How to Draw Vintage Fashion and Create Your Own Styles: For Readers Ages Eleven and Up


How to Draw Vintage Fashion

•        Targeted Audience: Middle & High School (Ages 11+)
•        Genre: Non-Fiction Picture Book
•        Author: Celia Joicey & Dennis Nothdruft
•        Publisher: Thames & Hudson
•        Publication Date: November 11, 2014
•        Binding: Quality Paperback
•        Dimensions: 9″ x 12″
•        Printing: Full Color
•        Length: 96 Pages
•        Retail: $19.95
•        ISBN: 978-0500650370


© Copyright – Image courtesy of Thames & Hudson

Last year I reviewed How to Draw Like a Fashion Designer, an excellent title written by Celia Joicey and Dennis Northdruft, two authors/designers from the Fashion and Textile Museum of London. Now they have published a second volume for designers as young as age eleven, entitled How to Draw Vintage Fashion.

Vintage Fashion Always in Style

article-1258314-08219D7A000005DC-211_634x654My favorite part of watching old movies is seeing the fashions and hairstyles from earlier times. I’ve always said that if I were rich and/or famous I’d have a designer dress me in vintage fashions similar to those that adorned Grace Kelly during the 1950s.  I am particularly fond of this spectacular gown costumier Edith Head designed for Kelly in Rear Window, my favorite movie of all time.

© Copyright-Image of Grace Kelly from the Everett Collection

Anyone who is interested in clothing design can’t help but study vintage fashions; the top designers of today look to these for inspiration for modern garments. In How to Draw Vintage Fashion, children as young as age eleven are wonderfully presented with an overview of this classic era in fashion history.


© Copyright -Image courtesy of Thames & Hudson

“I think the 1960s was the period that really shaped me and my love of fashion. To me that decade always seems like a time of ultimate optimism.”

– Designer, Anna Sui

From 1920s Flappers to 1980s Funk

This substantial book is divided into three sections. Renowned designer Anna Sui sets the stage by introducing readers to the book and sharing some insight into the vintage styles that have inspired her over the years. Section One includes an overview of what’s inside the book. There’s a fashion timeline with lovely illustrations and descriptions of key looks, top designers of that era, textiles, accessories and famous icons who donned those fashions. There are pages with close-ups of trendsetting designers, from Jean Patou, designer of the flapper dress to Marc Jacobs, one of the top designers today, who uses vintage fashions to create new looks and trends. In Section Two you’ll get all the tools and materials you need to get started drawing. There’s an overview of prints and fabrics, an intro on how to make croquis drawings of the body in different poses, vintage hairstyles, shoes and bags and all the most celebrated fashions spanning seven decades from the 20s to the 80s. Section Three is all about helping you find the resources you need to find and develop ideas and put them all together. There’s a fashion glossary and an index too.


© Copyright – Image courtesy of Thames & Hudson

Why You’ll Love This Book

The lessons in How to Draw Vintage Fashion are based upon the actual workshops offered at the Fashion and Textile Museum in London. I love the fact that the authors give children as young as eleven the professional tools they need to get started as a designer and treat young readers with the respect of celebrated designers. The book is well organized and is easy to read, and the illustrations and photos guide and inspire readers to create their own original designs based on vintage styles. Fashion design is such an exciting and important part of who we are and how we live. We must nurture the individuality in children to inspire them to create. The world will always need designers and innovators and How to Draw Vintage Fashion lays a solid foundation for our future designers to get inspired and get started doing something extraordinary.


© Copyright – Image courtesy of Thames & Hudson

About the Authors

Celia JoiceyCelia Joicey received her art education from the Royal College of Art. She was a lecturer in art and design history and worked for the Victoria and Albert Museum. She is currently the Head of the Fashion and Textile Museum in London.

dennispicDennis Nothdruft has a BFA from Eastern New Mexico University and has worked as a freelance designer and design instructor. He is the Curator of the Fashion and Textile Museum in London where he leads a series of drawing classes for young people.

Further Learning

  1. Visit the Fashion and Textile Museum of London website.
  2. Take your child to a vintage clothing store.
  3. Watch movies from the vintage clothing eras.
  4. Check out fashion design careers on the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
  5. Learn about the top fashion design schools.
  6. Start researching the supplies fashion designers use.

Be sure to buy the first book in this series too for a complete set:

How-to-Draw-like-a-DesignerHow to Draw Like a Fashion Designer




Make a Thanksgiving Cornucopia Welcome Sign for your Front Window


 Thanksgiving Cornucopia Welcome Sign for Your Front Window

Supplies You’ll Need to Make a Cornucopia Welcome Sign

  • 2 paper grocery bags
  • Cardboard stock or colored paper in reds, oranges, yellows, greens, brown and purple.
  • Scissors
  • Tape
  • Glue
  • Black Sharpe or other marker

Cut open your paper grocery bags and tape them together to form one large sheet. Draw out the shape of a simple cornucopia. You can find clipart on line to help you out. My finished cornucopia (minus the fruits and veggies) is 28 inches wide and 16 inches long at the opening. Cut a circle out of brown paper to highlight the opening of the cornucopia and glue it down. Cut out shapes of apples, pumpkins, corn, grapes, gourds, pears and any other fruits or vegetables you wish. Again, use clipart for inspiration. Also add sunflowers with brown centers. Glue it all together and create more detail with a black marker. Cut 5.5 inch tall by 4.25 inches wide  letters out of card stock or construction paper to spell out “Happy Thanksgiving” or “Give Thanks.” You can cut 4 letters  out of one piece of paper. This project is a a great way to use up scraps of paper you have laying around the house!



Close up of cornucopia

Make Pilgrims Centerpiece for Thanksgiving from Paper Bags

 Paper Bag Pilgrims Centerpiece

This project is so much fun and so easy to do! I used mini black paper bags I found in the craft store. These would look great on a buffet table too or you can use them for decorations anywhere in your home. Use my directions for guidance, but feel free to make changes. Looking at images of pilgrims on line will give you many ideas.


Supplies You’ll Need for Paper Pilgrims Centerpiece

  • 2 mini paper bags (I used black bags I found at Michael’s Arts and Crafts 6.75 inches long by 3.5 inches wide. You can use any color you wish or even larger regular paper lunch bags and paint them black.) Even smaller bags are available at the craft store, so you can use those to make pilgrim place cards.
  • Scrap paper or newspaper for stuffing the bags
  • Construction paper or colored paper in white, black, pink and two shades of brown.
  • Two different colors of yarn for hair
  • 2 googly eyes in the color of your choice for each pilgrim (I used green and blue)
  • Scissors
  • Stapler
  • Tacky Craft Glue
  • Red Marker


Cut the following pieces. You do not need stencils, as you can just eye ball these:

Man Pilgrim

  • 2 arms for man from black paper – 4.5 inches long by 1.25 inches at the widest part at top tapering to .5 inch at wrist (double paper over to cut once and get 2 even sides)
  • 2 black shoes 1 inch long by .5 inches wide
  • Cut black Pilgrim hat 2 inches tall with hat rim 3 inches wide by .5 inches tall
  • Cut a thin strip of white paper for band around hat
  • Cut 2 collar sides from white paper 2 inches long by 1.25 inches wide (double paper over to cut once and get 2 even sides)
  • Cut oval head from pink paper 1.75 inches long and 1.5 inches wide
  • Cut small hands (like mittens) from pink paper 1 inch long by .75 inches at the widest part. (double paper over to cut once and get 2 even sides)
  • Cut belt from dark brown paper 8.5 inches long by .5 inches.
  • Make belt buckle from lighter brown paper. Cut .75 inch wide by .5 inch long square. Fold in half and make a square cut out in center for opening

Woman Pilgrim

  • 2 arms for man from black paper – 4.5 inches long by 1 inches at the widest part at top tapering to .5 inch at wrist (double paper over to cut once and get 2 even sides)
  • 2 black shoes .75 inches long by .5 inches wide
  • Cut black Pilgrim hat 2.5 inches at widest brim part by 1.5 inches tall. Top of hat is 1.37 inches wide
  • Cut a thin strip of white paper for band around hat
  • Cut apron from white paper 5 inches long. Very top is 2.75 inches and bottom of skirt is 2.75 inches
  • Cut oval head from pink paper 1.75 inches long and 1.5 inches wide
  • Cut small hands (like mittens) from pink paper .75 inches long by .75 inches at the widest part. (double paper over to cut once and get 2 even sides)
  • Cut small belt from black paper to fit waist size


Before you stuff the bag, glue down the man’s collar and the woman’s apron.


Stuff the bags loosely with 2 pieces of crumpled paper each or part of a piece of newspaper. Do not over stuff or it will not close at the top.


Staple the bags together at the top far corners. Do not staple in the middle.


Now start gluing all the pieces together. First glue the belt on the man, wrapping around the sides and small section of the back. Then glue on belt buckle. Then glue arms on both man and woman, followed by hands. Glue eyes on the heads and then put small dab of glue at bottom of heads and insert them in between the top of the bags Glue the bands around the hats before gluing hats at the top of the heads. Put the feet on last with small dab of glue. Add a smile on the faces with marker.



Side view. Cut yarn and glue on for hair, I tied 6 strands of yarn together in the center with yarn for the woman’s hair and just glued short pieces down for the man’s hair.


What a darling centerpiece for your Thanksgiving table! And what a fun craft to do with your kids! If you store them carefully and do not squish them, you can use them next year too.

Make Thanksgiving Turkey Place Cards from Toilet Paper Rolls

Thanksgiving Turkey Place Cards

This is a fun and easy craft you can do with your children, and it will make your Thanksgiving table look fantastic. Use your imagination. You don’t have to make yours exactly the same way I made mine.


Supplies You’ll Need for Turkey Place Cards

  • Toilet paper cardboard roll cut equally in half through the middle. (every roll makes 2 turkeys)
  • White paper to make stencils
  • Cardboard paper in red, orange and brown
  • Three medium sized feathers and one small feather for the head in the colors of your choice for each place card
  • 2 googly eyes in the color of your choice for each turkey
  • Scissors
  • Razor Blade (Only for parents to use!!!)
  • Tacky Craft Glue


Draw a turkey head like this one 2.5 inches long and 2 inches wide or use some clipart to get ideas. This will be the stencil you will use for each of your place cards.


Place your red cardboard stock behind your stencil and cut out your red head. You will repeat this for every place card you make, and you can get many heads out of one sheet of card stock, because each head is small.


Measure the height of your toilet paper roll (mine was exactly 2 inches but they vary in length) and cut out a piece of brown card stock that will wrap around it with 1.5 inches of overlap.



Glue the brown strip around the roll, and use a paper clip to secure it while it dries. Be sure to use tacky glue, because it holds much better than basic white glue.


Starting .5 inches from the top of the roll, but on the side opposite of the seem, parents (not safe for kids!) should cut with a razor blade a small slit long enough for the neck of the turkey. Insert the next about a quarter of an inch and secure with glue from the inside of the roll. Glue the googly eyes on either side of the head. I used yellow.


Draw some funky feet for your feet stencil 1.25 inches long by 1 inch wide (feet area) and cut them out on your orange cardboard stock. You’ll need 2 for each place card.


Glue three feathers of your choice in a fan format to the inside of the back of the turkey. Glue a smaller feather on one side of the head. You can buy feathers by the bag here in fall colors. If you wish, you can also cut simple feather shapes out of cardboard stock or construction paper.


Out of  the brown cardboard stock cut a circle the exact same size as the top of the toilet paper roll.


Glue down the circle to the top. It will help keep the feathers in place. The glue will dry and become invisible, but if it runs at all, just wipe it down.



Cut out a small strip of orange cardboard stock and write the name of the person on it and glue it in place. Voila! You’ve got an adorable place card for your Thanksgiving table!

This is my grandmother’s china she purchased in 1945 and gave to me before she passed away. There’s service for 18 including soup bowels and serving pieces. I treasure this beautiful gift and it’s just perfect for my Thanksgiving table! Every time I use it it’s as if my grandmother is here with me.

Halloween Crafts for Kids: Make a Giant Bat Out of Plastic Garbage Bags

It’s a perfect day for crafting, and there are many Halloween crafts for kids to make! This giant bat is fun and easy and you’ve probably got all you need in your house to get this simple project done.



  • Giant sheet of paper to make template (can tape together newspaper if need be)
  • Black marker
  • Ruler or measuring tape
  • 2 large black garbage bags
  • Scissors
  • Tacky Glue
  • Tape (Black Duct tape works well)
  • Craft paint (or glow in the dark paint)
  • Crumpled newspaper or tissue paper
  • Clips or clamps



Carefully cut open two plastic garbage bags by cutting both sides open (but not the bottom). Open them up and lay them on top of each other, lined up.


Measure half the width of the open bags and find a piece of paper that size. You can always tape several pieces together to make it the right size. Draw half a bat. You can look for bat templates on line or copy this drawing. It’s really easy. Cut the bat shape out of the paper.


Use the bat template to cut out one half of the bat and then flip it over to get the symmetrical side and cut out the other half of the bag. Now you’ve got your bat shape.


Paint whatever design you like on your bat. I used glow-in-the-dark paints.  After it dries, start gluing the edges together, but leave a large opening for stuffing. Let the glue completely dry. This may take a while because the plastic takes longer to dry than paper. When the glue is dry, gently stuff crumpled newspaper or tissue paper into the bat to give it shape. Don’t over stuff it or it won’t seal on the edges. Finish sealing it with more glue when it is all stuffed. You’ll need to use clips or clamps to hold the last section of glued plastic together. I used small pieces of black duct tape every six inches or so to really hold it together.


Hang your giant bat outside with fishing line. I hung mine upside down, just like real bats hang.