I have spent the last few weeks sorting, steaming, mending and merchandising lovely gowns and dresses for the spring/summer season. I even had the experience of my first Vintage Clothing Show in Toronto. All I can say is: Wow!
As a lover of all things vintage for many years, I never made the pilgrimage to a Vintage Clothing Show- and am sorry I did not. Aisles and aisles of people just-like-me- people who have dedicated their lives to finding that perfect item and celebrating it. Perhaps I am romanticizing it, but that is how I felt as I wandered the many booths offering precious finds from all over.
Not only did I appreciate the merchandise. I had solid, meaningful conversations with many of the people selling: A Real Estate agent who just sold for fun, a young man who looked more like a funky musician than a seller and a lady who enjoyed the 'thrill of the hunt.' Such amazing personal stories that led us all to the same place.
There was a definite buzz in the air, as people searched for everything from a smoking jacket to that perfect wedding dress. We were all on a mission. Truth be told, I spent just as much time 'people watching' as I did buying. Such incredible styles and individual tastes- completely inspiring and exhilarating!
Since the show, I have really thought about the personal aspect of wearing a vintage piece. Not only do we have to take it out of the store and incorporate it into our own wardrobes- but it's almost as though we have given that item a chance of 'living' again. I know I am personifying the clothes-but I have been privileged to know where some of the clothes came from and who wore them. Most of the clothing in this store comes from an era where people did not discard their things as readily as we do now- the dress you buy here today may have been the only 'fancy' dress in a lady's closet. It would have held a significance to her, as she would only have worn that dress to special occasions.
I have tried on certain hats that carry such charm and elegance, it's almost as though they are saying to me, "Be careful. I am very fragile and need respect." I am not kidding.
In a time where we easily discard so much, I think iit might be time to slow down and appreciate things- perhaps if we stopped for even a moment, we would open our eyes and appreciate everything around us. Amazing conversation and relationships can be built when just sharing a story about a particular item in the store. We remember these conversations, as that is where history is shared and brings community together.
This is a very personal venture for me- I hope you'll enjoy hearing more as time goes by.