Sunday, April 25, 2010

A day at the Love Vintage Fair

Last Sunday I went to the Love Vintage Fair with a friend. I've been a few times in previous years and I think each time I have a better time because I know what to expect. I've gotten better at being a more discerning shopper so I'm not sucked in by the prettiness and ignore things like fit, quality, price etc..

I think this year was the best time I've had. It was greatly helped by going with a friend and we'd booked into the Lindy Charm School for Girls workshop in the afternoon, which gave us the morning to browse the stands, then have lunch and do the workshop. I also dressed up, which I haven't done in previous years.
Betty Page pencil dress, black seamed stocking and the black and white patent leather heels I got for my birthday.

The shopping
This year I decided I was not going to buy anything unless it really ticked all the boxes for me. I was fortunate to find three items that fit that criteria. The very first stall we went to I was browsing through some jackets and the shape of one caught my eye. Late 1940s, wasp waist. I tried it on and while the fit was exceptionally good, it was missing a button and the fabric was a black brocade that I felt was a bit "much" for my tastes. As I was putting it back on the hanger, the stall holder mentioned that if the fit was good, I should try the jackets on the rack next to it, as they all came from the same consignment. I had found my 1940s doppelganger! Whoever she was, she had good taste.

I found two jackets that I fell in love with, one black, one grey. First of all, the fit was incredible. The waist of the jacket was perfectly lined up with my waist, instead of being too long in the torso, which is a common problem I have with jackets. The jackets were well constructed and the wasp waist felt like it was hugging my body, rather than straining. They fit well over the bust and hips and the sleeve length was dead on. Both are worsted wool and in excellent condition. I will have to post photos in a follow up post. The price was quite reasonable for the quality. Indeed, I've paid more for a modern suit jacket at DJs and the quality was no where near as good as these vintage jackets.

The other item was a pair of red vintage Nina Ricci sunglasses. I've been after a decent pair of sunglasses for a while now. These caught my eye and I tried them on and first thought they were a bit too bold. However, as I tried on other sunglasses, I kept coming back to them. Talking to the stall holder and my friend, they made me realise that I've been shopping for sunglasses all wrong. I've been leaning towards small delicate frames, which tend to get swamped by the rest of my "look", which is more bold. I tend to wear and lot of black, charcoal and grey and have red hair and wear dark red lipstick, which really needs a bold pair of sunglasses to fit the look. So I bought the red ones. I must admit, I feel very glamorous when I wear them.
The vintage Nina Ricci sunglasses with my hair done from the workshop

The Lindy Charm School for Girls workshop
I saw this on the program and immediately signed up myself and a friend. I first came across the lovely ladies from the Lindy Charm School for Girls at last year's fair when I got them to do my hair in a vintage hairstyle. The workshop was lovely and focused on how to incorporate some vintage glamour and style into our own personal look. It was really nice to see ladies from a wide age range participating. The Lindy Ladies talked us through the various underpinnings that make up vintage styles. We did a lot of work on hairstyles. I finally know how to pin curls and an up sweep. I've read books, web articles, seem YouTube videos, but it seriously doesn't beat having a real person in front of you to tell you that you're turning your hand the wrong way when trying to do an up sweep. The only unfortunate thing was that the Love Vintage website had advertised the workshop as running from 1-3pm, when it was actually running from 1-4pm. My friend had a hockey match to get to across town by 3:45pm, so we had to leave early, which meant we missed out on the section on make-up, but I feel a bit more confident about tackling that so I wasn't too disappointed. The most useful part was the stuff on hair styles. I've already emailed the Lindy Charm School to get some of their nifty products.

One thing the Lindy Ladies impressed upon us was to always tell a lady when you like her "do" or think her frock is fabulous. Those little compliments really do make the difference from feeling just okay to feeling like a million bucks. I got a lot of little compliments over the day at the fair, including plenty from the Cunning Plans Dept afterwards and they really did lift my mood and make me feel gorgeous.

On the whole, a fabulous day out. Watch this space for detailed photos of those jackets when I can get the camera to talk to the computer.

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