Vintage Miscellany – April 27, 2014

This is Lena Mauney, posing in what might possibly be a home sewing project.  It’s kind of hard to imagine that any manufacturer would turn out such a poorly matched up pattern, but it is possible, I suppose.  Anyway, it is a good reminder that not all clothing in the past was superior to clothing made today.  Does the fabric look like a tablecloth?  I thought so.

*   The Rosie the Riveter World War II Home Front National Historical Park in Richmond, California, has a new visitor’s center.

*   Prepare yourself to read a lot about Charles James in the coming months.  Start with this piece from The New York Times.

*  For a more historical perspective on James, read this article from The Telegraph.

*  Anna Wintour has decreed that the dress code for this year’s Met Gala is white tie.  Time to brush off Grandpa’s old top hat, fellas.

*   See how the Textile Museum in Washington, DC, stores extremely fragile archaeological textile fragments.

*   Here is an interesting article about the work of Sandra Aho, a textile and clothing conservator.

*   Not everything in San Francisco was destroyed in the 1906 earthquake, including a fabulous dress and coat.

*   Just over a year ago, an unsafe factory in Bangladesh collapsed, killing over 1000 people.  Has any progress been made in improving working conditions for workers?

*  Is ‘Made in the USA’ always the most sustainable choice?

*   And here is an extensive list of companies who make at least some of their products in the USA.


Filed under Vintage Miscellany

8 responses to “Vintage Miscellany – April 27, 2014

  1. Lots of great links! The Made in the USA one was a great read! As was the one regarding working conditions.


  2. Too bad Gioiuseppe could not afford a tailor! Looks like he was wearing a a “Bozo Clown set of tails-at very least the collar should have fit-and a clip-on tie?!!?!!!


  3. Your link(s) to ‘Made in the USA’ made an interesting read. A year ago, I began the journey to make my clothes… partly for creative reasons, and partly to not support situations like the Bangladesh tragedy. But though I make my clothes now, I find the fabrics mostly available to me, are almost all made in China. Before NAFTA, SC was still enjoying textile manufacturing, though be-it at a much smaller level than at their heyday, but I could purchase fabric remnants locally, that had been made here locally at a reasonable cost. All those fabric textile outlet stores are gone now. As an aside, KentWool, a company not listed on the USA production company list, makes the ‘World’s Best Golf Socks’ of which Bubba Watson, the current Masters champion was wearing during his recent win. These are made not only in the USA, but in my tiny little South Carolina town. Thank you for your thought-provoking list!


    • That is the reason I collect vintage fabrics to use in my sewing. Made in the USA fabrics are hard to find, but there are a few sources. Pendleton still sells wool by the yard on their website, and in Asheville, House of Fabrics usually has a good selection. I have bought cotton jersey at Mary Jo’s in Gastonia, NC that was made in NC. If I buy fabric new, I buy fabrics from Italy or Great Britian or France. And you can find polar fleece that is made from Canada.

      Thanks for the Kentwool name. I’ll have to look for their socks. I know that much of Smartwool is now made in the USA as well.


      • Thank you so much for the list of resources! I will check them out. I’ve been wanting to go to Mary Jo’s for years, but thought she was more quilting fabrics now. I do not live far from Asheville either.


        • Mary Jo’s does have a big selection of quilting cottons, but there are also home furnishing fabrics and fashion fabrics. It takes some time to see it all, and one has to be willing to look through stacked rolls, but I always seem to find something wonderful there.


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