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Posts Tagged ‘vintage style’

thumbnail (4)Since staying put at home, I started pulling out some of my vintage pieces that I would only wear to an event. Because they are delicate or not as easy to move around in on pubic transport or walking to and from destinations, much of my vintage wardrobe gets only the occasional outing. But earlier in the pandemic I was showing up once a week to my fashion history class in front of my laptop – no BART rides, no long walks – so why not sport some vintage?

This pictured outfit includes a linen skirt that is easy to wear staying in place at my desk, but not running around. The Oxford shoes are not vintage, but they look very 1930s and are fine for the few steps to my desk at home, however, they would be horribly uncomfortable walking eight city blocks from BART to class.

On the shoulder of the lightweight cotton sweater, I’m wearing a silk flower from Britex Fabrics. The silk turban style hat is a favorite from Kiss of the Wolf. 

Now the socks are their own story. I’ve always had a thing for interesting socks and I found these two-tone bobby socks at Molly B in Berkeley. Made in Japan, they were ridiculously expensive, but they are high quality and unique. I like the stripe and the odd color combination.

Check back for more At Home Attire.

 

 

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One of the assignments in the fashion history class I recently completed was to find historical fashion references in current fashion. In magazines I looked for examples covering ancient clothing to the 20th century and matched with historical images from books, plus I had to write a comment.

The late 20th Century: Mini-Dress

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The simple silhouette, high waist and short hem of Michael Kors design revisits (yet again) the mini-skirt fad of the 1960s. (Additionally Kors use of brocade fabric and jeweled embellishment feels a bit 18th century Baroque.)

Of course I love the matching hat! Plus you can’t see very well, but the mules are made of the same dress fabric. Go matchy, matchy!

This is the final installment of Finding Historical Fashion Today. I hope ODFL readers enjoyed the series. If the stats are any indication, you did.

There will be more historical fashion posts in the future. Stay tuned.

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Image from Lingerie Parisienne by Juliette Morel (Academy Editions, London, 1976).

Remember those scenes in old films where the movie-star lead actress sits in their bedroom in front of mirrored vanity in a fur-lined, floor-length, semi-sheer chiffon gown? … Those are house gowns. Can we bring those back, dahhhling? Seriously, why not? Why shouldn’t I butter my sprouted-grain breakfast toast in a bell-sleeved satin robe? Or pour myself a bowl of Cinnamon Toast Crunch while wearing the vintage kimono I bought for my wedding? Because let me tell you, it’s pretty **** splendid. 

Jessica De Jesus, creative director for Bitch magazine.

I recently found this quote in the Glamour issue of Bitch magazine, Issue #84, Fall 2019.

Splendid indeed! Let’s bring back the elegant house gown. Doesn’t breakfast taste just a tad better sitting at the table in more festive attire? While we’re at it, let’s enjoy that morning coffee in a pretty mug and place in our laps a cloth napkin. Like Ms. De Jesus says, why not?

I don’t want to “save” my pretty, expensive things for special occasions. Every day is a special occasion and a little attention to seemingly frivolous detail just might lift the spirits.

While we’re lifting our spirits remember: Keep Calm and Keep Your Distance … it’s working!

 

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On the seventh day of Christmas my true love gave to me … a smart vintage ensemble. 

This is my favorite Christmas card. A good friend of mine gave it to me in 2012. (Thanks, Suzette!) I have kept it and happily displayed it every year since. I of course like the vintage outfit, the colors, the snow, and the tree sticking out just a bit. It charms me!

 

 

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Jane Birkin Lights Up Christmas Tree

… when I first went to Paris as a teenager, I could always spot other English girls because we put everything together so badly. French women start with the same ingredients, but they make better use of them. They were always so beautifully turned out with their velvet headbands and clip-on pearls, a scarf casually tossed over their shoulder. But after the counterculture swept through Europe, it became chic to wear whatever you liked, and it was our chance to laugh at the French girls. You’d see photos of Julie Christie coming down her front steps wearing a raincoat  over her pajamas with gum boots, spectacles perched at the end of her nose. It was so unpretentious – and so very English. It’s impossible to be stylish without confidence, you see. 

Jane Birkin – British actress and model.

I’d love to see an example of a British woman back in the day who styled herself so badly and a French woman who did it so perfectly.

Ms. Birkin is known for her effortless style. She sported a basket as a handbag back in the 1960s, which eventually inspired the Hermes Birkin Bag and she has made “borrowing from the boys” look tres chic for the ladies.

Speaking of European style, lately several women have complimented me by saying, “Your style is very European.” I think what they meant is that I have a put together look – my outfits are intentional and cohesive. That’s not at all American but perhaps it is European.

What American fashion strives for is more like Ms. Birkin’s effortless sporty look. I love that, when it works. Making it work, like she says, takes confidence and some instinct for fashion.

My style is vintage inspired with a modern twist here and there. Whatever I’m sporting for the day, a simple a-line dress or a pair of cords, I usually top it with a hat of some kind and that gives any outfit a vintage feel. I often tie a scarf around my neck, which adds interest, and my jewelry ranges from Victorian to Art Deco to 1950s kitsch. To make the look a little more modern, I’ll add a trendy item such as a hoodie.

Effortless is it not. I put a fair amount of thought into what I wear but that’s what makes fashion fun for me.

 

 

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That’s me sporting my custom-made shirtwaist dress by Theresa LaQuey. Photo: James Young

Throwback Thursday. Originally posted on June 23, 2011.

Last October I had a brilliant idea while strolling Fabric Row in Philadelphia. Why not buy some fabric to take home and have a couple of dresses made? What a perfect memento of my visit to Philly.

So that’s what I did. I perused the family run shop Maxie’s Daughter on South 4th Street and chose two cotton fabrics – one with a violet color print and the other a brown/orange print. I knew I wanted shirtwaist dresses I could wear with sandals in the spring/summer and with tights in the autumn.

The middle-aged salesladies with frosted updos and South Philly accents seemed more serious about the upcoming baseball playoffs than fabric. “We’re gonna beat you,” they teased. “OK,” I said. “I have no problem with that.”  Heck, I was a San Francisco visitor with absolutely no attachment to ballgames, I wasn’t going to argue with Phillies fans.

When I returned home, designer Theresa LaQuey sketched a retro shirtwaist dress with buttons down the front and a knee-length hem (very vintage nurses uniform). A few months later, voila … I had dresses that are well made and fit to a T.

Every time I wear them I think of my visit to Philly and those serious Phillies fans. Now, those are dresses with a story.

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This is a suede coat in maroon from 1970. Suede was really popular back then, used for coats, vests, and handbags.

I love the color and the trim fit makes it super chic. The details are sharp – note the tucked shoulders and wide lapels in a contracting neutral color.

The coat is paired with what was called at the time, decorated denim. It was the done thing to piece together various denim swatches creating a new look. Beads, patches, and embroidery were also used. The pant leg hems are left raw, which is a trend happening today, as is decorated denim but we’re calling it embellished.

One of the aspects of fashion that I’m attracted to in this era is the use of vintage. There was a mixing up of styles from past decades including the 1920s, as we see here with the cloche hat. I like the creativity and uniqueness of combining modern with vintage.

Come back tomorrow for another favorite look from The Summer of Love Experience: Art, Fashion, and Rock & Roll.

 

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Miss Rosie Lea. Photo: David Morley.

Vintage style is timeless, feminine and completely open to your own interpretation. It celebrates women of all ages, shapes and sizes in a way that fashion houses just don’t.

– Miss Rosie Lea, British vintage model.

This quote is from an article by Miss Lea in Vintage Life magazine, October 2016.

Well put! But I would add that it’s a good idea to mix vintage up a bit. By combining eras and even adding a touch of modern we create more interest and keep it fresh for a truly timeless look.

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Ms. Ross is the daughter of singer and style icon Diana Ross.

I’ve been a shopper and vintage collector for years. I’m big on wearing clothes multiple times. I was taught as a young girl that you work hard for your money and there’s nothing wrong with spending it on beautiful things if you’re going to cherish them, take care of them and wear them lots.

– Tracee Ellis Ross, former fashion model and current actress on the television show Black-ish.

In 2016 Ms. Ross was the first African-American woman in 30 years to be nominated for an Emmy award in the category of best leading actress in a comedy. She didn’t win but I think we’ll see her again in the award lineup.

 

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