The Wannabe Craftster

The Highs and Lows of a Fashionista and Craftster Wannabe

My Current Vintage Obsession


My personal style could never be described as “Jackie O”.  My hair tends to look windblown at best, and my dressy clothes are, these days, gathering dust in my closet.   Park days, piano lessons, gymnastics lessons, and speech therapy sessions don’t usually demand pumps and a slip.  More likely, you’ll see me in jeans or yoga pants with some oversized shirt.  Glamorous!   My mother is tall with narrow shoulders and a slim face and wears the styles I never could–full skirts, fussy tops, vests.   She could never understand  why her 5’1″ daughter with the big, full face and broad shoulders couldn’t float through the room in a circle skirt like June Cleaver.   Yet, she couldn’t bring herself to tolerate the clothes I wanted to wear–empire waist dresses, wrap sweaters, and straight skirts.  There was a compromise here and there, but she could be a bit of a bully about it all.  The one thing she couldn’t stand was the one thing she could do nothing about–my hair.  She would have loved it had I adopted a Grace Kelly do, but it just wasn’t in the cards.  Classic good looks were NOT mine, and my style, though stifled for many years directly by my well-meaning mother and even after by my desire to please her as an adult, was actually more boho.  You could read in her eyes the one thing she was thinking but wouldn’t say–TACKY!

So, at this stage of the game, why am I obsessed with 60s suits?   (I’m a 70s girl!) Is it the desperate need to  break out of my rut?  Could the yoga pants and oversized t-shirts of my husband’s finally have caused some sort of meltdown?  Am I secretly planning to shock the yoga pants off everyone else?  Am I just missing my mom and wanting to please her?

One extremely appealing characteristic of these suits is how streamlined they are.   Not many bells and whistles here.  The extravagance would be in the choice of fabric and in lining.  No embroidery, no ruffles, no crochet and NO SHOULDER PADS!  I used to rip them out of my clothes, even in the 80s.  Those of us with broad shoulders don’t need them!  Never did!

Something else has me hypnotized, though.  When one lays off the distracting embellishments, one gives oneself the opportunity to LAY ON THE JEWELRY!!!!  Back up, people!  I’ll need some room for the next post!

Advertisements

October 31, 2008 Posted by | inspiration, jewelry, patterns, vintage | , , , , | 3 Comments

Ooh La la!!!!

My sister had this pattern back in the day.  I thought it was the sexiest thing I’d ever seen and wanted it for myself.  You can find this at http://www.lanetzliving.net/

October 10, 2008 Posted by | inspiration, patterns, sew, sister, vintage | , , , , , | 2 Comments

Find of the Day

I am not even sure what to say about this.  The name of these unfortunate sandals….  I don’t allow anyone to say it near me (different spelling), because it just creeps me out.  This, however, had to be shared.  Found it while surfing for 70s fashions.

September 28, 2008 Posted by | 70s, vintage | , , , , | 4 Comments

SCORE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

September 27, 2008 Posted by | Designer clothes, patterns, sew, thrifting, vintage | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Claire McCardell

Inspired by this post at Dress A Day, I began doing a little research on Claire McCardell.

http://www.dressaday.com/2008/06/meet-our-advertisers-3-marge-at-born.html

I must confess, I’d never heard of her. What a shame. You’ll think so too when you read this….

http://www.squidoo.com/clairemccardell

Scroll down and don’t miss the article at TIME magazine. Incredible that even in the world of fashion, women don’t get proper credit. We should all know this woman’s name, because like as not, many of us are wearing clothes that she inspired. I never got a real idea of what American Sportswear was all about UNTIL I read about its history and the major role Claire McCardell played.

Claire McCardell

http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/amsp/ho_1997.193.2.htm

June 25, 2008 Posted by | Designer clothes, inspiration, vintage | , , , , , | 2 Comments

Little Mister’s Shorts

In all his glory………………………

He was really proud.  These are a little big on him, but I suspect he’ll have some growing time over the summer and they’ll fit perfectly by fall, which is as good as summer here in Austin.

I used this pattern…..

It was SUPER-easy.  Only 2 pieces if I recall correctly.  Yes, I know this is a pajama pattern, but I wasn’t happy with the other patterns for little boys that I found.   And let me say here and now, there are almost NO patterns for boys out there.

Pattern was bought at Lanetz.   Lady who runs THAT place is wonderfully nice, which is a huge plus in my book.

http://www.lanetzliving.net/

June 24, 2008 Posted by | Austin, Finished Products, patterns, sew, vintage | , , , | 2 Comments

Fixing Sissie’s Lunch

This doesn’t look exactly like the lunchbox Sissie used to carry when she was a teenager, but it’s the best picture I could find on the net. You’d better believe I wanted one just like it. Or better yet, I wanted Sissie’s. Everything she did was cool, I thought. She went to camp with a funky little suitcase, which I coveted, of course. She had a funky seventies pillowcase, which I wanted. And she got to go to school and carry her lunch in this darling little case in my favorite color—red!

This is the story of how my imagination compromised Sissie’s dignity.

One morning, as Sissie was preparing to go to school, I was inspired to remove her lunch from the case and pack it F-U-L-L of…what else? My underwear!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I was pretending to take a trip, and it was made all the more real, because I was in reality riding along in our VW “Bug” in the backseat as my daddy drove Sissie to school.

I watched (having forgotten about my morning play as easily as children tend to do) as Sissie stepped out of the car, began walking toward the school which was, of course, SWIMMING with teenagers when…..oh what happened? That lunchbox popped open like a jack-in-the-box and out flew panties EVERYWHERE!

All I remember after that was teenagers laughing and pointing as Sissie frantically gathered my underwear off the road and stuffed it back in the lunchbox.

I’m amazed she still speaks to me, but I think she blocked this out of her memory. She probably comforts herself by believing I dreamed this. Or, as she often says, after raising children, she can’t BE embarrassed anymore.

If you like the lunchbox, head on over to Ebay. It’s a classic, anyway. Just don’t stuff it full of underwear.

http://stores.ebay.com/F-C-Inc

June 13, 2008 Posted by | inspiration, sister, Uncategorized, vintage | , , , | 4 Comments

Maggie Gay

While many of us pursue elegance in every aspect of our lives, others seem to be born with it. Case in Point–Margie Gay. For those of you who don’t know, Margie Gay was a little girl who starred in Walt Disney’s shorts called the Alice Comedies between 1923 and 1927. Margie was not the first Alice, but I did find a couple of pictures of her in one of ds’s library books this week.

Margie Gay with Walt Disney

What a relaxed pose, and note the hat.

Margie Gay

A beautiful example of twenties fashion for children. The grace with which this child wears a hat amazes me. Unfortunately, there was very little real information and few pictures, if any, of Margie Gay on the net. The big question I had was whether or not she would show as much poise in moving pictures. It’s quite hard to tell, since we would consider those shorts primitive, compared to the clarity we’re used to today, even from our own pocket cameras, but as with all things twenties, the films are fascinating to watch. Always makes me wonder if my grandparents may have seen the same cartoon/movie/etc and what they may have thought about it. Then, I think about the fashions and who in my family may have worn clothes similar. I have a gorgeous picture around here somewhere of my aunt in her twenties finery. I’ll have to post that soon. Right now, I think this blog will be solely dedicated to Margie Gay. More of my favorite decade later.

And joy of joys, I found another, and certainly BETTER, blog post about the Alice Comedies. ENJOY!!!!!

http://keepswinging.blogspot.com/2007/02/alice-comedies.html

May 28, 2008 Posted by | inspiration, The Twenties, Uncategorized, vintage | , , , , , | 6 Comments

Paper Crafts

One of my most treasured thriftshop finds of all time is this elementary school art textbook, perfect for homeschooling. Its copyright is 1961 and boasts a ton of black-and-white pictures. When I was much younger most photographs in most books were b&w. Southern Living had a mix, which really limited planning a landscape design, in my opinion. But, now that I can get multiple color pics of anything I desire, pretty much, thanks to the Net, I find that the lack of color helps me to keep my mind open. And, well, I need all the help I can get in that department. Open and functioning–my goal.

I especially loved this little blast from the past. Now that everyone is “going green,” words like “litterbug” are being cast aside. This was the extent of my knowledge (way back when) of harm being done to the environment. It’s what made the American Indian in the commercial cry, remember? I felt serious guilt every time I saw that, but in reality, the thought of throwing garbage on the ground was equal to kicking one’s grandmother in the shin. Unthinkable. At the same time, everyone knew the dump was an acceptable place to put your garbage. Not us. We burned ours. Incredible, isn’t it?

Some of the rest of these not only give me a way to do some penance but also spend some time with the boys IF they’ll sit still. Not a bad way to recycle some paper, I don’t think.

Now, the next one just makes me wish I had found this textbook back when my husband and I were dating and all things weird and somewhat antiquated scored big points for the finder. I would have been such a hit if I had presented them with this little pic for an album cover or a flyer.

Feast your eyes….

May 22, 2008 Posted by | thrifting, Uncategorized, vintage | , , , | 3 Comments

Bethany Lutheran Church Garage Sale

I’m so very, very glad the weather wasn’t bad for the Bethany Lutheran Church Garage Sale. I’m not sure how long they’ve had this planned, but I believe it was entered into my Palm Pilot last month. Hopefully, they raised a great deal of money. What a nice bunch of folks. And, boy did we have fun!

Sign at Bethany Lutheran Church

I took my 9yo son with me, because….well, I just like to, and secondly, he’s a better bargain hunter than I am. I explained to him that there were advantages to showing up late (sellers don’t want to pack up a lot of stuff and are willing to let it go, IF it will go, at a really, really good price) and advantages of showing up early (the best stuff often goes first). Feast your eyes on the find of the day. Yes, he actually found a scooter for sale! He was on cloud nine and later declared it to be the best day of his life.

Garage Sale Gold

I didn’t do too shabby, either. I was really pleased with my lovely juice glasses and mugs. And, I got them from the nicest lady named Debbie who loves to paint. She had many items for sale that would have fit PERFECTLY into the theme for my younger son’s room—retro cowboys. Oh, how I was tempted! But, I suspect that there will be a theme change soon, especially if we move. Younger son has turned out to be more of an wombat than a cowboy. Debbie also told me about a site online that might help me develop my technique (read—“overcome disability”) for painting terra cotta pots. In particular, we talked about painting specifically for herbs. As much as I love and use herbs, I STILL often forget what is what once those seeds start sprouting. More of THAT in another post.

Juice Glasses

Mugs

Here is some of Debbie’s handiwork. I would have loved to have brought this home, but we really have no room left, and my older son is too big for it. Sooooo cute, though.

Table and Chairs

Other lovely finds for someone. Can you believe it? A Schwinn bicycle built for two!!!!!!!

Shwinn bicycle built for two

Chair

And who can resist donuts and these pretty faces? Hmmmmm?

Donuts

April 28, 2008 Posted by | "garage sale", Austin, glassware, thrifting, Uncategorized, vintage | , , , , | 6 Comments