Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Vintage Notions

After browsing through my little pattern stack, I settled on making a lovely dress from the 1930's for my next project (I think).  In two views of the dress there is a belt, and I thought that it would be perfect to use Casey's tutorial to create a belt for my dress.

Views 3 and 4 use a belt.
View 3 is the one I want to make
Since I had none of the supplies needed, I thought I would first visit the little thrift shop where I picked up some vintage patterns a while ago.  I was hoping to stumble across a belt buckle.  Unfortunately, the shop did not have any belt buckles (or new patterns since my last visit), but I did stumble across a great box of vintage snap fasteners.  Snap fasteners are used in Casey's belt tutorial - as well as in a few of my other 1930s dress patterns.  I thought this was a great find since there are almost 200 snaps in the box, so I will be set for life on my sewing projects, and it was way cheaper than a box at JoAnn's.

This box originally went for $0.10, I paid a little more,
but not by much!
After arriving home I searched the web to see exactly how vintage they were.  I didn't come across anything definitive, but I gather that they are 1950's at the newest (based on information from this post).  I also found another post on vintage fasteners that made me wish I had found something more like this:

But then again, maybe not.  I would likely
think they are too pretty to use and they
would therefore collect dust somewhere.
From my research, I also found that Prym's was a German company, the first to bring the fashion world the modern snap fastener as used today.   Here is one of their advertisements from 1949 that appeared in the July issues of Good Housekeeping:

While I was doing some research, I made the connection that I had a few German pattern magazines, and wouldn't it be neat if there was a Prym's advertisement in one of those magazines?  To my delight, there was:

This magazine is full of lovely patterns that will need snap fasteners!

So wish me luck on completing my next project before we all get too old.  

Live the moment, love life!


  1. Ah, can't wait to see this one. Wow!

  2. This is going to be really pretty! Good luck! You have done a lot of research that's always helpful! love the pattern you will look fabulous in it!

  3. Good Luck! This was fun to read. When do you get to be a housewife and you can sew all day? Miss you!

  4. Portia, I'm using this post to test your patience. I haven't even picked out the fabric yet - but I can't wait to see it either :)

    Gina, I love history and think it is so interesting. I think that is why I am drawn to vintage patterns. To think that I can make the exact same thing that I woman 80 years ago could have made - and to do it in the same way - wow! Thanks for wishing me luck, I am quite a slow seamstress.

    Cherie, I'm glad you found this an interesting read when sewing is not your thing. I don't think I'll be a housewife any time soon - but I can at least have fun exploring domestic creativity!