Saturday, May 16, 2009

The Resurrection: As I Tiptoe Back into my Blog...

...I hope that I'm not in for a stoning!

Firstly, I must say that I feel bad, exceptionally bad, that I've not posted here in almost a year! I don't want to make excuses, but here's my best shot at one:

After we moved in our new house last June, I got a bit overwhelmed. Shortly after we were in, I had some dear friends come in from New Jersey for a visit. I was THRILLED, and dropped sewing to finish unpacking and get ready for my first guests in our new home.

THEN, a week later, we headed out to vacation in Portland.

THEN, five days later, the boys started at their new school.

THEN, we became Cub Scout den leaders because nobody else would do it.

THEN, my little brother came for a five day visit.

THEN, the day after he left, my mother-in-law from England came in for a two week visit.

THEN, it was Halloween (a big deal in my house).

THEN, I was dead from said mother-in-law visit. By the time I recovered, it was time for my family and our neighbors to come over for Thanksgiving.

THEN, it was the Christmas and holiday season... by the time the New Year came and went, I didn't know what hit me and I lost complete momentum for my blog. I was sewing in between all of this, and on a few occasions, started to write a post. But I always felt rushed and that my writing was not well done, so I scrapped it and never posted.

I'm so sorry...

BUT, I now feel that life's pace has found itself nearly a year on... so I hope that you'll still stick around with me. I promise I won't go anywhere this time.

So to kick off The Resurrection, I thought I'd post about a new endeavor of mine: Auctions.

Auctions are a great place to hang out if you are a vintage/antique/retro junkie like me (and my husband). Earlier this month, we went to one and to my delight, I picked up over 300 vintage patterns! Most were ladies' dresses from the 30's - 80's, plus a vast batch of children's from the 50's. There were also gadgets like a 1940's Singer Buttonholer. The whole shebang cost $15.50.

It's amazing what you can tell from a person's life just from their sewing stash. This lady was married in the 40's and originally lived in Wisconsin. Her oldest 40's mail order patterns were addressed to her there. While the haul didn't include any super glam ball gowns, there are many smart suits and dresses. She definitely was well dressed.

She moved to central Illinois by the early 50's and that's the timeframe of her maternity and baby/toddler patterns. She had at least one each, a boy and girl, as there are children's patterns for both. Of course, there are FAR more girl's patterns than boy's! But she sewed for them a LOT as there are many, many children's patterns. There are also doll clothes patterns.

Most of the mid 60's - 70's patterns are a larger bust size than the 40's and 50's patterns, about the time her daughter(s) would have been teenagers/young women. They are also the youthful, hip styles from that time.

In amongst the sewing gadgets and supplies, were her husband's business cards and stationery on which she wrote notes and equated alterations/yardages. He was a local insurance broker.

I was captivated by this haul. The first day I had it home, I mulled through it for hours and hours. It really captured a small snapshot of a woman and her family's life.

I've begun taking pictures and have uploaded the first 57, from the late 50's through the early 60's. I've included a link to my photobucket album and have uploaded a few of my favorites.

On another humble note: Thanks to everybody who voted for me in PR's Vintage Pattern Contest. I was both surprised and thrilled to win First Place, given the amount of talent shown in the contest. The votes coming from my fellow sewers means a great deal to me indeed!

Oh, and that knit dress in my last post??? It was a big, fat WADDER!!! I rushed sewing when there was so much to do, that it never turned out! At least I know how to call a wadder and move on!


2BSewing: said...

Welcome back! Great find on those vintage patterns. No need to tiptoe back. ;)

Cosmo said...

There are not words to describe the envy I feel over your haul. Beautiful!

Cindy said...

Welcome back! Congratulations on the Vintage contest--it was a beautiful dress. I, also, submitted a dress but not nearly as wonderful as your dress! I am just beginnning the vintage bug. Wow is it catchy. Your pattern find is like finding treasure. I look forward to reading your blog!

Linda said...

Welcome back. I am envious of the vintage patterns!

Bessie B. said...

Totally jealous of your amazing pattern treasure!!! Patterns really do hold so many memories and stories. I think that's why most older women hold on to the until the last. They are a lot like old letters and photographs!
Your dresses are absolutely beautiful. Look forward to reading your blog and being inspired! :D

Lavon said...

Hello, This is my first visit to your blog and since it has be resurrected I will keep checking it out.

retroliving said...

They are all stunning!

kathleen said...

ooh, I love the third one down, I have ideas to make that into a blouse.

Marie-Noƫlle said...

You are so lucky
I am envious I know I shoud not, but still
Enjoy your treasure trove

jeanielynn said...

So good to have you in the sewing guild. You have wonderful stuff on your blog. jeanielynn