Vintage Miscellany – June 8, 2014

You are looking at the perfect canoeing ensemble.  The wide legged pants give it a touch of the nautical, but not so much that one would forget the vessel is a canoe and not a schooner.  I love her flat canvas shoes and the scarf tied as a bandeau.  Be sure to notice the zipper closure on the top.  It’s a fairly early usage of a zipper in clothing.

And on to the news…

*   This week the Prince of Wales will be conducting experiments with fire, wool and synthetic fabrics in the garden at Clarence House.

*   Last week a 1930 McCall sewing pattern sold on ebay for $831.  Worth it?

*  There is a post on the FIDM blog that I found to be interesting.  It is about a line of fabrics manufactured by H.R. Mallinson & Company in 1928 – prints based on the “Playgrounds of the World.”

*   For those of you in Ontario, the Fashion History Museum has a new exhibition, Street Style, at The Waterloo Regional Museum.

*   McCall’s sewing patterns will be starting a new line based on patterns from the past.  They are calling it “McCall’s Archive Collection”.

*   In the category of news that should excite me but does not, The Biltmore House in Asheville has announced that they will have a display of costumes from Downton Abbey this winter.  I assume this is the same exhibition that is now at Winterthur in Delaware.  I’m not excited because the costumes will be scattered throughout the house, and to see them one must buy an admission ticket.  Prices start at $44 for tickets bought over a week in advance.

The Biltmore Company has been quick to draw parallels between themselves and Downton, hoping to capitalize of the popularity of the program.  When the show is airing there are regular local newspaper articles comparing the Vanderbilts to the Crawleys, including how they were originally supposed to be on the Titanic, how the daughter was married to a Brit, how they lived a lavish lifestyle.  No reports about strange men dying in the daughter’s bed, or babies surrendered to a local farmer though.

*   Critic Suzy Menkes has issued a call for the return to niceness.  You need to read it and nod in agreement, and then think about why it is that people can be so nasty on the internet.


Filed under Vintage Miscellany

11 responses to “Vintage Miscellany – June 8, 2014

  1. When is the photo from? The ’30s? (she guesses uneducatedly)


  2. Jeez, and I thought I’d overpaid for the 30s Schiaparelli pattern I found! I think that 30s pattern was overpriced as there are a lot of similar originals and repros available.


  3. LOVE the photo! the entire outfit is 30’s(i think) Lombard wore a designer version in a movie-the pants have re-emerged in designer collections-in early/mid 70’s Holly Harp designed them in silk crepe-with beautiful full crop-jackets-“evening pj’s- Margo kidder purchased them from me (my boutique in Key West) in petal pink and wore them on Jonny Carsen-Tonight Show- they were copied in srortswear with sweater tops(as in photo)…the Holly Harp versions were really Luxe-she did them with matching camisole-worn under the jackets-very flowing-sexy-even!..and often the head wrap to match-the girls said they were very comfortable-great for dinner-light and packable /easy travel for dressy evening wear…remember-wonderful/crazy Carson going around the desk after her!…Ralph lauren did them as well..


  4. Totally agree with you Lizzie! Someone requires a lesson in social history re: Vanderbilts vs Crawleys! there is nothing to compare…as for the exibit…???!!!- Delaware/Duponts-or NC-Vanderbilts-one has nothing to do with the other – except -raising money…the clothes may (perhaps) cross in period only-if they were of-the-period original family clothes…that might be worth the admission-!!!??? – very confusing…


    • Interesting thoughts. Several years ago the Biltmore Company realized that clothing exhibits were becoming increasingly popular with the public so they decided to add some mannequins throughout the house showing clothing from 1895-1900. The problem was that there were few things left from that time period left in the house, so they set out to buy period correct clothing for the time period of the house.

      Nothing wrong with that, but I took a tour soon after the clothing was installed as part of a clothing symposium I was attending. Our tour guide explained that the clothes were bought at auction and had no connection to the house, but others taking similar tours were not told. And unless a visitor takes a guided tour, which costs extra, there is nothing to indicate that the clothes are not original to the house.


  5. Christina

    I’ll make a totally wild guess and say that the McCall dress pattern was probably bought by McCall’s for their archive collection 🙂


  6. I would totally wear that outfit canoeing. The pants look both cool and great for sun/bug protection. Totally fabulous.

    I’m no royalist, but I admit I kind of love Charles’ Bonfire of Synthetics!


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