As you all know, I either sew or knit all of my ‘vintage’ articles of clothing… I rarely purchase them. I do have to admit to you all, I actually feel guilty when I buy a vintage garment instead of making it. It feels like cheating.
Before you interject to tell me I’m crazy….I’m actually snickering to myself as I just typed that ’cause it does sounds pretty silly. Do any of you feel guilty buying vintage garments? This doesn’t include shoes & needed accessories, but only includes items I know I could make.
Speaking of shoes, I wanted to share with you guys my recent Etsy purchases…
I had recently bought 3 pairs of size 4 shoes on etsy since they were so cheap. But as I suspected, 2 pairs out of the three are too narrow for my feet.
These 40’s brown ones are so perfect and pristine; I dearly wish they fit!
These bright shoes are actually a tad too long for my feet.
The third pair is tight & very high, but somewhat wearable. They’ll be perfect (in photos at least) once I make something green to go along with them. heh
I spent $20 on each of these pairs of shoes and I’ll only be able to kinda-wear one of them. You may think it’s crazy spending this kind of money since I can’t even return them. But having small feet is one of my major challenges. It’s difficult enough finding shoes I like in normal stores (that aren’t black or kids shoes), let alone vintage styles. So for me, it’s worth the gamble.
Anyone have size 4, narrow feet and are looking for vintage shoes? :)
Around the same time, I paid a whopping $15 for these 50’s semi-spectator pumps and they’re perfect!
I’ve been hunting around for some full-fledged spectators for close to 6 months. heh These ones seemed pretty close and they’re comfortable enough for daily wear.
As you may have noticed, this is one thing I’m always on the hunt for… size 4, 40’s and 50’s era shoes. I scour Etsy nearly daily, hoping for new size 4 shoes to pop up along with looking on Nordstroms and Naturalizer on a regular basis since they carry my size.
You’d think small shoes would be easier to come by since (as I’m told) back in the day, people used to be smaller. I don’t really find that’s the case since I have a hard time finding their shoes, but their feet sure do seem to be narrower. heh
Fast forward to this past week….
Planning ahead like a good husband, Felix was doing some research to see what was nearby Sawyer, Michigan, he came across Apparel from the Past:
When he first told me about the place I was very *mehh* about it. I felt bad since he was expecting me to squeal with delight. As the days went but I was becoming more and more excited by the idea of finding shoes, hats, purses, etc. at this place. And once I walked inside the shop I was amazed! There was soo much to look through and sadly I was in a rush since the whole family was with me.
One of the first questions I asked Marsha, the store owner, was “Do you have any size 4 shoes?” I was expecting a “No”, but was completely astounded when she said “YES!”
Two of the pairs she showed me were too narrow, but the third one was PERFECT! I would have bought them then and there, but the sole of one of the shoes had split due to the old age. She then offered them to me for $15, and I decided not to take them since I didn’t think they could be fixed. But this shoe-lesson has taught me to hope…. somewhere out there is a perfect pair of 40’s shoes that will fit. Where there’s one, there’s more.
I then turned to the racks and racks of clothes and began shopping quickly.
I tried on a few dresses that were either too big/small along with some separates. I ended up purchasing two button up blouses and a navy, wide brim hat that needs a bit of TLC.
This cream blouse looks eerily similar to my recent 50’s scalloped-peplum blouse. They both have peplums, they both have cut on sleeves, and they both have gathers at the shoulder. heh This is where I start to feel guilty…. I could have made this identical blouse using my mail order 2629 pattern. But this top was only $15 and I’m almost positive I would have spent more just to buy a similar fabric. A little less guilty… but still….
This one I don’t feel guilty about. Behold, the cutest golf-T:
This top fits like a glove! It’s a women’s blouse, but the label says it’s tailored like a man’s shirt. I paid $25 for it, which is a bit much, but I haaaad to have it.
It’s a light tan color with olive stripes. The shop owner was asking if I golfed… Nope, no golfing here. :)
In 2012, I actually feel like I’ve been spending a lot less money on store-bought clothing. I believe I’ve only gone to the store to buy 1 or 2 pairs of trousers, a pair of workout pants, and as you know I recently bought a bathing suit online. The only other (non-vintage) purchases I can think of were for shoes. Nearly everything else I’ve made myself.
What’s even stranger is that this hasn’t even been a conscious choice. I’ve been in the mentality that if I need something, I need to look in my fabric stash & pattern stash to make it. I think this is why I feel a bit guilty buying vintage clothing, I know I can make it myself, and buying it is only giving me instant gratification. (Golf blouse aside….) heh
Conclusion to this post:
I feel as if I’ve opened up a can of worms! I wanted to show you guys my recent fun purchases (even the shoes that didn’t work). But I’ve begun to delve into consumerism vs. make-do & mend. I can keep talking about it… but like I said, it’s a can of worms that’s worthy of a post in itself.
Related to this topic, have you read Vintage Vixen’s recent review of the book: Overdressed, the shockingly high cost of cheap fashion yet? I seem to have the same conclusion as Solanah:
I could go on. And I might in the future, but when it comes right down to it, I really think you should read this book.
I’m not certain I need to read the book since I already seem to be in the same mindset as the author. But I may since I’m nerdy and like to have a solid understanding of the facts before forming opinions of my own. Blame in on the ‘researchy-math’ side of my brain.
Have any thoughts to share on my recent purchases or on consumerism vs. make-your-own?
And do let me know if you (or anyone you know) is interested in the size 4 narrow shoes that don’t fit me. I’ll cut you a really good deal. :)