Monday, September 19, 2011

Finds on the Fly: September 19, 2011

I've done it again. I've accumulated an impossibly large set of things to blog about, and well, we shall just have to muddle through as best we can. In the immortal words of Bette Davis, "Fasten your seat-belts. We're in for a bumpy ride."

In addition to shopping my poor little self to death for you, I've also been reviewing this falls designer collections for the fall. In my notes for one particularly striking Prada suit, I wrote in my notes that I wanted those stilleto heeled pumps, but I wasn't willing to pay a Prada price for them. Good black pumps can be found everywhere, and the discerning vintage shopper can fing great black pumps, complete with dizzying stilletto heels, for much less than the Prada price (which I didn't even look at, but I can almost imagine without fainting). Well, here are some great, I mean really spectacular vintage stilletto pumps:






A current size 7A, these shoes are from the 1950's, and though there is obvious wear to the insoles and the bottoms, the outsides are all buttoned up and ready to dance! I just adore the fanned leather (or is it satin?) design across the toes, and the shoes sport a healthy height to their stilletto heels too!








Found at Etsy from vendor Schmoo1515 for a mere $ 52.00. A price I'm sure Prada would faint before considering meeting.


Schmo1515 is new to me, but she's got quite the eye for a good blouse or take a look at this pencil skirt!  Now, I could love me some of that! 
With those body hugging curves and the timeless window pane plaid.  She says this is more of a dark grey than a black.  The skirt has pockets, zips up the back, and has a pencil skirt, so you can have that curve hugging appeal and still be able to walk.  It would best fit about a size 12. At Schmoo15's shop in Etsy,  this could be yours for a mere $32.00.



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These "psych out" (faux) thigh high leggings delight me in their practicality; all of the sexiness with none of the constant pulling up. I think they are simply wonderfully chic. While obviously not vintage, they do have that vintage appeal and will do your vintage wardrobe proud -- especially those 60's and 80's mini skirts! Not only are these leggings sewn into a sort of nude pantyhose material, they feature black bamboo/jersey short shorts! If the wind catches that miniskirt, or if you forget yourself and bend over, you may weather these mishaps with dignity intact! Offered at Etsy from Iheartnorwegianwood for $69.00.

This shop offers everything from leggings to jewelry, to recycled clothing, to new clothing in the minimalist, eco-friendly style of what I've come to think of as "Etsy Chic". This includes environmentally friendly fabrics in simple, yet elegant garments such as this black column skirt($59.00):


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I just adore the handmade twenties velvet and lace dress shown above. Featuring a fabulous "vintage bling" belt, don't you know this was the pride of some girls wardrobe?







I'm unsure if the lace has darkened with age or was always this color, but it is a soft ecru bordering on beige color which adds to the vintage charm of the garment.

Offered by Etsy favorite Vera Vague, this gorgeous bit of history coulf be yours for a mere $360.00 -- an absolute bargain for a peice of clothing of this quality.




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This wonderfully feminine peach linen jacket from the early 1990's is one of Karl Lagerfield's creations.  With it's tie closures and fabulous ruffles, I think it has endless possibilities for any woman's wardrobe, my favorite of which is to throw it over a dark-wash pair of jeans.  It would be timeless and chic over any long light colored linen skirt, or... well, the possibilities are as great as the woman's style and imagination.  Found on Etsy at Violent Vintage,  this lovely jacket could be yours for $108.00.

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This incredibly modoliscious scooter / stewardess dress in lipstick dress is being offered on eBay by lovespyvintage.  I love the mod hair style of their model! Perfect for the coming cold weather,  this gorgeous dress is made of a heavy weight wool or wool blend knit.  That lovely belt is none other than Persian lamb! Sized medium to large (and please, please, please compare the garments measurements to something to fits you well), this luscious gown can be your for $94.99 or the best offer.

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We haven't talked about making offers in a long time, so I'm going to repeat my spiel about making offers. Those of you who have heard all this before, skip on down to the next vintage item, but if you're new to vintage shopping, bargaining skills can prove essential to the acquisition of good vintage items at sometimes bargain basement prices. Making an offer is a little like a box of chocolates: you never know what you're going to get. I've had offers for less than half the asking price be accepted, and recently made an offer for $5.00 short of the asking price of an item that's been on eBay for a year rejected! The most important thing to remember is that you never want to insult the merchandise or the vendor! That dress you're offering a buying price for may have belonged to the seller's beloved grandmother! Never try to justify a low offer by suggesting the item is less valuable than the seller thinks. I've found it best to take the approach of being absolutely in love with an item, but unable to pay more than $x.xx right now. Still, never be shy about asking for a garment at your dream price! A seller willing to accept offers is giving you a tremendous opportunity. Start with your dream price, and have a clear idea of just how far you're willing to negotiate before you walk away. The seller will likely sense your resolve and take that into consideration when they are trying to balance their desire to get a good price with the need to move merchandise.

On rare occassions, I've had offers accepted on eBay by sellers who were not listing their willingness to entertain offers. This is rare and really a gamble. That blouse I offered $5.00 short of the asking price was from a sale with a firm Buy It Now price. It's possible I offended the dealer by offering less when she had not indicated a willingness to entertain offers, and in retrospect, I regret making the offer. However, on Etsy, there is no formal protocol for making offers, and that situation is more fluid. I've written dealers just to tell them how much I admired an item, and had them offer me a reduced price. Beyond that, I've never made a "below list price" offer to an Etsy vendor, but I know it is done, and probably often done successfully. Remember, provided you don't alienate the seller, the worst you risk is a polite email explaining, "I really couldn't let this go for that price." If they offer you an alternate price, begin negotiating. If all they do is decline your offer, it's best to make a choice between paying list price and simply walking away. An email wishing them a succesful sale is always a kind gesture if you have reached the end of your willingness to negotiate.

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From the 1920s,  these Art Deco gold lame Mary Jane shoes feature a button closure on each side.  I think I actually squealed when I fell across them.  They are so much the perfect thing to wear with your flapper dresses!  I bet my grandmother had a pair rather like them!  I just love the triangular holes created by the closures.  The shoes are 10 1/2" long and 2 3/4" wide with 3" Louis XV heels.  They are in remarkable vintage condition, with a bit of tarnish in their patina.  Available at 1860-1960 for $125. 

Also from 1860 - 1960 is this incredibly well preserved Titanic Era ladies hat:
Okay, so the flower droops a little.  Cut off the flower and add a new one.  They sell tons of them on Etsy, and I featured a great one just days ago.  This fabulous women's hat is made of a plush velvet fabric, and is lined with polished cotton.  It's upturned brim was made in anticipation of sitting atop a high Gibson Girl hairdo.  Let your imagination run wild with how you could wear your hear with it today!  It's lines are just splendid as this side view will testify.
(You can see how badly the flower droops, but this is so easily fixed!!!)  Hats were large in those days, and this one measures an astonishing 42" in circumference. This treasure is available from 1860-1960 for $150.00.


As luck would have it,  I stumbled upon that hat just moments after discovering this fabulous forest green tulle party dress at Etsy:
Made for a very special evening, this 1950's cocktail dress has a matching scarf/shawl and even includes the flower at the waist.  The tight fitting bodice is sequined and scalloped and includes a lettuce edged floral motif throughout.  Perhaps you could move the flower to the hat and have one fabulous vintage outfit!  The tulle skirt is so full one doesn't even need a crinoline in order to keep that wasp figure!  Offered by Petrune for $350.00.

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This fabulous avant garde black heavily rouched cocktail dress from the late 50's is in such good condition it could almost have just come off the racks. Oozing Hollywood glamour, there is something about this dress that reminds me of Wynona Ryder;  maybe it's just that this neckline would be so appealing with her jawline.  
This fully lined dress feels like silk.  The buyer is not going to do a burn test because the dress is too pristine to mar. (I completely agree).  While there is no label,  it's current size would be approximately a 6/8.  It's being offered by Aiseirigh for $410.00.

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Also from Aiseirigh is this "lovely lush" black cocktail dress from the 50's.
I'm afraid the model is just a tiny bit small for this dress, so don't think it's badly made,  it's just made for more of a Jane Russell type.
The sweetheart neckline is embellished with beads and rhinestones.  The dress features a side metal zipper, a shelf bust, and what should be a tight fitting bodice.  It also has a full circle skirt, so girls break out those crinolines!  The fabric is something of a mystery.  I would have guessed taffeta, but the seller says it makes no rustling sounds.  Nonetheless it is a full bodied fabric, smooth to the touch, and with a matte sheen (faile maybe?).  Yours for $403.00.

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If you enter the word "stratton" into an Etsy search engine right now, you'll get a whole slew of matches in the compact department.  I think this one is the crown jewel of the bunch: 
The beautifully executed, enameled top of this jeweled compact is exquisitely rendered. There is even a bit of powder left in the compact!  I love vintage accessories like this.  There is nothing in modern life that caters to a woman's femininity the way a compact, or perhaps a cigarette case did in the time period from 1920 through 1960.  I look at these and I see genteel dressing tables with silver comb, brush and mirror sets, and women who brush their hair 100 strokes before bed each and every night of their lives.  These items are imminently collectible.   Offered by Simplysuzula for only $14.00.

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These fabulous and timeless Ferragamo mules have actually never been worn!  You can be the first to slip your feet into these black silk slippers with the low heels and the beautifully executed Ferragamo bow.
Ah!  Look at that stitching.  That's Ferragamo.  I'm simply in love with these shoes, and if I could only shink my foot a size and a half, you wouldn't be getting this opportunity.  As it is,  you can get these at Archive Vintage for the bargain price of $175.00.  Run, darlings, run!  



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While I'm in black dress mode,  I just couldn't stop myself from including this fabulous striped sheer ribbon net cocktail dress from the 50's.  Take a look at the close up of this bodice:
Is that a bombshell dress?  Or is that a bombshell dress?  This sheer overlay of illusion netting intermixed with stripes of grosgrain ribbon is rare and gorgeous!  A completely red carpet ready dress.  To keep that lovely fullness,  this dress actually has four layers!  The seller warns it's quite heavy to wear, but completely worth the effort.  Aside from a slight repair to the metal zipper, this dress is in excellent vintage condition and ready for it's next night out. Unfortunately,  the belt is not included with the dress,  but darlings,  the world is full of black belts,  there's only one of this dress!  


Found at Etsy, this dress is offered from SpoonbreadVintedge for the amazing price of only $325.00.

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This amazing tomato red silk wiggle dress is made of raw silk.  It features a scalloped V Neck and wide shoulders to hide those torpedo bra  shoulder straps  To aid wiggling,  their is a 4" slit in the back and a back metal zipper.  There are even pockets at each side to add to the illusion of full hips and a wasp waist line.  Can't you just see Joan Holloway in this dress?  The matching red silk belt is decorated with a bow and backed in leather.  We are so lucky it survives!  So often belts are lost along the way!  With the exception of some very slight underarm discoloration (which I never worry about,  who's going to be lifting your arms to inspect your dress?) this dress is in great vintage condition.  

As the owner of several silk dresses of this age,  I feel I must warn you that you should be sure this dress will fit you before you even try it on!  Old silk is fragile, and can't take tugging!  So please, please, please read the dimensions at the website!  

Offered at Etsy by SeaHoney1 for only $50.00,  this may be the real steal of this blog issue!

And to wear with this lovely dress?  Just so happens I've found some killer, and I do mean killer ruffled up and looking current red shoes!
I think these are so adorable I'm considering having my feet altered to a size 8.5.  These 1980's shoes are 100% suede (except the sole of course) and it's nap is all in good condition, and those little ruffley rosette things are so cute I could just die.

Here's a look-see from the back:
I tell you!  They're perfect!  Well, okay, so in 30 years they've gotten some  minor scuffs, but they are so perfect the scuffs don't matter!  

Found also at Etsy, you can be styling in these for only $30.00 thanks to DearGoldenVintage.



And on that beautiful note,  I'm going to wish you farewell and good shopping!  

I'm having major surgery next week, so I'm not sure when I'll get back to you, but I will be back.  If I'm not too goofy from the hospital and they let me have my modem,  I may just post from my hospital bed!

Take care darlings!

Second Hand Roze



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