Friday, May 28, 2010

when bad things happen to good vintage

(Or: good vintage gone bad)

So I found this amazing 1940s rayon crepe dress, black with a white dotted print, and a white shirtwaist with big fabric-covered buttons, and matching belt. I bought it for the shop, but tried it on when I got home, and it fit!

And then...I washed it.

Big mistake. You don't wash rayon crepe. It shrinks. My dress not only shrank (okay, that's a funny word to type. So is "shrink," for that matter), but the white shirtwaist got bluish-black dye bleed all over it.

I was completely bummed, and very mad at myself for making such a stupid mistake. I knew there wasn't anything I could do to fix it, so I stuck the dress in the closet for a couple months.

I took it out again the other day and decided to attempt to salvage it. The dress still fit me, although it was a good four or five inches shorter. I pulled out my favorite tool, the seam ripper, and took the stained shirtwaist out. I fixed a couple torn seams. I put it on with a vintage enamel pin at the bust (for modesty's sake), a new white belt, my sweet red platform pumps from zerkahloostrah, and...well, it's okay. It's definitely not nearly as cute as it was before.

The shoes really help.

Andy and I decided to start the holiday weekend a little early, so we headed downtown to check out the new retro 1930s speakeasy, The Viceroy. We sat at the bar, and our bartender was delightful. He made great recommendations and gave me my first taste of Aquavit. He also made me my new favorite cocktail, the Part and Parcel (gin, St. Germain elderflower liqueur, grapefruit juice).

Andy always looks great in vintage.

This one always looks just right--even in a blurry photo!


Thursday, May 27, 2010

of all the gin joints...

My best friend Stephani is coming to visit us this weekend, and as always, I am very excited to see her! She only lives across the state, but we don't get to get together nearly often enough. I'm also (cautiously) geeked about the opening of a new bar in town, a 1930s speakeasy-style joint that is claiming to specialize in classic cocktails. (Hence the above photo from RustBeltThreads' shop, which aside from cute vintage fashion, has a a great selection of vintage barware.)

[Prohibition, of course, wasn't all flapper fun and good times in speakeasies. For an interesting read about Prohibition's effects on society, specifically in New York, check out Dry Manhattan by Michael A. Lerner. And I've just added Last Call: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition by Daniel Okrent to my reading list.]

In anticipation of checking out this place, I was inspired to search out Prohibition era stuff on Etsy.

Cream raw silk flapper dress from greatestfriend.

Deco rhinestone bracelet from jeanjeanvintage.

Peach crêpe de Chine chemise (that is also a romper!) from DearGoldenVintage.

Silver 1920s mary janes from thegetupvintage.

If it fit me, I would wear this 1930s gown and jacket from the shop, but since it doesn't, I might instead just force Andy to bob my hair for me (no time to schedule a proper haircut, and four days in a row of near-90s temps are getting to me).

This gorgeous deco compact by American Elgin from Coloradofinds would make the perfect flapper accessory.

I love this sepia photo of a 1920s French couple, from comeungarcon.

And a photo of an actual former speakeasy (which I've visited!), Chicago's Green Mill, by helenesmith.

Love this Prohibition era sheet music celebrating one of the earliest home-based businesses! From MyMusicNation.

I'll probably be mixing up some Hendrick's and tonics for Stephani and me, but I really wish I owned this wood-bound 1939 Just Cocktails book, from usedbooks.

To see some more great Etsy speakeasy style finds, check out the treasury I made on Etsy (click photo to see the treasury full size on Etsy).

Chin chin!


Sunday, May 23, 2010


Andy and I went on a thrift trip Saturday. It started out gray and foggy, and then became bright and sunny.

We took photos in front of each other at this place the Ice Pick, which Andy says was a notorious place to see punk rock shows back in the day. It now appears to be a "Privite Club" that is serious about following Michigan's new "No Smoke Ing" law. I defy you to find legs whiter than mine. I am wearing a newly-found vintage paisley shirtwaist dress (which had the matching belt!) and my favorite cardigan, which I've already talked about plenty.

This vintage necklace is a longtime favorite.

We didn't find anything too exciting on this trip. But that's okay. We still had fun. We got to have lunch at the always delicious Mia and Grace (pork belly reuben, goat cheese salad, key lime pie).

And I snapped this photo of a pretty cemetery. Cemeteries always have the best trees.

I also took a (sadly blurry) photo of this amazing old radio with a turntable hidden in its cabinet. One of the many cool things we find, but cannot bring ourselves to purchase and bring home to our already overstuffed home.

This section of granny-knit vests, sweaters and ponchos at the Goodwill cracked me up. No, none came home with us.

The day was capped off by dinner and drinks with friends. It doesn't get better than that!


Friday, May 21, 2010

still a city girl at heart

We got a little warm weather this week, which apparently means bugs. Andy has to remind me every year that living in an older house, in the "country" (I never know what to call where we live; it's a little bit country, a little bit suburbia--no, not very rock n' roll), there are bugs. Which, y'know is fine. Unless they are mosquitoes. Or, as I experienced yesterday, yellowjackets. In my work space!

Nonetheless, I have heroically managed to bring you this week's shop preview.

Deadstock ribbons of flowers dress.

Blue flowers and pintucks blouse, by Russ.

Orange gingham shirt shift, by Sir Rob.

1950s plaid summer skirt, by Kelita New York.

Lemonade seersucker stripe dress, by Cos Cob.

Barbershop quartet blouse--lacy with floral ribbon trim. By Mardi Modes.

Taupe modern art sheath, by Pawtucket Sportswear.

Sweetest blue blouse with floral embroidery and rhinestone-studded buttons, by Gene Bart.

Black knit L'Aiglon dress with self-belt band at waist.

Pastel tropical flowers skirt, by Key West Fashions.

Floral explosion shirt dress, by Country Miss.

Navy and red knit top, by White Stag.

Olive sheath dress with architecture print, by Jo White.

Mushroom and ladybug print blouse.

Mod floral romper/mini dress, by Liberty Circle.

Pale pink lace skirt.

Green sateen paisley dress with full skirt.

Atomic dots blouse, by Shapely Classic.

1960s floral print dress, by Domani Knits.

Blue vine print cotton blouse, by Gabey.

Yellow gingham dress with full skirt and big buttons.

Red chevron plaid wrap skirt.

Aqua blue grid print dress, by Kenny Classics.

Golden floral pintucks blouse, by Junior Varsity.

Black lacy-ribbon sleeveless dress and jacket with bow belt.

Lacy diamond weave sweater, by Kenneth too! (exclamation point is Kenneth's, not mine)

Oversize flower print dress, by McKettrick Classic.

1980s silk basket weave print skirt.

Pink gingham dress.

Stylized floral dot blouse, by Shapely Classic.

Amazing fruit print dress, by Robert Allan.

1940s candy stripe blouse, by Dorothy Korby.

My favorite. Turquoise and chartreuse rose and butterfly print crepe dress with pleated bodice and knife-pleated skirt, by R&K Originals.



Blog Widget by LinkWithin