Now what? Life in rural Ariege

Burblings about adjusting to life in the deep south west of France or "la France profonde" as they call it here and the challenges of restoring a ramshackle collection of tumbledown buildings. I mainly write about local festivals, events and celebrations and, most of all, the weekly ritual of combing vide greniers and brocantes for pre-loved vintage treasures.

7 July 2013

Woman Week-End

I'm such a magpie. How could I resist rifling through the tottering pile of books that were placed on the next door neighbour's front wall this morning? I picked up and replaced books on preserve making, knitting and fishing but could not put down the copy of the “Woman Week-End Book”. This little gem, published in 1949 by Oldman Press, was the first book of the women's lifestyle magazine, Woman.

As well as popular short stories and “many interesting and instructive hints on Beauty, Housewifery and Personal Problems, Cookery and Knitting” it has pages of “useful things to make”. It's a real treasure trove of post-war thrifty ideas and jam-packed (please excuse the preserve pun) with vintage crafting and sewing ideas.

How about this jewellery set made from ribbon and curtain rings?

I don't think I'd have a go at making a rug with a bodkin needle and some very simple double cross-stitch. But maybe a modern knit-wit would make up this “two-piece swim suit of trunks and brassiere, dimond trimmed, for grown-up belles”

And I just love the practical tips for young wives and mothers. How about this article advising you how to achieve a “correct line-up on laundry day”!

But most of all those wonderful brightly colored recipe pages with tasty treats from days gone by. This page shows rabbit casserole, grilled cod steaks and spaghetti with sausage balls... The height of sophistication in 1949 and still to be found in most restaurants in deepest Ariege, SW France!