First draft of 1920s lingerie book

So, not that I had free time, but I was running ahead of schedule yesterday and managed to squeeze in a quick visit to work to take advantage of the scanner there. It’s a slow process but the scans are very clear and will result in a high quality pdf when all is said and done.  So far I’ve scanned the cover, inside cover and pages 1-15. And I have to admit, I’ve barely had a chance to do more than skim the contents but there are a few pieces that are already in my future.

I love that corset covers are featured prominently – within the first few pages – just going to show that not every woman tossed away her corsets as soon as the calendar pages flipped to 1920. And just to help quick track of the different books I’ll be scanning, this one is the 1922 edition of  Patterns for Underwear and Lingerie by Mary Brooks Picken and published by the Woman’s Institute of Domestic Arts & Sciences. I’m trying to determine if this is volume 30 or volume 16 (both numbers appear in the booklet) but haven’t found a definitive list of all the publications yet.

1922 lingerie book page 9

There are surplice corset covers, two-piece embroidery corset covers (fig. 6 above), slip-over corset covers, and of course, plain corset covers. The plain ones form the basis for drafting all the variations so I guess I’ll have to start there.

It will likely take a few weeks to get the full book scanned and cleaned up, but in the meantime, here’s a sneak preview. (Download 1922 Lingerie Book sample in pdf ) It’s the first fifteen pages, mostly untouched with only a watermark added. The final version will be watermark free. There’s five or six sets of drafting instructions within those pages and I’ll be expanding on each one as I work my way through scanning the entire book. Take a look at page 2 for the complete contents to get a taste of what else will be included. I’m looking forward to the Knickerbockers and Combination Suit myself!


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