MID – CENTURY TRUE VINTAGE ELEGANCE: WHAT REALLY MAKES THE DIFFERENCE

IMG_1400IMG_1403In these few photos IMG_1404from an early – 1960’s needlework magazine, the styles are very plain and, in some cases, they are so generic that they’re very boring!  BUT, every woman pictured looks smart, elegant, fashionable and attractive.

Obviously, it’s not mostly about their clothing.  Sure, they’re all slim and attractive people but that’s not the main thing, either.  Take away the good fit and quality of what they are wearing (super-important as a base for everything else) and what is left that REALLY does it?

It’s their grooming, posture and ACCESSORIES.  None of those ensembles would look half as good without the accessorizing touches – imagine each of them without the necklace, bracelet, gloves or handsome handbag.  Makes a big difference, doesn’t it?

So, as much as I love fabulous true vintage style and details I also know that I can easily stand out in a room dressed in a plain ’50’s skirt and sweater, or even a pair of jeans with a great true vintage shirt.  Our grandmothers understood that perfectly.  And today, it’s VERY easy NOT to stand out . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

 

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NOW FOR THE TRUE VINTAGE LATE SUMMER PARTY DRESSES AND FALL FROCKS TO HAND-KNIT

IMG_1028 IMG_1043From the early 1960’s, frocks just perfect for weddings, parties or just being pretty.  Like my others, these patterns come from a McCalls Needlework Magazine of that era.

IMG_1025This was the type of project our grandmothers might have busied themselves with over the  early winter months.  I know that my friend who gave me these did!

Women who loved to knit, crochet and sew looked forward to the new patterns just like  women look forward to fashion magazines and runway shows now.

Simple pleasures, but stunningly pretty and very true vintage . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

 

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

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

AGAIN, FUN AND RARE TO FIND – ANOTHER HAND-KNIT BABY JACKET

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It is just incredible that these things survive!  Although this cute little coat could have been made more recently by a master needle-worker, I’m betting that it’s a mid-century creation.  Much prettier in person, the yoke is composed of very intricate-looking sculptural stitches and the yarn feels like angora.

Similar to the one I showed several weeks ago, it’s pink – probably made for a girl back in the day since pink for girls and blue for boys was pretty much what everybody did when it came to babies.  There are still some women around who can knit well and a few who have taught themselves in order to revive these old skills.  But, they are a rare breed.  A classic garment like this is worth collecting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

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