Words to stitch and live by. Via.
Fabric Swatch Friday: Mermaids
Retro novelty print fabric with mermaids and fishes; via The Dream Merchants II
Yes We Can! Rosie The Riveter Fashions
Proof that this look was in fashion for women before there was an American home front and a The War Advertising Council’s Women in War Jobs campaign with Rosie the Riveter.
Scanned from New Fashions For You & Your Home, Spring Summer 1940, published by Singer Sewing Machine Company (I’ve listed it at eBay), this page features patterns by Du Barry.
More scans from this vintage publication at my Tumblr.
Because There’s Nothing More Shameful For A Boy Than Looking Like A Girl
One of the “367 prize winning household hints” Hint Hunt booklet (the better ones will be found at my vintage home ec site, Things Your Grandmother Knew), this tip “for mothers only” advises that “to cure boys of the habit of not keeping shirttails tucked in, sew an edging of lace around the bottom of the lad’s shirt.”
Whatjamacallit Wednesday: Sewing Hat For A Rainy Day
I’m a dork. I know it, and now you’ll know it too.
When I spotted the cover of this 1975 Simplicity sewing book — “updated!” — I had to have it.
I had to have it because I actually thought that they’d have instructions for how to make the hat. Yes, I thought that 1) the kitschy fisherman’s hat adorned with pincushion (with pins, no less), scissors, and measuring tape-turned-bow, would be awesome to wear going to rummage sales on those rainy days, and that B) a book of sewing instructions would actually include instructions for creating the item featured on the cover.
Now you might agree that I’m just plain silly for the first thing; but don’t you think a person ought to expect the latter? But no. Apparently Simplicity thinks making the hat is obvious enough. Which I suppose is better than being like that super-annoying and frustrating Science Channel show, How It’s Made, which informs you that markers are made by putting felt into a plastic tube and inserting ink into the absorbent felt. A Duh. That’s not how something is made, that’s how something is assembled from already made parts.
But my point is, while I can buy a bright yellow rain hat and all the sewing supplies, I have no idea how to attach said sewing supplies without ending up having to wear a pirate’s eye patch — and telling people that I was blinded by my own lack of sewing skill, causing a scissors to fall from my kitschy hat & skewer my eyeball.
None of this, however, dampens my desire for such a hat. Sew So, if you know how to make such a hat — that is safe enough to wear — please do tell.
Fabric Swatch Friday: Times Two
I couldn’t choose just one fabric to show you today, so I’m showing you two. (Plus, this sort of makes up for skipping Fabric Swatch Friday last week.) When you see them both, I think you’ll see why I couldn’t pick just one…
First, this vintage feedsack with an Asian novelty print:
Second, this retro rock & roll print of girls playing guitars and listening to records:
Fabric Swatch Fridays Is Becoming A Circus
I’d love me some Braemore Le Cirque Sky curtains — but an apron is more likely.
Fabric Swatch Friday: Fashion Girls
Fashion Girls fabric, for those who can’t wear enough fashion.
Fabric Swatch Friday: As Seen On Me
Sew Bettie’s amazing Retro TV Fabric twists “As Seen On TV” into something new — yet retro. Can you dig it?
Sit On A Pin-Up
I should probably save this for Fabric Swatch Friday, but I was too excited to tell you that Samantha Hahn made this fabric for a chair:
Yes, I said “made this fabric,” because once she designed this pattern, based on Ava Gardner, Claudette Colbert and some others (she calls it of “starlet harlots“), Samantha used Spoonflower to have her custom fabric printed on demand.
Yeah, you heard that right; you can create your own fabric pattern and then have Spoonflower print it — on actual fabric — for you. Wowza.
Anyway, once your blown mind settles down, click here if you want to see Samantha’s pin-up chair (and get a testimonial about Spoonflower too).
Fabric Swatch Friday Continues Along Swimmingly
Just two words: Mermaid fabric!
Fabric Swatch Fridays Bring Peace, Man
Because I shop for fabric far more often than I use it, Fabric Swatch Fridays are born; hopefully this will bring about more peace in our house. To celebrate, this Peace Sign fabric by Alexander Henry — fabulously red & retro.
Don’t Expect To Find Help Making That Penis Quilt At Jo-Ann Fabrics
Apparently, the March/April issue of Quilter’s Home magazine was “too hot” for Jo-Ann Fabric and Crafts — at least that’s what they told the distributor for the magazine when they refused to carry the “controversial” issue in their chain of stores. This after editor/owner Mark Lipinski had paid $2,500 to wrap some 45,000 copies in plastic like a porno mag.
Why so much fuss about a quilting magazine? Because the publication dared to include Shocking Quilts, an article by Jake Finc.
The shocking quilts include Gwendolyn Magree’s Southern Heritage/Southern Shame, a quilted response to Mississippi’s refusal to remove the confederate flag from the state flag (which shows lynching), and Mary Beth Bellah’s Helping Hands, which is apparently a cheeky representation of erectile dysfunction — complete with a hand and little blue “pills” made of fabric, a couple of which have actual penises printed on them.
These quilts are the very definition of art — not just something made by hand, but unique works exploring issues of our society. You remember art, don’t you? It’s one of the ways people communicate & exchange ideas, start dialogs. Well, Jo-Ann will have none of that.
Please confine your creativity to the kits provided.
Oh, bother. I thought that with Bush banished from the White House, censorship would move back into the hands of individual consumers. You remember them, right? People who choose to buy — or not to buy — based on their own particular set of values.
But Jo-Ann feels the need to protect us from ideas & creativity.
…Hmmmm… Doesn’t that seem to be against the mission of an arts & crafts retailer?
Let’s see. This is what the company has to say for itself:
Today, Jo-Ann Stores, Inc. is a leading national specialty retailer of crafting, decorating, and sewing products-a “Create-It-Yourself” Superstore. We sell fashion and decorator fabrics, related notions, patterns, crafts, seasonal products and other merchandise. We sell the components to which our customers add their own talent and time to make fun and exciting projects. We are the only fabric and craft retailer that offers creative people everything they need-the products, the assistance, and the inspiration-to fulfill their creative dreams.
So what if my dreams include penis-print fabrics? What if my exciting project explores racial history, or otherwise doesn’t share your CEO’s political philosophies or religious leanings?
I guess then I’d need to shop elsewhere.
I could just let that irony be the last nail in their coffin, let the marketplace speak & pronounce the chain dead for such a stupid thing — because I and millions like me won’t shop there anymore. I personally have a Hobby Lobby and a Michael’s — both well-stocked. As well as an internet full of other options. I urge all readers to use any of them rather than Jo-Ann Fabric & Craft Stores.
But I don’t think that’s enough. I think we all need to support Lipinski and Quilter’s Home, let them know that we appreciate the coverage & support of creative artists & atypical projects — and the best way to do that is to subscribe. Yes, even if you don’t personally quilt; give it as a gift.
Or better yet, keep the mag & dare to be inspired to make your own radical quilts.