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July 5, 2011

Sewing In The Swinging 60’s

From the Eaton’s Spring/Summer 1965 Catalogue

By Andrea (Sew What Fabrics)

Eaton’s was a Canadian department store in operation from 1869 until 1999, who’s catalogues were found in the homes of most Canadians. Eaton’s prided itself on having quality, up-to-date products, and the offerings for the home seamstress were no exception!


I would give my left arm to find a dressform like the one shown in #32. You put on the wire mesh shell like a garment, and it molded to you! How easy would that be to get the perfect fit? Vintage dressforms to tend to be more adjustable than today’s forms, but I think this type would really have been the best of all. I also find it interesting that you can still buy basically the same sewing basket today as shown in #1 – some things don’t change much, it seems.


I am madly in love with the little dog applique sew-ons at shown in #21. You can still buy the little rosebud cluster appliques (#23) today, as well as the daisy guipure trim (#29). The gimp cord (#42) is also something that has not changed much, either. Using trims like these can really give an extra mid-century touch to your sewing projects, and they are fairly easy to find new.


S-T-R-E-T-C-H! Stretch fabrics were still fairly new on the scene, and were definitely adding a lot of comfort to the clothing styles of the day. Check out the prints! I like the paisley (#47) and the dots (#07).


Cottons were definitely super popular, lots of garment-weight cotton prints were available. Seersucker is definitely a classic that is still available today, made up with the right pattern you can definitely get a super vintage look. I am loving the red and white sailboat print in the terry (#08) – that would make such a cute beach cover-up!


More cotton prints! I am totally and completely in love with the cowboy print (#60). There have been numerous reproduction cowboy prints put out by companies such as Moda and Alexander Henry in the past few years, so finding something similar is definitely doable. I am also loving print #43, as it looks like the girls in the print are crafting! Gingham is another classic that is readily available today, and will easily have a vintage look.
There you have it, readers! Hopefully this will give you all some ideas for fabric choices for your sewing and crafting projects. Which prints would you love to find reproductions (or originals) of?

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3 Responses to Sewing In The Swinging 60’s

  1. RetroRuth Reply

    July 5, 2011 at 9:00 am

    These are awesome, Andrea!!! I totally want the children’s cotton prints. All of them, I can’t decide on just one! Oh, and the pink sea serpent and red sailboat terry cloth. Love!

  2. Lorie B. Reply

    July 5, 2011 at 11:43 am

    Mentioning the cowboy print..I was reminded that a lady from our chruch gave my youngest an adorable shirt with little bear cowboys and indians on a dark green background. It is REALLY sweet. yet, do you see things like that now? In this world or over the top political correctness, when was the last time you saw cowboy and indian anything??? Sad…really sad.

  3. Andrea Reply

    July 5, 2011 at 3:24 pm

    Ruth – yes, the sea serpent! I forgot to mention that one, too, but that one is so adorable as well!

    Lorie – that shirt sounds absolutely adorable! You are right that you definitely don’t see prints like that nowadays, for sure.

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