Wearing a vintage blouse with modern clothes

How to Modernize A 1940’s Blouse

Do you ever see vintage stores full of beautiful garments but wonder how you can make them fit into your pretty modern wardrobe? It’s a challenge to your creativity, but if you see something you love, why pass it up or let it hang in your closet? Mixing vintage pieces into a relatively modernized closet, isn’t as difficult as it feels. You just have to find versatile pieces, embrace separates, and leverage with accessories.Take a look at this

A 1940’s rayon blouse

I found this at a garage sale and instantly fell in love with the print. Blouses and shirts are a good way to get started incorporating vintage into your style, because they are easy to pair with jeans, skirts, or things you probably already own (like these camel colored skinny pants). I’m also thinking of trying this blouse with a high waisted mustard, knit skirt, next.  This blouse also might work under a slip dress, which would really emphasize the amazing pattern on the collar.

Layer Layer Layer

It’s a lot easier to do this in the fall and winter than the hot summer, depending on where you live. I was able to use another vintage piece from my closet, to add to this outfit. This 1960’s cardigan is super versatile but also extremely detailed, which brings life to any basic look. The brown embroidered edge worked well with the browns in my pants and shoes.

Vintage cardigans are a great first addition to a vintage wardrobe, but beware of moth holes, as critters love to snack on these old natural fibers. Also be sure to clean thoroughly before inviting a vintage wool piece into your closet space. Unfortunately, many vintage stores and sellers don’t properly clean their products before selling (Heirloomen does!).

Layering can also be done with coats, sweaters, shawls, and scarves.

 

1940's rayon print blouse

Accessorize right!

Vintage shoes can be difficult to wear and style. In my opinion, wearing vintage heels with a vintage dress makes me feel like I’m in costume, and sometimes I get weird looks at the office (hi haters!). These brown loafers are from the late 1970’s and have Gucci vibes written all over them. Vintage jewelry is another great starting point for working in your new style. Try a long 70’s pendant necklace, or a 40’s metal animal brooch.

A mix of vintage pieces from various time periods, or a mix of vintage and modern, can be a good first step to feeling comfortable wearing vintage. Also, this prevents you from throwing away your whole wardrobe and starting from scratch.

Do you want to see more looks with mixed and matched vintage pieces? Check out my styling post for a winter day look. Want to see another way I styled these shoes? See my Tangerine Dreaming post.

-Courtney

5 Ways To Start Your Day with Creative Energy

5 ways to start a creative day

Are you a creative, looking to make the most out of your day? It can be difficult to get the energy for a focused, structured working day. Whether you are a business owner, creator, marketer, or artist, you need to take some time to prepare yourself for a day full of making what you make. Aimlessly going about your day with no direction is a an easy way to burn finite energy on tasks that don’t push you over the goal line. How can you set yourself up for a day full or creative energy?

1. Wake up with a little extra time.

Wake up 10 minutes before you normally would. Think about how you slept, what dreams you had, and how you feel about the day. This is a small moment where you can have some reflection time. Once the day starts, life sure makes it hard to carve out small moments and by then, your brain will be buzzing with to-do lists and life stress. Pause while you are free from worry.

2. Write down your goals, tasks, and intentions for the day

Keep a journal by your bed or somewhere peaceful that you can take a few moments to sit down and write. Make an aim for the day and a long-term goal that will take more than just a day. Most importantly, jot down some to-do tasks that will help you achieve your daily goal, as well as move you toward your long-term goal. Also, reflect on something you are grateful for, and write it down. These will be nice to look back on in the future.

3. Focus on your surroundings

Inspiration is hiding in our immediate surroundings. Why do you think so many artists and poets throughout history focused their craft around natural forms, landscapes, and the living earth? Look at the colors of the grass, the light reflecting through the trees, or  city birds navigating their way through the alleys. You are part of a big, complex world, and focusing on a simple piece of it will do wonders for your mind.

Your surroundings also include your home. Unwanted clutter, piles of unclassified junk, and small messes can really affect your mood, subconsciously.  Keep your spaces tidy, and organized. Get rid of things that don’t have a place, aren’t needed, or don’t bring you joy. There is no need to spend an entire day in a room that makes you feel overwhelmed. Set your surroundings straight to avoid mornings of immediate stress on arrival. Your home or studio should be your refuge.

4. Don’t touch your phone

Avoid your phone and social media for the first 20 minutes of your morning (at least!). Checking in and mindlessly scrolling will set your day in a fog. Do you ever give yourself a headache from overloading your eyes with up-and-down fidget motions to keep up with a scrolling feed? This will set your day of for failure physically, and emotionally. Enjoy life without technology for a bit. The constant need for stimuli is a habit that can be overcome with practice. We’ve been getting along without social media for quite a while.. don’t forget that.

5. Learn something or listen to something inspiring

Queue up a podcasts, motivational talk, or mood-setting music. Get yourself ready to take on the day with a little encouragement or new idea. Sometimes, 15 minutes in the shower is the only time to listen to an audiobook or podcast. While short, this time can be enough to learn something new that may be applicable in your artistic or business process. Continue to learn and build your foundation, you never know where your knowledge base might take you. Not feeling a book today? Try some jazz or classical music to set the tone and mood for the rest of the day.


Follow along with me on Pinterest to see more ideas on creative visuals and how they can set you up for success.

What is True Vintage?

With the rise of e-commerce stores, Etsy, and EBay, there have been more and more vintage shops and sellers popping up on all platforms to peddle their wares. Not all shops are created equally, as there are many categories and niches among the broad tag “vintage”. Google the term “vintage clothing” and you’ll see results come up with mostly reproduction, or loosely inspired vintage clothing shops, which stack the first few pages of returned sites. Browse the vintage section of Etsy and you’ll find items from antiques to late 90’s graphic tees (Etsy deems any item 20 years or older to be vintage). Vintage is a broad term, so it’s time to get specific.

You may see the term “True Vintage” popping up on your Instagram or in tagged photos of your favorite vintage-wearing muse. This phrase is being used to categorize authentic clothing and accessories pre-1965 (arguably 1960, but generally the pre-polyester explosion era). Just search the term #vintage on Instagram, you’ll see why there’s a need for more descriptive terminology for an era of such great silhouettes and fine attention to detail. Some true vintage collectors say the shape and make of the clothing is more flattering, as opposed to today’s fashion, which is over-exposing in a cheap and tacky way. Fair enough.

Most of the fabrics and details of true vintage garments are notably high-quality even though they are 60+ years old and often hand-made. Garments can frequently be found with mends or small repairs, as times of war and economic instability lead to a generation of frugal, and handy people who fixed their belongings rather than replaced them. Many collectors know to expect small flaws and even find them charming. Fast fashion, mass manufacturing, and outsourcing later changed the way people bought, wore, and discarded clothes.

In a nutshell, true vintage is authentic clothing from the first half of the 20th century or before, including antique garments. Women (and men too!) are gaining a huge appreciation for fashion history by loving and wearing clothes from previous generations. Keep your eyes out for true vintage focused shops and sellers, as they can be tucked away, like hidden gems in the vast internet desert. Find boutiques, fashion bloggers, and Instagram fashionistas who style in early vintage by looking through the True Vintage tags on social media. Google still has some catching up to do.