Tuesday, 27 March 2012

200 followers giveaway :o)

Can’t believe that we have over 200 likes on our Facebook page, 208 to be precise, – very pleased there are so many people who are interested in what we do :o)

As a thank you to all you lovely people, we’re having a little giveaway. 

On offer is a copy of Mike Brown’s brilliant book “The 1940’s Look” which we picked up at the vintage fair, a brand new Sew and Save tin (full of needles/threads/tape measure etc) and one of my handmade anemone corsages :o)

You can have up to three entries for the giveaway.  Here’s how;

1.  Comment on this post
2.  Pop over to my Facebook page and like the wall post with the competition photograph on
3.  Share this post, either in your own blog (please message me if you do) or by   sharing the Facebook link

The giveaway is open to all UK and overseas followers and will close at 10pm BST on Good Friday (6th April), the winner will be announced over the Easter Weekend.

Good luck :o)

Sunday, 25 March 2012

Little Vintage Lover - Blakeney

Last Sunday, Mother’s Day, we headed to the Little Vintage Lover fair in Blakeney, our first event of 2012. 

We weren’t really very well prepared; things had conspired against us the previous week, but, never ones to give up, we packed the van the day before and set the alarm for 5am – getting out of my nice warm bed was a real struggle!  Heading off in the dark (I was pleased it was dark because it meant the neighbours couldn’t see my bonce full of heated rollers, painstakingly put in at 5.05am!) and rain, I tried to catch 40 winks while Mr Y did the driving :o)  We managed to arrive on time but Mum and Dad (with the stock!!) got lost on the way, something which isn’t actually uncommon – sorry Mum if you read this!! :o) 

Set up was more than a little flustered.  We were up on the stage area and almost everyone else was set up – so embarrassing!  However, we managed to keep calm and carry on and the stall was set up by 9.30am.  What do you think?? 

The weather wasn’t kind to us to begin with.  Despite our best little sun dance on the Saturday, none appeared until lunch time, and even then it was still darn chilly!!  However, poor weather, getting lost and the pants week put aside, we actually had a good time.  The other stallholders are lovely and it was great to catch up with those that we hadn’t seen since last year.  It was also good to see some of our regular customers – which is always nice!  The turn out was good and some people had really dressed to impress. 

Looking at the stock of the brilliant Dead Mens Spex :o)

We sold one of my all time favourite dresses.  Not strictly my preferred era, it was a 1950’s cotton dress and I LOVED IT!!  We bought it in perfect condition, complete with original buttons.  It’s beautifully made and the colours are so bright and lovely.  The new owner looked fabulous in it and although I took a picture of the lovely lady wearing it, I promised that she wouldn’t be identified so, true to my word, here’s the picture, minus the head! 

New owner, if you are reading this and are happy to have the full shot used, just let me know :o)

These 3 jumpers found new homes.

I was very restrained and only came away with these 2 1940's patterns.

Mr Y and the little Y’s had gone to off to Hunstanton Sea Life Centre for the day!  Knowing we wouldn’t’ be together for Mother’s Day, we’d celebrated the day before and I was presented with 2 lovely handmade cards and these 2 beautiful 1940’s brooches to add to my ever growing collection. 


Some exciting news in the pipe line!  After meeting a very nice lady at the fair, I received a VERY exciting email about my corsages!  I won’t jinx it by letting the cat out of the bag just yet but fingers crossed all goes to plan so I can share it with you :o)

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

My Nan - the Land Girl!

I’ve had a ridiculously pants few days.  Things totally out of my control have got me down, and the post that I had wanted to do on March 15th is being done late and I don’t like it when things don’t go to plan.

However, I’ve finally found time, and energy, to get this together.  No vintage finds, no new makes, just a photo heavy post in remembrance of my brilliant Nan, who would have been 90 last week.

Born at White House farm, Pettistree in 1922, Nan was only 17 when war broke out.  Being a farmer’s daughter, she chose to join the Women’s Land Army.  She worked on the farm for the duration of the war, her older brother serving in the Royal Navy.

I always remember being told how hard work on the farm was, but how she loved it.  White House was a mixed dairy and arable farm and at just 18, Nan was working alongside the older farmhands, the younger ones having gone into the services; she soon learnt to stand up to them!

Being born and raised on the farm, becoming a Land Girl seemed only right, but she was thankful that she didn’t have to relocate miles from home, like many Land Girls had to do. 

Working in the Land Army gave Nan a life long love of the countryside and as children, she taught us a lot about the world around us.  It was in recognition of my Nan’s life during WW2 that my Mum chose to re-enact WLA at 1940’s events.  Nan was proud of her contribution to the war effort, and it was in memory of her and all the other land girls that Mum donned her dungarees and set out to find out as much as she could about the WLA, in order to portray their role as accurately and respectfully as possible.

Goodness knows what my Nan would have said if she could have seen us now! 

My Nan, the Land Girl.

The White House
The first photograph we have, aged 2.

The hot house seems to have been a favourite photo spot :o)

Confirmation day :o)

The hot house again :o)  Nan with her father and brother, home on leave from the Navy.

In uniform :o)

Post war, with some of the other Land |Girls.

My favourite photograph of my Nan, 1949.

A day on the beach with my Mum, c1954 - love the dress!!

My Nan, 1922-2008

Sunday, 11 March 2012

Pretty in pink!

Don’t you just love spring?  The weather has been lovely today and we’ve had lots of sunshine here in Suffolk,  such a change from last weekend!  I hope you’ve been enjoying good weather wherever you are.

Today is all about my newest finished jumper, previously blogged about here.  A commission from a lady I met at the Ramsey 1940’s event last year.  It’s finally finished and she’s been very patient!!!

Wool was provided by the customer, a soft merino which was lovely to work with but it was unbranded so I can’t track down the manufacturer!!

Here's a close-up of the design.

The pattern repeat spreads across 12 rows.  It's not as hard as it sounds but you have to follow the pattern the entire time - no watching TV and knitting for me on this one! 

I’ve used this pattern before, here, following it exactly and I made a few adjustments this time round.  The original called for an 18” placket to be knitted separately and then stitched on to the front, but I didn’t like the finish and so incorporated the additional stitches when I knitted the fronts.  I also knitted the collar separately because then there’s no worry about making sure I’ve picked up evenly around the neckline which is harder than it might sound.

I found these beautiful buttons on eBay. 

I adore these original 1930’s buttons from France.  They’re small, about the size of a 5 pence piece, and have an etched design round the edge.  Tricky little blighters to photograph and I’m not able to get a really good shot, sorry.  When they arrived, I was over the moon but was then faced with the issue any vintage lover has – such lovelies deserve to be preserved on their card and admired, not used!  Perfect solution??  Buy a second set!  One to be used, one to be admired!! 

The set on the right arrived with 2 chipped ones and a cracked one which I was miffed about but it did make cutting them off less of a wrench! 

Following are lots of photographs of the jumper - sorry, I got a bit snap happy!!

All pressed and ready to start

I use safety pins to join the two pieces exactly before I take out the needle and thread.

All done!

This jumper isn’t going anywhere just yet because I have another to knit for the same customer but things have halted on that front for the minute because a shoulder injury means no knitting for a week – eek, I don’t know what I’ll do!!! 

Some of this week will be spent sorting things out for our first event of 2012.  It’s organised by Little Vintage Lover and is in Blakeney, North Norfolk– we’re hoping for some more sunshine!

Monday, 5 March 2012


Well hasn’t the weather changed?  This time last week we were basking in the sunshine, my girlie's donning their skirts and t-shirts, this week, it’s all about vests and jumpers!  We’re having a home day today, snuggled up in the warm, away from the rain and blustery weather.  It’s the perfect day to take a look at some of my 1940’s Hollywood sewing patterns, guaranteed to put a smile on my face :o)

Hollywood patterns went into production in 1932, the creation of Conte Nast.  The patterns became popular due to photographs of radio and film stars gracing the covers.  They continued to be manufactured throughout WW2, a red star in the left corner of the cover denotes a wartime issue.   They had a relatively short run with manufacture ceasing in 1947.  The short run, coupled with the link to film stars, means these patterns are considered, by some, to be highly collectible - I just bought them because I love them :o)

From a “star” point of view, my collection includes Shirley Patterson, Ann Sheridan, Maureen O’Hara, June Havoc, Olympe Bradna, Lola Lane, Sharon Douglas and Franciska Gaal.  Do these ring any bells with you?  I confess that the only one I’d ever heard of was Lola Lane
– note to self – must watch more 1940’s films!! :o)

In total, I have 16, all bought from America and, more importantly, all complete.  Some are in pretty delicate condition with seriously tatty covers but I love them all the same.  My favourites are the two wartime ones.

I found a lot of my information about Hollywood patterns on this website.  If sewing patterns are you thing, then this site is worth a look. 

Some of the patterns I have are for a trim 30” bust!  Hmm, not in my house, I think those patterns will remain in my collection to be admired only!  However, I do want to give one of the patterns a go so I’ve lined up this one as my first to tackle.

I hope to use this fabric that I bought from America a couple of years ago.

I bought it from America a couple of years ago (and was stung for import tax!!!!!).  It’s a reproduction of a 1930’s print.  The design is really small and neat which makes it a lot easier for fabric matching.  When (if) the dress is done, I’ll be certain to show you!! 

Hope you’re all staying warm wherever you are :o)