Friday, December 18, 2009

For my fashionista friends: a photo of my vintage chenille peacock robe collection.

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One for every day of the week. I'm so ashamed.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Hey there! I know I've been promising to post more photos, but I've been so busy with my work that I haven't been able to get to it.

I do have great news, however. My article "Wearable Whimsy: Mid-Century Handbags" is in this month's edition of Antiques & Collecting Magazine!

As a professional freelance writer, I was very excited to see that one of my photos made the cover of a magazine!
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Pick up a copy today and you can read the article and see more photos of my purse collection.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Friday, May 29, 2009

How to Start a Wearable Vintage Clothing Collection

Wendy starts writing for eHow.com. Click the link below to see the article.

How to Start a Wearable Vintage Clothing Collection

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Sunday, April 12, 2009

Black and White Coil Cord Clutch. 1940s. Maker: Unknown. Lovely little “telephone cord” clutch purse with brass zipper closure. Different patterns on each side (see pics below). I’m always on the lookout for these. They fascinate me, probably because of the unusual texture. Isn't this one mesmerizing?

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Thursday, March 19, 2009

Plastic Purse with Rhinestones and Coordinating Lucite Heels. 1950s. Maker: Of purse, unknown. Of shoes, Deliso Debs. Fabulous plastic fold-over clutch purse with prong-set rhinestones and silver-tone closure. I purchased them with a pair of vintage size 6.5 Lucite-heeled Deliso Deb peep-toed shoes, which have a Lucite and rhinestone accent at the top. Bonus #1: They came with the original box! Bonus #2: Cost me under $10 for the purse AND the shoes (not including shipping)!

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Friday, February 20, 2009

White Basket Bag with Bird Motif. 1950s. Maker: Midas of Miami. White-painted wicker purse with Midas of Miami’s trademark gold rope handles, green velvet facing, gold trim and darling mother bird with baby bird appliqué, slightly padded for a three-dimensional effect. This purse is unusual in design, but also in that it has a second tag inside, which reads: Jane’s Boutique, Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Something else that should be noted: while it’s a great purse, the online seller indicated that it was in excellent condition, which it isn’t. There’s some major scarring and dinging of the paint, plus, when it arrived, it smelled of cigarette smoke, which is a HUGE peeve of mine. Sellers, please advertise honestly and, if you can avoid it, don’t smoke around the merchandise.

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Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Vinyl Train Tote. 1960s. Maker: Debbie – A Division of John Wind Imports. Adorable, glitter-painted train with three-dimensional metal wheels, faux gems and gold trim on a burlap-type fabric. This purse, its handles and closure are made of textured vinyl. It's similar to the kit purses of the 1960s—of which I have many—but, I was surprised to find the manufacturer’s label inside, which also says it was "Made in Japan." I Googled John Wind Imports and found that there were several different styles of bag made by the company, some under the “Debbie” name. I wonder if Debbie was a real person, or if they chose that name because it was such a typical ‘60s American girl moniker.

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Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Wooden Painted Birdie Box Bag. 1960s. Maker: Unknown. Handmade wooden box purse, possibly from a kit, with brass-colored hardware and faux mother-of-pearl handle. Hand-painted yellow flowers with green leaves and what I thought was a ducky, but, upon close inspection, looks more like a yellow songbird. Sorry about the soft-focus. And also my mannequin’s finger issue. It was a tragic accident. We don’t talk about it.

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Monday, February 16, 2009

Pair of Picnic-Themed Baskets. 1950s. Maker: Midas of Miami. I first wrote about this chianti/fruit/flower purse in September 2007, but I got another for my birthday from a wonderful vintage-loving friend of mine. What’s cool about having two of these is that you can see the subtle differences in the artwork: the placement of the appliqués, the uniqueness of the paint squiggles, and these purses also have different flower appliqués on the side—one has closed petals and the other is open. Another reason it’s cool to have two of the same? Because two purses are always better than one!

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Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Dyed Sheepskin Tote. 1970s. Maker: Unknown. Rectangular hippie-era purse made of sewn-together super-soft sheepskin squares in beige, brown, dark brown and rust. The circular handles are faux tortoiseshell. My friend Barb gave me this bag. While I love all my purses, it’s always nicer to know their provenance.

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Monday, January 19, 2009

Collins Horse-Themed Bucket Bag. 1960s. Maker: Collins of Texas. Linen-type fabric bucket bag featuring a horse print that makes playful puns. “Ol’ Paint” has a painter’s palette, “Appaloosa” has three-dimensional apples, the “Quarter Horse” has a real 1966 quarter sewn, via a plastic patch, to its rear, and the “Strawberry Roan” has three-dimensional strawberries. It’s not in the best shape, but it’s an adorable Collins bag that I haven’t seen before. Reminds me of my Collins poodle purse, which you can check out here (scroll down).

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Sunday, January 11, 2009

See-Through Plastic Clutch Purse with Coordinating Change Purse. 1960s. Maker: Unknown. Clear plastic clutch purse with goldtone hardware and chain, plus faux pearls, rhinestones, and a milk glass and bead appliqué in the center. The plastic is about the thickness of your standard inflatable pool raft. It isn’t quite a match to the clear plastic change purse with larger rhinestone accents that have been fastened, Bedazzler-style, to the exterior. The clutch came with the change purse, as well as the circa ‘60s matchbook from the Golden Gate Casino in Las Vegas, which is still around and bills itself as Las Vegas’s most historic hotel and casino.

This purse has yellowed with age, and, not to be gross, but it’s—well—sticky. It needs a cleaning, but I’m afraid to do it, because I don’t want the pearls to fall off. Seems sturdy enough, but you never know about old glue. Any suggestions are welcome.

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Friday, January 9, 2009

Wicker Butterfly Bag. 1960s. Maker: Tropic – Miami, Florida. Sturdy natural wicker box bag with goldtone and faux tortoiseshell hardware, and a plastic window that features a whimsical three-dimensional butterfly motif. The butterflies are felt, with gold rope antennae, gold glitter glue and hundreds of tiny beads. Butterflies were a very popular motif for this era, and there are lots of people who adore the colorful little winged creatures, but my 17-year-old gets very freaked out by them: “MOM! Have you ever seen their FACES? UGH!” Interestingly, butterfly faces rarely appear on purses.

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Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Unusual Coil Cord Purse. 1940s. Maker: Unknown. Incredible cylindrical purse with ivory “telephone cord”-type coils glued to its fabric sides. Top is reddish-brown molded plastic with a unique beads-in-a-ring clasp (see photo). Metal rims at the top and bottom are painted to match the plastic. There’s a mirror inside the top and a white plastic handle.

This is quite possibly the most unusual coil cord purse I’ve ever seen and certainly the most unusual in my personal collection. Reminds me of a mini-ice bucket. Bring on the champagne!

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Sunday, January 4, 2009

Floral Basket Purse. 1950s-60s. Maker: Midas of Miami. Wicker picnic basket-style bag with ecru velvet on the top and front, featuring three-dimensional appliquéd embroidered flowers, bows, embroidered and velvet leaves, gold glitter glue and gold swirl trim. Has the gold-braided handles that are typical Midas. I’m sure I’ve said it before, but I love, love, love this designer. It’s quite possible that I need some professional help.

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Saturday, January 3, 2009

Needlepoint Roses Mesh Purse. 1960s. Maker: Jolles Original. Brown mesh fabric bag with appliquéd needlepoint roses, green velveteen leaves, faux gems and green ribbon accent across the top. Also has multicolored beads glued on in a swirled design, resembling sprinkles on a birthday cake. When I first saw this purse, I thought it was a Caron of Houston bag, as its mixed media style is so typical of Caron, but most Caron bags have a black stretch knit fabric base beneath all the glitz. The shape of this bag is common for Jolles, whose designs often feature appliqués, including poodles, a very popular motif for this era. I love this one, though, because the tiny beads look so… tasty. Yum.

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Friday, January 2, 2009

Four Seasons Kit Purse. 1960s. Maker: Some crafty ‘60s housewife. Beige textured linen bag with beads, rhinestones, faux jewels and other shiny dealybobs that come together to create individual designs representing the four seasons, Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall (all you have to do is call) paying homage to Mr. Sun. Also has wooden side panels, envelope closure with goldtone twist hardware, vinyl handle and little metal feet.

Constructed from a kit, possibly manufactured by General Crafts Corp., a popular brand of that era. I have lots (and lots) of these purses (see previous posts), but what’s really nice about this one is that it has a top for full closure, instead of just being open, tote-bag style. The top protects your vintage wallet, embroidered hanky and rhinestone-covered lipstick mirror. You DO carry those with you at all times, don’t you?

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Thursday, January 1, 2009

Plastic Box Purse with Embellishments. 1950s. Maker: Theresa Bag Co., Lyndhurst, NJ. Small, rectangular, scalloped-sided, hard plastic purse featuring a milky pearlized lower portion, pearlized oblong handles and a clear top. The top has been embellished with pristine lacquered shells, faux pearls and leaf appliqués. I’ve seen more than a few Theresa handbags over the years, but this is a rare one in that it is embellished on top. It’s possible that the toppings were added later by one of the bag’s owners, but I don’t think so. Some people call these purses Lucite or Bakelite, which are trademarked names for thermoplastic acrylic resin, but I prefer to refer to them as plain ol’ plastic. Not that there’s anything plain about this adorable bag.

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