Edwardian Hairstyles

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Some hairstyles in history are complicated.  Some hairstyles in history make you very happy that you didn’t live during that time period (i.e.1830’s).  Some seem so impossible to recreate that the hair must be fake, while others will continue to find rebirths in modern decades.  But one particular look, it seems no matter who you ask, tends to be an all time favorite.  Which look am I talking about?  The Edwardian look of the 1900-1920’s.  From the Gibson Girl pouf, to the delicate waves of low buns, Edwardian women knew how to make their hair work for them.  And while curling irons were just becoming more commonly used, many relied on tried and true techniques of their mothers to complete these heavenly creations.

I have gathered a wonderful sampling of these looks to drool over…and maybe recreate for yourself! 🙂

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I simply adore these looks, and it was one of the reasons I decided to go with an Edwardian image for my blog logo.  Grecian in style, with a sprinkling of Regency, and a dash of something completely unique, the hairstyles of the early 1900’s will forever, at least in my opinion, be some of the most romantic ever created!

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Petite Fruit Pies

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When the Autumn season rolls around, I am all about making pies.  Huge pies overflowing with fruits, spices, and lots of sugar.  But during the summer months, I prefer to create smaller, more delicate pies.  I am not quite sure of the reason, but there it is nonetheless.  I try to find fruits that are in season and make only one or two small pies at a time.  This is not only affordable, it is also a time saver, as I make a large amount of pie curst once and then freeze it in small batches.

So whether I want a little pie for myself, for a party, or simply to drop off to a friend, these small creations are the way to go!

Some of the best recipes I have, comes from the Better Homes and Garden Pies and Cakes Cookbook from 1966.  The recipes range from normal fruit pies to cold and tasty creations in a variety of crusts. I have the two pages below for you to peruse and try out as your wish!  I really like the cherry pie recipes myself! 🙂

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Happy Baking!!

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The Many Looks of Miss Elizabeth Bennet

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A little while ago, I watched the six hour 1995 version of Pride and Prejudice.  I know I have mentioned it on this blog before as one of my favorite movies…and it truly is.  No matter how many times I have watched it, I still find it as wonderfully fulfilling as the first time.  Of course, drooling over all those amazing gowns doesn’t hurt either! 🙂

Yet, there have been many adaptations of this beloved story, and each with their own gowns and styles.  I thought it would be rather fun to take a look at the four most famous versions of the novel focusing on the looks of the title character (and my favorite)  – Miss Elizabeth Bennet.

1940 – Starring Greer Garson and Laurence Olivier

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While, not my favorite version, it is still considered a classic with many wonderful parts in it. However, I can’t say that the gowns worn are all that accurate.  A bit of 1860 meets 1830 with a brief stop in 1810.  With that said, here are a few of my favorite gowns from this film:

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1980 – Starring Elizabeth Garvie and David Rintoul

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Another sweet version with clothing MUCH more appropriate for the time period!  I especially love the various chemisettes that Elizabeth Bennet wears!

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1995 – Starring Jennifer Ehle and Colin Firth

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This one is the best.  Period.  Done.  I love absolutely everything about it from the scenery, to the acting, to, of course, the gowns!  If you want to be truly inspired and taken away…this is the one to see!  Here are a few of my favorite looks Lizzie wears:

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2005 -Starring Kiera Knightly and Matthew Macfadyen

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While this one takes the prize on music, I still find it a bit more Hollywood-esque than the previous versions.  However, Kiera Knightly’s Lizzie is just as spunky as the rest of them!  Here are my favorite looks from the film:

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While the gowns I have chosen from each film may not be the most glamorous, they are still captivating in their own way!  Looking at all these delicious outfits has me most definitely in the sewing mood!  I’m off to my sewing machine! 🙂

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My Favorite Things for July

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I am very excited about this very random post of my favorites things for July!  Dabbling in a little bit of everything, these five faves will (at least in my opinion) help make your July just a little bit better!

Let’s get started!

Number 1: A Small Iron by Prym

Now, this is not a new invention as I know many quilters use this little iron all the time.  However, it wasn’t until I was struggling trying to get my large iron into some pretty tricky parts of a bodice, that I realized I needed something smaller.  A great price and great little addition to anyone’s sewing room!

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Small Iron by Prym from Jo Ann Fabrics

Number 2: Lush Bath Bomb

I don’t have baths often, but when my husband brought home a little gift from the Lush store, I fell in love with this delightful smelling bath bomb!  A great way to unwind after a busy day in the garden.

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Twilight Bath Bomb by Lush

Number 3: Into the Wilderness by Sara Donati

This is not a new series to me, however it is one that I love to reread ever so often.  In an epic scale, similar to the Outlander Series, the Into the Wilderness series by Sara Donati is a fantastic historical read!

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Into the Wilderness Series by Sara Donati available at Amazon

Number 4: 1920’s Layered Dress

I love the layered look of this blue 1920’s summer dress…so much so that I am working on creating a little capelet inspired by all those airy layers!

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Number 5: Calamity Jane staring Doris Day

About a week or so ago, Turner Classic Movie played Calamity Jane staring Doris Day and Howard Keel.  While historically it is about as accurate as a Ford Focus driving down the streets of Deadwood, it is SO MUCH FUN!!  I high recommend this for an upbeat summer movie night.

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Calamity Jane with Doris Day available at TCM Store

So there you have it!  My super fun, and super random favorite things for the month of July!

Enjoy!

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On My Inspiration Board: Embroidered Gowns

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Whenever I watch a Jane Austen or Charlotte Bronte film, I always notice how many scenes have women sitting and embroidering.  While embroidering has never been a skill I have any great comfort with, I so admire the patience that goes into creating such unique pieces.  In addition to beauty, excellent embroidery (in the 18th and 19th century) was also a sign of your success at being a woman.  From samplers, to large designs, to small decals on ribbons, creating lovely scenes through thread was a talent to be embraced and cultivated.

And when one looks back at gowns from the past two hundred years, the value placed upon such embroidered additions has not wavered.  Even today, when I see an embroidered design, even on garments in modern department stores, I find it more beautiful and attractive…and often worth the extra penny it will cost to take it home.  I am sure the same can be said of women a hundred years ago, as they painstakingly took the time to decorate their gowns with signs of accomplishment.

So what better way to honor these women, than to celebrate gowns with all types of embroidery and design.  I had such a fun time looking and finding gowns, capes, and other accessories that it was very difficult to narrow the final selection down.  I also noticed that certain time periods feature more embroidery than others.  Notice the lack of 1850’s-1870’s gowns if you hop over to my Pinterest board.  While there are so many to choose from in the early 1800’s and again at the end of the century and well into the 1950’s, the middle decades feature more fabric patterns than embroidered additions.  Regardless, the design and appeal of these gowns can not be denied!

I hope you enjoy!

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To see more, feel free to visit my Pinterest Board.

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Vintage Magazine Cover Wall Collage

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Last Saturday, I spent about three hours rearranging and organizing my sewing studio.  I was trying to create a better backdrop for future videos I wish to create.  However, as I was moving things around and trying to find the best spot, I was disappointed that I didn’t have a wall that I was proud enough of to show to all of you.  Enter my new challenge…create a wall that IS worthy to show all of you!

So I decided to create a vintage magazine themed wall collage that I hope will add a little charm and appeal to my videos.  I decided to go with 1910’s Good Housekeeping and McCall’s covers as they had the most color and some of my favorite styles of art.

Here are a few of the ones I chose!

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Then I went and found some rather inexpensive white frames in various sizes to  add some interest.  I printed the images out on photo paper and then placed them in the frames.  I traced the frames out on plain paper and then marked the location of the nail on these paper shapes.  Using painters tape, I was then able to adjust, rearrange, and evaluate to my hearts content.  Once I was happy with the overall look, I then just nailed through the mark on the paper shape, removed the paper from the wall, and hung up my frames!

And here is the finished look!

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Perfect!!!

 

Have a wonderful Monday!!

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Buttons, Buttonholes, and lots of Stress

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There are (and probably always will be) two sewing skills that I will struggle with for my entire sewing career.  I may have become much better at executing this skills, however, I don’t think I will ever get over the stress associated with them.  What are these most painful parts of my sewing? Well, they are zippers and buttonholes.  I don’t like them.  I don’t enjoy them.  And they most definitely are something that I wish I could avoid.  However, I can’t and I have come to a tentative peace agreement with them, and am working hard to gain more confidence.  So in a step to get over my fear, I have decided to create a whole post on one of these areas….the buttonhole.

Despite my personal feelings about them, buttonholes have longed been used to add interest to gowns in addition to their more practical use of closing up the garment.  When I first began sewing, and began my struggle with buttonholes on the machine, I thought it would be easier to learn to hand sew them.  While it was a bit less stressful, it was a painfully long process and only looked appropriate on gowns that were pre-sewing machine (1850’s and back.)  So when I upgraded to my current machine, I was delighted to find that it came with a button foot that mechanically inserted the buttonhole.  While I was no longer left to keep an eye on the length and width of the stitch, I still found it tricky to keep the foot from not bunching up the fabric or going sideways.  Practice and time has solved most of these issues, and I am happier with the finished product…mostly! 🙂

Last year, I put my newly found confidence to work when I created an 1880’s blue gown which featured velvet buttons down the front.  I think I sweated through that process for a good 40 minutes!

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Despite my short comings, I still love the look of buttons in different shapes and sizes!

 Here are some of my favorite examples!

I love the graduated size of the buttons down the front of this 1860’s gown.

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I can’t imagine the time that went in to creating this front panel with all the buttons.  I can’t quite tell if the buttons are just sewn on, or there they are poking out through buttonholes.  Either way, this 1870’s gown is awesome!

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Another example of various button sizes on the bottom half of this 1880’s gown.

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I adore the brown gown with the buttons that go all the way down one side.

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While not as daunting as the above example, I love the bling these buttons add this this evening gown from the 1900’s.

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This pattern for a 1930’s dress, shows the appeal of buttons and angles.

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I love every single thing about this 1950’s dress!! Every single piece!!!

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This 1950’s wrap gets an extra helping of fun from the unique placement of buttons!

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So whether you are a buttonhole master, or, like me, working your way to apprenticeship, I hope you appreciate the appeal they can offer!

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1940’s Salmon Pink Suit

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This was such a fun outfit to make!  I mean, like super fun!  I was browsing through one of my 1940’s pattern reference books and came across a suit which featured three waist darts which had been top stitched.  I thought it was such a feminine take on a blazer jacket and went to work creating a pattern and putting it together.

Well several 1950’s musicals and one DVD of I Love Lucy Season 5 later, I was done!  I paired the suit with a light cream blouse I already owned, and put with the gored skirt….well my little heart just about palpitated out of my chest! 🙂

And while I absolutely adore this creation, I ended up creating it a little too big for myself….so I put it up for sale on my Etsy Shop for someone else to love and enjoy!

In addition, I also wanted to share with you all some lovely closeups of this very fun little project!

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Enjoy your Wednesday!

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