I have to admit, I completely and utterly break the "don't judge a book by it's cover" rule. If I see a book with an eye candy cover, I'll feel so tempted to buy it. I'm most guilty of this in the craft area of any book section whether it's a bookstore or thrift store. When I opened up the parcel from Amy Barickman and lifted out the book Vintage Notions I just held it reverently in my hands for a few moments. It was beautiful and absolutely perfect. When I opened up the first few pages I had to sit down.....and read page after page of this incredible book. I did judge this book by the cover and it exceeded my expectations.
Amy Barickman's Vintage Notions features:
- Inspirational essays and projects for each month of the year
- Seasonal Recipes and decorating ideas
- Four storage pockets - one for each season
- Twelve Magic Patterns - easy-to-make, chic sewing projects
Yet Vintage Notions is more than this little summary above. It's heart and soul behind the all the things that many of us do that might seem mundane in our lives. How often do we cook a meal wanting to rush through the process of it in order to just sit down and eat. Or even worse, grabing a meal in the deli section of the grocery store to-go. Or we rush through a craft to get it completed rather than take our time for the sake of simply crafting. I have been guilty of this myself. Some days I do long for a year around life that is similar to those summer months where life slows down and I can really take my time in the kitchen with the children or work on a craft project in the warm sun while drinking a cold glass of freshly made lemonade. This book is a reminder of that life that I crave.
The book was inspired by Mary Brooks Picken, a 1920's entrepreneur who became an international authority on dressmaking and fashion. Amy says "I conceived of this book, Vintage Notions, to rescue Mary Brooks Picken from obscurity and to reintroduce the inspirational essays, clever sewing patters, cooking basics and beautiful illustrations from the Institutes's (The Women's Institute of Domestic Arts and Sciences) newsletters with a fresh and modern voice."
The book is cleverly divided into seasons. Within each season there are sections such as Inspiration, Good Looks, Sewing, Cookery, Fashion and a Magic Pattern. The Slip-Over Apron - Magic Pattern is at the top of my to-make-list.
January begins with an inspirational essay by Gustave L. Weinss written in January of 1920. I adore where he writes, "So, as the New Year advances, let us all try to recognize and utilize the wonderful possibilities of getting a new start."
Despite the fact that this was written 91 years ago, these are words that many of us will resonate with. We all feel blessed with a new beginning at the start of every new year. There are so many lovely quotes throughout the book that it will truly warm your heart.
If you are a collector or a fan of vintage linens, the photos in this book will not disappoint. This photo above was my favorite piece. You'll find borders and snippets of vintage linens on practically every page.
I have a lemon tree brimming with lemons at the moment and have added "making lemon syrup" to my to-do-list. Yes my lists are filling after looking through the chapters of Vintage Notions. When life gets busy the thing I most often miss is spending time in the kitchen.
Our culture is doing a miraculous thing where we are turning to once forgotten arts such as preserving food, homesteading and crafting. Everything feels energized and reading the historic words in Vintage Notions really makes me want to be a part of this movement. I want to go back to the land, cook in the kitchen and craft in the sewing room.
You can purchase your own copy through Amy's site Indigo Junction.
Amy has kindly given me a copy of Vintage Notions to giveaway. Simply leave a comment and I'll draw a name next Friday. I'd love to hear a lost art that you have been longing to try.
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