My childhood room in the one bedroom apartment my Mom and I shared (she took to the couch) was covered with black and white 8x10 glossy photos of Katherine Hepburn, James Stewart, Cary Grant, Ginger Rogers, Fred Astaire, Rita Hayworth, Lauren Bacall, Humphrey Bogart, and Lucille Ball. I would act out films like “Philadelphia Story” or An American in Paris with my Barbies wishing they had the fashions of these golden era stars rather than the neon 1980’s attire they came with. Weekends were spent at the Stanford Theatre in Palo Alto, CA taking in a double feature of films like Roman Holiday and Charade, and then hitting up the Penninsula Creamery for a chocolate mint chip ice-cream soda. I couldn’t wait ‘til I was 23 (the age I considered a real adult) and could wear the pencil skirts and elaborate hats worn by starlets of the past.
Since I reached adulthood, my collection of beautiful vintage fashion has grown (it has its own walk-in closet) and my love has never diminished. My extreme love has felt solitary in my life, however. None of my friends make the same vibrating “oooohhhhh” sound when they see a blouse from 1954 with delicate red embroidered polka dots, nor do they do a quick little hop at the sight of a small Mary Poppins-esque carpet bag. I not only make it clear I’m excited about the thought that I could actually have a piece so beautiful hanging in my closet, but I also send up an internal high pitched prayer that the price will be within my budget. The heart starts beating as I turn over the tag and either drops at the sight or the relief begs for an instant head rush.
Accepting long ago that I am alone in this intense attraction amongst those I know, I decided to find vintage lovers elsewhere. Where better to search? Vintage shops of course! I will be interviewing an owner once a month to pick their brains so I can share with all of you their stories as well as their current vintage fashion tips. In between these interviews, I will share how vintage laces through my everyday life and how a connection to the past enhances my present.