Tom & Jerry, Cath Kidson and Mrs Line of Holloway

I spent last Saturday afternoon engaged in one of my favourite activities, charity shopping with my friends T and M. We had a lovely afternoon and all returned home with bulging bags of goodies.

It is hard to decide which of my purchases I like best. The best bargain was certainly the unused Cath Kidson bag. Especially as I has been thinking that morning that I would need to get a new shoulder bag, before my current one completely falls apart.

I also go this retro/vintage dress which is very cute and wearable.

But if I have to pick a favourite it would have to be the 1990s Tom & Jerry sheets, which were just €2!!!!!
At T's suggestion I'm planning to turn them into a pair of pyjamas. I think I want to go for quite a traditional pyjama design, piping, pockets and all. Possibly making use of Closet Case Files Carolyn pattern.

Then, on Tuesday, the postman delivered a parcel from my mum containing this;

A Second World War guide to smart dressmaking, full of lots of handy hints and tip.

Possibly the best sentences come on the first page when, explain the need for the booklet, it states conversationally;

Well - let's face it - women's traditional aptitude with the needle is more legend than fact. It's by no means every women who can sew by instinct. Lots of them bungled through the mending and called it a day. Repairs were as far as they could go.  Anything which savoured of creative skill - such as renovations and remodelling (let alone dressmaking proper) - was quite beyond their scope.

Ouch - that's put you in your place ladies, nothing that 'savours of creative skill' for you! And, don't even think about 'dressmaking proper'. Although rather harshly worded there is, probably, a bit of truth behind the statement, and there is certainly no reason why women should be natural needlewomen.

As well as the home truths and handy hints the book also has some fantastic adverts, here are just two of the ones I like best. (Note the amount of copy - not like today's adverts with limited text and short catch phrases).

Four blouses from dressmaking cuttings??? Mrs Line of Holloway must have been some kind of magician or, alternatively, her children where wearing some pretty unusual patchwork clothing! I suspect she would think me very unadventurous for only planning to turn a pair of sheets into a pair of pyjamas. Oh well, you have to start somewhere.