Spring Fashions Lookbook with Mrs Depew Vintage


Spring is here and I've been sorting my closets, planning to fill in the gaps with more home-sewn vintage this year. I'm hoping to sew several pairs of trousers, basic blouses and a few beautiful cotton sun dresses.

Today, I'd like to share the 2014 Spring Pattern Lookbook that I put together for Mrs Depew Vintage.

I hope that you enjoy samples of spring formal wear, picnic-worthy day dresses and smart separates with these print and draft-at-home patterns.

As always, readers save 15% off at Mrs Depew with code VAVOOM. If you see a pattern that you'd like, be sure to check out Anna's lookbook pattern guide for links!

Also, don't forget to join in the Sew For Victory Sew-Along with Lucky Lucille!

E Course: Bloggerific! A Guide to a Beautiful, Successful Blog


After starting this project two years ago, it is finally completed! I am so excited to offer you my brand new e course, "Bloggerific: a guide to a beautiful, successful blog".

In my vintage themed e course, I teach you everything I know about blogging from creating a beautiful design to increasing traffic and making money.

Bloggerific is an online course in blog format, so you can read along as you would any other blog and complete homework along the way, at your own pace. You will have access to the ecourse forever so you can go back to reference things later, if needed. This course was written for both new and established bloggers.  You'll learn:

How To Brand Your Blog
Create a unique, custom look and feel for a beautiful blog that stands out among the rest

Writing Tips and SEO
Optimize your posts and blog design and build relevant links all over the web to increase your traffic. With these writing and brain storming tips, you'll always have a pile of great blog post ideas.

DIY Blog Design
12 step by step tutorials to design your own beautiful blog. These tutorials are written for Blogger users.

Blog Photos and Images
Learn to find images that you can legally use on your blog, take your own gorgeous photos and make all of your blog images look great.

Social Networking

Build a following on social sites to increase traffic to your blog with time management ideas so you can spend more time creating and having fun and less time promoting.

Make Money Blogging

Everything I know about how to legitimately make money doing what you love including creative ideas to monetize and how to build and use a media kit

Building Relationships
Form life long friendships, important business relationships and the smart way to deal with negativity in the blog world.

Maintaining Your Blog
stay organized, plan for the future and create an amazing editorial calendar to keep you on track

Tools and Resources
A list of over 50 wonderful online tools and resources to fuel your creativity and help your blog run smoothly.

Bonus Printables: this course includes a beautiful set of retro styled printables for your blog binder to keep you organized:

                                                   Buy the Bloggerific E Course   $30

After successful payment completion, you will be directed to the access page. If you are not directed to the access page or have any problems, please email me at

Vintage Jewelry Sale!


For those who follow along on facebook and instagram, you probably already heard about the big vintage jewelry sale going on on my facebook page today.

My sister in law, Nellie has had this vintage jewelry box sitting around for a long time. It's loaded with costume jewelry from her great aunt, Letty.

Letty was born around 1906 and worked as a secretary for an electrical components company. Although she did fall in love at least once, she never married and she lived with her sister, Esther as spinsters.  My father in law told me that they never threw anything away and he was able to rescue a big stack of 1940s and 50s newspapers, some of which were given to Pj and I to enjoy.

Nell texted me a few weeks ago to ask if I could help her sell these things. She said she'll never wear them and would love to see them go to someone who enjoys them. We had a lot of fun sorting through it all, looking at maker's marks and joking over this brooch that looks like the squid-like robots from The Matrix.

This week, you can shop Aunt Letty's jewelry box on facebook!

Policies and Such:
To purchase, comment with your paypal address and zip code. A paypal invoice will be sent to you and items will be shipped after payments received. Items sold will be marked SOLD. Multiple purchases will get combined shipping. US shipping is $3, please comment for inquiries on international shipping.  Payments and shipping will be handled by Nellie, I'm just here to show you the pretties. Some of these pieces have missing rhinestones or other small flaws so please make sure to read the entire listing before making a purchase and feel free to ask questions!

A 1939 Party


1930s 1940s vintage plus size dress and pin curl hairstyle

Last night, I was invited to a party at a local vintage lady's house. The theme was 1939.  I don't know how "1939" my outfit was but after trying on over a dozen dresses, this was the one that I really loved. The party was absolutely fantastic! Our hostesses home was built in the late 20s and all of her furniture, home decor and dishes were right out of the 30s. We listened to 1930s music, ate 1930s party food and the guests were all kinds of people- many teachers, historians and eccentrics all gathered to enjoy good company, fabulous fashion and a step back in time.  Sadly, my phone died shortly after arrival so I wasn't able to document a single thing but some things are best left to the memory and experience.

1930s 1940s vintage plus size dress and pin curl hairstyle

I tried a new hairstyle, using my normal willy-nilly pin curl set as the base. I curled, twisted and pinned it here and there until I liked it. If I can achieve this look again, I'll post a tutorial for you!

I also wore 1940s silver souvenir brooches, one from great grandma Alma and the other from great great grandma Florence, while they were in Hawaii.

1930s 1940s vintage plus size dress and pin curl hairstyle

On a side note, its time to order a new remote for my camera. I used the silly 10 second timer for these and as you can see, it didn't turn out very well!  It may be time for my husband to return to his post of official blog photographer.

Thank you to S. for inviting me to her beautiful party and to the great new friends for their fascinating stories and company.

1930s 1940s vintage plus size dress and pin curl hairstyle

1940s dress- warehouse
black and blue bakelite bangles- all over the place
Miss Albright pumps-ebay
brooches- heirlooms

See Va-Voom Vintage in Sew News Magazine


sew news magazine va voom vintage bullet bra free pattern

This morning the kids and I ran to the store for some new makeup for a vintage party tonight. While I was out, I dropped into JoAnne Fabrics to pick up the April/May issue of Sew News Magazine. My Va-Voom Bullet Bra is featured on page 73 !

sew news magazine va voom vintage bullet bra free pattern

Sew News Magazine featured a two part article on bra making with the first section printed in the February/March issue. There's loads of great tips on bra making and finding patterns. I especially love the handy fitting tips and how to alter your pattern for the perfect fit.

sew news magazine va voom vintage bullet bra free pattern

Thank you, Sew News for featuring my bra! Download the free Va Voom Bullet Bra Pattern and follow along with my sew-along.

For more bullet bra inspiration, check out my group pin board, Va-Voom Bullet Bras

A Tiny Last Minute Tea Party


This week, I'm doing spring cleaning. It's so good to de-clutter, air out the house and get organized so I have more time for fun. While I sort through canisters of sewing supplies and jewelry, the kids are enjoying a tiny last minute tea party on the front porch.

I let them use one of my plastic vintage table cloths and some melamine dishes for their nibbles. I love these small melamine plates and bowls for their snacks! Olivia thrifted this tea set a few days ago and she's been itching to give it a proper test drive.

I love Lilo's little retro porch chair, which matches our glider. I bought this set from Lowes a few years ago and am kicking myself for not buying another matching chair for Rhys. I hope they bring it back!

I hope that you are all enjoying your first days of spring as much as we are!

Sew for Victory 2014


lucky lucilles sew for victory 2014

Its time again for Lucky Lucille's Sew For Victory sew-along. I love sharing my projects and seeing what others come up with too. I always seem to run late on sew-alongs but this time, I'm picking something really simple.

My wardrobe is in desperate need of more jeans. With mom living in the country now and a garden to plant in a few months, I must have jeans and overalls for working outdoors and fishing. Last year I sewed a pair of overalls and jeans from the Wearing History pattern and I love them so much, I think I'll crank out a few more pairs. I have always wanted to buy some of those fab repro jeans but for the cost of one, I can make 2 or 3 pairs myself!

1940s reproduction war time overalls and jeans for women sewing pattern

1940s plus size jeans and overalls for homefront war time women

To complete my jeans outfit, I'm sewing Mrs Depew's 1940s wrap blouse. I sewed two of these for Daffny from A Vintage Nerd a few years ago- one in cotton and one in a stretchy tee shirt material.

1940s wrap blouse sewing pattern pdf
 Save 15% off at Mrs Depew Vintage with code VAVOOM

This one so cute and quick to put together and I love anything with a sweetheart neckline. I can pair these blouses with my jeans, overalls or a skirt this summer. I'm undecided on fabric for this one. I really loved the way Daffny's tee shirt blouse turned out so I may sew one or two of those.

Pollywogs and Vintage Treasures


Hello again, everyone! I feel like I've been away from here for a long time so here's a little photo update of my recent adventures, which I've been sharing on my Instagram. Today, I'm in the country, visiting my parents and grandparents. The weather has been so beautiful lately so the kids and I have been enjoying a lot of time outside.

Yesterday, we caught pollywogs from the pond and the kids had a blast sitting in the yard, watching them swim around in the bucket. However, at one point I really did think I saw Rhys with one in his mouth! I yelled from the house "Beets! Is there a pollywog in your mouth?!" Thankfully, I was mistaken and all of the little babies were happily returned to the pond that afternoon.

On a quick trip to town, we stopped at my favorite little thrift store in Bourbon, Missouri and I found a Bakelite spacer for 25 cents! I always look for Bakelite in small towns but aside from the odd Bakelite handled cutlery, this is the first piece I've found.  To help you on your hunting adventures, check out my previous post, How to Identify Bakelite.

Since my grandpa is visiting this weekend, I spent a few nights next door at grandma's country house. She often goes to auctions while she's here on the weekends and finds the quirkiest antiques to decorate her home.

One of my favorite parts about grandma's guest room is the beautiful view in the morning. Sometimes, you can spot wild turkey or deer hanging out in the front yard. Mom snapped this picture of a few turkeys in the fall.

Later today, I think the kids and I will build a fairy house with some moss, acorns and other findings from the pond and meadows.

On The Bookshelf- Astor Place Vintage


Digging through boxes, old attics and flea markets, we've all found a captivating photo or letter written on crumbled paper. We wonder who that person was and what are the stories behind some of our most loved vintage treasures. Could it be that you are more connected to that person from the past than you thought?

Astor Place Vintage,  a beautiful novel by Stephanie Lehmann, begins with Amanda. She's a modern girl like many of us who owns a vintage clothing shop. On a normal meeting to buy new store inventory from an eldery lady, she comes upon a curious Victorian era diary hidden in a trunk of antique clothing.

The diary belonged to Olive, a woman ahead of her time who dreamed of breaking away from society's idea of how a woman should live. In the same city and a hundred years apart, the diary reveals that the two are more connected than they would have ever believed.

As spring arrives and old houses open up for estate sales, dig a little deeper into a box and maybe you'll find secrets from the past too.

Order your copy of Astor Place Vintage and read more about author, Stephanie Lehmann and her research on Astor Place Vintage on her website.

Astor Place Vintage is a sponsor of Va-Voom Vintage

How to Wear Vintage Without Feeling Costumed


how to wear vintage clothing without feeling costumed

I recently received a question from a reader asking how to wear and enjoy her vintage treasures without feeling like she's in a costume. Some of us do love to wear costumes and absolutely would on a daily basis if we could. However, some of us prefer to keep a modern look and maintain some of our current personal style or simply not look like a cast member of a living history museum (which certainly isn't a bad thing either!). You can achieve a lot of authentic vintage looks that have a place in a modern girl's lifestyle. Here are my tips for how to wear vintage without feeling costumed.

Experiment with accessories first

Try jewelry, scarves, handbags and an occasional vintage hat. Carry a 1940s crochet handbag with jeans or a work outfit and start a collection of vintage earrings or brooches to wear daily. As you experiment with accessories, you'll quickly develop your vintage style and learn what styles you like and what you don't.  Check out my brooch crafting e-book for 12 DIY vintage brooch projects to add to your modern wardrobe.

vintage 1940s 1950s work office wear

Play with prints

If you sew , look for fabric prints that remind you of your favorite eras. Sew a modern blouse in a great 30s feedsack repro fabric, classic gingham, polka dot or plaid. Today's fashion designers are heavily influenced by vintage so check department stores like Target, Penny's and Kohl's for vintage prints in modern clothes.

Simplify a Vintage Dress

If you find a great 50s dress that you love, keep it modern with a simple hair style and minimal accessories. Retro is very "in" right now so a 60s style dress looks great with current hair and makeup trends. Freshen up a 60 year old dress with modern jewelry and shoes.

vintage 1950s 1940s casual comfortable fashion

Relax in Casual Daywear

Not every 1940s woman wore victory rolls or suits every day. There are a lot of great casual pieces that you can play with in your current wardrobe.

look for:
peasant blouses
high waist jeans
capri pants
wedges or ballet flats
button up blouses

1940s college fashion jeans boyfriend sweater tee shirt and marilyn monroe

Look to the Icons

The reason why we still admire looks from Jackie, Audrey and Grace today is because their style was timeless. A woman could wear any of their hair, makeup and clothes looks today and no one would ask if she's in a play. These style icons leaned towards sleek lines, smooth hair, fresh makeup and solids. 

vintage 1940s 1950s comfortable casual fashion pants Betty White Rita Hayworth

Ultimately, never wear anything that makes you feel uncomfortable about yourself. A fashionable person's most important accessory is confidence.

Shop Talk


Good morning everyone. I hope that you enjoy my newest feature, Shop Talk, which will be replacing my monthly "Hello Sponsors" post. Check monthly Shop Talk posts for news on what's coming up in the vintage world, exclusive coupons and sales, favorite blogs and beautiful things from my sponsors.

Blogland Buzz

Earlier this week, I shared a graphic on Revlon colors that are still sold today on facebook and instagram and a few of you makeup savvy girls mentioned the new release of the Revlon Legacy collection this spring. Some of us were unsure when the re-released colors would hit the shelves but Daffny posted a link to this great map of stores in the US that carry them. As soon as this dreadful ice melts in my home town, I'm going to scout out my local drug stores for them!

I love those peach shades! Here's a really fun 1956 commercial for Revlon's Snow Peach

Frantic About Frances, maker of amazing vintage inspired lingerie is coming out with a new clothing line- Daywear for Dames! I can't wait to see her beautiful new designs.

Sales and Coupons

Save 10% off all retro unmentionables at Kuhmillion Lingerie. Use code perfect10 at the register

In getting ready for new stock, Modcloth has a ton of cute spring dresses currently on sale, under $50

What are you reading?

The Glamorous Housewife recently blogged about one of her most important routines- meal planning. Bethany shares her tips for finding new recipes, getting inspired for dinner and creating balanced meals.  I am also a big meal planner and agree, you can save so much time, money and ensure that the family is being well fed instead of doing last minute convenience foods.

I recently found Dear Mr. Rabbit via her Instagram feed. (I love Instagram! I'm discovering so many inspiring people to read) and am loving her amazing style. Taygan is from Australia and blogs about her personal vintage style, sewing adventures and fashion inspiration.

Everyday Fashions of the 1940s
From the Everyday Fashions series, this book covers the 1940s as seen in Sears catalogs. Find great inspiration for what they really wore back then.

A Dictionary of Costume and Fashion
a beautiful reference book for fashion lovers and a great resource for bloggers too. This dictionary defines over 10,000 fashion terms including hat types, parts of a shoe, fabrics and more.

Beautiful Things

 One of my favorite things to do in the spring is go on picnics. Seriously, I am one picnic loving girl. We do breakfast picnics by the Missouri river, night time picnics for dinner in the park. Some days, the kids and I have picnic lunches on the front porch. This month's beautiful theme is all about picnic time- wicker, floral prints and what to wear while dining outdoors. 
View the mini style guide below featuring:
 Lady Eve Millinery, Bitter Root Vintage, Patterns from the Past and Love That Lingers

 This post contains links to sponsors and affiliates. Please view my full disclosure policy

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