Greetings! I’m Mena from The Sew Weekly. Inspired by Casey’s love of the 1940s and the rich resource that is the Sears Catalog Archives at Ancestry.com, I present to you my must-haves and must-makes for Spring. I hope that these serve as inspiration for your own Spring wardrobe!
1. “Rhumba Ruffles” Dress. That’s Sears’ phrase for these peasant-top type dresses. I actually made a very similar dress earlier this year and fell in love with it! I love how unapologetically ruffly the plaid version is! I love the pocket details! I could easily imagine having three or four of these dresses for Spring and Summer.
2. Red and White Striped Pinafore. I know, I know. There’s just something a bit too candy striper about a red and white striped pinafore. With some modern accessories, I think it can work.
3. Brown Gingham Skirt. While gingham reminds me more of Summer than Spring, I love introducing more brown to my Spring wardrobe. I love how feminine it looks without being over-the-top girly. The wide waistline in the Sears photo is a particularly cute touch. I can imagine a brown gingham wrap skirt being worn quite often over the course of the year!
4. Flowery Tilt Hat. While I do love hats, I’ve been too practical to wear or purchase them. That changed, however, when I saw the most beautiful 1940s aqua straw tilt hat at the Candlestick Park Antique Fair. At the time, I balked at the $20 price — it was just more than I usually spend on hats. Now that I have the hat, I’m so happy that I paid the (really quite a steal) price! It absolutely gorgeous and I’m saving it for Easter. So as far as item #4 goes, I can cross it off my list. Here’s a photo of the beauty, complete with netting in absolutely perfect condition :
5. Bright Sandals or Wedges in “Butterfly Colors.” Having committed to only making my clothes, I have a new appreciation for buying shoes. They tend to be my only splurge nowadays (that and $20 1940s hats). Unfortunately, I have a terribly wide foot so I can not find true vintage shoes in my size. For fairly inexpensive (mid $60s), I’ve had much luck with Chelsea Crew. But I still haven’t found my butterfly.
6. Flowery House Coat. I can’t imagine having that much gorgeous fabric and using it for something only worn in the privacy of my own home. Yet I’m still drawn to these house coats. Let’s just call them what they are: robes. I want a gorgeous Spring robe!
7. Knits! Because I sew all my own clothes, I don’t usually purchase vintage dresses or shirts. But I do allow myself three exceptions when vintage shopping: hats, shoes and knits. I love 1930s and 1940s knits and will never pass up the perfect sweater. Last weekend at the Vintage Expo in San Francisco I did the unspeakable: I spent $125 on this skirt/top sweater set from the 1930s. I love it and, as an added bonus, it goes with my hat!
A huge thanks to Casey for letting me share my Spring wish list with you! If you’re unfamiliar with The Sew Weekly, be sure to check it out and join our very welcoming community! And if you sew, check out our weekly challenges!