Thursday, August 8, 2013


A story:

Hopefully, this isn't too redundant for those of you who have been following me from the start, but I think most of you are more recent followers. So last year, I bought an incredible 40s gator purse at work. The purse is epic, but the best feature of the purchase was what I found tucked in one of the zipper pockets - a telegram, from 1946.

Now, when it comes to old things, I tend to be a huge romantic. (Whereas I'm basically a giant cynic when it comes to everything else... derp.) So when I found this I thought - "Eeee!!! This guy sent a telegram to his sweetheart when he got back from the war, she tucked it into her purse, and it's been there ever since!!" The cynic in me rolled my eyes at myself, but as it turns out, that's exactly what happened. Thanks to my good pal the Internet, I ended up solving some mysteries. Audrey & William did get married when he got home, and they had 5 kids. I looked up the home phone number of one of their daughters, and made a very strange phone call to Maryland. It was such a shot in the dark, but I wanted to know more about Audrey & William - and most importantly, I wanted them to have the telegram back. In the end, it was returned to its rightful owners, and I'm still lucky enough to have and cherish Audrey's gator purse. 

Audrey & William's family was kind enough to send me some photos of the two from the 40s, you can check out this adorable couple here. As if all that weren't lovely enough, it resulted in me becoming friends with Audrey & William's great granddaughter, Emily. On Sunday, I had the pleasure of meeting her & her family, who happened to be on a vacation to Washington. 

Emily is just-the-sweetest, and brought me some incredible goodies - 2 bakelite bangles, some lush new mink friends, and a pretty pewter bangle. (Thank youuuu!) She definitely did not need to do any such thing, for meeting her was already such a treat. This story still boggles my mind. Jaynie calls this kind of crazy universe situation "cosmuckery". It's not just a matter of "oh hey small world", it's illustrates how we can all be intertwined by threads we aren't even aware of. All it takes is something like a purse, a telegram, and some googling... and here we are, our lives randomly running into one another. 

Ahhh! Ok - onto the clothes portion of a massive geek out.

After meeting Emily, I attempted to clean my apartment before I met up with Jaynie. Uhh... yeah, that didn't work. (Of course, it took me only 15 minutes to clean everything the next day. Good lord, Sara.) I may or may not have been kind of grumpy & faking it for the first few of these shots. But that changed pretty quickly, because that's what hanging out with your best friend does. I only share this with you to explain this photo - which couldn't be left out, for it was too good. Being a 27 year old baby.

The wider yellow carved one in front is from Emily - how gorgeous is that?!

This poor dress. I kid you not, there are at least 50 holes in it. It's swiss cheese status. Yet I will wear it til it straight up falls off me & turns to dust. The rayon jersey has an unusual slightly glossy sheen to it, which I've never seen. Someday it will meet the True Death, but the time has yet to come as far as I'm concerned. When it comes to my closet, I may be an era snob, but I'm not one to bat an eye at questionable condition. In some cases, it actually just makes me love something more. But then again, I think I'm morbidly attracted to the decay (hell, if I'm being honest, the wearing of dead people's stuff as well.)  Everyone is different when it comes to this, it's always interesting to hear people's takes on it. If we're going to play devil's advocate here, I've even heard the argument that wearing things to death is irresponsible vintage ownership. I don't think that applies to this dress, for it came into my life already patched & ridden with holes, but I suppose I could see it being applicable to minty vintage. What do you think?

Wow, that was more writing than usual! Hope you didn't mind;)


1940s dress & sandals: Lucky Vintage / Lucky Dry Goods
1940s purse & 1950s hat: Red Light
Bakelite earrings: dollar bin!
Bakelite bangles: here & there... and Emily, of course!
1940s WWII necklace: flea market


  1. What a story! It's just too wonderful!! Thanks for sharing such a heartwarming and charming tale!

    And what an outfit! I love these hues on you!!


  2. what a beautiful outfit again. wow, it's so colourful!
    ... since a friend of mine told me, that she believes 'wearing vintage is destroying pieces of history' - i think a lot about wearing vintage and i feel a little guilty everytime i jump in one of my dresses.
    actually my friend comes from another point - should i say 'earlier time'. she is mostly sewing barock and rococo clothes(actually all kind of historic costumes). she spends hours in fashion museums studying the way how things got tailored back then. i really do understand what she is talking about ... every piece a vintage enthusiast wears to pieces is lost for younger generations. what shall i do? i love vintage, i don't like reproductions. if i find reproductions i really like, i can't afford them. ... during the last week i started to wear two 50s blouses that were in mint condition. i kind of felt bad but they were sitting in my suitcase (bought them on the flea market before we left to berlin)and i really needed to add them to my very limited sublet-wardrobe. now they're not mint anymore and i try to take as much care of them as i take of all of my vintage treasures.
    maybe i should open a museum and not a shop.

    for sure your little colourful dress will still look that gorgeous with 100 little holes in it. may it be with you a very long time. :)

  3. What a great story! This is one of the best things about vintage when you can find the stories behind them. I love that you tracked these people down to find out the story of Audrey and William. Just grand! I could never tell that your dress had a bunch of holes in it. It's so awesome on the print scale. You really have some great print dresses! I have this fabric that has a note attached to it from a sister to another sister. I'm not sure how authentic it is but she tells her sister to make a nice dress from the fabric.

  4. That story was amazing!!! How cool that you found such a fantastic personal clue in the first place, and then were able to connect all the dots!

    You are such a fashion plate, as ever. I'm with you-- I wear my vintage 'til it literally crumbles away. I love a good ol' Miss Havisham piece with plenty of time-worn patina; if I wanted new-looking mint-condition vintage, I'd be wearing repro ;) I can see the preservationist angle for sure, but I usually keep my ruined-beyond-help vintage as display items anyway; it's not like I throw them out and they're lost forever once I can't wear them anymore!

  5. I'll dream of your glorious necklace tonight.....

  6. I remember reading the story on your blog before I had a blogger profile so I wasn't able to comment then... It's so great that you've been able to meet up with Audrey's family! And so amazing that they brought you some of her stuff!!!

    Oh and LOVE the hat! I'm looking for a similar-ish straw hat for when I go on holiday but can't find one! Though if I do manage to find one then I have the problem of packing it in my suitcase... I think I'd just have to wear it on the plane :)

  7. That is an amazing story. I daydream of connections like that and to see it happen in real life to you is just.... well... AMAZING!

    I adore this outfit to bits. Dress is stellar, holes or not, and I say fucking wear the damn thing and who cares! Are you getting paid to archive your collection? I'd much rather see someone wearing vintage then have it sitting in a box somewhere in some collector's collection, never to really see the light of day. I have plenty of items in various states of poor condition and it really doesn't bother me. In fact, I'd rather pay under $40 for sub-par condition 40s dress then pay hundreds for 1 pristine condition dress. Just the way I've been.

  8. What a truly amazing story! I'm relatively new to your blog so I had not read about this before. But it's a story I would not mind reading about again and again. The gator purse alone is to die for! But how fantastic to have found the telegram AND tracked down the family?! That is so heart warming. It's wonderful that the family was willing to share pictures with you, and all of us, of Audrey and William. Thank
    By the way, I love your red hat! And your dress is just darling. I think I would wear it too until it fell apart! lol :)

    Emily's Vintage Visions

  9. Wow. WOW WOW WOW!! I love this story! HOW AMAZING!!

    PS) "until it meets the True Death" - ha ha ha x

    1. bahaha, I knew at least one person would catch that xoxoxo

  10. What an incredible, inspiring story. I am a die hard romantic too, and will not soon forget this incredible tale.

    Your goodness vintage gracious, it's utterly and completely stunning. I adore wearing multiple colours at once like this and know that this ensemble will inspire some of my own future outfits.

    ♥ Jessica

  11. What an amazing story! That's remarkable that you actually met some of the family in person.

    And as for your dress... wow. Your outfit is AMAZING. And in a way, I think that wearing and photographing well-worn vintage is better than a lot of the other options for it... a lot of people would see something with that many holes and decide that it needs to be thrown away or cut up for rags, so I think wearing it is probably one of the more preservationist things to do.