Sunday, September 29, 2013

How I Became Vintage

     I know that when I am following a blog there are certain questions that I like to have answered. One of those is 'How did you become a vintage enthusiast?' I do not know if this curiosity holds true for all of you, but just in case it does, I am going to answer that question now.
     My lovely mother raised my two big sisters and I on good old movies. I used to be confused by the difference between what I saw in old movies and what I saw in real life. I honestly thought that people still dressed that way, just not where I was. When I got a little older and realized my mistake, I was heartbroken. I wished and wished that people still dressed that way; and then one day, it hit me. I am in control of what I wear, and nobody can keep me from being myself. I was watching 'The Parent Trap' (Hayley Mills) when I had this epiphany. I remember thinking how wonderful it was that a thirteen year old was wearing such beautiful dresses, even to travel in! I decided then and there that I was going to start building my wardrobe the way I wanted it. That was when I was fifteen. I came down that day wearing a sundress, to get started with my resolution, and my sister looked at me like I was crazy. I think that everyone got used to it pretty quickly though.

     I have been sewing for years now. I started hand-sewing when I was about seven (making a rag-doll named Charlotte), and I was taught to use a machine when I was thirteen. I started by making what I already had as vintage as possible, while beginning to sew dresses and skirts. I used fabric from my Mom's stash (she is very generous). I got some lovely repro patterns for Christmas, and sewed some dresses from them (one of which I just finished this summer...). I found out a lot of things I did not know before; such as the fact that circle skirts have bias areas. They are serious when they say to let it hang overnight. Or that all seams truly must be finished. I think that my true sewing breakthrough was when I found out that I had two weeks to make the following for a Civil War Ball: drawers, chemise, corset, hoop-skirt, and gown. And I did it, very poorly! Again, they mean it when they say that hoop skirts should be five inches off the ground.
In this picture you can see the hoop skirt peeking out. I was
tripping on it all evening, and it didn't fill out the top right.
That is my wonderful Dad escorting me.
This is my dress the next year. As you can see
there is a huge improvement in the shape of the

    When I started school last year I got a work study job in the library. There was not much for me to do; so I did homework and browsed the web, which led me to the discovery of vintage blogs. I was looking for a tutorial on making a fur collar, and I found this tutorial from Casey.
     I was hooked, and I went on to find many other lovely blogs. The great thing is that everyone has her own personal style, and is simply not afraid of it. In real life and in the blogosphere, she doesn't give in to peer pressure to conform. I went back and forth with the idea of starting my own blog, wondering if I would actually have anything interesting to say or show. When I finally decided to, I was so happy with my decision. Even if I never have any followers, it makes me happy to write about my passion for vintage; and who knows, maybe I'll even inspire some girl to dress the way she wants to.
     One more thing, I found these stockings at the thrift store for 99 cents, which is incredible. I have decided that they are from the fifties or sixties, based on three things: they have reinforced heels and toes, they are thick and durable, and they are shaped. The last is probably the most important. Anyway, one of them has a run in it. I am so mad at whoever did that. I was wondering if any of you lovely ladies have any knowledge regarding darning vintage stockings? I really want to fix these so I can wear them, they are in excellent shape otherwise. 

You can see the run in this picture.
Thanks a bunch!

Sunday, September 22, 2013

'Birthdays Come but Once a Year' or 'Fall Is In the Air'

The weather has turned to lovely chilliness, and I couldn't be happier!
     I meant most faithfully to post about my birthday a few weeks ago, but a few things happened. First I was required to go on a 24 hour technology fast for one of my classes (which was actually quite wonderful), and then Monday came again, and again. I am quite determined to start posting more often than once every 1-2 weeks, but habits take time to form. I am also hoping that it will be easier once we get our router working. Anyhow, it was my birthday two Saturdays ago! And what did I do? A lot of wonderful nothing-in-particulars. I love doing things because I feel like doing them, and a birthday is the perfect day to indulge oneself :) So I auditioned for a campus movie, I went to an antique store, I went to a thrift store, and I watched Anne of Green Gables. It was lovely.
This was actually a very warm day, but I was ready for cooler weather!
Rachael's totally thrifted outfit (except for the shoes).
     Now, the movie. I did not get a callback, and it was hard because I had not gotten a callback for the play I auditioned for either. But I knew that being brand new here meant that it would take some time to get into the 'inner circles' (not that my school is clique-ish, but the upperclassmen still have precedence). So I was beyond thrilled when I was looking at the Facebook page later that evening and my name was on the casting list! It is a very small part (which is why I had no callback) but I am thrilled to be in the movie at all. I am looking at this as a foot in the door, not to mention a challenge; I am a cop, the only girl cop. I am not really cop material, so acting skills ensue!
     The antique store was . . . interesting. It was full of crazy stuff, but it was kind of sketchy too. I did not buy anything there, but I wouldn't be opposed to going again. I am simply never going to go alone (I did not go alone that day, but now I know that I never will). Then we headed over to the thrift store. This place was pretty amazing. I found a gorgeous lamp, a candle warmer, a turtleneck with a huge 'H' on it (Tommy Hilfiger, but I like to pretend that it was made for me), a couple of movies, a buttonholer for my mother, and a huge bag of tupperware. Don't buy tupperware in huge bags; not a single lid will fit a single container, and you will be disappointed.
Some of the lovely flowers that are planted all over campus.
     I unfortunately still do not have my router working, and that is what I am blaming my lack of posting on. It's up to you to decide if that is a legitimate excuse or not. Probably not. Anyway, I did call the IT people the other day, and they will be coming to help sometime this week. Apparently the router that we bought doesn't like the Internet service provider, so it isn't us being stupid (what a relief!).
See, I'm studying! That's a good excuse, though not the one that's true...

     I want to do a post on my dorm room, and maybe get some nice outfit pictures together. I have been wearing pretty things, but the idea of taking time to take photos when I could be doing something else (like napping, say) is rather ludicrous. However things are starting to fall (pun not originally intended; cause, you know, fall is practically here) into place. Well, hopefully I will become a better blogger from here on out!
Lots of love,

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Vintage Photo Shoot

     Where I come from people are more likely to be wearing jeans and hoodies than vintage. Because of this I have never had any vintage friends. My sisters will go vintage once in a while, but not daily by any means. One of my main reasons for starting this blog was so that I could get to know other vintage ladies through the internet. However, fate has stepped in. There is a totally knock-your-socks-off vintage girl who lives right above me. Her name is Emileigh, and she also has a blog. Here is her post about our shopping trip (I decided not to be redundant and rewrite her post, so I will post about our photo shoot instead).
Emileigh is wearing a 1910's dress with a matching hat and a 1940's coat
She doesn't normally wear clothes quite this old, her style is more based in the 40's. I tend to swing between the 40's and 50's, so we have a lot in common. Our wonderful photographer did not give me any pictures of herself (which makes me sad), but if you go over to Emileigh's post you will see a few pictures of the lovely Ashlee :)
     We decided to go on this photo shoot to record Emileigh's dress, but the rest of us wanted to dress up too! (not to mention that Ash is my blog photographer now).
     My sister is wearing my petticoat and circle skirt (you can see me wearing it here) as well as my shirt (bought) and one of the lovely hats I found Saturday. The belt and shoes are hers though. Emily (second from left) is wearing a beautiful dress which she also found Saturday and couldn't resist. I am wearing my new wool skirt and another of my wonderful new hats. The sweater is from Old Navy, and the cardigan is from Kohls. The shoes are ridiculous. They are much taller than they look, and we walked to our venues. It didn't occur to me soon enough to walk barefoot and I got a blister. I am also wearing my new girdle (which I talked about in the same post as above), I will be writing about that soon.
     Despite our obvious longing for cool weather it was quite warm (though the weather has started to turn now, thank goodness!) We are crazy, but oh well. 

     Here's to friendships, may they last forever!

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Hectic Life

     I do so miss writing posts, but I have a wonderful excuse! I have now officially moved into my University! I want to give pictures of my girdle, my room, and many of the outfits I have been wearing recently, but I can't get online on my computer right now. My sister (also roomie) and I bought a router, but it sadly is being a pain. So until I can find someone tech savvy who can help me, I won't be able to post any pictures. Sad day for you, but I like monologuing! :p
     School has been going really well so far, and I don't have very much homework (which would thrill any schoolgirl). I am very over the hot weather at this point though, and I have been rebelliously wearing my new black pencil skirt which, quite frankly, is a warm weather skirt. I also went shopping yesterday with some new kindred spirits, who happen to live in my hall. Emily, Ashlee, and Emileigh at Flashback Summer. Let us just say that it is thrilling to meet another vintage enthusiast in real life, there are plenty in the blogosphere but not many in real life. Anywho, I will end by saying that I found four vintage hats and a vintage wool skirt all for $25. I was very happy! Pictures to come soon; I hope.....
Lots of Love!