Reaping What I Saw

It’s that time of the year when you start to harvest what you planted.  Some of the produce is for your belly, but an equal amount is for your mind.  Even in my veggie garden, I like to plant marigolds, and pretty varieties of veggies so it’s nice to look at, too.  Even so with my flowers.  It can’t all be beautiful in the same way—where would you look?  A friend gave my a King Tut Papyrus this year, and it’s now taller than I am:

That’s not all that tall, but it’s something different to rest my eyes upon when I’m tired of the world.  The plant behind it is my 15 foot tall wild rose bush that is spectacular late spring with small white flowers.  The deer and birds really like the rose hips during the winter.

Another welcome sight was this poor little grocery store mini rose bush that I moved late last year:

It thanked me in the nicest way it could with a tiny perfect rose.  I think it will do just fine where I transplanted it.  Those mini roses are some of the toughest plants in my yard!

Another welcome sight, at the thrift store and not in my garden, is this poodle:

It’s one of those premiums that furriers gave customers when they bought a fur, or maybe stored their furs.  I’m not sure what women did with fur coats because no one in my family ever had one, and I certainly wouldn’t now.  But, hypocrite that I am, I did buy this mink poodle because it was so obviously in need of a home.  The furriers made all kinds of animal pins for your coats and stoles from scraps, but poodles were pretty common.  I probably will never wear this, but Fifi can have a home on my dresser.

I’m less sure why I bought this:

It sure isn’t the high quality the poodle is, but it amused me in a whole different way.  I thought the beetle was a toy, but no, there was a pin on the back.  I have quite a few pieces of insect jewelry, so it will find a happy home with the rest of my bugs.

This needlecraft book did not come home with either of us:

You know, sometimes it’s good to know when to say when.  This poor owl may never have been good, but I think it surely was better before they added all that overstitching to make the wings and eyelids(?).  If this is what you use to entice people to look at and buy your book, the rest of the stuff must be pretty bad.  It was, but we were merciful and only took a picture of the cover.

We have been swinging by Who Gives a Scrap. trying to support them as they close and bargain shop.  We actually have found some pretty good things, but sadly, there is still a lot of bad left.  This clown kit is pretty benign, for a clown, but what on earth would you do with it?

It’s bald as an egg so I suppose they wanted the crafter to add yarn hair.  But then what?  It’s wood, so that’s a big no on the doll front.  I guess you could use your jigsaw and cut it into pieces for a puzzle.  I think it might make a nice fire starter for a marshmallow roast.  Then problem solved and it becomes useful!

Okay, this made me laugh out loud:

Instead of making a basket out of cheap plastic beads, they made an Uncle Sam hat.  If it would have fit my Barbies, I probably would have bought it, but it was too big at four inches tall!  I’m not feeling patriotic enough to use if for a Fourth of July decoration, so I left it for someone more creative than me.  It was gone, so someone had a use for it.

This is a postcard from Spain:

It was entirely too fabulous to ignore.  That’s real red and gold lace for her skirts, and they used white thread for her shirt and lace for the mantilla.  I’m not sure how you could ever mail it as a postcard; I’m pretty sure all the decoration would be gone by the time it reached home.  I have to say that her partner behind her is pretty fantastico, too.  He probably didn’t do much sitting in those pants!

This last little thing made me smile and miss my grandmother:

Really, my mother-in-law, too.  They just couldn’t waste that last little bit of thread and wound it around spools to never be used because there just wasn’t enough of it to even sew on a couple of buttons.  The Great Depression was never really over for them.

Well, that’s it for the regular post.  Kathy is going to do a post about her flower frog collection next week, which should be lots of fun.  Send a good wish her way as she is having her eye surgery tomorrow morning.

Next up is this week’s entry of my 5oo-part series:

The week it’s the Fabulous Fifties!  Such a fun decade for fashion as the time for being serious with the war effort was over, and America was feeling its oats.  Great Britain had finally begun to stop rationing, and the author dubs the chapter on the fifties, “Riding the Waves of Affluence”.

I love this picture of Princess Grace for a number of reasons:

First and foremost, she is wearing a poodle pin, which just confirms my good taste in collecting them! 😉  I also love that her daughter, Caroline, has a little purse, hat, and gloves, too.  I think that Grace’s handbag looks stylish and also practical for traveling.  She made looking good seem easy.

In the early ’50s, women had many more options for purses than during the deprived 1940s.  Envelopes or porchettes were back, as well as something fairly similar called a clutch.  Daytime bags were more practical and often leather, with women carrying different jewelry and makeup for evening wear right out of the office.  The New Look continued to be popular with its feminine profile and yards of fabric.  Women often wore suits to the office, with a skimpier blouse underneath for evening wear, sans jacket.  It seemed, at least until the middle of the decade. that women matched purses and shoes, while other accessories went their own colorful ways.

Leathers could be dyed more extravagant colors such a bright pink, willow green, and a murky yellow.  Exotic leather was popular, along with the traditional alligator/crocodile/reptile leathers.  They were dying these reptile hides different colors, too.

The purse on the top of the page is attached to the New Look paragraph:

And it is fabulous and big enough to be handy.  You can see the metal purses at the bottom of the pages with their metal chain handles.  Beaded bags with or without sequins were also popular for evening wear, as was velvet with beads or braid decoration (right side of page):

Plastic was very popular for day and evening wear.  They had a pearlized plastic that was very fancy with different finishes and rhinestones or other enhancements.  The author talks about fur bags that were carried without a fur stole or coat.  I suppose it would pair well with the little black cocktail dress and high heels that were de rigueur for cocktail hours.

There was less formality in dress and accessories starting in the mid 195os:

This page is just a small sample of purse types.  Baskets and drawstring bags were popular for daytime.  Plastic was extremely popular as the makers grew more sophisticated with colors and finishes.  People still got dressed up for an evening of dancing, theater, etc., but formality seemed to be on the wane, and by the end of the decade, Mary Qant had opened her first shop heralding all the fashion extremes of the 1960s.

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