So, I went and got myself on pinterest and have uploaded my entire 1940 McCall pattern collection (except for a handful of patterns for which I need to take better pictures in daylight). Go have a look and let me know if you are on pinterest and I'll follow you. I'm still getting the hang of it but I'm liking how easy it is to organize pictures. The next step is to get these all up on the Vintage Pattern Wiki and also on flickr.
Many of you were asking about The 1940 McCall Project, which patterns are included and how you can help out. Here's some more details....
The Included Patterns
The patterns included are those that have a copyright date of 1940 (unlike the Blueprints of Fashion books which list the 1940 dates according to the patterns featured in the McCall Magazines--i.e. the January 1940 McCall's Magazine lists all 1939 patterns, etc.). McCall patterns are amazing in that they published the copyright date right on the pattern during this time period. The date is usually located on the pattern cover flap:
I've narrowed down that the year 1940 starts with either McCall 3552 or McCall 3553. I've narrowed this down because McCall 3551 is a slip pattern featured on the Vintage Pattern Wiki which is dated 1939 and I have McCall 3554 which is a button-down blouse pattern dated 1940. If any of you have either of these patterns, definitely let me know what if they are 1939 or 1940! As a side note, all of the patterns during 1940 will say "McCall" rather than "McCall's". The name wasn't changed to "McCall's" until the early 1950s. It's a good way to know if you've got a pre-1950s pattern if it says 'McCall' on the cover.
This is McCall 3553. Is it the first pattern of 1940??
As for the end of 1940, that's a bit more difficult as I have less resource material to draw upon but it's somewhere between McCall 4005 and 4009.
Which means there are between 452 to 457 main patterns for the year 1940 alone. Yee-haw! Told you this challenge will take me a decade or two (or more)! Those aren't the only patterns from 1940. There are a whole series of transfer patterns which have an entirely different numbering system. I know for sure that the year 1940 starts with McCall 742, which is this adorable little boy's Pinnocio costume:
The year ends with either McCall 829, 830 or 831. This adds up to an additional 87 to 89 patterns, bringing the grand total of 1940 McCall patterns to somewhere between 539 to 546 patterns!
So, how many patterns do I have now? According to my last count, I have 117 or approximately 25% of the main patterns and 26 or 30% of the transfer patterns. Phew! Crazy! I just love Clio's comment on the previous post:
OMG you have NO idea how excited I am for your 1940 project! I feel like the sewing blogosphere has collectively decided that 2013 is a back to basics sort of year. Not that there's anything wrong with basics; there isn't. It's just incredibly inspiring to see a big hairy audacious goal with a real point of view and some fashion risk taking involved! YAY!YAY indeed! I'm so excited too!
How You Can Help
I've had several people ask how they can help. There's several ways:
- If you see a 1940 McCall pattern for sale, let me know! Email me at: myhappysewingplace[at]googlemail.com. I've been pretty good at tracking ebay and etsy but I always miss things! I've got my eye on a few things at the moment but have to wait until my budget catches up..lol. Likewise, if your a pattern seller let me know if you have any upcoming 1940 McCall patterns.
- Do you have a 1940 pattern in your stash? Wanna swap patterns? I've got some really great 30s, 40s and 50s patterns and am happy to swap patterns (plus you can make a copy of the 1940 pattern before the swap--so you get the best of both worlds!)
- I also take presents. hahahaha. If you find a 1940 pattern in your home and don't feel you can give it the love it needs, don't hesitate to send it my way! Just email me.
- I'm also interested in links, photos of any fashion or pattern related item from the year 1940! I hope to do a bit more delving into the year including looking at other pattern companies--so feel free to email me anything you think I might find interesting.
- Lastly, I'm hoping to find some people who have themselves or whose family members worked at McCall's during this time period! Send me your family stories!
Yippeee...can't tell you how excited I am to do this!