Friday, June 11, 2010

McCall 8104 - Artist's Smock

1934 or a little later. 

Outside of a few novelty apron patterns which start to show up in the '30s and '40s, this is the earliest "unisex" pattern I've ever seen. (The term "unisex" seems to have been coined, or at least popularized, in the 1960's.)

With this pattern we've come a long, long way from our slightly frou-frou artist of the early 1900's.  I'd be much more inclined to call this a lab or shop coat.  The 1928 book Tailored Garments states that
The making of garments for men...also offers excellent possibilities for the woman who wishes to specialize.  For example, a good business may be build up by making...coats for barbers, surgeons, etc...
The instructions are extremely brief, even for this era.

The pattern has been very carefully cut out and used.


Freyalyn said...

I went to a somewhat oldfashioned girls' school in Yorkshire in the 70-80s. Our Art/Science coat was just like this, in royal blue cotton twill.

Diane Shiffer said...

It almost looks like a coat, doesn't it? I must say, I prefer the frou frou look of the earlier smocks. I have a pattern for an artists' smock from the 1960's. It's one of the views for what has to be one of the dowdiest garments ever created.. sort of a housedress/housecoat/smock combo. And I generally adore such garments!

I pictured it here:
if you'd care to see it☺

Little Black Car said...

I love that!

I work for a medical archive, and I wish we had more pictures of the interiors of our old hospitals. I wonder if the lab coats looked like that.