November 28, 2013

Flickr Favourites: November 28, 2013

{Thanksgiving Cheer ~ The Paper Doll}

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{Jay's of Regent Street advertisement ~ totallymystified}

{Furry Friends ~ hanthomas}

{Campanha publicitária Feno de Portugal ~ Biblioteca de Arte-Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian}

{B&W/Duotone Ads, 1953 ~ alsis35}

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{Harvest ~ Georgia George}

{Fredric Varady ~ oldcarguy41}

{1940s Coca-Cola Thanksgiving advertisement ~ bergholm}

{Strand of flower fairy lights ~ Holly Pickering}

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{Western Family, 1956 ~ alsis35}

{All images above are from Flickr. To learn more about a specific image, please click on its title to be taken to its respective Flickr page.}

♥ ♥ ♥

Thanksgiving falls late in the month for my wonderful neighbours to the south (much as our own Thanksgiving did here in Canada last month, making an appearance on October 14th, the furthest into the year it can ever be, as it falls on the second Monday in October), less than a month away from Christmas. Though, like many I'm sure, my mind is already racing with thoughts of of gingerbread men, holiday card lists, tinsel decked trees and stockings hung by the chimney with care, right here and now, like those in the US, I'm stopping to give thanks and appreciate the bounty of autumn while this beautiful season is still here.

Faster than Santa taking off from the North Pole, it will be winter again, and while the weather here has already mimicked it numerous times over the past few weeks, there are still a few lingering elements of fall, not the least of which is the seasonal produce that is so celebrated today. I'm grateful for each late season apple, pumpkin, and pear, as well as those foods - hearty root vegetables, for example - of the coming season that are starting to appear once more. They all factor into my feasts - be they quick snacks or dinner for ten - that appear, generally piping hot from the oven - during the final days of November.

The palette outside is tinged with dampness and sallow light, it hasn't faded to the degree of late January, but it's a far cry from mid-September, and soon it will be all but hidden under a a duvet of thick Canadian snow. November, a month that I actually quite like, is dark, but not bleak. It turns ones thoughts to the long season of chilliness ahead, yet still finds ways to remind us periodically that it is, every last day of it, wholly a part of fall - and one that is a reason to be thankful unto itself.

From the bottom of my heart, my dear friends, I wish all those celebrating the togetherness, delicious riches, and beauty of Thanksgiving a truly resplendent holiday, and hope that one and all the world over enjoy a beautiful last few days of the final full month of autumn.

November 26, 2013

A charming vintage leaf applique skirt, a subtle Mad Men vibe, and plenty of chilly autumn wind

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Outfit details

Brown velvet Frank Palma vintage hat: etsy seller Nostalgia Vintage
Gold toned swirl earrings: Dollar store (ages ago)
Faux fur trimmed brown cardigan: Sears
Vintage plastic maple leaf brooch: Gift from a dear vintage loving friend ♥
Vintage wooden bead necklace: Thrifted (Salvation Army)
Rust orange hued knit shell: eBay
NOS 1970s autumn leaf applique skirt: etsy seller
1950s/60s golden-orange gloves: eBay
1950s corduroy bucket purse: etsy seller
Rue 23 Vintage Clothing
Nude seamed stockings: eBay
Dark brown faux alligator heels:
Pipsqueaks and Damsels Consignment Store
Lip colour: Clinique Raspberry Glace

Photography by
Antonio Cangiano

Autumn is typically a rather short lived creature around these parts. As such, I strive to sport its palette as much as possible while its here. Not content with merely one brown and orange outfit this season (or even this month - see this post from a couple weeks ago for my first), I brought out the big guns, to speak, recently with one of my favourite novelty skirts.

Much like my cute watermelon slice skirt, this fabulously fun autumn leaf applique number hails from the 1970s, but it's a snap to style in a 1940s, 50s, or 60s direction, if desired. Partnering it with a cozy faux fur trimmed cardigan, orange knit shell, a long strand of vintage wooden beads, plus a brown velvet vintage hat (quite possibly last seen on the blog here, if memory serves me right), orange vintage gloves, and my beloved 1950s corduroy bucket bag, I took it in a direction that I would say channels the sartorial spirit of the late 50s/early 60s.

Poor weather, from rain to fog, and oodles of wind has been present through a decent chunk of this fall, which these days, is much more akin to winter. Wind, something most of us who take photos outdoors contend with at least some of the time, was out in full force on the day we grabbed these snaps downs at Skaha Park here in Penticton. Fortunately, unlike during some of our past gale filled shoots (such as this one), my hat stayed put this time around.

When I was uploading and sorting through these photos, I was stuck by how something in this ensemble reminded me a bit of the chic outfits worn by department store head Rachel Menken, one of Don Draper's paramours from the first season of Mad Men. I'd say it’s a bit more fanciful that her look, but there's something about the general lines and even the colour palette that made me think of her to a certain degree. Do you see it, too?

As we sit here, a day less than a month away from Christmas, I already feel a bit nostalgic for the bright, early, sun-kissed afternoons of autumn, of which we had corporately few in 2013. Fall's palette is still coming out to play when I get dressed, but I feel the pull towards my usual winter hues - black, grey, navy blue, red and purple, in particular - coming in strongly on its heels.

I'm not ready to suit up like jolly old Saint Nick quite yet though, and this week as my dear friends in the States celebrate their joyfully lovely day of thanks on Thursday, I'll be keeping fall's spirit alive a little longer in looks such as these, which are certainly something on the fashion front that I feel especially grateful for each year.

This ensemble would look out of place on the fresh, sparklingly new days of April or when the temperatures were soaring past 100F in late July. Right here, right now however, with a few weeks still to go before Christmas and a handful of resilient leaves clinging steadfastly to their branches for a little longer, it's as perfectly well suited to autumn as harvest moons, Indian corn, and pumpkin pie, and I'm going to delight in every last earthy palette hued moment of it.

November 24, 2013

The world needs V&Oak Magazine and so do you!

A little earlier this year, I had the profound honour of being featured in not one, but two different articles pertaining to mid-century fashion in V&Oak magazine's premier print edition. Though I've appeared in numerous online magazines over the years, this was my first time being featured in a print publication, and the experience truly stands out as one of the best and most exciting highlights of my blogging (and vintage loving) life so far.

One need only spend a few moments flipping through an issue of V&Oak or bopping around on their website to understand that this magazine is a cut above the vast majority of its peers. I say that completely devoid of any kind of bias, because of my appearance in their marvelous Fall/Winter 2013 edition. No, my feelings would resonate just as deeply whether or not such was the case.

You see, V&Oak is a magazine that falls squarely in line with my own personal style aesthetics and beliefs when it comes to how one should approach dressing, and by extension, life itself. As I touched on earlier this month in the post I am authentic to my soul, I believe firmly in the importance of rocking, owning, and being proud of one's unique style voice.

I don't subscribe to the theory that there is only one way (aka, highly period accurate) to wear vintage, nor that one need ever follow trends (unless they want to), or that you have to follow in line with the bulk of the population when it comes to how you dress or live your life. We are so incredibly blessed to each be born unique - why would you want to merely blend into the crowd, when you could, if only in a small way, standout and expressive your creativity through your wardrobe choices?

V&Oak stands for "vintage and one and a kind", a description which could very well be used to sum up my wardrobe in its entirety, along with those of many of you as well. This magazine puts an emphasis on originality, individualism, and freedom of style, while embracing the past, but not becoming a complete slave to it.

Far from simply discussing fashion, this magazine partnered classic lines from Huckleberry Finn with one of their outfit spreads, interviewed a modern photographer who does vintage themed boudoir style shoots, explored topics pertaining to vintage weddings and home decor, gave a fair handed amount of page space to multiple decades (from the 1920s right on up to the 1980s), interviewed multiple bloggers, authors, business people, and creative folks from around the world, and made me feel, after just a few pages in, as though I was sitting around on a comfy couch having a great conversation with some of the brightest, most inspiringly dressed friends a gal could ever ask for.

Miles away from the many dime a dozen modern glossy mags, and even a few of the indie publications out there, V&Oak felt fresh and new, yet not so avant-garde as to risk not hitting its target scarcely on the mark.

This magazine will likely appeal as much to fashionistas as it will those who beat squarely to their own style drum. It is well laid out, beautifully photographed, engagingly written, and positively lovely through and through. It's important for those of us whose fashion choices deviate from the so-called standard norm to feel like there are publications out there that speak to us, highlight brands and styles we enjoy, and which help us discover and learn more about topics that matter to us in the process.

V&Oak does all that, and more. It is a vibrant, exciting, beautiful new publication, and one which I firmly believe the fashion sphere, and the world as a whole, is better off because of.

If your interest in V&Oak has been piqued, and I do hope it has, I'm delighted to give one lucky winner the chance to win a one year subscription to V&Oak magazine (which will include the 1st edition - in which yours truly appears), constituting two issues in total (the magazine is currently published twice a year).

♥ ♥ ♥

How to enter:

There are seven possible ways for you to enter this giveaway, the more of them that you do, the greater your odds of winning will be.

1. Leave a comment telling me one of the reasons why you love your own unique look (be it vintage or otherwise).

2. Follow V&Oak on 

3. Tweet about this giveaway on Twitter, including a @VandOAK and the hashtag #winvandoak to win your tweet.

3. Sign up for 
V&Oak newsletter (scroll down near the bottom right hand side of the page to do so).

4. Like V&Oak on Facebook

5. Like Chronically Vintage on Facebook.

6. Post about this giveaway on

7. Post about this giveaway, including a link to this Chronically Vintage post, as well as V&Oak’s website, on your own blog. 

Please make sure to leave a separate comment specifying each of the ways in which you entered this giveaway, so as to increase your odds of winning.

Giveaway details

This giveaway is for a one year subscription (two editions) of V&Oak magazine, which will be mailed directly to you from the fine folks at V&Oak themselves. It it open to contestants from around the world, and will run from between today's date and Sunday December 1, 2013. The lucky winner will be drawn using a random number generator and contacted by me shortly thereafter (and possibly announced on the blog, too). Please email me if you have any questions about this giveaway.

♥ ♥ ♥

It's been several weeks now, since I first saw my own face smiling up at me from two articles in the inaugural print edition of V&Oak, and longer still since I was interviewed (including by the thoroughly wonderful Janine Rudkins from Lesley's Girls Vintage) for it, and still my feet have yet to come quite back down to earth entirely.

There are certain firsts in life that stay with your forever, especially if they're not something that most people get to experience - a camp in which I would place appearing in a glossy fashion magazine squarely into. And this was one of those amazing firsts for me. I truly want to thank V&Oak for including me in their premier print edition, and for recognizing my blog and my personal style as jiving with their ethos and vision.

I've always been a bit of a square vintage peg in a world of round holes, so to speak, and it means an incredible amount to me to know that not only are there others out there like myself, but that we have a magazine that captures the spirit and splendor of rocking a vintage and one of a kind wardrobe and life every day in countless wonderful ways to read now twice a year.

November 22, 2013

Vintage Fashionista Friday: November 22, 2013

Vintage Fashionista Friday blog graphic for Chronically Vintage photo VintagefashionistaChronicallyVintag.png
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{This 1950s topper created by Walkers Millinery and Dress Salon of Dallas is an enchantingly unique beauty teaming with forest ferns and various harvest hued flora, simply perfect for wearing to any Thanksgiving get-together. $35.00 from etsy seller Dalena Vintage.}

{Sport the season's palette on your lobes wherever you go with these glamorously lovely gold toned vintage clip-on earrings featuring mixed shaped and hued rhinestones. $20.00 from etsy seller Bloomers & Frocks.}

{Even if you still have oodles of gentle autumn sunlight where you live, chances are the temps are dropping rather quickly and a sturdy, beautiful winter coat will soon - if it isn't already - become a must. This luxuriously elegant cream 1950s/60s number would go superbly with a wide range of different ensembles (it just begs to be partnered with a great little vintage cocktail dress to me) straight on to springer's toasty return. Fits up to a 45" bust. $85.00 from etsy seller Little Netties Vintage.}

{Every wardrobe needs at least a few standout pieces of jewelry, and this stunning 1930s era art deco necklace featuring an amber glass filigree pendant is precisely one such item. Timeless, bewitching, and utterly gorgeous. $62.00 from etsy seller Maejean Vintage.}

{This sweet, sophisticated, wonderfully seasonally appropriate 1950s dress stole my heart. From the radiant cranberry hue to the floral applique on the bodice, it's precisely the kind of vintage garment I cannot get enough during the fall - or any time of the year! $58.00 from etsy seller Mustang Annee's Vintage.}

{Just because August is a distant memory already doesn't mean you have to hang up your beloved straw handbags. On the contrary, those in warm shades such as this absolutely lovely 1940s Italian Josef purse, that call to mind fields of autumn wheat, are especially well suited to the harvest season, playing particularly well with all manner of oranges, reds, browns, creams, and mossy greens, to name but a few. $52.00 from etsy seller High Point Farms 2010.}

{Inject a hearty dose of Thanksgiving inspired charm into your beauty routine with this timelessly pretty handmade guest soap set featuring ears of Indian corn, acorns and owls. $7.00 per set from etsy seller The Charming Frog.}

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{Even the fallen leaves underfoot will be in awe of the beauty and ladylike chicness of these resplendent red leather 1940s peep-toe ankle strap heels. Fits approximately a modern ladies size 7.5. $120.00 from Blue Vintage Velvet.}

We Canadians tucked into our roast turkey and mashed spuds last month on the 14th, but Thanksgiving is still to come for those in the US, and today my mind is once more on this beautiful celebration and the colour palette that accompanies it.

Specifically, I woke up and had visions of fall time Indian corn running through my head. The hues of these vibrant, often multi-coloured ears of corn - which are sometimes also called flint corn because of the fact that they have a rather hard outer layer on each kernel - are so incredibly evocative of the season.

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They mirror the earthy jewel toned leaves that come tumbling to the ground all autumn long, while also reminding of us of several shades that appear throughout autumn's plentiful harvest. They're rich, deep, and absolutely beautiful, and these colours seem especially well suited to one's Thanksgiving Day, or simply late fall, attire.

Be it January or July, or any month of the year, I love dressing in the hues and spirit of the season. Not for each and every outfit, of course, but a good many, and at no other point of the year do I find that such rings as true as it does for me during the fall months, when there is a limitless amount of natural beauty around. Golden sunsets, garnet apples, plump pumpkins shining under a layer of morning frost, fawn coloured foliage, and, yes, even Indian corn itself aplenty to inspire and guide as in the hues we opt to don.

I'm grateful for fall, for its exceedingly lovely palette, for the bridge between the extremes of summer and winter, for having the opportunity to feast and reflect on all that I'm blessed to have in my life, and to feel a powerful connection with the earth's bounty - a point which, especially for those who don't grow their own food or work in an industry related to such, it can be all too easy to slip away from in today's incredibly industrialized world.

Whether you feel pulled towards burgundy, amber, flax, rust, cocoa brown, muted greens, rabbit fur worthy grey, or midnight black, take a cue from our stylish vintage lass, Maisy (whose name, a Scottish variation of Margaret, is in this case at least, also inspired by none other than maize itself), and put together a fun, easy going, cozy ensemble of your favourite autumn hues.

Much like the Indian corn that's in the shops and farmer's markets right now, fall will not stick around forever (almost unbelievably, winter is one day shy of a month away from today) and that's all the more reason to deck yourself out in its majestic palette while it's still here.

November 21, 2013

Wearing a dress that has been in my family for no less than seven decades

Outfit details

Circa 1940s wide brimmed black hat with netting: etsy seller Vintage Toledo
Silver tone metal and glass stone drop earrings: Claire's
Circa 1950s/60s black Persian lamb's wool style coat: Yard sale find (blogged about
1930s/early 40s pink crepe dress with rhinestone detailing: Amazing gift from my cousin Sylvia
Circa 1940s brown gloves:
Jardin Antiques in Okanagan Falls
1950s/60s black handbag with floral needlework: etsy seller
St. Augustine Vintage
Black seamed stockings: eBay
T-strap suede peep-toe heels: Nine West
Lip colour: MAC Diva

Photography by
Antonio Cangiano

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This is a post with a past, or more precisely which came to be because of lives lived long before I came into existence. As vintage fashion lovers we wear the world's yesterdays, and for many of us, most, if not all of our vintage garments and accessories landed in our wardrobe by way of strangers - sellers and original clothing owners alike. Once in a while however, if we are exceedingly lucky, we may be blessed to receive the gift of a vintage item that one belonged to someone in our very own family.

While neither of my grandmas held onto their clothes from the mid-twentieth century, far away in a corner of the country I long desperately to visit myself (as I touched on recently here), tucked away lovingly, and completely unbeknownst to me until very recently, in an attic belonging to one of my first cousins once removed, Sylvia Burkhard, lay an assortment of vintage garments that had been in our family for decades.

Though I've never had the pleasure of meeting Sylvia in person, I know her and some of her siblings through my genealogy research and via Facebook, and when she found out that I lived for the past, she gathered up some of those pieces of vintage clothing, most of which I'd venture to guess hadn't been worn in many a year, and so incredibly sweetly sent them my way this year.

She let me know that it was okay to pass along those things which weren't to my taste or didn't fit, and that I did as gifts, to some of my very dearest fellow vintage adoring fans the world over. When the items that weren't my size or style had found new homes, I was left with a selection of several of the most wonderfully lovely late 1930s to early 1960s garments one could ever dream of receiving out of the blue from a relative.

Most of the items are dresses, of which the beautiful coral meets carnation pink late 1930s/early 40s frock pictured today is one of my very favourites. This dress is unlike any other presently in my closet, in terms of style, and I love it all the more because of that. I don't know which of my family members would have owned and sported it back in the day, but whomever she was, she had excellent taste.

Sylvia's parcel is the first and only time to date that I've ever received vintage clothing that belonged to a family member of mine (my maternal grandma once presented me a lovely little c. 1950s/60s opal pendant necklace of hers that I treasure to no end, but that was the only other vintage piece belonging to a relative that I'd been given). Even now, a few months after that package arrived (and brought me to tears of joy and gratitude as I opened it), I'm still in a bit of shock to be have been given the honour of preserving, and wearing, these wonderful yesteryear garments that once shared some of those aforementioned yesterdays with my very own relatives.

A dress like this is something of the star of the show unto itself, but that doesn't mean it need go accessory, or coat, less in the least. Instead of much in the way of jewelry, I partnered this elegant frock with an equally lovely 1950s/60s floral needlework handbag, which I was very kindly sent from awesome etsy seller Kara Pound's shop, St. Augustine Vintage.

I am smitten with this bag. It's larger than many vintage handbags, sturdily crafted, captivatingly pretty, and more than roomy enough to hold all of the modern day accoutrements most of us are keen to tote around with us when we're out and about. I really appreciate that Kara bestowed this gorgeous handbag on me, and am delighted to let you know that we'll soon be holding a giveaway for her etsy shop, so that can have the chance to add a treasure from St. Augustine Vintage to your old school wardrobe.

Did you know, that while I've worn suit jackets and blazers here over the years, this is the very first time I've sported a coat, let alone a winter weight one, here on the blog? It's true, and I rather love that for the premier of such an event, I sported none other than the awesome Persian lamb's wool-esque, fur trimmed coat that I purchased for a killer price from a local second hand clothing dealer last summer (which I chatted about in this post). Realistically, I think that this coat is from the early 60s, though there are elements to it that feel older, and when you view it from a bit of distance, I'd even go so far as to say it has a certain charming Edwardian vibe, though of course, I know it's no where near that aged.

It's warm, cozy, stylish, and fits me terrifically, and as such has quickly become my most frequently reached for coat this year, now that the temps are dipping below freezing again and heavy duty outerwear is a must again most days.

So where does one take a fabulous 70+ year old dress, a beautiful mid-century handbag, and a snazzy vintage winter coat? That's a darn good question, and one that Tony and I pondered for a while before settling on a location, which we both felt should have a lot of history to it.

Unfortunately, a massive number of historical/vintage related sites or buildings around our corner of the Okanagan, let alone ones we haven't shoot at before, so scouting a suitable location became quite the interesting hunt that particular afternoon.

After much deliberation, we decided it was high time we paid a visit to one of the oldest spots in all of the Okanagan: the Father Pandosy Mission in the nearby city of Kelowna. Named after the first missionary to set establish a community in the area, Father Charles John Felix Adolph Pandosy, the Mission traces its roots all the way back to 1859.

Today the Mission, which is jointly administered by the Okanagan Historical Society and the Catholic Church, is comprised of historical buildings from around the Okanagan, including some that were part of the Father's original Mission, which, since the 1960s onward, have been lovingly and expertly preserved and transformed into a small self-guided historical park. In 1983, the Mission was designated as a British Columbia Heritage Site, and can be visited year round, for a small fee ($2.00 per person; with higher fees if you wish to use the site for an event or professional photo shoot - hobbyists and those taking snaps for their own enjoyment, need only pay two dollars).

Almost unbelievably, given my unending zeal for the past, I'd never visited the Pandosy Mission before, though I certainly knew of its existence. On the day we were there, we had the entire place to ourselves, save for an adorable flock of quail who were zipping around in group formation as we took photos. We shot in two spots in particular (a historical home called the Christien House and the small two story chapel), but enjoyed taking a look around each of the handful of different buildings (including a blacksmith's shop and root house) that make up this fascinating location.

There was a quiet, peaceful solemnness to the location, and I greatly enjoyed getting a chance to visit it at long last. It seemed incredibly fitting to partner an outfit so rich in history, made up of pieces from my own family members, acquaintances, and strangers alike, with the precise corner of the Okanagan Valley that would go on to spur early European settlers to establish communities here more than 150 years ago.

This historical site, much like vintage fashion itself, just goes to prove that there is always the possibility of discovering, or being given, a new piece of the past to explore or call your own waiting for you right around the next corner.