Tag Archives: surplice line

Autumn Wedding, 1927

Planning an Autumn Wedding? Here are some fashions suggested in Butterick’s Delineator magazine, September, 1927.

Autumn Wedding Fashions, Butterick 1598, 1638, and 1650, Delineator, September, 1927, p. 31.

Autumn Wedding Fashions, Butterick 1593, 1638, and 1650, Delineator, September, 1927, p. 31.

What to wear to a wedding, Sept. 1927. Butterick patterns.

What to wear to a wedding, Sept. 1927. Butterick patterns 1593 and 1638..

Butterick 1593 was suggested for the Mother of the Bride. 1927.

Butterick 1593 was suggested for the Mother of the Bride. 1927.

A wedding guest might wear Butterick 1638. 1927.

A wedding guest might wear Butterick 1638, an afternoon dress. 1927.

The same pattern, No. 1650, could be used for “a very young bride” and her bridesmaids:

Butterick 1650 for bride and bridesmaids. 1927.

Butterick 1650 for bride and bridesmaids. 1927.

450 bride young 1650 1927 sept p 31 bride autumn wedding 1598 1638 1650 1650 text alt view btm rt450 bridesmaid 1650 1927 sept p 31 bride autumn wedding 1598 1638 1650 1650 text alt view btm rt

The bride’s close-fitting basque (bodice) had a side seam closing. The bridesmaid’s dress has three decorative bands, one at the natural waist.

For a more sophisticated bride, Butterick 1624.. Perhaps the other items are for her trousseau? Butterick pqttern from Delineator, Sept. 1927, p. 30.

For a more sophisticated bride, a street length wedding gown. Butterick 1624. The other items are for her wedding guests.  Butterick pattern from Delineator, Sept. 1927, p. 30.

Butterick coat pattern 1584 and dress pattern 1640. 1927.

Butterick coat pattern 1584 and dress pattern 1640. From 1927.

1584 coat1927 sept p 30 bride autumn wedding 1584 1640 1624 bride 1618 text btm left1640 dress frock1927 sept p 30 bride autumn wedding 1584 1640 1624 bride 1618 text btm left

Butterick bridal gown 1624, and dress 1618. 1927.

Butterick bridal gown 1624, and dress 1618 for a guest. From 1927. Although short, the wedding dress has a long train.

450 bride 1624 1927 sept p 30 bride autumn wedding 1584 1640 1624 bride 1618 image text btm rt450 guest 1618 1927 sept p 30 bride autumn wedding 1584 1640 1624 bride 1618 image text btm rt

Click here for a closer view of that necklace.

Weddings and dancing go together, so here are three evening frocks from the same issue:

Evening dresses, Butterick patterns 1620, 1646, and 1648. Delineator, September 1927, page 34.

Evening dresses, Butterick patterns 1620, 1646, and 1648. Delineator, September 1927, page 34.

450 1629 evening frock 1927 sept p 34 formal 1620

1646 completed1927 sept p 34

450 1648 dancing frock 1927 sept p 34 formal 1620 1646 1648 btm rt text

Back views of Butterick evening dress patterns 1620, 1646, and 1648. From 1927.

Back and alternate views of Butterick evening dress patterns 1620, 1646, and 1648. From 1927.

1646 could have beaded straps (a rather new idea) or the more usual round or V shaped neckline. 1620 has a “tasseled necklace trimming.” Patou introduced evening dresses with trompe l’oeil necklace trimming as part of the dress in 1927. If made as an afternoon dress, No. 1646 would have sleeves, probably to the wrist.

All illustrations by L. Frerrier.

Personally, I’d go for No. 1638 or 1640, which use two textures in the same color for a subtle contrast and Art Deco chic.

Art Deco geometry and subtle contrasts of texture in monochromatic dresses. 1927. Double-sided crepe, in matte and shiny finishes, was a popular fabric for styles like these.

Art Deco geometry and subtle contrasts of texture in these dresses from 1927. Double-sided crepe, with one side matte and one side shiny, was a popular fabric for styles like these. Or you could use velvet and satin….

Dress #1640 (which was available in patterns up to a 44″ bust with 47.5″ hips) would be a great choice for women who are uncomfortable with the  typical 1920’s dropped waist — it has no waist at all! I wish I’d seen this research years ago.

 

 

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Filed under 1920s, Vintage patterns, Vintage Styles in Larger Sizes

Paris Fashions from The Delineator, 1929, Part 2

The first page of The Delineator’s Paris Fashion report showed daytime clothes — suits, coats, etc. The second page showed a mix of evening and daytime clothing designs, sketched for the magazine’s November 1929 issue.

Paris Couture for day and evening, Delineator, Nov. 1929, page 27.

Paris Couture for day and evening, Delineator, Nov. 1929, page 27.

This page combined day, afternoon, and evening styles. The illustrator is Leslie Saalburg. The descriptions are direct quotations from The Delineator. In numerical order:

Chanel wool dress, sketched in Delineator, Nov. 1929. p. 27.

Chanel wool georgette dress, sketched in Delineator, Nov. 1929. p. 27.

Similar tucks, used on the diagonal, can be seen on earlier dresses by Vionnet. Click here.

A satin dress by Jenny, sketched for Delineator,Nov. 1929.

A satin dress by Jenny, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929. Crepe-backed satin can be used with either side out, matte or shiny.

Jenny is one of the designers who was very successful in the twenties, but not much discussed now. This 1930 dressing gown by Jenny is in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum. So is this embroidered coat from the 1920’s, with her label.

Evening gown by Cheruit, sketch from Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Evening gown by Cheruit, sketch from Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Cheruit’s elaborate gowns were successful in the first decades of the 20th century. (Click here for an exquisitely sequined dress (in an interesting article) at the Museum of London. After she retired, her house continued in the 1920’s; her premises were later occupied by Schiaparelli (1935).

Long black tulle gown by Lucien Lelong, Delineator sketch, Nov. 1929.

Long black tulle gown by Lucien Lelong, Delineator sketch, Nov. 1929.

The tulle is in graduated tucks. Click here for a black tulle Lelong gown from the early 1930’s.

Floral print chiffon evening gown by louiseboulanger. Delineator sketch, Nov. 1929.

Floral print chiffon evening gown by louiseboulanger. Delineator sketch, Nov. 1929.

This evening gown, in the collection of FIT, is print chiffon, apparently from the same louiseboulanger 1929 collectionClick here for an earlier 1920’s evening dress by louiseboulanger — it’s short and feathered, and fabulous.

Jean Patou shwed this green velvet evening gown, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Jean Patou showed this green velvet evening gown, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Another Patou from 1929 can be seen here.

Moire taffeta evening gown by louiseboulanger, sketched in Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Moire taffeta evening gown by louiseboulanger, sketched in Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Louise Boulanger worked under several variations of her name. The run-on, all lower case version — louiseboulanger — was the latest.

White satin, one shouldered evening gown by Vionnet, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

White satin, one-shouldered evening gown by Vionnet, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

I have written about Vionnet before. Other evening gowns can be seen here and here.

Blue georgette evening gown by Chanel, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Blue georgette evening gown by Chanel, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

The hem is long all around, unlike most of the other evening hems shown here, which have “dipping” hemlines or long draperies with a short front hem. (Lelong’s black tulle evening gown — #19 –has an even hem that becomes increasingly sheer near the floor.)

A Short black velvet eveing dress by Molyneux, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

A short black velvet evening dress by Molyneux, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

A dress by Vionnet, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

A dress by Vionnet, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Black crepe dress by Lanvin, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Black crepe dress by Lanvin, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Jeanne Lanvin joined the Syndicat de la Couture in 1909. A coat and dress ensemble from Lanvin, at the Met, dated 1926, is so short that it looks nineteen sixties, on first glance.

A tightly fitting evening dress by Jenny, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

A tightly fitting evening dress by Jenny, sketched for Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Like the Vionnet dress above, (#23) one shoulder is revealed and one is covered.

A long gown by Lanvin, Delineator sketch, Nov. 1929.

A long gown by Lanvin, Delineator sketch, Nov. 1929.

The hem appears to be slightly raised in front.

Purple lounging pajamas designed by Mary Nowitsky, from Delineator, Nov. 1929.

Purple lounging pajamas designed by Mary Nowitsky, from Delineator, Nov. 1929.

You can see more about beach and lounging pajamas at The Vintage Traveler or here.

In Part 1, I mentioned that Jean Patou took credit for lowering the hemline in 1929. Here are three images from this 1929 Delineator article; Patou’s dress is slightly longer.

Hems for daytime, Nov. 1929. Patou, Chanel.

Hems for daytime, Nov. 1929. Nowitsky, Patou, Chanel.

Something much more significant, if you’re tracing changes in fashion, is something that can be seen in these four dresses:

Four designs from Nov. 1929. All have natural waistlines, accented with a belt.

Four designs from Nov. 1929. All have natural waistlines, accented with a belt.

Natural waistlines, emphasized with a tight belt. November, 1929. (Street photographs and movies from the late twenties sometimes show that women were already wearing belts at their waists, especially the belts of coats; perhaps because, without a deforming corset, belts tend to rise to the natural waist on a woman with a well-defined waist and wider hips.)

Belted coat from Sears catalog, Spring, 1929. A belt like this will tend to rise to the natural waist when tightened.

Belted coat from Sears catalog, Spring, 1929. A belt like this will tend to rise to the natural waist when tightened.

(“Kit fox dyed coney trimmed collar” means the collar was trimmed with rabbit fur.)

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Filed under 1920s, 1920s-1930s, Vintage Couture Designs

A Skirt and Two Waists, January 1917

Some Butterick patterns for January 1917, Delineator magazine.

Some Butterick patterns for January 1917, Delineator magazine. These are not dresses, but skirts with separate blouses [called “waists.”]

These are not dresses. Bodice, or “Waist” patterns were sold separately from skirt patterns for a long time. (Sometimes, sleeve patterns were sold separately, too.) In Victorian times, practical women often had two bodices made to match one skirt:  a high necked, long-sleeved bodice for day, and a low-cut, short sleeved bodice for evening wear. When upper and middle class families “dressed for dinner” every night, this was a sensible way to maximize the clothing budget. Skirts took several yards of fabric, while bodices took less fabric but more labor.

It’s not surprising that patterns for these 1917 skirts, which take a lot of fabric, were also sold separately from their “waists”, i.e. blouses. This allowed women a great deal of originality in their costume, and made it possible to use one elaborate skirt with several top variations, as shown in these Delineator illustrations featuring Butterick skirt pattern 8875.

The simplest (and barest) version of both skirt and waist were shown in an editorial illustration:

Editorial Illustration, Delineator,  Jan. 1917. The top and skirt of this evening ensemble were sold separately, and both skirt  (No. 8875) and waist (No. 8901) had variations.

Editorial Illustration, Delineator, Jan. 1917. Patterns for the top and skirt of this evening “frock” were sold separately, and both skirt (No. 8875) and waist (No. 8901) had variations.

[I was able to identify the pattern numbers because they were featured in more detail elsewhere in the magazine. Butterick didn’t usually specify the patterns used for the full-page editorial illustrations that began Delineator‘s pattern pages every month.]

In this illustration, the surplice [wrap] waist is very bare, and trimmed with embroidery  at shoulder and waist:

Waist pattern 8901, shown sleeveless. Jan. 1917 Delineator, p. 37.

Waist pattern 8901, shown sleeveless. Jan. 1917 Delineator, p. 37.

On a different page, the same waist has short lace sleeves to match its more elaborate skirt:

Butterick waist pattern 8901, illustrated on page 38. Delineator, Jan 1917.

Butterick waist pattern 8901, illustrated on page 38. Delineator, Jan 1917.

Waist 8901 requires a “French lining,” which would have been close-fitting and supported the loose folds of the fashion fabric layer. Pattern 8901 was sold in sizes 32 to 46 inches bust measurement.

Butterick Skirt pattern 8875, from 1917

Skirt pattern 8875 can be made relatively simply, as on page 37:

Skirt pattern 8875 as illustrated on page 37, Delineator Jan. 1917

Skirt pattern 8875 as illustrated on page 37, Delineator Jan. 1917

Here, the sides of the panels are open at the natural waist and the front and back panels are connected with a button. The underskirt appears to be finely pleated chiffon, matching the fabric seen at the bodice underarm. [This skirt could also be made with the underskirt and overskirt of the same silky fabric — see color illustration below.]

Editorial Illustration, Delineator,  Jan. 1917. The top and skirt of this evening ensemble were sold separately, and both skirt  (No. 8875) and waist (No. 8901) had variations.

Editorial Illustration, Delineator, Jan. 1917. Page 37. This version has a plain, sheer, pleated fabric under the silk parts of the skirt and bodice.

The version with short lace sleeves was shown with matching lace — yards and yards of it — for an underskirt.

Waist 8901 with lace sleeves, and skirt 8875 with a lavish lace underskirt. Delineator, Jan. 1917, page 38.

Waist 8901 with lace sleeves, and skirt 8875 with a lavish lace underskirt. Delineator, Jan. 1917, page 38.

A closer view of this version of skirt 8875:

This version of skirt pattern 8875 has a lace underskirt, open at the sides like the overskirt, pulled through the opening near the natural waist.

This version of skirt pattern 8875 has a lace underskirt, open at the sides like the overskirt, and pulled through the opening near the natural waist. The patterned stockings echo the lacy look.

Butterick 8875:  “The skirt has an extremely graceful drapery at the front and back which gives a cascade effect at the sides. The underskirt is cut in two pieces and can be made with a flounce having a straight lower edge. The skirt is 39 inches long in front and has a slightly raised waistline.”

To make the skirt as illustrated would not be cheap. “A medium size requires 4  1/2 yards of taffeta silk 36 inches wide, 1/2 yard lace 22 inches wide, 7  1/2 yards edging 16 inches wide, 1  3/8 yard of narrow edging, 2  1/2 yards material for underskirt. Bottom foundation skirt measures 2  1/2 yards.”  When I was studying this illustration, I wondered how the underskirt could have galloon edged lace on three sides; apparently, the lace we see is the seven-plus yards of 18″ wide edging. The skirt shown here has at least three layers: silk top drape, lace under-drape, and and opaque “foundation skirt.” This skirt pattern was available in waist measurements 22 to 36 inches, for 20 cents.

Waist Pattern 8863 with Skirt pattern 8875

Skirt pattern 8875 was also illustrated with a completely different bodice, No. 8863, which had its own variations.

Other views of skirt pattern 8875, with waist 8901, left, and waist pattern 8863, right. Delineator,  Jan. 1917 .

Other views of skirt pattern 8875, with waist 8901, left, and waist pattern 8863, right. Delineator, Jan. 1917.

Butterick waist pattern 8863 with Skirt 8875:

Waist 8863 with skirt 8875, Delineator Jan. 1917.

Waist 8863 with skirt 8875, Delineator Jan. 1917. Embroidered bag transfer pattern 10616.

This is a day or afternoon version of the look. In this case, the skirt has been made with panels and underskirt of the same fabric, and trimmed with beading and tassels, which match the points of the bodice.  “Satin, charmeuse, taffeta or crepe meteor” are recommended. This two-piece outfit is described as a “smart frock.”

Butterick Waist pattern 8863:  “The waist has a draped front which is in one with the sash ends — a very new and effective arrangement for the back. The closing is made at the left shoulder and at the seam under the arm. Two different types of long sleeves with one seam are offered, or you could use the shorter length if you prefer. [The color illustration shows long, sheer sleeves with a cuff, and the black and white views show a tight long sleeve, left, and a below elbow sleeve, right. “The lower edge of the waist can be cut  in a single [black and white illus.]  or double pointed effect [color illus.]

Waist 8863 with a single point center front and high collared chemisette, or with the sheer collared V-neck chemisette shown in the color illustration.

Waist 8863 with a single point center front and a high-collared chemisette, or with the sheer collar and V-neck shown in the color illustration. Butterick also sold the embroidery design, Transfer No. 10101.

“The chemisette and collar can be omitted, but not the French lining, which is extremely important.” [I believe “French lining” refers to a close-fitted lining that does not have exactly the shape of the outer garment; it supports blouson or ruched and gathered effects on the outer layer and was very common on 19th century bodices.]

Waist pattern 8863 with sheer, cuffed sleeves and a double-pointed top, trimmed with embroidery and beaded tassels.

Waist pattern 8863 with sheer, cuffed sleeves and a double-pointed top, trimmed with beaded embroidery and tassels to match the skirt. The bag is also beaded and tasseled.

In 1917, one skirt pattern and two bodice patterns provided many variations; a woman could really feel that her choices would give her a unique look. Careful planning could also give her several “frocks” which used just one skirt. A second, more workaday, skirt pattern made from coordinated fabric could really multiply her wardrobe.

Simpler Skirts, January 1917

Skirts and blouses for day wear, Delineator, January 1917. p. 45.

Skirts and blouses for day wear, Delineator, January 1917. p. 45.

Since taffeta and silk were worn in daytime, as well as evening, one of these skirts might also be combined with the waists shown with skirt 8875.

I can’t resist pointing out the chi-chi balls / ball fringe trimming the hat on the right. Ole!

Hat with ball fringe, January 1917. Delineator, page 45.

Hat with ball fringe, January 1917. Delineator, page 45.

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Filed under 1900s to 1920s, bags, handbags, Hats, Purses, Vintage Accessories, Vintage patterns

Gowns for New Year’s Eve, 1937

Butterick pattern 7650, December 1937. Cover, Butterick Fashion News flyer.

Butterick pattern 7650, December 1937. Cover, Butterick Fashion News flyer.

You may not have time to make one of these gowns for New Year’s Eve 2014, but Butterick offered a variety of choices for 1937. Long gowns could be revealing dance dresses, like this one, or covered-up dinner dresses, in fabrics ranging from metallic brocades and lamés to velvet or satin.

Butterick 7650

Butterick pattern 7650, left, and a store-bought dress featured in Woman's Home Companion, both from December, 1937.

Butterick pattern 7650, left, and a store-bought dress with similar top featured in Woman’s Home Companion, both from December, 1937.

Butterick 7650 is described as a “Junior Miss evening dress” to be made “in metal threaded crepe.” Pattern for sizes 12 to 20, 30 to 38 inch bust. The dress on the right was featured in the Styles in Stores column of Woman’s Home Companion:

“The evening dress would make a shining success at a gala New Year’s party —  and for various excellent reasons. The first has to do with the sparkle (it is really glamorous) of the rhinestone trimming, applied in a new scroll effect. The second concerns the rustle of the material,  a white, black or sapphire taffeta which is sure to be heard on the smartest dance floors this winter. The third springs from the graceful swing of the full skirt and the fourth, from the novel cut of the halter neckline. Famous Barr Company, St. Louis.”

Butterick 7644 and 7646

"Glamour at Night" evening gowns, Butterick Fashion News flyer, Dec. 1927. The gown on the left is pattern #7644; the one on the right is #7646.

“Glamour at Night” evening gowns, Butterick Fashion News flyer, Dec. 1937. The gown on the left is pattern #7644; the one on the right is #7646.

Pattern descriptions and back views, Butterick 7644 and 7646.

Pattern descriptions and back views, Butterick 7644 and 7646. Dec. 1937.

Both evening gowns are the “new slit-up-in-front” style. The one shown in black is made of taffeta and has “the new corseted silhouette:”  “Dramatized last summer by the Duchess of Windsor the long molded line from diaphragm to hip top is now the most important point in the new silhouette.” — Woman’s Home Companion, December 1937.  The fabric suggested for the gown illustrated in white is satin. The backs are low-cut and bare. Pattern 7646 was also featured in an ad for Butterick Winter Fashion Magazine, which cost 25 cents, unlike the free Butterick Fashion News flyer. (The ad, on newsprint, is very grainy.  The dress may or may not be velvet.)

Another view of Butterick 7646, Dec. 1937.

Another view of Butterick 7646, Dec. 1937.

Dinner Dresses

This was also an era when women wore long gowns to dinner at restaurants and private homes, to night clubs, and to the theatre. “Dinner dresses” tended to be more covered up than evening gowns — often, they were made from the same pattern as a shorter day dress, as the following examples show.

"That Corseted Look:" Companion-Butterick patterns from Woman's Home Companion, Nov. 1937.

“That Corseted Look:” Companion-Butterick patterns from Woman’s Home Companion, Nov. 1937. Left, #7624; right and seated, #7626.

Butterick stopped publishing its fashion and news magazine, The Delineator,  abruptly in April 1937. However, the Butterick pattern empire, with offices in Paris and other European cities, continued. An agreement with its (former) rival magazine, Woman’s Home Companion, was in place, and the WHC began featuring “Companion-Butterick” patterns in 1937.  Consequently, patterns illustrated in the Butterick Fashion News store flyers might also be illustrated, in full color, in Woman’s Home Companion. 

Companion-Butterick 7626

Companion-Butterick pattern 7626, from Butterick Fashion News flyer, Dec. 1937.

Companion-Butterick pattern 7626, from Butterick Fashion News flyer, Dec. 1937.

Here, pattern 7626 is “A dress as new as the minute and elegant in black velvet.” For sizes 12 to 20, or 30 to 40 inch bust. [12 to 20 were sizes for young or small women.] It is “corseted” because of the snug, ruched waist, which fitted tightly because of side seam zippers on both sides. The day version could be made with a print bodice.

Daytime version of Companion Butterick 7626. WHC, Nov. 1937.

Daytime version of Companion-Butterick 7626. WHC, Nov. 1937.

Companion-Butterick 7624

Companion-Butterick pattern 7624, "That Corseted Look," WHC Nov. 1937.

Companion-Butterick pattern 7624, “That Corseted Look,” WHC Nov. 1937.

“Soft gathers in the bodice and the new slim corseted waist…. Bias cut skirt.” The Butterick Fashion flyer suggested that the dress on the left be made from satin crepe. Sizes 12 to 20, 3o to 40.  Its shaped midriff is accented [and slenderized] by a row of tiny buttons down the front. [See below.]

No. 7624 (left) and 7628 (right) were "Glamour for Night." Butterick Fashion flyer Dec. 1937.

No. 7624 (left) and 7628 (right) were “Glamour for Night.” Butterick Fashion News flyer Dec. 1937.

Companion Butterick 7628

Companion Butterick 7628,  pictured on the right, above, has “The high draped surplice line in a lovely lamé dinner dress.” The magazine reminded readers that they could use the same pattern for “a formal day dress or a simple dinner dress, or both.” Both versions were accented by a colorful “high placed handkerchief” to match your shoes, bag, or hat.

A long dinner-dress version of Companion-Butterick 7628. WHC Nov. 1937.

A  long dinner-dress version of Companion-Butterick 7628. WHC Nov. 1937.

A formal day dress version of Companion-Butterick pattern 7628, Nov. 1937.

A formal day dress version of Companion-Butterick pattern 7628, Nov. 1937.

The hostess of a dinner party could also wear a long “hostess” gown or a “housecoat.” See Companion-Butterick Triad Patterns for an example.

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Filed under 1930s, Companion-Butterick Patterns, Vintage patterns, Zippers

Tam-O’-Shanters for the 1920s, Part 2

Tam pattern # 5458 for Ladies, Misses, girls and Children, Delineator, Sept. 1925.

Tam pattern # 5458 for Ladies, Misses, girls and Children, Delineator, Sept. 1925.

For those who don’t want to wear a cloche hat with their 1920s outfits, there are many other authentic hat options. One, very popular around 1925, was the Tam-o’-Shanter. It was usually, but not always, worn by younger women, and was usually, but not always, more sporty than a cloche.  All of the following Tam-o’-Shanter patterns were featured in Butterick’s Delineator magazine in 1925, although some had first appeared in 1924.

Butterick Tam-o’-Shanter Pattern 5402

Butterick Tam pattern 5402, illustrated in August, 1924 .Delineator.

Butterick Tam pattern #5402, illustrated in August, 1924. Delineator.

The easy ribbon trim, which forms a sort of tassel, looks like it could be pinned into place or secured with beads or buttons. The band could be turned under, as on the left. Popular fabrics for tam-o-shanters included silk velvet, cotton velvet (velveteen or velours,) wool flannel, wool jersey, taffeta, and duvetyn [a fabric with a short nap.] 1924 aug p 34 tam 5402 patternPurely decorative hat pins — Cartier called them “cliquets” — appear on 1920s tams as well as on cloches, or piercing the turned-up front brim of a larger hat. 1925 april p 29 misses hat cliquetHere is Tam pattern 5402 illustrated on young teens:

Butterick tam pattern #5402 illustrated in April 1925, (L) and August 1924 (R). Delineator.

Butterick tam pattern #5402 illustrated in April 1925, (L) and August 1924 (R). Delineator.

Below is the same tam, #5204, illustrated as worn by an adult; a Butterick embroidery transfer has been used to decorate the both hem of her tunic and the crown of her hat. The tunic is worn over a “costume slip,” i.e., a slip intended to show.

Butterick tam pattern #5402 trimmed with Embroidery transfer #10233. Delineator, Jan., 1925.

Butterick tam pattern #5402 trimmed with Embroidery transfer #10233. Delineator, Jan., 1925.

Butterick Tam-o-Shanter Pattern 5416

Butterick Tam pattern #5416, illustrated in August, 1924. Delineator.

Butterick Tam pattern #5416, illustrated in August, 1924. Delineator.

Again, the tam is illustrated on a youngster, probably for “Girls 8 to 14,” but the pattern was intended for women as well. 1924 aug p 34 tam 5416 text

Tam 5416 on a girl with skates,  Jan 1925 and a sophistcated woman, Dec 1925 . Delineator.

Tam #5416 on a girl with skates, Jan. 1925, and on a sophisticated woman, Dec., 1925 . Delineator.

Butterick Tam-o’-Shanter Pattern #5458

Butterick Tam pattern #5458, illustrated in September, 1924. Delineator.

Butterick Tam pattern #5458, illustrated in September, 1924. Delineator.

 

Tam #5458 trimmed with a feather, Oct. 1924, and a tassel, Feb. 1925. Delineator.

Tam #5458 trimmed with a feather, Oct. 1924, and an orange [!] tassel, Feb. 1925. Delineator.

Tam 5458 trimmed with a button, Dec. 1924, and a very long feather, Jan. 1925. Delineator.

Tam #5458 trimmed with a button, Dec. 1924, and a very long feather, Jan. 1925. Delineator.

 

Tam #5458 worn by a dressed up Miss, age 15 to 20, and by a younger teen, with ice skates.

Tam #5458 worn by a dressed-up Miss, age 15 to 20, and by a younger teen, carrying ice skates. Delineator.

Tam-o’-Shanters were also popular in the 1910s;  to read about Tam-O-Shanters for Women, circa 1917,  click here.

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Filed under 1920s, Accessory Patterns, Children's Vintage styles, Hats, Sportswear, Vintage Accessories, Vintage patterns

Swimsuits and Cruise Clothes, 1936

Ladies' Home Journal, February, 1936

Ladies’ Home Journal, February, 1936

Here are a group of photographs by Fowler-Bagby showing appropriate outfits for a cruise, or for wear in warm climates; the article appeared in the February issue of Ladies’ Home Journal, 1936. In order to show details more clearly, I will break up larger pictures into closer views.

Bathing Suits for 1936

Bathing suits, LHJ, 1936.

Bathing suits, Ladies’ Home Journal, 1936.

From left, a brown maillot under a brown jersey wrap-around skirt; “Up the ladder, skirted swim suit in the new green, with salmon-pink top, bands crossed under the chin. In blue, the famous surplice suit that came from Antibes and does wonders for a good figure. The printed cotton two-piece suit, coral pattern and coral color with white. The blonde lastex crepe suit, with the square peasant scarf worn in immigrant fashion. The heavy terry-knit maillot and swagger coat in pink and red, with a red shiny straw hat in unusual shape.” [A maillot is a one-piece swimsuit.]

The brown outfit is trimmed with “Mexican-colored bands” and includes co-0rdinated purse, belt, and shoes.lhj 1936 feb p 20 striped shoes leftThe blue surplice suit is also shown with colorful sandals:lhj 1936 feb p 20 blue swimsuit shoesI’m afraid the “blonde” lastex suit does not make a very good impression on this particular model, but the coral print two-piece shares the back interest of some evening dresses featured later in the article. The “heavy terry-knit maillot” would probably feel like swimming in a wet bath towel; it’s probably more for lounging than swimming. lhj 1936 feb p 20 swimsuits rightThe 1950s swimsuits that I remember usually did not show separate leg openings like these from 20 years earlier, but had a sort of modesty panel, like the green ‘skirted’ suit on the ladder.

Two Piece Tropical Swim Suit, 1936

This story illustration, by Ritchie Cooper, appeared in the same issue as the swimsuits pictured above:

Story illustration by Ritchie Cooper, LHJ, Feb. 1936

Story illustration by Ritchie Cooper, Ladies’ Home Journal, Feb. 1936

The setting is tropical (Hawaii?) and the full, skirt-like shorts resemble the coral and white print bathing suit above.

Cruise Wardrobe, 1936

This article in the Ladies’ Home Journal reminds women that they will probably be going ashore, so they will need appropriate clothes for the ports they visit, as well as evening dress for dining on board:

“Don’t misjudge your destination. Havana . . . is a metropolitan city, where you should be dressed as circumspectly as in Boston. In some places, . . . you might want to stop in at the big hotel for tea. Better wear a more conventional costume [than “your little deck dress”] and be ready! Only if you know your ground can you be casual about your clothes. If you plan to grab bicycles the minute you get off the dock in Bermuda and ride all day, then your culotte skirt would be completely comfortable and appropriate.”

lhj 1936 feb p 21 22  cruise clothes culottesThe dress on the left has a culotte skirt, which looks like a normal skirt when you stand up straight. It is still not considered dressy enough for Havana. The pants on the right are very full knickers (“plus fours”) which are described as “a coming (but not an arrived) fashion. This year, probably only a few leaders will take them up.”

Versatile Jacket Dresses

The jackets make these dresses appropriate for “deck” or more formal situations on shore.

A dress with matching jacket. 1936, Ladies' Home Journal.

A dress with matching jacket. 1936, Ladies’ Home Journal.

Mauve jacket dress with halter top, 1936.

Mauve jacket dress with halter top, 1936.

Red, white and blue jacket with a nautical print. 1936 cruise wear.

Red, white and blue belted jacket with a nautical print. 1936 cruise wear.

 

"An 'American peasant" outfit for ship or shore; blue denim suit, cotton bandanna blouse, farmer's hat, and a red bag. 1936.

“An ‘American peasant” outfit for ship or shore; blue denim suit, cotton bandanna blouse, farmer’s hat, and a red bag. 1936.

Evening Gowns and  a Dinner Suit

Chartreuse chiffon evening gown, pleated skirt. "The transparent wrap, copied from Heim, is of printed organzine." 1936

Chartreuse chiffon evening gown, pleated skirt. “The transparent wrap, copied from Heim, is of printed organzine.” 1936

lhj 1936 feb p 21 22 evening cruise clothes btm rtlhj 1936 feb p 21 22 evening cruise clothes btm left

Bon Voyage!

 

 

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Rapid Change in 1920s Fashion: Women, 1924 to 1925

Women's dresses: December 1924 and December 1925

Women’s dresses: December 1924 and December 1925

1925 was  a year of rapid change in women’s fashions. In addition to rising hemlines, this year marked the beginning of the end for tubular dresses worn over bust-flattening undergarments, and the introduction of a more feminine silhouette. To give an idea of how quickly styles changed, I’ll show some images from Delineator magazine that appeared just one year apart — some from the end of 1924, and some from the end of 1925.

Women’s Coats:  1924 and 1925

These two coats — pictured one month apart — were the latest styles for the end of 1924.

Left: Butterick coat pattern, Dec. 1924. Right: Lanvin coat, Jan. 1925.

Left: Butterick coat pattern, Dec. 1924. Right: Lanvin coat, Jan. 1925.

“Lanvin’s coat of beige raily kasha flares into godets at the lower part and is trimmed with a very small collar and very large cuffs of antelope and leopard skin. With it is a muff.”

Here are three coats from December 1925, Just Twelve Months Later:

Butterick coat patterns from December, 1925.

Butterick coat patterns from December, 1925.

These three coats look modern (or moderne) — the way we usually picture the 1920s. In one year, subtle changes in fit and proportion have severed the connection with the long, tubular fashions that began the decade.

December 1924 and December 1925 Fashions Illustrated in Color

Here is a closer look at some women’s dresses from December 1924:

Women's Dresses, December 1924, from Butterick's Delineator magazine.

Women’s Dresses, December 1924, from Butterick’s Delineator magazine.

These 1924 tunic dresses are ‘tubular’, falling straight from the shoulders over a low, flattened bust (especially noticeable at far left.) Tunic styles often show indecision about skirt length: there is a short hem and a long hem.

Women's Dresses, December 1925, from Butterick's Delineator magazine.

Women’s Dresses, December 1925, from Butterick’s Delineator magazine.

Twelve months later, the difference in hem length is not the only big change; while the tunic dresses of 1924 got narrower at the bottom, these dresses have some flare from the waist or hip to the hems. The real innovation can be seen in the red gown; it is a new “princess line” dress. The vertical seams allow it to be shaped to the body, curving out slightly over the bust and curving in slightly at the loosely fitted waist. There would be little point in flattening your chest to wear such a dress, although some older women clung to their familiar undergarments.

Evening Dresses and Wraps, 1924 and 1925

Evening Wrap Coat and Evening Dress, January 1924.

Evening Wrap Coat and Evening Dress, January 1924.

Later in the same year, 1924:

Evening Wrap Coat and Evening Dresses, December 1924.

Evening Wrap Coat and Evening Dresses, December 1924.

There is more hip interest, and a surplice (diagonally closing) gown. These are minor changes compared to the drastically different look of December, 1925:

Evening Wrap Coat and Evening Dresses, December, 1925.

Evening Wrap Coat and Evening Dresses, December, 1925.

The loosely belted columnar dress (January 1924) has been replaced with dresses that have distinct bodices and skirts, a strong accent at the hips, and geometric, Art Deco details. The effect is crisper and shorter. All the models now wear the mannish, ‘shingled’ hair style.

Surplice Closing Dress (right) from December 1925.

Surplice Closing Dress (right) from December 1925.

Surplice gown, Dec. 1924.

Surplice gown, Dec. 1924.

In one year, the surplice dress has gone from baggy to streamlined.

Coming soon:  Dresses for teens and young women, 1924 and 1925.

 

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Tubular Twenties: Some Early 1920s Fashions

It’s easy to forget that the decade known as The Twenties saw considerable changes in fashion. The period of ‘bound breasts’ and cylindrical figures was ending by 1925. I think of the early 1920s as the ‘tubular twenties.’ The long, tubular dress pattern on the left, illustrated in Delineator in December, 1924 is closely related to this actual beaded dress from a private collection.

A Butterick dress pattern from December 1924, and a vintage beaded dress from the same period.

A Butterick dress pattern from December 1924, and a vintage beaded dress from the same period.

Both dresses are very long, and hang straight from the shoulders; the concentration of beading near the hem weights the dress.

Details of the beading on the front of the dress.

Details of the beading on the front of the dress.

This beading was probably done in China, for export.

This beading was probably done in China, for export.

The back of the chiffon dress was also beaded, so it was relatively heavy and fell without curves.

Cylinder Dresses and Flattened Curves, Early 1920s

Other designs from 1924 show the same long, cylindrical shape, with style variations.

Butterick patterns for January, 1924 from Delineator magazine, p. 38.

Butterick patterns for January, 1924, from Delineator magazine, p. 38.

More Butterick patterns for women, January 1924; Delineator, p.38.

More Butterick patterns for women, January 1924; Delineator, p.38.

Many fashion trends associated with the later 1920s are visible:  embroidery, a cloche hat, some dropped waists, side panels, etc. But these dresses are actually longer than the dresses of the World War I era, and they share the peculiarly low bust of that period.

Dresses for Young Women, January 1924

The styles above are for adult women. Patterns for teens, then called  ‘misses’ and sold by age (“size 15 to 20 years, or small ladies”) show the same tubular shape and low bust, but are slightly shorter.

Butterick patterns for misses, Delineator, January 1924, p. 37.

Butterick patterns for misses, Delineator, January 1924, p. 37.

The blue checked dress shows some indecision about the dropped waistline, and opts for two, a belt at the high hip and a band much lower. The dress on the far right has front panels and ends in a sash, like blouses of the early 1920s. It’s hard to imagine how a slim teen-aged girl could have the bust shown in the tan pleated dress, unless she was wearing a bust-flattening brassiere or bandeau, or a tube-like corselette (more about these in a later post.)

Evening dresses for misses and small ladies, January 1924, Delineator.

Evening dresses for misses and small ladies, January 1924, Delineator, p. 37.

Styles from Delineator, February 1924, p. 30.

Styles from Delineator, February 1924, p. 30.

The surplice line dresses on the left remained popular throughout the twenties, as did cloches and tam-o’shanter hats. The blue dress on the right — shortened and with a slight change in proportions — became a classic style for the rest of the decade. Below:  This is how Chanel interpreted it in January, 1925. Note the change in length, the bust dart, and the natural bustline. The flattened chest was going out of fashion.

Chanel design, January 1925, as sketched by Soulie in Delineator.

Chanel design, January 1925, as sketched by Soulie in Delineator.

 

 

 

 

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“Silver Hair Fashions”: Spring Styles for Older (and Larger) Women, 1931

“Silver Hair Fashions” from Butterick’s Delineator, April 1931

“Silver Hair Fashions” from Butterick’s Delineator, April 1931

Six “Silver Hair Fashions” for April, 19311931 april p silver hair fashions large sizes labeled top

A closer look at Butterick dress patterns # 3812 & 3797 (Top Right and Top Left):

3812 & 3797

3812   OLD IVORY LACE adds the final touch of distinction to this frock of sheer crêpe. There’s graceful movement in every line of the flared skirt, and the frills at the wrist match the self jabot. Choose this in soft rose if you are slim – if not-so-slim, black. For 40, 4 7/8 yards 39-inch georgette. Designed for 34 to 44. [bust] [I do wish the writers at Butterick Publishing had not repeatedly suggested that black was the only sensible color choice for larger women! How about something really daring – like navy?]

3797   PARIS SAYS GRAY and for the woman with silvery hair, nothing could be more flattering. This afternoon frock with vestee of white georgette  has gracefully molded hips and sleeves of three-quarter length. Flared wrapped skirt. For 40, 4 3/4 yards 39-inch silk crêpe; 3/8 yard 39-inch contrast.  Designed for 34 to 48.

Butterick patterns 3806, 3804, 3814, 3810; April 1931 Delineator

Butterick patterns 3806, 3804, 3814, 3810; April 1931 Delineator

3806   ONE-REVERS FASHION  Every line of this frock is either up-and-down or diagonal, creating the illusion of height and slenderness. Gray tweed would be very smart, with a white piqué collar, white gloves, and a matching tweed hat. . . . Designed for 34 to 52. [inch bust]

3804   IF YOU’RE NOT SLIM  This surplice frock with pleats will do amazing things in the way of slenderizing and lending additional height. The pleats are stitched down so that fullness begins just above the knee. Contrasting jabot. . . . Designed for 34 to 48 [inch bust. The “surplice line,” running diagonally across the bodice, was a favorite suggestion for women who wore large sizes in the 1920s, too.]

3814   PLEATS FOR FLATNESS This is the kind of ‘useful frock’ you’ll wear for everything from marketing to motoring and golf. [!] The points on the yoke match the points on the skirt panel, and there are four kick pleats. One-piece back. . . . Designed for 34 to 44 [bust.]

3810   LONG SLIM LINES For anyone inclined to be a bit overweight. The low V neck and diagonal flare of this frock will subtract pounds from the silhouette. Wear it in a print if you like. One-piece from shoulder to hem. . . . Designed for sizes 34 to 52 [inch bust.]

And a Reality Check from Lane Bryant, 1931

Obviously, all six of these dresses for “mature figures” have been illustrated by Butterick as they would appear on an elongated fashion figure, in smallish sizes, even when the pattern is “for anyone inclined to be a bit overweight,” or “not-so-slim.” Numbers 3806 and 3810 go up to size 52, which is several inches larger than a modern Size 24. [I give Butterick credit for realizing — in the 1930s! —  that many women make their own clothes because they have hard-to-fit figures.]

This Lane Bryant catalog advertisement — from the February 1931 Delineator — doesn’t mince words: “For Stout Women and Misses.”

Lane Bryant "Style Book"/Catalog Ad, February 1931

Lane Bryant “Style Book”/Catalog Ad, February 1931

The Lane Bryant  illustrations give a more realistic idea of how a 1931 dress would look on a woman with 48 inch hips and a good corset. The Lane Bryant styles also have that slenderizing, diagonal “surplice line,” even on the coat.

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1920s Styles for Larger Women, Part 1

For Bust Measurement 33 to 48 Inches

For Bust Measurement 36 to 48 Inches

1920s Patterns with Bust Measurement 44 Inches or More

In spite of the long, narrow figures in 1920s fashion illustrations, twenties dress patterns were usually available in bust sizes 33 to 44 inches – the equivalent of a modern size 22. Butterick routinely issued patterns even larger than 44.  The gorgeous evening dress above, pictured in gold metallic brocade, is sized 36 to 48. More about it later….

Body Measurements from a Butterick Pattern Envelope, 1927

This chart is on the back of a pattern envelope from 1927:

Butterick Pattern Envelope, 1927

Butterick Pattern Envelope, 1927

A woman with a 32″ bust was expected to have 35″ hips; a 38″ bust had 40 ½” hips; and a size 44 was assumed to have 47 ½” hips – and the pattern mentions “outlet seams” which can add another inch and  a half if necessary.

Surplice Styles Flattering to Larger Women

As you can imagine, 1920s fashions which drew a horizontal line across the widest part of a woman’s body were not necessarily flattering — especially to a woman with 49″ hips. With that in mind, the editors of Delineator Magazine often recommended a surplice line dress for larger women. 1929 jan p 26 surplice“There is no line more flattering to mature figures than the surplice closing, especially when it is softened by a scalloped and frilled lingerie collar. The straight skirt is gathered to a girdle that ties snugly….Designed for [bust] 34 to 48.”

The ‘surplice line’ meant that there was a design line, often the front closing, that ran diagonally from one shoulder to the opposite hip. Draped fabric falling from that point – as in the gold evening gown, #1187 below – carries the eye down, rather than across the body.

Two 1926 Evening Gowns for Size 48 Bust Patterns 1195, 1187 together

1926 dec p 47 #1195 for 48 bustFrock #1195: Draperies that develop wing-like properties in motion fly from the shoulder and hip of a Paris evening gown. The frock that composes itself entirely of Georgette, lace, or crépe de chine is the most useful kind of evening dress. In this particular frock the bloused body is sewed to a one-piece slip and the lower edge of the tunic [sic] is straight….For women 32 to 48 bust. [Controlling the blouson top by attaching the sheer outer layer to a slip makes the dress much easier to wear. The slip – with its straight hem – is visible below the asymmetrical hem of the dress. Such a slip would be made in a color to match the dress, and the silk used for the slip might also bind the neckline.]

1926 dec #1187 fits 36 to 48 bust

Gown #1187: “Uneven lies the hem of the Paris gown intended for formal day or evening use. The long V line of the surplice closing, the tight drapery at the hip and the free drapery at the side have reducing properties. The gown itself is in one-piece style and so is the separate slip. An extra slip with sleeves for afternoon, make[s] two gowns. Size 36 will need 2 5/8 yards of metallic brocade 40 inches wide. Designed for women 36 to 48 bust.” [The version illustrated is an evening gown. An under-dress ‘slip’ with a higher neckline and sleeves, often of sheer fabric trimmed with the dress fabric, would make it modest enough for afternoon tea dances, etc.]

Mature Elegance in a Surplice Evening Gown1929 feb p 89 lucky ad middle aged woman

Elsie de Wolfe, Noted Interior Decorator (and about 63 years old at the time of this February ad) wears an evening dress very similar to Butterick #1187 in an advertisement for Lucky Strike Cigarettes, 1929. She is quoted as saying, “I recommend a Lucky instead of a sweet… an excellent substitute when your appetite craves a sweet but your figure must be considered.” [The ad goes on to say that “A reasonable proportion of sugar in the diet is recommended, but the authorities are overwhelming that too many fattening sweets are harmful. So, for moderation’s sake we say: – ‘Reach for a Lucky instead of a sweet!’ “]

Surplice Line Dresses for Young Women and Teens, January 1929
1929 jan p 29 rt

The surplice style was not limited to older women or those who had to “consider” their figures. Butterick pattern #2397, “a very informal afternoon frock for winter resorts, [was] designed for sizes 32 to 37, 15 to 20 years, and for [ladies with bust measurement of] 38, 40.” The dress next to it, #2424, is also for teens “15 to 18 years and [women bust] 36 to 44 [inches.]” A dress pattern for size 18 years had a 35 inch bust, but was proportioned for a smaller person. 1920s pattern descriptions often say “15 to 20 and smaller women.” Butterick Patterns for women who were both short and stout did not become available until the 1930s, as far as I have seen — but I’m still looking.

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