YOU’RE SO VAIN: The Oft-Forgotten but Fabulous Accessory – HATS

The Oft-Forgotten but Fabulous Accessory - HATS

Although I always love hats, the beginning of Fall always gets me thinking about them more.  And,  there couldn’t be an easier style to wear than this one.

The average woman before 1970 understood the allure and the impact of hats.  They used to be a central part of any outfit and occupied a center-stage position in the wardrobe of any woman or man.

This one is a simple but very effective style from the late ’60s or ’70s,  it has a chain and ribbon band and is made of wool felt.   Carley Simon wears a similar one on the jacket of her famous debut album in 1972.

A wide brim is flattering to most faces and the key, as always, is to try it on before you buy and to learn what flatters your particular face and body.  A great hat can be the most important thing you wear.

They’re also very effective if you’re wanting to be a bit mysterious or difficult to recognize . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

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A TRUE VINTAGE KNITTED SWEATER CAPE BY BANFF, FROM THE 1960’S OR EARLY ’70’S

A TRUE VINTAGE KNITTED SWEATER CAPE BY BANFF, FROM THE 1960'S OR EARLY '70'S

These types of sweaters/capes/ponchos were popular in the ’60’s and a lot of women knitted them themselves. This one is made by the Banff company, which produced a lot of really nice knits. I have a beaded sweater, knit dresses and suits by them, too.

The greatest feature, to me, is the armholes that allow you to have hands free. Any cape with this design is wonderful because it raises the convenience level big time!

Another nice thing is the button front. Also convenient. The fringe is lovely and the acrylic yarn also great because it washes so nicely and gives warmth but doesn’t have the weight and care issues of most wool items.

Sweet little sweater things, whether cardigans, pull-overs, jackets & coats, dresses and skirts,etc. were really popular in the ’60’s and early ’70’s and are very different from the things made now.

I love finding these beautiful vintage garments that are so unique, stylish and of exceptional quality. This one is an open-weave, so perfect for late Spring, early Fall and cool Summer nights.

True vintage sweater knits are not common finds (are any really common?) but definitely worth the treasure hunt . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

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TRUE VINTAGE 1940S – ’60S CORDUROY JACKET/SMOCK

TRUE VINTAGE 1940S - '60S CORDUROY JACKET/SMOCK

Okay, we’re back to the jackets and coats that will take us out of late winter and into Spring! Since I’ve been doing a lot of red lately, here’s a cute shirt-jacket that I suspect is from the early 1960s but could be older. It had a girls’ school patch on front (which I have, of course, saved) and zips part-way down the front with a metal zipper.

This is cute and very different, easy to pop on over slacks, jeans or even a shift dress or skirt and blouse. I try to picture how it was worn by the original owner.

The corduroy is of a quality rarely seen today. The photo doesn’t do it justice, as the color is actually very bright and there’s no damage and very little wear.  100% cotton and, though it is fairly lightweight, is a dense weave that stands up for years rather than breaking out in thin patches or holes quickly. That’s what I love about the older fabrics. Although some of them have some vulnerabilities and require special know-how to care for them, they all have benefits that make them special in the way the color pops or how they hang or drape on the body. It’s difficult, if not impossible, to find something as good now. Although this is just a simple item, I love it and you can see how it has held up despite its age.

In a couple of weeks, I’ll begin publishing photos of a few true vintage things that I’ve kept at this second home for the warm weather, and my most recent finds! I like to keep the posts seasonal to North America, so stay tuned. You just never what will show up!

Morgana Martin, the magicvintagespy
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TRUE VINTAGE BOLEROS, CAPES, SHRUGS AND SHAWLS FROM McCALL’S

IMG_1480With all the graduation parties going on and the weddings coming up, we’re sure to need little cover-ups like these for the cool nights.  Despite the hot days in some places, it’s still Spring!

Well-dressed ladies in 1956 loved pretty “wraps” to wear over their dressy finery at times when a jacket or coat just wouldn’t do.  What could better than to pick the perfect style, material and color for your own custom-made accessory?

Skilled needle-workers could whip up one of these in no time.  Inspired? . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

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MORGANA MANIFESTS MORE! TRUE VINTAGE FIFTIES FUR JACKET – ELEGANCE FOREVER

 True vintage (at least 40 – 50 years old) furs are some of the most fabulous examples of elegance in tailoring. I’m avid for animal rights and welfare, so I’ll start by saying that the wonderful imitations today make it unnecessary and morally criminal to support the market for fur by buying real fur that is still in production.

That said, lets explore some of the thrilling features of this old piece.  Of black curly lamb, with a black mink collar and full silk lining; a high quality fur coat, jacket, stole or other garment always had a label from a good furrier attached. This one was in New York, N.Y..  The stylist also had her own label inside.  Final touches included the initials of the original owner sewn in the lining and a hook and eye closure in front, plus a decorative button and little shallow pockets at the waist.

Aside from the luxurious material and obvious style, the best and most elegant pieces never were flashy or garish.  As with this one, a look told the story of the value and high price tag without having to shout.

So glad that it’s easy for me to find the best of this kind of classic wardrobe staple by going vintage . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

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TRUE VINTAGE LATE 1940S – EARLY 1950S SWING JACKET

TRUE VINTAGE LATE 1940S - EARLY 1950S SWING JACKET

I just LOVE this one, too!   From the same era as the coat shown yesterday, but could have been a bit earlier.  It looks best on the body, rather than on a mannequin, because the cut shows off when the body moves.

Made of rayon or a rayon blend with a beautiful drape and is fully lined with acetate satin. The buttons are just for show because it is an open-front style. The pockets sit diagonally and also have button decoration. Lots of details!

Although the swing style has been repeated at times, this authentic design is unique and never to be found except when it was new.  There’s absolutely nothing like true vintage! It looks great over dresses, skirts and tops, slacks or jeans – just keep the lines sleek underneath; nothing full or poufy.

You ain’t got a thing if you ain’t got that swing . . . . . doo wop doo wop doo wop doo wop doo wop doo wop doo wop doo waaaaaaaaaa. . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

BOOK:  HOW TO FIND THE BEST IN VINTAGE FASHION – AVAILABLE ON AMAZON.COM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

RARE FIND!! THE SWEETEST LITTLE TRUE VINTAGE BABY JACKET – A MID-CENTURY TREASURE

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SUCH FUN FINDING VINTAGE CHILDREN’S CLOTHING!  THIS COAT WAS HAND-MADE WITH LOVE.

What a gorgeous little sweater-coat!  So well-made.

It’s so unusual to discover baby clothes and toddler’s outfits.  Other than special-occasion garments like christening gowns that are made to wear only once and then folded away as keepsakes, children’s-wear tends to disappear after it’s been through months of dirty diapers, falls and messy meals.

Although this little coat probably wouldn’t have been worn every day, it would have experienced some wear and tear and has been beautifully preserved.  The style and the buttons put it smack-dab in the 1940’s – early 1960’s, when the wool yarn would also have been more common for an infant’s garment than something made since then (too hard to clean when easy-care acrylic yarn is available).  The knitter’s label, however, would have been attached some time in or after the 1960’s – or it could have been made with vintage materials and a vintage pattern at a later time.

Since the blue-for-boys, pink-for-girls thing was pretty rigid until recent years, I feel safe to say that it was made for a little girl.  It’s so intriguing to wonder about the story behind it.  Was it made by a relative or close friend or even purchased at a craft show?  I’ll always wonder – you just never know . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

TRUE VINTAGE FUR ACCESSORIES FROM THE ’30’S, ’40’S, ’50’S & ’60’S

TRUE VINTAGE FUR ACCESSORIES FROM THE '30'S, '40'S, '50'S & '60'S

It’s still not too late to glam it up with fabulous fur accessories, especially during the variable March weather . . . . . . . our mothers and grandmothers had to be prepared to look chic no matter what!

Marlene and Celia have been waiting for another chance to get into the picture.  Here you see them modeling a variety of mink accessories, with the exception of the black muff far left, which I believe is of rabbit fur and has a small zipper compartment and the black hat, which is curly lamb.

Whole skinned animals, with heads, feet and tails (and little glass eyes) were popular as stoles in the 1930’s & 1940’s, maybe the ’20’s, too.  Big “Eeew!” factor for a lot of people now.  I’ve already covered the fur issue so, if you love real furs (and animals) stick to 1960’s and before.

There’s a dark brown mink scarf that closes with a big mink-covered button (very elegant) and a blonde mink “dickie” to wear at the neckline under your coat.

The hats are probably the most visible accessory when you’re first seen – these are super-flattering but also will be warm. So, when you’re forced to take to the sidewalks, just remember —- to be well-dressed at all times is a gift to yourself and everyone who sees you.

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG: MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

NEW FIND FOR THE GUYS – 1950’S LAKELAND WISCONSIN SWEATER & SUEDE JACKET!

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I’m over-the-moon with this one!!  Last year I found a wonderful sweater made like this, with soft, find suede – but this one is a full jacket WITH A ZIP-OUT PILE LINING! – and braided leather buttons.  Just LOVE the quality and style of jackets made between 1940 and 1960.

It was another magic moment for the vintagespy because this coat is in virtually perfect condition.  Just like stepping into a Happy Days episode or going Back to the Future. What fun!  More to come . . . . . . . stay tuned . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

TRUE VINTAGE SHORT BLACK GABARDINE JACKET FROM THE 1940S.

TRUE VINTAGE SHORT BLACK GABARDINE JACKET FROM THE 1940S.

Even though I’d want a heavier coat or jacket over this for winter, I’m often wearing a jacket inside all day this time of year.  For cool days and evenings, I love the trim, square shape of this jacket though the shoulders are not heavily padded.

Nice nipped waist, zip front, cuff detail, front welts and it may have tab detail at the waist and, maybe, the wrists.  It’s simple and tailored with a crisp look.

Not many of these are around now in excellent condition like this one.  Very special – I was thrilled to find it!  Looks equally good with pants or a skirt – that’s the beauty of this short style.  The lack of length means that I could wear it with any style skirt – pencil or full.  So versatile!

Love the ’40s.  This one takes me right into film noir, walking the dark city streets with my private investigator boyfriend, looking out for the murderer . . . . . . . . around that corner?  You just never know . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGSPY.COM