Let's Talk with Lois Winston

April 18, 2024

Everything Old is New Again

Image from Pixabay

Mid-century modern is all the rage and has been for some time now, thanks to HGTV. Then there’s the recent megahit Barbie, in part, a love letter to the fashions and music of the sixties. Women’s liberation, Flower Power, the sexual revolution, the sixties had it all and so much more. Including a plethora of crafts.

Image from Pixabay

Although people have been crafting from the very beginning of time, first out of necessity, then later for beauty and pleasure, there was a huge surge in leisure-time crafting in the sixties. Tie-dye, batik, macramé, decoupage, quilting, latch hook, string art, granny squares, Shrinky dinks, and velvet painting were all popular pastimes.

Years ago, when I was asked to write a crafting-themed cozy mystery series, I decided that instead of choosing one craft on which to base the series, I’d make my sleuth the crafts editor at a women’s magazine. That way I could incorporate a different craft in each book. Fast forward thirteen years since the release of Assault with a Deadly Glue Gun, the first book in my Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery Series, and Sorry, Knot Sorry, the thirteenth book in the series, is now up for preorder with a release scheduled for June 4th.

Much has happened to my reluctant amateur sleuth during that time, although only eighteen months have passed in her fictitious world. In this book, there are monumental changes afoot. No spoilers, but you might get a feel for things from the retro tie-dyed background and the knotted “Knot” of the book’s cover. Rest assured, though, there won’t be an Shrinky dinks, string art, or velvet paintings! After all, crafting standards must be maintained!

What you will find, of course, is murder. And some laughs. After all, I do write a humorous cozy mystery series.

How do you feel about the retro mid-century modern trend we see everywhere these days? Are you a fan, or would you rather leave the past in the past? Post a comment for a chance to win a promo code for a free audiobook download of one of the first nine audiobooks available in the Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery Series.

Sorry, Knot Sorry
An Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery, Book 13

Magazine crafts editor Anastasia Pollack may finally be able to pay off the remaining debt she found herself saddled with when her duplicitous first husband dropped dead in a Las Vegas casino. But as Anastasia has discovered, nothing in her life is ever straightforward. Strings are attached. Thanks to the success of an unauthorized true crime podcast, a television production company wants to option her life—warts and all—as a reluctant amateur sleuth.

Is such exposure worth a clean financial slate? Anastasia isn’t sure, but at the same time, rumors are flying about layoffs at the office. Whether she wants national exposure or not, Anastasia may be forced to sign on the dotted line to keep from standing in the unemployment line. But the dead bodies keep coming, and they’re not in the script.

Craft tips included.

Buy Links (ebook preorder available now, print available 6/4)
Apple Books

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Want to know more about our author Lois Winston? Visit her WEBSITE

Posted in Let's Talk, with Lois Winston • Tags: , , , , |  31 Comments


31 thoughts on “Everything Old is New Again

  1. As long as I don’t have to walk through shag carpeting to reach an avocado kitchen, I am okay with the retro ideas.

  2. My husband and I are so in love with mid-century modern that we bought a condo built in 1958 and have it furnished with period pieces. We’ve been here three years already — and still love it.

    1. Cheryl, I’ve never been a fan of mid-century modern, but there are some aspects of the architecture that I like, such as open concept living areas. (As long as I had an office where I could close the door and not be disturbed!) I hope you haven’t decorated with any black velvet Elvis paintings, though!

  3. I have found it interesting how some things go away and then come back years later. In a way it has been fun to watch. I used to love my bell bottom pants. Than they went away to skinny jeans. Nope not a fan. Now they are partly back again. Yah quilting dash lady at comcast dot net

  4. I’m with Debra on the avocado kitchen and shag carpet, but I still have my mid-’70’s macrame shoulder bag, which I think of as hippie-style, rather than mid-century. I look at it longingly from time to time, and now I’m thinking about pulling it out of the closet. Can’t wait for your next book to be out there, Lois. I know it’s a good one!

    1. Thanks, Gay! Hippie-style and mid-century modern went hand-in-hand. Mid-century is usually considered 50s-70s, and hippiedom falls right in the middle of that, from the mid-60s thru early 70s.

  5. I love this discussion. I have two new/old obsessions: handkerchiefs and cookbooks. Both hold unbelievable stories. Thank you for this…..

    1. Shannon, I have some embroidered handkerchiefs and linen napkins that belonged to my husband’s grandmother. Much older than mid-century modern, but the workmanship is exquisite.

  6. Great post, Lois! The 70s was such a sentinel era for me. In that decade I graduated from high school and college and married. It was hard financially to do more than cover basics, so what furniture I had was hand-me-downs from other eras! I still have a set of rust, gold, and avocado canisters I got with my S&H Green Stamps. I liked the green appliances then, and I have a seafoam green kitchen now, so I’m still doing my own not-quite 70s thing. I love crafts and eagerly embraced macrame, tie die, and anything sewing. (I sewed my prom dress out of some very wildly patterned orange fabric). I did a lot of crewel embroidery in those years, even embroidered a representative cover background from Lord of the Rings on a pair of wide-legged jeans.

    1. Maggie, I still have a set of Pyrex bowls (minus one that I broke) in the quintessential harvest gold pattern of the 70s. Money was certainly a consideration back then. Our living room bookshelves were made by stacking pine boards and bricks.

  7. I *like* anything retro/vintage/antique and I appreciate handmade/crafty/arty things, so I do tend to really enjoy these mid-century modern things; however, I wouldn’t always like to decorate with them or wear them myself…. unless they had sentimental value 😊

  8. Oh boy, all those crafts take me back! I remember macrame and granny squares. I never did those crafts but I did teach craft classes for a craft store. Since I moved from Iowa (long, cold winters there for crafting) to Southern California, I just don’t do crafts anymore. Endless days of warm sunshine lead to the outdoors and other interests, but I always admire well done crafts.

  9. I like some retro kitchen ware. My husband still listens to vinyl records. So we’re fans to some extent but not of the kitchen color schemes or Formica countertops.

  10. I am okay with it to a certain extent. Some of the less attractive things should stay in the past such as some of the fashion choices but I am fine with the crafts since you should be allowed to do whatever relaxes you.

    1. Cherierj, that’s the thing about taste, though. What one person loves, another thinks is hideous. The nice thing about most of the crafts from that period, though, is that they can (and have been) updated.

  11. Hi Lois, and congratulations on the new book. When I wore hip-hugging bell-bottoms, mini skirts, and a leather hat in 1975, I thought I was making a big statement!! Now I see those clothes on people once again and wonder what statement they think they’re making. I enjoy seeing everything come around again for nostalgic reasons, though.

    1. LOL, Kim! I’m with you on that! I owned a crocheted suede strip vest back in the day. In my defense, I didn’t buy it. It was a gift, and I only wore it once because it left suede lint on my shirt and jeans.

  12. When I was a teenager, I did macramé and crocheted granny squares. I still have a couple of afghans made with granny squares. I like retro but there are some trends that should stay in the past.

  13. I have a few pieces of furniture from my husband’s grandmother, some of them built by his grandfather. I was just given a rocking chair that I used to sit on in her kitchen and listen to her stories. It’s settling in my house which is on the same property as their old house. I love the memories it brings back.

    1. Sharon, we have a pre-Civil War linen chest that belonged to my husband’s grandmother. She had most likely inherited it from her parents or grandparents.

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