9 Jul 2010

off on a camping holiday at Lake St Clair  around 1965/66

Went to sit with Dad today while Mum went out and I finally remembered to take my camera with me to capture her beautiful old dresses.

Now you have to remember that the dresses have lived in a suit case for some years and are now living in a very crowded wardrobe.
They need to be gently washed and pressed, or at least pressed but I didn't have time for that today because I was supposed to be keeping an eye on Dad and doing my knitting not hiding away playing in Mum's clothes like I used to when I was a child.

I am going to try to match the home made dresses to the patterns that she gave me.
There are shop bought dresses as well and what is interesting about them is that there are some raw edges to the fabric. mostly seams are finished simply with a folded machined edge or they have been pinked but there are other edges that have just been left.

The other thing that interested me was that Mum had lined most of the things she made. I had in my mind that Mum was a lazy seamstress but I was so wrong.
She has done beautiful work, how could I ever have thought any different.

OK, the first dress is made using this pattern

Simplicity 3321

Here is the dress...


I think it is a polished cotton


She made the beautiful belt to go with it.

my sisters chistening 1963

And this, I believe is a picture of her in the dress.
It is my sister's christening.
My sister was born at the end of November 1962 so I guess this is late 62 or early 63.

So with a new born baby, who I am reliably told, never slept and two other children to care for, one who was at school and one of  preschool age  she managed to make this lovely dress, and the dress I am wearing too.

Next up is the essential summer coat and dress ensemble.
Mum was very big on summer coats and made them for herself and my sister and me. 
They were usually made from linen or a suitable weight cotton, always plain coloured and usually a pastel colour.

For this ensemble she used this pattern for the coat

Vogue 6086

And this one for the dress minus the neckline frill and with slightly shorter sleeves.
She borrowed this pattern, I see, from my cousin Wendy.

Butterick 3460 from 1965

And here it is...


The clothes look quite short but my Mum never wore anything shorter than just above the knee. 
She is only about 5'2" tall and quite slim so her clothes are small.


There are more pictures here.

And my vintage pattern collection is here.

22 Responses to “ ”

  1. thanks for sharing, they are beautiful. i love the last dress

  2. What a treasure.
    I always lament at all the lovely clothes my mum got rid of. She had shoes made to match her outfits as she was living in Singapore - talk about style !
    Our parents lived in a beautiful fashion era.

  3. Oh look at that amazing beautiful wide collar, how very special that you have a modern photo of the dress, the pattern it was made from and a pic of your mum wearing it in the era it was made. Beautiful documentation of its history!

  4. Wow!!
    Thanks for sharing...
    I love both the dresses they are so cute and so homely ,I love them.

  5. Oh how wonderful! Thank you so much for sharing. It's so amazing that your Mum has kept them all these years, and they still look as good as new! And you have the patterns....fantastic!

    Gosh, women knew how to dress themselves in those days, didn't they? :)

  6. Your mum was a superb seamstress Jenny. Easy to see where you inherit your crafting skills from. Love the old family pics, you haven't changed a bit.

  7. Wow, such lovely memories you are bringing back of my Mum's clothes at that time. Jenny your face hasn't changed much at all!

  8. I just had to tell you that I love your family. You too! Don't ever change! De

  9. Isis, I can just see you in that dress.

  10. I love looking at all your old photos and the stories that go with them. The patterns and dresses are just beautiful. Your mother must be a very elegant lady.

  11. Oh, aren't you lucky to have the clothes and the patterns to document! So glad we get a peek, too.

  12. Fabulous post, thank you for sharing!

  13. Amazing that you remember all the clothes that went with the patterns. I can't believe you have clothes that were handmade 50 years ago! I love the patterns from the 70's:-)

  14. How amazing! I hope you have time to document more - my grandmother made stunning clothes for her entire family but they're all gone; I only saw a few examples growing up and I so wish they'd been kept! So glad your mother kept hers!

  15. Such treasures. Thanks for sharing these.

    I have some clothes that my mil sewed and the patterns. I was so excited to get these. I'll be posting them in the future. I've already posted her long evening leather gloves from the 1950s.


  16. Amazing that you have the clothes and the patterns.

    I coveted a few of my mum's dresses. They hung in my closet through childhood and when I was a teenager I wanted to wear one to a dance and found she had given them all to a charity shop! I still remember every detail of the red rose patterned one I wanted to wear. I would still wear it if I could find one like it.

  17. Ohh!!! Your are lucky you still have the dresses and the pictures of your mom wearing them!! That's a treasure you have!!! I love them all!

  18. Oh wow - these are wonderful. They are such a slice of cultural history, of the kind that so often gets overlooked. I'd certainly go to see these in an exhibition - I particularly like the fact that you have the patterns and the photographs so that you can document the process. Can I suggest that you might want to record your mum talking about making them - why she chose the patterns and fabric, what the occasions were. It would be a wonderful piece of local history.

  19. What a great project! I can't believe you have the pattern, dress and a picture of her wearing it---that is amazing! I can't wait to see what else you have to document and share.
    ~Christine H.

  20. Wow, this is a fantastic post - really brings both the patterns and dresses to life. Great project.

  21. What a fun post!
    Thanks for sharing Mum's clothes and her fashionable style.



Thanks so much for taking the time to chat. I don't always have time to reply but I do read every message you leave.