Put A Little More Fire In Your Step

With countless reviews on clothing, shapewear, and beauty, it seems that I overlooked one very fundamental subject….SHOES!!! How could this be? Well, I must admit that until recently my personal collection was rather bleak and nothing to brag about. It must be quite dreadful when your significant other declares you really need to start investing in all new shoes and to dispose of the rest. Yes, I am guilty as charged but it is not solely my own doing as there are several factors that contributed to this hardship. First, finding retro inspired designs locally is next to impossible. Second, the entire populace cannot wear sky high heels; why do shoe designers make all cute footwear with 4 inch+ heels? Lastly, finding quality and comfort all in one is like discovering a diamond in the rough. In a sea of vintage inspired footwear, there are a few gems that stand out above the rest. Miss L Fire has become a household name with their fabulous designs, quality and comfort.

IMG_2396Miss L Fire launched in 2005, by the founder and designer Lynsey Hand. Their origins began in the UK and with their burning success, their fabulous footwear can now be acquired around the globe. With each season, Miss L Fire creates unique designs reminiscent of the Golden Era of glamour but with a modern twist. They also make delightful handbags very remindful of the 1950-60s, an era full of lucite treasures that we now covet. When the opportunity arose to review one of their designs from the Autumn/Winter ’13 collection, I instantly became smitten with the Pompeii in red.

Screen Shot 2014-03-09 at 12.57.09 PMWhen it came to sizing, I was at a total loss since our shoes are in US metric and I usually waiver between a 7 down to 6.5 due to my narrow feet. Miss L Fire run in European metric, from sizes 36-41. Based on the conversion size chart, I fell in between a 37 and 38. Considering the Pompeii are a closed toe style, it was risky to size down as then it would be impossible to wear if they were too small. We all know ordering shoes online is always a bit of a gamble, this is why reviews are incredibly helpful before taking the plunge. When the Pompeii arrived, I was quickly taken by their incredible quality and allure of the 1950s. To my surprise, the 38 was quite generous and could have surely sized down to a 37. Thankfully the t-bar strap allows me to wear them comfortably with an added insole insert. The Pompeii are made with a high quality leather with suede and snake skin accents. The rubber sole bottoms provide excellent grip on slippery surfaces, something that is commonly overlooked in footwear these days.

MissLFireEarlier I mentioned there is a dire need for more options with fashionable low heel footwear since not all of us can wear sky high styles. Unfortunately I was cursed with flat feet (no arch) and cannot wear pretty high heels for any length of time, which is really frustrating. The maximum heel height I can sustain is 3 inches and the Pompeii fit perfectly in line. A huge bonus is the 1 inch diameter wide heel as it provides much greater stability. Miss L Fire did not sacrifice comfort and practicality in the name of beauty, the Pompeii is the complete package. It is rare that I find shoes to be so pleasant from the beginning and do not require much of a breaking in period. Their attention to detail in the construction is something to note; every stitch is in the right place and the fabulous colorful insole is padded for extra comfort.

MissLFire2The Pompeii are ideal to accessorize every vintage wardrobe, they are sure to become a fundamental staple. Their design will lend wonderfully to pair with genuine vintage and vintage reproduction; a great versatility to get the most out of your investment. Miss L Fire has just released their fabulous Spring/Summer 2014 Collection and they are now hitting their online store as we speak. You can also find the entire Miss L Fire collection at their Hollywood Boutique, along with some well known vintage reproduction brands like Trashy Diva, Freddies of Pinewood, Besame Cosmetics and so much more!

Evolving Into a New Decade of Fashion

Recently several vintage reproduction brands have moved into a new decade and started recreating the fabulous fashions from the 1960’s. Although you may instantly think go-go boots and psychedelic flower prints, you couldn’t be more wrong. Women’s fashion from the early 1960’s slowly evolved into shorter hemlines and classic curve hugging silhouettes. When Heartbreaker Fashion released the Marleen in their Haute Collection, I knew it was perfect for the office and without hesitation scooped one up from JBR Clothing.

Available in sizes XS to 2X in Black, Red & Blue ~ MSRP $116USD (Sale @ $69)

IMG_0419Often times I mention when a brand is known to be consistent in sizing as this definitely helps us to find the right fit. In my experience, Heartbreaker is one to stay true to their size charts for the most part. Originally when I purchased the Marleen my measurements were 36-29-42 and I ordered a size Medium. Since the dress is made from a high quality double knit, there is a generous amount a stretch and forms beautifully to your curves. The fabric is so very soft and hugs you in all the right places but thick enough to conceal the trouble areas. Now that I am a bit smaller (36-28-40), I could easily fit in a size Small but much prefer it being a bit loose in order to avoid wearing any shapewear. The Marleen features a round Peter Pan collar in contrasting white knit with a matching belt to cinch the waist. The 1960’s straight pencil skirt bottom falls just above the knee but still modest for those like me who don’t like to show off too much leg. The wide round neckline poses a small issue with slipping off my petite shoulders but not unmanageably so.

IMG_0416For the first time last week, I wore the Marleen to work now that the cooler fall temperatures are here. The double knit fabric is quite warm and would pair well with fun colored tights. The Marleen is so comfortable and doesn’t lose it’s shape after hours of sitting behind the desk. With 1960’s fashion featuring shorter hemlines, it took some time to get comfortable with the skirt falling above the knees. All my other dresses show much less leg and I have become rather accustomed to that as part of my comfort zone. As I mentioned earlier, there was no need to wear shapewear even with the form fitting silhouette. Even a simple pair of tights would nip you in wonderfully and give you a break from the hardcore undergarments. Lately I have been trying to stay away from wiggle dresses simply because I don’t want to be required to wear shapewear 24/7 to feel confident in my clothes.

IMG_0418The simple clean lines of the design pairs beautifully with many accessories, the choices are a plenty. I love to wear the Marleen with my black patent leather round toe pumps and my favorite black & white cameo necklace. If your like me, tie you’re hair back in a high ponytail and you’re ready to go! 1960’s fashion is about simplicity and women on the move. A word of caution, the knit fabric must be hand washed in cold water and lie flat to dry in order to keep its shape. Beware – keep it away from the dryer unless you want it to shrink dramatically.

IMG_0417It’s quite exciting to see the recent trend of 1960’s fashions hitting the scene as I am very keen on the new styles being redesigned for the modern day pin up. The Marleen is fabulous for everyday and a great staple to add to your wardrobe as a grab and go type of outfit.