Sunday, May 3, 2009

Inspiration (part 1)

I tried on a couple of beautiful vintage sixties dresses featuring lace appliques at the Sydney Vintage Clothing, Jewellery and Textile Show in Canterbury a couple of weeks ago. I took my Mum along and she was amazed by the quality and quantity of what was available. It is a little bit like only having a day or two to shop in Paris or London where I tend to become so overwhelmed by the amount of amazingness on display that I can't make up my mind to buy anything. Then you have weeks of dreaming about all the things you wished you had bought but you of course can't go back - the tragedy!

It really is a fantastic fair and impressively well organised. Word of mouth has obviously been good because it was absolutely packed on the Saturday morning. Mum and I could barely get a peek at some of the stalls and the lines to try on stuff were very long indeed.

Anyway the sixties dresses weren't quite right for me but they did inspire me with their gorgeous lace applique features, and today I stumbled across a fantastic post on Sweet Sassafras blog about a Californian dress designer of the 20's - 60's called Peggy Hunt who, apparently, practically invented the illusion neckline and was a big fan of lace applique. Actresses such as Mary Pickford and Lucille Ball were known to be fans of her clothes and if you click through to her grand-daughter's Flickr page, you can see why.

If you are a fan of sewing, Sweet Sassafras creates her own patterns. I'm trying to become more adept at sewing, but meanwhile my future mother-in-law is a whizz and I've been trawling through old Vogue and Butterick patterns to find some to show her for possible wedding dress inspiration (mine, not hers).

What do you think of this one?
And speaking of wedding dresses and the Vintage Fair, my dear friend Erin picked one up while she was there but alas I wasn't with her and she is keeping it under wraps from everyone until the wedding in November. I can't wait that long!

Among my finds at the Fair was an amazing new mid length skirt made from vintage 60's fabric in a vibrant blue floral design. I'm completely in love with it, even though it almost broke the bank. It is a classic box-pleat design and I should be able to wear it summer and winter. I'm on the hunt now for the perfect white blouse to wear with it, but my efforts yesterday seemed only to produce bad eighties chain store blouses which some second-hand clothes dealers these days are trying to pass off as covetable. The lady that made my skirt - Sharon from Gossamer Textiles - also sells unique vintage and recycled fabrics as well as clothes made from her beautiful finds. She is going to have a website up and running soon, so I'll post it up here when she does as her fabrics are all high quality and definitely worth a look.

P.S. I was in the same shop as The Sartorialist yesterday and no, he didn't take my photo. Must have been the lack of designer labels and/or lack of black. Or maybe because I'm not a model or one of the Sydney fashion pack. I must confess I don't really read his blog that often, so I hardly would warrant a mention. I have noticed in the last couple of weeks that virtually all the young Sydney girls are wearing black body-con dresses for nights out and while they do look hot on their nubile young figures, why oh why do most Sydney girls all have to wear the same thing??? The Sartorialist may well make the same summation.

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