The Ladies' Tea Guild

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Thanksgiving preparations, ca. 1915

image from Grandma's Graphics
"How to Select Poultry.

In selecting poultry full-grown fowls have the best flavor, provided they are young.  The age may be determined by turning the wing backward--if it yields, it is tender.  The same is true if the skin on the leg is readily broken.  Older poultry makes the best soup.  The intestines should be removed at once, but frequently in shipping they are left in and, hence, when removed, the fowl needs washing in several waters.  The next to the last water should contain a half teaspoonful of baking soda, which sweetens and renders all more wholesome.  The giblets are the gizzard, heart, liver and neck."-- from The Bride's Cook Book, ca. 1915.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Chit-chat of November fashions from 1850

_Peterson's Magazine_, 1850.

CHIT-CHAT OF NOVEMBER FASHIONS. (Godey's Lady's Book, November 1850)

To commence with out-door dress, it will be noticed that the favorite materials for walking costumes are merino, cashmeres, and silks. The first are exquisitely fine and soft, falling to the figure ... Plain colors are most in favor, and, most of all, a new rich hue of dark brown; this is the most distingue of the multitude of shades that pile the counters of our merchants. Among them are every variety of greens, blues, crimson, corn color, purples, browns, and scarlets. The same hues are in cashmere, with the advantage of being lighter and a trifle less costly. There are several styles of trimming for these heavy materials; one very simple, alternate rows of wide and very narrow plain silk braid, or galloon. A more expensive mode is velvet of the same color as the dress, embroidered with narrow braid, which has a richer effect than embossing, and, being so heavy, is suitable for an out-door costume. Alternate folds of cashmere and satin are also very pretty, but not decidedly new. Worsted lace is also much used, and a quilling of plain or velvet ribbon is always elegant.

Now stir the fire, and close the shutters fast,
Let fall the curtains, wheel the sofa round,
And, while the bubbling and loud-hissing urn
Throws up a steamy column, and the cups
That cheer but not inebriate, wait on each,
So let us welcome peaceful evening in.
-- William Cowper (1731-1800)
"The Winter Evening" (Book Four), _The Task_ (1784)