"The Illustrated Hassle-Free Make Your Own Clothes Book"

This is another classic tome of my mothers, found on eBay after many years of fruitless searching. It's basically a Dummy's Guide to Sewing Hippie Clothes and the little drawings are so wonderful. I love how crooked they are, even I can draw like that!

Their amazingly cute kids clothes ideas. A fringed vest is pretty adorable on a kid, and only on a kid, however.

These two women are pretty neat ladies. They dedicated the book to their swamiji (they must have lived on a commune!) and they are always referring to their husbands as "their old men". My old man this, my old man that, so endearing.

They also dole out some funny hippie wisdom such as "Men should be able to get over their uptightness about making clothes, about doing all kinds of things they have been brainwashed into relegating to women." Ha.

and regarding tailored clothes..

"We don't use darts because we don't use bras- they give your clothes a sort of funny shape.....except the no-bra kind which are better than most." Sounds like my family alright.

Also, how to make a dress with a tee shirt for a pattern. The directions are pretty loosey goosey and I totally ate them up in middle school. I ruined countless pairs of jeans by adding a triangle of fabric at the hem to make them bell bottoms, as I learned in this book.

These days I've moved on to making these little pouches out of leather to keep my camera in.

Thanks, mom, for finding another good one!


  1. Read this...


    Flower Children. It reminds me a bit of us, a bit of the beauty and wonder, a bit of the confusion, and all around joy that our parents had a bit of solid ground under there feet even if there heads were delightfully in the clouds.

    Oh, and by the way, I have a fringe vest just like that!!! and I look darn cute in it if I do say so myself. I guess I am just a kid at heart.
    Cute? yes.
    Ridiculous? decidedly so!

  2. Love the whimsical drawing of the two natural nymphs!

    The simple lines of the clothing "patterns" makes me think that anyone could sew. Perhaps even me!

    Thanks for the fun and funky inspiration.

  3. hay "anonymous" I'm pretty sure I know who you are, and I'm pretty sure you sewed up some amazing flights of fancy in your time... hand painted fabric books, a cover for a card table that turned it into a cottage playhouse, curtains Christmas ornaments,children's theatre costumes and all of little miss Amy's baby bedding, so don't pretend like you don't know your way around a sewing machine!

  4. Duhhhhh...

    I don't remember how to thread my ancient machine without the help of an elfin daughter who might be coming home for Christmas!!


  5. I made lots of really groovy clothes for my little daughter Jessica using this book back in the seventies and she looked lovely. I could get a dress, a pair of knickers and a little headscarf from just one yard of material. Happy Days !!

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