3 Mar 2012

McCalls 7441, Helen Lee pattern

My favourite mid century children's clothing designer is Helen Lee.
For me her designs embody all that was great about children's clothes at this time, stylish but practical, age appropriate but not falsely babyish.
Clean lines, usually designed with play in mind, never fussy.

McCall's 8123, Helen Lee pattern from 1965

The patterns you see here are from my own collection and some were inherited from my mother which means these patterns were used to make clothes for my sister and me.

Though as much as I love the pattern designs though I adore the artwork on these pattern envelopes.
I have never been able to find out who the artist was but I am so grateful for their sweet considered work that captures not only the sweet clothes and adorable hairstyles of the day
 but also the essence of these little pattern models, captures the essence of  childhood.
Of course no one is ever crabby on a pattern envelope or throwing a tantrum, or sad  or hurt but the sunshine days are there.

McCall's 7955 Helen Lee pattern from 1965

To say I have been influenced by these wonderful patterns , by the work of Helen Lee and her mysterious artist is an understatement.
 I absorbed her work by wearing it as a child, clothes made by my mum. I made the same clothes for my daughter, 38 years later and now they influence the clothes I make for my dolls.

I have many more Helen Lee patterns in my large collection of vintage patterns.
I trawl Etsy looking for more.
I have this dream of making matching child and doll Helen Lee inspired clothes, but I know there are not enough hours in my day.


3 Responses to “Influences”

  1. Cute patterns. So funny on the pattern that says not for chubby girls.

  2. I agree! I love all of those designs! And also your dolls! Jackie

  3. Such cute outfits and lovely illustrations! Perfect for your dolls. :)


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