* Between The Sea (the Med) and The Alps -- {Pronounce: ontruh la mair eh lay zalp}

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Becoming a teenage sleuth

Nancy Drew 1Contests can be fun.  Sewing contests that stretch creativity can be fun.  Provided one can reach inside and pull out some semblance of creativity.   The current contest I am attempting really involves some imagination, and I didn't know if I was up to it.  However, succeeding at a challenge is rewarding, so I really put on my thinking cap.  But just how does a book provide inspiration for creating a wearable garment?  Not a costume, not a period piece, but something appropriate for wearing currently, yet reflecting a particular literary work.

While some contestants were considering abstract themes, I needed something more concrete.  And suddenly, the inspiration arrived.  I'm going back in my own world about 55 years to a favorite character who I'm taking back about 15 years earlier than that.  I'm turning myself into a 1940's Nancy Drew!

Nancy Drew 2
Dress pattern
Nancy Drew 3
Jacket pattern

So how does someone at my stage of life accomplish that?  Well, the current craze for vintage really helps.  I just happen to have a new dress pattern I've never made that reflects the 1940's, and I do keep seeing the style concept in old photos.  I even have some fabric somebody gave me that seemed perfect for the period and the style. 

Then I realized that I had an old 1980's jacket pattern I've always wanted to make for myself, and the '80s reflected the '40s.  I even had some old fabric that would give me a very utilitarian jacket for today yet complete Nancy's outfit.  And thus, I was all set.

Nancy Drew 5
A 1940's trendy teenager
Once I had the outfit, I needed to learn how to look the period.  Did you know that the term "teenager" only came about in the 1940's?  After the war, there was a big push to reach the teen market.  The famous teen magazine Seventeen was born during that period to give teen girls lots of beauty advice with helpful hints on all the products they could buy! 

Nancy Drew 4
A fun hat creation
Thanks to the vintage craze, there are lots of websites on how to style 1940's hairdos.  As hats were quite popular then, I was really pleased that our house just happened to come with an old-fashioned hat I never knew what to do with but intrigued me enough to keep.

Nancy Drew 6
Jumping into history
Nancy Drew 7
Original book cover art
The next question was how do I depict my character in photos for the contest once I was dressed in the garments I'd made and attempted period styling?  Just wearing some old style clothing doesn't necessarily convey a book character.  For better or for worse, we managed to come up with some ideas that hopefully tie everything all together.

If you'd like to see how the whole concept evolved, please check out my contest review, as I went into quite a bit of detail there.

Ah, the paths of life we end up going down that we could never foresee in our youth!


  1. I've commented on PR. Love your post - great inspiration.

  2. This outfit is so cute on you and I think you should win!!


Blogger seo tips