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

TRUE VINTAGE 1960’S HAND-DYED SILK BELTED TENT DRESS

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Custom-tailored in a popular style of the mid-late Sixties, batik dyed silk tent dress that I like to wear belted. It also has a shawl made of the same material that completely transforms the look.

Wearing it un-belted is also a completely different look, but not my style. This cut can work for almost any figure, but really looks great on curvy Madge. That’s her edge over slender Stella, so they’re getting along fine .. . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

MORE DRESSES! 2: CUSTOM-TAILORED MID-CENTURY SLINKY SHEATH

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This one’s a sexy day dress with ruching at the waistline to give it a bit of curvy shape, while still staying very proper.  Love the abstract atomic print in subtle shades that could go to work, or dinner, or . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Hand-tailored frocks are so much fun to discover because they always tell a story about the designer.  This style is so versatile – I’ll enjoy it, too.  More on the way . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

HAND-TAILORED AND ELEGANT: MID-CENTURY SILK SHEATH DRESS FROM HONG KONG

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This dress is another keeper!  I wish Stella were here to model it for you – it’s so beautiful. So chic and elegant, of 100% silk with a floral jacquard design, with all the fine details that would be expected from an expert tailor.   This dress was made in the late 1950’s – early 1960’s by a tailoring firm especially for a higher-end shop in the Bahamas.

Excepting for the missing original belt and a few stitches in the hem which need to be repaired, it is in perfect condition.   A dress of this type would have been especially prized by it’s mid-century owner, and protected from damage.  That’s why it’s still possible, if you are lucky, blessed and skilled, to discover these frocks today.

I’m also fortunate to be of a size that was more or less average at that time, so I can wear many of my finds without alterations.  However, an expert cleaning service will have skilled seam-sters who can work wonders when necessary, so carry on . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY’

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

HEADING FURTHER BACK IN TIME – A HAND-TAILORED FLORAL FROCK WITH A FULL CIRCLE SKIRT

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In a ’50’s to early ’60’s style, but with mid-1960’s-type fabric this dress illustrates the creative power that home-sewers in the mid-century had over their wardrobes.  The size, style and fabric were completely at their discretion and genre’s could be combined in any way.

This example was made for a teen or a petite woman (the photo is somewhat foreshortened, too, so it’s not quite as short-waisted as it looks), probably as a dressy day or party dress.  It’s a simple style in cotton blend with a zip back and elasticized sleeves but shows evidence of extra care and skill in the insertion of piping detail at the waist and flounce on the skirt.  There are also strap-keepers sewn in at the shoulders and some seams that were done by hand.

What a fun little mystery-history to unravel!  More back to the future on the way . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

 

STILL IN DISCOVERY MODE – SOMEONE CUSTOM-TAILORED THIS CUTE LITTLE BOLERO JACKET ABOUT 60 YEARS AGO

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All hand-made – it’s a classic style which we still see, but the fit and style are different in the way that only true vintage designs can be.  It hits just above the waist and belongs over a plain, black or white dress.  I probably have one or two that will fill the bill . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM