Supporting Small/Independent Business When You Can't Afford the Products

Flashback Summer: Supporting Small Independent Business When You Can't Afford the Products

Most of us in the vintage community are big believers in buying quality, sustainable items. Although all of us are in this hobby for the fantastic vintage fashion aesthetics, a lot of us also love vintage for its quality. We love it for its uniqueness. We love it for the environmentally-friendly impact of secondhand shopping. We love the small, niche businesses that recreate vintage aesthetics and/or preserve the tradition of craftsmanship in our modern day.

You guys are probably like me in that there are SO MANY small and independent companies that I fangirl over. They create such beautiful garments, shoes, accessories, hats, jewelry, etc., and they're owned by amazing people that take pride in their craft and lift communities with them. I'm all about supporting them, but sometimes my budget is not so on board. So how can we support these small businesses with the budget constraints that many of us have?

Women's Equality Day & The Skirted Soldier

Women's Equality Day The Skirted Soldier - tea WAC WW2
In the U.S., today is Women's Equality Day! I'm celebrating by looking back at women who paved the way and trying out some new tea flavors from The Skirted Soldier, a female veteran-owned business named for women of the past that stood up and proved themselves when their country needed them.

1940s Scrap Yarn Sweater

Flashback Summer: 1940s Scrap Yarn Sweater - Sun-Glo, On Duty Cardigan

I don't know about you, but I don't enjoy packing up a house to move. I enjoy unpacking a house after moving... but not the "before" phase of purging and packing!

In anticipation of moving this spring, I've been working largely from my stash for projects, especially knitting projects. (If I use my stash, I'm not acquiring more... and I have less to pack later!) I've got lots of leftover yarn balls from other projects, but they're all different colors and weights, and I don't know the amounts of a lot of them since they're partial-skeins or I ripped the labels off. I wanted to make a project using them, but it's harder to fit scrap yarns to a project rather than just buying a bunch of new yarn!

Influence of the Korean War on Fashion

Street scene in Seoul, September 1953
The Korean War is sometimes referred to as "The Forgotten War" in the U.S. It wasn't highly publicized like World War II and Vietnam, and it was relatively short, lasting from 1950-1953.  However, it was one of the more impactful conflicts that still affects international relations today. The rate of civilian casualties in the war was higher than during World War II and Vietnam as well, and another generation of American GIs experienced war in a place they likely never would have ventured to otherwise.

(Read a summarized timeline of the war here.)

The conflict also affected the people back home. When troops went to war, many of them were traveling overseas for the first time in their lives. They stopped in various countries along the way to the front, oftentimes buying souvenirs and garments for loved ones back home. These little pieces from their travels made their way into the wardrobes of mothers, wives, girlfriends, and sisters all across America. 

Vintage Maternity Series - The 1960s

Ah, the 1960s! Finally, stretch fabrics started to make their way into maternity fashions, and pregnancy style has never really looked back. Just like the rest of the 60s, maternity fashion was fun and whimsical! Common embellishments included big buttons, bows, rhinestones, bright fabrics, and the like.

Vintage Maternity Series - The 1950s

1950s Vintage Maternity fashion style

Now for the era that defines “vintage maternity style” in the minds of many: the 1950s! Unlike during the 1930s and 1940s, fabric conservation and rationing was no longer a big design consideration and, like the other styles of the 1950s, maternity wear became more voluminous and feminine.

Vintage Maternity Series - The 1940s

1940s Vintage Maternity fashion style

Time for part two of the Vintage Maternity Garment Series, this time featuring the 1940s! 

There was not a huge change in maternity styles from the late 1930s to early 1940s, but fabric rationing during WWII seems to have played into designs later.

Vintage Maternity Series - The 1930s

1930s Vintage Maternity fashion style

Since finding out I was pregnant, I have been collecting and saving vintage maternity patterns in the vain aspiration that someday I would sew them all up and have a magnificent pregnancy wardrobe.

Currently, at about 7 months pregnant, I’ve finished just a pair of pants and two blouses, haha!  So the sewing plans are not going as well as I imagined. HOWEVER, in studying all of these patterns, making a couple of them, and supplementing my wardrobe with vintage garments, I have made some interesting discoveries about the construction of vintage maternity pieces that I wanted to share with you guys. For this, I’ll be looking at some patterns and garments from the 1930s-1960s and sharing interesting details from each of them. Today we’re starting with the 1930s!

DIY Vintage Table Linens with Stencil Revolution

Flashback Summer: DIY vintage style table linens, painting with stencils!

I recently got a new dining room table, which I LOVE. However, it is much larger than our previous table, and I didn't have any tablecloths long enough. When Stencil Revolution emailed to ask about collaborating, the dots connected and I knew the perfect way to fix this tablecloth dilemma!

I love the vintage stencily/painterly style tablecloths, and I thought it would be fun to give something similar a try for myself. What I love most about creating your own linens is the ability to pick exactly the colors you want.  I knew I wanted something jadeite green and red to go with my kitchen and dishes, but I also wanted to throw in some other colors to make it summery and bright!

1940s Maternity Style Video

Every once in a very great while, I make a video and upload it to Youtube. (Ha!) 

The one I just uploaded is featuring a maternity outfit I wore this weekend! It's made of true vintage, reproduction, and me-made garments.  It's RIDICULOUSLY comfortable and is going to be perfect when it gets hot this summer.

Versatility at Its Finest: Gingham Peasant Blouse

I wanted to feature this peasant blouse because it’s a fantastic type of garment for any vintage woman’s wardrobe. Its versatility and classic style makes it a really good silhouette to add to your closet!

I made mine from a vintage 1940s pattern, but peasant blouse patterns were one of those classic styles that were popular for decades (and still are). It should be easy to find such a pattern if you want to make one for yourself. 

Vintage Roses Tea Cozy

On weekends I haven't been going out much, and I've paused my garment-knitting projects until after my pregnancy when I can see where my measurements land. Up until now, garments have been my go-to craft projects, so I've been branching out and seeing what non-personal-garment things I can make, like a tea cozy!

Wonderful News!