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Thursday, March 23, 2017

· Lindy Hop Vibes ·

Do you have any outfits that will predictably garner the same comments/compliments each time you wear them?  Every time I wear this outfit, without fail, I'll receive some form of "do you dance Lindy Hop?".  It cracks me up how predictable the response is, and I find it fascinating in a way.  Of course, this is veering more into the "teenybopper, soda fountain" style of 1950s than I usually tend towards, so I suppose that makes enough of a difference!

I'm pleased to report that within the last few months, I've finally learned the basics of Lindy Hop though!  Now I don't have to feel like such a lame person when people ask.  Because really- if you're going to dress like this all the time, you really *should* know some moves, right?? ;-)

This outfit is so simple that it's practically boring!  My apologies in advance that my "sewing" blog is so lame.  We'll just categorize this one under "vintage style" instead. ;-)  The skirt is made from one of my favorite fabric lines from Denise Schmidt ever.  It's so vintage-y, what with its printed bias plaid, that I couldn't resist the chance to pick some up on clearance.  It was unfortunately one of those annoying JoAnns "clearance" experiences where the marked down price is more than half the original price, so there's no more savings than if I had purchased at the regular price and used a coupon. (grrrr, I'm really not fond of that new habit of theirs!)  However, I was desperate since I knew I'd regret it if I never purchased any and I picked up just enough for a full dirndl skirt.  I figured it would be a nice basic skirt for my tops and sweaters and I was right!  It's just the right shade to work with several different things in my wardrobe. :-)

I wasn't quite sure how to make it a bit more exciting.... and I really never did figure it out!  So plain and simple it is, and I focused all my extra energy on matching the plaid everywhere.  Because having a simple AND quick project is against my principles. ;-)

The belt came from my all-time favorite source: a local thrift store that sells them for 10¢!  I never really know what I'm looking for in a belt while I'm there but at that price I can just buy lots and see what ends up working with my wardrobe!

(side note- no clue what my foot is doing there, haha!)

My trusty beret finishes off the look- this silly little purchase has inspired so many compliments and I'm constantly amused by that!  I purchased it from Wal-Mart of all places, for $2.  And I wear it All. The. Time.  Of all the amazing vintage hats I have to choose from, this silly little modern beret gets the most mileage of any! :-P

The zipper/pocket combo is hidden in a pleat in the side seam.  After trying on three different skirts, I *finally* figured out my favorite way to assemble this combo! :-)

And as a final nail in the lame seamstress outfit... a store-bought knit top!  Well over a year ago I was seized by a need for some Breton stripe knit tops.  I'm not sure exactly why, but I went with it.  Fortuitously enough, they were in style at that moment and easily available at Target!  I knew I wanted the typical white with black stripes, but this blue/navy combo, the mint/white stripe, and the pink/navy stripe were so tempting!  I solved the dilemma by giving my sister the mint and pink (you know, for convenient "sharing"... ;-)) and keeping the blue and white shirts.  The blue, funnily enough, has become the most loved color!

Heehee!  The thing about (amazing! awesome!) local theaters is that you never can control what they might be billing on the marquee. ;-)  Maybe not my typical choice of offering.... but when you take photos in Oct, I guess you really can't expect much different. ;-)

· photos by Kathryn ·

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

· Estate Sale Score! ·

My apologies for neglecting this blog of late!  Life has been a new kind of busy lately and I'm still working on settling into the new normal :-)  I've had several posts waiting in my drafts folder and I'm super excited to share them!  Of course, I've been enjoying the anticipation of sharing these for the past few months, but that only does so much for you...  This post has been waiting too long to share, but in my defense- it's only just now seasonally appropriate again. ;-)

This was one of our very first vintage dresses that actually *fit*!  We happened upon it at our first estate sale and didn't have the opportunity to try it on before purchasing, but it ended up fitting like a glove. :-)  We've picked up several vintage pieces that we can wear in the past couple years and like I've said before, it really has had a big impact on my personal style and mental process of creating new garments.

It's also funny what I'll wear for the sake of vintage- I'm really not a big fan of navy.  I've never been fond of it and I don't think it's a good color for me.  It's something I'm definitely willing to overlook in the cause of wearing an amazing and fun 1940s dress though!

This dress was also one of my first steps towards building up a tolerance for high, high necklines.  Oh, the mid-century love of choke-y necklines!  I've become quite adjusted to them by now, thankfully. ;-)

Can we just take a moment and admire that awesome neckline?!!  I think it's so clever to use just the smallest hints of a contrasting color to add interest to this dress and the zig-zag neckline gets major cool points in my book.  The overall styling of the dress is just enough different from my usual designs that it is a great inspiration to think outside of my usual rut!

GAH. Miss L Fire wins again.

These great shoes were a purchase from Royal Vintage last year, although they're out of stock now. :-(  RV has more Miss L Fire styles in stock, and the detailing of them is always superb!  I adore the shape of these and that little curlicue is the icing on the cake!

My only caveat is that I think MLF's peep-toe styles fit me better than the closed toe...  These shoes don't live up to an all-day outing, but that just means I have all the more reason to wear them on partial-day outings. ;-)

And then vintage dresses have funny little quirks like this!  A back neck zipper, 5" of seam, then a back waist zipper.  This is a subject I'm pretty ignorant on- anyone know why they did that?  I always thought it was because a zipper going all the way down a back seam ends up bubbling due to the extra bit of bodice length for ease.  Is that true?  I've come across long vintage zippers before, so I don't think that was the deciding factor.  Pipe up if you have any insight!! :-)

Since I don't gravitate towards navy or maroon, I didn't have any accessories in those colors.  I do have lots of black, though!  This 1940s hat was a surprise find at an antique store when I was least expecting it, but it's become such a staple for my 40s looks! 

Sweet scalloped gloves!  And also- why do I ever wear black?? So. Much. Lint. :-P

Until I had this dress, I was under the impression that peplums and larger hips didn't go well together.  Now that I've dispelled that notion, and I'm excited about the options that have opened up! :-)

Dramatic vintage poses are always a good idea.  Until you're posing in front of a public building and then discover that you've attracted an audience of spectators inside.

Ahem. I may or may not have this experience frequently during photoshoots... "Carry on! Nothing to see here!"  Just yet another chapter in The Awkward Life of Lily. ;-)

· photos, as ever, by the remarkable Kathryn! ·

*I received my shoes at a discount in exchange for posting online and all links to RV are affiliates- thanks for helping me indulge my love of shoes! ;-)

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