Lulu's Vintage

The Style Council

Lulu's Vintage Customer

The Style CouncilLuluComment

Casey of Sydney, Australia bought this beautiful Gigi Young black and white striped dress that I referred to as the Ponytail Barbie Dress because it reminds me of what one of the original barbie dolls would wear. The dress fit Casey perfectly and she looked so pretty!

This post was originally published on April 17, 2014.

The Style Council! Tiffany of PinkyAGoGo

The Style CouncilLuluComment

Today's Style Council Interview is with Tiffany from Roch., NY via NYC. Tiffany is the owner of PinkyAGoGo.

PinkyAGoGo placed tenth in the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Awards for Best Online Vintage Clothing Store


Please tell us a little about yourself. Hobbies, interests and work outside of the vintage world.


Outside of the vintage world-- I am a Toy Designer. Have worked for many of the big toy companies over the years. Now I only freelance once in awhile as most of my time is spent searching for vintage~ I am involved with a local animal rescue and I am constantly looking for new music that doesn't make my skin crawl :)


What got you into vintage clothing? How long have you been collecting vintage clothing for?


I always liked to dress differently. In high school would haunt the local thrifts and vintage stores
for the coolest finds.  In college, I would spend weekends at the original Domsey's thrift store in
Brooklyn. It was Mecca--30,000 square feet of vintage. It was cheap--jeans by the pound.
The coolest leather jackets.  There were tons of inexpensive vintage stores in NYC in the late 80s and early 90s. And I spent a lot of time (and money) in all of them!!



How long have you been selling vintage clothing for?


I've been selling professionally since 1998.



What avenues have you sold your vintage merchandise through? Your own web store, Etsy, eBay,
Vintage Shows, Antique Malls, Flea Markets, Your Own Brick & Mortar?


I started out selling on ebay--now I am only on etsy.



How much do you incorporate vintage clothing and accessories into your everyday wardrobe?


I always wear something vintage daily.  I don't have much of a choice as almost all of my wardrobe is vintage including jewelry, handbags, etc.  I can't tell you the last time I purchased something new--



Do you source most of your vintage locally or do you shop online or travel to other cities and states to do your shopping?


All of the above!



What do you feel differentiates your store from others?


There are so many wonderful vintage sellers out there and everyone seems to have their own style.
In my store, I just buy and offer what I like, what I would want to wear. I try to show the item from many different angles. And I always keep the background white--I like how the colors of the vintage clothing 'pops' against the white background.



How do you feel the vintage selling market has evolved since you first began selling?


Great question.  I first started selling online in 1998 in the earlier days of ebay. At that time, people were selling clothing items without pictures! It would be a basic title, something like, "Vintage GiGi Young floral dress", followed by a simple description and either no, or one blurry, out of focus picture.
Hard to imagine that today. Today--it's all about the pictures and photography. Some of the photography that vintage sellers produce is amazing. They really tell a story and set an atmosphere. The online selling trend has gone from no pictures, to photographing the item flat on a bed, to using a
half form mannequin, to a full form mannequin, to using live models, to elaborate sets and themes.
Some of the images that vintage sellers are creating look like they have stepped out of the best
fashion magazines.  It is very impressive.



How do you feel the vintage buying market has evolved since you first began selling?


People are looking for quality items that will stand up for years to come. People are appreciating the quality of these vintage garments now-more than in years past.



Do you have any advice that you would like to offer people just starting out selling vintage clothing
online?


The best advice I ever received is...."Just because it's old doesn't mean it's worth big bucks."
And ..."Buy the best quality you can afford."



Do you have any advice for people who are just starting out shopping for vintage clothing online?


I would suggest buying from a seller who gives very good measurements.
Who takes very clear pictures of the garment from different angles.
If there is a flaw, they should photograph it and describe it in a condition report.
Sellers should always show a photograph of the label if there is one.
Also, I would advise emailing the seller and asking questions.
If the seller answers in a quick, polite and honest fashion, I would feel comfortable buying from that person.



What are your favorite eras of clothing for wearing? What are your favorite eras of clothing for
admiring?


I love to wear 1950s - 1960s novelty print dresses and skirts when going out but mostly these days I am wearing a vintage 70s or 80s rock t-shirt with jeans. Right now I am in my moms 70s Stones t-shirt. It's so thin it's almost see-thru but I love it so much.

For admiring it would have to be the dresses from the 1920s flapper era. All the hand beading and work that went into these dresses is just amazing.




Who are some of your favorite vintage designers?


Christian Dior, Schiaparelli, Pucci, Courreges and the Vested Gentress for fun novelty prints!



Who are some of your favorite modern designers?


Jean Paul Gaultier, Yohji Yamamoto, Vivienne Westwood.



What would be your ultimate vintage fashion find?


My ultimate vintage find would have to be any dress or item by Schiaparelli from her surrealist period.
Her "lobster' dress or her "shoe" hat. A girl can dream!



Is vintage clothing popular in the city that you live in?


It's popular with a certain artsy type of clique--not mainstream.



Who are some of your favorite style icons?


Grace Jones, David Bowie, Siouxsie Sioux.



What are your favorite vintage movies, music and television programs?


I love any movie with Bette Davis or Robert Mitchum.
Music....I love it all.  Ruth Brown, Big Mama Thornton, Ray Charles, The Velvet Underground, Iggy and
the Stooges, The Kinks.



Do you collect any other types of collectibles or antiques?


I collect Mexican folk art skeletons and skulls, bakelite dice and brooches, chalkware burlesque girls, salesmen sample hats and shoes, purses, novelty printed fabrics, old carnival side show art.

 

Thanks to Tiffany for participating in The Style Council! To check out my recent picks of favorite vintage clothing items from PinkyAGoGo check out this blog post: Lulu's Favorite Finds from PinkyAGoGo 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice # 10 Award Winner

 

Stay tuned for Style Council interviews with all of the winners of the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Awards, as well as Style Council interviews with my 2014 Lulu's Online Vintage Clothing Store Recommendation winners.

 

If you are interested in participating in The Style Council please contact me at lulusvintagepdx (at) gmail.com

This post was originally published on April 3, 2014.

The Style Council! Julie Bergmans of Fab Gabs

The Style CouncilLuluComment

Julie Bergmans of Oregon City, Oregon. Julie is the owner of Fab Gabs.

Fab Gabs placed ninth in the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Awards for Best Online Vintage Clothing Store

Since Julie's store is the recipient of both the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Award and my 2014 Lulu's Personal Top 25 Vintage Clothing Websites I am dividing her interview into two parts. Posted below is Part I. Stay tuned in the future for Part II.

 

Please tell us your name and what city and state you live in.

Julie Bergmans. I’m a Portland, Oregon native. I’ve only lived in two homes my whole life – the house I grew up in NE Portland, my house in Oregon City, where I have been for ten years now.

 

Please tell us a little about yourself. Hobbies, interests and work outside of the vintage world.

I have to admit that the vast majority of my interests are vintage related. Perhaps the most notable departure from the vintage mold is that I attend Burning Man regularly. I just bought my ticket for my fourth Burn. I do wear vintage on the playa – only stuff that is completely thrashed already – and have actually run into another vintage seller (Simplicity is Bliss) there, so even that isn’t a complete departure. I’m interested in fancy cocktails, unique liquers and host lots of parties at my home, as well as planning occasional events in town.

 

What got you into vintage clothing?

Oh, so much at once. I grew up in a household of collectors – my mother and dad collected all of the Decoware apple set, my mother wore vintage hats and my sister and I were trained in how to behave in antique stores early on. Also, I would get up very early to watch AMC in the morning (back when it was all black and white, with a film conservator who spoke between films.) My seven-am’s were filled with Fred and Ginger and the “Road to ….” movies with Bing Crosby, Bob Hope and Dorothy Lamour in her incredible sarongs. I was hooked.

 

How long have you been collecting vintage clothing for?

I bought my first piece of vintage that I actually remember at 14. I could walk to the nearest thrift store, Better Bargains, which was a wonderful, junky old place. It looks the same today, but of course, the treasures are gone. I started with the 70s, but by 17 I had found the 1940s. I fell out of wearing vintage for a few years as a young adult, but got rid of ALL my modern clothing a couple months before my 23rd birthday, and have been wearing nothing but vintage or vintage styled clothing since. (I’m 32.)

 

How much do you incorporate vintage clothing and accessories into your everyday wardrobe?

Well, I don’t really have anything else (except some reproduction stuff) so it really makes up the whole of my closet. I mean, I have some under used workout gear. This is not to say I’m fabulous every day. I actually have a few completely destroyed housedresses with tons of iron-on bondex patches holding them together that I tend to bum around the house in. I also like to work at my computer in bias cut nightgowns. Because I can!

 

What are your favorite eras of clothing for wearing?

I’m really a war-era gal at heart, but wear a lot of 1950s pieces, too. In my personal opinion, 1938/9 were the pinnacle of years in fashion, and if I had a smaller figure and unlimited funds, I might very well wear nothing but.

 

What are your favorite eras of clothing for admiring?

I am really in love with the mid-Edwardian era. The workmanship is incredible, but the lines of the clothing are more accessible style-wise than many 1800s pieces.

 

What do you like about clothing from these eras?

In reference to ’38-39, there is absolutely nothing I do not love. The colors! (Oh my god, the colors.) The flattering cuts, the sleeves, the amazing prints. The mix of both girlish co-ed styling and incredible wicked, sophisticated evening gowns. The look is smart and tailored, perfectly flattering. It’s often flirtatious or seductive, but never overtly sexual, like the bombshell clothing of latter years. As for Edwardian - I love the weight of many of the garments. Heavy silk satins, weighty beading, metallic tassels, exceptional wool. There has not been clothing of that quality available outside of couture houses since. The mix of textures and textiles is always stunning.

 

Who are some of your favorite vintage designers?

Can I just sing the praises of Adrian here? While other names exist that impress – particularly Schiap’s surrealist pieces during my favorite years in fashion, I can’t think of another designer that I find on par with Adrian in my heart.

 

Who are some of your favorite modern designers?

I very honestly don’t know how to answer this question. I don’t even know most of the names. I do happen to follow Zac Posen on Instagram, if that counts.

 

What would be your ultimate vintage fashion find?

An Adrian/Dali collaboration, specifically, the horse gown. I know there’s a name for it, but I don’t recall it offhand. I’m surprised that dress doesn’t show up in my dreams occasionally.

 

Is vintage clothing popular in the city that you live in?

It is, although a more casual style than I tend toward. However, we have more vintage stores per capita than LA or San Francisco (I’ve done the math.) And there’s a pretty solid little community of vintage collectors. I like to think I’ve even done something to help connect and grow that community, through my cocktail parties and other events.

 

Who are some of your favorite style icons?

Joan Crawford for fashion, Hedy Lamarr for hair and make-up, Kate Hepburn for casual days. I suppose Dita, too, although it’s terrible cliché, but it’s hard not to admire a woman who always is perfectly coiffed in this day and age!

 

What are your favorite vintage movies, music and television programs?

The Women, which everyone will have guessed by now. And The Wizard of Oz. All of the Thin Man movies. As for more modern pieces with vintage appeal, I believe there’s no more perfect comedy than O Brother, Where Art Thou? I will shamelessly watch even the shoddiest vintage period drama you put in front of me. Just finished Miss Fischer’s…. next please!

 

Do you collect any other types of collectibles or antiques?

I don’t so much collect as much as I simply live among those things. I do collect Bakelite. (Helps that my business partner also runs a Bakelite business… privileges!) But my vintage kitchen wares, while matched, are things I bought for my household, not things I bought because I collect bullet-handled kitchen utensils. My furniture is all vintage, but I bought it for the look of my house. I guess you could say I collect my vintage life, in little bits and pieces.

 

Thanks to Julie for participating in The Style Council! To check out my recent picks of favorite vintage clothing items from FabGabs check out this blog post: Lulu's Favorite Finds from FabGabs 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Tie for # 9 Award Winner

Stay tuned for Style Council interviews with all of the winners of the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Awards, as well as Style Council interviews with my 2014 Lulu's Online Vintage Clothing Store Recommendation winners.

 

If you are interested in participating in The Style Council please contact me at lulusvintagepdx (at) gmail.com

This post was originally published on April 1, 2014.

The Style Council! Adam & Christy Parent of 4 Birds Vintage

The Style CouncilLuluComment

Adam and Christy Parent, of literally Anywhere, USA. Adam and Christy are the owners of 4 Birds Vintage

4 Birds Vintage tied for 7th place in the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Awards for Best Online Vintage Clothing Store

Please tell us a little about yourself. Hobbies, interests and work outside of the vintage world.

Currently, we are on a cross-country journey throughout the US with our 4 children. Together we opened and ran a coffee shop / restaurant called The Blackbird Coffeehouse in Port Angeles, WA for the last five years. But we dreamed of an extensive road-trip together, taking the 4 Birds Vintage business on the road, taking time to breathe, write, enjoy and teach our children, and see the country. So in the fall of 2013, we sold our coffee business, packed our belongings, and hit the road in a 300 square foot fifth-wheel trailer and truck.

Adam and I both enjoy reading and writing, and exploring the country with our children. We love finding good local coffee, farmers markets with fresh organic food, and great locally-owned restaurants. I love photography and blogging, and Adam enjoys playing the guitar and is teaching himself to play the ukulele too.

 

What got you into vintage clothing? How long have you been collecting vintage clothing for?

Over 8 years ago, we bought our first home - a 1950's ranch, and we had the best time finding mid century furniture to furnish it. Most of our finds came from yard sales and estate sales; and when we found a piece such as a dining set that we liked better than the one we already had, we realized that we could sell the one we had for more than we originally paid, pay for the one we wanted, and often have money left over. Soon we had more furniture, decorative objects, and housewares than our little ranch could hold, and it logically turned into a small side business for us, selling our finds to others who shared our taste.

I distinctly remember the day we stopped at a yard sale where a gentleman was selling his deceased wife's Victorian clothing & textile collection. The pieces were extraordinary; and though I did not really know their value, I bought what I had cash for, took the garments home, and began learning. I scoured resources online, learning of the garments' ages, the types of lace, their various terms - chemise, corset covers, bodices, bustles, etc. A local antique shop owner kindly lent us a dress form, and thus I photographed our first antique and vintage garments. I am so grateful for the many knowledgeable collectors and dealers who gave freely of their experience to help me learn. After that, I realized that I had found a passion.

 

How long have you been selling vintage clothing for? What avenues have you sold your vintage merchandise through? Your own web store, Etsy, eBay, Vintage Shows, Antique Malls, Flea Markets, Your Own Brick & Mortar?

We have been actively selling vintage clothing for 8 years, beginning with eBay and then moving to Etsy in 2010.

 

How much do you incorporate vintage clothing and accessories into your everyday wardrobe?

Though I am not often head-to-toe vintage, every day I wear something that is vintage ~ whether it is a 1950's cashmere cardigan, bakelite bangles or earrings, a 1940's dress, or 1970's platform Famolares. And this time of year, my coat is always a vintage accessory. Two years ago my favorite was a 1950's turquoise velvet swing coat. Last year it was a 1930's tweed beauty with huge 3" carved bakelite buttons, and this year a 1960's grey & white floral tapestry coat is a staple.

Adam is even more of a coat hoarder than I, so his wardrobe contains many vintage jackets and coats from the 1950's - 1970's. And vintage shirts  - plaid, snap, western style, Pendleton - are something he wears almost daily. 

 

Do you source most of your vintage locally or do you shop online or travel to other cities and states to do your shopping?

Most of our vintage has always been sourced locally, and nowadays it is sourced wherever we are. :)

 

What do you feel differentiates your store from others?

Pieces of high quality, timeless design, inherent beauty, and visual appeal are what you will find in the 4 Birds Vintage shop. Our pieces are cleaned, repaired & restored (if necessary), and arrive ready to wear - unless disclosed otherwise in a listing.

 

How do you feel the vintage selling market has evolved since you first began selling?

We have seen the effect social media has had on the online vintage selling marketplace, and the ways that online shopping has grown. Buyers were once only shopping from a computer, then laptops, now tablets and phones.

 

Do you have any advice that you would like to offer people just starting out selling vintage clothing online?

For those just beginning to sell vintage clothing online, our advice is to find a niche, an era, which you love. Selling vintage clothing involves a great deal of work; and having a love of what you are handling helps in the midst of laundering, sewing repairs, ironing, and more,

 

Do you have any advice for people who are just starting out shopping for vintage clothing online?

For those just beginning to shop for vintage clothing online, knowing your accurate body measurements and knowing what design of garments fit you well are key to a good shopping experience.

 

What are your favorite eras of clothing for wearing? What are your favorite eras of clothing for admiring? What do you like about clothing from these eras?

My favorite era is certainly the 1940's into the early 1950's. I love the way that era of clothing fits me, and I'm drawn to it as a time when my grandmother was my age now, raising her little brood of four that included my mother.

 

Who are some of your favorite vintage designers?

Some of my favorite vintage designers are Adrian, Schiaparelli, and Ceil Chapman. I love the artistic statements that Schiaparelli made with her clothing designs, love the impeccable tailoring of Adrian designs, and the sculptural but utterly feminine qualities of Ceil's designs.

 

What would be your ultimate vintage fashion find?

Since I first began collecting and selling antique and vintage clothing, I have thought that a dress by Fortuny or the House of Worth would be an absolutely amazing find.

 

Is vintage clothing popular in the city that you live in?

Vintage clothing is not very popular in the town in which we lived before we began our road-trip. Though we found people liked and complimented us on what we were wearing, many did not recognize it as vintage pieces.

 

Thanks to Adam and Christy Parent for participating in The Style Council! To check out my recent picks of favorite vintage clothing items from 4 Birds Vintage check out this blog post:

Stay tuned for Style Council interviews with all of the winners of the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Awards, as well as Style Council interviews with my 2014 Lulu's Online Vintage Clothing Store Recommendation winners.

 

If you are interested in participating in The Style Council please contact me at lulusvintagepdx (at) gmail.com

This post was originally published on March 27, 2014.

The Style Council! Cat Shanahan of Aiseirigh

The Style CouncilLuluComment

Cat Shanahan of Toronto, Canada. Cat is the owner of Aiseirigh

Aiseirigh tied for 7th place in the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Awards for Best Online Vintage Clothing Store

 

Please tell us a little about yourself. Hobbies, interests and work outside of the vintage world.

I am a former dancer, an art school drop-out, spent too many years as a corporate sell-out before I got sick of being a slave to money and consumption, and now am the mother of two tiny freespirits an online vintage retailer and fashion stylist for print.

 

What got you into vintage clothing? How long have you been collecting vintage clothing for?

I am the youngest born into a family of 5. My parents had me in their late 40s in 1981. I grew up watching classic old-hollywood movies, listening to 60s and 70s vinyl that had belonged to my much older siblings, reading Nancy Drew and thinking that Lawrence Welk was still in syndication! My parents had a very atomic era approach to child rearing and our turquoise blue 1940s bungalow by the lake looked and felt a bit like a time capsule. My mother was a model in the 50s and every picture of her was of this dreamy glam little bombshell draped in sparkley tulle. In the first grade she dressed me as Gretta Garbo for Halloween and in the second she constructed a habit and sent me off as the flying nun! We didn't have a whole lot of material means so in my teens I thrifted out of necessity. During this period I found myself gravitating towards vintage garments (which at the time in the 90s where much easier to find at charity and thrift shops). I wore Gunne Sax Maxi Dresses to school in the 9th grade with Doc Martins, I wore 70s white rabbit fur coats in the winter, and I wore 50s and 60s prom pretties to my semi-formals. I have been collecting vintage since I was 14 so going on 20 years!!!

 

How much do you incorporate vintage clothing and accessories into your everyday wardrobe?

Quite a bit! My outerwear is pretty exclusively vintage and I don't think I ever go out without at least one vintage piece on. Modern clothing make me a little sad for the most part. Now this is a generalisation but for the most part they tend to be shapeless and bland and poorly constructed and none of that appeals to how I want to look or feel!

 

Do you source most of your vintage locally or do you shop online or travel to other cities and states to do your shopping?

I mostly source locally from a network of collectors I have built over the years. That said I still thrift multiple times a week though the pickings get slimmer and slimmer each year. I have bought online a few times, I do estate sales every now and then and am starting to get into auctions. This summer I am planning a road trip to the States to see what I can find!

 

What do you feel differentiates your store from others?

I think my shop has an indulgent and dreamy feel to it. I don't do wallflower vintage. I like things that are bold, bright, sparkly, and feel special. Nothing about my personal style is very understated and I don't think my shop is either. I want to find people that one piece that makes them feel wonderful, that draws attention, that they can standout in and that shows the world a glimpse of who they are and the lives they have lived.

 

How do you feel the vintage selling market has evolved since you first began selling?

It is getting more and more saturated and the sellers are getting more and more professional in terms of product marketing, branding, and visuals. When I started there were a handful of people using models and studio lighting now it is pretty common for most sellers and the new shops are popping up with professional looking photography right off the bat. Gone is the day of a pretty dress tossed on the kitchen floor and photographed blurry and crooked!

 

How do you feel the vintage buying market has evolved since you first began selling?

Vintage is a finite resource and there is less of it around now. It is getting more expensive as a result of its rarity. I think this is changing the buying market quite a bit because both sellers and buyers are becoming more discerning about their purchases.

 

Do you have any advice that you would like to offer people just starting out selling vintage clothing online?

My advice is that it is in no way easy! I think a lot of people come into this with rose coloured glasses thinking they are going to go find gorgeous items and list them and get popular and sell them for top dollar and live happily ever after! It is more work than I have ever done in my life! Also it is an expensive business to get into. Some months after I have bought inventory, paid models,and replaced equipment I shudder at how much I have spent! But if it is their passion and they are willing to live it, to learn everything and anything they can, and to struggle through the dry spots then I can't think of anything better to dedicate ones professional life too.

 

Do you have any advice for people who are just starting out shopping for vintage clothing online?

My advise for those who are just starting out buying vintage online is to educate themselves as to what vintage is. Different era's will offer different styles, lines, cuts, condition, and price points. I think it is important that buyers understand what will flatter them, what the going price for those eras/styles are, and characteristic flaws that can be expected in garments that are decades old. Also, I think it is important that they understand that with vintage you are buying a one off and chances are you going to require a little tailoring to make a perfect fit. They should look for sellers who are responsive, knowledgeable and who have an established customer service track record.

 

What are your favorite eras of clothing for wearing? What are your favorite eras of clothing for admiring?

I love wearing mod 60s. In that it is when I came of age I have a soft spot for the 90s. 50s flatter my figure and are so so pretty!! I love anything edwardian and art deco but I find I am not lithe enough for those eras so those are the ones I love looking at.

 

What do you like about clothing from these eras?

I like how streamlined mod 60s garments are. There is a simplicity to them with the fun balance of interesting optic patterns and prints. The 90s referenced a whole lot of bygone eras. There were hints of victorian, a nod to the 70s, bits and bites of 60s. They were really an era where we as a youth generation referenced so many eclectic styles and cultural histories. Also, it is when I started to really see fashion as a form of self expression so it has a soft spot in my memories and in my heart. What's not to like about the 50s? The fabrications, the dreamy designs, the over the top feel of wearing that much tulle, or the way that a well tailored wiggle dress makes you feel so powerfully feminine. I think everyone's inner 4 year old looks at a 50s garments and swoons! Art Deco garments are just something to behold. I love the delicate but sturdy construction, the attention to detail, and the beadwork when present. Finally Edwardian garments literally blow my mind. The lace work is enough to make my heart race.

 

Who are some of your favorite vintage designers?

My favourite vintage designers would have to be Alexander McQueen, Balmain, Biba, Lanvin, Lilly Diamond, Missioni, Suzy Perette, Thierry Mugler, Ungaro, and Vivienne Westwood.

 

Who are some of your favorite modern designers?

My favourite modern designers at the moment would have to be Badgley Mischka, Zac Posen (his work references the style and construction of New Look so beautifully), Carolina Herrera, and I have to shout out my fellow Canadians Christian Siriano and Lucian Matis for their incredible contributions to modern fashion.

 

What would be your ultimate vintage fashion find?

If I found a Fortuny or a Zandra Rhodes I would be the happiest little girl in the whole wide world!

 

Who are some of your favorite style icons?

I love Bianca Jagger, Marisa Berenson, Frida Kahlo, Jacqueline de Ribes, and Ali McGraw.

 

What are your favorite vintage movies, music and television programs?

Movie wise my 4 year old son and I love watching Steve McQueen in the Great Escape, I love the Red Shoes, Gypsy Rosalie, The Blue Bird of Happiness with Shirley Temple anything and everything with Cary Grant (he is my soul-mate),  Hair, Jesus Christ Superstar, Where the Lilies Bloom and so many more I could go on for weeks! Music wise I love musicals, 60s folk music, Janis Joplin, Queen, Motown, Jazz you name it! I don't listen to much modern music and most of what I listen to is on vinyl. I have never been big into T.V. or T.V. shows episodic doesn't really do it for me.

 

Do you collect any other types of collectibles or antiques?

I collect vintage chairs, vinyl, and toys.

 

Thanks to Cat for participating in The Style Council! To check out my recent picks of favorite vintage clothing items from Aiseirigh check out this blog post: Lulu's Favorite Finds from Aiseirigh 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Tie for # 7 Award Winner

Stay tuned for Style Council interviews with all of the winners of the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Awards, as well as Style Council interviews with my 2014 Lulu's Online Vintage Clothing Store Recommendation winners.

 

If you are interested in participating in The Style Council please contact me at lulusvintagepdx (at) gmail.com

This post was originally published on March 25, 2014.

The Style Council! Nicole Jenkins of Circa Vintage Clothing

The Style CouncilLuluComment

Nicole Jenkins of Melbourne, Australia. Nicole is the owner of Circa Vintage Clothing.

Circa Vintage Clothing placed fifth in the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Awards for Best Online Vintage Clothing Store.

Since Nicole's store is the recipient of both the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Award and my 2014 Lulu's Personal Top 25 Vintage Clothing Websites I am dividing her interview into two parts. Posted below is Part I. Stay tuned in the future for Part II.

 

Please tell us a little about yourself. Hobbies, interests and work outside of the vintage world.

Vintage comprises most of my world but looking outside of that, I like to ride my bike, read books, admire architecture, listen to live music and visit art galleries.

 

What got you into vintage clothing? How long have you been collecting vintage clothing for?

I was born into vintage: my mum dressed me in second hand ‘30s florals and she ran an antique shop. We lived in Victorian houses and drove vintage cars – a fine appreciation of history and culture has always been important to me.

There were books about historical clothing in our library (my father was a writer) and as soon as I was able, I would pore over artworks depicting Elizabethan gowns and hand sew mini versions for my home made dolls.

I had a brief attempt at wearing current fashion as an early teen but in 1980, I fell in love with a polka dot ‘50s party dress and thereafter have dedicated myself to the pursuit of the perfect vintage frock.

 

How much do you incorporate vintage clothing and accessories into your everyday wardrobe?

For thirty years I wore mostly vintage every day but more recently my every day wear is a vintage style modern dress worn with a vintage petticoat (a must) plus vintage accessories: scarves, cravats, jewellery, handbags.

For events and special occasions it has to be vintage wherever possible.

 

What are your favorite eras of clothing for wearing? What are your favorite eras of clothing for admiring?

I rotate through the eras constantly but I’m currently loving the soft elegance of the ‘30s for admiring.

As to which styles I wear, my wardrobe contains boudoir gowns from the ‘30s, dinner dresses from the ‘40s and cotton florals from the ‘50s. My preference is for natural fibres so I rarely venture into the ‘60s and ‘70s.

 

 What do you like about clothing from these eras?

1930s have a wonderful sense of unstructured femininity.

1940s are practical and flattering in a non-wasteful way. I love make do and mend and the limitations that rationing demanded.

1950s are classic and glamourous, especially the evening wear.


Who are some of your favorite vintage designers?

I love costume designers like Adrian, Edith Head and Orry-Kelly who dressed the stars in incredible gowns and tailored suits.

For fashion designers I love the surrealist designs of Elsa Schiaparelli, the plain and enduring wearability of Coco Chanel, the extravagant sensuality of Mariano Fortuny, the hyper-femininity of Christian Dior, the sculptural tailoring skill of Cristobal Balenciaga, the sexiness of Ossie Clark.


Who are some of your favorite modern designers?

The dearly departed Alexander McQueen was one of the most interesting of modern designers, with his creativity and use of unorthodox materials. I also love the artistic work of Philip Treacy and the amazing suits of Thierry Mugler. Galliano produced some incredible flower-like gowns for the House of Dior before his fall. Christian would have been proud. Issey Miyake does incredible things with fabric and colour.


What would be your ultimate vintage fashion find?

One day I would dearly love to hold a Fortuny Delphos, preferably in gunmetal grey, the silk as smooth as an oil slick.

I regret selling a hand painted silk ‘20s coat trimmed in monkey fur, by Paul Poiret but it’s gone to a very good home.

My ultimate would be one something important from Marilyn Monroe’s personal wardrobe: perhaps the simple silk dress she wore to marry Arthur Miller or the little black dress she wore to the press conference with Lawrence Olivier, to discuss “The Prince and the Showgirl”. The shoulder strap broke, almost causing a riot as the men surged forwards – that’s a special dress, I’d like to have that one in my collection please.


Is vintage clothing popular in the city that you live in?

Absolutely! Melbourne is a very vintage city, with a fine appreciation of history and culture. I’m from Sydney originally and I often get asked if I would open a shop there, but Melbourne is Circa’s home. Sometimes I fantasize about moving my shop to the UK though.


Who are some of your favorite style icons?

Marilyn Monroe is my number one: she inspired me to dress in the first era that I loved, the ‘50s and the fashions of the era suits her so well. While we’re talking about Hollywood stars, I adore Carole Lombard and Lauren Bacall.

For modern times I love Tziporah Salamon: you don’t have to be famous to be fabulous.

My current style icon is Myrtle Snow from American Horror Story: Coven. Played by Frances Conroy to perfection.

Style has nothing to do with being young or beautiful, or rich or successful: it can be in all of us.


What are your favorite vintage movies, music and television programs?

My favourite films are “Some Like it Hot” and “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes” – ah, yes, a Marilyn fan. I’ll happily sit through anything designed by my favourite costume designers though, especially Hollywood Golden Era. 

 

Thanks to Nicole for participating in The Style Council! To check out my recent picks of favorite vintage clothing items from Circa Vintage Clothing check out this blog post: Lulu's Favorite Finds from Circa Vintage Clothing 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice # 6 Award Winner

Stay tuned for Style Council interviews with all of the winners of the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Awards, as well as Style Council interviews with my 2014 Lulu's Online Vintage Clothing Store Recommendation winners.

 

If you are interested in participating in The Style Council please contact me at lulusvintagepdx (at) gmail.com

This post was originally published on March 21, 2014.

The Style Council! Carrie Moriarity of The Magnolia Collection

The Style CouncilLuluComment

Please tell us your name and what city and state you live in.

Carrie Moriarity of Omaha, Nebraska. Carrie is the owner of The Magnolia Collection

The Magnolia Collection placed fifth in the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Awards for Best Online Vintage Clothing Store

 

Please tell us a little about yourself. Hobbies, interests and work outside of the vintage world.

I’m an avid gardener in summer and hoarder of seed catalogs in winter.  I play tennis and have been taking belly dance lessons for a few years.  I recently started sewing again and have produced, with varying degrees of success, a few dresses made from vintage patterns.

 

What got you into vintage clothing? How long have you been collecting vintage clothing for?

Aside from a few wonderful family pieces, my first real introduction to the lure of vintage clothing came in the form of an emerald green 1940s hat in a shop in Pennsylvania in the 80s.  I fell in love with it but my mom convinced me not to get it as it was impractical.  I still regret not getting that hat!  In 2001 I was transferred to Dallas TX and started to pick up a few pieces here and there and then in 2003 I was transferred to Pennsylvania and discovered a great country auction and that’s when I really started to collect. 


How long have you been selling vintage clothing for? What avenues have you sold your vintage merchandise through? Your own web store, Etsy, eBay, Vintage Shows, Antique Malls, Flea Markets, Your Own Brick & Mortar?

I made the switch from antique silver and china over to vintage clothing in 2006.  I sell primarily on ebay but do have my own website which I am currently working on redesigning.  I have a very small presence on etsy under the name Magnolia Boudoir and also sell in an antique mall in the historic Old Market in downtown Omaha.

How much do you incorporate vintage clothing and accessories into your everyday wardrobe?

I wear vintage clothing about twice a week in the winter and almost daily in the summer since my summer wardrobe is more extensive.  Even on days when I wear contemporary outfits many of my accessories: purse, jewelry, umbrella  or coat are typically vintage.  I’d guess almost every single day I’m sporting something vintage!

Do you source most of your vintage locally or do you shop online or travel to other cities and states to do your shopping?

When I first started selling I was still working a corporate job that included a lot of travel so I was very lucky to shop all over the country.  Since I am now a full time vintage clothing seller, and am not traveling on an expense account, I tend to stay a bit closer to home.  I do have two people in other parts of the country who do buy for me and of course I shop when on vacation, much to my husband’s chagrin!

What do you feel differentiates your store from others?

That’s a tough question!  For years I really tried to emulate some of the other fantastic vintage shops.  Over time The Magnolia Collection has evolved into a shop that has something for everyone, from the vintage beginner to designers and museums.  I love the look of curated shops that specialize in niche eras or really magnificent high end items but that’s not who I am.  I love that my offerings range from late 1800s to the 80s and that they tend to be really affordable.  I hope that my customers see The Magnolia Collection as a friendly and knowledgeable place that is very accessible and without any sort of rarified airs that could be intimidating to those new to the vintage scene.

How do you feel the vintage selling market has evolved since you first began selling?

I think social media is probably the biggest difference.  When I first started in 2006 all I had to worry about was writing great descriptions – now I spend a significant amount of time each week making sure I have a presence on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and try to keep my own blog going   http://avintagelife-themagnoliacollection.blogspot.com/  The social media aspect of the job is important and it’s one we didn’t have years ago but it certainly takes time to manage.

How do you feel the vintage buying market has evolved since you first began selling?

It’s much tougher now.  Not only is there more competition but I think so many television shows have convinced people that anything old is valuable.

Do you have any advice that you would like to offer people just starting out selling vintage clothing online?

Study!  I think every successful vintage seller is successful because of their knowledge.  For someone just starting out I’d recommend picking a specific era or type of clothing (for the first year I only sold vintage lingerie) and learn everything you can about that niche.

Do you have any advice for people who are just starting out shopping for vintage clothing online?

First and foremost, know your current measurements.  I think that vintage sizing can be really confusing to new buyers but any good seller will include measurements.  Secondly, find a seller who has a great track record and provides detailed descriptions and lots of photos!  Never feel bad about asking questions.


What are your favorite eras of clothing for wearing? What are your favorite eras of clothing for admiring?

I adore 40s suits and knit skirt sets, 50s full skirted dresses and in the summer I wear a lot of 60s/70s preppy  Lilly Pulitzer and Vested Gentress. 

A look I love but don’t wear are the wiggle dresses from the 50s and early 60s.

 What do you like about clothing from these eras?

They are all so feminine and they’re also very polished and complete looks.  Today’s styles are all about separates which can look choppy and incongruous – there is something attractive about a complete head to toe look that suits and dresses afford.


Who are some of your favorite vintage designers?

The usual suspects I’m sure!  Dior, Givenchy, Schiaparelli but for day dresses I also really love Vicky Vaughn, Toni Todd and of course as mentioned Vested Gentress.


Who are some of your favorite modern designers?

I’m still a huge fan of current Dior and Givenchy but also Ralph Lauren, Marchesa and Valentino whose reinterpretation of 60s mod meets preppy is right up my alley!


What would be your ultimate vintage fashion find?

There are a number of things on my vintage bucket list!!  One that’s been there from the beginning is a fabulously dramatic Ceil Chapman ball gown.


Is vintage clothing popular in the city that you live in?

In the last three years or so quite a few vintage clothing shops have opened up but I rarely see anyone wearing vintage here. 


Who are some of your favorite style icons?

Katherine Hepburn, Jackie Kennedy and Grace Kelly spring to mind.  While all three had different styles they all had such amazing poise.  They also combine my two favorite styles which are preppy/sporty and 50s feminine.


What are your favorite vintage movies, music and television programs?

I Love Lucy and The Dick Van Dyke Show are still favorites.  It’s hard to pin down my favorite vintage movies but anything with Katherine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy or anything with Cary Grant!  As for music, my favorites would definitely include Billy Holiday and Frank Sinatra.


Do you collect any other types of collectibles or antiques?

I do still collect English and American silver – flatware and napkin rings mostly which is odd since I don’t host fancy dinner parties!  Antique oil paintings are another thing I can’t pass up but I am running out of wall space.

 

Thanks to Carrie for participating in The Style Council! To check out my recent picks of favorite vintage clothing items from The Magnolia Collection check out this blog post: Lulu's Favorite Find from The Magnolia Collection 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice #5 Award Winner

 

Stay tuned for Style Council interviews with all of the winners of the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Awards, as well as Style Council interviews with my 2014 Lulu's Online Vintage Clothing Store Recommendation winners.

 

If you are interested in participating in The Style Council please contact me at lulusvintagepdx (at) gmail.com

This post was originally published on March 18, 2014.

The Syle Council! Amy Ernst Mayberry of Viva Vintage Clothing

The Style CouncilLuluComment

Amy Ernst Mayberry of Chicago, Illinois. Amy is the owner of Viva Vintage Clothing.

Viva Vintage Clothing placed fourth in the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Awards for Best Online Vintage Clothing Store.

Since Amy's store is the recipient of both the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Award and my 2014 Lulu's Personal Top 25 Vintage Clothing Websites I am dividing her interview into two parts. Posted below is Part I. Stay tuned in the future for Part II.


Please tell us a little about yourself. Hobbies, interests and work outside of the vintage world.


I have been enjoying tap dancing for about 5 years now.  I love it: it can be a great workout and it always reminds me of 1930s and 40s Hollywood movies!  I have been volunteering when I can with the development stages of a new food co-op here in Chicago, for about a year or so--we hope to get it off the ground soon.  But, my all time favorite, can’t-do-without-it hobby is reading, across many genres.  You will never see me without a (real, paper) book!


What got you into vintage clothing? How long have you been collecting vintage clothing for?


I was always interested in color and fabric, even as a young child, possibly because my mom is an accomplished home-sewer—a skill I dearly wish I had acquired!  Once I was old enough to choose my own clothing, I did my best to find unique items, even in the suburban shopping mall, but once I discovered vintage I was entranced!  Digging through the thrifts in high school (the late 1980s), I found fun, inexpensive vintage pieces, and I’ve never looked back.  My senior homecoming formal dress was from the 1950s—and much prettier than anything modern I could have found!  In college, I began working for a wonderful lady who owned a vintage clothing store, and learned so much from her.  After working with her and eventually managing her shop for a few years, she decided to close, and I decided to take the plunge; in 1998 I opened my first vintage shop.

How much do you incorporate vintage clothing and accessories into your everyday wardrobe?

I try to wear something vintage every day, sometimes head to toe in one era, sometimes mixing eras, and sometimes wearing mostly modern clothing with vintage accessories—whatever my mood is that day—and, weather permitting!

 

What are your favorite eras of clothing for wearing? What are your favorite eras of clothing for admiring?

I admire the elegant lines of clothing from the mid-1910s and also the 1930s, but the curvier shape of late 1940s to early 1960s clothing suits my body type best, so that is the majority of what I wear regularly.  Also, it is sturdier, on average, and therefore easier to wear and care for.

 

What do you like about clothing from these eras?

My favorite late 1940s to early 1960s clothing has a feminine silhouette, that works to enhance, not disguise the shape of the wearer.  I especially love the whimsical cotton print dresses and blouses from the 1950s, everything from colorful florals to abstract/atomic patterns—and of course, novelty prints!  The rise of classic American sportswear in this era also means well-made separates that are versatile and easy to wear, but I am always a sucker for a good dress!  One-piece dressing, with a cardigan for warmth, and of course some vintage jewelry, and maybe a hat…..


Who are some of your favorite vintage designers?

To name just a few: Claire McCardell and Bonnie Cashin for clothing that a real woman would really want to wear, Luis Estevéz and  Dorothy O’Hara for figure-flattering and fabulous cocktail dresses,  Charles James for over-the-top glamorous ball gowns and Alfred Shaheen for resortwear, of course!  Bes-Ben for hats. 


Who are some of your favorite modern designers?

Jean-Paul Gaultier, Alexander McQueen, Anna Sui and Miuccia Prada.


What would be your ultimate vintage fashion find?

A stash of circa 1930s vintage wide-leg pants, in many fabrics and colors, in my size, naturally.


Is vintage clothing popular in the city that you live in?

Yes, I would say that Chicago people do mix in a bit of vintage here and there, mostly the younger, hipper crowd.  Seeing someone sporting a vintage bag or coat is more common than a head to toe vintage look.  Also, the rockabilly scene here is very vibrant, and vintage is a huge part of that. 

 

Who are some of your favorite style icons?

Jean Harlow, Norma Shearer, Ava Gardner, Grace Kelly, Edith Head and Barbara Hulanicki of Biba.


What are your favorite vintage movies, music and television programs?

Movies: Ball of Fire, Gold Diggers of 1933 (and other Warner pre-Code films), It Happened One Night, The Women, and The Best of Everything (for the clothes), to name a few.  Boardwalk Empire and Downton Abbey have been recent TV favorites for the costumes. 


Do you collect any other types of collectibles or antiques?

My largest and most out-of-control collection is definitely vintage hats: I sometimes open up a hatbox and say, "Oh, I'd forgotten all about YOU!”   But, I also have a fairly large collection of vintage cat figurines and wacky vintage barware.

 

Thanks to Amy for participating in The Style Council! To check out my recent picks of favorite vintage clothing items from Viva Vintage Clothing check out this blog post: Lulu's Favorite Finds from Viva Vintage Clothing 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice # 4 Award Winner

Amy has participated in The Style Council before. Click here to see her previous interview that was posted in September of 2009!

Stay tuned for Style Council interviews with all of the winners of the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Awards, as well as Style Council interviews with my 2014 Lulu's Online Vintage Clothing Store Recommendation winners.

 

If you are interested in participating in The Style Council please contact me at lulusvintagepdx (at) gmail.com

This post was originally published on March 14, 2014.

The Style Council! Andi Shelton of Raleigh Vintage

The Style CouncilLuluComment

Andi Shelton of Raleigh, North Carolina. Andi is the co-owner of Raleigh Vintage.

Raleigh Vintage placed third in the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Awards for Best Online Vintage Clothing Store.

Since Andi's store is the recipient of both the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Award and my 2014 Lulu's Personal Top 25 Vintage Clothing Websites I am dividing her interview into two parts. Posted below is Part I. Stay tuned in the future for Part II.

 

Please tell us your name and what city and state you live in.

Andi Shelton, living and working in Raleigh, North Carolina.    I own Raleigh Vintage along with Isaac Panzarella  (my partner in business and love of my life).

 

Please tell us a little about yourself. Hobbies, interests and work outside of the vintage world.

Although time spent NOT thinking about or working on vintage is extremely limited, I do enjoy some good food and drink with friends.   I love travelling and exploring new places.  A good art museum or used bookshop are some of my favorite places to spend an afternoon.  I worked in archaeology before entering the vintage world full-time and I still enjoy dabbling in that.  I have lots of things still on my ‘to do’ list though:  cheese making, learn to knit, garden more, can more food (yes, I like canning), volunteer more, do more DIY projects, etc.

 

What got you into vintage clothing? How long have you been collecting vintage clothing for?

Like a lot of vintage clothing sellers, I grew up surrounded by vintage.  When I was young, I spent summers with my grandparents and have wonderful memories of playing dress up in all of the old clothes and jewels I found in the bottom drawers and trunks in their house (including my grandmother’s 1931 prom dress that I still have).   I really got into wearing vintage clothing in college as both a statement of my individuality and a statement of my meager student budget. Then, around 2008, I had the good fortune to work at a friend’s vintage consignment shop.  It eventually closed, but Isaac and I were lucky enough to acquire some of the inventory and our ‘collecting’ phase began.

 

How much do you incorporate vintage clothing and accessories into your everyday wardrobe?

Although I’m not the ‘head-to-toe” vintage type, I definitely wear some piece of vintage ever day.  I particularly like wearing vintage jewelry with modern outfits or carrying a vintage bag or wearing a vintage coat.  For me, wearing a mix of vintage and modern is both comfortable and easy to show others (skeptics) that vintage truly can be worked into any wardrobe without looking like a costume. 

 

What are your favorite eras of clothing for wearing? What are your favorite eras of clothing for admiring?

Oh, this is tough since I can find something I love from every era for both wearing and admiring.  I love the attention to detail found in 1930s pieces.  And, the Chanel-style 1920s chic daywear always makes me swoon.  But, I’ve found that late 1960s silhouettes fit my body-type best.

 

Who are some of your favorite vintage designers?

Chanel (1920s)…of course

Dior (early years)…of course

Schaiparelli…of course

Charles James

Halston

 


Who are some of your favorite modern designers?

I have to confess (and don’t hate me please) that I’m not a modern label hound.  I find that my ‘favorite’ designers change from season to season depending on their collections.

 

What would be your ultimate vintage fashion find?

Well, a 1920s Chanel outfit would be amazing and I wouldn’t say no to a 1930s Schaiparelli dress!  But, I’ve already found one of my holy grail pieces.  A few years ago I found a late 1920s/early 1930s Callot Soeurs dress with the original French tag still attached!  No lie.

 


Is vintage clothing popular in the city that you live in?

Sadly, no, vintage clothing isn’t very popular at all here in Raleigh.  There are just a few individuals who wear vintage, very few brick-and-mortar vintage shops, and no real vintage community.   I’m hoping there is change in the air on this front though as several of us local online vintage sellers are banding together and plotting ways to foster and grow our vintage community.

 


Who are some of your favorite style icons?

For a casual look, definitely Jane Birkin and, for a chic-glamorous look, Wallis Simpson.

 


What are your favorite vintage movies, music and television programs?

I’m a huge fan of The Woman (1939).  I watch it several times a year and drool over the fashion every time!  And, I’m addicted to Downton Abbey. 

 


Do you collect any other types of collectibles or antiques?

Not really.  I usually just buy what I fall in love with and also fits the budget - that makes for some very eclectic décor for sure.

 

 

I’ve really enjoyed chatting with all of you! 

XOXO,

Andi

 

Thanks to Andi for participating in The Style Council! To check out my recent picks of favorite vintage clothing items from Raleigh Vintage check out this blog post: Lulu's Favorite Finds from Raleigh Vintage 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice # 3 Award Winner

Stay tuned for Style Council interviews with all of the winners of the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Awards, as well as Style Council interviews with my 2014 Lulu's Online Vintage Clothing Store Recommendation winners.

 

If you are interested in participating in The Style Council please contact me at lulusvintagepdx (at) gmail.com

This post was originally published on March 12, 2014.

The Style Council! Liz Burn of Figure 8 Studio

The Style CouncilLuluComment
3-6-14.jpg

Liz Burn of Seattle, Washington. Liz is the owner of Figure 8 Studio.

Figure 8 Studio tied for first place in the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Awards for Best Online Vintage Clothing Store.

 

Please tell us a little about yourself. Hobbies, interests and work outside of the vintage world.

Live music, gathering with friends, traveling, cooking, reading books and playing percussion. We also volunteer in several community organizations including our neighborhood food bank.

 
What got you into vintage clothing? How long have you been collecting vintage clothing for?


I have been wearing vintage since I was 14 years old, began collecting since college in NYC in the 80s and working  at YSL's Manhattan offices peaked my interest in the fashion runways.
 
How long have you been selling vintage clothing for?


Since the early 90s when a friend suggested we thin out our closets at the flea market. Later I ventured into festivals, shows and music venues. Two promoters buddies gave me permission to have a table and rack at their shows.

What avenues have you sold your vintage merchandise through?  Your own web store, Etsy, eBay, Vintage Shows, Antique Malls, Flea Markets, Your Own Brick & Mortar?

Online I began at Ebay. Figure 8 Studio was one of Babylon Mall's first stores. Deb Whitten, is a wonderful webmistress. I recommend Babylon to anyone starting out. I still sell there, also on Etsy as well as my own web store Pete and Hall Stuart-Lovell of Dungeness Communications are the best.  

How much do you incorporate vintage clothing and accessories into your everyday wardrobe?

I always try to include vintage in my wardrobe but I am a casual gal these days. The days I walked for miles in heels are over but be it jewelry, a scarf, handbag, Im mad about vintage sunglasses...always something vintage.

Do you source most of your vintage locally or do you shop online or travel to other cities and states to do your shopping?

All of the above. I always include vintage shopping in my vacations. I make lists of the best vintage stores in the cities I'm visiting. No vacation is complete without some level of shopping for vintage. I also love vintage fashion shows.

What do you feel differentiates your store from others?

There are so many wonderful vintage stores on the web,  we love psychedelic 60s hippie bohemian and Hawaiian; both men and women's garments. We  have local - by appointment only - clients we cater to for special occasions. We like to keep our store simple, easy to navigate and pride in restoring, disclosure and passionate about the care of vintage textiles.

How do you feel the vintage selling market has evolved since you first began selling?

Today's vintage community has access to wonderful blogs, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram...all sorts of venues where sellers are able to showcase their stock and buyers can easily find them. When we began selling we didn’t have anything like it and if we did, like blogging, it was very basic. Now there is an entire industry created just for bloggers. It is amazing how far we've come.

Do you have any advice that you would like to offer people just starting out selling vintage clothing online?

Place yourself in your buyer's shoes. Measurements and condition are paramount. Don’t forget to measure shoulders and from shoulder to waist.
Arm yourself with a good reference library. Some of my favorites are; Julie Parker's Fabric Reference Series. RN & WPL Encyclopedia, 'Fashion, A History from the 18th to the 20th Century', Fairchild's Dictionary of Textiles, Fairchild's Dictionary of Fashion, The Aloha Shirt, Hawaiian Shirt Designs.
Finally, join vintage fashion groups. The Vintage Fashion Guild and many other vintage fashion groups on facebook with members who are just as passionate and happy to help.
 
Do you have any advice for people who are just starting out shopping for vintage clothing online?


Don’t be afraid to ask questions specially when you see "vintage condition" with no other details. Request clear close up of labels and flaws. I also recommend asking for care instructions, if possible, and try to never throw vintage in the washing machine, specially if you own one with an agitator.

 
What are your favorite eras of clothing for wearing? What are your favorite eras of clothing for admiring? 


I love wearing bohemian, easy flowing dresses. Im a hippie at heart. I admire the Deco era, the roaring 20s and 40s. My son is more of the designer clothes horse and he wears it well, he is 6' 6" tall, he also collects vintage cufflinks. 

 What do you like about clothing from these eras?

It is difficult to say as I love everything from the 20s to the 50s New Look but the workmanship of some of the pieces from the 20s is amazing. The beading...even the fringes. I owned a silk 20s fringed dress that weighted close to 15 lbs. The stitching was impeccable and all done by hand.   

 
Who are some of your favorite vintage designers?


To wear personally; Halston, Betsey Johnson, Norma Kamali, Lily Pulitzer and Pucci. 
Admire Emma Domb, Schiaperelli.
 
Who are some of your favorite modern designers?


Alexander McQueen. 

 
What would be your ultimate vintage fashion find?


My Holy Grail is an Emilio Pucci 60s dress.

 
Is vintage clothing popular in the city that you live in?


Yes and all ages. I recently stopped to chat with an older lady who was wearing the cutest Pulitzer dress.

Who are some of your favorite style icons?

Rita Lydig, Clara Bow, Jackie Kennedy, Coco Chanel and  Princess Grace.  

 
What are your favorite vintage movies, music and television programs?


Miracle In The Rain, Roman Holiday, Valley of The Dolls, Barefoot In The Park, The Bad Seed. I collect vinyl from the 50s and love jazz.
Television shows; That Girl, I Love Lucy. We had great viewing parties for Dynasty in the 80s!
 
Do you collect any other types of collectibles or antiques?


Yes. Victorian to Art Deco furniture. Peter Max art and music posters. I recently found a vintage Turkish tapestry with Jim Morrison's face I am hanging in the bedroom *swoon!*

 

Thanks to Liz for participating in The Style Council! To check out my recent picks of favorite vintage clothing items from Figure 8 Studio check out this blog post: Lulu's Favorite Finds from Figure 8 Studio 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Tie for # 1 Award Winner

Stay tuned for Style Council interviews with all of the winners of the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Awards, as well as Style Council interviews with my 2014 Lulu's Online Vintage Clothing Store Recommendation winners.

If you are interested in participating in The Style Council please contact me at lulusvintagepdx (at) gmail.com

This post was originally published on March 6, 2014.

The Style Council! Maggie Wilds of DeniseBrain

The Style CouncilLuluComment

Maggie Wilds of Spokane, Washington. Maggie is both the model and the seller at her DeniseBrain online vintage store and Etsy store, and is a very knowledgeable blogger over on her blog.

DeniseBrain tied for first place in the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Awards for Best Online Vintage Clothing Store.

Maggie has so thoughtfully and thoroughly answered the interview questions that I am dividing her interview into two parts. Posted below is Part I. Stay tuned in the future for Part II.


You use your store to do fund raising for causes that you believe in. How many years have you been doing that for? Please share with us some of the charities that you have raised money for.

It means a lot to me to use my business as a way to let others know about and contribute to causes. Some that I’ve promoted since 2004 are Women for Women International, Feeding America, Conservation International, Red Cross Disaster Relief, Global Giving, Doctors Without Borders, Living Beyond Breast Cancer, Conservation Northwest and Save the Manatee Club. Almost everyone knows I am in love with manatees. Last year I was given the honor of raising money for a tracking monitor for rehabilitated and re-released manatees in Belize. I could not have raised the rather large sum of money by myself, but my customers came through, as they always do.

You are a professional French horn player. Do you wear vintage clothing very often when you are performing?

I sometimes wear vintage clothing while performing (when it meets the dress code for the concert) but I must say that it can really be hard on performance clothes, so I don’t always risk my favorite vintage. I like to have something vintage on every day, so if nothing else I’ll probably have vintage shoes or jewelry on while performing. I also have a collection of vintage clothing and accessories featuring horns.

I really enjoy your Themes where you pair images of you modelling your clothing and accessories and set them to music. How long have you been doing that for?

Thank you! I began to do those in about 2007. They started out as silent, but ended up with music. Here are some of my favorites: http://www.denisebrain.com/denisebrainthemefav1.html

You compiled the ever helpful VFG Fabric Resource. What other projects do you do or have you done for the VFG?

I have worked on the VFG Site Committee since 2007, and among other things this creative committee comes up with our weekly Fashion Parades and our spring and fall Vintage Inspirations. I am also looking after the VFG Fashion Parade page on Facebook. The Fabric Resource is a big ongoing project, one that I plan to be working on for many years to come.

What got you into vintage clothing? How long have you been collecting vintage clothing for?

I liked to raid my parents’ closets to supplement my mainly homemade wardrobe as a young teenager. In my home there were items dating from the Victorian era through the 1960s, a real trove...I loved mixing in unique pieces. I frequented the 2nd-hand and vintage stores near my high school in Seattle, ca. 1974-78, a great time and place for vintage. From an early age I thought of clothes as a way to express my (rather shy) self.


How much do you incorporate vintage clothing and accessories into your everyday wardrobe?

I wear a piece or two (or five or six!) of vintage every day. Many of my basic clothes are vintage, as well as stand-out showy items. As I type this I am wearing a 1980s black sweater knit pencil skirt along with an Escada blazer in bright pink cotton sateen from the same decade. I have a rhinestone comb in my hair that dates from the 1940s.

What are your favorite eras of clothing for wearing? What are your favorite eras of clothing for admiring?

I wear a wide range of vintage decades, my favorite being 1940s. I also wear a fair amount of 1950s, 60s and 70s clothes. I can admire any and all eras of vintage clothing, although I have a special weakness for the years 1912, 1939 and 1946.

What do you like about clothing from these eras?

I am very fond of the fit of pre-New Look 40s, which feels natural on me, and I also appreciate the colors, novelty prints, and interesting details. Late 1940s to early 60s full skirts usually flatter me. How does 1970s get in there? I like to have everyday clothing that I am not afraid to wash and wear, and 70s clothing can have great colors and prints.

Who are some of your favorite vintage designers?

Claire McCardell and Bonnie Cashin for dressing women as they would dress themselves, in dashing, supremely creative and beautiful designs in which you can actually move.

Who are some of your favorite modern designers?

Jean Paul Gaultier, Christian Lacroix, Miuccia Prada

What would be your ultimate vintage fashion find?

May I have 3 wishes? Anything by Paul Poiret, an original Dior New Look item, anything by Charles James. I always joke that I want Peace on Earth, because anything by Charles James is much farther out of reach!

Is vintage clothing popular in the city that you live in?

Spokane is not like Portland, but you do see vintage clothing popping up here and there. I often get positive comments when I wear vintage here.

Who are some of your favorite style icons?

Audrey Hepburn, Diana Rigg, Isabella Blow, Bjork
I would like to be as fearless and brilliant in my style as Isabella Blow, as fearless and enigmatic as Bjork, as fearless and cool as Diana Rigg, and as fearless and elegant as Audrey Hepburn.

Do you collect any other types of collectibles or antiques?

Fabric swatch books, my family’s photos going back to the 19th century, Chelsea Garden by Spode (which was my mother’s china and now is mine), ephemera from the pockets of my vintage finds, ticket stubs from events I’ve attended since I was 14.

Thanks to Maggie for participating in The Style Council! To check out my recent picks of favorite vintage clothing items from DeniseBrain check out these blog posts: Lulu's Favorite Finds from DeniseBrain 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Tie for # 1 Award Winner: Part I , Part II , Part III

Stay tuned for Style Council interviews with all of the winners of the 2014 Lulu's Vintage People's Choice Awards, as well as Style Council interviews with my 2014 Lulu's Online Vintage Clothing Store Recommendation winners. I will be announcing the winners tomorrow!

If you are interested in participating in The Style Council please contact me at lulusvintagepdx (at) gmail.com

This post was originally published on March 3, 2014.

David John Haskins of Bauhaus and Love & Rockets at Lulu's Vintage Store in Portland, Oregon

The Style Council, Manly MondaysLuluComment

David John Haskins of Bauhaus and Love & Rockets came into the store yesterday.
He had been in the store previously. This time around I said to him can I ask you a question and he said yes. I said when you were in the store last time I was trying to figure out who you were. I asked were you in an English band in the 1980's? And he said yes. I said I was trying to figure out which one...Pet Shop Boys, and then my mind went blank for any other 80's bands that I am a fan of. He said I was in Bauhaus and Love & Rockets. I said oh yes, I love both of those bands! He bought a piece of jewelry from me. I then asked if I could take his photo and have his autograph and he kindly obliged.
He is handsome, stylish, nice and polite!
Often times when it's slow at the store I crank up the volume on the speakers and rock out to Bela Lugosi's Dead, No New Tales To Tell, Ball of Confusion, and So Alive.
Today's encounter was such a great way to make my day!

This post was originally published on January 23, 2014.

How To Shop For Vintage Part II : Kismet, Fate, Serendipity in the Vintage Clothing & Accessory World

The Style CouncilLuluComment

Call it what you will, when you find a vintage piece that you love and it fits you perfectly it is kismet, fate, serendipity all rolled into one.

Often times when you are a teenager or in your early twenties everything that you try on fits and looks good on you. As you grow older your body changes. We have to adapt our style and what we wear to flatter our changing figures. This is why as an adult if you find something that you love and it fits you, you should make the purchase. It is highly unlikely that you will ever come across that same vintage garment in the same color, pattern, cut and most especially size. There aren't multiple of the garment in each size XS - XL hanging on the rack, folded up in boxes in the backstock room, they aren't being manufactured in China and shipped over to replenish empty racks.

Sometimes if you are lucky you will find a vintage item similar to one that you own and have loved to death. The new vintage item comes into your life to replace the old one just in time. That is what happened to Anne pictured above. She had a vintage coat similar to the one she bought from me and is wearing in the photo. Her old vintage coat was falling apart so it was kismet,fate, serendipitous that she found a similar new vintage coat at my store.

This post was originally published on December 31, 2013.

How To Shop For Vintage Part I : Sizing & How To Take Your Measurements

The Style CouncilLuluComment

Shopping For Vintage Clothing At Brick and Mortar Vintage Stores.

When shopping at a brick and mortar vintage store for vintage clothing don’t look at the size on the clothing label (clothing sizes have drastically changed over the decades [For example a vintage size 16 will be equivalent to around a modern size 10]). Look instead for the measurements on the tag that the store has provided. If the store hasn't provided the measurements on the label you can request for them to take them for you. If they aren't busy some store owners will be happy to point out items on their racks that might work for you.

Don't be offended if you pick up an item of clothing and want to try it on and the owner of the store hesitates. Most owners of vintage stores are very knowledgeable about the sizes and fit of their clothing. They are not trying to offend you when deferring you away from an item. If you oppose a store owner and try something on against their wishes and end up ripping, tearing, or ruining a garment you may be held responsible for paying for the total cost of the garment or the cost of the repairs that need to be made.

With that in mind...KNOW YOUR MEASUREMENTS.

Ladies please take note that your bra size is not your chest size! The measurement for your bra is taken under your breasts. For example if you are a 36 C this does not mean that your chest measures 36”, it is actually larger. To take your chest measurement measure around the fullest part of your chest.

Women used to wear their clothing at their natural waistlines, which is higher than most women now wear their clothing.  To take your waist measurement measure the smallest part of your waist.

To take your hip measurement measure the fullest part of your hips approximately 7-8” below the waist.

 

Whether shopping in the store or online you will want to allow yourself a little wiggle room in your clothing.

 

Shopping For Vintage Clothing Online.

When shopping for vintage online you will need to know a lot of additional measurements such as shoulder width, arm length, inseam, etc...

Sellers vary in how they list sizes and measurements. Check their policies to see how they do things and to see what tips they give in terms of getting the right fit. Often times online sellers will recommend that you measure for comparison a piece of clothing that you already own, like the fit of, and is a similar cut and style to what you are looking to purchase.

Be sure to get as many measurements as possible from the seller before making your purchase. When shopping online don’t buy clothing that you think will barely fit!

Be sure to ask questions before making your purchases online. It is common for both online and brick mortar vintage stores to not accept returns or exchanges.

 

About Lulu

These are all tips that spring to mind from my years of experience in vintage selling, buying, collecting, and blogging. My first experiences of selling vintage clothing were at vintage markets and an antique mall in the mid-nineties. My first brick and mortar store was in Portland, Oregon from 2001-2003. I have had the current incarnation of my store here in Portland since October 2010. I sold vintage clothing online on my own website from 2006-2010. In 2014 keep your eyes peeled for Lulu's Vintage store to return to selling online! I have been blogging about vintage on Lulu's Vintage blog since January 2006.

What are some sizing & measurement tips that you have learned from buying or selling vintage clothing? Please leave a comment and share your advice!

This post was originally published on December 30, 2013.

Miss Ellie

The Style CouncilLuluComment

When riding the streetcar I have often admired this lady's accessorizing. Recently the only seat available in the front section of the streetcar was across from her. I sat down and told her that I always enjoyed seeing what she was wearing and I asked if I could take her photo. She said that I could. After I took a few photos we started chatting and she told me all sorts of fascinating things about herself. When she spoke her soul shined through her quiet slightly accented voice.

She introduced herself as Miss Ellie. She said that's not my real name but, it's what people call me. Her real name is Eleanor.

She has traveled to Hawaii quite a bit and picked up her habit of wearing flowers from over there. She said that when she goes into Nordstrom the sales people will say here comes the flower lady.

She said that you can make yourself happy, that happiness comes from within. I told her that I most heartily agree.

She told me I love wings, wheels, and water. Meaning that she loves to travel. She has three children- one lives here in Portland, another in England and the other in the Dominican Republic. She lived for awhile down in the Dominican Republic. She goes to a different country in Europe each year. She has visited all of the European countries.

She was born in South Africa. She had a farm there where her and her husband raised thorough bred horses. They moved to the US in 1985.

When I asked where she was heading to she said she was going to go to the mall and then she might head out to the airport. She said she likes going there because there are shops on one side and restaurants on the other.

Miss Ellie is who I hope to be when I am an older lady: well traveled and well accessorized.

This post was originally published on December 3, 2013.

Lulu's Vintage Customer in Vintage Coat

The Style CouncilLuluComment

Anne of Portland wearing her new purchase from Lulu's Vintage.

Anne told me that she has a coat very similar to this that she had owned for a long time and that her old coat was beginning to wear out. She was very happy to find this as a replacement.

This coat is cute and cozy- perfect for the cold weather that we have been having!

This post was originally published on November 22, 2013.

Lulu's Vintage Customers

The Style CouncilLuluComment

Recently I started keeping track of where people are visiting the store from.
The tally shows that from September 26 - October 26, 2013 I had people visit from 33 different States (Oregon included), and 14 different countries (including the USA).

Here's the breakdown of the stats...

285 people visited from other states in the USA (visitors from Oregon are not included).

ARIZONA 9
 

4 Phoenix

3 Tucson

2 general

CALIFORNIA 84

40 San Francisco

4 Sacramento

3 Southern California

10 San Diego

12 LA

2 Santa Barbara

3 Oakland

3 San Jose

2 Santa Cruz

1 Berkley  

2 Monterrey

2 Burbank

COLORADO 11

7 Denver

 4 general

FLORIDA 2

1 general

1 Orlando

GEORGIA 3

3 Atlanta

HAWAII 1

1 Maui

IDAHO 1
 

1 Boise

ILLINOIS 10

10 Chicago

INDIANA 4

 2 general

2 Indianapolis

KANSAS 2
 

2 Wichita

LOUISIANA 2

2 general

MARYLAND 4
 

1 Annapolis

3 Baltimore

MASSACHUSETTS 4
 

4 Boston

MICHIGAN 3

 1 general

2 Detroit

MINNESOTA 3

3 Minneapolis

MISSOURI 4
 

2 Columbia

2 St. Louis

MONTANA 1
 

1 Helena

NEBRASKA 2
 

2 Omaha

NEVADA 9

3 Reno

6 Las Vegas

NEW JERSEY 7
 

7 general

NEW MEXICO 2

2 Albuquerque

NEW YORK 16

7 Brooklyn

6 NYC

 1 General

1 Buffalo

1 The Bronx

NORTH CAROLINA 5

5 general

OHIO 2

2 general

PENNSYLVANIA 5

2 Philadelphia

 2 general

1 Harrisburg

TENNESSEE 1

1 Nashville

TEXAS 12

3 Austin

1 San Antonio

4 Dallas

4 general

UTAH 5

5 Salt Lake City

VIRGINIA 3

2 Richmond

1 Virginia

WASHINGTON 62

1 Tacoma

49 Seattle

1 Gig Harbor

1 Bellingham

2 Spokane

1 Longview

2 Whidbey Island

2 Marysville

2 Prosser

1 Blaine

WASHINGTON D.C. 4

 4 general

WISCONSIN 2

2 Madison

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

86 people visited from other countries (the USA is not included).

AUSTRIA 1
 

1 Vienna

AUSTRALIA 21

9 general

6 Melbourne

3 Adelaide

2 Queensland

1 Sydney

CANADA 26

3 Victoria

17 Vancouver

2 Toronto

4 Edmonton

DENMARK 2
 

2 general

ENGLAND 13

8 London

3 general

2 Leeds

FRANCE 3

3 general

GERMANY 2
 

1 Nuremberg

1 Hamburg

GREECE 1
 

1 general

HOLLAND 3

3 General

HONG KONG 1
 

1 general

JAPAN 6

5 general

1 Tokyo

NEW ZEALAND 6

 5 general

1 Christchurch

TURKEY 1
 

1 general

This post was originally published on November 14, 2013.

Lulu's Vintage Store in Portland, Oregon 3rd Anniversary

The Style CouncilLuluComment

3 years ago today (October 25, 2010) I opened Lulu's Vintage store in Portland, Oregon. We had our grand opening party on October 23rd.

Posted below are photos from when I first opened the store. It's interesting to look back at these photos and reminisce about cool vintage items that I have sold and forgotten that I had. Also my store was sparse when I first opened. I feel that it still has the clean, colorful and curated look that I aim for, just with more merchandise.

I've sold all the structured purses posted above as well as the majority of the tops and dresses.

My desk area looking sparse and much different than it's current look.

Before I opened I wished to sell vintage postcards of Portland and Oregon. Then soon before I opened I found all these dead stock postcards of Oregon along with the wood and metal postcard holder that they are displayed in.

All of the fabulous tooled leather purses, the rubber cowboy rainboots, and the clogs posted above have sold.

I loved the Roma bag posted above- but, resisted keeping it for myself. It sold soon after I opened the store.

This post was originally published on October 25, 2013.

 

Stylish Customers at Lulu's Vintage Store in Portland, Oregon

The Style CouncilLuluComment

Only a week ago I put out the fantastic GTO racing jacket pictured above.

My friends Don, and Carol (pictured below) came into the store recently. Don said he wanted to try on the racing jacket that was on display on my mannequin in my window. I took the jacket off the mannequin, Don tried it on and it fit like a glove. I am so glad that Don bought this amazing jacket!

Carol bought this fun horse tooled leather belt with horse head belt buckle. She is wearing it over her cute blouse that is made out of a vintage tablecloth.

The lovely lady pictured above bought this incredible ruched and lace trimmed dress from me. She looked beautiful in the dress. She is a singer and a dancer, so the dress is the perfect thing for her to wear when she performs!

This post was originally published on September 10, 2013.