CLASSIC MID-CENTURY DRESSY-CASUAL LEATHER JACKET

From about the late 1950’s to the mid-1970’s a classic jacket like this one would go almost anywhere, day or evening, over your slacks, skirt or dress. Not meant for formal wear, but always part of a “well-dressed” woman’s wardrobe. Leather items were considered to be “quality” garments. Well-crafted and elegant in style, outerwear like this replaced the previous “car coat” when longer hemlines were not the daily standard anymore.

We’ve continued to love leather jackets of various styles over the decades since the “bomber jacket”, developed by the military during WW1, became popular as a fashion item after the 1940’s. Although it requires some extra care, properly tanned leather is durable and maintains its good looks. Now, however, we are better-informed about how leather for clothing is produced and have the dilemma of choosing to go vegan in our clothing selections. As you know, I’ve made my choice.

Less vulnerable to the elements than fur, my leather jackets will continue to serve me for the rest of my life if I look after them. I’ll probably never have to make the choice between authentic and faux leather. True vintage leather garments and accessories made before 1980 are investments and still an ethical choice.

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG: MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

LATE 1960’s – EARLY 1970’S KNIT DAY DRESSES

Here are a couple of very practical dresses which are super-authentic but easy to wear for everyday. They also wash well (excepting for the dreaded oil-based spot which can be stubborn on polyester fabrics – but there are effective ways to manage stains). Outfits like this are very sturdy and durable for work, school, shopping or just taking in a matinee’.

When you want to wear true vintage garments but don’t have time to be especially careful of them and don’t want to worry about wrinkles, a few pieces like these are very handy and also demonstrate your vintage savvy. Tomorrow, the perfect “wrap” for this. Stay tuned . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG: MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

TRUE VINTAGE MEN’S MID-CENTURY ROBE, DRESSING GOWN

I just LOVE rare finds of these early mid-century robes with gorgeous medallion prints and satin trim. As Madge illustrates, they look just as good on a girl as a guy though sizing is sometimes a barrier. In this example, I have to concede that it’s true for me and send it along to someone of larger stature.

Anyway, it’s a fabulous example of early mid-century men’s night-wear in Sanforized cotton. The design is classic, of course, but the trim, print and fabric verify it’s age and fashion era. I’d love to wear it with my men’s pajamas of similar age and design, but can’t bear the idea of cutting into it in order to alter the size. Ah, well, such is the plight of the true vintage sleuth, but well worth the peril. We always live to spy another day . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG: MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

DRESSY SWEATER JACKET FROM THE EARLY 1960’S

Heavy sweater “wraps” have been on the scene at least since the 1940’s, according to my closet, but have always seemed sidelined from the fashion spotlight. Lighter-weight beaded cardigans have certainly had their day in the vintage clothing spotlight but their more substantial sisters often go unnoticed. With furs, satin and velvet taking center state for evening and other dressy occasions, elegant garments like this one have gotten less attention – especially during the early mid-century. However, this seems to have become less true in the 1960’s and 1970’s, when heavy knits came into mainstream fashion again.

The jacket above belonged to my mother – a perfect fit for me which I’d like to keep. Alas, bright yellow is NOT my color so it’s another item which will be moved on. Made by the label Banff, the quality is unmistakable and lasting. As those of you who’ve followed me know, I own several Banff pieces and recommend them highly as a worthy true vintage brand. These days, a pair of elegant trousers and blouse with this sweater would be suitable for many events that formerly would call for formal dress. Ahh – love fashion freedom . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLO: MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

SO, SO, SO IMPORTANT. PLEASE VOTE, EARLY OR ON NOVEMBER 8!!!

There are a few more vintage fashion posts coming your way as of tomorrow, so stay tuned. However, I can’t miss this opportunity to urge all of you who are citizens of the United States to exercise your right to vote in this Midterm election. Midterm elections are always important, which many people don’t understand. This one is especially so. Please don’t sit it out. Make a plan, Show up. Help protect our American Democracy for all of us. Let’s defeat those who want to take away free and fair elections and to limit the choices that we can make about our own bodies and futures. Let’s choose free and fair elections and the right of every American to have a say. Let’s defeat them with our votes at the polls. It’s the American way.

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG: MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

A PERFECT “WRAP” FOR YOUR HOLIDAY PARTY NIGHT

I love posting this stole because it is a winner on at least 3 counts: It’s true vintage from the 1970’s. It’s CRUELTY-FREE! and It looks great. Even many of the faux furs available as far back as the 1950’s (and a few in the 1940’s) are beautifully-done fakes. Those available today are as good or better.

So, although I have many gorgeous and some unusually-styled actual fur garments from the early 1960’s and before, FAUX FUR IS THE GOLD STANDARD TODAY. I have nothing against buying and wearing a true vintage fur as long as they last, but please do not support the people who are trapping, raising and killing animals now by buying their products. Be wary of bits of fur trim on modern garments, too. By our responsible actions as consumers, the market for fur from living animals will die out and become only a part of our fashion history.

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG: MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

FROM FORMAL BACK TO COCKTAIL – A LATE 1960’S NON-TRADITIONAL FIND

I LOVE this dress! It’s so different, but with all the hallmarks of a perfect true vintage cocktail frock. 1. It’s black 2. It’s sophisticated, elegant and well-designed 3. It is not too revealing (didn’t I mention elegant?) The BEST thing about this particular dress is the asymmetrical 3/4 sleeves, trimmed in marabou (another inhumane vintage-era material, like fur, that is definitely off the table today). So Sixties.

A great length, Easy to wear. comfortable and flattering body-skimming cut. Sleeves add a bit of warmth if you don’t want to be forced to wear some kind of shawl, etc. in a cool room. Flattering scoop neckline sets a perfect stage for your pearls (or diamond pendant, or emerald, or ruby, or sapphire . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Definitely bling-worthy.

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG: MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

BEAUTIFUL 1970’S ALYCE FORMAL GOWN

Gowns by Alyce are always so beautiful.. Many for sale are newer than this one, but I love the fabrics and tailoring detail on the older versions. The bodice has boning and lovely beading. The skirt is swishy with two layers. It would be a keeper but, alas, is too large for me (and for Stella, too) so it’s time to pass it on.

Black is always classic and stunning, but I’ve seen Alyce gowns in many colors. When you’re looking for a special formal dress, I recommend this brand and especially if you can find one that is true vintage. The older the better!

AND, TO ALL YOU SPOOKY SLEUTHS, HAPPY HALLOWEEN! . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG: MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

1930’s VELVET REPRODUCTION GOWN

HAPPY HALLOWEEN! This dress is stunning for nightclubbing. Spectacular in dark green velvet; I loved finding this one. Such an unusual style. It’s the only gown I have with long sleeves and bare shoulders – not often seen, but was a Thirties style at one time. Very dramatic with the high neckline. The only drawback of gorgeous velvet clothing, if you have crowded closets, is that they need room to hang or will become wrinkled (like many other fabrics). So, since I don’t trust my own steamer with some special materials and don’t want the considerable expense of frequent trips to the drycleaners, these archive photos are less than ideal.

However, that’s what understanding the true magnificence of these garments and having a good imagination is all about. Hanging overnight above a tub of hot water also works – (the dress, not you). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG: MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM