vintage fashion

🌹 R O M A N C E 🌹

February is the month of romance. Whether you have a hot date or lounging around at home with a glass of wine, that perfect piece of lingerie will make you feel bad and bougie. If you prefer a soft sixties silhouette or a dangerous eighties high cut look, a vintage piece can feel so much more satisfying. Peek our beautiful collection released today at the shop!

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Models : Kat Olson + Kayla Allen @cailaallan
Styling: Kat Olson @peaacchh
Photography: Ariel Feindel @arielfeindelmakeup
Makeup: Ariel Feindel
Wardrobe: T+A Vinyl and Fashion

ALBUMS TO OUTFITS – RFF 2015 edition

Regina Folk Fest edition 2015. All items are for sale this weekend at the Regina Folk Fest, Aug. 7-9.

“The Shit Disturber”

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“The Highwayman”

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“Tupelo Honey”

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“Kool Legged Babe”

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“I Get Wild”

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“My Favourite Vegetable”

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Vintage Revival Trends

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The world of menswear seems not to work like a line reaching forward, but rather an ever repeating circle. This spring, the hottest designers are coming back with antiquated fashions in a big way; the good news is that you don’t have to shell out half your monthly wages to fit in with the most cutting edge fashions; in fact, many of these styles can be easily picked up on the cheap from your local vintage dealer, such as T+A Vinyl and Fashion.

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The first trend that is taking menswear by storm is the bold, 1930’s-esque pin collar dress shirt. Arguably revitalized by the great Tom Ford, the pin collar shirt has once again taken its spot as a formal yet edgy wardrobe piece that sets you apart from the crowd. You can pull off this look in one of three ways; either you can shell out some mad cash and get a beautiful white Eton pin collar shirt like I did, you can hunt for the unicorn that is the vintage pin collar shirt, or you can buy a purpose-built collar pin like this one. If you’re the kind of gentleman who wears ties often, then the transition to this accessory will be non-existent; fasten the pin through your shirt collar and you are ready to roll.

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My second trend of this season is the classic monk strap dress shoe. A distinctly British flair, the monk strap shoe (both single and double) has been in and out of popular menswear trends since its inception. Regarded as the most formal shoe option, the monk strap is now making a massive comeback in environments of all formality; from the boardroom to the barstool. Because of the how long the monk strap has been a popular option, a gentleman can frequently find high quality vintage monk strap shoes from vintage dealers and thrift shops alike. Something to look for in a vintage shoe is a construction method called a goodyear welt. Used by shoe manufacturers like Allen Edmonds, Church’s, and Loake, it allows you to have a cobbler entirely resole your shoe, making for an incredibly cheap way ($100ish) to score a like-new pair of classic vintage footwear. If your vintage hunting comes up short, you can also find this style of shoe brand new from several retailers, both here in Regina and around the world. With jeans and a t-shirt, a suit, a blazer, or pretty much anything else, the monk strap is an effortless and classic way to elevate your look this season, and for many more to come.

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My third and final trend of this spring/summer ‘15 season is the waistcoat. Although this is a broad category, the waistcoat (or vest) is making a big comeback in several arenas. Casually, we are seeing the waistcoat make a big comeback; wearing a waistcoat from your three piece suit, one that you picked up from a vintage dealer with jeans takes your outfit up a level, without looking overdressed. John Varvatos and Oliver Spencer, among other cutting-edge modern designers, are aiming directly at the vintage waistcoat look, and both collections feature both double breasted (the style of vest featured in my outfit) and single breasted vests (one row of buttons). Key things to consider when buying a vest are colour versatility (grey is best), good fit, and of course how much you like the piece. A strong inherent advantage of the waistcoat is that it can be heavily tailored, which means that most skilled tailors can make a vest that doesn’t fit you well, hug you like a glove.

Though these trends are currently in vogue, their classic nature assures that they will have at least another hundred years or so in the spotlight. With so many gentlemen currently falling for trends that will soon fall into the category of “definitively out of date”, dressing with an appreciation for classic styles means you will stand out without ever breaking your cool. Happy hunting, and be sure to stay creative with utilizing any or all of these pieces. Jeans, suit, jacket and slack, you just “do you”. Stay classy gentlemen.

Yours,
Scotty Pettigrew

Scott is a professional haberdasher at Colin O’Brian Man’s Shoppe in Regina, SK.

Clowning Around with Onesies

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Remember playing dress-up as a kid? My sister and I would go through this antique chest in our basement filled with my mother’s clothing items that she no longer wore — dresses with shoulder pads, large glasses without their frames, lycra body suits. We’d cover our little bodies with different fabrics, textures, cuts, and colours — wearing whatever configuration suited our mood that afternoon.

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Once we were dressed, it was performance time. I would put a song on the CD-player from one of the few albums that my parents owned — The Proclaimers or the soundtrack to My Best Friend’s Wedding — and my sister and I would put on a dance show in front of my parents and whoever else might have been at our home that day. My sister would run as fast as her three year-old body could around our oval coffee-table, while six year-old me would mouth the words to every song, providing accompanying arm movements and expressive hip shakes for emphasis. As we grew up, my sister and I continued to play dress-up — albeit in a not-always-consensual way. She would take an item from my closet and I’d take an item from hers, both hoping that the other person wouldn’t notice the other wearing it at high-school that day. The (blessing and) curse of wearing the same size as your sister.

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Since moving to Toronto, I’ve found myself dressing more conservatively than I did when I lived in Vancouver and Regina. Nowadays, I tend towards black on black on black, with little colour or pattern deviation. This is starting to change, as I rediscover some of the fascinating items hidden in my own closet. Take this stylish black pant suit-style onesie that ties up in the front. When paired with a floppy black hat and witchy boots, you get an outfit circa Winona Ryder in Beetlejuice (1988). Since summer is quickly approaching, I’ve decided to wear the onesie pant suit with my Trippen platform sandals, wonderfully eccentric and surprisingly walkable shoes from the Trippen outlet in Berlin.

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I found this black and white polka dot onesie at Little Miss Vintage on Commercial Drive in Vancouver. Somehow, I feel both classically glamorous and comfortably clownish in this outfit. Wearing this makes me feel a bit like Marilyn Monroe, especially when I wear it with bright red lips. I love that the top of this onesie is a tube top — a style which I anticipate will experience a resurgence this summer as the 1990s continue to inform the latest fashion, makeup, and design trends.

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This grey onesie is my personal favorite. The fabric — 100% rayon — feels phenomenal on my body. I found it at Community Thrift and Vintage in Vancouver’s gastown, a store with excellent selection that also functions as a Social Enterprise initiative in which all profits go towards PHS Community Services Society in the Downtown Eastside. For those of you in the Vancouver area, donations are accepted at the Community Unisex shop located at 41 West Cordova (http://www.communitythriftandvintage.ca).

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Wearing each of these onesies reminds me of how much fun it can be to play dress up in our everyday lives. I encourage each of you to play around with clothing items that you might not typically wear … it can be a lot of fun, and you’ll be building character in the process.

Thanks for tuning in!  Until next time — Lauren ☾

 

Lauren Fournier is an artist and writer currently based in Toronto.
She is working on her PhD in feminist theory and performance art at York University.
http://www.laurenfournier.net

Photography credits: Lee Henderson (www.noattainment.com)

Cyberpunk and Bird Songs: Nineties-Inspired Jackets for Spring

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Without a doubt, my favorite seasons are autumn and spring. My constitution favors the moderate temperatures of these liminal states. I want nothing more than to go for a long, meandering walk through the city that I live in (currently Toronto, previously Vancouver and Regina) wearing a seasonably light jacket. At long last, I can shed the cocoon of my ankle-length ‘sleeping bag parka’ and salt-smeared winter boots of frigid months past, boldly emerging like a delirious butterfly beholding the first signs of spring. The birds are back, flittering sweet songs at my window. Final papers are being submitted as students make arrangements to occupy their summer months. I wander outside, wearing comfortable walking shoes and a jacket that fits me quite literally like a glove. I find a spot in the park to sit and read some science fiction, cyberpunk, and cyborg theory: Donna Haraway’s “The Cyborg Manifesto,” William Gibson’s “All Tomorrow’s Parties,” and Ursula K. Le Guin’s “The Left Hand of Darkness.”

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The jacket featured here is in my Top 10 Best Value Village finds. I had been a frequent Value Village forager during my time living in Vancouver: my friend Melodie and I would go on regular day trips out to the suburbs (Burnaby, Surrey) and discover wonderful wares in the VVs there. Now, having recently moved to Toronto, I had not yet discovered the local VVs. On our way up to York, my friend Sally stopped by Value Village to find a Halloween costume for her daughter. I decided to join for a quick perusal. This streamlined, shiny black jacket caught my eye as soon as I entered the store. It looked glorious but tiny, and I had assumed it wouldn’t fit. I decided to give it a try anyway.

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Sally told me that I looked like I had walked straight out of The Matrix, which sealed the deal. I would definitely be buying this jacket. The tag signals that the jacket is from Le Chateau in the late 1990s/early 2000s. Made from PVC (polyvinylchorlide), which is a compound similar to rubber, this jacket fits like a glove — like a latex glove used toward kinky ends. I could definitely see this jacket moonlighting as bondage wear. Wearing it makes me feel like I’m a dominatrix-type character in a 1980s-1990s cyberpunk future, circa William Gibson’s Neuromancer.

LINK OF THE DAY: INCLUSIVE STYLE (http://nclsvstrtstyl.tumblr.com/)

Thanks for tuning in!  Until next time — Lauren ☾

 

Lauren Fournier is an artist and writer currently based in Toronto.
She is working on her PhD in feminist theory and performance art at York University.

Photography credits: Lee Henderson (www.noattainment.com)

Weird Girls, Cool Aunties, and Psychadelic Batwing Sleeves

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What does it mean to be “weird” these days? I’ve been re-watching Friends on Netflix, which has been an enjoyable way for me to turn my brain off for a couple of hours between studying for my comprehensive exams and going to sleep. Aside from Ross Geller’s insidious misogyny, the show has stood the test of time. Phoebe Buffay (Lisa Kudrow) has long been my favorite character on the show, her quirky ways and eccentricities having inspired little art freaks like myself over the last two decades. It’s true — Phoebe Buffay is the quintessential “weird girl.” Creative? Check. Musical? Check. Vegetarian? Check. Pagan propensities? Check. A well of strange life experiences to draw from in seemingly random situations? Check. Comfortably cool maternity-style dresses? Check. Crystal necklaces? Check. Chokers? Check. Not afraid to speak out about bisexuality and pubic hair? Check.

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Weird girls. Popular culture is full of them. While some weird girls are beacons of refreshing self-expression, others serve a pointed mystical function in male-driven narratives. I encourage you to google “Manic Pixie Dream Girl (MPDG)” and let yourself get lost in an internet vortex for a couple of hours. So what does it mean to be weird, anyway? If you stand out in public? If you dress differently than your friends? If your worldview lies somewhere outside of the hegemonic mainstream? Are you born weird, or can you develop a solid sense of weirdness over time? I’m being tongue in cheek, but I’m definitely curious about the status of the “weird girl” (or weird boy, or weird genderqueer individual … indeed, gender is a spectrum!) in a time when neon armpit hair is a viral feminist trend on Instagram. Is there a necessary shock appeal to being weird? Is “weird” synonymous with “quirky” and “cute”?

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One of the things I loved most about living on the west coast was how welcomed it was to be weird. The slogan of Portland, Oregon is “Keep Portland Weird,” a phenomenon made infamous by the lovable weirdos Carrie Brownstein and Fred Armisen.

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Flashback to four years ago in Vancouver, BC. I was twenty-two years old, walking through dark alleys with a couple of my close friends, drinking beers out of paper bags, listening to Austra playing from someone’s Iphone, and smoking Djarums (all wonderfully irresponsible behaviors that I do not officially condone!). We were on our way to a party in east Vancouver. My friend turned to me and said, “You look exactly like what an eccentric auntie looks like!” I was swaddled in fabrics of various patterns, colours, and textures, adorned with delicious oddities like my ‘moon face’ earrings and forest green hair. I rocked the “eccentric auntie” look for a few solid years of living on Commercial Drive. Lately I find myself longing for those “eccentric auntie” days of lore. I still cherish my eclectic blouses thrifted from suburban Value Villages out west. These blouses that function as landscape paintings, blouses that depict flying cows and cherubim, blouses that manage to incorporate ‘power clashing’ into their very fabric!

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I have fond memories of going to my first Arcade Fire show back in 2010 wearing my psychedelic bat-swing sleeved dream coat featured here. Me and my black bowl-cut and orange lips, stepping into a stadium filled with hip-looking humans, not feeling very secure in my own skin back then but nonetheless knowing that I loved what I was wearing. A statement piece, one could say. One of a kind. Clothing can definitely function as a conversation starter. This is one of my statement pieces.

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We often hear of the power of scent in invoking strong memories. Our mother’s sugar cookies, our grandmother’s borscht, the patchouli incense you used to burn in your very first apartment. But what about the power that an item of clothing has in taking you back to a very specific time and place in your past? In my own experience, each item of clothing incites vivid memories. My closet is an archive that I can page through at whim.

Thanks for tuning in!  Until next time — Lauren ☾

Lauren Fournier is an artist and writer currently based in Toronto.
She is working on her PhD in feminist theory and performance art at York University.

Photography credits: Lee Henderson (www.noattainment.com)

Diane von Fürstenberg, Wrap Dresses, and the “F*ck Flattering” Movement

I’ve always been a big fan of the wrap dress. With its cinched waist and its deep neckline, the wrap dress is a form that I have known and loved since I was a teenager. Why, you ask? I have been told that it is flattering for my body type.

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I tend to feel supremely comfortable and beautiful in a wrap-style dress. In 1974, Belgian-born American fashion designer Diane von Fürstenberg launched the wrap dress as a fashion style. The wrap dress quickly became Diane von Fürstenberg’s signature dress.

I am lucky enough to own two vintage Diane von Fürstenberg dresses from the 1970s.  I found them both on suburban thrifting adventures when I lived in Vancouver, BC.

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One of the dresses is in Diane von Fürstenberg’s signature 1970s style and pattern (featured on the cover of 1976 Newsweek magazine above), but without the plunging neckline and waist tie.

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As you can see here, the boldly cut collar and matching cuffs place this dress undoubtedly in the era of the 1970s. The pointed collar and cuffs evoke a classy vampire feel. There is something very Morticia Addams about it, which I like.

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The other is a more loose-fitting dress that reminds me of a 1970s country-style muumuu. According to the tag, the dress is quite a few sizes larger than I normally wear: during my early twenties, when I found this dress, I preferred wearing oversized shirts and dresses to form-fitting ones. I often pair this dress with a denim jacket and black leather boots.

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I first discovered the wrap dress in my late teens, when I became conscious of my supposed ‘imperfections’ and sought to subtly hide my tummy. My tummy was my so-called ‘problem area’— the part of me that I didn’t like as much as my arms and legs. On those weeks when I felt particularly off, the wrap dress always managed to help me feel comfortable in social settings. Of course, this was when I was particularly uncomfortable in my own skin, and before I had the community of feminists, queers, and the body positive movement in my life.  Indeed, this was before the “f*ck flattering” hashtag had graced the screen of my Macbook.

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I had never thought to think critically about this notion of wearing “flattering” clothes. I am lucky enough to have a mother who is immensely loving, supportive, and non-judgmental: and yet even she, with all her good intentions, gently guided me into this world of wearing clothes and colours that are “flattering” on me.  For example, baggy pants and boxy shirts hide my “cute figure” (her words, not mine) and should therefore be avoided. Similarly, beiges and pale yellows “wash me out.”  Today I am opting for a middle ground.

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While it can be useful for us to know what types of forms, styles, shapes, colours, patterns, and fabrics make us feel the most comfortable and beautiful, it is also worth keeping in mind the ways in which this discourse of “flattering” prevents certain bodies from being able to wear what they want to wear due to this rather arbitrary and socially sanctioned standard.

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I still wear wrap dresses from time to time, though I’ve also gotten more comfortable with wearing forms that I used to think were “unflattering” on me.  Recently I discovered a red and black patterned wrap dress in my parents’s basement: the dress, reminiscent of the 1980s, was one of my favourite scores from Le Chateau Junior Girl when I was fourteen years old.

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Back then the dress hung off of my thin and boyish frame: I was thrilled to discover that it still fit me after all these years.  Now, at the age of 26, I feel healthy and happy with the way that I look.  Who knew I’d ever come this far?

 

Thanks for tuning in!  Until next time — Lauren ☾

 

Lauren Fournier is an artist and writer currently based in Toronto.
She is working on her PhD in feminist theory and performance art at York University.

Photography credits: Lee Henderson (www.noattainment.com)