Posts Tagged ‘1930s’


This shop has been open in our town for several years, and would you believe I had not stopped in? I had driven past, but wasn’t really sure what was inside, so did not stop. It’s a block over from the post office, if you are looking, so very easy to find.


What an interesting shape for the building, you can’t miss it. I believe the owner said it was surplus WW2.

Inside, everything is an homage to the 1930s.


The shop is set up to reflect the rooms of a house, so you wander from the bedroom, to the kitchen, to the living room….


There’s sewing notions, trims, and fabrics, too. I will certainly stop back in to pick up more fabric for my 1930s quilt!


Back to the kitchen wares. I love how she used the refrigerator door racks to display the dishes!


I didn’t take a photo of all the linens, there are soooo many.


We stopped in twice, and Bailey the Collie was there relaxing behind the counter.


If you are driving through Hermiston, C&R Mercantile is right off 395, two blocks north of the post office. Very fun to visit the past!


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This year I want to enter a wider variety of items in the county fair, so I am sewing away and hope to have several more things finished by the end of July!

Doesn’t this clothespin apron reflect old-fashioned fair days?


I love the little kitty, keeping up with her own laundry. Sunny days, a light breeze, and crisp linens. Aaaaah.


You might recognize this fabric from several posts back, when I was considering using it for a quilt back. I still haven’t bought the aqua version, and I may have to buy something else entirely if I want to enter that quilt in the fair this year! But this pattern is so pretty, I had to buy the yellow. The fabric is Rosewater by Verna Mosquera for Free Spirit.


I’m happy with how this turned out, using the binding to finish the edges was genius (I saw it while looking at vintage aprons on etsy).

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I had a bee in my bonnet on Saturday about getting some sewing done. Not that I had any projects in mind, and not that I wanted to spend any money on it, so I looked through my fabric stash and pulled out some scraps and looked through my “inspiration” photos of other people’s projects and started right in.


I used this lady’s tutorial.

Did you guess the completed project?

Pincushions, or ornaments, in strawberry form.

I think I have 20 in all.


And probably more than I need to add on to gifts, but you never know. They are sort of addictive to make. Centering the design just so. Changing the colors. Getting the stuffing to just the right firmness so the strawberry is pleasing in the hand.


And then on Sunday I made this.


I’ve finished about 10 embroideries that need projects, two of which are clothes pegs related. Is the next one an apron, or another hanger like above? I haven’t decided. I looked at photos online until I saw a shape I liked, and then just winged it.

I also finished up two pot holders.



I tell you, I couldn’t figure out enough to keep me busy! Aren’t these guys adorable?

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My heart stopped for just a second, anyway. Do you ever feel like that, that if you take a breath or look away the moment might be shattered and whatever you see might not really be true?

That’s how I felt when I laid eyes on these patterns.


Can you see view A? I think this pattern is from between 1920 and 1924. Views A and B have a Grecian, art deco feel. Quick research just showed me “Standard Designer” put out a fashion magazine at the turn of the 1900s, so must have branched out into patterns. Note this one cost forty-cents — that was a lot for a pattern! Most were a dime, or fifteen-cents. I haven’t unfolded it yet (you can see the edge got all chewed off), because I suspect I’ll only be able to unfold it one time and I want to have some tracing paper on hand. The measurements are my measurements, but since ladies are so much taller today I wonder if it will really fit? We’ll find out!


I’d say this one is between 1928 and 1933. The hat, the hair, tell me it’s right around then. I’d make view 2, in the center, with the bit of frill at the neck. Having made this kind of pattern before, I know that skirt is not a breeze to put together. This pattern originally cost fifteen-cents.


This last one is a slip pattern. And it’s easy to date, since the postmark says June 6, 1932. It was mailed from San Francisco, even though the pattern company was located in Portland, OR? I wonder how that happened…? Yay, a period slip to go with the dresses! These are going to be so much fun!!!

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sewing: round purse

Remember I wanted to make a matching purse for my 1920s sun hat but didn’t know what a matching purse should look like? I was looking through dress patterns on ebay, and noticed a lady in the 1950s holding a round purse like this. I thought it possible someone in the 1920s might have had a similar purse, since it’s sort of Deco.

I probably would have been better off if I had searched for a tutorial pattern in advance (I still haven’t), but even though I wasn’t happy with the finished purse at first, the more I look at it the more I like it now.

What didn’t work was the zipper area. I used heavy pelton interfacing for the round sides so they would keep their shape, and for the the part of the side where the zipper was not. Which would have worked, I think now, if I had used a smaller zipper. I used maybe a 9-inch, so the purse where the zipper is collapses on itself because it’s the only place without stiffener.

If I had used a 6-inch zipper, there would have been less collapsing and I think the purse would have been successful. If I was to make another one (and I very well might) I would do hand-sewing in several of the areas, just because it was hard to maneuver all the roundness (especially with the stiffener) competently through the machine. Adding a lining to this design would be easy, too, with a little bit of hand sewing.

What I am happy with is how the whole strap works. It looks very nice. And it lets the purse dangle from one wrist, which is what I wanted, as a shoulder strap for me is constantly falling down and is irritating. This would carry everything without being cumbersome.

Altogether, although I hated it at first, I guess it’s not such a bad design. On a second attempt I think it would come out very prettily. Maybe I’ll work up a tutorial if it does work…. So what do you think. Could it pass for 1920s or 1930s?

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Yay, this hat pattern worked much better this time, my third attempt. It’s as cute as I knew it could be. Last time the crown had too much fabric for the head/brim opening, which I cleverly disguised hid in plain sight with a pleat at the back. I wasn’t happy. This time when I sewed the crown seam top to bottom, instead of using the suggested seam allowance, I created my own about an inch and a half from the edge, and then just cut off the excess cloth. Success! This did involve a lot of pinning in advance of the cutting the excess fabric, I did not just guess!

I also did a whole lot of ironing at each step, and if you make this hat there is definitely a learning curve. Don’t make your first attempt with your best fabric!

The pattern is a wide-brimmed cloche hat from the late 1920s, but I can see ladies in a mid 1960s Fellini film like 8-1/2 or La Dolce Vida swanning around in sheath dress while wearing this hat. What I need to figure out is if it can be adapted to 1940s and 50s wear, as well. Ladies wore sun hats then too, didn’t they? There must have been a sun in the summer, after all.

You know what, could Audrey Hepburn have been wearing a hat like this in the 1950s? Or was that the 60s? It seems like there is a famous photo out there….but I can’t quite remember.

It seems like I read somewhere that a hat like this needs to always have a black underside of the brim to create a frame for the face. The face is the focus of the composition, and the brim should not detract with wild pattern.  Good advice. You can see I have not yet added a black grosgrain ribbon band around the brim, which when I do it will hide the fact that I used the focus fabric up inside as the lining. I don’t have any ribbon right now.

This project will have an accompanying little purse of the same fabric, but all of the sudden I realize I have no idea what a small 1920s handbag made from fabric should actually look like.  I really want something like a wristlet, for keys, money, and that’s it, so it might not end up being period anyway.  Oh, and the brim is stiffened with buckram, which I had to buy on ebay because I don’t know where to find it locally. I used medium weight, and I think I might be happier with heavy. It might be too stiff, though, so next time I’d just order both so I didn’t go wrong. And just in case you missed the link above, here’s where I got the pattern for this pretty summer hat.

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Finally done! I did the hand-quilting in rows 10-inches apart, so it’s not as closely quilted as maybe it should be. I think it took about 12 hours to do that much, and that was all the time I was willing to put into it.

I used a layer of fleece instead of cotton, having found that cotton just isn’t warm enough. You need three cotton quilts to equal one fleece one, and that’s a lot of weight.

I’m just glad it’s finished and I can move on to something new. Remember that my focus here was on the fabric and using as many different 1930s prints as I could find, and not really on the overall design. I’m still learning that part, but I think I can focus on design in the next one.

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