This is the end …

May 30, 2013

… of this blog. Acutally I have stopped posting here a long time ago, so I assume there will not be many people still reading this but to make it official I need some sort of closure here 🙂

I have a Blog in German where I am posting regularly and it was just too much to keep up two blogs at a  time.

I am still posting Scans of my vintage sewing magazines there and I will also start to add English summaries to my posts. So in the unlikely case that anybody is still following this sadly neglected blog: come over and see me here


AN: I have turned off the comments for this blog since it got flooded with Spam.


Fashion Friday No. 23

June 10, 2011

Beyer Verwandlungskleid

Click on the images for a larger view.

This is not a magazine, but a folder where the dresses are shown on the outside and the patterns on the inside. The exact date is not indicated, it’s definitely post-war since the price in indicated in Deutschmark not Reichsmark and judging from the styles I think it’s early to mid-fifties.

Paco Peralta Pattern – wow!

June 4, 2011

A few days ago I fell in love with the box pleated skirt pattern from Paco Peralta and bough it. At quite a sensible price I might add. I paid 12 Dollars and 4 Dollar shipping. Etsy charged me 9 Dollars for shipping, which I didn’t question in the slightest, but then I received an unexpected 5 Dollar refund from Paco because shipping within the EU is lower – very fair, I think.

The pattern arrived very quickly within a few days and now look at this:

The patterns is pencis-drawn by hand and labelled by hand in English and Spanish, how cool is that? And I even got an embroidered Paco Peralta label to sew into the finished garment.

I am very impressed and can’t wait to make the skirt.

Gracias Paco, estoy muy curiosa como la falda resultará 😉

Second Time’s The Charm

June 3, 2011

I did it! My very first handknit sweater since more than 20 years is finished, I am so proud of myself.

Sorry for the bad picture, I am not a very talented photgrapher.

Since the bodice of my first version was too short, I unravelled the ribbing and knit another 2.5 inches in stockinette top down, then redid the ribbing. To get an elastic edge, I used very large needles for casting off. My ribbing now is moderately stretchy, but nothing compared to the elasticity of a cast-on edge. It is sufficient to pull the sweater on comfortably though, and that’s all that counts.

Additionally, I re-sewed the side seams with a little seam allowance, for a snugger fit. I know that you don’t usually make seam allowances in fully fashioned knitwear, but the sweater was just too wide, so I improvised.

I learned a lot about knitting and fitting in this wonderful knit-along and the knitting virus has hit me big time. Thanks again, Tasha, for coaching us so masterfully throught this knitting experience.

And could there be a more perfect place to show off my vintage sweater than Palm Springs, CA? From the 1940ies onwards Palm Springs has been a favorite hideaway for movie celebrities – a stylish location for my stylish new sweater. Ok, it’s a little bit on the warm side for the desert, but temperatures today are only in the middle seventies, I’ll be ok.

The reason why I am in Palm Springs is a sewing class btw: later this week I’ll be learning how to sew a couture Chanel style jacket from the wonderful Claire Shaeffer – can’t wait to start.

Fashion Friday

June 3, 2011

Deutsche Moden-Zeitung 1931, Heft 15

Click on the images for a larger view.

Fashion Friday

May 28, 2011

Late again … sorry. Another one from the early fifties:

Frauenhilfe 1951

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Finished – not quite

May 25, 2011

Here I was so proud of myself when I made the last stitches on my Briar Rose sweater. My first handknit sweater since a long time. Of course I had to wear it right away and it turned out that it is too short. As long as I don’t move it’s ok and it looks very nice.

But as soon as I move, it slides upwards and my not so displayable belly is on display.

No, that won’t do. I know myself well enough to know that I am never going to wear the sweater like that and it would be shame to have put in that much work and then hide it in the closed, so I decided to put in a little more effort to make it wearable.

I ripped the side seams up to the sleeves and unravelled the ribbing. Have you ever cut into a handknit piece with a pair of scissors? Traumatic!

My Briar Rose is back on needles and gets 2.5 more inches of stockinette stitch before re-knitting the ribbing.

Sigh. But on the positive side this is all part of the learning curve for the next sweater.

The dawning of a new obsession

May 24, 2011

It’s all Tashas fault. If only she hadn’t launched the Briar Rose knit-along and if only she hadn’t posted such detailed and well written explanations about how to deal with a vintage knitting pattern, my life could still be peaceful.

But she just HAD to open a new can of worms, didn’t she? I stumbled over her blog only 5 or 6 weeks ago and got drawn into the Briar Rose knit-along. For years I have been saying “If only I had the patience to knit a sweater. There are so many fantastic vintage knitting patterns out there, so many ideas and possiblities, it would be just great to able to make somthing like that.”

Well, with the help of Tasha, I now can. I joined her knit-along and was really surprised how quickly my sweater progressed and how much fun it is to squeeze in a few rows of knitting whenever you do something where your hands are not occupied otherwise, like watchin TV, talking to people etc.

Knitting the Briar Rose put me in an emotional high about vintage knitting and even though is is not quite finished (but almost), I have cast on my next knitting project. It is going to be a summer cardigan titled “To set off your summer frocks” from“A Stitch in Time Vol. 1”, a great book which I only received a few days ago.

I’ll diverge a little bit from the original instructions and make it in moss stitch, my yarn is a firm, glossy cotton which looks beautiful in this stitch. And I chose the color to match my new summer dress, so I’ll have to knit pretty fast if I want to wear the combination THIS summer.

Me-Made: the most beautiful summer dress

May 23, 2011

Being German, I have been raised to believe that modesty is a virtue and that you’re not supposed to praise yourself. However, today I have to say: I am proud of myself. Isn’t this the most beautiful dress?

The fabric is a wool/cotton mix I only bough last week.

Somtimes, when I love a fabric very much I shy away from making something from it because I panic that I’ll ruin the fabric and I fret endlessly about what would be the perfect thing to make. So I am very very happy that this dress turned out so well,  it fit perfectly straigh away and it is really slimming. Alright, I lost a few pounds as well, but the dress IS a flattering cut.

I used this pattern:

I was sceptical how it would turn out with a patterned fabric, but all my fretting was for nothing in the end, everything is just perfect.

Knitting Shoulder Pads

May 22, 2011

Well, I have a little stash of off-the-shelf shoulder pads for sewing, but I am being anally retentive about authenticity here and really knit the pads for the Briar Rose. And this is how:

Step 1

I knit a square (about 5″ x 5″) in garter stitch

Step 2

I cut three triangles of decreasing size from padding material

Step 3

I made a “sandwich”

Step 4

I folded over the square diagonally. Step 5 (no pic): I closed the seams with a row of double crochets (the British ones 😉 ).