Shopping For Vintage: Flapper Style

Evening dress, French made, 1925.
Image from The Met Museum
I love thrift shops. I used to shop them solely for books, but I've learnedly that you can find great bargains on vintage clothes too -- if you visit the right location. Vintage has always appealed to me. Be it clothes, furniture, radios, etc. I've always had a respect for the quality craftsmanship that went into so many things from days gone by. In a time when pretty much everything is disposable, and by the time it gets in our homes it is already surpassed by the next best thing, it's hard to find something lasting.

In recent years films like The Great Gatsby and the smash British TV series Downton Abbey, the vintage fashions of the Roaring Twenties have made a comeback. The sleek lines of Art Deco, Egyptian archaeological finds, and the influence of jazz could be seen in the wardrobes of the younger set and marked a turning point in women's style. It's no wonder these styles have regained their popularity. A few yards of material combined with sometimes thousands of glass beads and sequins and you had an outfit that was a true masterpiece! Have you seen the dresses in this post? The stunning beading rivals stained glass! 

Evening Dress, French made, 1926-1928
Image from The Met Museum.
These past few months have found me on a quest for a new vintage piece --the flapper dress. I'm planning a 20s themed bachelorette party for my best friend, and a beaded dress is a must have item. A search on eBay will get you thousands of results for contemporary takes on the flapper (some are truly awful!) as well as a few true vintage originals. It's amazing that 100 year old textiles are still around let alone wearable! However, I do believe that all flappers were indeed waifish! A 30" inch bust measurement is not uncommon on the vintage market. Yowzas! I don't think I was that tiny in the 4th grade. If you find something to accommodate a curvy girl, it's pretty rare, and unfortunately that usually means a bidding war. The struggle is real! Hopefully, by this August I'll find the perfect flapper dress. In the meantime, please share your favorite stores, online or off, where you shop vintage. If you have a favorite vintage find, please share a photo of it



Comments

  1. OMG yes. I can so relate. It's one of the reasons I don't wear much vintage. It's like the gals back then couldn't afford eating or something.
    Best of luck! That party sounds like it's going to be a smash!

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    1. Ha ha! I think you are correct, Juju! They must have spent all their money on their fabulous wardrobes.

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  2. Renee, I hope you find the perfect flapper dress. I rented one several years ago from a costume shop not too far away, but I'll bet you could find one on eBay or elsewhere online. I like to browse in vintage clothing stores although I don't usually buy very much--I just take a look around for ideas. :)

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    1. That's awesome! I called a costume shop (there aren't many left these days) and they unfortunately didn't have anything in my size. I have my eye on a dress on ebay, so keep your fingers crossed. 😉

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  3. It looks as if you're having some success and lots of fun with your flapper fashion (via IG), and are doing quite well creating something all your own. Glad something is working out for you, Renee! And your 20's party? It sounds cool. :)

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    1. Thank you so much, Rissi! I'm so excited for the party, it's unreal. 😀

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