My Grandma's copy of
Sewing Made Easy 1960-ish
This book sat on my shelf for the longest time never being looked at. I had professional books on couture and construction and pattern making and fitting and tailoring and draping, and so on and so on. I naively thought there was nothing in this book but how to sew curtains and maybe a house dress.
When i finally got around to looking at it I found out that nearly every topic mentioned above was all within the covers of this one book. And i had spent all that money buying "professional" books. Silly Kat.
Not only does it have chapters on pattern, construction, tailoring, a dictionary of stitches, fabrics, cutting, altering (patterns and pre-made clothes),
but it had fun stuff like building a wardrobe, which includes notes on what kinds of clothes you need and for what occasion; how a dress can be modified to go from day to night, the kind of shoes a woman should have in her closet, how to be your own stylist, and fun projects like the make your own turban pictured below.
It's really interesting to get an intimate view into the mind of a stylish woman from the 1960s, and maybe not that surprisingly, she is not so different from women today, nor is the advise that is given to her.
One of my favorite bits is the introduction to the chapter on building a wardrobe
"The budget-minded woman plans her wardrobe for maximum flexibility: she buys accessories that can be worn with several outfits; she learns the secret of changing the appearance of a basic dress; she chooses her clothes with an eye to the type of life she leads. But, if she must buy all her clothes, she must still limit her wardrobe to what she can afford.
"The woman who sews knows no such limitation. Her wardrobe can be far more complete, for she makes her clothes for less. With the money she saves by doing so she can buy the expensive accessories that other women must pass by."
Ain't that the truth ;)