MID-CENTURY SWING DRESS FIND

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Fun find – a custom-tailored frock made sometime between 1960 and 1985.  It’s got overall a great day dress style, harking back to the 1940’s.  The best thing about the styling, I think, is the flared skirt design which will flip and twirl with every movement.  A perfect dress for dancing!

Another neat thing is that the seamstress put in a LONG side zipper so that it’s really easy to put on and take off – no need for contortion or someone to help you zip, as sometimes happens with back zippers.

This is a relatively simple dress, but little clues tell me that the maker put special thought into the styling and construction, which make it special.  Love it!

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

PRETTY ’80’S DOES ’40’S FROCK – LOVE THIS VERSION!

What a fun and versatile dress!  I’ll enjoy wearing this one lots of places.  It’s another pretty faithful re-creation that made it worth picking up.  Lovely floral print rayon, a flouncy neckline ruffle, side zip, midi hem and, of course, shoulder pads.

Most retro fashions are not worth much more than for the rubbish heap, but a few makers paid some attention to quality and authentic design.  Well done!

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

 

ANOTHER UNUSUAL VINTAGE LOUNGE-WEAR KIMONO – TRADITIONAL EAST ASIAN

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What a beautiful handmade garment!  I can’t date it and have never discovered one like it before.  Because of the traditional style and motifs, it may be hard to say exactly how old it is.  Could be several decades old, or very modern.  I was attracted by the beautiful colors and the hand-tailoring.

The belt I have used is not original, but necessary for this robe.  As I understand it, obi belts are often made separately from the robe, to special order.

Although it seems very large and long, after you wrap it it fits little size 2 Stella.  What a puzzle – not sure who it would have been made for.  The motif of cranes suggest a man (?) but I’m certainly no expert on these!  But wait – more mysteries to come . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

SWISHY, SASSY AND SOPHISTICATED EIGHTIES DOES FORTIES DAY DRESS

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When I don’t find the real 1940’s thing, this will do.  When a dress is as nicely done as this one, I collect it and wear it with no worries.

In a pretty true-to-Forties style, of 100% rayon with an abstract leaf print, this frock wraps in front and ties to one side.  Well-fitting with some smocked elastic in the waistband behind and well-placed buttons and snaps inside to prevent gaps.  This is a design that rivals the best vintage styles with attention to tailoring detail and makes any garment a pleasure to wear.

Modest-sized shoulder pads and a midi-hemline add to the figure-enhancing final result.  Easy, worry-free wear and flattering style never came any better.  Although it’s only baby vintage, just about 35 years old, I’m pleased and will wear it a lot!

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

SECOND FIND – AN EIGHTIES DOES FORTIES SEMI-FORMAL DRESS

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Interesting!  I’ve come up, in the past 3 or 4 years, with three dresses in this basic style – crossover bodice, wasp waist, poufy sleeves and shoulder augmentation – all in formal styles.

The first find was true 1940’s, the second was ’40’s to early ’50’s and this last is 1980’s doing the Forties thing.  This frock’s styling is a real dog’s breakfast.  It  gives a nod to the bubble skirts of the Eighties in spite of the mid-calf length and in a ’50’s-style bright pastel – which to me is kind of an awkward trendy marketing ploy that fails in the final analysis.

No matter.  It’s fun to see what happened with the same style over the years and this one will go to the university theater due to some un-fixable damage.  It’s a hoot to explore the back alleys of fashion history . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

YEE-HAW! GIT ALONG LITTLE DOGIES! AN ICONIC WESTERN-WEAR LABEL SINCE THE EARLY 1900s

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Yes, it’s a standard cotton cowboy shirt with snap closures.  An embroidered patch on the back indicates that it was worn by a rodeo showman.  It’s not that old – 1970’s – 1990’s probably, but the real treasure is the brand label.  Again, look it up on Wikipedia – very interesting history.

Of course, I look mostly for garments and accessories that I’ll add to my own wardrobe but this field of espionage is so fascinating that I sometimes take a little detour.  I wonder what may show up next?  You just never know   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

BEAUTIFULLY-MADE VINTAGE BARBIZON COTTON NIGHTGOWN

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I’d been looking for a lightweight cotton nightie and, luckily, discovered this wonderfully-constructed example by Barbizon, the women’s lingerie manufacturer that opened in 1933.  This gown isn’t too old, made in the 1970’s – 1990’s time frame, but the brand label and quality made it worth picking up.

Though the name remains in the marketplace, the company is no longer in operation, as far as I can tell.  Many lingerie and sleepwear pieces can still be found in vintage clothing stores, on eBay and Etsy.   Barbizon garments were always well-made and pretty.  Though not from the eras that I enjoy most, this gown is classic in design and construction, so I couldn’t be happier.  Just what I was hoping for!

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM