Monday, March 24, 2014

Outfit: That '70s Thrift

seventies seventies2seventies3 seventies4

Last Friday I went on an epic thrifting outing with a friend, and came up with this layered, easy on-and-off outfit for the occasion. I always try to wear full-coverage leggings and a camisole while thrifting - for the times when there aren't any dressing rooms and you try on clothes willy-nilly in the aisles - so even though I looked a little more dressed up than usual it was actually the perfect thrifting ensemble! I also found out that this vintage skirt from the '70s goes with practically everything - it paired nicely with tons of colors, from fawn to deep turquoise. It's my first vintage skirt that fits my smaller waist, and I have a feeling that I'm going to get a lot of wear out of it.

For some reason, I've been finding myself really drawn to '70s silhouettes and colors. Something about prairie blouses, earth tones, and collegiate plaids have been really resonating with me lately - they make me think of crisp spring afternoons in Oberlin and pictures of my mom when she was a long-haired teenager. I think it's interesting how vintage clothing as objects are reflective of the sociopolitical context of the time, and something about the '70s aesthetic feels more positive and progressive than other vintage eras. There's a softness to it, but also a strength; Victorian-inspired crochet blouses are beautiful and feminine, but they're also a marked upgrade in comfort from the fitted styles of earlier decades.

I've been thinking a lot about it lately, because although I absolutely love fashion from the late '40s to the early '60s, I can't quite separate the beauty and craftsmanship of those garments from their more problematic aspects. Much of the New Look aesthetic feels deeply tied to the walking back of women's rights in the post-war era - the clothing, while beautiful, created and enforced physical restrictions on female identity and mobility, with full, unwieldy skirts that made movement more difficult; girdles to make the body smaller and more shapely; and cute, lacy aprons to normalize and beautify domesticity. Although I still love my mid-century vintage garments, I find that I have to mix them with contemporary clothing or vintage from other eras to enjoy them fully.

These two garments from the '70s, on the other hand, have an easiness and confidence to them that I really enjoy, to the point that I don't mind being era-matchy while wearing them. Plus they complement our giant owl coffee mugs nicely, which is pretty great (and pretty '70s) too!

Cardigan: Cynthia Rowley cashmere
Blouse: '70s, from Trove Vintage in Ballard
Necklace: Love Nail Tree
Skirt: '70s, also from Trove
Socks: Kai Mei by Cookie A
Shoes: Fluevog Bellevue Laura Evans

No comments: