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Saturday, February 16, 2013

I Love Sewing, Clothing Design and Needlework

And hopefully I'll soon be in a position where I may again indulge my passion for sewing, needlework and design.

The thing is, shearling skins are readily available here (at about $100 per pelt, so not very cheap regardless); and they make the warmest of all materials for coats, hats, mittens, etc.  Not only is it warm, but the leather blocks the wind very nicely.  However, until I can afford to buy or make some clothing from shearling, I'll have to be content with my down coats.
Also, it looks like special machinery might be needed to make really fine garments from shearling.

A program for generating stripe patterns for knitting and crochet projects.

Fashionable way to tie a knot.

Antique lace as used in interior decoration.
Teneriffe Lace Work, c1920
A book on basic tailoring for women's wear.
Most people made their own patterns in those days.
Tailoring for men in c1844
Men's tailoring, c1873
Proper measurement is very important, c1906
Breakdown of clothing manufacturing shop management, c1920
Professional pattern cutting, very good diagrams, c1895
Wages in the tailoring industry, 1915
Home Dressmaker's Guide, 1915

Parisian Ladies' Tailoring System, c1917
The American Designer and Cutter (Patternmaking), c1915
c1921 Sewing Book -- great era.
c1914, pattern drafting.

Basic instructions, how-to.
Granny Hat
Lace edgings
Fancy crocheted lace short sleeves.
Lace collar
D'Oyley (c1854)
Some shawls, scarves
Tatted and crocheted lace
I call it "Battenberg Lace crochet"
c1883, with instructions for how to make a Hammock
Priscilla Filet Crochet Book No. 1, c1915
Very sweet, c1916
c1800, French
c1915, lace handkerchiefs
c1885, Crocheted Braids, edgings
Priscilla No. 2, c1914
Priscilla Centrepieces and Doilies
Priscilla Netting
Irish style crocheted lace, c1910
Household items, c1900
Bags, novelties, small items, c1912
c1899, Art Nouveau cover.
Encyclopedic text, c1844
c1923, Flapper era styles
Maltese crochet, c1915
Fancy Table Linens, c1915

Beautiful cover, c1847

Scotch Linen crochet thread, c1886
Corset covers and nightgown yokes.
c1915, the "Hug-me-tite" vest is really cute; lots of nice little items.
Easy beginner projects.
Priscilla c1908
c1912, net crochet, beadwork, cross-stitch
Pineapple designs.
c1846 D'Oyleys (doilies)
c1916 Princess Yokes

c April 1864, Godey's Lady Book (now I see why they were so popular).
January 1864 (they even have house plans).
February 1864
March 1864
May 1864
June 1864
July 1864
August 1864
September 1864
October 1864
November 1864
December 1864
January - June, 1880
July 1863
Peterson's Jan-June, 1888
Peterson's July-Dec, 1888
March 1883
June 1883

Hooked rugs, c1899 (French language)
Irish Crochet, c1900 (French language)
How to make Lace

Patternmaking instructions.

Paris Fashion from 1908, exquisite designs.
c1926, such a glamorous era.
Hatmaking and Felting
Color Harmony and Design in Dress

Drawings and Diagrams from the c1912 book linked above

Fabrics and Textiles for Clothing Design, c1921
Secrets of Distinctive Dress (with photos of celebrities), c1918
Textiles and Costume Design, c1917
Instructive Costume Design, c1922
Beautifully illustrated, c1918
Costume Design and Home Planning, c1916

From Costume Design and Home Planning, c1916

Art in Costume Design, c1920

From Art in Costume Design, c1920

Back of a Watteau style gown, alongside period Gentlemen's attire

Cottage and Farmhouse Furniture, with a chapter on Chintzes
William Morris prints.
Eighteenth century Japanese textiles.
Toiles (French language); need to try to find good images for the missing examples.
Another good French language book on the subject of Toiles, missing images; try the Harvard Fine Arts Library.

Patternmaking instructions for Ladies underwear, lingerie.
Catalog of Ladies' and Children's undergarments, 1884
1895 Catalog, Lilliputian Bazaar

Knitwear fabric facts.

Vintage Tents, etc., 1917

FREE Patterns.
More FREE Patterns.

Chats on Costume
Chats on Old Lace and Needlework
A fabulous book on the history of costume or attire.
Costume design and illustration
Glasgow school of art collection of exquisite color plate illustrations
English Costume, beautifully illustrated in color.
Tudor and Stuart
Middle Ages
Early English

Theatrical Costume, French language (there are scores of these, all very finely illustrated in color)
Costume of the Ancients, volume 1 (c1809)
volume 2
Instructive Costume Design (very good)
A VALUABLE SOURCE OF FOLK PATTERNS (I've been searching for these for years).
Costume of the American Colonial era.
European Peasant attire
French language
Rare bookplate

The Bankside Costume Book
N. American Indians
British Costume, complete history
From the Conquest to the Regency period
No costume is complete without shoes.
Quaker attire
Antique Spanish jewelry.
Egyptian attire, French language, great endpapers on this book

French attire, French language
Beautiful color engravings
French attire, French language

A goldmine of free patterns.
History of the Scottish Paisley Shawl.

People on Facebook share lots of great links.
Great idea for a little, lightweight, urban backpack.

Some free, complimentary patterns.

Knitting increase stitch tutorial (inc 1).

Antique Hand-woven coverlets.  In the first apartment I ever rented, which was nicely furnished, a beautiful indigo blue coverlet was included in the deal.

Yarn-over Lace knitting tutorial.
Free pattern for a lace shawl.

Pineapple lace topper.
Lace top
Lace tops
Granny square handbag
Nicer dishcloth
Great pattern + great blog
Lace headscarf
Red Heart yarn company has lots of free patterns here.
Great ideas for crocheted or knit garments
Crocheted jewelry designs.
Shawl pattern
Lace edgings
A terrific collection of lace designs
Great collection of patterns
Crocheted accessories

Cascade yarn company
Booties and stuff

This book is a treasure!

All kinds of antiques
"Netten" (Lace)

Calico textiles, dying technology.
Fascinating late 18th century Treatise on the subject of printing Calico fabric.
I get such a kick out of discovering old books, especially those which cover subjects that interest me.


Bear Brand Cro-Knitting; very unusual, interesting cover and photography.
Spool-knitting; another unique type of needlework.
Nice cover.
The Science of Knitting
Very practical designs; survival gear.
Priscilla designs (the Hug-Me-Tight looks very easy to make and practical too).

Published by Woolworth
Knitwear for a doll, lol.
Great patterns, sweet cover.
Truly fabulous book; art nouveau cover; amazing color illustrations
Cost estimation for industry

Peasant head-dresses from the Pennsylvania museum.
Peasant head-dresses, Pennsylvania museum.
c1842 system for cutting dress patterns.
Volumes 1 & 2; richly illustrated in color.
Beautifully illustrated in color.
Pattern drafting techniques.
A few good pointers, perhaps.

Great illustrations in color.

Hairnet Crochet pattern from Godey's Lady

Page two of the Hairnet patterns

Russian style vest or jacket

Scottish style dress

Crocheted Watch Pocket

Crocheted Cover for a Birdcage (might be adaptable for a lampshade, too)

Page two of the Crocheted Birdcage Cover


Crocheted "Tidy"

Directions for the "Tidy"
Page two of directions for the Crocheted "Tidy" (a 'tidy' is a cloth to throw over furniture, etc.)

Rosette (I have something similar, which was made into a little pillow cover)

Pattern drafting technique for women's foundation garments or underwear.  I would rather wear homemade underclothes, can't stand the store-bought selection.

Different types of knit fabrics.
I think I already have this link, not sure.

Gorgeous gowns, from a period that is one of my favorites.


 This yardage guide is for yarn.
Standard Blanket measurements

Typical Mattress dimensions

Standard Measurements for Children's Headwear

Standard Measurements
A way to recycle T-shirts
Old Crochet pattern
Excellent manual for hatmaking.

Crocheted Lace Box design

Handwritten lacemaking instructions, c1859
Detailed techniques

Hand made Lace

Includes Lacemaking.
Lots of lace and accessories.
French language; charming marbled cover.
Smocking is a very valuable skill to learn.

Housekeeping; the old ways of doing things may just make a comeback.
Explains how to make a simple Kimono Blouse <3

Volumes 1,2,3,4,5,6

The first number is the Natural Waist Length
Second number is the Back Depth
Third number is the Underarm Length

French Silk Floral Prints

I have a very pretty Japanese Silk Screen picture of Mt. Fuji and a Shinto Garden

Crocheted Lace Skirt pattern.
Eva's Shawl; may be made with any materials, any gauge -- just stop when it gets big enough.
An extensive catalogue of Stitch Patterns.
Tranquil Tank Top pattern.
Farmer's Market Tote Bag (knit)

List of free vintage patterns
Lace Bib
Crochet a Sun Hat with crepe paper!
Finally found a pattern for a Bed Jacket.
Vintage 1970's Gypsy Tank Top Dress.
20 Free, Lacy crochet Skirt patterns... I like the short ones and very lacy ones for wearing over shorts in Summer.

Lace Baby Bonnets
Long Granny Square Vest (maybe adaptable to making a dress).
Long Skirt in Granny Squares
Granny Square Shawl

Bernina Swiss quality sewing machines.

Sewn Wallets
Baby Quilt (52" square, finished).

A machine-knitted tank top; no pattern available

(See list of favorite blogs)

Very nice free sewing patterns for knitwear.

This detail, plus the two Cloches shown below, are examples of French style handwork with insertions, lace, tucks, ribbons, beads, etc.

French Blue Cloche

Gold Cloche

A very simple design concept for a halter top (worn over a slip or tank top, of course).  One could make it in lace, as shown here; or, one could simply drape a scarf in the same manner.

A very elegant vintage design for an Evening Halter Top

Apron Halter Top

Matching Bandeau and Shrug

Bikini Halter Top with long Fringe

Oval Apron Halter Top

Shell style Tunic

Child's Patchwork Skirt

A perennial favorite, Grandmother's Flower Garden (Hexagon patches)

Reversible Patchwork Table Cover, may be themed seasonally

Knit and Crocheted Coffee Cozies

A Knit Bonnet (Felt or Crochet would also work for this)

Ribbon and Sewing Notions Organizer, made with Trouser / Pants Hanger, Etc.

Is that a cat rolling on top of the socks, lol?  This is a great idea, cut the socks into loops and make rugs with them.

Tibetan Robe or Jacket

Authentic Vintage Japanese Kimono Design

Simple Folk Cape

Gown, ca. 1912

Kimono Pattern, Folk style

Crochet ideas

Cluster Stitch Shell

This pattern is also called "Fish-scales" -- it looks a bit like "Leaves", too.

(this pattern is for the previous image)

This would be adaptable to many uses.

I think the potential is there for a Baby Blanket or Summer Shawl, Hat

Essentially, you can make a shrug similar to this design using any piece of stretchy knit or lace fabric (either handmade, recycled, or newly purchased) measuring approximately 36" x 14" (rectangular).  Then, seam up the sides approximately 8" for the sleeves.  Then single crochet or whatever your choice of edge treatment for the body and / or sleeves.

The instructions given here, call for use of super-bulky weight Bamboo fiber yarn and a size 8mm ( L ) crochet hook.  Start off by chaining 93 (to equal about 36") in the gauge given ( 10dc and 5 rows = 4" ).

1st Row:  1 dc in 4th ch  and  every other  ch  to end ( 91 sts )

2nd Row:  (Chain 4, turn) * 1 dc in next ch-1 sp, ch 1 * repeat until last 2 dc (then ch 1, sk next dc, 1 dc in last dc)

3rd Row:  (Chain 3, turn) * 1 dc in next ch-1 sp, ch 1 * repeat until ending with 1 dc in last dc

Repeat Rows 2 and 3 until piece measures approximately 14" (ending on a 2nd Row)

Alternatively, just make any mesh or lacey fabric either in this pattern stitch or in your own choice of pattern stitch, to the specified dimensions.

This technique would lend itself well to any sort of filet type of design.  Would adapt very nicely for a textured Baby Blanket, Cape, or Afghan.

FREE crafting classes.

Nice color, unusual technique (hairpin lace?)

A very delicate looking pattern stitch.

Colonial American men's costume

1940s era
A book full of graphics
Very basic sewing course, with small handbag project designs and instructions.

1960s Abba (Middle Eastern Caftan)
Authentic Flapper style dress pattern, vintage

1920s Art Deco style Bra

Phelps-Jacobs Bra Patent specs (pre-1920s Era)

Wrap-around Camisole style Bra, from around the same time

A Recycling project, using a menswear shirt.
Would work well with any deeply napped fabric.  I like the 'belt' or 'sash' idea, too.
I think maybe some heavier silk, perhaps a damask, might be nice in combination with the denim fabric.  Or, a cotton fabric with that same sort of hand.
Pillowcases are just the right size for a small dress, and already pre-hemmed.  Patterns are available for simple pillowcase aprons, too.
Recycling project, using a t-shirt.
Stretch knit fabric work best for this skirt.
Simple yet elegant.
I don't care for the look of this garment, but the techniques used on it are fine.

I'll never buy a ready-made or mass produced manufactured purse ever again.  It's just too easy to make your own, and even if you couldn't find a good pattern for one, it's easy enough just to wing it.
If you want to dress up an ordinary tank top with a little bit of class, here's an idea.
Any napped fabric would suffice for this.
Fabric Ruffles and Roses dress up boring accessories.
I would use these to embellish dresses, hats, blouses...
I love this idea, very cute.
Sweet pattern / tutorial for a Sun Hat... "Start out by measuring your head size and replicate it on the fabric.  To create a perfect circle divide the circumference of your head to 3.14 and then again to 2 to get the radius of the circle.  Then mark the center of the circle on your fabric and with a ruler draw the circle.  Think how big you want the brim to be and draw another circle around the first one."


So now the Western Band of Cherokee are claiming that their man, Wendell Cochran, invented the Cherokee Tear dress style, lol.  Nice way to re-write history; I get so sick of it.  To begin with, idiots misinterpret history (i.e. melodramatically presuming that "Tear dress" was in reference to the Trail of Tears in the first place, instead of to the actual method of clothing production utilized by our grandmothers -- which any real Cherokee who actually had a true Indian grandmother should have known); then they feel compelled re-write it altogether.  Even they admit that they acted in an effort to uniformly standardize the "official" Cherokee Costume for Women.  Something which true Cherokee women never sought to accomplish, although they did have some preferred, favorite ways of doing things, such as when making their own clothing.

It's more accurate to state that Mr. Cochran merely refined a traditional pattern, or patterns (plural), and a style of dress which the Cherokee women had been commonly producing themselves for a very long time.  My own gg-grandmother (full-blooded Cherokee) was wearing a similar style, in Calico fabric, in an old photograph that I've seen.  Hers was much simpler -- she left off all the fancy ribbonwork from her dress; and I actually like hers much better than this type shown here.  This actually looks more like it is influenced by the Plains Indian tribes, and I don't really care to be associated with them, being that I am a proud Easterner (no offense, it's just me).  I also detect some influence from the traditional costumes of Western Pioneer women of European ancestry.  It looks much like a Prairie dress, in fact.

I wish that I had my grandmother's portrait now, to publish here and show people what a true Cherokee woman looked like in those days.  She and her simple dress were very lovely, very charming.

On the other hand, I'm not saying that I hate this dress style shown here; just that I plan to make mine a bit differently, put my own 'signature' or 'brand' on it.  One thing that might be said about real Cherokee women:  we are not just blind, conformist sheep; we are rather original thinkers and very creative.  Cherokees have historically always loved innovation, and have always been quite open-minded toward ideas from other cultures and / or individuals... which is one reason why we had never adopted a uniform "traditional" costume (until recently, that is).

However, it cannot be denied that Cherokee women were in the habit of creating their own clothing patterns.  And their usual method was to measure (often with string, or whatever; not necessarily with a marked tape measure) their body proportions, then to tear the fabrics rather than cut them with scissors.  That's because most of them were too poor to buy such superfluous sewing notions as scissors and measuring tapes.

MAIN PAGE Vintage Patterns Wiki.

Nancy Zieman's Pillowcase child's dress tutorial, patterns.

Hobo Tote bag.
A classy looking Florida Tote bag.
She calls it a Wristlet, but it's really more like a casual Clutch bag.

Sewing tips for Piping.
Sewing tips for Laminated fabrics.

Adorable Pin Cushion (Pineapple Patchwork)

Every time I think I have enough... I find more treasure!

I'd like to make my own tights, since the good ones are expensive and the cheap (i.e. synthetic) ones suck.

There should be a free copy somewhere for this.

Free patterns, including a vintage pattern for a bra (not the one shown above).

Close up detail of the crochet technique

Basic Triangles which might work for Bra tops


  1. · ...

  2. Okay, thanks. The first link is dead (I removed it for you). The second link is fine if you click on it within my post here (the version you provide in your comment is no good, however). So I left the second link alone. The third link is nowhere to be found in my post (and it's spammy, and I don't understand why you included it here).

  3. I guess Schubert is a spammer, apparently.