Tales from the Nursery

Foale and Tuffin, Inspirational Images, jean varon, john bates, seventies fashion, Vogue
Clothes by Foale and Tuffin
Ninny Nanny Prettycoat
In an oatmeal petticoat.
The fuller the sleeves,
The sweeter the roses.

Delicious nursery rhyme themed spread from Vogue, April 1970. Photographed by Elisabeth Novick. I have included the strange nursery rhymes they have mangled created. Even though I think they’re a load of tosh. Why so literal, anonymous Vogue writer? Why not just use the originals and leave something to the imagination?

The photos are pretty incredible though, which makes it all worthwhile….

Be a fine lady and wear a fine dress,
Fragile as Bo-Peep’s, cut like a caress.
Sleeves are the prettiest,
Bloomers the wittiest,
In light silk and voile, paisley or crepe.


Clothes by Poole
Take a tuck, take a tuck tailor’s man.
Sew me some voile fast as you can.
Frill it and smock it,
And colour it white.
Then add pretty bloomers not quite out of sight.

Clothes by John Bates for Jean Varon
Little Miss Muffet sat on a tuffet
Wearing brown paisley and blue.
The skirt length was midi,
The bodice was pretty,
The trousers were brown paisley too.

Clothes by Francis Vaughan
Mary Mary silk and suede
How does this garden grow?
With smocking green
And pinafore
And hollyhocks all in a row.

Clothes by Lady Fingers
Several yards of ice-cream crepe,
Several yards of stitching,
Smock it high and frill the cuffs.
The dress is quite enchanting.

4 thoughts on “Tales from the Nursery

  1. Discovering old copies of Vogue with all those dreamy '70s photos is what got me hooked on fashion.. They're just as appealing now as they were in my childhood. Thanks for the memories!

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