A place to find about styles of vintage clothing from the 1940's to the ‘80's and ethnic and art-to-wear fashion. Enjoy the aura that dressing in vintage clothing and jewelry will create.

Monday, December 20, 2010

First lady Michelle Obama, in a 1950 Norman Norell , and her mother, Marian Robinson, joined some Santa's helpers (Manuel Balce Centa)

The Huffington Post on 12/20/2010 report that our First Lady made Fashion headlines by wearing a vintage cocktail gown to the "Christmas in Washington" Concert which aired on TNT on 12/20/2010. It is believed to be the first time that a first lady  has appeared in a vintage gown.

The 1950's black lace dress had a square neckline,sweeping full skirt and was created by Norman Norell, a top American Fashion designer who died in 1972. Ms. Obama purchased the gown from  New York Vintage in Manhattan, a high-end store for couture clothing.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Audrey Hepburn: an elegant spirit

There is a new book out about Audrey Hepburn: an elegant spirit by Sean Hepburn Ferrer.
Mr ferrer is Audrey Hepburn's son with actor Mel Ferrer. There are 100 photo of Audrey that has not been seen before by her admirers. There are movie-related photos, family pictures and the children she met in her work with UNICEF. Ferrer will contribute proceeds from the book to the Audrey Hepburn Children's Fund.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Fall’s Best Looks

Now is the time to check out your vintage closet, favorite vintage on-line store, or your favorite vintage shop in your home town to find the best looks for fall. The runway designers are bringing back the tried and true looks for this fall. So it’s time to go vintage hunting!

Look for

  • A camel coat
  • Trouser suit
  • The new grey is army-issue khaki
  • Feathers and lace
  • Understated suits, sweaters and simple cover-ups
  • Tabards
  • A-line tunics
  • Stripped-down leathers
  • 1950s skirts that emphasize the waists of their wearers and ladylike skirts worn by June Cleaver
  • Long hair fur stoles, jackets and vests. The good news for those who prefer not to wear the real thing is that fake furs are just as hot as vest, short jackets and long coats for this season. If just a hint of fur will satisfy you, there are chunky knit sweaters with fur or a scarf edged in fur.





Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Items lurking in your closet that just gotta go……………………

No matter how much you think that love any of these things; it is time to part company. They make you look frumpy. And forget about keeping them for stay at home time. This is a new fashion season and it is time to examine what’s hiding in your closet. Do you have a fashion mistake lurking in the dark waiting to come out and snicker at you? Do you have horribly dated items in the closet that need to go and I am not talking about true vintage items? Do you just need more space for this season? It’s time to purge.

Do you have?

  • Holiday sweaters with the cutest bears, reindeers or Santas, pumpkins, bumblebees or bunnies? Out, Out, they go…
  • Grandma necklaces showing everyone how many grandchildren you have. It not a fashion statement, your grand children are not jewelry.
  • Did you go on vacation and came back with the souvenir T-shirt? Or do you have T-Shirts with funny sayings. Shame on you for wasting your money.
  • Overalls. Have your started farming?? If not then out they go!
  • Jeans that don’t fit are painful to wear, acid washed or ripped. Their time is at the end.
  • Muumuus. Unless you are living in the South Seas, Muumuus are not fashionable. Donate them to Goodwill.
  • Penny loafers. Keep if you are still in elementary school then think twice before keeping the penny loafers. Otherwise let them walk out of your life
  • Oversized blazers. Get rid of them they make you look overweight.
  • Mommy Robes. If you have more them one then toss them. It is okay to keep one for when you want to frump out in private.
  • Granny undies. You know the ones that are stretched out and baggy. Remember what your mother always wear clean underwear in case of an accident. But add to your Mom’s statement always wear clean sexy underwear.
  • Short shorts. Oh please unless you are a size zero and gloriously tanned, and young, give it up.
  • Cargo pants. No one needs that many pockets. That is why the fashion goddess made handbags.
  • Stockings with reinforced toes. Have a pampering pedicure and get the sheer stockings.
  • 3 piece suits with vests. I know the 80’s are back in style but it was not the greatest fashion statement in the 80’s. A woman needs to look feminine not corporate.
  • Backpacks. No woman should wear a backpack during a regular day. The only time you should use a backpack is when you are hiking, camping, or mountain climbing. Ditch them for everyday.

So how fast can you get them out of your dresser draws and closets and on their way to Salvation Army, Goodwill, or any local Charity thrift store? Oh, don’t forget to get a receipt for tax purposes.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Yves Saint Laurent Exhibition: Where Genius meets Haute Couture

Thanks to France’s first lady and former model, Madame Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, and in association with the Foundation Pierre Bergé-Yves Saint Laurent; the YSL exhibition ( http://www.yslretrospective.com/)   is the first retrospective of Yves Saint Laurent’s 44-year long reign in fashion.

The exhibit consists of over 300 haute couture and prêt-à-porter models, with a selection of unique pictures, sketches, and films making this one of the finest the exhibition in fashion history. The exhibition takes you through forty years of wearable art that empowered women with bold, self-confidence and an unapologetic sense of sensual freedom. He was known as the “Prince of Fashion,” but he was the king when it came to haute couture.

The exhibit opened in March, but there is a two-and-a-half hour wait even if you have your ticket. The exhibit will be there until August if you care to jet over to Paris to see it. Whether you’re a lover of fashion, film, or art, or whether you just appreciate the beautiful things in life; Yves Saint Laurent was able to inspire, ignite, and titillate for over 40 years through his unique and masterful fashion creations.

Bruni-Sarkozy, who wore and modeled his creations wrote, “He created an inspired, vivid universe that overturned conventions and conformity. With Saint Laurent, art became fashion — and fashion an art.”

The exhibit begins with his career with Dior in 1958, where in his first year as art director, he was able to make Dior’s iconic “new look” appear old fashioned by contrast with his liberating “Trapeze” collection. A replica of his studio is there with original furniture on loan. It is here you see his love affair with art and the mutually beneficial relationship they shared: He took inspiration from the great masters of art, while giving back masterpieces of his own art to the world.

Mondrian, Picasso, Matisse, Van Gogh, were not his only inspirations. His bold exotic collections inspired by faraway lands turns the exhibit into a section from a museum of the ages. The famous Mondrian shift dress that was featured on the cover of Vogue in 1965 and on the wish lists of girls from Paris to India, stands in the corner of this haute couture room, next to his first African collection (1967) and his “Lalanne” dresses that are abayas with head scarves, embellished with a bust and waist sculpture of galvanized copper (1969) and inspired by his favorite vacation spot, Morocco.

Saint Laurent was able to change fashion and set trends. For Fall-Winter 1965 Saint Laurent created a line of Piet Mondrian and Poliakoff inspired dresses. In an interview regarding his collection, the designer said he was flipping through a book of Mondrian when he predicted 1965 fashion. “I suddenly realized that dresses should no longer be composed of lines, but of colors. I realized that we had to stop conceiving of a garment as sculpture and that, on the contrary, we had to view it as mobile,” said Saint Laurent.

This ability to revolutionize fashion was apparent in his Le Smoking collection. This collection takes the male tuxedo and reinterprets it for the female form. This forever altered the conventions of formal eveningwear by introducing pants into the female wardrobe and blurring the lines of gender. . Saint Laurent often played with the male evening suit and his iconic safari jacket of 1966 that was seductively redesigned from classic safari attire.

One section of the exhibit is devoted to the wardrobe of actress Catherine Deneuve, who wore Yves Saint Laurent religiously, both on and off screen. Deneuve was even the face of his perfume, “Opium”. Luis Bruñel’s provocative film, “Belle de Jour,” (1966) showcased his flair for sophisticated bourgeois fashion with the precise tailoring of his envy-inducing black ciré trench coat.
You will see ornate evening gowns that range all the way to his last collection in 2002 showing his muses of Hollywood glamour (Marylyn Monroe), European sophistication (Duchess of Windsor) and American androgyny (Marlene Dietrich and Lauren Bacall).

All of his creations come alive and the movement is apparent on the still, white mannequins. By the end of the fifteen-room exhibition, you will become enchanted by opulent craftsmanship and innovative foresight of probably one of the most talented designer/artist who has ever lived. From tunics and pea coats, to jumpsuits and tuxedos, he is the man behind every cut or sketch in fashion. Yves Saint-Laurent once famously stated, “I’ve always had the highest of respect for this profession, which isn’t an art form per se, but which needs an artist in order for it to exist.”

Please visit http://www.yslretrospective.com/ to soak up all of the vintage glamour if you can’t jump on the next jet to Paris. It is a trip that you will not want to miss if you love vintage clothing and excellent craftsmanship and innovative vision

Friday, June 18, 2010

The Vintage Bride

Unlike a good cocktail dress, which is designed to be a workhorse in a woman’s wardrobe, a white or cream-colored wedding dress need only dazzle its audience one time only unless, it's a pre-owned wedding dress, either passed down from a beloved relative or picked up at auction or from a favorite vintage shop.

At the beginning of the 20th century, with the Belle  Epoque in full swing, Edwardian brides were synced into tight corsets, which were covered with wedding dresses made out of chiffon, lace, and taffeta. But by World War I, the practice of squeezing women into hourglass shapes was giving way to more natural looks. After the war, wedding dress hemlines had crept far enough off the ground to reveal a bride’s ankle.

Hemlines continued to rise throughout the 1920s, producing wedding dresses that were relatively revealing in the front with a flowing train in the back. Dresses got long again in the ’30s, were generally straight, and for the first time were equipped with a detachable train, which allowed a bride to take her solemn walk down the aisle but then cut a rug on the dance floor after.

The 1940s was a crazy decade when it came to fashion, and wedding dresses were no exception. During the war years, wedding gowns followed the overall trend of boxy, broad shouldered, military silhouettes. By the late ’40s, though, all bets were off as miles of previously rationed fabrics were lavished on wedding dresses and gowns. In some cases, wedding dresses were even made from silk salvaged from surplus parachutes.

Wedding dresses returned to full femininity again in the 1950s, with tight waists and full skirts below. Sleeve styles ranged from full length to almost none at all, while necks could be left open or collared. These varied looks remained consistent into the next decade, except for those adventurous brides who chose to be married in short numbers that ended well above their knees. By the 1970s, some women dispensed with the wedding dress altogether, trading tradition for the sophisticated look of an Yves Saint Laurent white tuxedo-jacket suit.

After the restrained outlines of the previous decade, every bride now wanted a fairytale crinoline and tiara. So 1980s ushered in a jumble of styles, as brides moved on from the decade just past. Gone was the structural support of petticoats, replaced by skirts that fell freely around the feet. After Princess Diana's wedding, every bride had to have full skirts gathered to the waist, and big sleeves to the elbow, with flounces and bows and lace embellishments. There was a surge in popularity for taffeta and silk with detailed hand-stitching, puffy sleeves and shoulder pads playing off the big-haired  girlygirl glamour of the day. Shoulders eventually softened, and features such as keyhole backs closed with pearl strands and drop dangles added drama.

Her flowers signaled a return of the big bouquet, with trailing greenery. Then the next royal wedding modified the look to suit a fuller figure, with a low waistline, pointed at front and back, and flare as well as gather in her satin skirts, other brides soon followed her, and set the style that was to prevail for the next few years.


Moving beyond the ornate ostentation's look of the ‘80s, brides embraced the understated, less-is-more styles of Vera Wang and her ilk. Rich brocade fabrics in intricate, scrolling patterns and applied embroidery and beading,on a fairly stiffly sculpted satin corseted bodice were popular throughout the decade. As the decade progressed, a variety of skirt choices became available. The wide skirt stayed popular, but then a variant which had a very dropped waist, to below the hip, and then flared, was often seen. Gradually, more fluid materials began to appear alongside the stiffly appliqued fabrics, and narrower profiles returned. As the nineties progressed, shift dresses were introduced in day wear fashions, often made by layering a fine fabric over a lining for an ethereal effect, and this trend soon appeared on the bridal scene too.

2001 and beyond

Modern brides said good-bye to tradition and walked down the aisle in wedding gowns that reflect their own particular passion, vision, and personality - from ornate designer dresses to a something informal. As wedding fashion continues to evolve separately from the general vogue, brides have felt freer to allow full rein for their imaginations, and some wedding parties are not so much in "best" dress as fancy dress, as themed and fantasy costumes are the order of the day. Brides have gone black or gold, cocktail or sundress, traditional or even trouser suit. The modern bride wears what they want to look beautiful and feel comfortable on their big day.

The white wedding gown is more tradition than virtue, though even these traditions are blurring with the rise of the global community. With women marrying later and more independent, the 21st century bride is eclectically assuming her own custom look and feel. The color of the wedding gowns are still mostly white, eggshell, ecru and ivory,but colored wedding gowns are making a comeback.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Style, Glamour & Elegance

Whatever happened to style?
Where has glamour gone?
What happened to elegance?
It was not long ago that American women had it all!
They looked like a million bucks.
It was expected and people noticed you.
You turned heads. You had cachet.

It is now the time to do it again.
We need to wear the same designs that put the American woman in the spotlight.
It is time to turn the sidewalks and office aisles into our own personal runway.
The goal is to wear the things that are timeless, functional, and beautiful.

To rediscover what it feels like to walk down the street and have heads turn
And to have eyes follow you’re every movement as you walk
Confidence, pride and style is every woman’s right.

It is time once again to walk in style.
Be the woman that you were met to be.
So shop vintage!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

What is Vintage? What is Couture? What is vintage inspired? What is retro?

The terms - vintage and couture has become diluted over the years especially since the dawn of internet selling and the recent popularity of vintage clothing.

So let’s define what these terms really mean...
Vintage Clothing is clothing that is at least 25 years old. So in the 2010 for clothing to vintage is must have been manufactured before 1985. Anything garment manufactured after 1985 is pre-owned, pre-loved or just plain used. Not all old clothing needs to be sold as vintage.
Couture was once applied only to the haute couture items created under the strict rules of the Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture in Paris. The requirements stated that couture must be made-to-order for a private client and include several fittings.

One of the modern uses of the term couture is when reputable vintage dealers use it as a way to highlight items that have been constructed (usually by hand) with meticulous quality and detail. When buying vintage couture or couture, remember that fashion designers have lines of clothing that are manufactured as ready to wear (RTW). The vintage couture designer RTW is still a valuable garment and something to be proud to own. Most of the vintage couture listed on vintage clothing websites are vintage RTW.

Currently, the label “Vintage” is now being applied to brand new merchandise in many retail stores. Fashion brands are incorporating the word into their names even though their items aren't authentic vintage, just vintage-inspired.

Retro Clothing is the wearing of styles in the past. This way of dressing includes garments and accessories that are characteristic of the past. The garments are generally made new with vintage patterns. Also, retro clothing can be used in an exaggerated way such as rockabilly style or pinup girl style of dressing.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Spring fashion is beginning to roll in with the spring weather. Designers recently took to the runways to display their visions of trendy for the upcoming months. The prominent theme of Spring 2010: Classic Femininity.

This spring is a return to simple, clean lines and classic shapes. Fashion designers are blending the best of the ‘50s with the boldest of the ‘80s therefore creating some striking silhouettes.

Neutrals are taking center-stage, and the styling looks simple at first glance but the subtle details are going to make all the difference. The Structure is key. White jean shorts are out, but white shorts with a hem or button detail are perfect when topped off with creams, light grays, or beige button-downs and checked patterns floated down the runways with white skirts and simple cardigans.

This spring...girly is the way to go. Even masculine pieces such as military-style jackets are paired with flirty skirts or tailored pants. The ripped jeans and textured tights of last year are out of style. Timeless fashion pieces that your grandmother would have been proud of. If classic is not your preference then try bold prints, intricate fabrics and blazingly bright colors to brighten the most austere outfits.

The new trends have the incredible versatility for bold tops can be made more demure by pairing with a simple skirt; structured jackets are softened by organic inspired shirts and simple jeans. The best news, thanks to a few vintage treasures that you find from a vintage clothing shop or your favorite vintage clothing web site can make your entire spring wardrobe is financially feasible.. Be amazed at how easy it can be to piece together astonishingly cutting-edge outfits that express their individual styles with the members of VFG(Vintage Fashion Guild).

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Collage of Mannequins

Everthing Mannequin
 I collect mannequins for my vintage clothing display. Yesterday, I was playing around with polyvore and came up with this collage of digiial images about mannequins. Collecting virtual mannequins does really cut down on the need for physical storage space. Unfortunately it does nothing for the visual and tacile experience.But is was fun doing the collage.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Take the vintage challenge and do it well!

Those who opt for the vintage style should be ready for the astonished eyes. Many people believe that the use of vintage clothing requires courage but I believe it is only a matter of attitude. You can include vintage items in your everyday wardrobe and add elegance to your daily appearance.

To begin enjoyable and successful, try to make small changes to your wardrobe so you do not look like a time machine. You can wear vintage clothing in a contemporary style. The selection of your look can be the best part and can become your true art. A combination of modern and ancient can be very elegant. There are many vintage clothes and accessories to choose from.

By focusing your image in general, you can adopt a certain style. Know the characteristics of the vintage style that you want to wear. If you do not feel knowledgeable about the style do research. Look at old movies in the era that you favor or visit www.vintagefashion guild.org on the web.  Be inspired by fashion icons and those who are already "pro" vintage fashion like Kate Moss and Sandra Bullock. Remember current fashion designers use the vintage designer such as Chanel, Poiret, and Vionnet as inspiration

However, you can combine your personal style with some real chic accessories such as handbags, belts and scarves. Try a pair of jeans or trousers with a bow blouse or dress with a modern vintage leather belt can be a good option. When pairing these items correctly; a colorful dress can be used successfully with a pair of this year's gladiator sandals.

The final step is to find that vintage piece to purchase. This is probably the most exciting process. You can shop your grandmother's attic, a local vintage shop in your area, or with any of the vintage clothing internet dealers that are members of the Vintage Fashion Guild.

Remember these garments  know history so use them as pieces of your history. Good luck Vintage Hunter!


Vintage Diva

Tuesday, February 2, 2010


This is a great fashion season this winter. I love anything to do with the 1940’s – big shoulders, pencil skirts, crêpe dresses, floor-length Adrian gowns, platform shoes, and costume jewelry.
It suits me since fashion has given full rein to the “retro” look this year. If you’re in the vintage age bracket and know what I’m talking about, start smiling because the 1940’s are back – and favoring grown-ups before girls.
In the 1940’s, Hollywood and fashion designers knew that they had to keep confidence of a woman who had the responsibilities of working, single-handedly providing for children while men served their country overseas, and who still cared about looking groomed and beautiful.
Look to the design houses of Lanvin, Prada, Dries Van Noten, and Hermès. Between them, they cover all the screen-siren possibilities, from tailored, tweedy or hounds tooth suits and coats to glamorous evening gowns that the movies goddesses like Rita Hayworth and Ingrid Bergman would have worn.
Some the designs are almost identical to the originals which gives us license to rummage in the attic for the stashed-away Forties fashions of our mothers and grandmothers. There are many ways of reviving pencil skirts with a satin blouse dressed up with ropes of pearls and sheer black stockings rather than opaque, or with a tight-fitting sweater and matching cuffs on either wrist.
Under a jacket or a trench coat, with platform shoes, leather gloves, a pair of Forties-style sunglasses, and a slick of red lipstick. This look delivers a zinging adult retort to clothing that young girls are wearing from the local shopping mall. So when fashion veers your way once in a blue moon, grab it with both hands.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Vintage Stores on Etsy

Don't forget to shop at vintage clothing sellers on ETSY.
Fashion Chic Clothing
Bliss Vintage
Vintage Land
Wizard Clothing
Thrift Store Mafia
Spectacle Vintage
Latte Kitty
One Girl's Trash
Magoo Vintage
Vintage Mafia
Foo Foo Vintage
Fancy Pants and More

Fight Vintage Funk & Stuck Zippers

Buying vintage clothes is one of the best ways to find pieces with style and quality for far less than you'd pay today. But often they have that tell-tale smell emitting from them. The fix for that vintage funk is a lot closer than you think. "All you have to do is mix one part vodka with two parts water in a spray bottle," says Janie Bryant, the costume designer for Mad Men. "It works every time—that's the power of vodka for you." From www.valetmag.com

A stuck zipper will cause you unnecessary frustration with vintage clothes. Take some lip balm and run it along the teeth, above and below the slider. Then pull it up and quickly down. No Chapstick? Rub the tip of a No.2 pencil on the track.
From www.valetmag.com

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Fashion Top 7 Vintage Dress Tips for 2010

No 1. Every woman should have a fabulous cocktail dress on hand.
This Cocktail Dress is Indispensable Ninety Years Later. This Dress very fashionable and Flappers formal-casual outfit wear.
No 2. Use inexpensive costume jewelry to elevate an outfit.
Coco Chanel & her rival Elsa Schiaparelli both introduced lines of ornate, affordable faux baubles at the start of the decade. This vivid array of bangles can add a fashionable spark of personality to your closet basics.
No 3. A strong shoulder begets a smaller waistline.
The padded shoulders and puff sleeves favored by movie star Joan Crawford, and years later by Dynasty’s Joan Collins.
No 4. Invest in a structured, ladylike handbag.
Grace Kelly was photographed carrying the boxy style to shield her pregnancy from the paparazzi, sparking a craze for the newly christened “Kelly bag.”
No 5. Recharge your look with bold prints.
The Age of Aquarius was all about rebelling against the prim and pastel styles of the 50s. Psychedelic music, free love, and pop art went hand in hand with the graphic patterns and far-out colors of the time.
No 6. Give yourself a vertical―yet manageable―boost with a platform shoe.
The platform was around in the 30s and 40s, but it wasn’t until decades later that this style, characterized by a thick sole that offers height without the discomfort of spike heels, became the symbol of an era.
No 7. Leggings aren’t just for dance class.
Movies such as Flash dance and Fame glorified the lives of dancers and prompted a fad to get physical.