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Ivy Bass

Ivy Bass- - - - - - - - - - and her Underwear Secrets - - - - -


Ivy Bass at her 90th Birthday party

Tiny, friendly and capable, Miss Bass was for years the village upholsterer and tailor. She would tackle anything from trouser alterations to reupholstering three piece suites.

Ivy’s father bought Rae’s Farm in 1944 for £3,000. The house was tumbledown and the farm in a mess, but Bertie Bass liked a challenge!

Ivy was the eldest and when work on the farm allowed, she sewed for the family. She can’t remember when she first started, but by the age of four she was making dolls’ clothes. Somehow, sewing was in the genes. One grandmother trained as a dressmaker, although she loathed it. The other, untrained granny was a natural seamstress. 
The photograph is of Ivy at her 90th. Birthday party in November 2012


During the war and for several years after, cloth and clothing was rationed. It was well nigh impossible to buy clothes for a large family. Ivy used to buy one and a half dress lengths and make two dresses out of them for herself and her two sisters. Consequently, two out of the three were often seen in matching costumes!

For underwear, Ivy resorted to the calico bags used for wrapping hams. At least the bags were un-rationed, unlike knickers, for which you had to hand over money and two coupons a pair!
The bags were bought on the market, washed, and Ivy made knickers out of them for her mother and the girls.
One day, a U.S airman gave sister Audrey a ripped parachute made of silk! With it, the females were all kitted out with gorgeous blouses and camiknickers.

These days, though Ivy still does light sewing, she has taken up knitting, which she became keen on because of her friend Elsie Hepher’s liking for it. Now, whenever she watches TV, her fingers are busy. One recent project has been knitting socks for soldiers in Afghanistan. And, talking of “light sewing”, In 2010 she made a gorgeous frontal for the church altar out of heavy silk brocade. It is used in Lent and Advent, so think of Ivy if you go to church during those times.

Ivy Bass died on 15 April 2017 - aged 94.

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On the Occasion of her 90th Birthday.

MISS IVY BASS. Little Lady  Big Heart

Over one hundred family, friends and neighbours gathered at the village hall on the 26th November 2012 to celebrate the 90th birthday of Ivy Bass, resident of East Winch since 1978. 
Originally from Sutton Bridge where her parents had a family farm they moved to Gayton before settling in East Winch.

On her special birthday party day, Ivy celebrated with relatives from Australia and around the globe, many who had made long journeys to share her day.

Last year, with her nephew, she visited Australia to see her brother Peter and family. Ivy arrived at Perth during the forest fires, and had to move out for safety, and then endured one of the worst heat waves ever - and her sister in law didn't believe in air conditioning!
They travelled many miles around Western Australia, a country she has been to before. Typical of Ivy’s adventurous “get up and go spirit”, she has in the past visited the U.S.A. to see family and friends.

When at home her passion is for sewing, gardening and cooking.

Over the years she has been a kind, helpful and caring parishioner, a wonderful inspiration to everyone who has the pleasure of meeting and knowing her.

You can always see her in little Nissan, driving around the village off to some trip or errand.
Ever willing to lend a helping hand by supporting the local church and other village events, she recently made an altar cloth for All Saints Church East Winch.

Ivy has always embraced the concept “Life is for Living”.

Everyone at her party raised their glasses in a toast to Ivy, wishing her continued good health, happiness and many, many more happy birthdays.