OOTD: scissor fright


This is a moody appreciation post for this awesome navy dress I snagged over a year ago at Twice Round Vintage in west Asheville. I’m always obsessed with these goofy over the top doily collars you find  on SO many 80s gems, but the dresses themselves are always WAY too long and I don’t love altering vintage finds. I’ll do it if it’s vital to saving a garment, but taking scissors to old clothing just makes me feel like I’m murdering history a little. Dramatic, I know, but I can’t help it!

So just imagine the delight in my short lil 5’2 soul when I saw this dress on the rack! When I inspected the hem it was clear that a good amount of the dress had been hacked off but outwardly the job was done very neatly, so I was sold. So thank you, whoever you are, that had the balls to do what I could not because I have ended up absolutely loving it. It’s got me thinking more about giving certain dresses a chance through alteration because let’s face it… just because it’s vintage doesn’t always make it cute. Certain silhouettes should have probably stayed buried and it’s a lot less likely for these pieces to be saved, sold, or even worn at all. So, perhaps I will be more open minded to altered vintage fashion (within reason…!!), especially if it could help save more clothing and aid in the great and wonderful recycle, reuse, repurpose life cycle.

Advertisements

Breaking up with Fast Fashion.

 

I have set  A LOT of goals for myself this year. I try to be pretty realistic and only focus on things I know are in my grasp and will challenge, rather than overwhelm me (which can happen OH SO easily if you’re not careful).

However, the biggest challenge I am facing of all this year is my BREAK UP WITH FAST FASHION. What is “fast fashion”, you ask? This refers to quick and cheaply made fashions that reflect the trends found on the runway. These clothes are made with haste and are actually MEANT to fall apart quickly. Why break up with this incredible new phenomenon that allows you to look super-cool for super-cheap, you ask? Well, there are a list of reasons I have behind this decision, falling (albeit, broadly) into the two categories of: ENVIRONMENTAL and FINANCIAL.

Environmentally speaking, we can thank the fashion industry for the world’s second largest pollution-contribution. Not only are we polluting our planet by way of the absolutely excessive use of fuel needed to manufacture and ship cheap materials around the world and back but we are also filling our landfills to the brim with clothing refuse. This waste can be problematic for a number of reasons including the tainting impact these cheaply made textiles can have on the earth and water that literally surround them.

This incredible amount of WASTE is what brings me to the financial side of things. It may seem counterintuitive for someone to spend more on clothing to save money but when you consider how frequently you shop at these places, you’re not really saving any money at all. You just have to shift your mindset and be ok with the ol’ “quality over quantity” mantra because it is SO real, my friends. Like any business the purpose behind “fast fashion” is to make money and I can’t blame anyone for that. But… when you are knowingly producing LOW quality garments so the turnover and return rate of consumers grows larger and larger and more frequent – that’s when I have to open my eyes and take a step back.

So I have decided to resist the urge and break up entirely with buying new FAST FASHIONS and I encourage anyone who stumbles upon this to go ahead and educate themselves as well. As it is I already try to buy a lot of second hand clothing, even from labels that provide “fast fashion” and because I care for my clothing I have made them last a good while. But even with all the tender care I provide I can still see the drastic decline as opposed to my better pieces and that is nothing compared to the weight of the carbon footprint the industry leaves as a whole.

So what can we do? By all means PLEASE keep buying second-hand even if it is from places like Zara, H&M or F21 because we need to do all we can to keep this stuff out of landfills. Do your part for our earth by caring for your garments, repurposing them, donating them, ANYTHING you can do to eliminate waste. Challenge yourself to start thinking of clothing differently – try imagining of all those adorable used dresses out there like a million tiny kittens in need of new homes! Or if you want to buy new, invest in more ethically conscious retailers and designers who will give you QUALITY pieces you can wear for years to come. This is only one more reason in a long, long list of reasons that vintage has captured my heart.

Realistically, it’s becoming more and more difficult to avoid environmental and ethically challenging consumption in today’s world, but with baby steps I have hope that we can begin to make a positive impact. Like Ed Norton says in one of my very favorite movies, “You can’t change the world, but you can make a dent.” – Death to Smoochy (2002). Thanks Shelton.

Here is a great article on the dangers of fast fashion that I have found particularly insightful: http://ecowatch.com/2015/08/17/fast-fashion-second-dirtiest-industry/

DSC_0416.jpg

Britt and I posing in rainy Boston last week (note my puddle-worn suede booties :/)

Such an amazing whirl-wind of trip for us, visiting friends in NYC then exploring Boston together and popping into Providence, RI to have a look-see… which happens to be, by the way, a great little city. I definitely plan to go back, especially with the number of lovely vintage shops we happened upon! I did have the most success however in New York, and I will have three new pieces in the shop soon as a result.

Even though I am now couch-ridden-sick and broke-as-a-joke , it was all worth it and I can’t wait to do it again. And again and again.

OOTD: letterman sweaters

 DSC_0371DSC_0377 (3)
These are a few of my favorite things:
  • Forest green beret knit by a sweet lady at a ministry thrift shop
  • Newly acquired Poetic Licence whiplash shooties with the EXACT same forest green laces. If this isn’t a sign, I don’t know what is.
  • Vintage letterman sweater
  • Little Archer dog, a girl’s best friend and the greatest fetch-partner that ever walked this earth.

DSC_0407

IMG_4326 (1)IMG_4338 (1)IMG_4340 (1)‘Twas a gloomy, rain-filled day in Asheville. But, it was also the absolute perfect time to pull out this amazing, wondrous, fairy-tale of a coat-dress. It is 1960s, made by Seaton Enterprises, Ltd and usually hangs inside my closet door where I can gaze at it longingly. Often through my tears with a sweet – albeit, intense – admiration. It’s the kind of piece that sends those torturous pangs of longing to your very core – WHY are you so perfect?? but also WHY are you so impractical? also WHY was I born in the wrong era and WHY oh WHY am I cursed to never know first-hand the world where THIS was in its’ heyday. It makes you forsake your sanity and clutch it screaming TAKE ME TO YOUR LEADER, SHOW ME THIS BETTER WORLD.
I’m sure other vintage lovers understand this feeling…      right?
Clearly this piece – like many vintage garments tend to be – is truly transcendent and it really does warm my very heart and soul, both literally and figuratively. It weighs a ton though (as you can likely imagine, I mean, have you SEEN all those stones and beads?) and it’s also quite delicate due to age so it isn’t every day that I get to wear it. Admittedly, it also tends to rip out about 1/3 of my hair at every head turn, so there’s also that.
But in all seriousness this is quite literally the coat of my dreams.  It has a very 1960s British-meets-1760s-French royalty feel that is hard to come by, though highly sought after by the likes of me! I stumbled upon it by accident on one of my many online vintage searching black hole adventures that occur from time-to-time, and what a happy accident it was. It was truly love at first sight. Well, love at first click-enlarge-zoom around gawking at the details, then quickly purchase-wait intensely by the window-with eyes fixed on the mailbox… sight. 🙂
Alongside my very favorite black victorian boots and long braid, I felt very much at home amongst the pitter-patter of rain, the grey skies and the extra rain-boosted-greenery that made a welcome appearance this February day.

Thrifting is one of my ABSOLUTE favorite past times. It not only requires patience (lots, and LOTS of patience) but also a very creative and discriminating eye. I think that’s what I love most about it – one blouse or skirt will send my mind to a thousand different places, thinking of the many ways I could style it or the many people I could become wearing it – but on the other hand you have to know when to simply say no to certain garments that you know you’ll never wear (and SHOULDN’T wear). Like, neutral lace blouse is great. Hand crocheted bright orange wrap around vest, not so much. No matter HOW fun it is and no matter HOW many times you pick it back up, the important thing is you put it back down. And leave it. Forever. Just stop thinking about it already!IMG_4242IMG_4260IMG_4262IMG_4274

It’s basically the ultimate dress-up challenge and truly, I can’t get enough.
Yesterday I scored this amazing lace blouse at a local thrift shop and it immediately sent me into some seriously romantic 1970s vibes. It also presents the perfect opportunity to wear these Poetic Licence pumps (that pop of blue just kills me!), so I’m a happy girl.

Not only is thrifting fun and affordable… it’s also an environmentally friendly way to re-stock your closet. There are of course many things I buy new, but I do try to buy as many items second-hand as I can. It’s one more way that we can reduce waste – and look good doing it.