Once upon a time, most clothes were sewn at home. Now and ever after, home-sewing patterns will provide the best blueprint to a time when suddenly everyone could dress like the models in magazines. The most popular 1940s styles-from couture to everyday workclothes, ensembles, sportswear, lingerie, and evening dresses, plus toys, needlework and gifts-are presented here in 550 color photographs of pattern envelopes from companies like Advance, Butterick, Hollywood, McCall, Simplicity, Vogue, and others. For the home seamstress, this will be a trip back in time. For artists, costume designers, and collectors it's an invaluable guide. The text outlines the beginnings of the huge pattern industry, its evolution and impact on fashion. A wide array of pattern-related items is presented including publications and advertising, display dolls, tools, and various forms of packaging. The pattern envelope illustrations are wonderful period drawings of '40s fashions. A refreshing approach and an important first book on this growing field of interest.