All posts filed under: Textiles & Costume

Girls Attire for May 1906 from the Girl’s Own Paper

I’ve finally managed to find the time to scan all the fashion pages from my Girl’s Own Papers from 1905-07, and I’ll be posting them over the coming months (themed to the correct month, of course!). I found the pages at a car boot sale in Napier during Art Deco weekend.  Sadly, they were loose papers, and the magazines are incomplete.  I’ve done my best to sort them based on the months given, and the page numbers, and to date them, but I’m not always 100% sure I’ve got the year correct. I’m reasonably sure today’s pages are from 1906, thanks to some help from the incomparable Daniel in definitively dating a page I shared a few years back to March 1906.  The page numbers suggest these two pages are from the same year (though those also repeated on an annual basis, so these may be from 1905!). These images are as large as my blog format will support, so hopefully you can read them. Some delightful excerpts: The white cloths and velvets and other perishable materials …

1917 combinations and petti-slips thedreamstress.com

Combination-a-thon, or how I came to have more wearable combinations than anyone else alive in 2017…

When I was planning my wardrobe for the Fortnight in 1916 I knew I needed lots of combinations to wear under corsets: enough to have a reasonable week’s wearing before I did laundry. I was using Wearing History’s fantastic 1917 combination pattern.  Mid-1910s combinations are serious fabric hogs,  so I rummaged around in my stack of vintage sheets, and unearthed half-a-dozen of the thinnest and most seamed. On my first round of cutting I cut out three, carefully folded them all in one parcel, and set them aside for sewing. (who can guess where this is going?) The next night I cut out another 4, which would give me 8 in total (I already had a completed one): near the upper end of what my research suggested was a normal amount of first-layer undergarments for a middle class woman to have in any single season. A few days later I sat down to sew all the combinations. My first three?  Nowhere to be found!  Determined searching and re-organising failed to unearth them, so I persevered with …

A 1920s dress kit thedreamstress.com

A 1920s dress kit

Last week Mr D & I went down to Nelson to celebrate Thanksgiving with his parents (who have adopted it since I moved to NZ, to help me feel at home, because it’s my favourite holiday, and because they are lovely). It’s always wonderful to go down to Nelson, but it was particularly good to get away after the upset in Wellington after the earthquakes.  Ironically, we were going closer to the epicenter, but Nelson has had much less damage than Wellington (they say 11% of the city centre is shut down).  Being there felt like escaping, and just helped reset my equilibrium. My wonderful mother-in-law helped with the escape feel by taking my antique shopping – where I promptly found the most exciting thing I’ve ever found at an op-shop. I was digging through a chest of fabric (nothing interesting) when I noticed something that looked a bit like a fashion plate in a cabinet next to me. Curious, I pulled it out.  It was a pretty 1920s dress, with some odd notes.  And then I …