Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Vintage Thingies Thursday: Singer Sewing Book by Mary Brooks Picken

It has been quite some time since the last Vintage Thingies Thursday post, and in keeping with the Vintage Notions giveaway I thought you might enjoy seeing a few images of Mary Brooks Picken's work in the Singer Sewing Book from 1949:

I love the Dedication at the front of the book:

This book is dedicated to women and girls--
and especially to teachers of sewing everywhere--
who enjoy the feel of fabric, the beauty of textures,
the precision of stitches, the smoothness of seams, 
and who delight always in appropriate fabrics
carefully cut and made up for a happy purpose.

The following fashion sketches are help illustrate the techniques in the "Decorative Finishes" chapter and show how designers use these stitches from season to season:

This book has a wealth of sewing information and includes some easy projects (these are similar to--if not the same as--the "magic patterns" that Mary Brooks Picken was known for in her Institute newsletter).  I found out recently that my sewing instructor still uses her copy from time-to-time for the excellent information Ms. Picken's provided!

Don't forget, the Vintage Notions giveaway ends on Friday.  There is still time to enter!


  1. The drawings are so beautiful! The advice in old sewing books is mostly still very useful.

  2. There are a lot of bloggers that would enjoy and love having these books. I do not sew, enjoy seeing vintage things others have.

  3. I never heard of Mary Brooks Picken, but that looks like an interesting book. It was published not too many years before I learned sewing in junior high heme ec.

  4. Those old patterns are charming!I have a vintage Singer Featherweight.

  5. Those drawings are awesome. I have a much newer book that came with one of my Singer machines. I think it's from 1970ish.

  6. Oh, wow...this is a great book....I loved seeing the old patterns, just wonderful. Happy VTT!

  7. I adore Mary Brooks Picken's books and am always on the look out for copies. Lucky you having this one!

  8. The artwork in this book is gorgeous. The dedication describes exactly why I LOVE working with fabric.

  9. What great images of these sewing techniques and fashions. Great post, thanks for linking up with VIF!

  10. Beautiful drawings! Can you imagine actually making gorgeous clothes like those!

  11. What a fabulous book! I love the illustrations. Great VTT!



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