THE QUINTESSENTIAL MID-CENTURY SHIRT-DRESS, IN ALL IT’S COUTURE SPLENDOR

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Handmade back in the day by “Rosalie Couturier” – I’ve never seen this common and popular style done so elegantly, by one seamstress.  All the best of beautiful little details and stunning fit are really only found in purely hand-tailored examples.  What a treat it was to find this one!

The fabric is also very special – a rayon or rayon blend that was used in off-the-rack garments only in the 1940’s – 1950’s, if you were lucky.  And the buttons!  I’m over-the-moon on those – heavy, polished and perfect in their iridescence.  Nothing can compare to old shell buttons.  You can see in this photo another example of the phenomenon I mentioned a day or two ago – the belt looks slightly darker, probably because it was never cleaned along with the dress.  Spy-craft!

Just in time for Spring, right out of classic cinema – Mrs. Miniver or June Cleaver would be right at home wearing this frock any old day . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

LOVELY LONG GREEN SHEATH DRESS FROM THE EARLY 1960’S

LOVELY LONG GREEN SHEATH DRESS FROM THE EARLY 1960'S

For a Spring cocktail party or a dressy date, here’s a lovely gown custom-tailored in the early Sixties.  Blue and green combined was a big trend at that time.

In a mid-weight embroidered fabric, with back zipper and simple lines. Purely sophisticated and elegant, but not a bit stuffy.

Tomorrow I’ll show some embroidered pumps that you might wear with this gown, or with the one that I’ve picked out for the  St. Patrick’s dance!

More pretty Spring fashions to come – stay tuned . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

TRUE VINTAGE SIXTIES SHEATH DRESS WITH SURPRISING TAILORING!

TRUE VINTAGE SIXTIES SHEATH DRESS WITH SURPRISING TAILORING!

The first thing I noticed about this dress was the style, and the long metal zipper on the left side.  When I looked more carefully, the unusual fabric and careful construction wowed me!  With St. Patrick’s Day coming up, need I say more?

The lining, which can be seen at the neckline, is a pale yellow.  The patterned material is light green, yellow and blue . Over that is a sheer layer of light olive, which is hardly noticeable at first but really intensifies the color of the underlying pattern!

This is a  mid-century, maybe custom-made dress of exceptional handmade quality and with beautiful design and fabric.  I LOVE finding things that are different from what I’ve seen before and being surprised!!!  That’s the best fun of sleuthing for true vintage fashion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ..

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

BOOK:  HOW TO FIND THE BEST IN VINTAGE FASHION – AVAILABLE ON AMAZON.COM

ANOTHER MID-CENTURY HANDBAG FIND, BUT SO DIFFERENT!

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Handmade by someone in the 1960’s – 1970’s era, this was a popular tote-style purse during that time.  Many were handcrafted and decorated.  It’s fun to see where she ran out of one green thread and switched to another – true vintage fashions always have a story to tell.  There’s just enough green to get you started toward St. Patrick’s Day.

Back in the day many women made these bags from scratch or from kits.  Macrame’ was common.  Unless a home wood shop was handy, the handles would be purchased and then she’d go from there in whatever fabric or weaving she chose.  Some would even be lined, but usually the handcrafted bags were not.  Designs were as original as the people who made them.  I like the pretty Spring feeling on this one, and the lavender color.

Hadn’t come across one of these in a while but, you just never know . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

TRUE VINTAGE 1940’S HAT – ONE OF THE BEST ERAS!

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“Styled by Cinderella  New York” – a classic wool brimmed hat with a sophisticated schoolgirl look. The crown is stamped “Berkshire – Mohn Brothers Co.  100% Wool”.  Love the plaid ribbon band that forms a bow with streamers in the back. There is also a little elastic chin strap attached!

Picture this with a little suit, skirt and blouse, dress, or whatever you like. Hats were SUCH a big thing in the ’40s with imaginative and flattering styles. Some of them were way over-the-top, but this one is understated and just too cute.  Look carefully for gems like this one.

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

BOOK:  HOW TO FIND THE BEST IN VINTAGE FASHION – AVAILABLE ON AMAZON.COM

Classic True Vintage Western-wear Hat

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To wear at least three seasons of the year, a wool felt classic hat will last for decades and complete almost any sportswear outfit. This men’s cowboy style from the 1970s or before is uni-sex now.

The best quality hats of this type have a leather inside hatband. A liner (often satin) is another sign that it is of high quality. Look for the maker’s name stamped inside and, often, the name of the store where it was sold.

These will turn up in lots of places if you’re savvy about where to look.   You just never know . . . .

Morgana Martin, the magicvintagespy

Blog:  Magicvintagespy.com

Book:  How to Find the Best in Vintage Fashion available on Amazon.com

FABULOUS FIND! FIREY RED TRUE VINTAGE EARLY 1950’S FROCK . . .

IMG_1467 IMG_1468Stella is doing a 1950’s Janet Leigh thing this time (she loves her wigs).  Just perfect in this custom-tailored red velveteen frock with rhinestone buttons and buckle.  It’s a little warm for this time of year – probably best for Christmas or Valentine’s Day – but, how could I resist?

It’s got those little pointy cuffs on the 3/4/ sleeves that are so stylish, and a very full skirt.  No lining or slip needed with this cotton velveteen fabric, as it’s very opaque and will be cuddly in cool weather.

The buttons and belt buckle are very nice, too.  Would be lovely to still have notions like this available at the corner store . . . . .

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

RARE FIND!! THE SWEETEST LITTLE TRUE VINTAGE BABY JACKET – A MID-CENTURY TREASURE

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SUCH FUN FINDING VINTAGE CHILDREN’S CLOTHING!  THIS COAT WAS HAND-MADE WITH LOVE.

What a gorgeous little sweater-coat!  So well-made.

It’s so unusual to discover baby clothes and toddler’s outfits.  Other than special-occasion garments like christening gowns that are made to wear only once and then folded away as keepsakes, children’s-wear tends to disappear after it’s been through months of dirty diapers, falls and messy meals.

Although this little coat probably wouldn’t have been worn every day, it would have experienced some wear and tear and has been beautifully preserved.  The style and the buttons put it smack-dab in the 1940’s – early 1960’s, when the wool yarn would also have been more common for an infant’s garment than something made since then (too hard to clean when easy-care acrylic yarn is available).  The knitter’s label, however, would have been attached some time in or after the 1960’s – or it could have been made with vintage materials and a vintage pattern at a later time.

Since the blue-for-boys, pink-for-girls thing was pretty rigid until recent years, I feel safe to say that it was made for a little girl.  It’s so intriguing to wonder about the story behind it.  Was it made by a relative or close friend or even purchased at a craft show?  I’ll always wonder – you just never know . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM