

 War time fashion, tutorials on inserting zips , a SewOverIt 1940's tea dress to sew and much much more!

It is as important today as it was in the 1940's to adopt a "Make do and mend" attitude, and I hope to show you that this will make you  re-think your sewing habits. I know it has done for me.

Enjoy! 


The second world war started in 1939 and didn't end until 1945. During this time rationing of almost everything was in place and continued even after the war had ended until supplies started to become available again.
It was in 1941 that the government introduced rationing which greatly influenced clothing and how it was worn. Strict guidelines governed how many buttons were allowable and how many seams were acceptable and so on.




Don't think for one minute that fashion was dull though, far from it. The designs were high quality and the famous CC41 utility label was also  a sign of  excellent value for money and  you knew it was made to last. The CC41 designs were devised by a panel of top designers including Hardy Amies and Norman Hartnell no less.

A combination of paying for your clothes with money and coupons meant that the class divide had no impact on what you wore - everyone was entitled to exactly the same.

These are the exact details of what a utility dress should consist of;-

"Examples of details of restriction orders when making Utility dress: it could have no more than two pockets, five buttons, six seams in the skirt, two inverted or box pleats or four knife pleats, and one hundred and sixty inches (four metres) of stitching. No superfluous decoration was allowed. It should be simple, practical, agreeable-looking, inexpensive and made of good material"





It should also be noted that one quarter of the population, women included ,was now in uniform of some sort and with women being ordered to maintain glamour at all times, these uniforms were also beautifully tailored. The most coveted being the Wren's uniform - worn with red lipstick and curled hair of course.
Coty produced lipstick and face powder which was not rationed, as well as producing such things as foot powder for use by the military.

It should be noted that selling these utility garments were a great source of income to the government.


This booklet was produced in the early 40s as supplies were becoming more and more scarce. The wool and cotton fabric, and dark coloured dyes  were needed by the military for uniforms and for blackout curtains .
 We were not receiving imports of cotton and silk because of the high cost of shipping  goods from abroad - China for one, and by that I mean the cost in lives as well as in monetary terms.

To read the rest of the post you need to click underneath on the message below .... ....

Thursday, 7 November 2019

Stitching back in time to the 1940s , dresses and trenchcoats

The middle to late 1940s fashion: Dresses and Trench Coats 



A Jaycotts blog post.





It wasn't until 10:30 AM on 12 February 1947 that a relatively unheard of Christian Dior unveiled his "New Look"
Taking inspiration from flower petals he celebrated femininity with defined narrow waists and full flowing skirts. It was a defiance towards the rationing which had restricted fashion for several years.

 Before this monumental event though , and even when WW2 had ended,  we were still gripped by austerity and it was getting worse. We were encouraged to take two very worn dresses and coats for example and somehow make the best bits of each into one wearable garment. Shoe leather had run out and women's shoes were made with wooden soles which were very much hated. Everything was becoming more and more difficult and it seemed never ending, so the advent of a new fashion house really brought excitement to life.

If you are after a 1940s look then many of today's styles are very similar. Go for a low heel, preferably a chunky heel, a brogue or a wedge sandal and they will be fine.

One item which did prove popular was the Siren Suit, Sir Winston Churchill loved his and had one made from pin-stripe suiting (of course)


But the rest of us loved them too, they were designed to wear over normal clothes, or night clothes when the air raid siren went off. Air raid shelters were dirty, cold and smelly and these garments were very much necessary.

Today we still wear a type of this garment in the form of jumpsuits. Take a look at the pattern range available from Jaycotts Jumpsuit pattern




I have a blog post too An easy Simplicity Jumpsuit so do take a look at the tutorial. Did you see the Sewing Bee 2019 As one of the challenges was to sew a jumpsuit and they all looked fabulous.

Factories were still being run by women - it took a long while before the men came home and women were forced out of work.  Supplies were still not reaching us so even after WW2 had ended we were still very much rationed - we were short of everything. Even those tiny ends of thread which we cut off and throw away were kept and treasured.


Keep on reading..........

How to sew Simplicity 1940's Style Vintage Trousers


On last month's MinervaCrafts Blogger Network I posted the blouse made from the same pattern, this month I completed the outfit with this lovely pair of trousers.
The trousers are wide leg and as fashionable now as they were in the 1940's.
 Never made trousers before? This Simplicity pattern is very flattering and simple to follow so you won't have any problems.
My post is all about fitting them to suit you so please click on this link and view my post on MinervaCrafts website.Simplicity vintage style trousers on Minerva Crafts Blogger Network



Do let me know what you think about this outfit and please contact me if you have any questions

Angela


Wednesday, 6 November 2019

how to make a 1940's style tea dress


Sewing a 1940s dress



This is a post I wrote some time ago, but I think it is worth re visiting.
Vintage fashion is very much "in" at the moment and when I was looking through my sewing room I found this Folkwear pattern for a 1940's dress. I also found some viscose floral print which hangs nicely.



For this dress I researched traditional methods and used them as for as possible. This is not a quick make and is for experienced sewers.





I have wanted to sew a dress in 1940's style for ages, I bought the vintage style fabric  and pattern ages ago but never got around to sewing it.
I am pleased to say that this pattern is now for sale in the UK and you can purchase it from MinervaCrafts. Glamour girl dress pattern
I'm suggesting that you use a heavy woven dress fabric which hangs well, this floral viscose Challis would be perfect Floral print viscose challis



When sewing vintage the first step is to take your measurements and choose the pattern size which  corresponds most closely. Do not just use your usual dress size as patterns do usually vary from these. This is true for any pattern, but more so for vintage as women were much smaller back in the 1940's.
Cut the pattern pieces out and lay them on the fabric on the correct grain, as shown on the pattern piece.
Cut out the material, leaving larger than normal seam allowances in true vintage style. Vintage garments were made to last a lifetime and so extra fabric was always left in the seam allowances to enable the garment to be let out if necessary and to be honest it is good practise to do it now.
The next step is to transfer all pattern markings to the fabric using your prefered method. Keeping with tradition for this garment I am using tailors tacks and thread markings.


How I sewed My 1940's Blouse



Sometimes the perfect pattern comes your way purely by chance and this Blouse pattern by Simplicity hits the mark. It has everything! The 1940's design looks as great today as it did then and makes a wonderful change from loose tops and T-shirts.
As a bonus it is easy to sew too with no complicated seams or shaping. The all-in-one collar is easy to sew too making it a delight to sew, even for beginners.




Want to find out how I made it and to see what fabric choices there are? Click on this link   My blouse on the Minerva Crafts Blogger Network    and go to the MinervaCrafts website, you won't be disappointed.
I didn't follow the government restrictions though because I used more than the approved five buttons.
Let me know if you made it too, and what fabric you chose

Angela x



#vintage #1940's #blouse #cottonlawn #sewing #simplicity


Tuesday, 5 November 2019

My fabulously Fishy Frock!

My Fabulous Fishy Frock

A MCBN post




I fell in love with this beautiful fabric as soon as I saw it. The more I look at it the more detail I can see. The fabric design is totally made from fish shapes, and they have incredible expressions on their faces. There is a close up of this amazing fabric and details of how to purchase it on the link below .

I was intending to make a shirt but the fabric was screaming full- skirt dress at me. I looked through all of my patterns and couldn't find one I liked. So I ordered some new ones.

When my new dress patterns arrived I kept looking at them and still couldn't find a way of maximising the design by having as few seams as possible. The new patterns all had too many seams and even careful pattern matching wasn't what I wanted. I didn't want to have a centre front seam or a two part sleeve as one of my new patterns has for example.................

Read the rest of the post to see what happened next!

Here is the link My fabulous Fishy Frock


Enjoy! 
Angela



Monday, 4 November 2019

Cotton Gauze Summer dress

Cotton gauze summer dress 







This beautiful summer dress is made from a Double Cotton Gauze. If you have never sewn with it before then you really should try it. It is soft, lightweight and perfect for warm days . It is made from two very fine layers of pure cotton which are basted together every half inch or so in a grid pattern These stitches cannot be seen.
You cannot tell from the photographs but the leaves on the design are a shiny silver on blue. The overall effect of this beautiful fabric is one of elegance
I like this dress pattern very much. It is actually a wrap dress but there is the option of having it button through or with a tie belt.

The rest of this post and fabric and pattern details are on The Minerva Crafts Blogger Network on this link Cotton gauze summer dress 

I hope that you enjoy reading this post and that you decide to use this incredible fabric yourself
Angela

#Sewangelicthreads