Friday, 3 February 2012

How You Look and Dress.

I have a new book! Well, technically it is an old book as it was printed in 1959. I love the fashions and the look of the 1950s. The full skirts, tiny waists, pretty cardigans and matching handbags and gloves. Oh and hats! 

This book covers an amazing number of topics! From grooming and clothing care to how to match colours and using a sewing machine. It was a school textbook and it must have been lovely to learn all about clothes and making clothing while young. 

The book introduction says 

"The objectives of this book are:

To arouse a real interest in clothing.
To develop good habits in work and orderliness.
To create a desire for attractive personal appearance. 
To stimulate a pride in neat sewing by hand.
To stress the importance of accuracy in taking measurements.
To make for a better understanding of fabrics in general.
To cultivate the ability to plan for and make simple garments. 
To encourage an interest in the remodelling and repair of clothing."

I wish I could make clothing! I think it would be a wonderful skill to have. I plan on learning to sew soon then I will be able to create all the designs I have in my mind. There are even vintage sewing patterns for sale from the 1950s!  

I love the emphasis on the waist! It is a very feminine look in my opinion. Nothing is too obvious and it is classy rather than trashy. Such a ladylike look! Neat as a pin and stylish too. 

I love the dresses shown above! I am a big fan of white collars on dresses! They look so bright and fresh. As the book is aimed at students, the outfits are practical and comfortable. The kind of outfit you put on in a morning and then don't have to think about all day. 

"For lounging, most girls prefer housecoats because they can be worn for working around the house as well as for lounging." I never thought I would say this but I want a housecoat! Why not wear something pretty and neat for housework. 

I am looking forward to sitting down and reading though this book. I am sure it will contain many snippets for useful information. A wonderful addition to my collection of 1950s books! 



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  1. I was born in the very early fifties and remember my mother wearing dresses like the one on the cover of your book. I think the style is called a 'shirtwaist'. One my mother had was made of the most beautiful fabric; it was in all colors of the rainbow and sort of like the batik fabrics I see in quilt shops but the pattern was like the rose windows on the great cathedrals. I loved that dress :-)
    I had an outfit like the red dress. We call it a jumper which here is not a knitted garment but a dress that has no sleeves and is worn with a blouse or shirt underneath. Mine was a red quilted material and the top part unbuttoned from the skirt and both were reversible with plain red on one side and a check pattern on the other. I really liked that outfit too :-)

  2. How refreshing! I just love the modest, yet beautiful clothing in the pictures!

    1. I love this type of book! Who is the author?

  3. How fun! I like reading these kind of old books, too. I hope you will learn how to sew, Jenny. It is such fun to make your own clothes. Maybe there would be someone who could work with you? I hope so. Good luck with that goal!

  4. The book is by Byrta Carson! I do have a few books from the 1950s though.I also have one by John Robert Powers and it is based around his model school!