A 1940’s Hair Piece

This little accessory can be created for under $5 and takes only about 10 minutes!  

I highly recommend creating one of these hair pieces if you can’t find/afford a hat that goes with your ensemble but can’t bear the thought of a bare head.  I created mine with a fall theme, but you can design one for any season.  Try holly for Christmas, daffodils for Easter, or magnolias for the summer…the possibilities are truly endless.

Materials:

  • 1/2 yard tulle
  • silk flowers
  • a hair comb
  • wire or needle and thread
  • wire snips

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Because the two flowers I wanted to use were attached to a floral pick, I began by removing them.  They had enough wire attached to their stems, that I did not need any additional wire…but feel free to use some if you just have flower heads.

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Next, cut out a piece of tulle that measures 24″ x 21″ the wider part being the width of the veil and will be gathered to the comb.  Fold in half.  I used weights to keep the tulle from shifting.

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Round off the bottom of the tulle to desired length and shape.  My finished veil measured 22″ wide by 18″ long.

DSC_0058Run a gathering stitch along the widest part of the tulle.  Gather to fit the hair comb.  Tie off if needed.

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Sew to the hair comb.  Be careful how you attach this part.  I wanted the hair comb to go straight back into my hair (think tiara) and have the veil lay over my face.  Because of this, I was careful to sew the tulle so no messy edge would be visible from the front.

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Now attach your flowers.  Again, the veil should go over your flowers as well, so make sure that you attach them on the wrong side of the tulle.   If you look at the above picture, the flowers will be attached on top of the tulle, and the tulle will fall over it.  Wire or sew to the hair comb.

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**Underneath of the comb

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**The above picture shows the hair piece with the comb part facing the camera.

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And thats it!  Very easy, affordable, and adjustable to outfit, season, and personal taste.

Here are a few examples of flower hair pieces.  Imagine these with tulle in a variety of hues and textures!

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Happy Designing!

~Aimee

 


On My Inspiration Board: Plaid

When I think of the epitome of Fall and what it stands for, I think three things:

  1. Pumpkin Spice Lattes
  2. Football
  3. Plaid

While plaid can be worn at anytime of the year, it seems most at home during the cooling months of September, October, and November.  Not only can this fabric echo the tones of nature during this season, it also evokes warmth and coziness that one begins to crave.  Sure, you can go to a pumpkin patch in any old jacket, but if that jacket happens to be made of plaid, you certainly look cuter and may just find that perfect pumpkin!

Last month, I focused on gingham, plaid’s sweeter and brighter cousin.  Amazingly similar in design, yet are in many ways, such opposites in the mood and feeling they can create on the wearer.  I myself have picked up quite a few plaid blouses for the season and must say, I do feel more autumnal.  Here is one of them:

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Loft blouse

Just like gingham, plaid has gone through it’s own rise and fall.  While never truly out of style, one can find more examples of plaid in the early 1800’s, midcentury, and again during the 1930’s and 40’s.  I would even say that we are in the middle of a rise in popularity right now based on the items available in stores.

Here are a few of my favorite examples of plaid gowns:

Plaid Inspiration Board

Match the season around you, and don some plaid!

~Aimee

To see more examples, feel free to visit my Plaid Gown Pinterest Page.


From Man’s Shirt to Woman’s Apron

This little apron is truly remarkable when you consider it was made from the sleeves of a man’s shirt!  

 A common practice during the Depression Era as well as World War II, this apron breathes new life into an old piece of clothing.

 Try this with any shirt or pattern you like!

Materials:

  • one large/ x-large man’s shirt

Process:

Lay the shirt out flat and then cut out the sleeves.

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Cut the sleeves in half down the seam, right above the placket.

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Stitch the two edges together.  You want the small points to be on the outside of the apron.

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Now trim off the excess fabric to create a smooth shape.

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Hem all sides.

Next, cut out the top panel from the bottom of the shirt.  This natural curve of the shirt creates a nice line for the top of the apron.  My panel is 9″ by 7″.  Hem three sides, then attach to the apron waist band, right sides together.

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Cut one side seam of the shirt to free the front panel.  Cut out two ties (about 3″ wide each) up to the shoulder seam.

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Make the ties, then stitch, right sides together, to the apron waistband!

To wear, simply pin top panel at desired place, then tie around waist.

That’s it!  Enjoy your new apron!!

~Aimee

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Packing the Lunch Box

Hands down one of the best parts of the day is lunch.  Not being a big breakfast eater, I am usually starving by lunch and thoroughly look forward to the “time-out” feeling that lunchtime provides.  Whether I am at home or at work, I eagerly look forward to that noon hour….especially if I packed something tasty!

Growing up, my brother and I were creatures of habit, especially about lunch.  We would go through fads that would last years.  My favorite lunch foods mirrored my rise through the grades and, of course, what the other kids would bring for lunch.  Elementary school lunch consisted of a snack bag of chips, a little can of fruit (remember those with the pop tops?), a Little Debbie, and a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.  The latter was not my favorite part and would often be used to trade with other kids…sorry mom! 🙂  The older I got, the more I morphed into yogurts, and I think my every day lunch in high school was a blueberry bagel….that must be where I developed my TMJ.

Anyways, lunch was and is still my favorite time of the day, and what you bring your lunch in is every bit as important.  While today I splurge on Vera Bradley lunch boxes, as a child I was quite fond of Minnie Mouse….in fact here is a picture of the lunchbox I used for my early elementary years.

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It even came with a thermos that I don’t believe I ever use….  I was mostly into juice boxes! 🙂

Packing a lunch has always been important, not only for taste, but for nutrition.  And many parents would spend just that extra time to make sure that everyone’s lunch was appealing, healthy, and hopefully eaten!

Here are a few excerpts from a 1950’s cookbook on how to pack the perfect lunch:

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May your lunchtime always be tasty, relaxing, and filling!

~Aimee

Source: Betty Crocker’s Good and Easy Cook Book, 1954


Introduction to Tucks: Part One

I love the look of tucks on a dress.  I find the look to be so sweet and elegant, and are surprisingly very easy to create.  All you need is a steady hand and a little bit of patience.  The most common types of tucks are the basic tuck, the corded tuck, and the lesser known shell tuck.

Here are a few examples:

Tuck Examples

This week we will learn how to make a basic tuck and a corded tuck, starting with a basic tuck.

The basic tuck can be created either vertically or horizontally to add interest or take up extra length on a skirt.  This tuck can be used on any year of historical sewing.

The corded tuck adds some weight to garments and is often found on petticoats.

The only rule of thumb for any type of tuck is to make sure you add in extra fabric when you cut out your pattern to accommodate the tucks.

Basic Tuck and Corded Tuck Tutorial

Next post: Making a Shell Tuck


Clothes and Beauty Advice for the College Bound Girl

I can still remember with clarity the first year I went off to college.  I had nightmares weeks before that included being left behind as my family took everything but me,  that I was late to the first days of class, and that I would be forced to sit and eat alone, publicly snubbed for some unknown fault.

When the day finally did arrive I packed everything I owned…literally…everything.  It was a little ridiculous.  But, nonetheless, I set off with my family to begin an wonderful part of my life that taught me independence, self-reliance, and that I really could get by with surprisingly little.

While schools today are very clear, as are department stores, what a college student needs to bring with them to survive, they aren’t so clear about the clothing lists.  Perhaps if I had a guide such as this from a 1925 book, I wouldn’t have brought 7 large trash bags full of clothes!  I guess I didn’t use suitcases back then… 😉

Clothes for the 1920's College Girl

Here is a pamphlet showing the perfect blouse to send off with the college-bound girl!

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With a lists such as these, girls would be more than prepared for the challenges of secondary education…and to have more fun!

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Despite the apparent chill in the air, these girls still look to be enjoying themselves…and in such stylish clothes…check out the fur coat in the center!

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A candy apple is the perfect snack to munch on in between classes! 🙂

Don’t forget the perfect beauty advice!  Good Housekeeping offers this take on beauty and gifts parents can bestow upon their collegiate:

1940's College Girl Beauty Advice 1

1940's College Girl Beauty Advice 2

I hope you enjoyed this little trip down memory lane…I know I did!

Happy Friday everyone!

~Aimee

Sources: Harmony in Dress by Mary Brooks Picken, 1925

               Good Housekeeping, August 1941

Clothes and Beauty Advice for the College Bound Girl

 


From My Sewing Table : September

Ever since I was a very little girl starting pre-school, September was always the start of my year.  January may be the beginning of the calendar year, but for me, September was my fresh start with the promise of new opportunities.

Long past the days of lunch boxes and backpacks, I still find that I get excited for this new season, and ready not only myself, but my house.  I have spent August pruning my closet, eating as much ice cream and hamburgers as I can hold, and basically lounging around as much as possible.  But once the first few days of September roll around, I feel energized and rejuvenated.  Maybe it is the crisp air, or the smell of the changing leaves that births this annual excitement.  Maybe it’s the bountiful harvest of apples, pears, and pumpkins that not only become delicious desserts, but also decorate my home both indoors and out.  Or perhaps it is the ingrained nature from growing up with the knowledge that September meant new clothes, reunions with old friends, and a new chance to learn and explore.

My sewing has already begun to shift from airy, light fabrics, to plaids, tweeds, and wool.  I am working hard on a 1919 outfit which has proven to be a fun challenge, as I still struggle mentally with the lower waistline.  I am also excited about a few repurposing tutorials that embodies my rejuvenation spirit of Autumn.  All in all, September is shaping up to be a beautiful and fulfilling month.

So whether you are a few or many years out from the days of books and classes, go ahead and view this month as a new season full of the same eagerness it use to hold.  Embrace the wonderful things to come and make this month A Time to Learn, by welcoming the Fall with wide, open arms.

~Aimee

A few upcoming posts to look for this month:

  • Clothes and Beauty Advice for the College Bound Girl (1920’s-1940’s)
  • From Man’s Shirt to Woman’s Apron (1920’s)
  • Take a field trip to Ferme Bonne Mine, as we learn more about  this wonderful, family-run farm.  In the meantime, feel free to visit their blog, or their online shop as featured in last month’s post.
  • Keep an eye out for this month’s Sewing Tip Saturday, where we focus on Tucks.

September Inspiration Board

Cover Photo: From 1900’s Advertising Calendar