From a Little Spark May Burst a Flame

As our personal tastes and style continue to evolve everyday, I find myself much more aware of not over spending on clothing that will simply sit in my closet going unworn. Up until recently, I was focusing mainly on authentic vintage but this autumn has brought forth some pretty spectacular designs that I simply could not resist. The online boutique that I have always admired for their phenomenal ability to make everything look fabulous with their line up of iconic pinup models is Top Vintage Boutique. They carry such a wide array of brands, suitable for almost all budgets. In particular I found myself fancying their house line Vintage Chic, as it recaptured my love of a curve hugging wiggle dress. After a very short debate, I decided to take the plunge ordering the 50s Brianna Tie Neck Pencil Dress in Cognac.

Available in sizes 8-18UK in Cognac & Blue (new)~ MSRP €59.95

Seeing as I was very unfamiliar with the Vintage Chic brand and sizing, I relied heavily on the Top Vintage size chart and customer reviews to confirm what size would be most suitable. Top Vintage provides great fit advice on each items individual size chart; for the Brianna Dress, they advised it ran small and to order up if you are in between sizes which I was. My measurements (bust 36″, waist 27″, hips 41″) put me at the higher end of the size 10 and right in the middle of the 12. Since I intend to wear this mostly to the workplace, I wanted mine to hug my curves comfortably and not be overly fitted so I went with the size 12 (Medium). Needless to say, I was even more in love with the Brianna Dress when it arrived as the photos do not do the gorgeous cognac colour justice. I was super thrilled that the fit was spot on, it hugged my curves all in the right places but still had ample room to feel at ease. The Brianna Dress features a chic tie collar with 3/4 sleeves, stylish front pockets, a sexy wiggle pencil skirt and side zipper closure. At 5′-4″ tall, the hemline falls just below the knees.

It has been a long time since I found myself enamored with a sexy secretary look a la Joan Holloway and the Brianna Dress did not disappoint. When I placed my order from the Top Vintage website at the end of summer, there were very few photos showing how the Brianna Dress would look on a curvy body type like mine. Ava Elderwood’s magnificence and the glowing customer reviews both convinced me to take the plunge. The rich cognac colour is so warm and quite a rare shade to come across these days. What drew me in is the simplicity of the design silhouette with the unique subtle details like the side tie collar and front pockets that create a point of interest. I will be honest, I fussed with tying the collar as it was a bit tricky to get it to lie nicely but once I did…it looked perfect. The polyester fabric has some stretch and is quite thick which is ideal to help conceal any trouble areas. To create the illusion of a flawless hourglass silhouette, I paired this sexy wiggle with my trusted Spanx High Waisted shorts (link here). The Brianna Dress is perfect for the office and can easily transition to nighttime glam.

A classic wiggle dress is simply elegant on its own and needs little accessories to create a stellar ensemble. I chose a classic office look by pairing the Brianna Dress with vintage copper earrings, a thin black belt, a vintage 40s cable knit handbag and black round toe pumps. If you want to add some sparkle, a fabulous large brooch placed at the tie collar or a dainty one placed on the chest would both look spectacular. The possibilities are abundant.

It has been a long while since I ventured away from my go to swing styles and embraced my inner Joan but the Brianna Dress has sparked the old flame inside of me again. We need to celebrate our bodies and not hide behind our insecurities; something I have been doing for quite some time now. So what if we gain a little weight or don’t meet the ideal image of ourselves…live life for today!

 

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Goodbye Summer, Hello Autumn

When things don’t go as planned, it can really dampen your spirits instantly. This is exactly what happened for our long awaited autumn blog photoshoot. I had meticulously chosen my favorite autumn  themed ensembles to showcase in the most magical picturesque setting surrounded by the rich autumn colours only to arrive on site to find all the trees were still green! Honestly, mother nature is quite out of sorts these days…I have never seen so many green trees still full of leaves in late October. Despite my disappointment, the hubby drove around our little town and found a lovely little park for us to take photos for the afternoon. I quickly forgot our rocky start, embracing my love of autumn to not disappoint my readers.

More and more, I find myself pairing vintage reproduction with authentic vintage to create practical everyday looks. They are two worlds that can easily compliment one another; just imagine the possibilities. Where does one start? Find versatile vintage reproduction that can be mixed and matched with just about anything. One of my go to staples for autumn and winter are the Emmy Design Ice Skater Cardigans, they are the bees knees! If you haven’t heard of them before, you will wish you had long ago.

First things first, yes they are probably the most expensive cardigan on the market but they are worth every penny! I refer to them as investment pieces, seeing as they will become staples in your wardrobe for years to come. Second, they sell out FAST every season…be ready to buy them right away, even consider pre-ordering them from Emmy Design authorized retailers. Lastly, select the colour that will coordinate the most with your current wardrobe since you will likely only buy one to start.

This year, I knew that I had to own the gorgeous Ice Skater Cardigan in Cinnamon and therefore stalked the Emmy Design website waiting for them to be released. I learned from previous years, do not procrastinate as they will sell out in most sizes almost immediately. This would be my second Ice Skater Cardigan, previously purchasing the fabulous Mustard from one of their online resellers in 2016. I will get to why I love them so much but here is a list of potential shops that may have still some in stock:

Now let’s talk about what makes the Ice Skater Cardigan is so fabulous! We can all see that they are a beautiful cable knit design, reminiscent of the vintage sweaters from the 1940s. But what you cannot see is that they are made from 100% quality wool that is NOT itchy WHATSOVER and will not lose it’s shape over time. The impeccable craftsmanship is nothing like the knits currently available on the market, these will last for years possibly decades if well cared for. Since they are made from non synthetic yarn, they are breathable while keeping you toasty warm. I wear their smallest size 34/36 comfortably, it’s a little loose but perfect for layering.

The Ice Skater Cardigans are the quintessential staple that pairs beautifully with repro and authentic vintage.  They can be worn with trousers, skirts, denim, or layered over dresses…the possibilities are endless. With the cooler autumn days upon us, I am pairing them with my favorite vintage novelty print skirts like this darling Robin Circle Skirt. The warm shade of cinnamon compliments so many colours and has already proven to be very versatile. They can be worn buttoned up or left open layered to complete your ensemble.

This Vintage Robin Circle Skirt is rather rare, likely sewn by a homemaker from the 1950’s using a Make-Your-Own-Novelty-Print-Skirt Kit that were available through popular catalogue stores. It is made up of two different prints of alternating 12 panels to create a full circle skirt. It looks pretty spectacular with the Ice Skater Cardigan in Cinnamon.

I have heard many ladies question if the Emmy Design Ice Skater Cardigan is worth the high price tag but one thing that is certain, not one has ever said they regretted their purchase afterwards. How many cardigans at $20-30 have you purchased each year only to see them pill and fall apart after a few wears/washes? Quality knits are hard to come by these days and I have learned that it is best to invest in quality wardrobe pieces over fast fashion every time.

Outfit Details

Emmy Designs Ice Skater Cardigan in Cinnamon

Vintage Robin Circle Skirt from Victory Girl Vintage

Vintage Bakelite Jewelry

Mandy Retro Mary Jane Shoes from Royal Vintage Shoes

 

 

 

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