I don’t think it’s necessary to wear head to toe vintage or repro to achieve a vintage look. Although, I’ve never exactly been part of the vintage mafia (aka the vintage fashion police) so I’m probably not actually the best person to ask…One thing I’ll freely admit to though is being restrictive in what I wear because I don’t want to get it wrong. As silly as this sounds surely I’m not the only one who sometimes feels this way?
For example; I always stick to the same basic hair styles I know because I would rather not try something new because god forbid I make a mistake, or worse – it doesn’t suit me. Before you ask, yes I am that bland person that goes to a restaurant, studies the menu intensely only to order the exact same dish every week. Well, I wouldn’t want to order something I might not like – would I?
So usually to try something new I have to be forced or tricked into it. Anytime we order Thai food, without fail my husband will bring up the time I had to be coerced into trying it for the first time and was certain that I would hate it. Only for it to become one of my favourite foods that determined why in the end I couldn’t live in Russia full time. No, really. Because I couldn’t get Pad Thai delivered to my doorstep I went on a several hour long pilgrimage to find ingredients to make it myself. Which wasn’t easy in Moscow, just so you know.
There you can’t just pop into the supermarket to grab some bean sprouts, coriander, rice noodles, Pad Thai paste…Oh, no. Instead I spent two hours on public transport, another half an hour wondering around seedy and unfamiliar alley ways…until I finally found the only Vietnamese fresh produce market in Moscow which happened to sell many of the essentials also required for Thai dishes. And then made the long journey back home, cooked my Pad Thai, and thought about how I missed Australia.
If you’re wondering how this story ties in with my outfit, I’m getting there. For those that don’t know, the combination of a low Australian dollar, increased shipping rates, and the fact that we are now being lumped with sales tax if we buy from overseas – means I’ve had to improvise a little. And in doing so, expand my horizons to the high street. Which is why I’ve been mixing a lot of high street pieces with my repro outfits lately. It just makes things a little easier. With the money I do save by doing this it means I can still afford to shop with my favourite overseas repro brands. But just not as much as I used to previously.
Separates are probably the best way for doing this, because it’s easier to buy one good quality repro investment piece that you can mix with non repro basics. I really love to mix The Seamstress of Bloomsbury blouses with high street finds! Their blouses have that true vintage look which really pulls together a vintage outfit. The fact that they have such a diverse range of styles, colours and prints makes them very easy to mix and match. Although of course if you’re after something that will go with nearly everything then your best bet is any of their cream blouses. The Greta blouse which I’m wearing here goes with so many things, it really is perfect.
Obviously you’re not going to find vintage appropriate things in every high street shop. But you just keep your eye out and your mind open because with vintage looks making a comeback in the mainstream you never know where they will pop up next. These trousers were a very happy find recently and I actually got them in two colours. According to the label they are meant to be culottes…but because I’m pretty short I can get away with wearing them like full length vintage trousers.
The shop I got them from sells typical contemporary clothing – lots of club wear and those sorts of styles. Not somewhere I would have previously gone looking for vintage inspired pieces and yet here I am, going back every few weeks to see if something catches my eye. I always focus on looking for prints and fabrics that one might see on a vintage piece, and of course making sure it has the right fit. So if you’re wondering why it is that there’ll be high street pieces appearing here and there on the blog over the next few months – this is why.
Despite it being nearly what, eight? Nine? Years since I started wearing vintage looks? Who knows really, even I forget…I am still very firmly in love with vintage fashion. So that’s not going to change. Not ever I don’t think…But I am going to be looking at improvising more with high street finds to create the same vintage inspired looks I have always loved.