Saturday, August 01, 2009

Housedresses from the Twenties

I had never looked to the twenties for sewing inspiration, until this week when I saw these pages from
Everyday Fashions of the Twenties As Pictured in Sears and Other Catalogs
. As usual, it's not the fancy stuff I'm drawn to, but the things that women actually wore in their homes. These are amazing!

This first picture is from 1920. Look how comfortable these dresses appear! The waistlines are just about at the natural waist, and not too tight or too loose. I love the detailing--that second dress has a bias-cut center panel, sash, and pockets. Several of them have decorative buttons.


Then from 1921, this collection. These are even better. Love the emphasis on the center panel in almost every dress. In each one, the plaid or gingham is used to great effect by being turned on the bias for cuffs, pocket trim, or sash. The left-hand dress has a lace-trimmed collar finished with a black velveteen bow and a pearl buckle! Love the third from the left, with the graceful spread square collar. and look at the fourth from the left. It's described as a "kitchen dress"--clearly as plain as it gets--but it's still trimmed generously with rickrack and I love the neckline inserts. The dress on the right? Double collar and cuffs are organdy trimmed with bias fabric! Please let me order one!


In 1922 the waist starts to drop but the dresses are still so cheery and comfortable. I love the plays of gingham against solid in the upper left dress and the lower right. Look at the fantastic braid trim on the lower left dress! And the scalloped sash of the fourth from the left on top!


Dresses from 1923. Love the wide sashes passing through contrasting beltloops. The sleeves are all practical and elbow-length (great for porch or morning!). Dress in the bottom row has a built-in scalloped apron panel both front and back, how great is that?


I love these with affection unspeakable and will be hunting out patterns to see if I can't create some of this charm in my sewing room.

21 comments:

Regan Family Farm said...

Oh to have the time to sit and sew some of these heirlooms! My grandma would smile...
Blessings~
Kathy

Anonymous said...

I love those dresses too.. and I know I saw patterns for them somewhere and wanted then to make myself some, but had no money at the time... I looked quickly at Past Patterns - looks like there are a couple of similar patterns, but I only did a very quick look.
http://www.pastpatterns.com/1920.html

But it seems like there was a pattern out there with several variations. I would love to know what you find on your search!

Having trouble posting coments at the moment.. have to go anonymous route..

Willowcaroline
http://willowcaroline.wordpress.com/

Andrea R said...

Try Folkwear patterns as well.

Shelley said...

This is terrible / wonderful! I've gone and bought the book from Amazon -- you're very infectious, you know! I know fashions from my teen years are very in just now, but of course I look ridiculous in them. Far better to hark back to before I was born for inspiration.

♥ Stevi said...

I found this seller that has a few vintage patterns (20s thru 70s). Prices look reasonable- I have never ordered from this seller though. Does anyone know how the directions are for a 1920's pattern?

http://aneclecticscollection.ecrater.com/category.php?cid=243580&srn=0

dale said...

Are these not the most exquisite "porch" dresses you have ever seen??? And those prices..
Surely hope you create one of these real soon.
How did they get any work done in these dresses is my question!!!

Lisateresa said...

Well, good luck, Anna! These are very interesting to look at; especially the early '20's, the styles of which time I was unfamiliar with.

Linda said...

I think I like the 1921 dresses the best. If only we could buy them at 1920's prices - for, alas, I don't sew. I love every other kind of needlework, but sewing somehow eludes me.
I can't wait to see what you will do with these!

YayaOrchid said...

I can hardly wait to see what you make from that time period. Whatever it is, I'm sure it will look lovely on you and will be sure to inspire me to want to sew something similar, LOL! But then everything looks great on you!

Anne said...

I just found your blog and have been reading all day. I looked around my place and realized that it wasn't simple and beautiful like your place is. So I'm off - you have inspired me!

pfarmwife said...

Well, Anna, if you do find patterns, please let us know! I love the ones in the first photo especially...remind me of what Mrs. Walton would wear...and I certainly would love to make some, too!

Warmly,
Stacey
www.whatsoever-things.blogspot.com
www.providencefarmva.blogspot.com
www.goodprovidentially.blogspot.com

Anonymous said...

I thought I would let you know about an eBay seller who is auctioning a number of these slightly dropped-waist patterns. I think she found a huge lot of them somewhere. If you don't see what you like now, it's worth checking back. She's been going through them for some time: http://shop.ebay.com/merchant/memara_W0QQ_nkwZQQ_armrsZ1Q_fromZQQ_ipgZ

...they call me mommy... said...

Love, love old patterns! Especially pioneer type ones and aprons...thanks for sharing!

I just found your blog today! LOVELY!!! Definitely a keeper! Thanks! :)

nrg said...

I do love these. I wonder about the shape, though, as ladies did not wear bras in the 20s.

Ruth said...

http://shop.ebay.com/merchant/memara_W0QQ_nkwZQQ_armrsZ1QQ_fromZQQ_ipgZ

This seller has lots of patterns from the late teens/20s, VERY inexpensive. Larger sizes, 20 and 40. I've bought a few Pictorial Review patterns and they seem very straightforward.

Sharon said...

How fun! Those are beautiful :)

Shelley in SC said...

It's fun to see how the styles changed in just a few brief years! I love these vintage dresses. They gave an elegance and softness to the profession of housewifery!

VRM said...

Quite lovely. I have some friends who wear 20s dresses for historical interpretation purposes. They tend to be very comfortable, thanks to their straight lines.

MVB said...

I just found this book at Amazon--one of three republished by a company called Bramstock: http://www.amazon.com/Hour-Dress-Easy-Vintage-Designs/dp/1934268666/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1249336890&sr=1-3
They have other books, too, about millinery and hairstyles of this period. What fun it would be to take a simple style and embellish it with collars, cuffs, and trimmings!

Anna said...

Thank you all for the great resources! I think I'm going to find what I need!

Caroline said...

Those are just swoony! I love the old cuts of dresses from the 20's and 30's.

Related Posts with Thumbnails