PLANNING SOME SPRING CLEANING THIS WEEKEND? DO IT IN TRUE VINTAGE 1940’S STYLE . . . . . . . . . ..

PLANNING SOME SPRING CLEANING THIS WEEKEND?  DO IT 1940'S STYLE . . . . . . . . . ..

Some of you may remember that I have several day dresses made in this wrap style, but this one is distinctive.   It was made by (or modeled after one made by) a clothing company in the 1940’s which  sold this style as a house dress.  I have seen a re-print of their newspaper or magazine ad.

Nothing could be simpler or more comfy than this design.  It is practical (see the big pockets) and easy for bending and stretching into those dusty corners and down to those dirty floors.  If you don’t get too dirty, it looks nice enough to make a quick run to the market in.

This was a practical Mother’s Little Helper (before Mrs. Robinson changed the tune on that one completely) and was sold as such.  Who would have known . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

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A FAVORITE TRUE VINTAGE SPRING/SUMMER DRESS FROM THE FIFTIES, WITH A FRENCH THEME PRINT

A FAVORITE SPRING/SUMMER DRESS FROM THE FIFTIES, WITH A FRENCH THEME PRINT

I love this little shirtwaist with a saucy, sassy French foodie print. The style is what almost every woman wore as everyday dresses in the Fifties and early Sixties.  A classic day dress – house dress.

It’s a little bit sheer, so you have to wear one of your lovely slips underneath, but women almost always did during the mid-century era – sheer dress or not.  Because they were usually wearing a garter belt or girdle and nylons, they needed lingerie to mask the lines and let the dress move on top.

Perfect for shopping and light work around the home; coffee with the neighbor.  Easy to wear.

It’s what “happy days” was all about . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

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TRUE VINTAGE 1960S – ’70s GREEN FLORAL PRINT HAWAIIAN DRESS

TRUE VINTAGE 1960S - '70s GREEN FLORAL PRINT HAWAIIAN DRESS

What’s special about this find?  Aside from being about 40 years old, it is made in Hawaii – which used to mean beautiful, quality cottons and rayons and lovely workmanship.  This one doesn’t disappoint.  It has a back zipper with a small bow trim there. The neckline has piping around it and the heavy cotton material drapes nicely.  As usual, the print and color saturation are wonderful in these fabrics.

A straight, mu-mu style is very versatile and flattering to most figures.

Are you planning to attend or host some casual event this weekend, or just a laid-back day at home?  In keeping with the green spirit of this St. Patrick’s holiday, I suggest a dress like this one.  As long as it’s warm enough where you are, a dress like this can be worn almost anywhere, to do anything.  It’s even possible to dress it up with jewelry, shoes and bag.

Vintage made in Hawaii has always been so distinctive – it’s a special look all its own.  It does tend to follow style trends a bit, but some of the classic looks don’t change. I’ll be showing others that are older, too.  These have been so popular over the years that they sometimes turn up in my searches and I’m always thrilled to find them.  Just putting one on takes me to an exotic time in my mind and then, well you just never know . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

1960’S OR ’70’S SUPER WELL-MADE HOUSE DRESS

While admittedly this housedress is not among my most stellar finds, first impression was that it was too good to leave behind. When I had a closer look at home, I could really see why. The quality features are far beyond what I first noticed.

OK. We’re going to talk about QUALITY only here, because the design is not exceptionally different from many other garments of its type. One of the best things about this particular cotton/polyester blend fabric is that it is opaque enough that I could go to the door in it without being indecent. That’s a huge plus when it comes to most housecoats of this genre.

Going on to the most important questions about the quality standards of clothing, let’s talk about the construction. We like the fabric – next is the notions. In this case, that includes the buttons and the lace trim. Both are very good – lace is the nicest I’ve felt or seen in a long time, on items of this type. The buttons are little stemmed pearlized plastic buttons which are very classic. The machine embroidery on the yoke is very nice, too, but nothing to write home about when it comes to what I expect on a vintage garment.

Finally comes construction. I took a separate photo of the yoke because the design is outstanding. It raises the bar when compared to the things that are usually seen and this design is echoed on the back yoke, too. Also, the seams are really tight and neatly done – very important on an at-home garment which will be worn a lot and won’t get special care. Finally, the hem has a 1″ allowance and has been finished BY HAND!!

That is probably the sweetest thing about this piece. Makes me nostalgic for my mother’s and grandmothers’ times when these features and touches were standard on almost everything they bought. Maybe, with all the disruption and change we’re experiencing in the world today our priorities and lifestyles will change and these kinds of production standards will return. Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to count on things you buy to last at least a decade or two (or three or four) instead of just a few months?

In the meantime, there’s nothing like true vintage . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ..

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG: MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

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NEW TRUE VINTAGE DRESS FINDS! QUALITY AND DESIGN CENTER STAGE

With true vintage, I always expect better quality and design than is usually seen in stores and on the Internet now. But, the excellence of these pieces really stands out and it’s worth highlighting in detail. They’re in the queue in the next few days – so, stay tuned . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

MY BLOG: MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

MY LATEST TRUE VINTAGE FINDS – HERE’S THE BABY OF THE FAMILY . . . . . . . . . . .

From the mid-1960’s a psychedelic print wrapper house dress made at home from wonderful fabric. The material has the feel of smooth, glossy slinky knit but is woven instead. So interesting.

When I finish adding snaps where some are missing and re-attaching 1/2 of the belt tie, it’s got a comfortable but very sexy fit. You’ll have to wait until I return to Headquarters to see it properly displayed.

The moment I saw this I knew it was old and, even with the missing fasteners, the potential of a really neat house dress was obvious. Can’t wait to wear it! After this latest haul, I wonder what’s next? You just never know . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . .. . . .. . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG: MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

MORE FINDS – TRUE VINTAGE HOME-SEWN HOUSE DRESS 3 WAYS

I’ve seen many classic house dresses like this one in the rural mid-west. I’ll bet the woman who made it had sewn lots of them for herself over the years. It’s got decorative vintage buttons and a waist seam, but no pockets.

And, it’s a BIG size – the sleeveless style turns into cap sleeves – much too big for size 2 Stella, but look what happens with the addition of a belt. Belt around the waist seam at the hip level and it’s a 1920’s day dress. Cinch the waistline and it’s stylish in the 1940’s and 1950’s. So much can be done with a classic design. Leave it to those farm women to make the most cool and comfortable frocks for daily household chores, with a quick shopping trip into town thrown in.

Next, we’ll look at a dress for a city gal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG: MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

AUTHENTIC LATE 1960’S CUSTOM-TAILORED HOUSE-DRESS

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Very simple, but with the 1960’s bona-fides.  This fabric can’t be found today, no matter that some modern materials may be lookalikes at a glance.  Maybe some girl made this as a first project for Home-Ec class, though whoever it was did a pretty good job.  Not fancy; no bells and whistles, but sturdy, useful and very cute.

The elastic neckline is still stretchy and there are no stains, so someone stored this for a long time and didn’t use the heck out of it.  It’s our good fortune that many great true vintage garments were cared for this way by our moms and grandmothers, let alone the generations before.  Our current throw-away culture has played havoc with the quality of items that we can buy as well as any encouragement to keep things.  However, prices just keep going up and up out of all proportion.

Well, la-dee-da  –  not so much of a problem for the Magicvintagespy.  Wonder what’s next . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ?

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

 

 

MYSTERY PATIO HOSTESS GOWN WITH SUCH INTERESTING BACKGROUND . . . .

Long, sweeping gown in a beautiful, heavy cotton(?) – the photo on left shows the cut while the photo on right gives the true color and close-up of the interesting print.  This dress has many construction contradictions; some point to 1940’s and some to 1960’s.  Undoubtedly, it was custom-tailored.

Maybe our mid-century tailor was very experienced and knew how to use various methods to achieve exactly the slinky, hourglass fit she wanted.  The bell sleeves and commercial braid trim say 1960’s but the mid-back zipper placement, dip in the front waistline and fabulous art print fabric say 1940’s.  Looks like a film noir hostess gown.    I love a mystery!

Anyway, it’s an absolute beauty and fits me like a glove.  Dresses with the zipper placed mid-back are always a trick to get into and out of – pays to understand the method.  However, when the fit is right and the construction good, it’s a snap.  Tomorrow I’ll show you a cute shift with a clear Sixties pedigree.  Stay tuned . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM