Delineator, December, 1931

This is one of my all time favorite magazine covers.  And I do think it is interesting that this wonderful illustration was on a magazine targeted toward the average woman who sewed her own clothes, rather than on a magazine geared toward the high fashion set.

The Delineator was published by the Butterick Pattern people, and each month it featured the latest sewing and embroidery patterns along with short stories, recipes and articles on home decorating.  The magazine was very popular through the 1920s, but in the 30s they took a new direction, featuring less fashion and more articles.  Unfortunately, the magazine did not survive.  In 1937 in was sold to Hearst, who combined it with their Pictorial Review.  

Illustrator: Dynevor Rhys

Copyright:  Hearst Corporation


Filed under Fashion Magazines

16 responses to “Delineator, December, 1931

  1. Caryn

    This is such an elegant, chic illustration. Simply gazing at it makes me feel sophisticated and lithe, which is far from the truth.

    Judging by the date on the cover, I wonder if the editors were following the example of Hollywood at the time. Most Hollywood movies were showing high-end glamor and a glimpse at the lives of ultra-rich characters, which gave the average woman a moment to forget her struggles during the Great Depression.

    It also makes me think that Delineator’s editors might have been making a statement that women were all the same at Christmas, whether they were wearing ermine and silk while dressing a modern white tree with haughty stature or wearing lovely cotton while demurely dressing the traditional fur tree.


  2. That’s one of my favorite magazine covers too! I’ve always wanted a large poster-print of it to put up (in place of one of my year-round art deco posters) just for Christmas time.

    I never knew it was published by the Butterick Pattern people – no wonder I’ve always loved it!


  3. I can see why it’s a favorite; it is divine!! is it still attached the magazine? or is it a separate (frame-able?) sheet? Love it, Lizzie!! just LOVE it!


  4. Fashion Witness

    I have been visiting a huge treasure trove of bound Delineator magazines in storage at my local library — including this one. The fashion articles — i.e., the featured Butterick patterns for the month — include the captions “The New Old-Fashioned Fashions” and “The Bustle Returns, Greatly Changed.” They refer to evening gowns like the red one on the cover, which does have a lot of back interest! White, artificial Christmas trees were still new, and were featured in an article in the December 1930 issue. Let’s raise a glass of Holiday Cheer to the wonderful Vintage Traveler!


  5. So elegant! I’m swooning! Merry Christmas Lizzie. 🙂 xx


  6. John

    Terrific cover – thanks for posting. Cover of Delineator January 1905 is the woman’s profile as the first edition of Mongomery’s book ‘Anne of Green Gables’. This was drawn by George Gibbs typical of the famous ‘Gibson’s Girls’ style then. Ms Mongomery would later write quite a few stories for the Delineator in the 1920s. My glass is raised in toast to the Vintage Traveler!


  7. ourdailydress

    That is such a lovely cover. It has such a sweetness and serenity that I don’t usually associate with Christmas.


  8. Teresa

    Absolutely stunning!


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