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Todays Treasure Pattern Talk

Alice Brooks 1950 Designs Catalog

  • Feb 13 2017
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Alice Brooks was one of the bigger names in the Mail Order business. She was hand-in-hand with Laura Wheeler, and far ahead of the others' like Anne Cabot. Each year, starting in the late 1940's, Alice Brooks put out a catalog that was a promotion of their patterns. The books included sewing, quilting, crochet, knitting and embroidery. These patterns were those introduced in the current year, as well as those that were popular in the previous year (or two). When a reader mailed in to the newspaper for a pattern, they could also, for the appropriate charge, receive a copy of the current catalog.

I just finished processing the Alice Brooks 1950 catalog, and thought I'd share a couple pages with you.

The inside cover gets a great description of needlework designs for this time period.

This issue also showcased a number of bags and clutch bags. The pillbox in particular was a hot items in the early 1950's. Notice the doily ... it has a peacock center!

And crocheted chair sets were raging in popularity.

Along with, of course, children outfits.

I purchase these books whenever I come across them. Someday (not soon), I'm going to to through them to compare against the patterns that I have to see how many I'm missing. I'm sure it's a lot.

I've entered the entire album over at Facebook if you'd like to look through it.

Thanks for dropping by,


American Thread Crochet Pattern Leaflets AM & AASQ

  • Jan 19 2017
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I learn a little more each week as I work my way through these vintage crochet and knitting patterns. I'm currently working on McCalls Needwork and Crafts Magazine (1962) and came across the American Thread advertisement.

I have quite a number of American Thread leaflets in my collection. Frequently these patterns are an excerpt of a pattern from one of American Thread's books; presumably issued as a Book Promotion. But in looking at this advertisement, I see that there is no pattern book referenced, just two separate leaflets that are Mail Away offers.

Leaflet AASQ for cardigans and a skirt, and Leaflet AM for three block motifs skirts.

One just had to clip out the pattern offer and mail away with 15 cents (apiece). Now, this was still an American Thread promotion in part ... a promotion for their Dawn Knitting Worsted.

And there .... learn something new everyday. Thanks for dropping by,


Crocheted Bangle Bead Patterns

  • Jan 18 2017
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Over time, the innocent bangle bead has been known be different names .... the Paillette, Spangle, Diamantes. A bangle is basically a sequin, produced in different sizes with the attachment hole on an edge, versus in the middle. In earlier times they were made of thin metals, but when the wide introduction of plastics into the market in the early 1960s, new possibilities were found. Here came the irridiscent colors and a whole realm of pizzazz! Pair this up with the funky wild styles of the 1960's, and well .... you know the rest.

This advertisement, in addition to the bangles, was an offer to a pattern book featuring bangle bead hats. I do not have this particular book, however, I have the one issued previously.

The patterns are pretty much the same, just the numbers and pictured have changed.

Now, dangle beads can be added to most any hat, or other garment. Crocheting them in is particularly effect when working in loop stitch, or, of course, the old fashioned way ... sew them on.

Like this jacket .... imagine the sparkle in evening light.

The 1960's brought out the whimsical in the dangle paillette, however, there's elegant in there as well.

Have you used dangles?

Thanks for dropping by.


A lot of Crochet with a little Thread

  • Jan 3 2017
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For this post, let's go all the way back to a 1945 issue of Woman's Day magazine. Tucked inside the magazine are four pages of pattern promotions that required the reader to send away for the patterns. Woman's Day did not charge for the Mail Order, other than the reader having to include a 3 cent stamp with the request. I've been lucky to find a couple of these sets in my sleuthing.

These patterns were apparently offered as a Coats & Clark's thread promotion; all requiring Mercerized Crochet Cotton, or Tatting Cotton, etc.

This is the copy of the original magazine pages. I've included parts of the text for the patterns as their descriptions are quite delightful and I thought it may be easier to read than off the picture. Have fun looking at those 1945 "prices to make".

Pattern 1 is a jabot collar

A white froth of a fish-net jabot with buttonholes in the center to button over your favorite blouse, or to wear as a ruff around the neck. The finer the thread, the prettier it is. Cost to make 20 cents. (I've often wondered if these were sewn onto clothing as permanent accessory, or attached by some other method ... if you know, please share).

Pattern 2 offers up three attractive trims. Three lovely laces to add lighthearted touches to any frock. Use one as a prim collar on a tailored dress, or add a crisp touch to a pocket and a demure square neckline. Accentuate the shoulder lines of a summer cotton with a frosty ruffle. And nothing can look quite so romantic as, a spun-sugar frill cascading down the front of your special-occasions dress. This pattern is available in the shop as a Free Download.

Red & Black Bag: Plenty of room for everything in this large shoulder-strap bag with its extra saddle pocket on each side. Cost to make it in red and black rug yarn, $1.50

Red Bag: We think big bags are the most useful kind. This one in bright red rug yarn with zipper closing adds a bright note to your costume. Cost to make, $1.25

6 - A chubby pink yarn sacque and matching bonnet for baby in an interesting new stitch. Cost to crochet in wool, about $1.25

7 - Crochet a little girl's skirt and give it firm anchorage with these practical, wide-shouldered suspenders. This one is in sturdy tan wool, with blue stripes, and the tam o'shanter is designed to match. Cost to make, $1.45

8 - Jaunty is the word for this cap, and a welcome change from those under-the-chin bows. Crochet it loosely in wool, 29 cents

Pattern 3 - Sweater:

We selected the smart, practical sweater shown on the opposite page, hoping that everyone would have yarn remnants on hand in several colors. This one is made in gray, brown and black wool. The style has many useful features—it is boxy and bulky enough to use as a jacket for cool summer weather, or with its drawstring waistline bloused, it is perfect over a wool skirt for fall. The close, interesting stitch resembles hand weaving. Cost to make in new wool, $3.50

9. Light and comfortable, a neat little hat made of spun straw. Cost to make. about 5o cents

10. Crochet a fuchsia hat of spun straw and perch shocking-pink flowers on the top to wear for dress-up occasions all summer. Cost to make, about $1.00

11 Filet Teacloth: You may not find enough thread to make the fillet corners of this sparkling tea cloth, but the rose-wreath pattern is one you will want to save for after the war. With a linen center it costs $5.20 to make.

12. Fillet insertion with ribbon design for household linens. Crochet enough for a pillowcase for only 20 cents

13. Plain insertion looks so expensive. Substitute it for worn hemstitching on a pillowcase. To do one, 20 cents.

14. White Doily: Clusters and lacy shells combine in the delicate pattern of this doily. Cost to make one, 10 cents

15. White Doily II: An assortment of stitches make this eight-pointed star design varied and interesting. Cost to make one 10 cents.

16. A formalized dahlia design enhances the center of this fillet doily. To crochet one costs 20 cents

17. Wide insertion in a wild-rose pat tern to keep in mind for our new post war sheets. Enough for one, 8o cent

18. A pointed fillet edging with bow knot design, to give old-fashioned lux ury to a sheet. To make, 6o cents

19. Plain crochet mesh adds a dainty touch to a baby's pillowcase. Use a pastel lining. To crochet, 10 cents

And that's the entire pamphlet set. There's a number of nice designs here. I've entered a number of the patterns to the shop; as designated by the links. If you must have one of the others, let me know and I'll see what I can do. Some of the patterns had too poor picture quality to work with.

Thanks for dropping by,


Crocheted Sachet Pattern; Times Have Changed

  • Jan 1 2017
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This afternoon, I was processing an old Mail Order Pattern --- Anne Cabot's 5064 -- dating back to 1948.

Anne Cabot's 5064 -- It's a sweet pattern that gives directions for three different shapes, called Gift Sachets.

As I was going through the material requirements, I noted that 'Sachet Powder' was listed. Instantly, one of those "I wonder" thoughts took root. I wonder, are Sachet Powers still sold? Now, although I certainly was not around in 1948, I do remember sachet powders.

They were sold in small jars, packets and, my favorite - Avon - had a marvelous shaker bottle.

BUT, to get the results for these Sachet Powders, one must be sure in insert Vintage in front of the search. Because, if you don't, you are going to get a whole lot of pages with products like these ....

(picture from)

So, instead of Sachet Powders being sweet smellers for your underwear drawer or closet), they are now powders you may use to cast a spell .... many different spells in fact.


Thanks for dropping by,


Crochet Barbie Fashion Doll Clothes, Mail Order Designs

  • Dec 19 2016
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It was a glorious year for little girls. It was 1959 and Mattel released a creation of Ruth Handler called the Barbie Doll. Little girls across America were instantly enchanted and the rest is history.

As the Barbie Doll arrived to each home, the next essential need was the wardrobe. Which means, of course, loving Moms pulled out the cloth, scissors and yarn and started sewing, crocheting and knitting clothes fashion outfits for the beloved doll. This, of course, drove the pattern companies to start issuing patterns for those outfit.

I have several of these patterns from the early 1960's found mainly in over-the-counter magazines (like McCalls Needlecraft), as well as several Mail Order Designs. Here, let me show you a few.

Design 525 - Crocheted Bride and Bridemaid's Gowns. Just about every little girl would want these outfits.

Sweet Teen Bride is another bridal outfit (or great party dress without the veil). Did you notice the pineapples?. This pattern was issued as a Coat's and Clarks Leaflet.

Design 199 - Mail Order Pattern - Most likely Anne Cabots. This Design gives us a coat, top, skirt, hat and two choice dresses.

Design 7362, Crocheted Doll's Wardrobe. This Mail Order Design is in the Alice Brooks number series, and gives mix and match options consistent with the times .... notice the ripple poncho.

Tea Time Ensemble - This pattern from The Workbasket features more variations on mix and match options.

Just for fun, a little Barbie Trivia ...

  • Birthdate: March 9, 1959
  • Born: Willows, Wisconsin (a fictional place)
  • First Outfit: One Piece Swimsuit
  • First Hairstyle: Ponytail

I have no doubt a fair number more Fashion Doll patterns will be added to this small collection as I have a a HUGE amount of patterns I've yet to work my way through. The number will, however, be limited by what is in public domain; i.e. 1959 until early 1960's.

Thanks for dropping by,


Vintage Crocheted Trim Handout

  • Mar 23 2015
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This post contains 6 crochet patterns to create several pompom and tassel trims to accessorize your wardrobe.

Another Blog, or Not

  • May 25 2013
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I run my shop on the Highwire Platform. Yesterday they added to our shops functionality, a blog.

Hummmm. A blog. Now, for me, that really means another blog. I have been blogging away over on a Google Blogger for the 3 or 4 years; You may have been there, it's called Todays Treasure Shop Talk.

I do like the idea of my blog being right here in my shop. But I dislike the idea that if I should ever close this shop (you know, have to move to a larger place, or start disliking the neighbors, that all my blog posts wouldn't be able to move with me.

I'll have to think on this for a couple days, weeks, or whatever, and see what I decide. In the meantime, feel free to visit my other blog.

Thanks for dropping in,