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Posts tagged ‘vintage fashion’

Vintage Black Velvet For Sex Kittens

By , 16 December, 2009, No Comment

If you love black velvet, but you consider yourself more of a sex kitten, a la Pam Grier or Raquel Welch, how about jumpsuits in black velvet?

Pam Grier In Blacula

Pam Grier In Blacula

Foxy mommas, check out this retro black velvet jumpsuit with sexy fishnet insets and a rockin’ mod buckle at the waist.

Sexy Retro Black Velvet Jumpsuit With Illusion Fishnet Insets

Sexy Retro Black Velvet Jumpsuit With Illusion Fishnet Insets

Or play the coquette in this vintage Edith Phillips of Hollywood black velvet jumpsuit with black satin trim.

1940s Edith Phillips of Hollywood Jumpsuit In Black Velvet

1940s Edith Phillips of Hollywood Jumpsuit In Black Velvet

I’m Dreaming Of A Rhinestone Christmas

By , 16 December, 2009, No Comment

What could be more impossibly impractical — and therefore more glamorous — than an incredible nightgown with rhinestones?!

Vintage Vanity Fair Nightgown With Rhinestones

Vintage Vanity Fair Nightgown With Rhinestones

I’d say that question was rhetorical… But since this beauty isn’t a stand alone piece (it may be a one of a kind now, due to age, but it wasn’t always so), there are additional goodies in the collection.

The gold embroidered label or tag tells you that this piece is from the Vanity Fair Conversation Pieces collection, circa mid-1950s — but you don’t really need that tag to tell you that, do you?

Gold Embroidered Vanity Fair Label

Gold Embroidered Vanity Fair Label

Vanity Fair’s elaborate and impractical lingerie creations, featuring rhinestones and gold lame, certainly tell you these are lingerie pieces one talked about — and probably showed off too. Not only bringing such fabulous lingerie pieces out of the shopping bag to show friends while the ladies lunched, but maybe by wearing it while entertaining and playing hostess too. Oh, the days when you didn’t fear unexpected company, but glamorously dressed-up for it, lounging about all dolled-up, hoping for it…

Vanity Fair Black & Gold Lame Nightgown From Conversaion Pieces Collection

Vanity Fair Black & Gold Lame Nightgown From Conversaion Pieces Collection

This Swing Is No Miss, Miss!

By , 14 December, 2009, No Comment

They say it don’t mean a thing, if it ain’t got that swing — but how about adding a fur collar and a big bold silver buckle in the back to a red velvet Lilli Diamond swing coat? Well, I’d say that’s a swing that hits a home run!

1950s Lilli Diamond of California Red Velvet Swing Coat

1950s Lilli Diamond of California Red Velvet Swing Coat

PS Don’t forget to enter my home spa and “teddy bare” lingerie contests!

Christmas Red Lingerie That’s Suitable For Hostess Wear

By , 14 December, 2009, 1 Comment

One of the things I love most about vintage movies is all the entertaining ladies did while wearing what we’d call lingerie. Even while the Hollywood Code was in effect, it was just fine for a lady to entertain guests while wearing pajamas or nightgown — so long as she wore a peignoir or a dressing gown over her negligee. While many of us would not be so bold today, we can — and should — wear fine and festive lingerie around our families, right?

For starters, how about this stunning two-piece vintage Alfred Shaheen hostess set in red satin? Asian-inspired styling includes a mandarin collar, deep side vents, 3/4 length sleeves and high-waist pants — all to leave you sitting pretty!

Vintage Alfred Shaheen Red Satin Hostess Set

Vintage Alfred Shaheen Red Satin Hostess Set

When it comes to vintage nightgowns, one of my favorite brans is Olga. There’s just something about the sensual fit of a snug nylon Olga bodice that sets my heart to thumping… Hubby’s too. *wink* But this vintage Princess style nylon Olga gown is modest — and stunning — enough to wear in front of family.

Vintage Red Olga Nightgown

Vintage Red Olga Nightgown

This vintage Olga backless-style ballet-length nightgown has a matching shorty robe, which gives it a 40s-style peplum look.

1950s Olga Peignoir Set With Short Robe

1950s Olga Peignoir Set With Short Robe

Add some glamorous slippers, and you’re all set with these vintage hostess lounge-wear fashions!

PS Don’t forget to enter my home spa and “teddy bare” lingerie contests!

Art Deco-rate Yourself In Black Velvet Dresses For Holiday

By , 13 December, 2009, No Comment

The only thing better than black velvet is vintage black velvet!

Norma Shearer: Black Velvet Glamour

Norma Shearer: Black Velvet Glamour

To be as stunning as Norma Shearer, check out these current auctions on eBay:

This incredible vintage black velvet two-piece walking suit from the 20’s or 30’s is loaded with so many great features I may just pass out! (Click the link or the photos below to see all the glamorous details!)

Vintage Black Velvet Walking Suit

Vintage Black Velvet Walking Suit

Back Of Vintage Velvet Walking Suit With Tasseled Scarf

Back Of Vintage Velvet Walking Suit With Tasseled Scarf

This vintage black velvet bias cut evening gown may seem austere at first glance, but notice the body-hugging silhouette and rich details which make it anything but puritanical — and then there’s the plunging back with T-Strap, loaded with silver and white beading and red rhinestones in a dramatic Art Deco design. Talk about leaving a lasting impression!

Vintage Black Velvet Evening GownWith Exquisite Art Deco T-Strap On The Back

Vintage Black Velvet Evening Gown With Exquisite Art Deco T-Strap On The Back

PS Don’t forget to enter my home spa skin care and “teddy bare” lingerie contests! (I wish I could enter!)

How To Wear Vintage Looks Without Looking Frozen In Time (In A Bad Way)

By , 7 December, 2009, No Comment

Often I am asked “How do I dress vintage without looking cheesy?” or, “I love vintage makeup looks, but if I wear it, will I look old or out of date?” Here are a few tips to know:

Don't Be Afraid Of Going Vintage Glamour!

Don't Be Afraid Of Going Vintage Glamour!

Think structure. Think of your own bones like you would consider the bones of your home when decorating your space. In decorating, you take the style into consideration; a cozy cottage with rustic charm may not take an Eames era makeover. When trying a vintage fashion look, keep your own bones in mind. Most period dressing had a body type in mind as well as in vogue and that may not be yours. Even alterations may not make that flapper style sheath dress float over your curves as you’d like… So be as realistic about vintage fashions as you would the style and fit of contemporary ones; this is also true of vintage hairstyles and makeup. Sometimes we just can’t wear what we love and pull it off.

Don’t remain frozen in the past. Retro & vintage looks can look outdated & just plain horrible if they are beat-up & dusty looking. You wouldn’t want your home to look frozen in time (think about some of those homes you visit which have not been updated!). The easiest way is to make sure you have authentic pieces with modern support. A contemporary dress with 40’s makeup (heavy top lashes, red matte lipstick); pair antique shoes with a new suit; mix in both a vintage handbag and retro jewelry with an au courant sweater set and skirt.

Keep your clothing clean & bright so it looks like you choose it, not froze it! Never, ever wear that 1960’s poly top with a stain on it — no matter how cool and mod it is.

Makeup tips for following vintage glamour looks. Keep the color palette to colors which flatter your tones and coloring. You can follow the look or design of cosmetic application, using colors and shades you already own.

Two words commonly associated with vintage faces are pale and powdered, but remember to keep these basic make-up tips in mind:

  • Don’t go lighter in foundation as it will make you look washed out & old.
  • Remember, too much powder collects in lines & on dry skin areas (again making you look older), so keep it light &/or use a lighter weight foundation.

High Fives For Vintage Lovers

By , 4 December, 2009, No Comment

I’m giving High-Fives this Friday to:

1. Dealers Are Your Friends (Or, Why You Should Shop At The Antique Shops): Good reminders of all that sellers of fine vintage fashions go through and why you should be willing to pay their prices.

2. Dreaming of holiday dresses from 1957 with Couture Allure.

3. Authentic Audrey Hepburn fashions up for action at Kerry Taylor Auctions (December 8th).

4. B. Vikki Vintage reminds us why fools fall in love.

5. Wallflower Vintage shows us how vintage keeps creepin’ up on the small screen — this time it’s Ms. Emma Pillsbury on Glee.

Fun Antique Handbag History & Facts

By , 20 November, 2009, No Comment

The first means of carrying personal items were pockets (not always one sewn into the clothing, but often a flat envelope pocket was belted beneath the skirt) or chatelaines (items on chains fixed to a belt). Then, in the Regency period, when skirts hung straight to the ground and bulk simply would not do, there was the reticule bag.

The reticule, a small drawstring bag still generally attached to belts as chatelaine, became an “indispensible”. The reticule does in fact get it’s name from the French ridicule, which likely has something to do with left-over sentiments regarding the over-indulgent Regency period in which the bags were born — as well as the fancy embroidery, beading and other adornment of the bags themselves.

Reticule Handbag With Asian Theme Embroidery

Reticule Handbag With Asian Theme Embroidery

These bags were small, as ladies really only carried about their handkerchiefs, calling cards, some smelling salts, etc., makeup was not en vogue — and certainly ever applied outside one’s bedroom.

Antique French Beaded Reticule Bag

Antique French Beaded Reticule Bag

When skirts resumed their width, some continued to use reticule bags, but they were not high fashion and you rarely see them in fashion plates until about 1870.

Though made as early as 1820, it wouldn’t be until the late 1880s that the more modern handbags with frames were in popular use. This is when those fabulous hand beaded bags on metal frames with carrying chains were made; followed not long after by the incredible slinky metal mesh handbags.

Women typically made their own bags as well as for friends and family, but quickly making beaded purses became a respectable way for a lady to make money.

As a cottage industry in the United States, women would make the purses at home — mindful to place a single white bead in a particular area of each bog (on both sides), so that the store owner could identify the purse maker and so properly pay her the commission she was due.

Single White Bead On Antique Beaded Handbag

Single White Bead On Antique Beaded Handbag

From Somewhere In Time:

If you don’t find a white bead in a beaded bag, you can assume that either the bag was made solely for the use and enjoyment of its’ maker, or that the bag is from a European country, where even if the bag was made for the tourist market, there was another type of arrangement, perhaps outright purchase, between the beader and the store which sold it.

High Five Friday: Vintage Fashion & Beauty Edition

By , 20 November, 2009, No Comment

High-Five Fridays are easy ways to acknowledge cool articles you’ve read during the week, or a way to give a high-five to a blog or blogger you just like in general by giving them a link — and some readers, we hope! Here are mine for this week:

1 One of Klaudia’s Shoe Fits is finding boots like Brigitte Bardot wore in 1968’s Shalako.

2 At GadaboutMedia, Deanna looks at the shades of history in cosmetic powder colors.

3 At Collectors’ Quest, Val Ubell wishes she had saved her clothing because it’s vintage now — and I agree! (Not only do I wish I had saved more of my own clothing for the return of the 80s, but if Val had saved her own there would be more to buy!)

4 & 5 At Kitsch Slapped, Deanna (how does she write it all?!) shows us vintage cosmetic products used to hide bare legs during wartime rationing — and, while researching vintage mesh purses, she discovered an unusual bit of film history.

Remembering The 1980s Fashions In Valley Girl

By , 19 November, 2009, No Comment

I had spotted this fashion shopping spread in that Elle‘s Women In Hollywood Issue, and the minute I saw it I was confused.

elle-valley-girl

“Break out the jelly platforms, biker shorts, neon bouclé and juicy bangles for a totally rad ensemble,” it says — for Valley Girl?! That’s not the way I remembered the fashions in the film. So, jumping the que in our NetFlix account, I got Valley Girl (1983) to refresh my memory.

Valley Girl stars Nicolas Cage and Deborah Foreman in the ultimate 80’s Romeo and Juliet story — with a much better ending, as no one dies. *wink* It has sat in my memory all these years as a great film in terms of capturing and expressing the look and feel of the times presented — not just the decade, but those teen years — projecting it all onto a screen then, and preserving it for us now. (I’m not the only one who feels this way either.)

To be honest, Kleph has an excellent review of the film; I found it while Googling for photos and insist that you read it because I probably couldn’t say it better or add anything, really. Plus, this post is about other things about the film: the fashions in the film. So let’s get to it.

Like I said, I could have been wrong recalling the fashions in the film, so I watched it again to be sure… But I wasn’t wrong. Valley Girl is not full of jelly & neon.

Valley Girls Mall Shopping

Valley Girls Mall Shopping

This was a period of bright colors, but not neon; think hot pink, turquoise, and yellow, not day-glo colors. The 80’s also had a strong punk influence — black, red, and more black.

Teen House Party In Valley Girl

Teen House Party In Valley Girl

Overall, bright solids, stripes and blocks of color were predominant. Collars were ‘up’. Patterns and stripes were bold, clear & crisp, not the colorful cluttered-on-black zippered things Elle shows.

valley-girl-stripes-and-patterns

Julie and Randy in the Mall Food Court

And Julie also wore quite a bit of the that romantic lacy look that I can best describe as Gunne Sax — not just in her prom dress (or the prom dresses of others), but lacy tops with long sleeves with plenty of buttons.

Lace Blouse In Valley Girl

Lace Blouse In Valley Girl

Julie doesn’t just wear these clothes for the cinematic conveyance of her difference, her ties to her hippie parents, her romantic side, or her nervousness dressing for a party (when her friend has to help her button those buttons on her sleeves); these fashions were strong in the 80’s. I owned and wore several of these sorts of blouses — and my prom dresses were all Gunne Sax.

Posing For Prom Pictures In Valley Girl

Posing For Prom Pictures In Valley Girl

I didn’t live in Southern California, but my friends and I dressed a lot like this (the ‘trickle to the heartland’ theory of fashion); one of the reasons that this movie spoke to us all then — and is fondly remembered now.

That Elle might get the fashions wrong is sad… It’s not just that I want the staff to be old enough to remember Valley Girl (though that would be nice!), fashion was a huge part of the film. As Kleph wrote:

That’s partly because Coolidge understood the distinction was a fallacy to begin with. The valley kids define themselves through what they buy while the Hollywood kids do it by what they don’t – but they still show their allegiances via what they wear. And it’s important that, in Valley Girl, when Julie and Randy first see each other – first become interested in each other – it’s at the beach when they are not in the usual garb of their tribes. It’s also no accident the film starts inside a mall but ends outside it.

Valley Girl is an iconic film which preserves fashions of the time as much as it uses them for a point, yet in pushing the return of such retro 80s fashions, Elle gets it all wrong. For the fashion mag to get the fashions so wrong isn’t ironic; it’s a tragedy.

Josie Cotton Performing In Valley Girl

Josie Cotton Performing In Valley Girl