November 19, 2010

"Record" time

Yes! I sort of promised a weekly feature, didn't I?
These are practical garments and sports clothes for spring 1952. Hm, I would wear the outfit on the right. And the trench-like coat.

When I first showed these magazines, several of you asked for a glimpse of the pattern sheets. Well, take a deep breath and hold on to your chair because this is what they look like in "Record":

And we complain about Burda's pattern sheets....
As you may be able to make out in this labyrinth of lines, there are no multisize patterns, like those we're used to. Although many of the patterns in this magazine are available in two sizes, the techinque of showing the sizes nested together on the pattern sheet doesn't seem 'en vogue' in 1952.

The pattern sheets came with this sheet of lovely technical drawings. Honestly, I would gladly have paid those 5 euros (for which I bought the two magazines, with their pattern sheets) for this sheet alone. The tech drawings themselves are less clear and less necessary than those of today's sewing magazines. After all, they are just line versions of the (already quite clear) fashion drawings on the other pages. However, this sheet shows all the pattern pieces, giving the pattern geek I am a wonderful glimpse of the bare bones of the fashions shown. Without hours of painstaking tracing.

Of course, I will try and trace some of these patterns. The smallest bust size mentioned is 88 cm, which is still a lot bigger than mine. But I think I'll just try and make a muslin of one of the (few) patterns in that size anyway. For all I know, they are talking finished measurement, rather than body size. Or they presume you'd be wearing a cone bra. In which case everything but the bust might sort of fit.
The annoying thing is that no other measurements are given. No waist or hip width, no waist length. Nothing. I can't believe all women in the 1950's had the same proportions. Although, of course, the wearing of girdles and longline bras may have helped a bit there...
Another surprise is the absence of anything like sewing instructions. Although amounts and kinds of fabric needed are mentioned on the fashion pages and there are those nice tech drawings, that's it. There isn't even a fabric lay-out drawing. Apperently, the home seamstress was supposed to know how to put together a dress or coat. Collars and pockets and flounces and finishes were probably supposed to have been part of a young lady's upbringing. I should ask my grandmother about that...


  1. Holy Cow...those sheets look complicated, but they most likely are not. You are really having a good time with the Record!

  2. Wow, those pattern sheets are crazy! I agree, you'd probably have more luck adapting your own slopers with the details from the patterns as shown on the tech sheet. That split-skirt is neat looking... :)

  3. How interesting. I'd Frame the pattern sheet and hang it in my craft room. It's a work of art!

  4. By any chance, would it be possible for you to post a version that enlarges when clicked?

  5. Sorry, I don't know why the pictures don't enlarge. I upload them normally and they are big enough. So far, no one has been able to tell me what to do differently.

  6. I would wear all of those designs! Those pattern sheets look horrific... tracing the pieces would be exhausting enough to put off all but the most determined seamstress...
    Of course, the line drawings are just to remind you what this particular pattern is going to end up looking like, once it is finished. I can't wait to see your first project from this magazine.

  7. I've got some "Marion" magazines from the sixties, same story with the pattern sheets, but at least they gave a cutting layout. I've yet to try one of them though.