Wednesday 9 March 2016

Slimosizes and unshrinkable underwear

Any British vintage lover will probably have seen a few Norman Linton dresses on their travels. 

In my head, Norman's frocks are on a par with Richard Stump's - frumpy, not that exciting, made for middle-aged housewives in the 1960-70s. Ebay listings are fond of referring to such dresses as granny (or geek) chic... 
(No insult intended to middle-aged housewives - after all, I am one. Or grannies - I was very fond of mine.)
But hey, sometimes Granny takes a trip, a middle-aged housewife rocks a psychedelic maxi, and expectations are confounded.

Because I'm nerdy like that, I tried researching Norman Linton clothing but found little information. 
What I did discover was a hilarious Pathe News clip from 1953, in which the man himself is seen measuring robust women to make an outsize dressmaker's dummies.

I wonder if the slimosizes label was intended to make ladies with generous proportions feel better about themselves? 

This dress is my first purchase from my shop; I couldn't resist the trumpet sleeves and groovy print. 

First of many, no doubt.

1960s Norman Linton maxi dress - charity shopped
1970s cropped faux fur jacket - Kinky Melon
1960s tapestry bag - jumble sale
Boots - retail (sale)
I wore my new frock to work on Saturday, followed by a trip out for tapas with the family.

Hmm, the beauty and grace of the distaff side of the family knows no bounds... 
Actually, I've already made a second purchase, driven to it by the ongoing cold temperatures;
a 1960s Wolsey vest, just what I need under a dress on a chilly day.

Wolsey is a Leicester-based heritage British label, one of the oldest textile manufacturers in the world. Known for their knitwear, Wolsey underwear was worn by Scott, Amundsen and Shackleton on their polar expeditions. If it's good enough for those conditions, it'll do me.

(Do have a look at the link, there are some fabulous photos.)

Cool packaging too.

(Vix, I know you don't really do undies, but look, it's you!)
I'm late again for Visible Monday, but luckily Patti is a forgiving hostess and lets me sneak in after hours.
Do bear with me while I try to find a rhythm for posting and commenting - I'll get there!


Melanie said...

That dress is incredible on you! You should have seen some of my nan's dresses in the seventies! xxx

Vronni's Style Meanderings said...

What a fabulous dress! It looks amazing on you.

I wish I could find some exciting vintage like this. There seems to be little in the way of vintage in Bedford. I don't know why that is; I've been looking very carefully and maybe it's just that I haven't developed an 'eye' yet for spotting it yet!
The OS is clearly for'outsize' women which we now politely call 'plus' sizes.

I have been a fan of thermal underwear for sometime now; particularly vests/camisoles and I don't take them off until 'cast ne'er a clout 'til May is out'!

Have a lovely week, Curtise.


Mother of Reinvention said...

Cor, I love that dress and a Slimosize sounds right up my street. I have never come across a Norman Linton dress on my travels but I do think that I have a Wolsey vest or two. You look fabulous in your maxi. I love the sleeves and the fabric. Hope that the shop is rockin'. Xx

Sheila said...

What a groovy dress! I love the bright colours, and the bell sleeves are really fab.

Judy C said...

That dress rocks big time.

Suzanne said...

Good thing I wasn't there. There would have been a bit of a fight over that dress. I adore the groovy design and colours with your hair.

We went to a vintage clothing show on the weekend and I thought of you.


bahnwärterin said...

i looove this soft old camisoles!!! warm and pretty!
your newest dress is sooo cool! very groovy and fits like a glove! this curves!!!! glamorous housewife :-)

bahnwärterin said...

p.s.: thanks for the wolsey link - FAB!!!

Fiona said...

Wow, I'm loving that groovy Norman Linton number but it looks a bit slinky and therefore a Wolsey vest is a very sensible idea. Thanks for linking their website, I had no idea they were named after the cardinal because he died in a woolly vest. My aunt bought one of their cashmere scarves in a chazza last week for a pound so we googled it...nearly fifty quid! I think Nina should be on the stage when she grows up.

Goody said...

That would have been much too cool for the housewives I knew in the 70's (think polyester trousers with elastic waists). Such a great print (I'd kill for wallpaper like that).

That's so great you were able to see where your vintage pieces went. I always hope my donations find good homes.

Señora Allnut said...

mwahaha, love to see another middle aged lady rocking a psychedelic maxi!, hurrah!!, and looking so gorgeous!, those sleeves ara absolutely amazing! and the colors are fabulous!

SAM said...

want to rock wild colors-just not brave for my day to day. I do like a good pair of undies though.

Melanie said...

Oooh, this dress ranks among my favourites on you! It would rank as a favourite on me too! Bwahaha. Good catch. Yes, you will be surrounded by temptation every day at work. I can think of worse things. I love your family portrait as well. Looks like good times.

Connie said...

Oh what a wonderful dress. You look quite lovely and slim-o!! You are becoming quite the sartorial historian. I love it. And it looks like your kids are just as impressed as I am. That was such a funny video. The NSS. Ha ha.

BadPenny said...

Looking great & not frumpy at all; very Penelope Keith x

Mim said...

"In my head, Norman's frocks are on a par with Richard Stump's - frumpy, not that exciting, made for middle-aged housewives in the 1960-70s. Ebay listings are fond of referring to such dresses as granny (or geek) chic... "

You say that like it's a bad thing... I'm now off to Google both!

You look absolutely fab in your maxi, though I'd never imagined you were plus size - are you sure slimosizes isn't for people who are slim?

Polyester Princess said...

I can't see many grannies wearing this dress, and frumpy it certainly isn't. What a fabulous print, I'm sure I wouldn't be able to resist it either. As for the vest, by appointed of her majesty the queen, no less! I'm new to blogging and this is my first comment to one of your post, although I have been following you for quite a while. Xxx Ann

Vix said...

The secret's out, I'm the secret pin-up girl fro vintage thermals. The glamour!! I think Wolsey have sold out now, I used to buy my Dad their pullovers and shirts from Matalan.
I love that frock and am delighted you didn't pass it up and put in on the rails. I sold its black and white twin in London last year, same SlimOSizes label although it was far from outsize by today's standards.
Doesn't it go a treat with the Kinky faux fur?
Mmmmm...tapas! Your lot ain't half sophisticated.
This time next week!!!!
Love you. xxxxx

Beth Waltz said...

The maxi is NOT at all frumpy, nor is the faux fur bolero you're wearing for warmth. (Had wondered when we'd see what you've acquiring for yourself from the new shoppe.)

Vix in a Wolsey? Somehow one can envision our Vix wearing underwear as outerwear and doing so with grace.

thorne garnet said...

never heard of that label. The dress is outstanding. And your kids a cute as the dickens ( I'm sure they will love that)

Miss Magpie said...

Absolutely love that frock on you, no wonder you snapped it up!

Strangely enough I have a fab royal blue and gold abstract print number from Norman Linton (with matching jacket), I too did a bit of research afterwards hoping for more gems and was disappointed to find it was an exception rather than the rule compared to the rest of his frocks for sale on Ebay. Clearly he had the occasional mad design moment!

Lisa said...

That's quite a first purchase from your new shop!
Got to love a bit of thermal underwear, needs must and all that.
Lisa x

Ivana Split said...

What a great first purchase! This shop must be pretty awesome:). That dress is totally gorgeous. I love its print, it makes me wish I was born in the seventies (but fortunately seventies are having a come back).

I really like how you styled that maxi dress with that cropped jacket...absolutely brilliant!

Emma Kate at Paint and Style said...

Wow! FANTASTIC DRESS! And so perfect on you!
I'd never be without my thermals either.

Sue said...

You do find some pretty good stuff and that frock looks perfect on you, length, colour, fit, the lot!!

Ulla-Marie said...

I believe you have outdone yourself with that look!

Unknown said...

Love the dress you look fabulous and I also love thermal underwear its a must where I live right now :-) dee xx

Patti said...

Oh that's a fab dress, with such a 70's brand name: "slim-a-size." (no worse than "spanx", yeah? You and the fam look wonderful and happy. Thanks so much for linking up,


Lynn Holland said...

Fabulous print and the sleeves are outrageously gorgeous. Good shoplifting sleeves haha. Oh but you are the manager so you'd be robbing yourself hmm ! Forget that one.
You could always model the clothes in the shop then you wouldn't have to spend your hard earned pennies,
Hoping to spend some of mine with Vix this weekend,
Lynn X X x

Mrs Bertimus said...

You look absolutely stunning!
Think you'll need to buy a new wardrobe for your new wardrobe now you're working in that wonderful shop of yours! X

Forest City Fashionista said...

There's nothing "boring" or "housewife" about the print on that dress! Brilliant colours, and fab sleeves.

Those do look like very practical and cozy undies - if they are good enough for Arctic explorers than they must be of excellent quality. Vix makes a cute underwear model!

Ivy Black said...

That's a beauty and you fecking rock it! My gran used to love her Norman Linton frocks. They were her best...for going out-out...dinner dances and such like.
I have got a couple of Seventies Damart vests that I've been putting to goo duse of late. Nothing like a bit of thermal wear. Yup, that does look like Vix.
Loves ya.

Melancholy and Menace said...

I completely love that dress, you look gorgeous ♥

freckleface said...

This Norman Linton dude is new to me. Turned out a good frock by the look of it. Can't think of anyone finer modelling that particular number. If Vix has got the Wolsey gig, you've got the Stormin' Norman counterpart. Granny takes a trip? What an excellent idea! I couldn't get through winter without my thermals and wooly tights. I reckon that shop is going to give up some beauties over time. And you get first dibs! I remember you buying that jacket. Here's to nerds. I always look up the labels. Right I'm awarding you first prize for use of vocabulary in a personal style blog. Distaff! Exemplary work. Xxxxx

The Vintage Knitter said...

The name Norman Linton belies how absolutely wonderful that dress is xx

The Style Crone said...

Gorgeous dress! Very vibrant and beautiful with your faux fur jacket. How wonderful that it's from your shop. Looking forward to more!