Friday, September 30, 2011


I've wanted to start a new section on our RARE vintage blog for awhile: my #FFs - but instead of meaning Follow Friday, it will mean my Friday Favorites.  There is a lot that I will be posting on our new column but I thought I would start with the fabulous and fabulously talented Stella Lee who is one of @RareVintageNYC 's favorite stylists.

Stella Lee recently styled a story for Fashion Gone Rogue and the wardrobe came exclusively from yours truly: RARE vintage.  As gorgeous as our Schleppi mannequin is, it is a real treat to see our vintage on a real live model styled brilliantly by Stella Lee and photographed by Angelo d'Agostino.

Thank you Stella!!

#FF @RareVintageNYC:

Marc Bohan for Christian Dior

Pierre Cardin Couture suit with leather detail

Galanos crepe and lace black gown

John Galliano polka dotted pajama Le Smoking ensemble

Marc Jacobs for Perry Ellis beaded ensemble

Oscar de la Renta silk dress

You can see the entire story here.  More #FF RareVintageNYC next Friday!!


1970s Yves Saint Laurent rive gauche

Sometimes it is hard not to play favorites with the dresses that come into RARE vintage - after all, I don't want to offend any of my babies, I love all my children!  But then a dress comes in and I can't help it: we have to immediately take whatever happen to be on our Schleppi mannequin and replace it with my new favorite.  

This rust colored silk jersey dress from Yves Saint Laurent rive gauche with gold leather straps and a back that plunges down to there is my new favorite...

It is slightly Grecian in feeling but all 1970s Parisian.  Think Betty Catroux, Loulou de la Falaise, Marina Schiano... you know, all of the slinky IT girls that were drawn to Saint Laurent like a group of glittering butterflies to YSL's incredible flame.

Red hot and smoking!  1970s YSL rive gauche dress with gold straps.  Size 2/4 (and that boys and girls is the only reason this baby is not hanging in my closet right now!)


Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Capes are for L♡VERS

Capes are for lovers because cape lovers love a good snuggle.  That is a lot of love in that last sentence!  Capes are cozy and they are also cool.  Check out a few fabulous street style photos before seeing our two incredible capes:

Our first cape is very Phoebe Philo for Celine but in fact is a Madame Gres cape.  Madame Gres adored volume but it is a volume that is light and when worn there is the surprise of the gorgeous chevron interior.

Madame Gres chevron print cape in a dark raspberry

Our second cape is a delightful Pauline Trigere with a wonderful peek of houndstooth check.  I love that both of these capes have a somewhat simple exterior and then a whimsical interior.  It's like icing on the cape!

Pauline Trigere houndstooth print cape.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Kawaii! Tiny Judith Leiber Bags

Kawaii!! is the word for cute in Japan.  So, when I saw these two teeny weeny Judith Leiber black lizard bags, I said, "Kon Ni chi Wa, Kawaii!" 

Of course, they are not Hello Kitty cute but they are elegant cute.  Sort of sweet.  Like a tiny little puppy that makes you go, awww...

Gorgeous in shiny black lizard.  Our first bag has gold hardware and a gold and lizard handle.  There are three interior pockets, a wittle, oops, I mean little mirror and a little lizard coin purse.  You can keep a little lipstick, a little phone and a little money, what more could you want?!

Judith Leiber black lizard bag with gold hardware

Our second little Leiber is also black lizard but this one has two little finely beaded handles.  

Also has three interior pockets: it may be little but you can be mighty organized in that interior!

Judith Leiber black lizard bag with beaded handles.

Super Kawaii no?!


Monday, September 26, 2011

Are You Stacking?

If you are not stacking you should be.  I am stacking today.  I've stacked a Cartier Love bracelet, a red cord bracelet with some sort of little gold blob (I have no idea what it is suppose to be) and my favorite vintage Rolex California watch.  Some people stack in the extreme and I wonder if it may be a good way to tone your arms my wearing 50 pounds of assorted bracelets and cuffs.  *Note to self: pile it on tomorrow and do lots of up and down arm movements.  

My stack:

You may not necessairly want to stack anything with this beautiful 1982 Ted Muehling cuff of oxidized bronze shaped like an Art Deco hoof that curves around the wrist.  Ted Muehling is very inspired by organic shapes derived from nature in his jewlery designs but this has a slightly punk feeling to it.  Sort of elegant punk - which may be the first time those two words have ever been put together!  Now the only question is, to stack or not too stack??

1982 Ted Muehling oxidized bronze art deco rounded hoof cuff


Saturday, September 24, 2011

OMG! This is What I Looked Like in 1987!

I have been home in my pajamas all day doing closet cleaning and I have found a stash of really great Prada shoes that I had completely forgotten about (woo hoo!), embroidery I had done from a class I had taken at FIT and these photos from 1985 which are too funny.  Okay, so let me set the scene:  The hair is huge!  We're talkin' Julia Roberts in Mystic Pizza huge.  

Julia Roberts circa 'huge hair' 1988

The dress is a tiny little thing I had bought at some amazing little store in the East Village long gone and that years later, I let a drag queen friend of mine borrow and I don't think she ever gave it back!  

Little doggie as a prop and you can see my undies and oh Lord is that cellulite?!

Hmmm... what is going on here with the trunk?!

and my sister, the glamorous gloved one!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Valentino Busy as a Bee

When Valentino retired in 2008, a certain kind of beauty also retired.  It was a beauty that loved beautiful things, beautiful places and beautiful people.  But it was a beauty that also understood the true meaning of being beautiful; it has nothing to do with perfect features, beauty is an attitude.

The bee is one of the oldest emblems of the sovereigns of France.  And of the last emperor, Valentino.

A Lesage embroidered cream wool jacket by Valentino Couture from the 1970s with decorative top stitching.

The armholes are high and the sleeves are narrow to the arm.

Beautiful bee embroidered in silk floss and a golden metal thread.  Tiny black beaded eyes.

Why don't you wear it with...

Chloe wide-legged courduroy pants for a Seventies meets 2011 look.

Chloe pants available on Net-a-Porter


Va Va Vroom! Prada Spring 2012

Ladies start your engines and get that credit card revved up for the Spring 2012 Prada Collection!  It has to be one of the best shows that I have seen in awhile.  It is wearable, whimsical, gorgeous and basically I want just about everything.  Literally.  Everything!  And luckily for me, my husband being Italian, is obsessed with cars and car racing so the "donna e motori" (women and cars) theme of Miuccia Prada's sweet and wonderful Spring Collection should be just the thing he will love seeing me in.  And he will be seeing lots of it!  Just take a look:

Hello Gorgeous!  (The clothes silly, not the girl:)

"I tried to do a sweet collection.  That word is such a taboo.  Why do women have to be so aggressive?" said Miuccia Prada of the collection.  And I agree.  I do not know if it is because of shows like 'The Real Housewives...' but there are some scary aggressive women out there.  Women can be powerful and sweet. My Mamma taught me to be kind to everyone.  

Looks like a pair of earrings that you might find in your grandmothers jewelry box from the Fifties only the roses are pea green.

The skirt!  The shoes!  Ka-ching!

How long do I have to wait before buying this dress?  Oh, Agony!

Mamma mia!  Che fantastico!!

And guipure lace

I have written before that because I own a vintage store, I always shop with a thought on whether a new piece is a good investment, will it be timeless, etc...  this collection is a keeper.

Photos from

The Mughal: Kenneth Jay Lane

Pauline de Rothschild dedicated her book, The Irrational Journey, to her friend Diana Vreeland.  The dedication said, "You held two keys, discipline and wisdom.  They gave you a vision.  Of the real, of the unreal, of the unreality waiting somewhere in the wings to be made real."

Vogue in the 1960s under Diana Vreeland was a place of dreams: real and imagined.  That is the fun of fashion; you can slip on a pale beige mink, wear beige knickers by Donald Brooks, brocaded sashes by Calderon and a Dynel hairpiece and suddenly you are on Diana Vreeland's high speed train from Kyoto to Tokyo looking like the beautiful Versuhka with a cup of green tea.

This early Kenneth Jay Lane Mughal style bracelet from the 1960s in an apricot enamel with green stones could have been sprung from the imagination of Diana Vreeland.  

Why don't you wear it with...

an apricot colored caftan from Oscar de la Renta from the 1990s (or something similar as this piece has already sold.)


Thursday, September 22, 2011

Best of New York Fashion Week

Fashion has a very short gestation period.  We are in the midst of the Spring 2012 shows and before we know it, Resort will be here, then pre-Fall and then Fall 2013 and then before we are dreaming of what will we be wearing next summer, for the next Fall, designers will be dreaming up the Resort collection.  Whew!  I get exhausted just thinking about it!  

Here are my favorite shows from the New York fashion week:

The Row.  The ladies know how to turn out a good collection of very wearable clothing.  

I always feel like I have 'no middle'.  I love glamour and romance for the evening (an evening out that is, evening at home is the most glamorous, the comfiest pajama I can find) and for everyday I love a good soft shirt usually from The Row or Proenza Schouler or a vintage blouse from YSL.  You can never be too rich, too thin or have too many YSL blouses!  But then there are days when you have, oh, I don't know, a lunch honoring Valentino - just another day in vintage store owner land:) and you need something more 'in the middle'.   You know something that will make Mr. Valentino proud.  I may love my ever growing collection of Proenza tees but I just somehow suspect, Mr Valentino would not.  I am a firm believer in wearing whatever you want, whenever you want but I am also a firm believer in dressing appropriately to the occassion.  Rachel Roy recently caused a ruckus when she wore her pajamas out for a screening in New York.  

Now I LOVE my pajamas but no way am I going out in them.  I am no Julian Schanbel.  But I will wear a YSL pajama inspired ensemble or a Dolce & Gabbana pajama inspired outfit out.  But actual pajamas?  No.  Only Julian can pull off that look.  I'm sorry Rachel.  Besides I am feeling very confused by the heels, the semi brief case clutch.  It's almost as if she thought she was 

A. Going to a party (the strappy high heeled sandals)
B. Going to bed (the pajamas)
C. Going to a meeting at a corporate office (the brief case clutch)
or D. All of the above
I think it is safe to say, Rachel went for D.

But getting back to The Row.  The collection was beautiful, ethereal, wearable and practical.  Gorgeous practical.  Mary-Kate said that they "wanted everything to float and breathe."

The Row.  Spring/Summer 2012

Love all this light layering.

OMG!  Pajamas!!

Coming soon on a celebrity...

Sisters are doin' it for themselves!  Rodarte Spring/Summer 2012

If Hitchcock was hiring a costume designer for a new film, he would hire the Mulleavy sisters and use their Spring 2012 Rodarte collection.  The Mulleavys were inspired by the colors of the 1959 Disney film, Sleeping Beauty and the paintings of Vincent Van Gogh.  

The evil Maleficent from Sleeping Beauty

Vincent van Gogh's Starry Night 

And the Mulleavys Starry Night

Rodarte's Hitchcock heroines

And my other favorite show was Prabal Gurung.  If the stylish, chic and goofy Carole Lombard was alive, I think she would choose to wear Prabal Gurung.  And since I inspire to be as stylish, chic and goofy as Carole Lombard, I will be ordering from the Spring collection.  There is a very definite 1930s  mad cap heiress feeling to the dresses with their fluttering sheer panels.  

Prabal Gurung.  Spring/Summer 2012

Prabal Gurung was inspired by the artist Araki's Sensual Flowers series.  Nobuyoshi Araki is most well known for his photographs of women bound by kinbaku (Japanese rope-tying art) and his lush photographs of flowers.

One of Araki's sensual flowers.

One of Prabal's sensual flower dresses

And this is the dress that I must have.  And if you read our RARE vintage blog, you now how determined I can be:)  So beautiful don't you think?  


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