September 30, 2014

Five timelessly beautiful vintage fall looks

Every now and then, in the vast expanse of the web, one encounters a friend not only with whom you share common interests, but also mutual battles. Such is the case with the wonderfully dear Lottie Ryan, a fellow vintage lover and longtime chronic illness fighter. Lottie is also a passionate, inspiring writer over at her excellent website Who's That Lady, where she, in her own words, "supports women with chronic illness to achieve it all despite it all, with a touch of magic, a lot of glamour and some wise old notions".

I have the deepest respect and admiration for Lottie and was thrilled when she eagerly agreed to guest post for me while we're away on our fun holiday to Vancouver Island.

As with everyone that I invite to post for Chronically Vintage in my absence, I encouraged Lottie to write on any vintage related topic her heart desired and I had my socks proverbially knocked clean off when the post she sent me was a beautiful look at vintage fall fashion created entirely with items that are for sale in my Etsy shop. Lottie came up with this idea herself and completely surprised me with it (in fact, I was touched to the point of tears by her thoughtfulness and originality). She did a top-notch job of putting together five awesome vintage fall ensembles, which, like Lottie herself, are as sweet and stylish as the day is long.

♥ ♥ ♥

While our usual host, the lovely Jessica, is off enjoying a well deserved vacation she’s kindly let me hop on to Chronically Vintage to play with you for the day.
What does every vintage gal love to do when she hops into another vintage gal’s world? Head straight for her closet and play dress up of course. Though I can’t literally do that (more’s the pity) as we live in different countries, there is now a Chronically Vintage Etsy store and it's the perfect place to play with its myriad vintage beauties.

I popped along to the store, and with the aid of Polyvore (my new favorite hang out - I'm lottieloves1 there, if you want to connect), I played dress up, and created beautiful vintage ensembles to see us through fall and into the party season.

I had such fun! I can’t promise that all items will still be available, as frankly my closet is crying out for these gems, but to be fair, I’m going to hold off nabbing them until you’ve had a chance to umm and ahh over what tumbled into my virtual closet dreams.

Come on, let’s go play and imagine beautiful days together...

The peachy hues of this ensemble cried out for some autumn love, so I paired it with this autumnal hat and added the most perfect acorn brooch. Just imagine afternoon tea, then a stroll in the park, where leaves crunch under foot and your best friend’s giggle is echoing by your side.

Here I’m vamping it up a little with this green floral wiggle dress and some contrasting blue and gold accessories, including this stunning metal clutch. With this outfit you’re off for a lunch date with your beau, highlighting your delectable curves but leaving it all to the imagination. He won’t be able to take his eyes off you.

Blue, the color of crisp autumnal skies and slow flowing rivers. This ensemble is for the hostess with the mostess to combine with a charming smile and delightful conversation, whilst delicately sipping champagne.

Isn’t this just the most fabulous dress? This ensemble takes you to a cocktail evening, in a beautiful resort, next to white sandy beaches and the cooling, early evening sunshine. A fabulous cocktail and dream boat lover are musts.

Who needs a a little black dress when you can be elegantly divine in this luscious black velvet number? I wouldn’t wear the necklace around my neck but weave it into my hair which swept into soft curls. This calls for an evening of jazz with friends, swaying to the music that has your feet tapping and your heart softly beating with joyous contentment. This ensemble has 'festive party elegance' written all over it don’t you think?

Oh, I’m now lost in a delightful world of afternoon teas, balmy nights and lovers kisses. What a fabulous way to spend my short time here. This Chronically Vintage world is quite something. Do let me know what you think in the comments below, meanwhile thank you for having me over.

Lottie -x-

September 28, 2014

Vintage Purses with a History by Leah Loverich

This morning's guest post comes by way of one of those ravishingly lovely ladies for whom the word ethereal was invented. From the moment I first discovered Leah's beguilingly beautiful blog and enchanting vintage fashion sense, I was royally smitten. Leah has a great passion for Victorian, early and mid-twentieth century fashions, accessories, jewelry, shoes, ephemera, photographs and other related treasures and an artist's touch when it comes to display and photographing some of her collection for her splendid blog.

Sweet, dreamy, instantly inspiring site that it is, I've been hooked on her blog since that aforementioned first encounter and was thrilled when Leah kindly took me up on my offer to guest post while we're off on our fabulous Vancouver Island holiday (many sincere thanks for doing so, dear gal).

Today she has put together a terrific guest post that shines the well deserved spot onto two sublimely pretty vintage purses, and some of the fascinating history behind them, from her own personal collection. Whether this is your first introduction to Leah or you're a long standing fan as well, I think you'll agree me that there truly is an ethereal quality that runs though every last thing that she shares, writes and creates.

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Hello lovely followers of Chronically Vintage, my name is Leah and I can most often be found blogging over at or sharing the occasional photo over at, however today I am absolutely delighted be posting to this wonderful blog of Jessica's, it is an absolute honour and I do hope you all enjoy what I have to share!


I like to use my blog as a place to document my vintage and antique collecting, and so I often make posts dedicated to sharing photographs of an item, along with sharing details of what I know about the items past, how I have come to own the item, and how I use it, and today I will be doing just that within this post with two of my favourite little sparkly purses...





I purchased the dainty purse above at the very beginning of this year along with a few other beaded purses within a box, this one was the very last one I cared to take a look at after having purchased as it was least favourite, though that soon changed when I discovered the little pieces of history within it; two Theatre tickets for the Lyceum in London on the 27th of December 1935! I think this may be the first time/only time so far that I have come by an item of vintage with a piece of evidence attached which proved exactly when the item was used. It does make me wonder though if that was the last time this sweet little purse was ever used before I became the owner...


- The Lyceum Theatre is a 2,100-seat West End theatre located in the City of Westminster, London.

- There has been a theatre with this name in the locality since 1765.

- The first London exhibition of waxworks displayed by Madame Tussaud was displayed in the Lyceum.

- After a fire, the house was rebuilt and reopened on 14 July 1834 to a design by Samuel Beazley.

- In 1904 the theatre was almost completely rebuilt and richly ornamented in Rococo style by Bertie Crewe, but it retained Beazley's fa├žade and grand portico.

- It played mostly melodrama over the ensuing decades. The building closed in 1939 and was set to be demolished, but it was saved and converted into a Mecca Ballroom in 1951, styled the Lyceum Ballroom, where many well-known bands played.

- The Lyceum was closed in 1986 but restored to theatrical use in 1996 by Holohan Architects. Since 1999, the theatre has hosted The Lion King.

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The above copper sequin purse joined my collection a couple of years ago when I purchased a 1930s wedding dress, at the time I hadn't realized that a glitzy little bag and matching wax flower hair crown was included but it certainly did make a lovely surprise! I love the idea of a 1930s bride adding some copper sparkle to her attire in the form of a purse, and well I just adore the idea of this bag having attended a 1930s wedding in general!

It does have some wear, especially to the handle but I always feel that sort of wear can add charm to a vintage item, it shows that the item has been enjoyed enough to eventually cause wear, it must have indeed been loved. I added some history to this purse too when I took it along on a visit to the Ritz London for Afternoon Tea a little over a year ago ...Now that is something I recommend all vintage loving lovelies (and even those who are not so fond of vintage) to place on their "to visit" list.

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Have you ever found a little pieces of history like a ticket or receipt before in an item of vintage?

Thank you for viewing / reading! xx Leah Loverich

September 25, 2014

Knitting trends of the 1940s

Like a lot of folks, I am a passionate crafter, however, I am neither a sewer nor a knitter, two timeless arts that many in our vintage loving midst are both crazy about and very skilled at. I have a ton of respect for those who practise these crafts and always enjoy learning more about either subject. Thus, when I asked my new, but already very dear friend, Cherry, if she'd like to guest post while I was on holiday and she enthusiastically said that she would, I was thrilled when she shared that the topic of her post would be none other than a fantastic, image filled look back at some of the knitting trends of the 1940s.

Whether you're a seasoned knitting pro, a beginner, or like me, have never clicked one needle against the next, I'm sure you'll adore this post and find yourself appreciating the beautiful knitwear that filled the action packed decade that was the 1940s all the more thanks to it. And speaking of thanks, that is precisely what I'm extending to the seriously wonderful Ms. Cherry for her engaging, delightfully lovely look at this great subject.

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Thank you so much to Jessica for asking me to do a guest post on her blog while she is enjoying a much needed vacation. It is such an honor to be here. My name is Cherry, I'm a knitter and a blogger over at She Knits in Pearls. I am also a vintage lover, so when Jessica asked me if I’d like to do a guest post, it felt only natural to write about vintage knitting. I am happy to share a bit of my knowledge with you.

During the 1940s you would be hard pressed to find a woman who didn't know how to knit. Many women learned how during World War One in order to knit for our soldiers and that practice continued on into World War Two. Sidar Wool Company strongly urged women with their slogan “If you can knit-you can do your bit”. Specific patterns were made and circulated for each branch of the military. There was even a wool control board that insured the distribution of the right yarns to knitting guilds all over Europe where there were rations on yarns.

Here in the U.S., many women gathered in weekly knitting circles to knit and organize there knitting efforts. They would have a list of the soldiers from their respective town and knit socks for each of them. However, not all knitting was for the soldiers. There was plenty of knitting for themselves; it was a great way to stay warm and glamorous during a time when our resources were limited. These limitations greatly influenced the trends of the time, but they sure didn’t hold us knitters back.

Women were determined to stay fashion forward. As resources became limit, we had to make do with what we had. Shapes and overall silhouette became more tailored and less extravagant. Jackets and skirts became shorter and slimmer. When it came to knitting that meant shorter sleeves and slimmer, shorter waist lines.

Lace and airy stitch patterns were a great way to make a little yarn go a long way. Many vintage knitting patterns were often made with simple yet ornate design elements. Not only was this a way to get the most out of what they had, it was a way to make garments interesting and feminine. It wasn’t just yarn and wool that was in limited supply. Dyes were scarce too. This meant that colors of yarn where limited as well. To compensate, textures such as bobbles, cables, and ribbing were used to keep things new and interesting.

Fair Isle knitting became very popular. Small balls of yarn could be knit into cheerful and patriotic designs. Each scrap of yarn could be used. In a time of “Make-do and Mend” women would even unravel old sweaters to create new stylish pieces. If the leftovers of a certain project were small they would be used for darning or mending a garment to make it last longer. When larger quantities were available, they could be used as stripes or color blocks on other garments.

If you’d like to try your hand at recreating the lovely knitwear from our past there are many on-line sites that offer wonderful vintage patterns for free. Wendy at The Vintage Pattern Files has done a fantastic job of collecting and sharing vintage patterns with her readers. You can find many great patterns on Subversive Femme as well. Bex shares a ton of vintage patterns and she knits them up as well.

I will say, vintage patterns can be very difficult to work with, especially for a new knitter. They tend to be written in very basic terms, often times not informing you what weight yarn to use or even what needle size. They may just give you a stitch gauge and a multiple of stitches you need for the pattern, ie. CO multiple of 8 stitches. This leaves it up to you to know how many stitches you will need for, say, the back of a sweater. Vintage patterns are not impossible to work with: they just take a good base knowledge and a bit of courage.

If that doesn’t sound like your cup of tea, designers are working to take vintage patterns and recreate them with modern directions, yarn suggestions and construction techniques. Check out designer Susan Crawford. Or designer and blogger Andi Satterlund, her patterns are modern with a vintage inspiration (and I happen to be completely addicted to knitting them).

Whether you are a knitter or not, you have to admire the creativity and ingenuity that went into the knitted garments of the past. What you may have thought were just the fashion of the times, were very deliberate. In the time of clothes rationing, women were able to take what they had, use a great deal of imagination, and create a whole new style.

As sweater weather is creeping up on us vintage lovers, we can look to these design elements for inspiration. Whether we are vintage shopping, thrifts store hunting, or getting out the yarn and needles, these and other 1940’s designs would be a great addition to our fall wardrobes. Happy hunting and knitting!

♥ Cherry

September 23, 2014

My Journey into Vintage by Seanna from Retro Writer

Yesterday Tony and I headed out on the open road - and ocean - to embark on what promises to be a truly fabulous two week trip to Vancouver Island, BC. While we're away rubbing shoulders with Orca Whales (or so I like to imagine ;)) , traipsing through majestic Pacific rain forests, visiting oodles of museums and historical buildings, and also aiming for some massively needed R&R, I've lined up an awesome series of guest posts from fellow vintage loving bloggers that will appear over the course of the next two weeks.

First up, I'm delighted to bring you a personal fashion related post from my close friend and fellow bookworm, Seanna from the wonderful blog Retro Writer. Seanna is a writer, vintage/rockabilly adoring gal, and all around truly lovely person, who I'm honoured to have writing for Chronically Vintage. Thank you so much for doing so, sweet dear!

♥ ♥ ♥

I am so excited and thankful that Jessica invited me to guest post on her wonderful blog. At first I wasn't sure which vintage topic to address. Then I recalled a certain topic my sister had wished for me to write and so here it is: my journey into vintage.

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I have often felt over the years that I was born in the wrong decade. If I had to go back in time, and I'd have to choose just one era, it would be the 1940s. My addiction/obsession or as I prefer to call it my undying love for vintage fashion began when I was just a girl.

As most girls in their teenage years, I did my best to find my style. I dabbled in the punk/goth with black hair, combat boots, and camo pants. I loaded my hair with gel and wore chunky leather bracelets with spikes. I even had pink streaks for a short time. I was determined to stand out. I'm sure this was my parents’ least favorite phase of mine.

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{Image source}

Then I drifted to the polar opposite end of the specter of the bohemian gypsy style clothing. Think 1920s drapey dresses with tons of embroidery and a whimsical feeling to it. I even grew my hair long midway down my back.

Finally I gave up in my late teens and just wore anything that fit. I rarely wore anything vintage because I had put on quite a bit of weight and felt uncomfortable in my own skin. I wore modern styles, anything to hide my weight gain. It seemed that no matter how hard I tried to find my style, the more I realized I was trying too hard to be something I’m not. And the harder I tried, the more my desire for pretty vintage clothes grew. Though at the time I didn't think I was at all worthy to wear such pretty clothes and self-punished myself. It was a low point in my life.

There were plenty of setbacks and one that nearly made me give up not only my love of vintage, but my love of writing. When I lost my dad two years ago I didn't see how any of that mattered anymore. All I wanted was my dad back.

Then it suddenly dawned on me, just a few weeks prior to losing dad, he took me to an antique mall where I bought a few pieces and he was so proud of me that after struggling with my weight and low self-esteem, that I felt confident enough to wear such items. And it was because of my parents and my sister, and my faith that I was able to achieve such self-acceptance and finally become the unique person I was meant to be.

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{Image source}

My journey into vintage isn't epic and it isn't life changing to anyone but me. But if it weren't for my love of vintage I'd still be searching for this part of me that didn't fit into this world I live in. It’s simple, I just love vintage and wearing it makes me happy. And I think it’s important that we wear clothing that makes us happy. Every single person is one of a kind. Why try so hard to fit in, when we're born to stand out?

September 21, 2014

A hearty, classic meatloaf recipe - plus just one more day until we go to Vancouver Island!

Travel has always been incredibly important to me, just as it is for many folks the world over, but the older I get the stronger I feel a powerful pull to venture forth and see more and more of the world, be it new destinations or returning favourites. Tomorrow, as we head off for two weeks spent savouring beautiful Vancouver Island, the latter will be the case.

As I haven't been there since I was 14 and my darling Tony has never set foot on the Island, there will certainly be an element of newness and discover to the journey for both of us. We hope to balance "doing" with relaxing, as we're both been working exceptionally hard this year and massively need some genuine R&R of the sort that our lovely fortnight on British Columbia's largest island will hopefully deliver.

Before we tuck the last suitcase in the case however, I wanted to take a quick moment and share a delicious, stick to your ribs kind of recipe that is so awesomely well suited to these early (very nearly!) days of fall: Vegetable Beef Loaf.
A few simple, relatively low cost ingredients, many (if not all) of which you may have to hand already, are all it takes to create this filling, taste bud pleasing take on one of the most classic dishes of all time. I love a hearty meatloaf like this, but as red meat and some my GI conditions are anything but BBFs, I always make mine with ground turkey or chicken and both do a wonderful job here. You could of course, if you like, create this dish with your favourite meat alternative crumble, thus making it vegetarian or vegan, just depending on what substitute you used (and if you forgo the eggs and use a vegan type of fat).

I make this with gluten-free bread that I dry out for a few hours on the counter first and enjoy playing around with the seasoning and vegetables, just depending on my mood and what's kicking around in the kitchen on a given day. It both reheats and freezes very well, and can also easily be multiplied many times over, depending on how big the hungry crowd you're planning to feed might be.

Just as when I was a little girl, my favourite way to serve meatloaf is with extra fluffy, buttery mashed potatoes and fresh carrot sticks (a little homemade cinnamon apple sauce on the side never hurt either), and that is how I generally serve it, but a nice rice pilaf, quinoa dish, big green salad, roasted root veggies, or any number of other sides also compliment this vintage meatloaf's juicy, wonderful flavour very well. This is definitely one of those dishes you'll soon find yourself weaving into your dinner rotation often during the coming chilly months as we part ways with summer once again.

{From potlucks to weekday dinners to Halloween party spreads, this timeless, budget friendly, easy to prepare 1950s vegetable meatloaf recipe is sure to be a big hit all through the fall and winter, when comfort food is a culinary must! Image source.}

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While I won't be blogging from the road (I will have my laptop with me though, but doubt I'll be on it all that much), I will be posting oodles of snaps and updates about our exciting adventures on Instagram and Twitter, if you want to follow along with our trip there.

Last year's travels to Calgary, Alberta proved to be one of the most poignant and important experiences of my adult life (as I detailed in this deeply personal post after we returned home) and while I'm not necessarily expecting this jaunt to Victoria to have quite such a profound impact, one never knows how travel will affect, better and alter their lives and I am 100% open to whatever Vancouver Island brings my way.

I love to grow and expand as a person, to broaden my horizons, to learn and to be reminded of just how much there is always is still to discover in the world, and travel excels on all those fronts - and so many more, too!

Until we chat again here, my dears, have a truly fabulous start of autumn and please enjoy (and be sure to leave comments on) all of the wonderful guests posts from the awesome group of vintage bloggers that I have lined up for you while we're off gazing out at the stunning Pacific Ocean for the next couple of weeks.

September 18, 2014

The cutest ladybug cardigan ever + the top comments that vintage wearers receive

Outfit details

Black satin 1950s hat: eBay
Pearl stud earrings: Claire's
Marietta ladybug cardigan: Voodoo Vixen
Red faux leather skinny belt: eBay
Grey 1970s does 40s/50s a-line skirt: Cereal Vintage Thrift
Red 1950s gloves: Unknown, had for years (likely eBay or thrifted)
Faux pearl stretch bracelets: Real Canadian Superstore
Vintage Saks Fifth Avenue black patent purse: etsy seller MK Retro
Black seamed nude stockings: eBay
Red patent faux leather pumps: Payless
Lip colour: MAC Russian Red

Photography by Tony Cangiano

Every time I wear this ultra adorable Marietta ladybug cardigan from Voodoo Vixen, which I've been doing a whole lot lately since receiving it as one of two thoroughly fantastic review products from the brand a little earlier this year (I blogged all about the other, the immensely beautiful Flora Dress in a post here last month), I'm reminded of the absolute plethora of these polka dotted insects that lived on the juniper hedges in our front yard of one of my earliest childhood homes.

I've never been the type who was of was terribly fond of bugs (being very arachnophobic doesn't help there), but these wee little critters didn't frighten me one bit and like many folks, ladybugs are pretty much the only insects I've ever let intentionally crawl on me. Proof positive if there was that beauty can be a game changer and how you interact with someone or in this case, something!

I love a great novelty cardigan, though objectively don't own very many (despite my rather large cardi collection), so I was especially elated to receive this beautiful black and red one from Voodoo Vixen. It's a splendidly soft viscose knit with some stretch to it that hugs the body marvelously. I generally like my cardigans to fitted, but not ultra skin tight, and this spotted insect adored charmer delivers there big time. The solid red coloured tie neck is another big point in its favour and helps instantly impart a further vintage vibe to this lovely garment.

Though red, grey and black is, no word of a lie, my default winter colour palette of choice (I wear it so very much between November and March that I sometimes have to make a conscious effort to sport other hues, lest folks start thinking I only own those three colours!), every now and then, loving it fiercely, I'll don it during the warmer half of the year as well, which is precisely what I opted to do when styling my beautiful Mariette ladybug cardigan for these photos.

A classic 1970s does 1940s/50s grey a-line skirt, a glamorous black satin 1950s hat (which strikes me, more than any other vintage chapeau I own, as one that Marilyn Monroe would have worn), red 50s gloves, classic pearl jewelry, black vintage patent leather purse, and red patent pumps round out the ensemble, which is just right for the not too hot, not too cold days of late summer/early fall (come winter, I'll slip on black tights and another shirt or blouse under the cardigan to help ensure I can keep on wearing this outfit even when we're up to our mascara coated eyelashes in snow again).

I've also been wearing this fabulously cute ladybug cardigan with denim capris, my grey 1940s style Heyday swing trousers, Freddies jeans, and with a red quilted 1950s circle skirt. I’m sure further ensembles will follow the longer I have the pleasure of owning this darling vintage inspired cardigan from Voodoo Vintage - which always, without fail, puts a big smile on my face when I spot it in my closet or wear it. Life, and one's wardrobe, needs a good hit of whimsy sometimes of the sort that only a cardigan this fun can deliver.

On the day when Tony and I took the outfit photos for this post, we also shot a video for my YouTube channel in which I talk about some of the top comments that vintage wearers receive from members of the public (and sometimes our own friends and family, too). I'd chatted before back in 2013 about a handful of the far more bizarre comments and questions I'd had directed at me over the years in a post called Strangers say the darndest things, but I hadn't overly addressed the more common, everyday sorts of comments that I receive before and felt that day was as good as any to do so.

Now, these are not the only comments I hear often of course, but the are some of the top contenders and as I know many of you receive such remarks and questions as well, I wanted to discuss them and let you know, especially if you're relatively new to the world of wearing vintage, that you're not alone in hearing such things. As I touched on in my video, I usually don't mind at all when people ask me questions or say comments to me about my vintage attire.

I am entirely aware of the fact that, objectively, I don't look/dress like 99.9% of other people (make that an even 100% here in my small town) and that that alone will always be enough to illicit curiosity. Fortunately, more often than not, the comments I receive are friendly, kind and well meaning, something that I know isn't always the case for some of my vintage loving/wearing peers around the world, such as this wonderfully lovely vintage couple from the UK who were recently in the news because of the challenges they've faced due to their vintage lifestyle and fashion choices (which is nothing short of criminal - we should all be allowed to dress, and live, however we please - so long as we're not hurting anyone, of course - without any fear of ridicule or rudeness whatsoever).

In posts such as I am Authentic to My Soul and Dress Like a Cupcake Should Feel, and many others here over the years, I have talked at length about the importance of wearing whatever one fancies and makes them happy no matter what those so-called haters and narrow minded folks out there might think, and this message is one that I will continue to promote for the rest of time.

Receiving comments and questions, assuming they're polite, from strangers and people I know alike doesn't phase me - shy as I am - any more in the slightest. After half a lifetime of sporting vintage attire, I've grown completely at ease with them and know that at least a couple (often more) will come my way anytime I'm out and about in public. It can be fun to see the look on peoples' faces, for example, when I reply that, "Yes, I do wear vintage all the time", for example. It is usually either a wide-eyed look of surprise, as though they themselves couldn't even remotely fathom doing the same, or conversely, a big smile and positive remark such as "That's awesome!" or "Good for you!".

Certainly another common type of question that I receive is where did I get a particular garment or accessory I'm wearing from, and numerous folks have already asked me that about this enchantingly sweet red and black Voodoo Vixen cardigan. I find that the general public is often more apt to want to know where to source repro, rockabilly, pinup, and vintage inspired pieces from, than full on genuine vintage ones, because those who don't wear old school vintage themselves are sometimes more apt to sport a modern piece that has a yesteryear look to it - and indeed, mid-century appropriate though it is, this cardi could easily be worn with more contemporary ensembles as well.

So, my lovely dears, just as I asked in my video, tell me, what are some of the most common comments that you receive when you wear your vintage (or repro, etc) finery? Have you found the public to be generally accepting, kind and polite where you live? What are some things you've been asked that you never would have expected? Do you wish that people would keep to themselves or you enjoy the questions about your appearance that come your way?

Personally, at this stage in the game, I fall into the latter camp. You just never know who, in doing so, you might help inspire to embrace and wear vintage more in their own life. I madly love, love, lovvvvvvvvvve vintage and any chance I get to chat about it with friendly people is a good thing in my books.

As is this cuter than cute, comfy, fantastic ladybug cardigan, which I think I might just have to sport again today while I continue packing up a storm for our trip in a mere four days to Vancouver Island. There's so much to do and so few days to accomplish it all in! I best hop right to it, like a ladybug flittering around a hedge, so that we'll be all set to leave at the crack of dawn on Monday, two week’s worth of vintage outfits all ready to see what kinds of comments and questions the lovely people of Victoria have about them.  :)


September 16, 2014

Fill out Chronically Vintage's 2014 survey and you could win big!

It has been well over two years (I know, where on earth does the time go?!) since we last had a reader survey here on Chronically Vintage, and in the face of an ever changing, ever evolving online universe, I thought it was high time for another.
This survey includes questions not only about Chronically Vintage the blog, but also the Etsy shop, as well as CV on social media. From day one, your impute and feedback have always been extremely important to me and I genuinely care about what kind of an experience you have when you interact with any of my sites. I value and adore my readers and online friends and would wholeheartedly appreciate it if you took a few quick minutes to fill out this survey.

{Now's your chance, take this Chronically Vintage reader poll, tell me your thoughts loud and clear, and you could win a $75.00 Chronically Vintage Etsy store credit to spend on anything in the shop. I can't wait to hear what you save to say. Image source.}

Once you've done so, please leave me a comment on this post letting me know that you've taken the survey. All comments will automatically be entered in a draw for a $75.00 store credit, which can be put towards any item (or items) in my Etsy vintage shop (that is/are available at the time you redeem your store credit).

Please note that if the item(s), including shipping, that are selected exceed $75.00, the additional cost is the responsibility of the winner. If you have any questions about this giveaway, please don't hesitate to email me any time.
In one month's time (I want to keep it open for a month to give lots of folks the chance to fill it out), I will use a random number generator to draw the winner, contact them via email or Facebook private message, and announce their name on Facebook and/or Twitter. This giveaway is open to readers from around the world and the only condition for entry is that you fill out the the survey below.
In addition, to thank you for filling out this survey, all those who complete it will receive a special, limited time coupon code (upon completion of the survey) which they can use in the shop until October 16, 2014.

Please note that your answers are completely anonymous and confidential. I will see your answers, but I won't know who or where they're coming from, so please be as honest and forthright as you'd like when filling out these questions.


Thank you very, very much, everyone, for your time and help. I'm always on the hunt for new and innovative ways to grow and better my blog, shop, and social media presences, and really look forward to studying the data this immensely helpful survey will provide me with and doing just that as we head into the last leg of this year and well beyond.

September 14, 2014

Photos of early and mid-century Miss America winners

Though there are no shortage of different opinions on the Miss America contest - and beauty pageants in general - and I know full well that not everyone out there is a diehard fan, I think it's relatively safe bet to say that what unites nearly all of those reading this post today is a general love of, and appreciate for the past, which includes looking at vintage photographs, even if they're of beauty pageant winners.

Started as a marketing ploy by the Businessmen's League of Atlantic City to lure visitors to the boardwalk after the Labour Day long weekend, the traditional end of the tourist season had wrapped up, and ultimately evolving into a hugely popular televised event decades later that is broadcast to many countries around the world, the Miss America contest has not been without its share of ups and downs (as well as contrary including anti-Semitism and racism - prior to 1950, for example, the contest was only open to Caucasian participants) over the years.

Ultimately though, it held on and flourished, giving rise to the dreams of many a young lady across America over the better part of the last nearly ninety years and becoming a cultural institution of sorts in the United States (and beyond). Often imitated (there are, for example, similar competitions such as Miss USA, which began in 1952), but never, save perhaps in more recent decades by Miss Universe, which is open to participants from around the globe, quite matched, Miss America is to beauty pageants as Barbie dolls are to the toy world: Glitzy, beautiful, heavily made up, and often met with criticism, yet few can deny its rightful place in 20th and 21st century culture.

In celebration of the fact that today is the 88th Miss America event, I thought it would be fun to take a peak at each of the earliest earliest winners, starting all the way back in 1921 with Margaret Gorman, the first ever winner of this now world famous event which was initially held in Atlantic City, New Jersey, and spanning the mid-century years until 1960, when a Mississippi gal named Lynda Lee Mead took home the crown.

{Miss America 1921 ~ Margaret Gorman}

{Miss America 1922 and 1923 (intitially participants could compete for more than one year) ~ Mary Katherine Campbell}

{Miss America 1924 ~ Ruth Malcomson}

{Miss America 1925 ~ Fay Lanphier}

{Miss America 1926 ~ Norma Smallwood}

{Miss America 1927 ~ Lois Delander}

{Miss America 1933 (the contest was not held between 1928 and 1932; in addition, the 1933 winner retained the title throughout 1934 as, again, no pageant was held that year) ~ Marian Bergeron}

{Miss America 1935 ~ Henrietta Leaver}

{Miss America 1936 ~ Rose Coyle}

{Miss America 1937 ~ Bette Cooper}

{Miss America 1938 ~ Marilyn Meseke}

{Miss America 1939 ~ Patricia Donnelly}

{Miss America 1940 ~ Frances Marie Burke}

{Miss America 1941 ~ Rosemary LaPlanche}

{Miss America 1942 ~ Jo-Carroll Dennison}

{Miss America 1943 ~ Jean Bartel}

{Miss America 1944 ~ Venus Ramey}

{Miss America 1945 ~ Bess Myerson}

{Miss America 1946 ~ Marilyn Buferd}

{Miss America 1947 ~ Barbara Jo Walker}

{Miss America 1948 ~ BeBe Shopp}

{Miss America 1949 ~ Jacque Mercer}

{Miss America 1951 (due to changes with how the dates of a winner's reign occurred, there was no Miss America 1950) ~ Yolande Betbeze}

{Miss America 1952 ~ Colleen Kay Hutchins}

{Miss America 1953 ~ Neva Jane Langley}

{Miss America 1954 ~ Evelyn Margaret Ay}

{Miss America 1955 ~ Lee Meriwether}

{Miss America 1956 ~ Sharon Ritchie}

{Miss America 1957 ~ Marian McKnight}

{Miss America 1958 ~ Marilyn Van Derbur}

{Miss America 1959 ~ Mary Ann Mobley}

{Miss America 1960 ~ Lynda Lee Mead}

{Please click on a photo to be taken to its respective source.}

♥ ♥ ♥

Even if you're not keen on beauty pageants (I can see all sides of the coin there, believe me), it's hard not swoon over the stylish clothing, hairstyles, makeup looks and overall sense of glamour that these gorgeous yesteryear winners all shared in common and that alone is worth shining the spotlight on at least once a year.