Granny's Wardrobe pt. I: The Jacket

It's been some time since I've last written a post strictly about clothes that I did not sew by myself. That does not mean that I now only wear self made garments, mind you. There's still not enough of them to fulfill my desire for different outfits. I do, however, keep my belief that it's good to wear thrifted and vintage clothes. And today's post is going to be a very special one, opening a series of posts on going truly vintage, all thanks to my awesome Grandma.

Ok, so what you probably need to know is: I adore my Gran. And I mean it from the very bottom of my heart. She's the best human being and the most incredible woman I've ever mete. I wrote a few words about her some time ago, mostly covering the topic of clothes my family used to wear in the post-war Poland. What I didn't tell you back then is what kind of a person my Grandma is. And she's, well, the coolest.

She's gonna turn 88 this year and she's thriving. Her hobby is cross stitching and she's been rendering hundreds of works of art this way. For years she's been working from home as a knitter, creating beautiful goods for other people to wear. She also used to create rugs by hand (a hobby very popular in the 1960s), she crocheted, drew and painted. Fairly recently I've learned that she also attended a course for home seamstresses and used to sew clothes --which wasn't a big surprise to me, after all she's a handicraft worker par excellence. After she heard I'm making my own clothes, she waited a few months to make sure my enthusiasm doesn't wane, which was very wise of her, and then she gave me her old sewing machine (Lada T 132, I'll talk about it next time). She's the person who taught me to crochet when I was a kid and tried to teach me knitting (but everyone seems to fail at that for some reason). She's a happy, creative person, deeply devoted to her family and especially to my Grandpa who is very ill now. She once told me that what let her live her life as a happy person was cherishing small things. I try to go by that rule, too.

When we take our regular walks, she still can't get used to the fact her body is not fifty years younger, so her pace is strong and fast (well, until she loses her breath). She laughs with me, tells me fascinating stories from her youth (like when she was 18 and convinced a guy to think she wanted to marry him, made plans to run away with him and then, on the day of their supposed wedding, hidden behind a pillar of the Register Office, she laughed her head off while he was waiting for her, all awkward, flowers in hand --and she never showed up) and from time to time, she invites me to search through her wardrobe.

Well then. I've been scavenging her wardrobe and so far have found loads of crocheting/knitting magazines, skirts and dresses from 1960s onwards, lovely purses and handbags, some beautiful fabrics and a small collection of cute vintage curios including one nylon stocking, lipstick called "Pink T.N.T." and a train ticket from 1954, among others. As more shelves await me, I'm going to have a blast finding new stuff that she had hidden away for years.

Today I present to you The Jacket. I'll keep this brief. It's made of sturdy, thick wool and lined with polyester, it was most probably bought in Vienna in 1960s and it's good as new today. Look at that sweet detail of cotton/wool tape around the edges (Ette, that's that coat-thing, isn't it?). It came as a suit together with a skirt but the skirt was too large for me so I turned it into one of my hoods. It has to be the best piece of clothing that I have that works with our current weird weather of non-winter. It's keeping me warm and allows for a lot more to be put underneath than just the shirt and a lightweight cardi that I wore for the photos. But --it's that warm that I don't really need to wear anything else.

When looking at clothes like this, I feel like I'm being lied to when I go downtown to buy stuff --I mean, I know so many modern clothes will fall apart after two washes. I know that majority of clothes won't last a year. I know that if I take the best possible care, I will be able to wear something through three seasons, rarely more. And here I am, looking at --and wearing! --a jacket that's around 50 years old, was worn a lot in its time and still holds shape, colour and the only thing that shows a little wear are the cuffs --there's slight chafing at the folds if you know what you're looking for. This raises so many questions in my head, questions about capitalism and its rules and about the consciousness of our customer choices and about our awareness of the situation that we've been put in or have been putting ourselves in. It also makes me want to sew more, and learn more about constructing garments that last for a lifetime. Because they can, contrary to what we are being told.

Jacket: vintage, from my Grandma, bought in the 1960s 
Shirt: thrifted 
Cardi: thrifted at Holy Rags 
Skirt: thrifted, turned into pencil shape by me 
Flats: Nord 
Necklace: ? I always forget where I bought my cheap jewellery 
Bag: ?
Scarf: thrifted, a gift from my boyfriend's mum
Belt: vintage, a gift from my mum
Bowtie: made it myself
Photos: my boyfriend, The Fish and me

I made a dress #9

Oh, the weather has been dreadful lately. I mean: no snow, no freezing streets, no real winter. We're not even below zero. And still, it's not sunny, not really warm and it's definitely not pretty. Now, me, I like pretty, I live on pretty. When it is un-pretty outside, I get sad and angry and everything seems wrong. I do honestly have a bad case of S.A.D. So to brak the vicious cycle of un-pretty, I've decided to make a dress that would be pretty and sunny and colourful. And here it is.

I chose the dress number 2 for the beautiful, vintage curtain fabric that I'd had for a year or so and knew I would need a simple pattern for, not to distort the large floral piece in the front and back. That simple trapeze dress was just what I was looking for and I was so happy to find it in a new addition to my vintage pattern stash. Alas, I had to fit the back with darts because of my scoliosis/kyphosis which causes the fabrics to wrinkle in an awkward way above my bum. So, sadly, the design in the back of the dress is hidden slightly. On the other hand, I'm happy with facings that I drafted by myself and bound with a bias tape! Also the hem is hand sewn with an invisible stitch. I decided against the white rectangular finish of the hem because I didn't want to hide any more of the fabric's design. I did sew the attatchment collar but I like a simple peter pan collar better with this dress.

The pattern came from a Polish fashion magazine from Summer 1969. It's nice to think that back then a lot of fashion magazines were including patterns for home use just because it was so hard to find ready-made garments in stores. My Mum and Granny keep telling me about those times after the war and before the independence when all the clothes they owned were sewn to measure by a tailor --not because they were posh or anything! It was simply cheaper that way. Oh, and btw., I'd recently acquired a bundle of said clothes from my Granny's wardrobe and I need to show them off to you soon.

Dress: made it myself 
Fabric: thrifted, vintage 
Pattern: Polish fashion magazine "Moda", Summer 1969 
Coat: Troll, old 
Scarf: a gift, thrifted 
Cardigan: Lidl 
Shoes: Pier One via Zalando
Photos: my friend Alina

2014 wrap up! Podsumowanie 2014 roku.

Everybody's doing this wrap up of the last year thing, so I thought I'd do the same, just for fun and to actually see what I've achieved in the past year. O, so here goes!

Wszyscy znajomi blogerzy podsumowują teraz ubiegły rok, więc pomyślałam, że zrobię to samo, żeby się przekonać, ile zrobiłam i co najbardziej mi się podobało. Przekojamy się!

In August I remembered that I since I'd tried it out a year prior, I've liked sewing. So, I sewed me a few things this year, too, and I'm unstoppable now! I'm getting better and better and even started sewing for other people. Yay! 

You can click on the photos to navigate to the right post.

W sierpniu przypomniałam sobie, że od kiedy rok wcześniej uszyłam swoją pierwszą sukienkę, polubiłam terkotanie maszyny i towarzyszące mu czynności. W tym roku uszyłam więc kolejne rzeczy i niektóre z nich pokazałam na blogu. Coraz lepiej mi to idzie i zaczęłam nawet szyć dla innych - to dla mnie duża rzecz!

Zdjęcia są klikalne i odwołują do odpowiednich notek.

Some of my favorite outfits last year were those pictured below. Again, the photos are clickable.

Mój własny styl
Kilka moich ulubionych zestawów z ubiegłego roku znajdziecie poniżej. Zdjęcia znowu klikalne.

I've made some new friends over the internet, coming from such many different places, just thanks to the fact that I'm writing this blog! I'm very happy about each and every connection. Those small tokens of time we take in our busy life just to comment on our blogs make me feel grateful. I really appreciate this. Some of the people that won me over this year and influenced me in many ways are lovely Ette from Parva Sed Apta, Katie from Coeurs de Foxes, Tina from La Dulsa Tina, Seamstress Żaneta from Krawcowa Żyrafko and the whole We Sew Retro community (this must be the blog I've spent most of my time on this year!). I may not always comment but know this: I'm carefully watchinc and reading and always marveling at what you create, ladies.

This blog is a small space for me in the internet community of personal style bloggers and retro sewists, and it makes me very happy that it's finding its way to people's hearts. You are very dear to me, my readers! This blog is written as much for me, as it is for you. So, I'd like to know what you would like to see more of on this blog. Outfits? Sewing posts? Tutorials? Personal stuff? I'd be glad to hear what you have to say so don't be shy!

Inni ludzie i ich wspaniałe blogi

Dzięki temu blogowi poznałam w tym roku sporo nowych osób, z którymi udało mi się nawiązać nić porozumienia. Bardzo mnie cieszy każda taka znajomość i jestem wdzięczna za każdą krótką chwilę, którą poświęcamy sobie wzajemnie w naszym pędzącym życiu, choćby po to, by napisać komentarz na blogu. Robi to na mnie naprawdę duże wrażenie, że ludzie z tak różnych miejsc na całym świecie potrafią się odnaleźć w gąszczu internetowych informacji i zostać ze sobą na dłużej. Wiele jest blogów, w których znajduję inspiracje, ale w tym roku najciekawsze i najprzyjemniejsze chwile spędziłam u Ette z Parva Sed Apta,  Katie z Coeurs de Foxes, Tiny z La Dulsa Tina, Żanety z Krawcowej Żyrafko, a także na We Sew Retro, które odwiedzałam w tym roku chyba najczęściej. Nie zawsze komentuję, ale wiedzcie, że odwiedzam Was, czytam i zachwycam się każdą kreacją.

Mój blog jest małym, cichym miejscem w blogosferze szafiarskiej i szyjącej, i bardzo mnie cieszy, że znajduje sobie drogę do ludzkich serc. Jesteście dla mnie bardzo ważni, moi czytelnicy! Nawet, jeśli tylko czytacie i nie komentujecie, to wiedzcie, że sprawia mi dużą przyjemność, że ktoś przychodzi do mnie, bo znalazł tu coś, co mu się podoba. Wychodząc Wam na przeciw chcę zapytać o to, co chcielibyście znaleźć na tym blogu. Więcej zestawów ubraniowych? Więcej szycia? Tutoriale? Wyimki z tego, co się u mnie dzieje? A może jeszcze coś innego? Dajcie znać, co Was ciekawi!