TRUE VINTAGE CUSTOM-TAILORED FOR THE MAN IN HER LIFE

IMG_0961 IMG_0962 IMG_0972Yes, you can also make your husband’s, son’s, father’s, boss’s (lets not get carried away) next necktie, etc., etc, etc, . . . . . .

This red shirt was custom-made, but by a western-wear retailer out West, sometime in the ’40’s, ’50’s or maybe the early ’60’s.  Bespoke attire was a common luxury, even here in the U.S.  Of course, it’s been a tradition and beautifully done in Europe for decades (centuries?)

I’ve recently seen some ads for what looks like business and formal clothing that can be ordered custom-made, with one fitting or at-a-distance alterations near the end of the process.  An improvement on ready-to-wear, but not like having it constructed from the first detail by a tailor having that in-person relationship with you and your body, giving you a perfect fit, exact style preference and real-time preview.

And what a nice luxury it was to have that done for you, or to have the leisure time to do it yourself . . . . . . . . . ..

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

McCALL’S NEEDLEWORK MAGAZINE FEATURE FROM 1956 – MAKE YOUR OWN HATS

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Since, at that time, a hat was a must-add to your outfit almost every day, being able to make your own saved women a lot of money.  At the beginning of every season, women would hustle to up-date their accessories.  Of course, a new hat from a milliner or a dress shop would be the first choice, but those could be pricey, even then.  And, like shoes, a variety of different hats was the best thing!

These DIY styles are so cute.  Like the dresses and sweaters I’ve shown from these vintages magazines, they range from casual to very dressy and can be surprising in how professional they look.

Up through the Fifties, at least, being able to construct and maintain the family’s clothing was an essential part of most housewives’ duties, along with cooking and cleaning. Although I’m told it could be fun, it was not a hobby . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

McCALL’S NEEDLEWORK SPRING CARDIGANS FROM 1961

IMG_1086IMG_1087IMG_1088IMG_1089     Dig the hairstyles, too.  Now that Christmas and New Year’s celebrations were over, women in 1961 turned their attention to Spring and travel styles, as well as Prom & Easter.

With the crazy weather, we’re also thinking of flowers and sunny colors.  Although our grandmothers and great-grandmothers thought about new needlework projects  in their spare time, it’s still FASHION, and we continue to think about it now, but in different ways (what’s on my favorite Internet site?).

in 1961, the subscribers to McCall’s Needlework and Crafts magazine looked forward to these styles.

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

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TIME TO GET SERIOUS ABOUT THOSE WINTER SWEATERS – MORE MID-CENTURY NEEDLEWORK PATTERNS FROM MCCALLS

IMG_1024 IMG_1020“My gosh – look at the time!   It’s coming up Thanksgiving (in the U.S.) and I must think about winter sweaters – many of them may be Christmas gifts.”   Our grandmothers were likely saying things like this to themselves right about now, if they hadn’t been knitting since last July!

Such cute and sophisticated handmade beauties – no comparison to what’s in the stores (especially now).  Even if your family didn’t take an annual ski-trip to Vail, Colorado or the Swiss Alps, sweaters like these were popular wardrobe items.

If you love old movies and sit-coms, like I do, you’ll see plenty of them along with “stretch pants” and stirrup pants for everyday as well as being ski-wear.  If you can do this kind of needlework, Bravo!   I just have to keep my antennae alert for the real thing . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

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HALLOWEEN’S IN THE BAG – TIME FOR ALL 1950’S HOMEMAKERS TO THINK ABOUT THANKSGIVING & CHRISTMAS . . .

IMG_0935 IMG_0936Although we do Christmas marketing almost year-round, back in the mid-century time no one thought seriously about Christmas stuff until after the American Thanksgiving in late November.  But, if you’re making lots of your gifts . . . . .

McCalls needlework magazine promoted doing just that – to economize as well as adding a personal touch.  Can you imagine getting all that done ?!

For many of our grandmothers, that was just part of the day-to-day.  And, they did produce beautiful things – from hats, gloves, sweaters, socks and scarves to dolls & their clothing, tablecloths & bedspreads, just to name a few.

I love discovering some special true vintage handmade item that was probably made as a gift or a table decoration for a special family holiday. . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

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EARLY 1960’S FUN AND GAMES – WHAT A DIFFERENT LIFE OUR GRANDMOTHERS LED!

IMG_1039IMG_1040These McCalls magazine needlework ads would make you think that our grandmas’ lives were all about simple fun in the kitchen and scheming to get their husbands to give in to their wishes.

That’s the stereotype, isn’t it?  I wonder how much of that is true?  Don’t think I want to go back there, but the sweater is gorgeous!

Hand-knits from that era are really special, sweet and innocent styles . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

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TRUE VINTAGE MID-CENTURY FALL COATS & JACKETS TO MAKE AT HOME!

IMG_1030 IMG_1048 Need a new coat?  Well, in just a few minutes of your spare time . . . . . . Right!   McCalls Needlework Magazine used to publish patterns for projects like these all year.  In the 1950’s and 1960’s it was so common.

Aren’t they beautiful? – But, can you imagine making one??  Your grandmother might have.  I rarely find a hand-knitted one now, but once in a while . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

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HEY, MOM – I NEED A HALLOWEEN COSTUME! NO WORRIES FOR OUR 1950’S HOMEMAKER . . .

IMG_0966 IMG_0963     She’d just pull out the latest edition of her McCalls Needlework magazine.  And, of course, there is the Christmas Pageant, too . .. . .

I can’t believe the intricacy of these home-sewing DIY patterns.  Women used to do this all the time!

Once when I was a kid, my (I thought) non-sewing grandmother did  whip up a very convincing 1960’s black collarless jacket for me when I wanted to be a Beatle for Halloween.  Who knew?  . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

BEAUTIFUL HAND-MADE DRESSES FOR FALL

IMG_1046 IMG_1026 Yes, a lot of our grandmothers and great-grandmothers knitted dresses like these at home!  So hard to imagine.

IMG_1035 IMG_1027These photos from the Fifties and early Sixties come from McCall’s Needlework magazine – a popular and easy-to-find magazine that could be bought the way we might buy Vogue or Glamor now, on a newsstand somewhere.  Of course, knitted dresses were made commercially, too, and I’ve found several.  But, the custom-made one-of-a-kind is always the most special.

P.S. Please vote in the Presidential election if you are a U.S. citizen.  Get registered if you need to or check your registration status.  This is a very important one – not one to sit out. . . . . . . ..

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

SPEAKING OF FIFTIES & SIXTIES SWEATERS – SOME FUN EXAMPLES TO KNIT AT HOME!

IMG_1041IMG_1042IMG_1044IMG_1045IMG_1032      McCalls needlework magazine from 1961 has patterns and instructions for these neat tops.  It was one of those times when the fashion gets really playful.  My most recent finds on this trip are ’60’s!

Not quite so intimidating as trying to make some of the dresses and coats, but challenging enough!  There’s no mistaking the styles from that time and I’ll be showing more . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM