How the West was Worn!

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The “Singing Cowboy” Gene Autry in a stunning embroidered Western shirt.

No doubt about it, the vintage inspired crowd has always had a love for the great American Cowboy.  Singing cowboys, like Roy Rogers and Gene Autry were favorites both on the Big screen as well as the radio. Tom Mix, the western star from the 1920s and 1930s was so intertwined with western lore that he was even a Pallbearer at Wyatt Earp’s funeral.

The Western Swing greats like Bob Wills and His Texas Cowboys,  Spade Cooley and His Orchestra, The Tune Wranglers and so many more also did much to popularize western wear.  This style of music was the roots of what was to follow. Rockabilly and Rock & Roll are the children of this fusion between jazz and western music.

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Tom Mix’s clothing was made by Miller , which is where Papa Jack Weil started. Jack Weil later started his own company Rockmount Ranchwear and in 1946 invented the now iconic western pearl snap buttons.

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Most famous for her Peek-a-boo hairstyle, and glamourous evening gowns, Veronica Lake was also fond of western wear.

Most famous for her Peek-a-boo hairstyle, and glamorous evening gowns, Veronica Lake was also fond of western wear.

Although uber stylish, there was always function involved with western wear. The slim fit was designed to avoid snagging clothing on brush and the snap buttons allowed for easy break away to prevent being hung up as well. Even the cowboy boot had a functionality in its design. Should your foot get caught in a stirrup after being thrown by your horse, one only needed to point the toe to slip out of your boot and escape the rather unpleasant predicament.

Today, you can still get old school style and quality as Rockmount Ranchwear is not only still in business and thriving, they are still producing some of the exact same shirts they did in the 1940’s and 1950’s with the same kind of attention to detail and quality. Rockmount Ranchwear

Even the ever dapper Cary Grant wore Rockmount Ranchwear!

Even the ever dapper Cary Grant wore Rockmount Ranchwear!

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Rockmount Ranchwear is still made today, and available at Bear Flag Republic

Rockmount Ranchwear is still made today, and available at Bear Flag Republic

1950's Atomic Rocket Click image to get yours!

1950’s Atomic Rocket Click image to get yours!

Above all…The Right Hat!

Are you ready to don your Easter bonnet? A hat choice is a very personal thing. Hats were designed to frame the face rather then overwhelm it so choosing the right millinery style for your face structure is just as important as matching it to the rest of your outfit.  In the 1920s through the early 1930s the Cloche hat was all the rage. This fitted hat was shaped like a bell hence the name “cloche” (French for bell). By the late 1930s and through the 1940s hats became increasingly creative and often not resembling a hat at all. The rule of thumb in the 40s was the younger you were the less your hat looked like a hat.  The 1950s was the pinnacle of the millinery fashion love affair. Here are some early styles examples and some detailed descriptions from the 1953 Millinery Trade magazine  HATS.

To find your ideal Easter Bonnet Click here: Bear Flag Republic Vintage

A Cloche hat advertisement from the early 1930s

A Cloche hat advertisement from the early 1930s

Irene Dunne and Cary Grant in the 1937 hit movie The Awful Truth. She wears a magnificent winged hat.

Irene Dunne and Cary Grant in the 1937 hit movie The Awful Truth. She wears a magnificent winged hat.

Lucy in 1941, later her and Ethel would have to do perpetual splainin'  or buying too many hats!

Lucy in 1941, later her and Ethel would have to do perpetual splainin’ for buying too many hats!

From top to bottom Hattie Carnegie: Wide sided pill box in white Shantung with a coffee-tinted eye veil. Don Marshall: Youthful Princess Anne Cap. Emme: Tiny Black velvet beret poised at the brow line. Beatrice-Martin: Rows of primrose picot ribbon on this shell-bonnet of white straw.

From top to bottom
Hattie Carnegie: Wide sided pill box in white Shantung with a coffee-tinted eye veil. Don Marshall: Youthful Princess Anne Cap. Emme: Tiny Black velvet beret poised at the brow line. Beatrice-Martin: Rows of primrose picot ribbon on this shell-bonnet of white straw.

1. Shell and cabochon motif cartwheel sailor. 2. Crimson Lilac Satin and Straw profile hat. 3. Shantung straw profile hat. 4. Wide sided portrait hat. 5. Giant sailor with shallow crown.  6. Heart shaped beret. 7. Straw bouclé with three dimension trim. 8. Oval Plateau hat.

1. Shell and cabochon motif cartwheel sailor.
2. Crimson Lilac Satin and Straw profile hat.
3. Shantung straw profile hat.
4. Wide sided portrait hat.
5. Giant sailor with shallow crown.
6. Heart shaped beret.
7. Straw bouclé with three dimension trim.
8. Oval Plateau hat.

A Very Wholesome Vintage Meal Your choice 1930s or 1940s Style!

We love to cook from vintage cookbooks, and I love the home cooked wholesomeness of a great meat loaf. It’s a filling meal and economical too. Here are two of our favorite meatloaf recipes. One from a book we picked up on Catalina Island printed in 1930; Meals Tested,Tasted and Approved and another from the Household Searchlight Recipe Book printed in 1940. The only changes we make are on the oven temperature since modern ovens cook more efficiently we cook 1 pound at 325 degrees F. for 45 to 50 minutes, and 1 1/2 pounds or more same temperature for an hour. Bon Appétit.

1930s Meals, Tested, Tasted and Approved recipe: Stuffed Meat Loaf

1 1/2 pounds beef, ground 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 egg well beaten 1 cupful soft bread crumbs
1/2 cupful milk 1/2 teaspoon sage
1 1/2 teaspoon salt 1 tablespoon grated onion
1/4 teaspoon pepper 4 tablespoonfuls melted fat

Combine meat, beaten egg, milk, 1 tsp. Salt, 1/8 tsp. Pepper, and Worcestershire sauce. Line the bottom and sides of a loaf pan with this mixture: Make a stuffing by combining bread crumbs, 1/2 tsp.salt, the sage, 1/8 tsp. Pepper, grated onion and melted fat. Fill center of pan with this mixture. Cover top with more of the meat mixture. Cook in a hot oven 400 degrees F. For 45 mins. Serve with Tomato or Mushroom sauce. Serves 6

1940s Household Searchlight Recipe : Meat Loaf

1 pound pounds beef, ground 1/4 Teaspoon Pepper
2 Tablespoons melted butter 1 cup coarsely broken crackers
1 egg, slightly beaten 1 cup milk
2 Tablespoons Chopped onions 1 Teaspoon salt
2 slices Bacon

Combine all ingredients except bacon. Form in loaf Lay slices of bacon across top. Bake in moderate oven 375 degrees F. For 2 hours, If desired, substitute 1/2 cup uncooked oat cereal for 1/2 cup crackers crumbs. Serve with Tomato sauce

I know, I know, we are using one of those as seen on TV pans. We love vintage meals, not vintage grease and clean up!

I know, I know, we are using one of those as seen on TV pans. We love vintage meals, not vintage grease and clean up!

You can add a Mushroom gravy or Tomato sauce, but they have fantastic flavor without having to smother it with something else.

You can add a Mushroom gravy or Tomato sauce, but they have fantastic flavor without having to smother it with something else.

Vintage cook books can be found anywhere, Thrift stores and antique stores..and usually pretty cheap.

Vintage cook books can be found anywhere, Thrift stores and antique stores..and usually pretty cheap.