The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 9, Issue 12 (March 1, 1935)
Our Women's Section — Timely Notes and Useful Hints
The swagger coat has departed, and in its stead we have the coolie coat—hip-length, loose-fitting. With its round yoke and link fastening, it gives the correct Chinese coolie line. Another adoption for the successfully slim is the Chinese tunic, a delightful fashion, with its little Chinese collar standing stiffly up round the neck-line.
Russia contributes the Cossack coat with its wide revers, worn with a fur cravat and cap.
Coats and skirts are slim-fitting, fullness in the latter being supplied by inverted pleats. The Norfolk influence is obvious in tweeds. Most tweed suits are belted, and many have patch pockets (four, very often). Buttons are in wood or leather. One autumn suit in heavy linen had an open inverted pleat at the back, giving a quaint, loose effect.
Checks are not nearly so prominent. Dark blouses are “fashion firsts.” The type with saddle shoulders, notched collar and shirt fastening are smart for wear with skirts or suits.
Long, tight sleeves are featured in many new winter frocks. The raglan sleeve is smart. Bell sleeves are new, especially with a tight band of contrasting material peeping out at the wrist.
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The Evening Silhouette.
Bell sleeves for afternoon and bell skirts for evening! In the bell skirt the fullness is at the back, often ending in a slight train. Metallic moires, lamés or velvets are delightful fabrics for this style of gown.
For the slim, yet rounded, nothing could be more beautiful than the pencil or flower stalk silhouette. The frock moulds the figure, fullness being introduced unobtrusively below the knee-line. The shoulder line is widened by means of shoulder frills, the dropped Victorian shoulder line, or capes in material, fur or feathers. One glorious gown was moulded (there is no truer word) in suffle green satin. As its wearer moved, the light glinted and flowed over her. Dipping over one shoulder was a cape of shaded green ostrich feathers, lovely in contrast with her corn-gold hair.
Under the gleam of the electrics, expanses of flesh no longer shine. In other words, backless evening gowns are “out.” Frocks are cut out or slashed in various ways, but the newest mode is the slit back, fastening high at the neck-line. Neck-lines are mostly high and round, or draped.
Velvet yokes, sashes, capes and bows contrast with frocks. Sequins and diamente sparkle on the new evening gowns, and metallic weaves in daylight. Hostess frocks feature frilling or pleating at the hem, or kilting on cuffs and neck-line. Clips are important, whether it be to fasten a scarf or a draped neck-line. Faggoting is featured on yokes or in dainty collar and cuff sets. The new initial brooches of cut-out chromium fasten scarves or bandanas. The new cravats are very short. Scarves are worn with suits, coats or frocks. With suits and coats they are tied cravat fashion, or doubled and the loose end passed through the loop last formed. One new coat with a neat fur collar had a scarf passing round under the collar and tying in a bow in front. Many tweed coats feature scarf collars. One with braided ends had a braided beret to match.
An easy way to furbish up a last winter's frock is to make for it a little taffeta collar and scarf cut in one.
A useful set comprises a double-breasted corduroy velvet jacket with velvet hat to match.
Heads and Hats.
A word as to the new hair-dressing. Curls at the back are “out.” We wear our back hair shorter and straighter. But the sides! To be correct we should have three tiers of curls. Our hats show our curls. Large, floppy berets in velvet are smart, but I have a tiny doubt. I have seen these berets worn by Miss Seventeen and a well-groomed Forty, but I would have preferred, in each case, one of the new little felts.
Hats I must really describe next month; also the glorious new colours and materials, especially the nubbly fabrics and the glinting metallic-finished woollens.
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False Romance In The Short Story.
Consider the following two plots:—
Beautiful girl from poor home works for modiste; blues her savings on model frock; wearing it for first time is caught in rain and offered lift by expensive young man in expensive car. Acquaintance develops. Girl pretends to belong to leisured class. Young man proposes marriage and is joyfully accepted, despite the fact that he had seen through her subterfuge from the start.
Wealthy young playwright registers at hotel in assumed name. Makes acquaintance of beautiful young girl who turns out to be actress down on her luck. His Rolls Royce reveals him as wealthy man. Girl reproaches him for deception but accepts weddingring and lead in his new play.
One of these plots was culled from a leading English fiction magazine, and the other from an obscure women's weekly. One was by a noted English novelist, the other by an unknown woman scribbler. Plot for plot it is impossible to place one before the other, though I will concede the novelist slight superiority in presentation. The remuneration alone serves to differentiate between the known and the unknown, the former probably receiving page 42 for one short story what the latter might be lucky enough to earn by her pen in one year.
For sugary-sweetness and shoddy romance, the stories are on a par. Let us only hope that the novelist, at least, realised that he was degrading his art; that, instead of depicting life as it is, harsh with fears and failures, beautiful in self-triumphs and ideals, he was creating a false and harmful impression of existence.
Physical beauty, for instance, should not be the only admirable attribute of a heroine, nor handsome features and a large bank-roll of a hero. The idea is farcical. Our two writers have been busily creating false values. The joys of life are not those money can buy, yet we have these foolish stories appealing to the vanity and greed of young people. In most cases, a fuller experience of life will probably provide a truer sense of values, but ideas culled from sentimental literature may have already falsely oriented a young life.
Admittedly, editors are forced to publish the best available instead of the best possible. It behoves us therefore to read always with a critical eye lest our own sense of values be impaired; best of all, to refrain from reading that which is obviously unreal.
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Pickles, Sauces, etc.
Vegetables for making pickles should be young, fresh and free from bruises. Care should be taken to see that they are not over-cooked, but that they are crisp and tender. Vinegar must be boiled. The jars and bottles must of course be well sealed and air-tight. Use earthenware and enamelled vessels for pickle and sauce making.
Apple Chutney.—3lbs. apples, 1lb. shallots, 1 1/2lbs. onions, 1/2lb. seeded raisins, 1/4lb. brown sugar, 1 quart vinegar, 1/4oz. white pepper, 1/4oz. curry powder, 1/4oz. ground ginger, pinch cayenne.
Method: Mince or chop apples, onions and shallots, and place in a preserving pan. Mix the dry ingredients to a thin paste with a little vinegar and add to the apples, etc. Cover with the vinegar and boil for one hour. Stir well. Bottle.
Plum Sauce.—6lbs. plums, 2 1/2lbs. sugar, 3 pints vinegar, 6 teaspoons salt, 1 saltspoon cayenne, 1 tablespoon cloves, 1 dessertspoon ground ginger.
Method: Boil all together till reduced to a pulp, about two hours. Strain and bottle when cold.
Tomato Sauce.—5lbs. tomatoes, 1lb. onions, 1 1/2 pints vinegar, 1lb. apples, 1lb. brown sugar, 2ozs. allspice, 2ozs. cloves, 2ozs. salt, 2ozs. peppercorns, 1/2oz. ground ginger, 1oz. garlic (if liked), cayenne pepper to taste.
Method: Slice tomatoes, apples and onions. Boil all together until soft, then add sugar, vinegar, spices and salt. Boil slowly for two hours. Rub through a colander. Reheat and boil until it is like a thick cream—about half-an-hour. Bottle when cold and cork securely.
Mustard Pickle.—1 cauliflower, 1lb. beans, 1lb. green tomatoes, 6 small cucumbers, 1lb. pickling onions, 1 1/2 quarts vinegar. Method: Divide cauliflower and cut other vegetables into small pieces, leaving onions whole. Sprinkle enough salt to make a brine, and leave till next day. Wash and drain through a colander. Mix 1/4lb. tin mustard, 1/2 cupful brown sugar, 2 tablespoons flour, and 1 teaspoon of tumeric powder, wet with cold vinegar, stir into boiling vinegar, add the pickles and boil for five minutes. Remove from fire and scatter a few chillies through. Bottle when cold, and seal.
Pickled Onions.—Place onions (silver skins are best) in warm water for 10 minutes, then skin and soak them in brine (1oz. salt to quart of water, boiled for 10 minutes) for 12 hours. Drain away the water, and dry the onions on a cloth. Pack into the jars closely with a lump of loaf sugar in each jar. Fill up with boiling vinegar to which 1 teaspoon of salt and 1 1/2 teaspoons of pickling spices, peppercorns and all spice have been added for each jar (2lb. jam jar). Cover when cold. Shallots are done in the same way, but are not soaked in the salt and water.
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Railway Staff at Oamaru Station, 53 Years Ago.
Standing (left to right).—Messrs. Hurst (Clerk), D. Wallace (Cadet), H. Pearce (afterwards Stationmaster, Milton), W. Vincent (Goods Foreman), —. Todd (Clerk).
Sitting (left to right).—A. Heskett (Cadet, afterwards Stationmaster, Kurow), A. Weir (Shipping Foreman). T. W. Brebner (Chief Clerk, afterwards Traffic Manager, Invercargill), S. J. Loring (Stationmaster, afterwards District Traffic Manager, Greymouth), G. Brownlee (Cadet, afterwards District Traffic Manager, Wanganui), —. Farquhar (Cadet).
Mr. G. Brownlee, who was District Traffic Manager at Wanganui at the time of his retirement in 1919, has kindly supplied the above photograph. Mr. Brownlee is well known to railwaymen and also as a public man in Auckland, where, subsequent to his retirement, he became interested in educational matters and is now a member of the Auckland Education Board, a position he has occupied for the last 12 years. He was also a member of the Auckland City Council for four years, and of the Auckland Grammar School Board and other school controlling authorities. It is interesting to recall that Mr. Brownlee was an original member of the Government Railways Superannuation Board, a position he occupied for five years.
Hints for Beginners.—Do not wind the wool into a hard ball, as this stretches the wool and takes away its elasticity. Wind loosely over the fingers, withdrawing them frequently to change the position of the ball and to keep it symmetrical.
To join wool, thread one end into a darning needle and run needle about three inches along into the other end, drawing the wool through. This does away with unsightly knots on the inside of the garment.
To produce a firm edge to your work always knit into the back of cast-on stitches.
Before making up a garment run in all the ends neatly and securely on the wrong side. Lay each part separately wrong side up, on an ironing blanket, and pin or tack down exactly to the size and shape required. Then with a damp cloth and hot iron carefully press. Sew up the seams neatly with wool, placing the two edges together and sewing stitch to stitch.
The seams of knitted jumpers may be stitched with a machine. It is quicker and straighter and makes a better job. Join the shoulder seams first, then stitch the sleeves into the armholes. The sleeve and sideseam can then be sewn in one. Press all the seams carefully and they will hardly show. A great deal depends upon the care taken in pressing and making up a knitted garment. Many a well-knitted garment has been spoiled by careless finishing off.
To Utilise Old Wool.—Most of us have some good out-of-date hand-knitted garments in our wardrobes. This wool may be washed and re-knitted and, provided it is not faded, will make up like new. First, carefully unpick all the seams. Unravel the wool and wind into skeins, tying them in several places with wool of a different colour to make the skeins secure.
Now soak each skein of wool in warm soapsuds, using Lux for preference. Wash well, squeezing with the hands. Do not rub or wring the wool. Rinse thoroughly in warm water and lay on newspaper or a towel in a shady place to dry. The careful washing and drying removes all the crinkles from the wool.
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Frequently people who are apparently in normal health are the victims of constipation. This condition should be prevented if possible. The cause must be discovered and removed or avoided. The condition may be the result of habit, a faulty diet, insufficient intake of water or an indoor sedentary life. There may be few symptoms, or there may be headache, abdominal discomfort, and loss of appetite with a coated tongue and fetid breath.
The treatment consists of the regulation of the diet, regular exercise, including one or two daily walks and the cultivation of regular habits. The diet should include green vegetables (raw and cooked), fruit, including prunes, figs, raisins, dates, oranges, grapefruit and apples, wholemeal bread, wholemeal or oatmeal porridge, and plenty of water (hot or cold). Avoid rich and fried food, pastry, etc. Sipping a glass of hot water before breakfast is helpful. Aperients should be avoided as much as possible. Small does of liquid paraffin are efficacious.page 44