Sunday, 1 January 2017

State of the vintage wardrobe: don't care

Every year I do a post looking at what I've bought, clothes-wise, over the past twelve months. What worked, what didn't, what I'd like more of, and so on. There's always some direction to this: a plan to get a couple more bags, move beyond the basics to something more stylish, that sort of thing. In last year's version of this post I said I felt I'd found a comfortable place, and didn't have many firm plans. I wanted more trousers – got those – and some pencil skirts – still need those. I wanted to wear a wider variety of my jewellery, which started out with me trying to wear a different piece each day, but that sort of backfired as I realised I wasn't wearing my favourite pieces in order to save them. But I did at least get more out of the box.


The truth is, right now I'm not really fussed about clothes. Part of that is that I'm currently unable to wear many of my favourites; 2017 is going to see some effort to lose some lard. I'm not desperate to be thin, but I do want to wear the things I got in 2015! But also (and this is a happier thing) I currently feel like I have enough. I have trousers for when I'm feeling lazy. Cotton dresses for hot days. Tartan skirts and knitwear for cold ones. Nice sparkly things to choose from. Comfy shoes. Buying something different isn't going to turn me into Tara King or Sharron Macready. Why not just enjoy what I've got?

2016: the hits
Most of the vintage things I bought and liked in 2016 were unplanned, and an awful lot were from Kinky Melon or another trader at Judy's Affordable Vintage Fair. I think of Judy's as like a slightly upscale version of charity shopping: I've no idea what I'm going to get, but it won't cost the earth. I've been really happy with the 1960s pieces I've bought over the past year, such as the two dresses at the top of the page.

I've also been really happy with stuff I've got from Seasalt. Boden's prints weren't really 'me' this year – and I know everyone sneers at Boden, but their stuff is good quality and comes in fatgirl sizes, so I like it. Seasalt is more casual in style, with lots of tunics and so on, but their unique prints have a deco feel that I really like. I bought a dress from them to take on holiday to Spain, and it wasn't cheap, but I've worn the dress loads and always feel good in it, so that makes it a win.

I've been finding a lot of repro annoying: it's simply not accurate enough for my liking. But the dresses Mr Robot got me from House of Foxy were fab, especially the Hostess dress, which has become my go-to for smart occasions.

2017
I want loafers and brogues in more interesting colours. I'll keep looking at Boden and Seasalt for tops with fun, interesting prints. I'll stick to that 60s silhouette. But other than that, I have no real plans. I'll see what drifts my way!

Have you got a clothing wishlist for the coming year?

31 comments :

  1. I want to try and make more clothes this year, both knitted and sewn so I will see how that goes. Only vague ideas so far. Like you I have no wish to be thin but I would like to fit more of the items in my wardrobe so I better loose some lard to assist that!

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    1. I am hoping to knit myself a few 1960s tops. I think that will sort out some of the problem I have with separates.

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  2. You've looked incredibly stylish this year, so whatever you're doing, you're doing it right. I wish I had some sort of plan, but I don't. I need to move out some clothes this year that don't get worn, so perhaps that's my 2017 plan.

    Happy New Year.

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    1. You seem able to find so many amazing things. I do find you inspirational - 'What would Goody do?' is one of the questions I sometimes ask myself. (If not you, Vix.)

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  3. No Mim, I definitely have not! I buy and spend too much in the charity shops as it is and intend to shop smarter this year - buy quality pieces and things that I love. Like you I've got enough of everything that I need - and more!

    I think your 60s dresses suit you beautifully and you can dress them up or down.

    The weather at the moment is so gloomy it's a wonder any of us bother getting dressed at all!

    Happy New Year to you and Mr. Robot.

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    1. I like 60s dresses because they're simultaneously incredibly simple and have a definite style. I can't be doing with faffy clothes.

      Quality is always best. I hate it when things I like wear out, so the better the quality, the longer I'll have them for.

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  4. I'm 57 and apart from liking v necks in anything I have no idea what suits me. How can I get to 57 without this basic information? You always look fab. I need to spend some time on this but as we are travelling for three months from 1st Feb just on hand luggage it's a goal for later in the year. Happy new year.

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    1. If you're doing a lot of travelling, some polyester will deffo be your friend - it dries really fast and doesn't need ironing.

      Are you doing a road trip? It sounds fascinating!

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  5. No clothing wishlist or specific plans for me this year - I'll just buy what I come across and suits me. If pushed, I would like a summery 70s maxi dress, but none of the vintage ones I've come across and like are in my size - they're all too small!

    P.S. Here's wishing you a happy, healthy and creative 2017, Mim :-D

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    1. I almost never see 70s maxis - I wonder where they're all hiding?!

      I bet if you tell Vix what you're looking for, she'll find you what you want. She finds 60s stuff in fatgirl sizes for me.

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  6. I'm pretty much in the same state about my wardrobe, no massive changes just want to fit in to some of the older stuff! Would like some more trousers though.

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    1. I got my trousers from Next, of all places. Their 'slouch' suit trousers are perfect for me. I like blokey trousers.

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  7. I'd like to buy less and enjoy what I've got to, but it hasn't worked so far. I'm such a magpie (but don't let Gisela hear this). You did really well with those 1960s dresses, but the Seasalt dress looks stunning on you too! xxx

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    1. You do buy some great things, though. Keep on magpie-ing. (I don't think you'll out-magpie Gisela, though.)

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  8. Now there's a woman with bags of confidence and a flipping fabulous wardrobe! You look gorgeous, confidence and tremendously stylish in all three outfits (and I'm not biased, honest!)
    The Boden & Seasalt I come across in chazzas are always well made and top quality. If I could find myself one of those Boden Vivienne peacock print trouser suits for an affordable price I'd be thrilled.
    Keeping my eyes peeled for fabulous shoes! xxx

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    1. It's funny, but the three dresses do seem to have more in common than I'd realised - simple shapes, medium length, graphic patterns. Basic Mim is Basic.

      Boden's AW16 didn't impress me much; their prints weren't as strong. Perhaps they'll do better for summer.

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  9. I don't have a wishlist which is probably why I keep ending up with disasters! I must confess to owning 2 more pairs of brogues due to the Clarks sale......

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    1. Brogues are so practical, they're more of a necessity than an indulgence.

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    1. It's fab - Vix finds the best stuff!

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  11. You're funny Mim! State of the current wardrobe: don't care.
    But actually I rather love this type of post where people reflect on personal style progression, hits and misses and how it all fits with what's happening in life.
    I love the modern blue shift dress on you. You look fabulous in it. The colour and shape are just great. And as for your session in the suit? Still making me laugh. Xxx

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    1. I like simple shapes. Even in my goth days, I never wore anything too complicated. I'm hoping Seasalt's summer 17 patterns are as good.

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  12. Mim, you always look great. I really like the way that you mix RTW with vintage in your wardrobe but always look consistent and not "costumey" like some of the repro stuff out there. That turquoise dress is a favourite. You have some great jewellery pieces too and some very delectable handbags. I have not idea about what I want this year but I seem to only have work wear. All my going-out or casual stuff is either too small or completely fubared. I am having a bit of a stye crisis but would like to get a bit more creative. I do have a budget of about £2.50 so better hit the charity shops. :) Xx

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    1. I'm really not into a lot of repro. Many of the budget ranges aren't really repro at all, imo; their stuff bears virtually no resemblance to actual vintage clothing.

      I do like my handbags - I don't own many, but I have a definite style there - and jewellery always matters to me. It doesn't have to be pricy, but it does have to be nice. When everything else is so simple, anything crappy is glaringly obvious.

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    2. As for style crisis, my approach would be to find a shift dress in a plain colour/ classic pattern (eg tartan or tweed) and then ring the changes with accessories. They're cheaper than garments, so you can play with different looks without breaking the bank.

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    3. Thanks Mim,that's a great idea. Xx

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  13. I must, I simply MUST say it again: HAPPY New Year, dear Mim!
    Your year in wardrobe should start with the "purge". If you have made the choice to keep the ones you already have & enjoy them as much as you can, then you should (as I did) go over your entire hanger, and "cut" all those that no longer fit the joy-factor. :)
    Oh, happy times are ahead of us!

    Marija

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    1. Thank you!

      I'm not getting rid of any more clothes, I am walking and walking and walking in the hopes of getting rid of a bit of Mim and getting back into some :-)

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  14. I think that Seasalt dress is just smashing on you! And you made some really good purchases (that suit!). I have been whittling stuff out of my wardrobe - if it's not amazing, or just really practical (yoga wear) then I've been ditching it.

    I think I'll be curbing my shopping further in 2017 as I want to try and make a few more things myself. I think a few special purchases, and any charity shop bargains, but not bothering with mid priced mediocrity!

    We'll see how that goes, I'm terribly weak-willed when it comes to clothes... x

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    1. Mediocrity is the worst, isn't it? The sort of thing that gets kept because it was a tad too pricy to simply get rid of, but never makes you feel good to wear.

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  15. I love your look, it's so very Mim. I don't believe I'll be looking to buy this year, except for perhaps jumpers and cardis, but I would like to work through my sewing patterns which I have hoarded like a squirrel xxx

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