1920s Instruction Manuals

It’s been a busy day but sadly not filled with much sewing… I had been greatly looking forward to a 1920s sewing workshop at the museum today and trying my hand at an alternate style of 1-hour-dress, but unfortunately the workshop participants didn’t show up so the class was brought to a very early end. I hope I can make it up to AM and we can find some other time to do more 1920s sewing soon!

Late this evening, I did make a small dent in one of my regency petticoats – it’s actually wearable now, but I am adding to it  by piecing a 4″ deep ruffle from 6 strips of 36″ wide muslin and managed to hand hem about half of it. I was thinking this would be part of my halloween costume this year but practicality won out and I finally just decided to go with a Medusa costume. Phew… glad that dithering is done!! With no immediate deadline, the hand-sewing was very relaxing while we were watching TV (yes, I was actually watching TV!) and should be easy to finish tomorrow. After that it just needs to be gathered and attached to the petticoat.

Anyway, that’s not today’s exciting news! A day or two ago I won a few auctions on ebay and now these lovelies are on their way to me:

book cover 01 book cover 02

A 1922 manual on underwear and lingerie and a 1923 manual on dressmaking! Both of these were produced by the Woman’s Institute of Domestic Arts & Sciences, developed by Mary Brooks Picken (of the 1-hour dress system fame!) and although many of these manuals were printed as correspondence courses, very few have made their way into Google Books or the other online archive sites. So, needless to say, I’m pretty excited about their arrival. I do have plans to scan them and make them available but of course that all depends on the shape they are in and how much time I can find to do it!


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