wardrobe planning, vintage vogue style

Back to the 1960 Vogue Pattern Book….it was very fun to see that they had a wardrobe planing article in this issue! Some things don’t change. The magazine published bi-monthly, and each issue featured two patterns with recommended fabrics and accessories. Unfortunately, my issue is only the second installment, so we don’t know what the completed wardrobe looked like.

The wardrobe is built around three neutral colors – white, beige, and black. The first two patterns were a suit and a more casual full skirt and blouse combo. The suit’s camisole was white silk linen. The blouse (on the right) was made in a brown silk check.

This month, they added another full skirt (the fullness is from unpressed pleats) in brown linen (so it can also be worn with the blouse from the last issue). The white dolman-sleeve top, with vertical darts for fitting, was also made in linen. This is the ensemble on the left in the illustration.

The outfit on the right was made for evening. The dress is sleeveless with a v-neckline, and the skirt has less volume. The back of the dress is not shown, but they describe it as having a very deep v, too. It was made in beige shantung. The bolero was made in paprika red, with a toggle-like closure.

They also combined the cami from the first month with the brown linen skirt and the paprika bolero.

Here are the combinations:

1. Suit: skirt, jacket, cami

2. Co-ordinating blouse and skirt

3. Dolman top with skirt #2

4. Evening dress

5. Evening dress with bolero

6. Skirt #2 with blouse

7. Skirt #2 with cami and bolero

They show seven combinations from 9 pieces. I think when we design our SWAPS and 6-PAKs, we ask our pieces to work a little harder! I would love to know what the next 10 patterns were, but alas…..

They do accord lots of attention to the accessories, though….and this is where most of the color is coming in. Accessories are all in brights or in the red/orange family.

They are: bright paisley belt, Orange polka-dot sash, Orange shantung clutch, tangerine sandals, paprika t-straps.

Speaking of 6-PAKs, I think I’m going to attempt a fall/winter one. Discussion at Stitcher’s Guild can be found here.  I’ve gotten as far as discarding one color scheme and pulling fabrics for a second one. Here’s what’s looking promising….

from left to right….japanese cotton (jacket), teeny-check silk noil (jacket), steel blue silk (top), dark gray ponte knit (tank), textured gray poly (pants), indigo denim shot with tan threads (pants, already made).  This gives a pretty good mix of fun fabrics with basics. These wardrobes are fantastic ways to get yourself a bunch of basics that all work together and really work hard for you, but basics alone get pretty boring to sew.

I haven’t picked all my patterns yet…there’s lots of time before fall arrives, and there’s no difference in my closet between fall and winter, so I can take my time.


more vintage…

Continuation of the previous post…

The other thing in this old Vogue Pattern Book that was remarkable was the hats. I am old enough to have a good recall of 1960, and I don’t remember so many hats. But maybe they were more common for the ladies who lunch.

In fact, the hats were important enough that they had little detail shots with details on the designer and also noting the color if the photo was black and white.

In case you can’t read the caption: “…Christian Dior’s rough-textured beehive straw cloche, towering high at the crown, and deeply brimmed. Forecastin the uninhibited color range of this season’s hats: the brilliant torquoise brim, the vivid orange crown.: Yow. I’m surprised she didn’t need shades.

Notice all the contrast trim? There was lots of that throughout the magazine as well.

And there’s this….showing the pattern magazine love with their initials emblazoned on your chest…

vintage vogue

Vintage styles are so fun to look at. If you were alive when the fashion was current, it’s a nice nostalgic trip to the past. If the syles are really before your time, you get a little hint of what it was like to live back then, imagining yourself moving around in the clothes. The styles also give you an idea of what characteristics were valued at the time….sweetness? sophistication? rebelliousness?

I could not believe my eyes when I found three old Vogue pattern magazines on the vintage rack at Half Price Books – and I guess the staff figured no one would be interested in pattern magazines, because they were priced way lower than the Good Housekeepings, Lifes, and Looks. Goody for me!

The oldest one is the April-May issue from 1960. Back then, they billed themselves as Vogue Pattern Book. The cover style, a loose belted dolman-sleeved dress, would be current enough today. But check out the waist-to-hip ratio. That foundational shape plus the make up and the hair really peg this as a development of the styles of the 50s.

One of the overarching mannerisms that really struck me was the prevalance of a certain posture adopted by many of the models. This hips-forward slouch appeared throughout the magazine.

In photographs…

In the illustrations…

And evidently the younguns were in training, too. “That’s right, darling. Always lead with your pelvis, and keep your eyes down.”

I was never trained this way, but then Vogue did not figure into our household in any form. Besides, we were a military family, and standing up straight was encouraged. I also find it amusing that teenagers are supposed to enjoy mother-daughter outfits. I suspect that’s why this particular feature was illustrated. They could not find actual live teenagers that would consent to be photographed as clones of “mother”. Here’s another example with young girls in that pelvic-thrust pose that just looks inappropriate to me. Girls #1 and #4…

It strikes me that the girls in this magazine are dressed as youthful versions of mature women, while today it at least seems like clothes for women are adaptations of the styles of the young.

I am told I am running late…more later…