EARLY 1950’S HOME-CRAFTED ACCESSORIES FOR THE NEW CASUAL LOOK. FINGERTIPS TO TOE . . .

Big decorated tote bags! These are often associated with the 1960’s, but the trend started long before. Whimsical, cute, pretty; whatever your fancy. Big skirts of hand-woven material; how Boho of you! This called for home-made colorful ankle-wrap sandals, designed to match your outfits – a bit of throw-back to 1940’s styles.

As always in mid-century magazines, the pages are also filled with special-interest advertisements and mail-order offers. Women were constantly encouraged to go into home-based business selling accessories and home-assembled items which they could start with a kit by mail or correspondence course – early front-runners to today’s online marketing.

While time and culture kept marching forward, we can continue to see the reluctance to give up previous ways of being and doing things. Just like today, there were big leaps forward that surprised everyone alternating with slow-grinding incremental change that almost seemed like no change at all. However, also like today, it was accelerating . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG: MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

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

A 1960’S HOME-SEWN SUMMER SCOOTER DRESS

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How cute is this – and, in wonderful condition?!  Nice two-tone probably cotton fabric, with a flippy pleated skirt and button tab decoration at the hip-line.  It was fashioned at home by a seamstress with confidence who made exactly what she wanted, with a perfect fit for her.  It’s a little big on me, but the style makes it super-easy to alter the size.

I can just imagine Ann-Margret in a frock like this one, riding on the back of a scooter in a mid-century movie.  What a treat!

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

 

 

IT’S SO MUCH FUN!! HOME-SEWN DAY DRESSES FROM THE 1960’S

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More custom-tailored stories coming my way – this cute cotton summer frock practically lets me follow the seamstress’s journey as she made this dress for herself.  It’s so fun to think of a girl or woman, way back in the day, going to the fabric store and finding a pattern she loves – picking the material she wants and using her sewing skills learned in Home Ec class and the dreams in her imagination to create a dress that she’ll love to wear.

Wish Stella were here to model it for me, but if you know anything about sewing, all the details of this dress make it crystal clear.  Although I love finding gorgeous designer frocks from the 1940’s, Fifties and before, a simple homemade garment is one of the sweetest surprises. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . .  .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

A VERY PRETTY TRUE VINTAGE DRESS, HOME-SEWN IN THE 1950’S

A VERY PRETTY TRUE VINTAGE DRESS, HOME-SEWN IN THE 1950'S

Another favorite, the ’50s styles with nipped waists.  Love ’em! – who doesn’t – they’ve remained a fashion favorite for many years and a style that keeps on repeating itself.  The bateau neckline is also a favorite – SO flattering.  I call it a summer dress, but the cotton material is heavy, so it’s perfect to wear almost all year.

The skirt on this one has a bell shape, too – an unusual feature that is somewhat unique.  This dress was custom-tailored and the construction is very unusual. I’ve never seen anything like it.  Although it zips up the back, there is also an inner bodice that hooks together.  It may have been the design of the woman who sewed it – in place of a bra(?)

Sometimes you’ll find a garment like this that is as interesting on the inside as it is on the outside.  The tailoring details can sometimes be elaborate, even on commercially-made items.  Not to mention what seamstresses can come up with on their own when they’re being creative –

I actually bought this at a shop, which is unusual for me.  There are lots of great ones that I have visited and included in my book references – no better place to see a collection of wonderful things in one spot and get the wisdom of the owner’s knowledge.  It pays to know all the different types of places where true vintage likes to hide – because you just never know .. . . . ..

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

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LOVELY COTTON SHIRT-WAIST FROM THE 1950’S – EARLY 1960’S

LOVELY COTTON SHIRT-WAIST FROM THE 1950'S - EARLY 1960'S IN FALL COLORS

Here’s another dress from about the same time as the last one.  It has the same features of design – the side metal zipper is the most significant.  I don’t know why that was a favorite feature, rather than allowing the front opening to be longer.

Although it was more trouble to put that side zip in, it was hidden (more or less) from view and allowed the front and back lines of the garment to be unbroken.  My best guess is that this style feature is more elegant than a back zip or long front opening would be.

So many of the styles and tailoring methods from the ’50’s and before paid a lot of attention to keeping the lines of a garment very elegant, with good fit and clean silhouette.  Back zippers on pants and skirts are a good example of this.

This dress is, I’m sure, custom tailored.  The skill of the sewer is excellent and it would challenge the quality of any commercially-made things today, outside of haute couture.

The reds, golds and mossy browns in this print make me think of leading into Fall, but let’s not rush our summertime, when the livin’ is easy . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, the Magicvintagespy
Blog: Magicvintagespy.com
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ANOTHER CLASSIC MID-CENTURY HANDBAG FIND!

I already have many tooled leather handbags in my collection, but it’s always open to another unique and high-quality item.  These purses are SO special, because they are hand-made, one-of-a-kind and often tell a story.  This one is beautifully-done, has older traditional motifs and a DOG(!), which always captures my heart.  It was probably a tribute to a beloved pet and is signed by the maker – no relation to me, but what a coincidence!

And, in beautiful condition – I’ll enjoy this one for a long time.

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.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.

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

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

ANOTHER NEW FIND – MOD TRUE VINTAGE 1960’S LIME GREEN DRESS

Lime green was a huge color in the mid to late-’60’s.  Some gal decided to whip up a little mini dress in that hue for Spring or Summer.  The style is almost like the tent dresses that were popular then, too, but with more fitting on top.  It’s a little small on Stella, but the basic fit is right.

Again, it’s made of the looser-weave hopsacking kind of material that I’ve talked about before, used a lot in the Sixties.  You can’t see them well, but I also love the opalescent plastic vintage buttons.   Plain design, but a very distinctive true vintage style and cute, cute, cute!

It’s the right dress to wear when you want to be very COOL, in more ways than one . . . . . . . . . . . ..

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

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