Monday, December 30, 2013

Shopping Dorothea's Closet (Dorothea's Closet Vintage, Online)

Good morning!

Another Monday, Monday...((cue chorus of Mamas and the Papas hit)). How was your weekend? I had a ball seeing friends on Thursday and Saturday and am now looking forward to a segmented week, with a half hour early quittin' time tomorrow and no work at all Wednesday! I have some neat vintage clothes finds to show you all later this week, but  I was very bad with my time off and forgot to take any pictures!

In the absence of a photo from this weekend's activities, here's one my friend Frankie took of our ladies' brunch on the 15th at Mad Donna's (pictured, Lana and Alex). Frankie really has a great eye for pictures!
(ps that's a hat, my head is not growing leaves)
Instead, today I'd like to show you some vintage duds I wish I'd acquired in my lifetime. Friday, having the day off, I spent a lot of time wearing a hostess gown towards its intended purpose-- decorative lounging-- and learning how to use different features on my surface. I watched about a season's worth of Key and Peele (which is getting to be my very favorite show) and used the tablet like a magazine-version of the internet, idly flipping through page after page of vintage online shops for dresspiration. Oooh, child, when I found Dorothea's Closet's online presence! I was there entirely too long, jaw dropped over items that I just had to have. EVERYTHING was something I just had to have! To display just how amazing this shop is, I put together some vintage outfits as I would wear them out on the town. Profitez, mes amis:

purse, hat, dress
There was a lot of interior monologue going on as I scrolled through purses, hats, and dresses. "OH. MY. GOD. STOP. THE. PRESSES." was a common sentiment to all three of the items from those categories in the ensemble I put together above. The hat reminds me of the kind of saucy surrealist stuff the divine Schiaparelli used to come up with for ladies of a certain daring in 1930's France...I love the idea of wearing a piece of art on your head as if it were completely commonplace. I have three or four outrĂ© hats in my collection that never fail to draw attention and comments when I wear them out, but none of them are this far left bank, and more's the pity for me! The dress is a spaghetti strapped piece with a two-tiered ruffle, and a MATCHING BOLERO CAPE I CAN'T STAND IT, it's too wonderful. This is the kind of romantic-yet-soberly-structured kind of silhouette that sends me for my smelling salts (or my charge card...deliver me from temptation, Lord). And the purse! How about those wine-stain purples bleeding into pinks on the velvet bunches of grapes, topped with a green bow? Just so lovely in a way that's unexpected. Want.

jacket, turban, purse
I don't think I've seen a color combination like the one in the jacket in this trio. Once again, the fitted lines of of it  make this piece more appealing to me than that sixties'-sack-coat-skirt-suit that Jackie Kennedy made so popular (and which looks pretty well nigh horrible on me, which gives me an obvious bias against them). I would like to put a black wool pencil belt from a forties' dress I have with this jacket and wear it with a fitted, knee length skirt and black riding boots to the knee (creature of habit, I'm wearing the second two thirds of that costume creation as I type). The velvet turban would match the velvet panels in the jacket, and the felted bag with its flower detail would make a nice item to dump out on my desk when I get to work/the restaurant/home and am fruitlessly searching for the lipstick I left on my dresser. Hey, if you're gonna be a scatterbrain like me, why not be a scatterbrain like me in style. The felted bag reminds me a lot of the neat handicrafts you'll see in those seventies' do-it-yourself-art books, but this one dates back to the forties'! Someone had to teach those seventies' kids how to felt!
dress, purse, hat

Oh, this dress. It's pretty enough with the ruched-bodice and the little sash at the wearer's left hip, but the huge, glittering buttons really put it right over the top. I like to think of a forties' woman going to a particularly chic department store in this kind of outfit-- do you ever do that yourself, dress up to go shopping? I feel like if I don't wear an outfit I really like while I'm trying on possible new clothes, I end up unable to correctly gauge whether or not I should buy the item. Because, heck, it looks better than what I'm wearing when I'm just wearing blah clothes! I have a purse and hat similar to the purse and hat in this grouping, and now I know what I want to wear them with. Where do you stand on floral hats? As you can see in the photo from the top of this post, I'm always trying to wear them and not sure what doesn't make me look like Carmen Miranda. Practice makes perfect, though! (as I randomly add a turban to my ensemble).

Speaking of turbans:

dress, turban, hat
I want. this. outfit. Just as I have demonstrated it. Bottle green iridescent hand painted Mexican dress (say that three times fast)? Turban made of jet black and emerald green feathers? Black Persian lamb mantle (I tried to call it a cape, the listing [correctly] corrected me)? A THOUSAND TIMES YES. I'm very interested right now in a kind of thirties' or forties' fashion editor look-- lots of chic but strange items tied together more by feel than by exact matchingness. I feel like I have so many items in my closet that I'm "waiting" to wear, for the right perfect ensemble to come together, when maybe loosing the strictures on "what goes with what" would allow me to wear prints-with-prints or fifties'-beaded-cardigan-with-twenties'-sack-dress, etc, etc. This would be a dream of an ensemble to wear out of a Friday! Now, if someone could just make dinner reservations and write me a check for about five hundred smackers....(watch me go home and try and DIY this out of my own wardrobe...unsurprisingly, I have the mantle for this! Remember?)

Last but not least, outfits that need no accessories, just a sharp dressed beau in a bow-tie to complete "the look":
left, center, right
The first reminds me so much of something Billie Burke's character would have worn in Dinner at Eight, the second is exactly what I would wear every day of my wonderful life if I were built like Joan from Mad Men, the third is just too unusual and eyecatching to pass up-- I don't know if I've seen an illusion dress exactly like this! Looks so forties' girl singer, with a camellia in the lady's victory-rolled hair and an old fashioned microphone and stand in front of a big band. These clothes look like a story in which I would like to play the lead!

Well, it's noon, I gotta go round up some lunch-- what about you? Which dress would you wear? Have you shopped Dorothea's Closet before (believe me, I might be about to in some of these cases)? What do you find yourself drawn to, wardrobe wise, lately? Know anywhere good to eat in downtown Nashville? Let's talk!

That's all for today, but I'll see you tomorrow with (hopefully!) some new pictures! Can't make any promises in this wackadoodle schedule I've been running, but I can try. Have a great Monday! See you then.

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