In Your Wildest Dreams

If you’re a usual reader of vmmv, you’ll probably remember my love-post about my beautiful, vintage green coat and the store that I discovered it in:

vintage storeFor years, I’ve been making visits to my favorite vintage store and I never fail to emerge without another piece I’ve fallen in love with and had to take home with me. This week, I finally had time to make another trip into the treasure trove that is In Your Wildest Dreams Antiques and Consignments, and do a bit more thorough photo-shoot/interview of the lovely women who share my love of all things NOT of this era. I’ve been wanting to do something like this for awhile, and when the ladies were so receptive of my idea, I couldn’t wait to share what I found with my blog-friends. So, here it is, a little peak into another world from the past that’s no longer just in your dreams:

in your wildest dreams

Living in the smallish, central California town of Bakersfield, “vintage,” “Hollywood glam,” “mod,” or “urban,” are labels that usually don’t enter your mind. Ah, but then you haven’t wandered into this hidden gem and spoken to Alissa and Alex, the vintage-experts working behind the counters of In Your Wildest Dreams who answered some questions I had for them with rather brilliant things I never even thought about!

Why would you choose a vintage piece over a new one? Alissa: “There’s more history to a vintage piece than a new one; their timeless, the material is higher quality, every piece is super unique, and it’s as if you’re wearing a story.”

How do you make a vintage outfit work in today’s world and still look up-to-date? Alex: “Wear whatever you’ve chosen with confidence.” Alissa: “That’s true, Alex picks out the ugliest, 80’s piece from the racks and she comes in the next day looking so adorable because she’s confident about her choice. Know your own style, and wear it with a sense of pride because vintage pieces are finds, you have to really look around to find good pieces.”

What should you look for when buying vintage clothing? Alissa: “Look for labels, in-tact seams, and most importantly, waists that fit you. Most vintage pieces run small since up until the 1960’s, women were wearing corsets.”(duh! why didn’t I think of that, I thought. Everytime I try on vintage things I’m always slightly horrified at how tiny the waists are…of course! I completely forgot the ladies of the past had a little extra assistance in the waist-department.)

vintage clothing

Whose your fashion muse? Alissa: “Dita Von Teese  Alex: *with a laugh* “The 80’s band, Dynasty.”

Favorite fashion era: Alissa: “The 30s to 1964, I like the corseted waist-look.” Alex: “The 80’s!”

Hardest vintage find:  Alissa: “Probably pants, jeans, casual wear, or lingerie.” I commented that I always feel like I need someplace to go when I wear vintage because the pieces are so dressy. Alissa suggested the best way to do casual-vintage is to pair a 1950’s style blouse with a modern pair of jeans or cigarette pants. It’s also a great way to keep old things feeling fresh.

What made you fall in love with vintage? Alissa: “Probably when I started sewing (she makes corsets!). It’s easier to see how an older item was made because the construction was so much better, and the seaming is flawless. Plus, building a wardrobe with vintage pieces is sort of a process of self-creation, you create an image from scratch from the pieces you find instead of copying a model from an ad. And, it’s sexy!”

 Men respond more to elegance rather than the current trends. If you’re doing a pin-up girl vibe, even though you’re covered up, it’s weird, but men find it way more attractive than the super short things.

I almost fell down and kissed her feet when she said that. That’s the whole reason I started my blog, I almost screamed in excitement! To show that classic femininity still has some serious power in today’s world! I settled on a vigorous nod of agreement and a huge smile as I wrote down her quote instead…no need to scare off a new kindred spirit just when you’ve made the acquaintance.

Where are the best places to shop for vintage clothing? Alex: “Bakersfield is actually one of my favorites! You wouldn’t think it’s true, but small cities are better for vintage finds. Alissa: “She’s right, in big cities like Los Angeles, vintage items are constantly being traded, worn, and resold. In smaller cities it’s easier to find pieces that have sometimes been cared for by the original owners. And if you look in non-touristy towns, you’ll also find the cheapest prices.” As she said this, Alissa showed me her beaded, vintage black cardigan she was wearing. She said it had the same owner for forty years when she found it, and she was right, it was nearly flawless and super-cute. Who would of thought? Bakersfield, or maybe I should say, In Your Wildest Dreams, is something of a vintage Mecca.

And finally, just for fun, would you ever consider buying/wearing a vintage wedding dress? Alissa: “I have!” Alex: “Definitely. Even vintage gowns that weren’t intended to be a wedding gown can look fantastic because they’re so exquisite.”

Finds from Your Wildest Dreams:

how to vintage shop

Yet again, I found some adorable pieces as I ran around snapping photos for this blog-spread: A 60’s era mod dress, some adorable scarves with great colors and vintage fabrics with nary a tear in sight, some wintery skirts I thought would be so classy to wear to a Christmas party, and even a full-length gown that could be paired with a modern, tailored jacket and heels for a seamless blend of vintage and new:

vintage holiday outfits

The detail and fit is what I love the most about these pieces. You couldn’t walk into a store today and find things with the beading and tailoring that these items have. And of course, I’m always a sucker for a 1950’s clutch or handbag with a snap:

vintage skirt

When I saw this little lace coat, I instantly thought of Doris Day in the movie That Touch of Mink. She wore a green-tinted lace housecoat just like this when she goes to Bermuda with Cary Grant. I think this coat is actually meant for outdoor wear, but I would definitely wear it as a sweet little overcoat for my pajamas. It’s finds like these that keep me dreaming about the next thing I’ll find at In Your Wildest Dreams:

vintage clothing like doris day

I’m so thankful to the ladies at the store for letting me quiz them and run around squealing and taking photos of my favorite pieces. If you’re local, I’m certain you’ll fall in love with this place, and if you’re not, take these tips to your own treasure trove. As Alissa put it best, the vintage “process of self-creation” is one you can’t get just by heading to the mall. Happy hunting!

– <3 A.

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white christmas stylephoto by alexandrial  upstairs downstairs     

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Favorite Things: Gift Ideas

Perhaps it’s because I’ve been writing about it so the headlines about gender roles, women in the workplace, and the ongoing battle-of-the-sexes talks jump out at me more, but it seems like lately, for whatever reason, this topic has leaped to the top of social issues.

Putting all the debate aside though, and regardless of what side of the battle you’re on, I can’t imagine why anyone would willingly give up on, hide, suppress, or ignore one’s femininity. So, in honor of being a girl, and in the hopes of offering a few gift ideas for the ever-nearing Christmas Day (eeek! Yes, I still need to shop too), here’s a few of my favorite things about being, simply, a woman:

1. Petite cherie camera strap by Bloom theory |2. renewed nostalgia lace skirt

gifts via

3. famous frocks pattern dress making book | 4. Ma petite knit shoes and english breakfast tea for one set gifts

5. The little guide to vintage shopping by melody fortier and joan bow flats in nude

gift ideas

6. customized typewriter key cufflinks and Men’s tie chevron neckties | 7. By the creek ruffled scarf in mustard

Hopefully you get lots of your favorite things this Christmas, or, at least get some lovely lady (or a fine fella) in your life something that suits them. These are just a few of my favorite things from Shop Ruche  and Etsy’s men’s collections, check them out if you’re hitting a wall in the idea-room, they’ve got so many adorably-unique and vintage-inspired things for everyone you can imagine. Happy weekend everyone!

    -<3 A.

Vintage Finds

I was working a bit of overtime this weekend. I had hoped that I would be able to show you a new idea I’m working on for The Linen Closet but the prototypes didn’t turn out exactly as I wanted so the full reveal will have to wait.

Something I can reveal though is a few recent finds from my favorite vintage store. Vintage stores can be a little scary, but combing through some seriously hideous, 70’s beaded apparel, and some 80’s suits that I don’t think will ever be vintage enough to become attractive again, is usually well worth the effort. More often than not, they are usually full of hidden gems.

vintage plaid and wool skirt

This wool, plaid skirt was perfect for entering the winter months. The best part about vintage stores is the clothing from the 50’s and 60’s was made so well that you can’t even tell the skirt is decades old. I will say though, the women must have been miniatures of modern women because, goodness, the waists are so tiny! A wool skirt in perfect condition for $12.00 was quite the find.

vintage ascot blouseI thought this polka-dot ascot blouse would look lovely with a black pencil skirt. Besides, there’s something about polka dots that I just can’t put back, so it came home with me.

And, at last, my fav:

vintage doris day inspired coat

I fell in love with this coat the moment I saw it. After my first round of glee was over though, I was a bit hesitant to buy it. The color is not enhanced at all, it’s really truly THAT green. I’m definitely not one for neon colors, and usually don’t buy green that often, but I couldn’t get past the tailoring of it and I had to take the plunge:

vintage coat

vintage doris day inspired coatWhat finally convinced me was thinking of Doris Day and her film-wardrobes, always chock-full of brightly colored coats that matched almost any outfit imaginable.

When shopping for outerwear it seems silly to get anything that you can’t wear with everything. So, I usually settle on brown, black, navy blue, or grey. Sometimes though, it’s just fun to be a little outrageous.

It did actually come with a matching dress, but the zipper needs a bit of help from a tailor and (don’t worry) I definitely won’t be wearing them together. Doris Day might be able to pull it off but I’ll stick to making my statements separately.

– <3 A. 

Classy Pajamas. Promise.

Happy Monday. Nope, I didn’t want to get dressed today either. Committing the Wear-Pajamas-in-Public-Crime never seems quite so awful come Monday morning.

Inevitably though, my “I don’t want to take off my robe” mood always seems to clash with my “but why can’t I look like Doris Day everyday” mood:

Thus, my Monday-morning-lifesaver solution has become: Wrap dresses!


All of these beauties came from  These options are a bit pricey, but I have found delightful options from New York designers “Emma and Michelle” at Ross and Marshalls for no more than $20.00!

The wrap dress is pretty much the MacGyver of fashion. A go-anywhere-travel-excellently-go-on-like-a-robe-yet-still-look-classy-dress… And trust me, the wrap dress can rise to almost any occasion. I have two such dresses gracing my closet, ready to save me from the moody Mondays, but these classic creations have also carried me through a Bachelorette wine-tasting all-day event, (where I drove for three hours and emerged with nary a wrinkle in sight!) a trip to a museum, multiple days at the office, a casual Sunday morning, and an evening graduation party to name a few.

Wear pajamas in public? It sure feels like it, but it looks divine.