True Vintage 1930’s – ’40’s Summer Day-Dress by Lora Lenox

True Vintage 1940's Summer Day-Dress by Lora Lenox

Such a beautiful coral color on this fun and spunky frock from the late 1930’s or early 1940’s.  I love the great big buttons and the pleated flounce at the hem.  Polka dots all over.  The fabric is an interesting textured weave with some pattern in it, like some men’s shirts of the ’40’s and ’50’s that are so intriguing.

Made by Lora Lenox, a company that manufactured women’s clothing over several decades. This one was definitely a moderately – priced item, but not of poor quality.  Just to have survived since the ’40’s in such good condition says a lot.

It’s got the hallmark shoulder pads and a variation of that classic shirtwaist style.  When I caught sight of it, half-hidden, it was the color that arrested my eye.  Coral is so flattering to most women and so perfect for Summer!

Keep your peepers peeled, ’cause you just never know . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, the Magicvintagespy
Blog: Magicvintagespy.com
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TRUE VINTAGE 1950s WIGGLE DRESS BY A WELL-KNOWN MID-CENTURY DESIGNER OF CALIFORNIA

TRUE VINTAGE 1950s WIGGLE DRESS BY EVE LE COQ OF CALIFORNIA FOR ST. PATRICK'S DAY

Here’s a line-up of wool dresses from the 1960s and 1950s, lightweight and classic enough to wear in some parts of the world in three seasons of the year.  Although I’m highlighting the second from the left, I’ll describe them all to start.

On the far left, a mid-weight jumper from the mid – late 1960s in a brown tweed.  Can’t recall the maker, but made in the U.S.  The bodice is lined and it is intended to be worn as a sleeveless dress or with a blouse underneath – your choice.  In the cold weather I’d probably want the blouse, but some people like their arms bare even in winter and that was a popular style then.  A cardigan sweater over would work, too.  Although it didn’t come with its own little jacket, sometimes sleeveless dresses did.  Great style for school or office.

Third in line is a straight, belted shift in heather blue by Pendleton.  They’ve been making quality wool clothing for decades and it is always classic.  This one from the late ’60s can also be worn alone or will a blouse or turtleneck.  Also perfect for school or work.  Some women would put this on as a day dress for shopping, meetings, etc.

On the far right is a wiggle sheath from the late ’50s.  Also a U.S. maker.  It is lined around the upper bodice and neck and is designed to be worn sleeveless.  It’s a simple, un-decorated design but would look best in the evening or at an after-work party or dinner.  It could have gone to work if dressed down a bit with a sweater or jacket.

Now for our star of the day – Are you looking for ideas about what to wear on St. Paddy’s Day?  Look no further.  This is a smart, figure-enhancing dress that is demure enough for any setting and also sophisticated enough for any.  It all depends on your accessories. In a lovely kelly/emerald green, it’s also a nice transition color into Spring.  Eve Le Coq of California produced lovely dresses – very chic.

It’s not been unusual for me to encounter these kinds of wool frocks at various places in my searches.  If you find yourself in a store, they are often marked down at this time of year.  Don’t let wool fabric discourage you – as long as you’ve got a breathable (well-ventilated) storage bag for moth season and a clothing brush, it’s easy to care for and can be dry-cleaned at home if there are no serious stains.  Very versatile, very vintage and worth the investment.

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

TRUE VINTAGE 1950S LINGERIE SLIP OR DRESS

TRUE VINTAGE 1950S LINGERIE SLIP/DRESS VALENTINE'S DAY STUNNER

This amazing slip (or dress?) is something I have seen only once.  It is of all-over lace, with a red nylon lining, side zip and a side slit.  It has construction features of a slinky dress but in all other ways is made like other lingerie slips of that era.

Imagine wearing this under your party frock or, if you are more daring, alone. Perhaps you won’t want to wear it until after the party . . . .

In any case, it’s a true vintage knock-out item with that great Cat-on-a-Hot-Tin-Roof feeling. Would be a nice little anniversary or Valentine’s Day surprise. When I found it I certainly couldn’t resist.

It was a bit too small for me and I no longer have it (sob).  My only regret now is that I can’t photograph it on Stella, who it would fit to a “T”.  Eat YOUR heart out, Elizabeth Taylor . ..

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

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TRUE VINTAGE 1950’S WIGGLE DRESS FOR VALENTINE’S DAY

TRUE VINTAGE 1950S WIGGLE DRESS FOR VALENTINE'S DAY

Oooh!  Wish I had a party to go to – you can be sure I’d wear this.  By Jonathan Logan in cherry-color velveteen.  Deep V-neck front and back, back zip.  The straight sleeves have short zippers at the wrists – a surprise feature that I’ve rarely seen excepting on wedding dresses.

Looks good on Madge, huh?  You can be sure that there are no pockets! Nothing shows off the figure like a “50s wiggle dress or 1930s bias-cut gown.  Women wearing these look nothing but elegant because they are cut and made so well.  Let’s bring back the days of high-quality, elegant AND alluring clothing again (but till then, I’m thrilled to be the Magicvintagespy. ) And, you just never know . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

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MADE FOR A BOND GIRL? . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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The most interesting dress – by Lawrence Kazar  New York and it looks like a “daring” mid-’60’s design to me, but may be 1980’s as I can’t find any earlier history on this designer.  The fit is slinky and small but the armholes are cut very low and it’s styled to wear without a bra.  That’s a trick to do effectively but this design succeeds.  If your dimensions are right, it’s a knockout!!

Besides the bra-less top, the most distinctive feature is the peek-a-boo waistline which was sometimes seen around 1965 or so.  It’s very nicely tailored and such a gorgeous color.  So, Mod or Dynasty, I really couldn’t care less.  Oh, James . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

FABULOUS FIND! EARLY 1950’S 2-PC SWEATER DRESS – VA-VA-VOOM!!

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What a wiggle dress this is!  Marilyn Monroe – move over!!  What a rare find – couldn’t believe it when it appeared (no, I fib. Of course I could).  It’s hand-knitted, as was the one given to me several years ago by my friend Rosalie, who had made it herself in 1952.  Likely, many women who were competent needle-workers did so when this style was popular.

This example is made.of glossy yarn just perfect for a sophisticated occasion. I’m keeping it for wearing at just the right vintage venues (local museum events come to mind) or theme cocktail parties, Halloween  . . . . . . . . ..

Anyway, I’ll be having LOTS of fun with it and other great pieces that were discovered this winter.  That’s what it’s all about!!!  Too much enthusiasm?  Never . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

TRUE VINTAGE AMERICAN WOOL JUMPER DRESS FROM THE LATE ’50’S OR EARLY ’60’S

TRUE VINTAGE AMERICAN WOOL JUMPER DRESS FROM THE LATE '50'S OR EARLY '60'S

Here’s a very special woven wool jumper dress with big shell buttons. Although I have it pinned since it’s a little too teeny for Madge, you see how much difference a little change in one’s figure could make in the fit!

It’s really cut for a petite woman, maybe slightly under average height. But, a couple more inches here and there and VAVOOM!  Unfortunately, a shade too much on the petite side for me and no Vavoom, so I sold it before Stella joined me and it would have fitted her well!

Dresses like this were super popular right around 1960 and might have been worn with a turtleneck, but a blouse would have been more likely. I show it with this sweater just because the color matches so well.

The most outstanding feature of this design is the big abalone shell buttons asymmetrically closing the front. And, the hem-line is fairly long, especially on a shorter person. A sign of the times.

Definitely a sophisticated back-to-school or a career dress for some aspiring young woman!

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

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TRUE VINTAGE 1950’S COCKTAIL SHEATH DRESS

TRUE VINTAGE 1950'S COCKTAIL SHEATH DRESS

While we’re in a New Year mood, here’s a really special dress from, I believe, the 1950’s. It’s more or less a cocktail style, but could go to dinner and dancing, too.

Originally, it had nude netting on the front bodice and upper back, with skinny binding around the armhole area and the neckline.  The purpose is to give a bare look, without the bare.

Very elegant but, unfortunately, the material had some small holes which could not be repaired. I could not locate material of the same type for a replacement, so I reluctantly removed it and restyled things a bit to make skinny straps instead. It works! Being versatile is an indispensable skill.

I love this dramatic pointy accent on the front! The fabric is also very elegant – probably a rayon that looks for all the world like silk shantung. And the hourglass shape!

Worthy of Peggy Lee any day . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM

 

STELLA (FINALLY!) MODELS THIS 1950’S HAND-TAILORED WIGGLE DRESS

Now that Stella’s on the modeling circuit, this dress can be displayed as it should be.  Several years ago I found this beauty – wish the photos did it justice.   Gorgeous atomic/abstract/art swirl fabric in glossy and soft rayon.  All hand-tailored.  FAB!

MORGANA MARTIN, THE MAGICVINTAGESPY

BLOG:  MAGICVINTAGESPY.COM