February 28, 2015

Vintage Link Love for February 2015

It's fascinating, isn't it, how the shortest month can sometimes feel like the longest due to the lingering winter weather? (A point that I touched on recently in this post.) February was an interesting month. Objectively, I wouldn't say it felt that long this time around (January seemed much more so to me), but as with its predecessor that kicked off the year, it was a heavily mixed bag with no shortage of stress and curveballs (although, yes, I readily acknowledge, that's often just life in general!).

One of the better points for me was when I hit the point of having 400+ items listed in my Etsy shop at once for the first time ever (if you haven't stopped by in a while, why not do so today and checkout the plethora of great new offerings there!). As you may recall from last month's edition of Vintage Link Love, I'd set the goal of doing so by the end of March, so I was delighted to beat that date by more than a full month. My next big shop related goal is to reach 500+ listings by my shop's first birthday in early May.

In the midst of icy rain showers, Valentine's Day, an auction on the 15th in Vernon (which I came home empty handed from - but still had a blast at), listing up a storm, thrifting, and beginning my spring cleaning, I found time to enjoy some online reading and amongst the stories that have really jumped out at me lately, I hope you'll have a blast delving into this month's list of twelve exciting, informative, inspiring, or just plain fun selection of vintage related posts.

photo VintagelinkloveblogpostheaderforChronicallyVintage_zps551f30c8.png

Make a 1940s flower brooch: As part of Brittany's awesome 1940s fashion calendar for 2015, she recently shared this fantastic old school inspired flower pin how-to that will have you reaching for your felt stash and a needle faster than you can say "vintage accessory!" (and be sure to check out Bonita's beautiful version that she made and shared on her blog, too).

  Tips for taking photos in cold weather: Though winter might (finally!) be nearing an end, this is subject all outfit bloggers who live in climates that get chilly at any point in the year can definitely relate to and are bound to enjoy and appreciate the tips in this lovely post from A Beautiful Mess on how to still land great shots even when the mercury is shivering.

Aristocrats of Fashion - circa 1940 Educational Film: Ready to have your vintage fashion loving knees turn to jelly at the speed of light? Watch the delightful c. 1940 colour video below and prepare to be dazzled from start to finish!

Easy art deco nails with Scotch tape: Whether you consider yourself to be a master of nail are or are the newest of newcomers to the field, chances are you'll be able to not only pull off, but seriously nail, this awesome art deco inspired look that Bianca from The Closet Historian recently shared. It's chic, fun, and very Gatsby themed party worthy!

  Vintage Hairstyle Trick to Hide Bangs: Whether you call them fringe or bangs, they’re no denying that most women who opt to cover part (or all) of their forehead with an attractive length of hair end up having something of a love-hate relationship with said bangs at least every once in a while. If you’re not feeling your fringe at the moment and/or are in the process of growing yours out or simply want to learn how to do a classic rolled bang, than this excellent step-by-step, photo rich post from Tasha is sure to help banish those bangs blues in a heartbeat!

10 Reasons Your Grandparents Were Already Cooler Than You: To those of us who life a vintage filled life, this list might seem a tad obvious, while also including many things that we ourselves continue to do in the 21st century, but I still found it to be a fun, though admittedly somewhat over simplistic (for example, with #1, there has been processed food since at least the dawn of the Industrial Revolution, though I do certainly agree that eating locally sourced offerings used to be far more common and constitute a larger percentage of one's daily diet than it does for many in the 21st century), look at some of the things that really did make our foremothers and fathers so awesome.

Darling, Can You Spare a Dime? How Victorians Fell in Love With Pocket Change: I've long adored, and even one a piece of Victorian etched coin jewelry (with one of my nicknames/variations of my name, Essie, on it), so when I saw a whole (wonderful!) post on the subject of 17th to early 20th century examples of love tokens appear on Collector's Weekly recently, my eyes lit up like shiny silver dollars.

Top tips to working at home: One of these days, I suspect I'll pen a post on this topic myself, too, but in the meantime, be sure to check out Olivia's handy, helpful, practical advice for those who also call their abode their office.

A Wonderfully Nostalgic Compilation of 1980s Teen Movies Seamlessly Set to the Song ‘Don’t You (Forget About Me)’: For all those, like me, who will always leave a massive part of their heart in the excellent eighties, this memorable montage is for you.

10 ways to get a bigger profit when selling your vintage: From Trish Hunter's recently launched, and truly excellent website, The Vintage Post, comes this splendid list of ten tips that will help you up your profits when selling vintage, be it the occasional item on eBay or Facebook or full time on Etsy or anywhere else. Definitely one for all vintage buyers and sellers to bookmark.

Class Style Icon: Audrey Hepburn: Bethany, aka The Glamorous Housewife, serves up some currently available, timelessly lovely wardrobe options that will help you capture and convey Audrey Hepburn's elegantly youthful style in this fun fashion filled post.

Vintage Dance Cards: Liz's terrific photo filled look at this one commonplace, but now nearly forgotten (outside of the vintage realm at least) item is sure to put you in the mood to cut a rug, dance card firmly in hand, natch! :)

{All images throughout the list of links above come by way of the post that they are displayed directly beneath the write up of here. Please follow the links provided to learn more about these images.}

♥ ♥ ♥

Tomorrow we'll bound into March with the energy of an adorable baby bunny and I couldn't be happier about that point. March is a great transitional month. It ushers in spring and also houses the anniversary of when Tony and I met for the first time (2015 will mark eleven years since that truly life changing date occurred back in 2004). In addition, we start thinking about the next crop of holidays, such as Easter, Mother's Day, Victoria Day (here in Canada), and Father's Day that will greet us in the coming months, as well as the simple pleasures and immense joys of the season alike.

As winter slowly melts away, I've got vintage fashion on the brain (okay, I know, I've always vintage on the brain, but still! :D) and will be blogging about everything from an ode to one of my favourite colours ever (and how to wear it in a vintage context) to some awesome 50s warm weather looks that have been setting my heart a flutter this year to my final set of outfit photos from our trip to Vancouver Island last autumn, all in the coming month.

With every ounce my heart, I wish you each a magnificent, sun kissed and very beautiful March and hope that the third month of the year is as sweet to you as the first strawberries of spring!

February 26, 2015

25 fabulous vintage dresses to buy right now for spring!

With spring's official return less than a month away, I can't help but feel like I'm standing on a runner's mark, just waiting for the starter pistol to fire and for me in turn to make a mad dash to my closet racks and dresser drawers to delve into everything light and airy and sublimely well suited to sunny weather.

I must cool my (snow boot clad) heels a little longer though, as we haven't reached that point quite yet, but thankfully will in the near future and when we do, I know that I'm not alone in the slightest in my desire to shed off my winter togs like a crab parting ways with an old shell.

It's often wisest to shop for a season before said time of the year strikes. So while there's still a soupcon of time left before spring barrels into town again, for a fun change of pace, I opted to forgo this month's usual edition of 25 Vintage Deals under $100 and instead share with you some of the loveliest, most spring and summer appropriate genuine 1930s - early 1960s dresses that have crossed my path recently.

In keeping with the spirit of that series though, most of these are still fairly (if not "very") well priced, with none of them coming in over $200, and several hitting under $100. I've tried to represent a range of different styles and sizes, as well as time periods, and really hope that one or more of the following frocks calls your name and might even be able to land in your own closet this year.

Here's to celebrating spring - and marvelous mid-century dress that suit it to a perfect tee - right here and now!

1. A unique and rather wonderful combination of different types of both fruit and brick or stone shapes combine in this sweetly pretty 1940s lightweight cotton novelty print dress, making for one seriously cool, very warm weather appropriate garment (that comes complete with matching belt). Fits up to a 37" bust/25" waist. $85.00 from Chronically Vintage on Etsy.

2. For those early days of spring or nippier nights of summer when long sleeves are a must, reach for this romantically beautiful 1960s light blue and white Jonathan Logan brand toile print dress and stay nice and toasty while looking supremely stylish at the same time. Fits up to a 39" bust/27" waist. $62.00 from Hollie Point Vintage.

3. Two of the very most spring + summer perfect hues of all time - coral pink and periwinkle blue - team up this arrestingly elegant 1940s rayon blend swing dress to create the kind of breathtaking mid-century piece that will turn heads for all-time. Fits up to a 36" bust/26" waist. $70.00 from The Mermaid Tattoo.

4. Not only is this strikingly elegant 1950s/early 1960s blue floral watercolor-esque Kerrybrooke brand shirtwaist dress timelessly gorgeous, it's so affordable, I did a double take when I saw listing price. Fits up to a 36-38" bust/28" waist. $32.00 from Jane's Vintage.

5. The combination of vivid, vibrant teal green and soft, romantic cream lace in this stunning c. 1950s sleeveless dress is nothing short of swoon inducing. I would wear this to a garden party, summer wedding, birthday bash - or anytime during the warmer months when I really wanted to look spectacular. Fits up to a (snug) 36" bust/ 27" waist. $155.00 from Blue Velvet Vintage.

6. The scrapbooker in me remembers when terrific grey + yellow + white were the hot colour combo de jour three to four years ago. Thankfully, unlike trends in crafting that may come and go, this fabulous 1960s floral print short sleeved dress featuring the very same chic, fun trio of colours is bound to always be in style. Fits up to a 37.5 - 38" bust/28.5" waist. $56.00 from Hollie Point Vintage.

7. Butterflies, bows, star burst flowers, and dragonflies, oh my - and pretty please!!! This enchantingly cute, completely lovely 1950s sleeveless novelty print dress includes all of those seasonally fitting motifs and is so sweet you might not need any Easter candy this year! :) Fits up to a 32" bust/24" waist. $85.00 from Swing Kat's Vintage.

8. A garden's worth of gorgeous blue and brown blooms call this crisp white cotton 1950s short sleeve dress home. A classic shape, full skirt, and flattering round neckline only serve to heighten this fifties frock's appeal and wearability. Fits up to a 34" bust/29" waist. $75.00 from Chronically Vintage on Etsy.

9. Looking at the citrusy colours of this fabulously fun 1960s striped dress with its punchy orange hued buttons, I'm reminded of everything from lime sherbet to freshly cut cantaloupe, and suddenly, once again, summer can't possibly get here quickly enough for me. Fits up to 36" bust/28" waist. $46.00 from Sticky Lip Gloss.

10. There are few dresses into post that I wouldn't sport in the speediest of heartbeats, but this fantastic carnation pink patio style 1950s dress with its jaunty, darling rickrack trim is turning my knees to Jell-o and tempting me something fierce in the process. Fits up to a 40" bust/30" waist. $112.00 from Simplicity Bliss.

11. Pastel gingham? Check! Splendidly fun floral spring flower print? Check! Classic 1950s wrap style? Check! This vintage Swirl brand dress nails it on so many covetable spring and summer fashion fronts and looks like it would seriously comfortable to boot. Fits up to a 36" bust/28" waist. $110.00 from Blue Velvet Vintage.

12. Gorgeously eye-catching shades of serene blue, purple and white leap out at you from this party perfect 1950s floral print dress that boasts dolman sleeves, a becoming v-neck, and a lovely fitted bodice that gives away to a twirl perfect full skirt. Fits up to a 37" bust/30" waist. $115 from Miss Farfalla Vintage Clothing.

13. Fresh, lovely candy-like hues team up with crisp white in this terrific 1930s zipper front house dress (with fun front pockets) to present the sort of spring and summer frock that will see you through picnics, days of chores, flea market shopping adventures, road trips and scores of other events that we all love to flock to as the mercury starts to climb again. Fits up to 36" bust/28" waist. $108.00 from When Decades Collide.

14. Paisley can often come across and commandingly bold and very vibrant (not that that is a bad thing, it certainly isn't and I'm personally a massive paisley fan), but when it's done up in soft shades that look as though they could have been plucked from a mermaid's seashell collection, as this enchanting 1950s cotton dress is, they take on a decidedly romantic and incredibly pretty quality that makes me want to fill my whole world with this same warm weather perfect palette. Fits up to a 36" bust/26" waist. $105.00 from Dalena Vintage.

15. From the beautiful colour palette of robin's egg blue, olive green and white to the charming detailing on the neckline and the warm weather perfect floral print, this awesome 1940s day dress is the kind of vintage springtime frock that you'll reach for time and time again. Fits up to a 37" bust/28.5" waist. $104.00 from Minx VTG.

16. My very first impression when I saw this wonderfully pretty 1950s light pink seersucker dress is how marvelous it would be as the starting point for casual (by vintage standards) Easter ensemble - add white gloves, a flower bedecked bonnet, and pastel hued jewelry for a look that rivals that of any egg filled basket. Fits up to a 43" bust/33" waist. $72.00 from Stutterin Mama.

17. I would sport this charmingly fun 1950s blue and white gingham dress with daisies (real or artificial) tucked in my hair, a pale wicker handbag, and open toed shoes for a fabulously charming, subtly country farm inspired sunny weather look that would be as cute as the day is long. Fits up to a 36-37" bust/28-29" waist. $65.00 from Geronimo Vintage.

18. Serene shades of green, blue and tan combine in this airy, sweetly lovely 1950s short sleeve summer dress - complete with matching bow detail - to create a palette that suits the return of sizzling hot days so bewitchingly well. Fits up to a 48" bust/36" waist. $58.00 from Old Faithful Vintage.

19. Seriously, I can't even handle the fabulousness of this 1950s Bettina of Miami dusty rose, jet black, and cream short sleeve dress. From the tiers of feminine lace to the full skirt to the bracingly mid-century silhouette, I absolutely, positively adore it all. Fits up to a 40" bust/30" waist. $69.00 from Little Star Vintage.

20. Pale blue and spring got together like Easter and eggs, and this strikingly lovely 1950s short sleeve light blue dress with bow detail and matching belt would be the perfect vintage garment for almost any kind of casual to semi-formal (add gloves, a hat and a great vintage bag to up the formal factor) event or daily errand you can think of. Fits up to a 40" bust/32" waist. $135.00 from Blue Velvet Vintage.

21. If, like me, you can't get enough of plaid all year round (I swear, some years I wear it more in the summer than in the winter!), than this thoroughly lovely 1950s pink plaid dress might be just the ticket to breathe some new life into your warm weather vintage wardrobe for 2015. Fits up to a 48" bust/38" waist. $68.00 from Simplicity is Bliss.

22. A sweet peter pan collar feels like it's the icing on the understatedly beautiful cake that is this tropical sea hued 1930s turquoise summer dress. Fits up to a 37" bust/29" waist. $165.00 from Stop The Clock.

23. The colour of chicks, daffodils, freshly churned butter, and spring sunshine itself, this gorgeous pale lemon yellow hued 1950s eyelet dress is a breath of cheerful fashion fresh air if ever there ways! Fits up to a 38" bust/27" hips. $112.00 from Simplicaity is Bliss.

24. There's something so lighthearted and yet powerfully chic at the same time about the blending of vertical and horizontal stripes, as seen here in this happy-go-lucky 1960s deadstock (aka, NOS) turquoise/green and white striped summer dress. Fits up to a 47" bust/50" waist. On sale at the time of writing for $30.00 from Mintage.

25. I intentionally saved this whimsically magnificent 1940s nude coloured sleeveless dress with its uber cute bubble bee and flower embroidery for last because I wanted to wrap up today's list with the most springtime appropriate vintage dress under $200.00 that I could find and this charmer nailed it sublimely! Fits up to a 34" bust/26-27" waist. $164.00 from Stutterin' Mama.

{Please click on the photo of a specific item, or the link in the description below it, to be taken to its respective listing.}

Before we know it, spring will be here and in preparation for it, I've already added a couple of new short sleeve, warm weather perfect dresses to my wardrobe this year. I love shopping in advance of a season, as touched on above, and highly recommend doing so. It can save you time and money and often offer up a much larger selection of seasonally appropriate clothing.

In fact, throughout the course the current season that we're in, the saying, "In winter we shop!" sprang into my head many a time, for it really is true that I try to inject new life into my spring/summer wardrobe during the winter and then, when the dog days are upon us, vice versa (maybe this summer will finally be the one that delivers my long sought after matching two-piece vintage snow suit).

As we shake the snowflakes from our hair and retire our toques for another season, what kinds of things are on your springtime fashion wishlist? Are any of these dresses calling your name? I must say, a couple are not just whispering to me, they're practically shouting and I might just have to heed their call, if my budget permits.

Whether you splash out on one, two, five or more new (old!) garments or simply enjoy and get the most out of the ones that you already have, I hope that this season brings plenty of great fashion inspiration and ideas your way and that the weather is cooperate enough to always let you get in outfit shoots, when desired, of your gorgeous springtime looks.

February 24, 2015

Spring cleaning 2015 style

A few days ago, no doubt spurred on by the (possibly temporary - this being Canada after all!) of slightly above freezing temperatures - I began my spring cleaning for this year. I'd been fortunate, our big cross country move in early 2012, which involved some serious purging of household possessions, thorough organizing once we were in our our new digs, and a clean house to begin with, meant that for the most part, I was spared this hefty job for a while.

Three years to be exact - especially since our yard sale last year really helped with things on the organizing front for 2014. I, humbly, keep a very clean and tidy house no matter the time of the year (an unkempt house - or really any setting actually - genuinely fills me with anxiety and doesn't allow my mind the degree of peace and calm that a well ordered home would), so my spring cleaning is not usually a massive affair, but it is still work for sure.

I learned many years ago not to try and and do it all in one mad rush. That massacres my health and often leaves me unable to get out and enjoy the start of spring (which I definitely want to do). Instead I draw up a list of chores and projects and gradually work my way through them over the course of a few weeks (or however long it takes to get the job done).

While beginning this year's list last week, I was struck by how different some of the tasks on it were from those our foremothers knew. Of course there were the age old things like washing the windows, pruning the rose bushes for the new season, scrubbing the walls and the like, but - in part because I tend to use the term spring cleaning rather liberally to encompass all the organizing tasks I want to get done at home - it also had things like "Scan all store points/member ship cards to Stoard on my iPhone" (Tony introduced me to this app and I absolutely love it – my wallet is so streamlined now), "Create a list to save coupon codes from online sellers" (those save 10, 15, 20%, etc discounts that many sellers offer when you purchase online; this is something I've been meaning to do for years, but it kept slipping my mind until this month), "Upload latest photos from my phone to my computer" (I need to do more often; it has been several months since my last cell phone photo upload), and "Scan all 2014 business paperwork to send to my accountant in order to file taxes".

{Spring cleaning today is a fabulous mix of old and new - much, come to think of it, like vintage blogging itself. We carry forward some decades and even centuries old traditions and marry them with the world that we inhabit today. No matter how modern or old school your approach to cleaning is, there's no better time than spring to roll up your sleeves and restore order to your dwelling after a long winter of indoor hibernation. Image source.}

Times may change, the tasks we need to do may differ, and for more traditional cleaning and organizing, the tools and products (Green Works! Swiffer! Mr. Clean Magic Eraser!) may vary, but the fact remains that late winter/early spring is still a truly fantastic and practical time of the year to set your home, computer, cell phone, car, office, you name it, in order again.

On top of the usual elbow grease tasks and more digitally minded ones of the sort mentioned above, I'll also be tidying up my matchbox sized closest (which is nearly impossible to find anything in if it becomes cluttered), organizing some crafting supplies I've purchased in the last few months, culling old paperwork to shred and recycle those things that are truly no longer needed, rejigging my (very full) bookshelves once again to accommodate about 15 new books I picked up this winter, and checking to see which categories of greetings cards (birthday, anniversary, get well, holidays, etc) I'm currently low on (and then making + buying as needed).

I'm lucky in the sense that in so much as my health can handle it, I love organizing and honestly rarely mind most types of cleaning either. This helps make the task of spring cleaning far more enjoyable for sure, but even if it wasn't my favourite thing, I'm sure I'd still throw myself into with the same kind of gusto. The feeling you get when you know that every last hanger, towel, and photo album is in place and that there isn't a smudge or spec of dirt to be found on any mirror, window, or drinking glass is unparallel in my books.

So before the gloriously sunny weather finally returns and the last thing anyone wants to do is be inside more than they have to, why not join me in taking a 21st century spin on the classic tradition of spring cleaning your home, your phone, your computer - anything you fancy. You'll find the serenity and sense of order that it brings to your life is worth its weight in gold or Bitcoins, depending on how modern you want to get! :)

February 22, 2015

Flickr Favourites: February 22, 2015

{Vogue August 1942 ~ Amara}

{Sparkling Silver ~ Joy Russell}

{1954 winter fashion-skirt suit 2 ~ Mo}

{February 1940, Jeanette MacDonald ~ Amy Jeanne}

{Avondale Fabrics, February 1949 ~ The Bees Knees Daily}

{Vintage winter ~ Svenia Schreiner}

{Miss Marzie Brown - 2 ~ LLF archives2}

{Our Siberian Husky Mishka, loving the snow! ~ Sheila Bobeldijk}

{1951 ~ File Photo}

{Coeds Enjoy Winter ~ University of Wisconsin-Madison Archives}

{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.}

Does serenity have a colour? A season? A language all its own? I think that the answer to each of those questions is a resounding “yes!”. However, what classifies as such for me, may not be the same for you. The experiences you've lived, the part of the world you call home, the things that bring you peace, and myriad other elements will all factor in there.

I believe that serenity can be found in every season, though some, such as winter, do lend themselves more so to this powerful state of mind and being. February often gets a rather bad rap. Though the shortest month of the year, it can at times feel like the longest, and for many it's the last full month of winter weather, which makes us yearn for it to just be done and over with all the more.

Here in Canada, we're apt to experience wintry weather and temperatures until April (and for some, especially in more northerly locations, until May), but nevertheless, that almost palpable sense of longing for energetic new blooms, citrine hued sunshine, and open toed shoes start to kick in right about now all the same.

This is perfectly normal and okay, of course, but if even you're feeling “so done with winter” already, I encourage to stop and savour the ingrained serenity that February delivers all the same. There is a peaceful beauty to the way the world looks, smells and feels on a bracingly chilly winter's eve, just as there is to its colour palette of steely greys, powerful whites, gentle blues, and weathered browns.

As much as you may pine for spring and summer, take a moment and think about the last time you were melting faster than a crayon on hot pavement in July, when the whole world felt dizzyingly alive, pulsating with sticky electricity, and tell me you wouldn't have happily swapped at least one night of sleeping in front of the fan, in little more than your birthday suit, covers long kicked to the floor, for the chance to take a quiet walk in the snow on a frosting February morn?

It is human nature to want what we can't have and to long for the idyllic elements of life, but as we must take the seasons as they are dished out to us (save, of course, for hopping on a plan and embarking on a holiday somewhere warm, or conversely, chilly) and serve our spirits well by enjoying the best that each has to offer. Even if doing so can, admittedly, be a bit tricky when you're shoveling the driveway for the seventy-ninth consecutive day in a row or piling on so many layers you could practically stand on a street corner, undress, and have your own pop up clothing shop.

Do I miss summer? You better believe it, but I also long for certain aspects of winter, when June, July and August are here, so for now I'm content to put up with snow chains, steep heating bills, and short hours of daylight in order to enjoy and savour those elements of the season that I know I'll yearn for when I'm practically boiling on the beach in a sundress in half a year's time. Chief amongst which will always be, the immensely lovely serenity and stillness of winter.

February 20, 2015

Would you like to be interviewed for my blog?

Earlier this month I had the pleasure of interviewing Emileigh Rogers from the terrific vintage lifestyle blog Flashback Summer. Many of you commented on that post expressing your interest in these kinds of interviews in general, and also (in some cases) eluding that you might like to take part in one yourself.

I've toyed with the idea of launching a blogger-to-blogger ongoing post series before and your extremely positive response to Emileigh's Q&A session has shown me that there would be a serious desire amongst my readership for just that.

As such, I'd like to take the opportunity today to encourage any and all fellow vintage (and rockabilly and pinup) bloggers who might be interested to drop me a line and we can discuss the possibility of such further.

These kinds of posts do certainly take some time and effort on the part of both parties, so they wouldn't be a weekly occurrence, more like a periodical one in vein with some of my ongoing series here such as Saturday Snapshots and Adventures in Vintage advertising. I think that an interview post a season or perhaps one per month, if the amount of interest was that high, would be a fairly likely.

{I might not be the BBC, but I am the "CV" and I would absolutely love to interview you, if you're a fellow vintage blogger who wants to have a fun heart-to-heart with me about the vintage related topics that you’re most passionate about. Zip me an email and we can take things from there. Image source.}

There really isn't much in the way of criteria involved if you'd like to be interviewed, other than that you need to have an active blog or strong social media presence (YouTube, Instagram, Tumblr, etc) that you use as a micro blogging platform, that pertains to vintage or a very similar field (and do note, this can mean vintage decor, vintage fashion, classic movies, being a pinup model, etc).

I will of course vet all blogs and will not team up with any in this interview type of capacity that are spammy or completely commercially driven. I’m looking for genuine vintage loving bloggers with sites similar to my own and Emileigh’s.

That's all there is to it! In fact, you don't even have to blog in English. If you speak English as your second (or third, etc) language to a degree that you can confidentially navigate a series of interview questions, which I will be sending you via email, then by all means, you're welcome to get in touch.

Though there will be some similar questions (such as something in the vein of "How long have you been blogging?" and "Can you tell me more about your blog?", each interview will be unique and tailored to the person that I'm asking the questions to.

Your interview with Chronically Vintage will be free press for your site and a way to help connect with an even larger audience of fellow bloggers and vintage enthusiasts worldwide. You are welcome to blog about it on your own site, share it on social media, or mention it anywhere you'd like and I in turn will do the same thing once it has gone live here.

I think this is a really fresh, exciting prospect and eagerly look forward to interviewing some of you, my dear fellow vintage bloggers, in the months and years to come. Thank you so much for letting me know how much you enjoyed Emileigh's interview and for spurring me on to launch this new post series.


Speaking of interviews, I had the immense honour of being interviewed by fellow vintage loving gal Lottie Ryan for her stellar site Whose That Lady? earlier this month. If you haven't read our highly intimate interview - which covers topics such as my life with multiple chronic illnesses, my passion for vintage, and running an Etsy shop - be check it out now here today.

February 18, 2015

Seven vintage garments it might surprise you to learn that I don't own

There are certain items that are the bread and butter of a vintage wardrobe, especially for those who wear 1930s, 1940s, and/or 1950s styles. We know them well - pencil skirts, shirtwaist dresses, cardigans, high waisted repro jeans, and pearl (not to mention Bakelite!) jewelry, for example - and love them to bits (of course those who favour other eras have their own batch of staple styles as well, too, these are just some that tend to be especially common for mid-century fashion fans). They're must-have cornerstones of our closet and pieces that we rarely go more than a few days without sporting at least one of (see this post from 2013 for 15 of my vintage fashion essentials).

Beyond these most fundamental of vintage wardrobe ingredients however, there is still fairly large number of items that it is typically assumed most vintage (and/or rockabilly) wearers will own and when it surfaces that you might not actually have one or more such pieces, the response, I've found, is usually something along the lines, "Seriously? Not even one?!".

Nope, not even one. Sometimes this is because I haven't yet struck upon the right one, at the right price, or perhaps I used to own one, but it has bit the dust and I'm between said items for the time being. In other instances, a certain garment or accessory - no matter how much I may adore and appreciation - might simply look disastrous on me and as such I've made a conscious choice to exclude said item from my daily ensembles (learning about and working around styles that do not do you the tiniest of favours is an extremely important part of having an amazing vintage wardrobe that brings you joy, and is a topic I covered in much further depth in this post last year).

In others still, I may not have felt a longing to own such a piece. Even within the walls of our vintage wardrobes, our personal tastes are apt to change an evolve a little, and though it's rarely discussed, there are even trends that emerge within our circle that can cause one to suddenly feel like they want to rush out and purchase a garment or accessory that they had never previously felt pulled towards. By the same token, you may discover an item on your own that you had never felt drawn to before, but suddenly feel as though there is a gapping hole in your closet without.

Add to that the fact that for most of us, our wardrobes are continuous works in progress, especially if you're relatively new to sporting vintage, and it stands to reason that almost no one will have an example of every possible type of relatively common vintage garment to hand. You might need a second house just to store your clothes and accessories in if you did! (Mmmm, such an appealing thought...What's that? Sorry, got lost in a vintage wardrobe daydream for a second. :D)

I madly adore clothing, especially that of a vintage, reproduction or vintage appropriate nature, and take great pleasure in growing my wardrobe, making the most of my modest fashion dollars (be sure to see this post for some great tips on that front), and continually expanding the amount of variety on my hangers.

At this point in time, there is objectively not many areas of my vintage wardrobe that are particularly lacking. It would be lovely to own more of some types of garments and accessories of course, but I won't run the risk of finding myself clothing-less any time soon and I'm very grateful for that fact. It took me many years, a lot of dedicated searching, and no shortage of patience to reach this point and to have the highly currated vintage filled closet that I do.

Yet, chalked full though it may be (if we're talking my actual closet that is, which is about the size of a matchbox; great for creating disciplined wardrobe editing, not so fabulous for having room to expand your clothing collection!), there are certainly some vintage items that I don't yet own, or which for the reasons touched on above, I've opted not to purchase. I should mention that I'm talking about items from, or that look the part of, the 1940s and 50s, as these are the decades I sport most frequently and thus have centered my wardrobe around. Obviously, as I don't usually wear 1920s, 30s, 60s, or 70s styles, there will be many pieces from those eras that are not accounted for in my closet.

I thought you guys might be interested to know what some of the pieces that fall into that camp are, so without further ado, may I present a list of seven different vintage garments and accessories that I do not currently own (and the reasons why such is the case).

1. 49er Jacket

A truly iconic mid-century garment (that is still in production to this day), the Pendleton 49er jacket (so called because the women's version first debuted in 1949) sprang to life in the wake of WW2, when many women working in the war effort sported oversized plaid shirts that they borrowed from the closets of the men in their life (or just went out and bought for themselves to begin with). Made of warm, high quality wool and produced in scores of different plaid colour combos over the years, the 49er remains a firm favourite amongst vintage fashionistas because it's both cozy and does a great job of providing you with a mid-century casual jacket that can be worn just about anywhere.

Visually, I adore 49ers to no end, however as I'm very allergic to wool (wearing it against my skin usually causes me to bust out in hives in a matter of minutes), I've sadly had to stay at arm's length from these checkered classics. One day, if possible, I would love to commission a seamstress to make me a 49er style jacket out of a non-wool plaid fabric so that I could finally sport this style of vintage garment, too. Until then, I will continue to just make due with my lovely assortment of plaid shirts.

2. Fedora hat

Though by far a style that is most commonly associated with gents, long before they came back into vogue with hipsters and trendy gals in recent years, fedoras had their place in the hearts and wardrobes of many a chic woman in the 1930s and 40s. This sprang in part from their popularity with stars such as Marlene Dietrich (pictured above) and Katharine Hepburn, but also from a general trend towards, what at the time were called "mannish styles" that was widespread in the fashion world at the time.

My own lack of a vintage ladies fedora stems simply for the fact that I've yet to encounter any in person that didn't cost the moon and haven't tried my luck with sourcing one online. The older I get, the more this style of hat appeals to me though, so I could certainly see myself doing so in the not too distant future.

3. Genuine 1940s shoes

At the risk of sounding like a broken record to those who have been longtime readers of my blog, I have somewhat hard to fit feet (they have unusually high arches, are slightly uneven sized, and often fall between a regular and wide width in many brands), which just happen to a modern size 8 (occasionally I can squeeze into a 7.5, or conversely, need to go up half a size to 8.5 - all this despite the fact that visually, it looks like I'm about a 6.5). This combo, paired further with the fact that there are no vintage clothing stores in town, means that finding genuine 1940s (or 1950s) shoes is a challenge (I use the word "genuine" here to distinguish such shoes from more modern footwear that either looks the 40s part on purpose, as in the case of vintage reproduction shoes, or simply have vintage appropriate styling to them).

I know from past experience (with modern and repro styles) that ordering shoes online does usually not end favorably for me, so I've held off on investing in a pair of genuine 1940s shoes until I come across some in person that fit both my feet and ideally my budget, too. With mid-century footwear becoming harder and harder to find with each passing year, I know that it might be a bit of tall order, but I always like to be optimistic and like to believe I'll slip my tootsies into a pair of real, honest to goodness forties shoes one of these days!

4. Vintage swimsuit

Now, to be fair, I don't have a modern one at present either. Believe me when I say that the way my body looks in the type of clothes I wear and how it appears in something as unforgiving as a bathing suit are two vastly different things. Though I've had vintage swimsuits at various points in time, I rarely kept them long (always selling or giving them away to friends) because I'd yet to find one that fits me just right.

Couple this with the fact that some of my medical conditions keep me from being able to do much swimming (I pay dearly for weeks afterwards if I do - a mistake I only had to make once to realize that it's best for me to stay curled on the beach come summer) and that I don't like wearing overly revealing clothing to begin with, and it's not all that big of a surprise that I don't have a swimsuit.

That said, it is a practical garment, even if it's not a terribly flattering one on me, so chances are I'll pick up a vintage or repro swimsuit sometime in the coming months before summer triumphantly returns again.

5. Swing coat

As much as I like the elegant, classic shape of swing coats (especially those that are quite long), they aren't usually terribly kind to my short, curvy figure in the slightest. Princess coats however are whole 'nother matter! Their tailored lines and nipped waist seem to be custom made for my body body, so when Old Man Winter comes calling each year, I reach for vintage princess coats without fail.

I'm not entirely excluding the possibility of owning a swing coat, and I have always wanted a hip length "teddy bear fur" sandy caramel hued one, but at present I'm more than content with my pretty princess coats and suspect they'll always be the number one choice in my books when it comes to old school outerwear (even my vintage raincoat has princess lines to it :)).

6. Playsuit

Playsuits are super cute, super practical, and super fun, and yet, the fact that they often involve baring your knees, upper arms, and/or midriff (not three of my favourite parts of my body in the slightest!) means I approach these charming summer garments with great caution. I admire them on other people, praise their practicality, and swoon over old school examples of them, but for now my closet is woefully playsuit-less until I find one that lets me remain fairly covered up, but still have the versatility that comes with mix-and-match summertime separates of the sort that only playsuits deliver.

7. Penny loafers

I thought I'd finally crossed this vintage fashion staple off of my list last spring when I purchased a pair in near pristine condition at a yard sale for $5.00. Once I got home and attempted to get my footies into them however, they turned out to be too narrow to really even get on at all. *Sigh* The hunt will continue though, as I love the preppy meets casual meets collegiate look of classic penny loafers and would absolute welcome the chance to expand my shoe wardrobe with a pair at long, long last!

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Naturally, this is not an exhaustive list of all the possible vintage pieces I could, but do not precisely, own from the decades I hold nearest and dearest to my heart. Instead I opted to focus on pieces that are fairly common amongst the marvelous vintage fashionistas in our spheres and yet are no where to be seen in my dresser drawers or in my vintage outfit blog posts.

As time goes on, I would love to add those that do work for my body type (and sensitive skin!) to my wardrobe, just as would those that still remain (and others that have since been added to) my vintage fashion wishlist. Part of the greatest thrill of wearing vintage for me has always been the hunt, and the actual moment of discovery itself, so I don't usually mind it when there are items, be they commonplace, obscure or anywhere in between, that I'm able to search the web and offline world alike for – no matter how long it takes to find a winner!

What, my sweet dears, are some seemingly commonplace vintage items that most folks own, but which you don't currently have a single one of? Are any of them the same as the entries on my list?

It will be interesting to see, looking back in say, five or ten years, how many (again, of the ones I am hankering for) of these pieces have joined the ranks in my closet, and how many are still as elusive as the likelihood of unearthing a 1950s Dior suit at a thrift store. Only time, and perhaps a future follow-up post in a few years will tell!