STELLA’S TRUE VINTAGE 1940’S 2-PIECE WEDDING SUIT

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This is the ensemble that Stella was wearing when I met her and I’m glad she didn’t want to give it up.  I’ll be showing some white satin 1940’s wedding pumps tomorrow.   Although they didn’t come with this outfit, they’d be just perfect with it!

During wartime, this was a relatively modest choice for her wedding and the bride probably had this suit custom-tailored.  Naturally, it has many of the 1940’s styling details which were popular then – shoulder pads, nipped peplum waist, a handkerchief hem and a rare coil metal zipper in the skirt.

Also, some of the favorite classic features of a wedding gown are also present – rows of tiny, covered buttons and medieval-style points on the sleeve hems.  The fabric is a substantial brocade/jacquard floral – not a high-end textile, but nice.  Clearly, this wedding took place in a formal setting.

I wonder about her hair . . . . bridesmaids?  Wouldn’t it be fun to go back as a guest? . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

BEAUTIFUL TRUE VINTAGE SILK FORMAL DRESS OR WEDDING GOWN FOUND IN AUSSIE-LAND

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThis frock is another of my stupendous finds in Australia!   Made somewhere between the 1940’s and 1950’s, it’s a gorgeous dress and I suspect that it really is from the Forties.

Looks like it’s hand-tailored, but by someone who was REALLY good.  The collar is reinforced with hidden wire that is soft to wear, but holds the shape and lets you reshape the neckline as needed –  an unusual tailoring feature that emphasizes the irreplaceable value and uniqueness of true vintage clothing and accessories.

It’s a demure style, despite the neckline plunge, and could be full-length on a petite figure.  I wonder if it was made as a wedding gown?   Although some were very fancy, many of that time did not have a lot of frill and fuss and were actually very tailored styles.

No matter what, I’m sure that this gown has at least one fabulous story to tell!  I wonder . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

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ANOTHER CLASSIC MID-CENTURY HANDBAG FIND!

I already have many tooled leather handbags in my collection, but it’s always open to another unique and high-quality item.  These purses are SO special, because they are hand-made, one-of-a-kind and often tell a story.  This one is beautifully-done, has older traditional motifs and a DOG(!), which always captures my heart.  It was probably a tribute to a beloved pet and is signed by the maker – no relation to me, but what a coincidence!

And, in beautiful condition – I’ll enjoy this one for a long time.

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

BEAUTIFULLY TOOLED LEATHER BAGS FROM MEXICO – CIRCA 1960’S – 1980’S

BEAUTIFULLY TOOLED LEATHER BAGS FROM MEXICO - CIRCA 1960'S - 1980'S

Soft, supple leather inside and out – these bags were made in Mexico and probably picked up by vacationers who used them very little, if at all, after their trip.  Both have vintage hardware, but the designs – especially on the left-hand purse – are more modern.

On the right, we see a traditional floral/cactus pattern similar to those made in the western United States while the left-hand one has a farm worker pictured and, on the back, the Mayan calendar.

What I like best about these handbags, whether made in the ’40’s or the ’80’s is that they are 100% hand-made and usually the workmanship and quality of the leather are excellent.  Plus, they are SO distinctive and unusual . . . . . . . . . . always a priority for me.

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

RARE 1970’S HOME-CREATED MACRAME’ HANDBAG

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What a great find!  Original macrame’ pieces from the Sixties and Seventies haven’t tended to survive well – no surprise.  This one is so intricately and tightly knotted, of heavy household twine.  Simple style with no liner, but required great skill to make and it’s not small.  Can you imagine the time put into this project?!

And, so beautifully preserved.  A wonderful blast from the past.

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

BEAUTIFUL ITALIAN LEATHER HANDBAG WITH A GREAT STORY

BEAUTIFUL ITALIAN LEATHER HANDBAG WITH A GREAT STORY

This beauty was made in Florence, Italy and has a fantastic story. First, I’ll tell my part –

On a Mediterranean cruise, I was listening to the excursions director tell about the ports of call that we’d be stopping in.  Part of her presentation was to highlight the special products available in each place, in case we wanted to go shopping.  She flashed a photo of this handbag made in Florence, Italy on the screen and I just about jumped out of my seat.  I had discovered this one above just like it about 2 months before while vintage-hunting in my neighborhood!  When I told the excursions director my story, she congratulated me and said that these bags sell for 300+ Euros!!

Italy has long been known for its exceptional leather goods – some say it’s #1 in the world. This purse is certainly a good example.  It has a gorgeous red leather lining with special internal pockets which I have never seen before.  Each one closes with a snap clasp like old cigarette cases used to.  The outside clasp is like other true vintage ones I have seen that self-lock when the purse is closed.  After I brought it home, I added a black and red leather billfold which I had found on a previous thrifting expedition.  It coordinates perfectly!

This handbag was styled after one which was made decades ago BY SPECIAL ORDER FOR GRACE KELLY, probably after she had married Prince Ranier of Monaco in 1956 and was living as Princess Grace in Europe.  Can you imagine how my little vintage-loving heart swooned when I learned that?!!!

What a great surprise!  Nothing could have added to the joy and mystique of my first cruise experience like this did. You just never know . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

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TRUE VINTAGE 1950’S PROM DRESS GETS REFURBISHED

Here’s a mid-century  Prom or dance party dress for Spring.  I’ve had this frock for several years and it is in wonderful shape EXCEPT that the bodice had some old perspiration damage under the arms.  No fixing that . . . . . . . .SO, I replaced the overlay fabric on the bodice with a nearly – identical modern material.

To the naked eye in normal room light, the dress looks perfect.  Only the digital camera with flash shows the difference – that aging of the fabric over 60 – 70 years has slightly changed its color.

I’m pleased with my repair, but here’s a good example of why saving any old fabrics left over from sewing or hem changes makes a lot of sense.  You might need them some time and, you just never know . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

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MY FAVORITE (FOR NOW) 1940’S RAYON DAY DRESS

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A super-startling surprise find!  Beautiful 1940’s fabric, perfect condition and just my size.  Fun floral for spring and my favorite dark, dark navy in the background.  These rare and interesting flaps that fall from the waist at both hips are a style feature I’d never seen before finding this beauty.  They were a common sight on many 1940’s dresses.

It’s a simple, easy pullover style that falls just right because of the cut, the fabulous rayon drape and the shoulder pads.  I think I’ll be wearing this one for at least the next 40 years. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

THE QUINTESSENTIAL MID-CENTURY SHIRT-DRESS, IN ALL IT’S COUTURE SPLENDOR

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Handmade back in the day by “Rosalie Couturier” – I’ve never seen this common and popular style done so elegantly, by one seamstress.  All the best of beautiful little details and stunning fit are really only found in purely hand-tailored examples.  What a treat it was to find this one!

The fabric is also very special – a rayon or rayon blend that was used in off-the-rack garments only in the 1940’s – 1950’s, if you were lucky.  And the buttons!  I’m over-the-moon on those – heavy, polished and perfect in their iridescence.  Nothing can compare to old shell buttons.  You can see in this photo another example of the phenomenon I mentioned a day or two ago – the belt looks slightly darker, probably because it was never cleaned along with the dress.  Spy-craft!

Just in time for Spring, right out of classic cinema – Mrs. Miniver or June Cleaver would be right at home wearing this frock any old day . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

LOVELY LONG GREEN SHEATH DRESS FROM THE EARLY 1960’S

LOVELY LONG GREEN SHEATH DRESS FROM THE EARLY 1960'S

For a Spring cocktail party or a dressy date, here’s a lovely gown custom-tailored in the early Sixties.  Blue and green combined was a big trend at that time.

In a mid-weight embroidered fabric, with back zipper and simple lines. Purely sophisticated and elegant, but not a bit stuffy.

Tomorrow I’ll show some embroidered pumps that you might wear with this gown, or with the one that I’ve picked out for the  St. Patrick’s dance!

More pretty Spring fashions to come – stay tuned . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM