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All Things Baby…and a Gender Reveal

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It has been a very busy two weeks.

I have been sewing up a storm and working very hard at this tricky little thing called online marketing.  And since my brain has been swimming with all the things that need to get done, I thought I would take a little mental break.  And what more perfect way to take my mind off all the craziness than to focus on my happy little bundle that is due in less than four months!

Four months!! Eeeek!!! 🙂

The past few weeks have also been a bit of a roller coaster when it came to finding out the gender of our baby.  Since I am a planner, and sewer, it was important to me that I find out the gender in advance so I could plan and get as much done as I could before the baby comes.  So when our doctor told us at our 12 week sonogram that she was 85% sure she knew what the gender was, of course, we couldn’t wait to hear!  Imagine our joy when she said it was a boy!  My husband and I were both over the moon and began planning the nursery, choosing names, and getting just plain excited.

Well, we knew we had to go back for the second sonogram so we decided that we would wait to start buying things until we were sure, but we had definitely everything picked out.  So the day of the second sonogram came and we excitedly went to the doctor, eager to see our son again.  As we enjoyed watching our little one on the computer, the technician asked if we were ready to know the gender…which, of course, we were.  I mean, we were ready for a confirmation of what we already knew.  So as the two of us waited to hear the words “It’s a boy” emerge from her lips, when she said very matter of factly, “It’s a girl!”

Wait, what?  

We both just about fell out of our chairs (or the medical bed in my case.)

A girl???  

As we scraped our jaws up from off the floor, my husband mentioned that last time we came they thought it was a boy.  “Well, that does happens sometimes, although it is rare.” was her response.  Oh.  Good to know.

Sooooooooo after going through shock, a complete mind shift, and a new name search, we are happy to announce we are having a girl!!!!

 And with all this exciting news, I decided it was time to dedicate a post to all things maternity and baby!

 

Let’s begin with this 1860’s photograph and a mother and child. Both of whom, I may add, are impeccably dressed!

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These 1910 maternity dresses are perfect for both pre and post baby!

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These two moms to be from the 1940’s look absolutely adorable in their maternity dresses!!!

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While I can’t say the super tight skirt looks all that comfortable, I adore the loose fitting top from this 1960’s sewing pattern.

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This entire 1940-1950 collection for a baby is just fantastic!  What a wide variety offered in this pattern!!

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And for when they get a little older, these little girl dresses from the 1910’s-early 1920’s  are absolutely perfect!

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And for some modern takes on vintage dresses, this ADORABLE dress tutorial by Craftiness is Optional is perfect in every sense of the word!  Link is under the image.

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Craftiness is Optional

And who wouldn’t want a few bonnets to match those precious little dresses.  This tutorial from Simple Simon and Company is as easy as it is sweet!  Link under image.

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Simple Simon and Company

 

So if someone ever says to you there is an 85% chance…..be highly doubtful!! 😉

Happy Friday everyone!!!

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A Timeline of Fashion’s Influence

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A few weeks ago, I was contacted by the British men’s clothing company T.M. Lewin.  While I never have personally purchased clothing from them, I was very aware of the name and longevity. Established in 1898, they have spent the past one hundred years providing high quality men’s clothing and are well-known for the introduction of the button down shirt.  So what, may you ask, is a men’s clothing store doing reaching out to me, a women’s historical clothing blog?  Well, the company wished to celebrate 300 years of British influence on men’s fashion and wondered if I would be interested in participating.  At first, I wasn’t sure what I could do.  I mean, I enjoy men’s clothing, but enough to write about it?  I just wasn’t sure.  So I thought and spent some time studying the fabulous timeline graphic they sent me, and realized the large connection between men and women’s clothing. I thoroughly enjoyed my time researching and loved finding examples of women’s fashion that directly corresponded with men’s.

So, with all that said, I decided to participate in their celebration…but with my own twist.  Below you will find sections of their timeline along with examples of women’s fashion which bears influence and connection….although with a bit more grace and femininity!

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The 1700’s

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I choose to highlight the floral impact on fashion for this particular century.  While today, most individuals equate floral prints exclusively as women’s clothing, that was not always the case.  Notice the embroidery on the men’s suit, along with the influence on the floral print of the women’s gown below!  Both are absolutely stunning!

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1770’s Floral Gown from the Digitalt Museum

The 1800’s

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I have a slight obsession with anything Regency.  I just do.  So clearly, out of this century, I had to pick something from the 1810’s.  And what better choice than showing examples of the riding coat!

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1815 Men’s and Women’s Riding Outfits, Kyoto Costume Institute 

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My second choice to highlight from this century is the Sack Coat from the years 1850-1860.  A loose fitting outwear garment that was worn by both men and women.  Similar in shape, color and decorations were the two only real ways that this coat differed.

Men’s Version

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Women’s Version

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The 1900’s

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From this century, the first item that stood out to me is the trench coat.  A item that is just as popular today as it was a hundred years ago.  Similar in color and shape, women tweaked this item to create a coat known as a duster.  A handy little item used to protect one’s gown from those dusty automobile rides!

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Of course, post on 20th century fashion would not be complete without a little 1940’s love.  With the suit a well established staple for men, women, especially during the second world war, followed suit…no pun intended! 🙂  Similar in pattern and shape, both genders embraced the structured look the suit of the 1940’s offered.

Men’s Version

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Women’s Version

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This reciprocal exchange of fashion influence will continue to shape fashion for decades, and I daresay, centuries to come.  But with tweaks here  and there, each gender can appreciate and enjoy something unique!

Many thanks to T.M. Lewin for inspiring this post!!

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A Little Flower Power

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We aren’t even half way through February and I have major garden fever.  I’m craving bulbs, blooms, and bright happy colors.  I’m getting a little sick of looking out my window and seeing various shades of brown.  Sick, I tell you!!

A few weeks ago, it had warmed up to shockingly spring like temperatures.  In fact, we had almost three or four days of such warmth that you almost became used to it.  Except it was January, and not March….and one felt a little depressed.  But it wasn’t until I saw the tip of a little bloom from my spring bulbs that one realized the danger of such warmth.  And sure enough, within two days of the bulb sighting, we received 8 inches of snow.  Now all I can do is stare out the window at the snow covered flower bed, and hope my little bulb is okay.

So until the outside matches up with my wishes, I shall have to content myself with pictures, decorations, and dreams.  And just in case you are in the same boat as I am, I thought I would share some flower inspiration to keep out spirits up!

This 1840’s gown shows the dedication one person had to infuse their clothing with lovely little floral accents.  I wonder if she did this during the dull days of winter?

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While I would make sure to wait to wear these 1920’s shoes once the snow melted, I am most certain they would boost my spirits immensely!  Although, I would have to find a whole new outfit to match them….

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With so many color and pattern choices in this 1930’s ad to choose from, I think I would like a frock in every floral pattern available!

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Even though this would be a little too chilly to wear right now without a sweater, I can’t help but smile at those happy little rosebuds all over this full cotton sun dress!

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Any table would instantly feel more springy and bright with a floral stand like this one from Pier One (link below.)

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Pier One 3-Tiered Stand

So until spring makes it’s way to my area, I shall find ways to bring a little more flower power into my life now!

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Fashion Plate Fun

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Today I thought it would be fun to browse through a variety of fashion plates!  I mean, who doesn’t love a little gown envy?!  

I decided to share a few of my favorites starting around 1830 and going up to 1940.  Ranging from daywear to evening wear, these fashion plates are just the thing to get your fashion juices flowing!  

Let’s get started!

This 1830’s evening gown is in the most amazing color of blue I have ever seen!

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These 1850’s gowns are perfect examples of visiting or afternoon gowns.

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While it is a toss up between the two, I am in love with the yellow 1860’s ballgown with red floral accents.

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While I am sure walking was very difficult in this particular creation, I still love the color and pattern combinations of this 1880’s gown.

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A lovely array of turn of the century shirtwaists.  

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Sigh….I adore every single one of these 1910’s outfits.  

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Perfect for summer vacations, these 1920’s outfits are just made for an ocean resort.

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This soft blue 1930’s gown looks wonderful with or without the jacket!

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The pleated floral dress on this 1940’s fashion plate is adorable!

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So whether you love 19th or 20th century fashion, are a seamstress or costume designer, or simply appreciate the look of the past, I hope these fashion plates offer inspirations and a few day dreams!

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Regency Chemisette Video Tutorial

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I am so excited about today’s post as it has been a long time in coming! 

Using inspiration from a variety of sources, I have created a video tutorial and pattern on how to create a Regency Era Chemisette custom designed to fit you!  Simply open up the PDF pattern, follow the guidelines on how to create the pattern pieces, then watch the videos below to  learn how to create your very own chemisette.  

Tutorial will help you create a chemisette with one or two ruffles (as pictured in images below.)

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(Image from Janet Arnold’s Patterns of Fashion I)

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(Painting of 1800 Empress Elizabeth Alexeievna, artist unknown)

REGENCY CHEMISETTE VIDEO TUTORIAL

Click the underlined link below to open up PDF pattern.

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***Videos show how to create a two ruffle chemisette.  If desired, simply cut out two ruffles using measurements presented in pattern****

Part One

In this video section, I will show you how to construct the frame of the chemisette and create the neckline darts.

Part Two

In this section we will stitch darts, sew cording/ribbon channels, and begin to work on the ruffle.

Part Three

This portion will show you how to pleat the ruffle.  

Part Four

Now that the ruffle is pleated, this part will show you how to create the ruffled neckline in order to attach it to the chemisette.

Part Five

This last video details attaching the ruffle to the neckline and completing all the finishing touches.

And that’s it!  

Feel free to play around and create various styles and necklines of chemisettes!  

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And as always, feel free to share a picture of your own creation on social media!  

  Simply post on my Facebook page or use the tag #aimeevictorian on Instagram.  Links to both platforms are on the sidebar of my blog!

Happy Sewing!

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Cover Painting

By Pierre Louis Bouvier GENEVA 1766 – 1836

Sources Used:

Janet Arnold Patterns of Fashion 1

Various of paintings from 1805-1015

Vintage rooms I would love to visit….

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Sometimes I wish I could redo some room in my house in historical theme and then switch it back when I was through.  Unfortunately I have neither the time, energy, or money to accomplish such a task.  Therefore, I am left to dream about the fun of experiencing and living in various rooms from various time periods…without spending a dime.

Here are a few of my favorite vintage rooms I would just love to spend a week living in!

While I would never go so aggressive with one color in my bedroom today, I would love to try it out!  And this 1940’s purple inspired room would be so fun!

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This 1950’s kitchen is so homey and inviting.  I can already smell the apple pie cooking!

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I would absolutely love to having a living room just like the Ricardo’s second apartment…love the curtains!

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This 1950’s living room would be a wonderful place to read, chat, or take a nap!

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Equally as lovely is this 1940’s sitting room! 

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And who wouldn’t love to sip an ice cold glass of lemonade on a veranda such as this 1950’s example?!

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Even if I can’t create and visit rooms like this today, I can still appreciate their charm and appeal!!

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A Look at “Simple” Pottery for the Table

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Very few of us today use fancy china more than one or two times a year.  I, unfortunately, fall into that category and find that I much prefer to use my everyday “heartier” dishes.  While this may be the case with many of us today, it is fun to look back and notice that this wasn’t always the case.  Around the late 1880’s using china on a daily basis was the norm, however there began to be a switch around the 1920’s to embracing more humble forms of pottery for the more simpler meals of the day. For example, the following excerpt describes the appropriate times and locations to use more simple pottery.

“A third class of tableware is “pottery.”  It is , as a rule, the least carefully, and therefore the least expensively, made tableware…We speak of the simple “tea-room” variety, gay in color and elemental as to decorate, such as all are familiar with.  Some of our readers may have collected pieces of such pottery when traveling in various parts of the world and know that it is the type of earthenware used by peasants, and for this reason the simple designs are often called “peasant patterns.”  Peasant patterns are seen on earthenware also, and because appropriate for use in the simplest homes called also “cottage” patterns.  If the house or apartment is as simple as the pottery (it may be so and yet beautiful) then you may use this ware for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  In some homes, pottery is appropriate for breakfast and lunch and tea, but the dinner table may call for more formal china.”

 – excerpt from Be Your Own Decorator by Emily Burbank, 1922

When I read this, I imagine two different types of pottery.  One earthy, rustic, and displayed on a shelf like this:

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Image from deja-vu

And the other, bright, bold and simple!

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See current samples of Cornish Ware.

Regardless of which way you envision these “cottage” dishes, I love the idea that they have their place in the realm of tableware.  That just because they are “simple” it doesn’t mean they are any less special at meal time.

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Cover Photo by New Home Interior Design

Winter Outfits: 1870-1940

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Another cold snap has hit and brought with it a foot of snow!  I can’t really complain as I love the snow, but it certainly does require quite a bit of bundling up.  On days like this, I pull out my faithful down coat and matching snow boots, suit up, and then head out to brace the winter wind. Of course, I promise myself if I can complete all my errands without too much resentment towards the bitter cold, then I can have a nice hot cup of cocoa when I come home…its a great compromise!

So despite the chill outside, today’s post is all about warm and stylish winter clothing!  To start with, I found this fascinating timeline on gdfalksen.com.  I absolutely love the purple tones and enjoy seeing the change of fashion.

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Image by gdfalksen.com

And out of all these lovely looks, I found some extras that I just had to include!

Here are two 1880’s ensemble, with one featuring a lovely face veil.

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This 1918 look has a lovely matching fur collar and muff…and those pleat/skirt drapings are to die for!

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Another lovely collection of 1910’s winter wear…the brown coat ensemble in the foreground is my favorite.

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Stylish and sporty describe this 1930’s winter look!  I love how, despite the activity,  her hat is perfectly perched on her well coifed hair.

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This adorable duo, also from the 1930’s, are displaying to very different, yet very attractive winter coats!

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A true hallmark of the 1940’s period, this winter look is clean, simple, and adorably functional!

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Bundle up everyone!  It’s going to be a cold one today! 🙂

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