For a little over half a year now, I've been collecting (or is it more like hoarding...) vintage magazines. Mostly those with sewing patterns, but I've also bought some fashion magazines and some general lady's mags with fashion talk in them (the only kind of 'fashion' magazine available in the Dutch language until the late 1960's. Apart from sewing magazines, that is.)
It all started with the 1970's Marions my aunt gave me but since then, I have focussed on an earlier time period. I think my oldest pattern magazine dates from 1912 (a sort of newspaper supplement, 4 pages and a rather rudimentary pattern) but I tend to concentrate on the 1950's. For some reason, pattern magazines (in Dutch, French and German and very occasionally in English) are much more frequently sold on Dutch auction sites then seperate patterns in envelopes. Magazines with lots of great pictures and the patterns to some of them. Because I tend to use any vintage fashion stuff I buy for inspiration rather than as 'direct sources' for my creations, I don't mind.
Today, I want to show you the mid-August 1954 issue of "Femme d'Aujourd'hui", a lady's magazine with a serious focus on fashion and sewing patterns, in French but edited in Belgium.
This is the cover. It came with three free patterns, two on a supplement and one to order free of charge.
This is the pattern included in this magazine: a classic button-down shirt and a straight skirt with two pleats at the back. In size 46.
Of course, there is fashion news. Here are some examples of the lovely new blouses for sale in the late summer of 1954.
And a peek at designer fashion. The dress on the left is by Boss, the one on the right by Manguin.
And of course, there are plenty of very nice designs which the reader could order. How about these lovely sleek dresses? I just love all the inventive collar treatments.
And how about a short cape for the fickle weather ahead? Some kind of cross-over between jacket and cape might be just what I need... And here are three 'stages' of that to study. I just wish I could see the patterns...
And of course there are children's patterns, and knitting ones, and assorted needlework.
Like this rather elaborate embroidery project (the schematics for this are included on the pattern sheet)
And then, there are more lady's patterns. Practical outdoor clothes this time, for the hunt... I guess the supposed social class of the target audience is showing here...
I'm actually skipping over the non-fashion content of the magazine of which there is some. There are stories, a short movie review and articles on beauty and housekeeping. I thought it would be nice to show you some of those, some with pictures:
"Sleeping is not a problem". I guess living conditions in 1950's Belgium, like those in the 1950's Netherlands could still be a bit cramped even 9 years after World War II, so variaties of fold-out and bunk beds could come in handy.
And of course, there are recipes. I think the half-colour print, used here, makes the dishes look particularly unappealing. Or maybe I'm just spoiled.