black on black on black

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I found this dress a few weeks ago at my favorite brick-and-mortar vintage store. For $25. Yes, $25. I keep waiting to find something egregiously wrong with it, and that moment never seems to come. What better to team it with than these kickass $1 heels + sparkly fascinator from Kristina?

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Dress: vintage, via brick-and-mortar store

Fascinator & shoes: from Kristina

Everything else: thrifted

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Have a bit of the short story I just started writing:

‘Sister Alisdair,’ said the novice, ‘her tray’s untouched again.’

From her perch above the annuals, elder Sister surveyed younger. ‘Completely untouched? Not a drop of soup spilled?’

‘Not one.’

‘Such a waste. But I’m not one to judge what calls her.’

They both fell silent, picturing that slender child growing slenderer behind the veils of her cloister, beatitude showing plain and clean on her whittling face. For weeks it had been the convent’s not-so-secret, the weight on each pair of shoulders after matins and before dusk. The Sisters had come slowly out of the Lenten fast, relearning fleshly duties as each shrunken stomach allowed. As they felt their bodies creak back to earth, they turned, briefly but crucially, inward. It was several days before they realized that one of their number had not rejoined them.

It had been seven weeks and counting since the Savior’s second birth, since the ivy had unfurled between brick and brick and the nights grown steadily warmer, and Katarina the novice still had not begun to eat.

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mother said straight ahead

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I borrowed my mom’s vintage cape and got to channel my favorite musical. Despite my lofty aspirations, I am far more Little Red than the Witch. It’s always weird when your mental image of yourself fails to align with reality. In my head I’m slinky and sinister and throaty-voiced; in real life I’m stocky and squeaky. I’ll always be more Merryweather than Maleficent.

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Dress: vintage, via brick-and-mortar store

Cape: Mom’s

Everything else: thrifted

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haunt for the holidays

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Can we take a moment and collectively appreciate Kristina of Eccentric Owl here? I’d known since my birthday (back in May) that I had a package from her on the way, but I had no idea it would be this package. I finally received it on Monday (the day before my half birthday), and…lord oh lord was it worth the wait.

Besides making (yes, making) the skirt in this post, she thrifted me a pair of retro heels, a spangled fascinator, and a cherry-print blouse. I feel positively spoiled. I haven’t been wearing many separates lately, but this skirt stirred my desire for a kitschy skirt-and-sweater combo, and lo! – I’ve been wearing the outfit in this post for two days straight now. Holiday mashups are my new favorite thing.

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Skirt: from Kristina

Everything else: thrifted

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This look was unintentionally super similar to last year’s Thanksgiving outfit. I’d wager it’s an improvement – I have both a much better camera and much longer hair.

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bustlin’

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You have no idea how long I’ve been wanting to share this. Seriously, you cannot possibly know. But it’s finally upon us: my first article for Bustle was published today!

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Dress: vintage, via brick-and-mortar store

Hat: vintage, thrifted

Everything else: thrifted

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I am so excited. I got to write about an issue I hardly ever see addressed in the vintage community – and get paid to boot. The gist:

This is what every pinup enthusiast who “wishes women still dressed like ladies” fails to understand: Those “back in the day” women were never considered “ladies.” They were, in the eyes of much of the public, plain old whores. You cannot then simultaneously revere them and revile their present-day incarnations.

I had to get super fancy in my favorite vintage dress to honor the occasion.

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brace the sails to starboard

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I love open water. Love. I know r/thalassophobia is supposed to be nightmare fuel, but no – I browse it to bolster my dreams. The waves don’t scare me: the sea is a beast, but it’s a beast tamed by physicists and mapmakers. It knows the rules.

On Saturday we took a day trip to Plattsburgh, NY, just a ferry ride away, and neither of us wanted to disembark. A nautical affect makes Josh look even more like Captain Hook than he already does.

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Dress: vintage, via brick-and-mortar store

Hat: vintage, thrifted

Everything else: thrifted

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I’m fancy lately, even more so than usual. My hair is finally long enough for pinned hats and (pseudo) victory rolls. I always shift this way as the cold comes in: my sartorial desires become more “old-money matron” and less kooky!cute. But this year it feels like more. It feels, in a way it’s never felt before, like changing for good. I’ve been wanting to wear black lately. Black.

Not that I’m hurrying to pull a 180. But I do think my look might be evolving in some ways. I wore a cutesy dress last week and felt like I was wearing a costume. I think I’m fumbling, in my way, toward elegance.

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wine & dine

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Last week, Jenna from Fairmont Hotels contacted me about seeing my best take on a “wine & dine me” outfit. Her branch, in San Jose, CA, is hosting a dinner-and-drinks event this month, and she said she’d like to get a few bloggers’ takes on elegance for inspiration.

Now, I should mention that 1) I have never been to California, let alone San Jose, 2) I am not a West Coast sort of person, and 3) I have never stayed in a Fairmont hotel. But I am all for vintage elegance, and this seemed like a fun prompt, so I bit. Why not?

Fairmont’s San Jose branch reminded me a little of the castle from The Little Mermaid, so I decided to play up the Ariel thing. My hair’s getting long enough for comparisons now. And I finally got to make use of this vintage dress I thrifted for $4 over the summer.

Picdump incoming: I really, really liked these shots.

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Dress, hat, & pearls: vintage, thrifted

Shoes: won in a contest!

Everything else: thrifted

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beluga, sevruga, come winds of the caspian sea

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With her pervasive purpleness and queenly affect, Holly doesn’t need a lot of prep to become Ursula.

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I’ve been wondering for a while, though: where is the line between an artistically altered image – a blending of photography with other elements of storytelling – and an image that’s straight-up overshopped? I know badly ‘shopped pictures when I see them, but it’s a “frog in boiling water” thing: when I’m editing my own photos, I can’t tell when I’m crossing the line. Does anyone else struggle with this?

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factory girl

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I live in what was once one of Vermont’s foremost mill towns. Most of the mills have crumbled or been converted to offices and hipster apartments, but some of them still belch steam. What better backdrop for this thoroughly 1940s look?

I found this dress at a theater-department costume sale, the same one where I got my Toni Todd dress.

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Dress: vintage, via costume sale

Hat: vintage, thrifted

Everything else: thrifted

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indian summer & channeling kristina

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We’re having a random warm snap (it hit 70 degrees today. In Vermont. In November.), so I took the opportunity to break in this Dirty Birdies Vintage dress. It was my “theater season is over” present to myself. Except, for some reason, it was WAY too big in the bodice. I swear I read the measurements! So I took it in…and ended up overshooting it, so now the buttons gape just a little too much. I’ll even it out, but still. It’s a pain.

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This is a very Kristina outfit, I feel. The pattern mixing, the woodland feel, the head scarf.

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Dress: vintage, via Dirty Birdies Vintage

Cape: from a friend

Everything else: thrifted

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