Tag Archives: tutorial

A bag for the dance (Tutorial)


It’s been a while, again. November flew by so very quickly, in December I indulged in a short pre-holidays holiday to London, visited my family in Germany and was caught by a flu shortly after. Now it is already january and I have the feeling I have done nothing the past weeks.

Well, as you can imagine, being ill at home and lying in bed with fever, I wasn’t really capable of sewing anything. So it was only very shortly before Christmas that I remembered I should search for something appropriate to post here. And while I first only searched for a cute drawing or a beautiful front page, I quickly found some small and easy to make gift ideas in “Der Bazar” from December 15 1924 and thought “why not”. After all, I didn’t manage to finish it in time, so see it as a little belated Christmas present.


As you see, there are a lot of different ideas, today let’s talk about the two on the lower left. These are two items to take with you on a dance. The first one is a little bag and I will come to it in a second. The second one is a handkerchief. There is no pattern for it or its embroidery given, only the description of it. It really has a slit in the middle, simply for handling it, this seems to have been a novelty in 1924, at least it is described as one. I have never seen something like this, neither as a tutorial nor in real life and I really can’t think of any use for it, I mean, a hankie is not that big that you can’t handle it without a slit.

Now, the bag. It is to be made from leftovers of silk ribbon, if possible matching the colour of the dress intended to wear with it. You can embellish it with some embroidery and finish it with a little tassel.


The easiest way to make it is: search for a ribbon approximately the width of the pattern, a narrower one for the handle and then choose lining and tassel accordingly. I went for a cotton-viscose grosgrain ribbon in oxblood red, for the handle and the bar I used a leftover of black liner tape (I am not sure if this is the right translation, but it was the only one I could find. It is a rather stiff ribbon with one reinforced edge. You sew it onto the inside of suit trousers’ hems to prevent them from being damaged by the shoes they lie on. It is not very pretty but as this project was more fun than serious reconstruction and as I had nothing else I went with it.).  To line it I used a little leftover from my 1940ies winter coat.
The tutorial says the decoration on the bag in the magazine is embroidered, but as the grosgrain is pretty dense and not fun to stitch through this wasn’t an alternative. Instead I attached two  lace flowers I made years ago when I started tatting.

Well, honestly? To me it looks like a luggage tag. And it also has the size of a luggage tag. And I can’t think of anything that could fit into it apart from a business card, even a lipstick would push it out of shape. Well, at least this explains why you need a slit in your hankie 😉

if you fancy your own luggge tag-click to enlarge

Ja, es ist schon wieder etwas her, dass ich hier etwas geschrieben habe. Der November verging schon wie im Flug, Anfang Dezember habe ich mir dann ein paar vorweihnachtliche Tage in London gegönnt bevor ich noch ein Wochenende die Familie in Deutschland besuchte. Direkt danach fegte mich dann eine ausgewachsene Grippe zwei Wochen von den Beinen und schon war Weihnachten, ohne dass ich zu irgendetwas gekommen bin.

Nun, zwei Wochen lag ich tatsächlich mit Fieber, Erkältungssymptomen und Kreislaufproblemen im Bett, ohne dass ich auch nur daran denken wollte, etwas zu nähen. Daher war es tatsächlich schon so gut wie Weihnachten als ich anfing zu überlegen, was den ein passendes Geschenk für euch wäre. Anfangs suchte ich aufgrund der Kürze der Zeit nur nach einer netten Grafik, fand dann aber bald diese Seite mit Last-Minute-Geschenkideen in der 2. Dezember-Ausgabe des “Bazar” von 1924. Nun, wie ihr seht hat es dann doch nicht gereicht und es wird eher ein Januar-Geschenk, aber was soll’s.


Wie ihr seht, versammelt die Seite eine  ganze Reihe Ideen, Thema heute sollen die beiden unten links sein. Beides kleine Dinge, die man zu einer Tanzveranstaltung mitnehmen soll. Das eine ist ein kleiner Beutel, zu dem ich sofort komme und das andere ist…nun ja, ein Taschentuch mit Schlitz. Es gibt keine Vorlage für die Stickerei, das Wichtigste war den Autoren offenbar das Taschentuch an sich, eine “Neuheit”, denn durch den Schlitz kann man das Taschentuch über die Finger ziehen und so festhalten. Ja…wie dem auch sei… ein wenig fühle ich mich an unnütze Erfindungen von Teleshopping-Kanälen erinnert.

Nun zum Täschchen: Laut Anleitung wird es aus Seidenband-Resten gefertigt, die zum Kleid, zu welchem es getragen wird, passen sollten. Vollendet wird es dann mit etwas Stickerei und einer Quaste.

Close-up of the lining

Am einfachsten kommt man zu diesem Beutel, wenn man ein Seidenband in etwa der gewünschten Breite nimmt, so muss nichts verstürzt werden. Aber man kann es natürlich auch aus Stoffresten nähen. Dann braucht man noch ein schmales Band für den Henkel, Futter wenn gewünscht und was man sich so an Zierrat vorstellt. Ich habe ein Baumwoll/Viskose-Ripsband in Ochsenblut-Rot und passender Breite genommen und für den Henkel und den Riegel ein Rest Hosenstossband. Das geht sicherlich schöner, aber es sollte auch mehr ein Experiment denn ernsthaftes Taschen-Nähen sein. Als Futter diente ein Rest vom Wintermantel-Futter. Die Seitennähte mit der Hand zu schliessen (einfacher Überwendlingstich) war auf dem festen Band mühsam genug, daher wollte ich nicht noch etwas sticken. Stattdessen habe ich zwei Blumen aus Schiffchenspitze aufgenäht und die Quaste kam vor Weihnachten von einer Packung Duftteelichte (ja, nichts wegwerfen, man weiss ja nie 😉 )

Nun, was soll ich sagen? Es erinnert mich an einen Gepäckanhänger, die Grösse passt auch. Und ich kann mir wirklich kaum etwas vorstellen, was da hinein passt. Gut, es ist die Zeit, als man als Dame weder Smartphone noch Portemonnaie zum Ball bringen musste, aber da passt nicht einmal eine Puderdose rein und selbst ein Lippenstift würde unschön beulen. Also wohl ein besseres Visitenkartenetui, immerhin erklärt das, warum man sein Taschentuch über dem Finger tragen muss.


Damit für heute genug von vergangenen Mode-Albernheiten
Enough of past fashion oddities

see you soon, alles Liebe


Triple C: Culottes, Cape and an early christmas gift

More than three years ago I published a post. It was about a 1942 culottes pattern I made from green linen I had bought at IKEA. As the pattern was one to enlarge at home, I offered it for you on my blog. When my blog moved to its current webspace, the post and the pattern moved, too, while the photos stayed on the old webspace. Now some time ago the host of my old domain quit business and the photos hosted there were not available anymore. Since then, the tutorial is pretty useless, hence picture-less.

I had planned to make myself a new version for long, also because the old one doesn’t live anymore. And as you see in the drawing, the pattern is not only for the culottes, but also for a matching cape. So when I came across this blue-black wool-blend(53% wool and different artificial fibres) bouclé I decided this was the fabric to turn into a culottes-suit.

As wool is not the comfiest to wear on bare skin or with thin tights, I decided to completely line the two pieces, using a white lining with a tiny flower pattern. The fabric was given to me as part of an unfinished men’s jacket and therefore already cut. This resulted in a lot of seams inside the cape and one frankenpieced leg, but after all it did work and I used all of the fabric left, so hooray for that!

I changed the upper part of the cape, instead of the hood I went for a small stand-up collar.

The original tutorial asked to sew upper fabric and lining together and then turn the whole thing over. But I didn’t want to make a quick rain cape from oil cloth, but a pretty wool cape. So I added facings and properly inserted the lining. And I added bound buttonholes.

For the slits I used a velvet ribbon leftover and little leather triangles to secure the ends.

For a reason I don’t remember anymore I moved the zipper from the side to the centre back. Maybe I did it because of the thick fabric, maybe because I lacked enough seam allowance for a zipper at the side seam, I have no idea. It is a little on the short side and a longer one won’t fit due to the v-shaped seam below it (you have the crotch seam and in the front and the back an additional seam to give the culotte-look), so I won’t advise you do to this.

While the first version of the culottes had an added waistband (as the pattern suggests though it is not shown in the drawing, but only mentioned in the text), I didn’t have enough fabric to realize one on this one. Instead I added an invisible waistband inside that is now hid by the lining.

Well, a new suit for me, for you a pattern made available again:

Please check your measurements, as they seem to be quite special. I had to remove only 0.5cm width on the waist, but a lot more at the hips, so it was made for a completely different body-shape than mine, but still with a small waist.

Aus: Frau und Mode. Beilage zum “Blatt für Alle”, 14. Februar 1942

Please note: As some of the measurements are cut in the scan, here are the missing numbers.

Auf deutsch:

Vor über drei Jahren habe ich einen Post geschrieben, über einen Hosenrock nach einem Schnittmuster von 1942. Genäht hatte ich ihn aus grünem IKEA-Leinen und da der Schnitt sowieso zum selbst vergrössern war, habe ich ihn auf meinem Blog zur Verfügung gestellt. Als mein Blog dann auf seinen aktuellen Webspace zügelte, nahm ich den Post und damit den Schnitt mit. Nur das Bild blieb am alten Ort und als der alte Provider dann vor einiger Zeit seinen Dienst einstellte, verschwand es ganz still und heimlich. Seitdem ergibt ein Link zu den Tutorial mangels Bild aka. Schnittmuster nicht mehr wirklich Sinn.

Schon seit Langem hatte ich eine zweite Version geplant, zumal der Schnitt ja nicht nur einen Hosenrock, sondern auch ein Cape beinhaltet. Und als ich dann einen schönen schwarz-blauen Woll-Misch-Bouclé (53% Wolle gepaart mit verschiedenen Kunstfasern) fand war die Sache klar: Ein Hosenrock-Kostüm!


Nun ist Wolle auf nackter Haut oder auch nur auf Perlonstrümpfen nicht gerade angenehm, weshalb sowohl Cape als auch Hosenrock gefüttert sind. Als kleinen Kontrast habe ich mich für ein monochrom geblümtes weisses Futter entschieden, welches mal als Teil eines halbfertigen Herrensakkos in meinen Fundus kam. Daher war es natürlich zerschnitten und ich musste etwas puzzeln. Das Futter im Cape ist in schmalen Bahnen zugeschnitten und eines der Bein-Schnittteile musste ich dann komplett aus den Resten zusammenstückeln. Aber es hat gepasst und der Futterstoff ist auch komplett verbraucht.

Anstelle der Kapuze entschied ich mich für einen schmalen Stehkragen, schnitttechnisch gesehen ist das nichts anderes als ein Streifen, längs gefaltet.

Die Anleitung sieht eigentlich vor, Futter und Oberstoff des Capes zusammenzunähen und dann zu verstürzen. Aber ich wollte ja kein schnelles Regencape aus Wachstuch, sondern was hübsches. Also habe ich Belege angeschnitten und das Futter ganz brav eingesetzt. Die Knopflöcher sind Paspelknopflöcher.

Die Armschlitze habe ich zuerst an den Kanten mit Zick-Zack-Stich gesichert, damit der eher grobe Stoff und das fisselige Futter nicht ausfransen, und dann mit einem Rest Samtband eingefasst. An die Enden habe ich kleine Dreiecke aus Leder gesetzt, das gefiel mir und schützt davor, dass die Schlitze ausreissen.

Warum ich den Reissverschluss von der Seite in die hintere Mitte gesetzt habe, weiss ich nicht mehr. Es ist nicht authentisch und er ist auch noch zu kurz (aber länger geht nicht, weil die Naht sich darunter in die Schrittnaht und die “Rocknaht” aufsplittet und wie ein auf dem Kopf stehendes V auseinandergeht, da kann ich keinen Reissverschluss mehr einsetzen). Meine Theorie ist, dass ich entweder zu wenig Nahtzugabe für einen Reissverschluss an der Seite hatte oder dass mir der Wollstoff zu dick war und ich Angst vor einer dicken Naht hatte. Also falls ihr das Ding nachnäht: Lasst den Reissverschluss wo er ist.

Im Text zum Schnitt steht, man solle einen Bund ansetzen. Da ich aber keinen Stoff mehr hatte, war das leider nicht möglich. Also habe ich stattdessen einen unsichtbaren Bund innen angenäht und diesen dann mit dem Futter vollständig verdeckt. Niemand wird je wissen, was für ein schrecklich hässliches Band das war. 😀

Und weil es ja unfair wäre, wenn nur ich jetzt einen neuen Hosenrock habe, bekommt ihr den Schnitt noch einmal hochgeladen, hoffentlich diesmal dann dauerhafter.

Bevor ihr euch ans Nähen wagt: kontrolliert die Zahlen! Ich habe beim Bund nur 0.5cm pro Naht weggenommen, an der Hüfte dafür eine ganze Menge. Die Proportionen sind also komplett anders als mein Körper und möglicherweise auch eurer.

Da ein paar Zahlen am Rand abgeschnitten sind, habe ich sie euch hier nachgetragen.

Viel Spass beim Nachnähen,



Orange is the new white

Last weekend on the flea market I bought a small magazine, “Mode & Roman,” issue from Juli 25 1936, a French women’s magazine with some pages of fashion drawings, inspiration how to decorate your home, fun advertisements and reader’s letters, the biggest part of the pages ist occupied by a love story. I didn’t read it yet, but oftentimes these short stories aren’t better than the cheap novel-booklets you can still buy today. Anyway, they can be quite cute so I maybe will give it a try, shouldn’t be too hard to understand even in French.

Well. also included are two knitting patterns, one for a baby onesie and one for a women’s blouse in…oh wonder! a small size. Normally I have difficulties finding my size in pattern magazines and can directly search for teenage girl designs (which are mostly pretty boring).
This pattern is for a french Size 38, which, if it hasn’t changed the last 80 years, is a European size 36, which is, more or less, my size (there are a couple of brands where even 34 is too large for me and in Burda patterns I cut 34 as well, but mostly 36 works fine with a few alterations).
As with many knitting patterns, this one came with a pattern scheme, meant to be enlarged and serving as a guide to check the size while knitting.

If you have read my blog for a while you know my Achilles heel: I can’t knit. But a few months ago I had bought a leftover of a beautiful pure wool knit fabric. Initially I had planned to turn it into a pencil skirt, but I somehow I was afraid that it could become baggy after a short time or wouldn’t look as elegant as I’d like it to be, so I didn’t touch it.

Well, now I had a 30ies cardigan knitting tutorial, a pattern for it and some wool knit fabric and I thought: Couldn’t it be possible to make such a cardigan from knit fabric instead of knitting it? Modern ones are often sewn as well or are machine knitted and very fine, not unlike the fabric I had. I decided to give it a try, enlarged the pattern and cut my fabric. Because marking the fabric was impossible I just cut it with a narrow seam allowance. This proved to be a massive fault in hindsight. After I had joined the pieces it looked it fact good but was so small! I undid the seams and shifted them as close to the edge as I possibly could, gaining not more than 2cm circumference in total.
The tutorial in the magazine describes the cardigan as white with navy blue buttons and decoration. I likes this colour scheme and stuck with it, adding it to my bright orange fabric.
I used white cotton ribbon as facing on the front edges, the same ribbon combined with a length of blue ribbon became the belt. I had found a beautiful white and blue buckle in my stash to go with it.


It took me quite some time deciding whether to add the collar or not. First I wanted to make a  navy blue collar but the I tried toying around with some antique white collars I had. Somehow it looked so girly and cute and not convincing at all, so I just finished and turned in the edges. If I want I could still add it.


I found matching fabric covered buttons in my stash, with the ones I wanted came some smaller ones as well. As I already own a short-sleeved orange pullover I didn’t need a plain orange cardigan, so I combined the additional buttons with some mother-of-pearl-beads and arranged them around the neckline.

It still sits pretty tight and I fear it could gape when wearing it, but after all I really like it. I am a little mad with myself that I didn’t think of the ease and that knit fabric has less ease than hand knitting, I nearly ruined this lovely fabric and it was not that cheap, too.
But the final result: It works: It is possible to turn a knitting pattern scheme  into a sewing pattern for knits. Just check the size and the ease!!!

I scanned the pattern, in case anybody of you can use a french knitting tutorial.

parvasedapta.ch_1936 Cardigan

parvasedapta.ch_1936 Cardigan II

Auf Deutsch

Letztes Wochenende fand ich auf dem Trödelmarkt eine dünne Zeitschrift, “Mode & Roman” (Ausgabe vom 25- Juli 1936), ein französisches Frauenblättchen mit einer Handvoll Modezeichnungen, etwas Wohnungsdeko, die üblichen Werbeanzeigen und schlauen Briefe, den allergrössten Teil macht dann jedoch der im Titel angedrohte Roman aus. Noch hab ich ihn nicht gelesen, aber oft bewegen sich diese Erzählungen auf dem Niveau der Heftchen, die man auch heute noch am Kiosk kaufen kann. Manchmal sind diese alten Geschichten ganz niedlich und so schwer kann so etwas selbst auf französisch nicht sein, vielleicht setz ich mich mal dran und lass mich auf die Liebes-Schnulze ein.

Ebenfalls enthalten sind zwei Strickmuster, eines für einen Baby-Overall und eine Damenbluse in…sag bloss! einer kleinen Grösse. Normalerweise habe ich in den alten Heften immer Schwierigkeiten etwas passendes zu finden und nicht selten lande ich dann bei den Backfisch-Modellen (die dann soooo bieder sind). Dieser Schnitt aber ist in einer französischen Grösse 38, wenn sich da in den letzten 80 Jahren nichts geändert hat, ist das eine europäische 36, was wiederum mehr oder weniger meine Grösse ist (es gibt durchaus Marken, da ist mir selbst 34 zu gross und Burdaschnitte schneide ich auch in 34 zu, aber 36 klappt meist ganz gut, vielleicht mit ein paar Änderungen).
Wie das häufig bei Strickanleitungen der Fall ist war bei dieser ein Schema dabei, um die endgültigen Masse beim Stricken überprüfen zu können.

Nun, treue Leser wissen um meine Achillesferse: ich kann nicht stricken. Aber vor einigen Monaten hatte ich in der Restekiste wunderschönen Strick aus reiner Wolle gefunden. Eigentlich sollte er ein Bleistiftrock werden, aber ich hatte doch zu viel Angst, dass der Stoff beulen könnte oder es einfach komisch aussähe, weshalb er immer noch unberührt im Schrank lag.


Nun, ich hatte also eine 30er-Jahre Strickanleitung, ein Schnittschema und Wollstrick und dachte: Kann man das Schnittmuster nicht einfach mit dem Strickstoff nähen anstelle es zu stricken? Moderne Cardigans sind ja auch ganz fein gestrickt, teilweise sogar dünner als mein Wollstoff. Ich beschloss es drauf ankommen zu lassen, zeichnete den Schnitt ab und zerschnitt den schönen Stoff.
Da Kreide und ähnliches nicht haften wollte schnitt ich einfach mit einem schmalen Abstand um die Schnittteile – das war DER Fehler im ganzen Projekt. Nach dem Zusammennähen musste ich feststellen dass es toll aussah, aber viel zu klein war. Ich porkelte die Nähte mühsam auseinander und nähte ein zweites Mal so nah am Rand wie möglich, viel Arbeite für am Ende nur 2cm mehr Durchmesser.

In der Zeitschrift wird die Jacke aus weisser Wolle mit blauen Knöpfen und Dekoration gemacht. Die Farben gefielen mir und ich behielt sie zusätzlich zum Orange des Stoffs bei. Die Innenseite der Knopfleiste verstärkte ich mit weissem Baumwollband, dasselbe verwandelte sich unter Hinzunahme von etwas blauem in einen Gürtel, eine alte Schnalle aus meinem Vorrat bekrönte das Gürtelvorhaben.

Dann habe ich eine Weile gebrütet, ob ich einen Kragen will oder nicht. Zunächst fand ich einen blauen Kragen eine hübsche Idee aber als ich ein paar meiner alten weissen Kragen anprobierte gefiel mir alles nicht, zu verspielt, zu niedlich, überzeugte nicht. Also klappte ich die Kanten um und der Halsausschnitt blieb nackig, einen der losen weissen Kragen könnte ich später immer noch dazu anziehen.


Ebenfalls im Vorrat fand ich dunkelblaue Stoffknöpfe, welche es ebenfalls in einer kleineren Variante gab. Da ich schon einen orangen Kurzarm-Pullover habe und demnach keinen schlichten Kurzarmcardigan vergass ich alle Zurückhaltung, warf zu den kleinen Knöpfen noch ein paar Perlmutt-Perlen und nähte alles auf die Vorderseite.

Es ist immer noch sehr eng und ich habe ein wenig Sorge dass die Knöpfe aufspannen, trotzdem mag ich das Resultat sehr gerne. Ich ärgere mich sehr über mich selbst, dass ich an den Dehnungsfaktor nicht früher gedacht habe, so hätte ich den (übrigens gar nicht so günstigen) Stoff fast ruiniert.

Aber unter’m Strich: Es funktioniert! Man kann so ein Strickschema durchaus mit Strickstoffen nachnähen, vergesst einfach nicht Bewegungszugaben und Dehnfaktoren!

Falls jemand mit französischen Strickanleitungen arbeiten kann, habe ich die Anleitung gross genug zum nachlesen eingescannt.

Bis bald, love


A bag when you need one

(Sorry, the post about the Saree-fabric-dress you might have seen on facebook has to wait a few days more)

Earlier this year I purchased a small folder filled with a series of booklets from the 1920ies, the “Manuel de Modes Sunlight”. Each booklet of this “Sunlight fashion compendium”, as the title would be in English contains one lesson. Sunlight used to be a soap brand, interesting is that they obviously kept the English name in Switzerland, but switched to the odd name “Sunlicht” in Germany (Björn wrote a very interesting post on the history of the brand, sadly only in German). If this booklets could be purchased or if you needed to collect stamps or wrappings to get them, I don’t know, there isn’t even a date in them.
But “modes” is not used as we would understand the word “fashion” today, but describes the things we would ascribe to a miliner or a modiste (compare to the historical french expression “marchande de modes”). The vast majority of the tutorials are for making hats in all shapes and materials. But there are also a few patterns for knitprojects, ties, children’s wear and handbags.


And one pattern that can’t neccesarily be described as a handbag, but it is a bag after all. The pattern is called “Tablier-Réticule”, so “apron-handbag”. The drawing is pretty self-explanatory:


The lower end of the apron is worked double and works as a bag, drawstrings enable to close the bag whilst the upper part of the apron is hidden inside.

As I said, most of the patterns and instructions in the book are for making hats, so this apron is meant to be handy for a miliner, for example when visiting a client and adding decoration onto a finished base. I have seen comparable aprons with pockets made from leather worn by shoemakers. Now, we are not dressing a shoemaker, but an elegant 20ies miliner, so of course the tutorial advises  us to use silk for this apron, how very sophisticated. At least it also states that the apron could as well be used when knitting or embroidering.
And, to make it more fashionable, of course you could change the shape at the bottom or the overall size.


The instructions are very detailed, very long and in french. It is explained in every detail how much seam allowance you have to add here an how wide the ribbon has to be there. Honestly? This is an apron, not a custom made corset! It doesn’t matter at all if it is 1cm longer or shorter, in my opinion. This is the pattern diagram, for me it was completely sufficient to sew this project, I ignored both the instructions and the advise to make a paper pattern. So please excuse that I didn’t translate four pages of french instructions.


I chose a sheer polyester fabric that mimics dupioni silk in its structure, it was given to me years ago as a leftover from some curtains. Add a bit of very stiff lace instead of the ruffles (has to be made of something plastic-like as well), a white embroidered cotton ribbon (used to be a table decoration for a christening or something like that, found it at the charity shop) to tie and some cheap satin ribbon, advanced stashbusting I would call it 🙂


My version is significantly smaller than the measurements given in the diagram above (-10cm in height and -10cm in width), simply because I didn’t have more fabric. But I do like the size it has, when using the original length the bag would have hung much too low to be comfortable within reach.

And as I am neither an elegant french miliner nor in need of a bag for my embroidery projects, I use my apron to store my clothes-pegs in it.

I hope you like this tutorial, feel free to sew your own apron and let me know, I would love to see your version!

auf Deutsch

(Falls ihr auf das Kleid aus meinem Facebook-Spoiler gewartet habt, sorry, das braucht noch ein paar Tage)

Anfang des Jahres fand ich auf dem Flohmarkt einen kleinen Stapel Hefte in Französisch, zusammengebunden und in einer passenden Mappe, wie man es heute manchmal noch bei Zeitschriften-Abos sieht. Die Hefte waren aus den 20ern und bildeten das “Manuel de Modes Sunlight” in 12 Lektionen, jedes Heft eine. Sunlight war eine Seifenfirma, interessanterweise hiess sie zu diesem Zeitpunkt in Deutschland schon “Sunlicht”,in der Schweiz wurde der Name offenbar nicht geändert (über die Marke hat Björn vor einiger Zeit einen tollen Post geschrieben). Ob man diese Büchlein einfach kaufen konnte oder man sie für Sammelmarken oder leere Seifenpapiere bekam, ich weiss es nicht.
Nun definiert dieses “Sunlight Lehrbuch der Mode” die Mode nicht in unserem heutigen Sinn, sondern enthält Anleitungen die man heute einem Hutmacher oder einer Putzmacherin zuschreiben würde (diejenigen von euch, die sich für historische Mode interessieren kennen wahrscheinlich den Begriff “marchande de modes”). Die allermeisten Anleitungen darin sind Hüte in allen Formen und Materialien. Zusätzlich gibt es noch eine Handvoll Strickanleitungen, Krawatten, Kinderkleidung und Handtaschen.

Ja, und noch etwas, was man nicht wirklich als Handtasche beschreiben kann, aber doch irgendwie eine Tasche ist, eine “Tablier-Réticule”, also eine Schürzen-Tasche. Wenn man sich die Zeichnung ansieht muss man eigentlich nicht mehr viel erklären, das untere Ende der Schürze ist doppelt gearbeitet und bildet eine Tasche, mit Zugbändern kann diese dann auch verschlossen und der obere Teil darin versteckt werden.



Genäht ist die Schürze aus einem Polyesterstoff mit Dupionseiden-Struktur, den ich mal als Überbleibsel einer Gardine geerbt habe. Dazu ein wenig komische steife Plastikspitze anstelle der Rüsche, ein Tischband aus bestickter Baumwolle aus dem Trödelladen als Bindeband und etwas billiges Satinband, fertig und der der Materialvorrat um ein paar Schrankleichen ärmer, sehr schön!
Die Schürze ist etwas kleiner als in der Vorlage angegeben (10cm kürzer und auch 10cm schmaler), ich hatte einfach nicht mehr Stoff. Aber wenn sie so lang gewesen wäre, hätte ich nicht mehr ohne Verrenkungen hineingreifen können, also ist es für mich so besser.

Nun, ich bin weder eine elegante französische Modistin noch brauchen meine Stickprojekte ein neues Zuhause, daher ist da ganz schnöde mein Wäscheklammerbeutel geworden.

Falls euch der Schnitt gefällt und ihr ihn euch auch näht, schreibt mir bitte, ich würde sehr gerne Bilder von euren Versionen sehen.

See you soon, alles Liebe



No plastic is good plastic

As you might know my blog’s title includes the motto “caring for tomorrow”. This may not become obvious or be in the spotlight in every post, but it is a very important aspect of my life.
Maybe one of the biggest steps towards a more sustainable life is to realize what plastic does to our planet and to our health and that we do good avoiding it as good as we can (I won’t go much into detail here because I don’t want to proselytise. If you want to inform yourself a quick online-seach should give you a good start) This is anything but easy, in fact so much of our daily life is made from plastic, it is next to impossible  avoiding it completely. So the best we can do is to check our every day routine, where can I avoid plastic with little effort, what can be substituted with something else and so on.

One of the easiest and yet most important things is to do without plastic bags. The vast majority of plastic bags is discarded after having been used only once. And during my years working in a bookshop I have even come across some clients who complained about being used as an advertisement panel when carrying plastic bags, really, what a first world problem! We are used to not forgetting our keys, our handkerchiefs, our gloves at home, but I always encounter the same excuse “I simply forget to take a cotton bag with me”.
Interesting how our brain works sometimes, for me it’s all about prioritising and if I don’t want to forget that bag, I won’t.

I don’t want to talk about cotton bags today, I do have too many of them and I don’t sew any more of them as long as I have all these that somehow gathered in my broom closet over the years. And yes, I do keep one with me in my handbag, always.

But sometimes, a cotton bag just isn’t the right mean of transportation. Think of berries and salad from the market or a cake from your local bakery. So when my mother asked me last year if I was interested in an old basket I said yes immediately. I had planned to get a basket for already some time, but I thought this was something I could easily find on a flea market or in a charity shop and didn’t want to buy a new one, so when my mother said she had been given this old one and didn’t need it, it was just the perfect timing.

My joy ceased abruptly when I saw it the first time:


This was most probably the ugliest basket I had seen my entire life. That yellow stuff you see at the sides is yellow pvc-tablecloth and was supposed to cover the basket but the elastic inside was a little out of shape, so it just hung down very poorly, looking even more horrible.
The naked basket I liked much better:



But it has a little problem: As I said, it is old. I don’t know how old, but old enough for the  material to get brittle. It still can hold weight, but the single stalks break very easily, especially at the bottom. Carrying a bottle of milk is fine, but you have to be careful not to throw anything directly onto a single stalk or it could break, therefore destabilising the whole basket. Here you see the problem:


Well, I had two choices: Leave it as it was, knowing that the basket would be completely damaged and unuseable in the foreseeable future (and risking to cover the street with my groceries one unlucky day) or I could face and solve the problem.
You can imagine that I wouldn’t write this post if I would have went for the first option 😉

I decided to copy the pattern from the ugly yellow cover and to add a lining (could you call this a lining in this case or is there a more appropriate word?).  The bottom piece of the lining I attached to a piece of cardboard, so that the basket underneath would be protected from anything heavy falling on one single stalk.
I used an old lavender coloured tablecloth I got years ago for free because it has some stains. I wasn’t able to cut away all the stains, but they are on the lining so not visible because of the cover (and I can’t wash the lining, so it will be even more stained in the future, I suppose). The tablecloth had a darker stripe woven around the edges, some 10cm away from the hem, I placed these stripes vertically in the lining (below the handle) and included it in the design of the cover as well.

Somehow I made a massive mistake when calculating the lining, you see I had to add a quite wide strap to make it fit. Here a photo how it looked before I added the cover, you can see the dark woven stripe below the handle:

parvasedapta.ch - Embroidered Basket V
Let me tell you, sewing something onto a basket is NOT funny. I attached the lining with a straight needle and it was not easy at all, for the cover I used a curved needle. I have to admit, it worked better, but my fingers started to cramp because of the unfamiliar form. I am quite sure  that this was the first and the last basket I ever made a cover for.

parvasedapta.ch - Embroidered Basket I
I decided to add a little embroidery to make it less plain. I went for a design I found in an early 20th century pattern sheet for machine embroidery, I already briefly mentioned it in this post. I searched for the book it belonged with (“Das Sticken mit der Nähmaschine”) online and it is dated around 1910-20 (no year was printed on it, these are the seller’s guesses) And no, I didn’t machine embroider it, but used back and stem stitches which resulted in a rather naive and plain embroidery effect, but I like it pretty much.

parvasedapta.ch - Embroidered Basket III

You can see how I included the dark stripe into the design.
I overlapped the two sides as the yellow pvc had done also, don’t ask me why the two sides look so asymetrical, they should be identical (and it is on purpose that I didn’t put one side on top of the other, this would have looked even more odd).

parvasedaota.ch - Embroidered Basket II
The edges are the original hem of the tablecloth, on the back of it I attached some cotton ribbon to thread the elastic through. Now it closes properly again.

The pattern sheet I copied the embroidery from is in a very fragile condition and tears when I unfold it, so I will try to use it at little as possible in the future. The pattern I used for this project I had traced onto tissue paper. To keep it, without manipulating the pattern sheet again, I digitalized it. And because I am so kind I will share it with you, klick on the image to enlarge it (and tell me when you makee it, I am curious to see your version):

parvasedapta.ch - embroidery pattern


I like the result very much and love to take it with me to the market. And though I know I won’t try to sew with baskets again, it was well worth the effort.
parvasedapta.ch - Embroidered Basket IV
See you soon, love,









Underneath the Mango tree…

Deutsche Version unten

While I flipped through my piles of old paper to find some Christmas images to post last december, I found a very cute tutorial for a little christmas gift idea, a thimble holder. The tutorial was labeled as something easy to be crafted by children to make a little present for their mums.

tutorial thimble holder, parvasedapta.ch
The thing on the left (from: Ringiers Unterhaltungs-Blätter, December 19th 1925)

All you need is some cardboard, an empty matchbox and coloured paper and pencils to decorate.

The little thimble holder is a humble craft for boys or girls. Two rectangles are cut into the matchbox in that way, that they stay connected to the matchbox  on one side to be put upright, so that the cardboard-back can be attatched to them through slits. For the thimble a round cutout as seen in the picture is sufficient. After the cardboard-back has been prepared, it is connected to the box with adhesive tape on the back and the bottom. Now it can be decorated with white and coloured paper and painted. In the openings on the sides the donor puts small needle wrappers.

I skipped the adhesive tape and used glue for everything. Today not only suitable for mummies for Christmas, but also as a little present for a good sewing friend.

Well, maybe my expectations were a little high, but it wasn’t that easy as I had thought, working with something as small as a matchbox is tricky even for my small hands, I can’t imagine it being easier with clumsy children’s fingers. Maybe this was meant for children a little older than I imagined.

thimble holder, parvasedapta.ch

Maybe you wonder why I didn’t post this for Christmas? First because I thought even though it is labeled a gift idea it could be made any time of the year as a random gift. Second because I wanted to try this and had neither time nor matchboxes. Yes, you heard right, all I had were matchbooks or the modern, small matchboxes, but not the old-fashioned large ones. It is easy to buy them at the supermarket by the dozen, but I had enough matches and didn’t want to buy that many more. I finally found a little box only slightly larger than a matchbox and brand-new vintage-styled mini-matchboxes in a hipster-shop (1,50CHF for one single matchbox, really? This is what I do for you!). So my two versions are a little smaller and a little larger than the original size should have been, imagine a size in between 😉

parvasedapta.ch, tutthiholIIparvasedapta.ch, tutthihol

When I was done with the first one it looked indeed like the drawing but I hadn’t been aware until then it strongly resembled a tombstone. Don’t you think? For me this was a quite creepy thought, imagine a child giving some tiny cardboard tombstone to its mother on Christmas eve, with her initials on it?! Maybe I’m making things up and a mother would never see something like this in her offspring’s bricolage, but adore the thimble holder as it is.

thimbleholderIII, parvasedapta.ch

Anyway, I decided to give the second version a completely different design. Maybe it is because I am longing for some warmth, maybe it was too late in the evening and me being ridiculous, this is what my mind came up with:

thimbleholderII, parvasedapta.ch

This time I hid the straps beneath the palm’s trunks. The red around the thimble is meant to be a fire, the thimble being a cauldron with the dinner cooking inside (as I said, it was late).

I don’t know why the original tutorial kept the straps visible, but of course, if you cover the cardboard completely, you could as well hide the straps beneath it and make a design completely independent (but it is interesting to think of designs with them as well, imagine a thimble holder bearing the Spanish coat of arms with the Pillars of Hercules on each side, how very elevated).

Deutsche Version

Als ich kurz vor Weihnachten ein schönes Motiv für einen Weihnachtspost suchte, stiess ich auf diese niedliche Anleitung, eigentlich gedacht für Kinder, um ihrer Mutter eine Kleinigkeit zu Weihnachten zu basteln. Es ist ein kleiner Fingerhut-Halter aus einer Streichholzschachtel, in die Spalten an den Seiten kann man noch kleine Nadelbriefchen stecken.

Weihnachten war dann doch etwas knapp um das noch nachzubasteln, zumal ich keine klassische Streichholzschachtel finden konnte, nur -heftchen oder diese flachen Schachteln. Am Ende fand ich eine leicht grössere Schachtel zuhause sowie eine auf vintage getrimmte Mini-Schachtel in einem Hipster-Laden (für 1,50CHF, pffft).
Die Originalgrösse dürfte also ziemlich genau zwischen meinen beiden Versionen liegen.

Für euch brauch ich die Anleitung ja nicht übersetzen, klickt auf das Bild oben, dann sollte alles gut zu lesen sein.

Das Basteln ging dann recht schnell, allerdings war es doch ziemlich friemelig und ich kann mir kaum vorstellen, dass kleine Kinderhände das ohne Hilfe und Frust basteln könnten (alleine diese Streifen aus dem Deckel schneiden in der Grösse), möglicherweise bin ich da aber auch zu sehr Perfektionist und ein Kind hätte so etwas nicht so schön komplett mit Buntpapier bezogen.
Als ich dann mit der ersten Version fertig war, sah es zwar aus wie auf der Zeichnung, aber irgendwie erinnerte es mich sehr an einen Grabstein. Vielleicht sieht eine Mutter nur die liebevolle Bastelei ihres Nachwuchses, ich sehe wie ein Kind seiner Mutter zu Weihnachten einen Papiergrabstein mit ihren Initialen schenkt. Wie aufmerksam!

Wie auch immer, ich beschloss, das zweite Design sollte ein wenig anders, weniger friedhöflich sein.
Möglicherweise liegt es an dem Sonnenmangel Ende Januar, vielleicht war es auch einfach etwas spät am Abend und ich albern wie ein übermüdetes Kind, heraus kam die “Wie eine einsame Insel sicher nicht ist aber jeder sie sich vorstellt”-Idylle.

Man beachte die roten Dreiecke um den Fingerhut, erkennt man, dass es ein Kessel mit Abendessen über dem Feuer sein soll?

thimble holder, parvasedapta.ch

Man kann sich noch eine Vielzahl weiterer Variationen einfallen lassen, wie beispielsweise diesen geschwungenen oberen Abschluss anders formen, so dass er nicht mehr wie ein Grabstein aussieht. Oder man kann, wenn man wie ich das ganze Ding in Buntpapier wickelt, die Kartonlaschen komplett verschwinden lassen und ist dann ganz frei in seinem Design. Aber mit den Laschen rumzualbern macht auch Spass, warum nicht einen Fingerhuthalter mit dem spanischen Wappen, gehalten von zwei Kartonlaschen den Säulen des Herakles.

Auf jeden Fall finde ich es nicht nur ein niedliches Geschenk für Mütter zu Weihnachten wie es 1925 mal angedacht war, sondern auch ein schönes Mitbringsel für eine nähende Freundin.

Und weil so ein Projekt Erinnerungen an gemütliches Basteln an kalten Wintertagen wach ruft und weil meine grössere Variante dazu passend auch noch ein wenig Sonnenschein verbreitet geht es mit diesem kleinen Papierprojekt zum Krea-Kränzchen von Kaffeeliebelei und Palandurwen, dessen Januar-Motto ganz passend “Warme Gedanken” ist.
Und weil es ja auch ein Upcycling-Projekt ist, darf es auch zum Upcycling-Dienstag im Februar.

See you soon, love


Sweater makeover inspirations

Despite some warmer days in between snow and frozen rain, the northern hemisphere can’t deny that we will have to face another few weeks of cold and wintery weather, although we grew tired of our pullovers and wool scarfs and the other stuff our winter wardrobe consists of. Maybe one of the sweaters even caught a little hole or stain during the Christmas dinner, but buying a new one feels like asking the winter winds to stay even longer, what is the last thing we want.
Below a page to help us out of this misery. Wether we grew tired of the old sweaters or are just bored because the grey outside seems not to have changed since the middle ages and we need something to brighten our day as long as the sun is on holiday. Or if we need to cover a little accident on an otherwise perfectly loved garment 😉

This page I found in the “Marie Claire”-issue from november 8th 1941, a french fashion magazine that is still published today (though they don’t include DIY-ideas anymore, maybe because this category has its own spin-off today, the “Marie Claire idees”)

parvasedapta.ch - Marie Claire, Nov. 8th 1941
click to enlarge

(clockwise from the upper left)

The rays:
Add ribbons or strips of felt to the sweater, make large stitches with buttonhole- or embroidery thread to attach them (the original advise is to use cord, but I imagine this being a little too thick to work with. And when you use felt keep in mind that the felt is either washable or that you won’t be able to wash the pullover anymore).

The monogram:
Cut sleeves, shoulders and the letters of your monogram from old socks with a tartan pattern or use a piece of jersey fabric in a contrasting colour for this, attach to the sweater as shown (no advice, but I love the idea of giving old patterned socks a second life).

The riser/inset
Use an old piece of knitting, a jersey fabric leftover or some wool to turn into an inset, add a white collar.

The diagonals:
Crochet a cord to attach to the sweater as shown. Put the pullover on to pin the cord in place before sewing it (to use a crocheted cord is not a bad idea considering the pullover to stretch when worn. Elastic lace could maybe serve as an alternative. If you want to use ribbon, try first if it really works when worn).

The little bows:
Arrange little bows made from narrow ribbon in different colours on the front of the sweater and sew in place (isn’t it too cute?).


I hope you like the ideas, let me know if you try one of them,
see you soon, love,


Last minute crafting ideas

Well, what should I say? I didn’t finish the Christmas dress.
I am not far from doing it, so I am still positive (though not entirely sure) to wear it for Christmas Eve.
The last weeks have simply been too much. I am not at all content with the posts I wrote during this sew-along, inexpressive photos of fraying half-assembled whatevers are exactly the sort of thing I did not want to show anymore, they are nothing I am happy to share, neither are they interesting to look at, I assume.
Maybe challenges where you show only completely finished garments are more my kind of thing. So I am not sure if I should join a sew-along anytime soon again.
To throw me even further back I spent half the night awake with stomachache and shivering. As you can imagine that leaves me a bit off today.

Only very short what I have done on the dress, in case you are still curious: The dress itself is done. The belt is ready to be attached to it as are the collar and the jabot. I still have to add the closure (hidden press buttons), stiffen, assemble and attach the cuffs and cut the velvet border for the hem.

Now while I try to recover and clean this mess that is supposed to be a Christmassy-decorated flat, I will leave you with a scan of some Christmas motifs I found in the December 12th 1925 issue of my “Schweizerische Unterhaltungsblätter”.

click to enlarge
click to enlarge

I won’t translate the text, but will only paraphrase it:

These are supposed to be Christmassy-looking nativity set animals and comets that can be realized in a variety of techniques.
The easiest way would be to cut them from eg. paper and glue them together to use as table decoration or for a door frame. Very quick as well would be to do this as appliqué in felt or cloth. To use as cushion cover, book sleeves and the like you can also make them, very modern, from cut leather. And of course simple painting them is quickly done and highly effective as well.
The wreath is meant to be copied as a complete circle and can be used for doilies and similar things, but also for leather, wood painting or embroidered items.
The bookmark [I suppose they mean the motif on the far right] is made from sheepskin and very solid, it can easily be cut with scissors. You can deepen the lines by dampening the leather with cold water and retrace them with a pointy object, a needle or something similar. An alternative would be to burn the lines.

I think the motifs look very special and unexpectedly abstract, nothing I would connect with old fashioned christmas decoration.

See you soon, and if I won’t manage to post in the next two days,

Merry Christmas to you all!

Love, ette

How to combine colours – table from 1924

I found this interesting table in a 1924 Dressmaking book. Actually the “Women’s Institute Library of Dressmaking” consists of multiple books, but I only own Volume 2 which covers “Harmony in dress – Beautiful clothes, corsets and dress foundations, silhouettes, colors, fabrics, good taste in dress, millinery and accessories, the dressmaker and tailor shop, european shops”.

This table gives you hints on how to combine different colours in street and evening wear, arranged according to wether they can be used as a second major colour, for accents or only in small doses as trimming. I wouldn’t agree with all the given advises from my modern point of view, but it is very interesting to see what colour combinations were modern and considered interesting  90 years ago. And it can provide help when choosing fabrics and colour combinations to recreate a garment as correctly as possible.

click on the image to see it in full size
click on the image to see it in full size


See you soon, love


Some projects should remain unfinished…

Somehow I like sewing and working with fabric more than working with yarn, knitting or chrocheting. Funny thing is, I do crochet from time to time, always smaller projects and I do like it. I like to embroider, too. So maybe it is not because I don’t like it, but that I do it too occasionally to fall in love with.

All I can say is that passion hasn’t struck me yet, I hardly know how to knit and I don’t see me learning it properly in the near future.

In consequence this means that the majority of tutorials in my antique crafting (not sewing) magazines remain cryptic to me, as an estimated 95% are knitting tutorials.

To find a chrocheting project that is not toddler-sized or toddler-related is quite hard, if I recollect correctly I counted two or three projects in a whole stack of magazines. So my choice was quite limited.
in the end I went for the one I liked best, though I can’t say it intrigued me.

pattern consists only of double crochet and front post double crochet, so quite simple actually.

To make this cardigan you are asked to enlarge the pattern scheme on the top left to its original size and chrochet after this drawing so that it fits the pattern, decreasing and increasing as needed. Sounded as if I could handle that.
Because it was measured to fit a size 46 (way too large for me) I altered it quite heavily. And maybe I exagerated a little with the waist circumference and the waist-hip-ratio, you’ll see later.

In hindsight I should have foreseen that this project was doomed. First, the only wool I had enough of (I didn’t want to buy new wool for this test run) was a structured cotton-viscose-wool in white and bright green. This meant I had to make stripes because otherwise it wouldn’t suffice. A white and green striped jacket, I mean…seriously?

Second, the cover. Sorry, but this baby freaks me out (relieving it isn’t staring at me and points its gorgon-eyes at someone else). And this naked doll plunging upside down beside it, oh dear…evil.

Frauen-Fleiss (=women’s diligence), issue 7 (march), volume 1942/3

And the last hint, I felt it very early. May I quote myself, this is what I wrote about this project as early as ten months ago:

Mh, and there is this hilarious crocheted pullover, I am not sure I even want to complete.

Well, what should I say. I kept on working on it until a couple of months ago. Now in the new flat I stumbled over it and put it on my dress form.

DSC_0002 (2)wm

ummm…any questions left? Hilarious hits it, doesn’t it? Or would awkward be a better word for this?

DSC_0001 (2)wm
Is it only me who finds this bookshelf-backround distrackting? I should search for another photo-location…
Oh, but I have been searching for this cat-shaped timer for weeks. Hooray for distracting backgrounds!

Here you see what I meant with a too sharp waist-hip-ratio. First it looks odd with the ridges and second it seems to be too large at the hips, the hem is dropping quite poorly on the sides (not to mention that this is in no way a 40ies waistline).

DSC_0003 (2)wm


The shoulderseams are very (read too) narrow stretching the armhole into a very pointy shape on the shoulder and the sleeves aren’t even started off with.

So this is the biggest appearance this dissipation of (admittedly ugly) yarn has ever had and will ever get. Because I have come to the conclusion it would be the best to simply throw it away.

And to draw at least something positive from this project, I searched for better tutorials in this Frauen-Fleiss-issue to share with you.
First, a cute idea for children, a bowling game made from waste. The pins on the left are made from empty cleaning powder packages, today you could use the ones from Pringles eg. (at least here in Europe the vast majority of cleaning products is liquid and doesn’t come in cardboard tubes anymore). The pins on the lower left are made of empty thread spools. A shame these wooden spools aren’t that common anymore, they look great as pins.
What I find most interesting is how the balls are made. One is an old stocking filled with wadding or sawdust and completey covered with large buttonhole stitched to stabilize it. The other one is made by covering a little rock with wet and scrunched up newspapers. Smooth the surface and let it dry in the bright sunlight. Afterwards cover it with yarn as the drawing shows. This sounds as it could be a pretty heavy and painful ball, depending on the rock’s size and how hard you scrunch the paper.

click to see full size

And the second one, handbags to fit your suit or coat, made from leftover fabric. Though I always thought the handbag doesn’t have to match the coat, but the shoes 😛

click to see full size

So much for today, hope the next crocheting project will be more successful,