J. Megan Mays is one of my favorite customers at Pine Street Art Works. She gets what I'm doing -  and shares my passion for ephemera. Last week she brought in a disc of scans from her collection of vintage needle books so I could share them with you. Yay Megan, thanks so much for spreading the love of mid century needle book graphics.

The first three are just graphically stunning and simple. They are unusual for the genre because they do not feature people. I've never seen another one like this homage to sewing accessories.

Needlebook, sewing illustration, pin cushion, sewing tape measure, scissors, pins  

Needle book. Collection of J. Megan Mays. Made in USA.

Needlebook Ideal Laundry (house) from J. Megan Mays 

Needle book -Ideal Laundry. Collection of J. Megan Mays

Needlebook, Woolworth, needle illustration, thread, needles in sunrise

Woolworth Needle Book - Collection of J. Megan Mays. Made in Western Germany.

Typical for needle books is the travel theme because a needle and thread can be so handy on a journey. Railway, airplane, ships, even rockets are common themes for travel in needle land. This family seems on a mythical trip through the Alps.

Needlebook, family travel by train, family 1940's, rail travel, needle case, mother father duaghter in train

The Silvertown, needle case. Collection of J. Megan Mays

Here is the same family in a different, probably earlier guise. You often see the same graphic worked and reworked by different artists and factories.

needle book, maple brand, family looks at mountains, train travel, child pointing 

Maple Brand Needle Book. Collection of J. Megan Mays

This family of four is traveling by air. Or maybe they are welcoming Daddy home after an arduous journey by propeller plane. Gone are the days when we dressed up to travel.

needle book, family with airplane, travel, 1940's, airplane, lady in gloves, father hugs children

Reliance Needle Book. Collection of J. Megan Mays. Made in Japan.

This couple is off to the stars on their own private rocket.

Needlebook, atomic, ride a rocket, man woman ride rocket ship, travel to outer space 1940's 

Atomic Gold Eye Needle Book. Collection of J. Megan Mays. Made in Japan.

Meanwhile, back home, we revisit the theme of women and children sewing. Or, in this case, Mom is sewing and the kids are fighting.

Needlebook, mother sewing, kids fighting, huge sewing needle 

My Own needle book, Collection of J. Megan Mays. Made in Japan

And here we are back to one of the endless variations of a group of women sewing and embroidering.

Needlebook, lovely lady, three women sew, embroider, sewing circle, needle and thread 

Lovely Lady Needle Book, Collection of J. Megan Mays. Made in Japan

So, thanks to Megan for letting me use her collection and I hope you enjoyed it.