Monday, October 11, 2010

My new obsesison!

Ahhhh. Well, I suppose everyone knew I had a thing for the 1950's (hence the aprons...) but I've never done much except look at things online and listen to a bit of music.

So, a while back I started thinking about sewing  some 1950's clothes, and started looking at vintage patterns on Etsy. Oh my God! What a selection and so DREAMY! Women absolutely looked like women back then. Most of it I could even wear I actually ordered several. These to be exact:

Butterick 8709 vintage pattern

Wouldn't this be so cute to wear even now???!

McCalls 9239 vintage pattern

Butterick 7889 vintage pattern

So I know the first and last one of the three are later 1950's, but I like them anyways. 

I also just purchased another pattern from Etsy and I can't wait for it to arrive!! Isn't it amazing?

1955 suit

I'm so excited for this pattern! It's so amazing. It should fit perfectly, though I'm thinking I might need some sort of waist cincher to get the hourglass look right...right? I'm planning on actually wearing this to work and making it in a few in different, grey, maybe some sort of brown tweedy-ish fabric...

In my excitement for all the research I've done, I decided to cut my hair. I thought I'd try and get a vintage style. My lovely aunt cut it for me, and this is the first time it's been cut so short on top since my youth. Don't get too excited,'s still long-ish at about 6 inches. We left it longer at the back, and layered all over. Not a mullet, if that's what you're thinking...

I'm still undecided if I like it or not, as I've been used to wash and go hair for the last, oh...decade. Naturally curly hair definitely makes a short cut a pain. It needs blowdrying and rolling in curlers for the right look, and hairspray. Lots and lots of hairspray. If only I had the courage to cut it to a shorter style, like Elizabeth Taylor in "A Place in the Sun" from 1951!! If you're interested in learning how to do various vintage hairstyles, check out Lisa Freemont Street on YouTube. She's amazing.

The fight with the curlers was...interesting. To make a very long story short, I figured out that sponge rollers work too well (think serious afro), and brush rollers are best with my fine hair and lack of interest in sleeping in rollers (my man was almost ready to run for cover. Not sexy at all!). To make my hair story even more "amusing", last week I decided to darken my hair to a nice chocolate brown  - to cover up my natural roots, and for a change for the winter - and ended up with almost black. Sigh. Luckily, everyone says they like it. I hope they're not just being nice! You can see a little video I put up with my hair all done up in haircombs and curls. This is as close as I can get to the "poodle" style:

I have done a fair amount of looking for foundation garments, as well, since I don't think you can get the correct vintage look without it. However....I just can't get into the seriously pointy boobs! Am I the only one? My sister lent me a vintage dead stock bra from the 50's that she bought from eBay. It fits, but scares me in how POINTY it is. Talk about lift and separate! It's like my boobs weren't even on speaking terms. So I thought I'd make a pattern from it, and take a little of the pointyness away. It didn't really work. My man was so relieved when I took it off! I guess I need to reduce a LOT more, as it was still...dangerous.  I'd heard that getting a soft cup bra (Playtex's 18 hr bra was specifically mentioned) will also give the right silhouette for those who can't afford a reproduction brassiere. So, off I headed to Wal Mart. The selection is dizzying, and depressing, at the same time. Yes, they are fairly pointy and keep your lady bits from talking to each other, however I'm apparently a smaller size than I least in Playtex's world. So small, in fact, that Playtex doesn't have a size to fit me!! Yeowch. I give up for a little bit. I'll revisit the pointy-boob issue later, once I'm desperate for the right look.

Next up, I'll need to make a crinoline and petticoat, as well as a few slips for under my new clothes I'll be making. I've also been drooling all over What Katy Did's little waist cincher. I'll need something like that if I want to get the early '50's "New Look" look right. If only I had a little more money. OK, a lot more. I never knew that the 1940's and 50's styles and pin-up looks were so popular!

Everything will be slow going on the sewing front, as I'm still in training for my current job for about two more weeks, plus I need to do some fabric shopping. Suit material isn't particularly cheap. Who knows when I'll have the time to start sewing, right? 


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