Shopping with The Vintage Traveler – Summer 2018

If you’ve been reading The Vintage Traveler for a while you know that these “shopping” posts are actually looking and not buying posts. I’m not sure why some people seem to think that shopping actually means spending money.  I tend to look at shopping trips as research. One doesn’t have to buy in order to learn. And I’m always seeing something that is new to me.

There is one particular show I try to attend every year just because the vendors there often have things that I don’t have the opportunity to see every day. The Antiques Market at the Virginia Highlands Festival in Abingdon, Virginia,  has sellers who specialize in regional antiques. And I know that for some odd reason the rest of the country seems to believe that every cabin in the Appalachians still had looms in service until the 1980s, that is simply not the case. Hand weaving was pretty much a lost art in this area (as it was in the rest of the USA) until it was re-discovered in the 1930s and was revived as a way to make money off the tourists.

So, I really don’t think that over-shot coverlets like the one on the left are any more common here than in any other area along the east coast. I did find an early one several years ago at the Goodwill Outlet, bit I’m pretty sure that was a one-time deal.

The cover on the right looks like a piecework quilt, but it is actually a woven coverlet.

I also spotted this gem in Abingdon. It’s a sort of fancy patchwork sampler with the patches sewn to a background piece.

This basket was made entirely of stitches.

These are not in my line of collecting, but I love decorated stockings so much. Just the thought that so much work went into something that was not meant to be seen, that the beautiful hand embroidery was simply for the joy of having nice things, makes me happy.

This shawl was spotted in a really great antique mall (Bryant’s) in Otto, NC. It’s one of those places where I always find interesting things, like a spiderweb lace shawl.

Colonel Cotton Blossom looks a bit familiar, but all Southern “colonels” tend to resemble one another. At any rate, I love finding vestiges of the once-great cotton industry of the South.

This is proof that I do not buy all the Scottie things, thank you very much!

I am sorry to say that I have forgotten the name of the maker of this crossword dress. It was one of the big makers of casual dresses in the 60s, and isn’t it amazing?

I almost bought this 1930s tabletop tennis set, which was mint in the box and complete. And cheap. But I’m trying to stay focused.

Go-go boots for the pre-teen set. Vinyl, and certainly not meant to last for fifty plus years.

Coca-Cola advertising often has the best depictions of girls in sporty attire. I hope she has on tights under that skirt and those socks.

I paid a visit to Kate DiNatale Vintage in Greenville, SC. She always has the best stuff, including these Halston sandals.

Yesterday I decided at the last minute to go to a “vintage” market in Asheville. The show was put on by a group that does this type of thing all over the country. There were quite a few vendors, many of whom were selling crafts or new stuff that has an “old” look to it. I think we are to the point in the evolution of the word “vintage” that it no longer means “aged”. Looking old is good enough, as evidenced by the masses of people who were there snapping up the faux-tiques.

I have nothing at all against new stuff that looks old. I realize that some people would rather have a reproduction printed tea towel or tablecloth than to use an old one from a stranger’s linen closet. My problem is in the use of the word “vintage”, which to me implies that the stuff being offered is old.

In the end I felt like Alice who tumbled into a rabbit hole and ended up in a beige and black Pinterest-land. Beige and black pennant banners, beige and black pillows with cutesy sayings, beige and black painted furniture.

I will say that in spite of my irritation at the situation, I managed to find a few things for myself from the few vendors of authentic old stuff, including an adorable Scottie key ring and a 1940s letter cardigan with the athlete’s name embroidered on the inside. So, at least it wasn’t an afternoon wasted.

 

 

12 Comments

Filed under Shopping

12 responses to “Shopping with The Vintage Traveler – Summer 2018

  1. Amanda

    How I would love to tag along with you some time.

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  2. jacq staubs

    Absolutely! Shopping is research. Especially for you. When wardrobe / image consulting I spent hours daily looking for customers – not just clothes but jewelry all sorts of personal items. I love the spider web scarf – is it a piano shawl or an oversized shawl? Hate to admit it – I remember the Halston shoes. By the by – my feet paid the price for not wearing sneakers- I always had to be dressed UGH! Loved my country weekend excursions.

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  3. I’m glad you posted this here; IG doesn’t quite do the job conveying the whole search and what it meant. There’s so little vintage anything available in person in Seattle anymore – it’s all online, or someone’s very special collection of repurposed vintage clothing. I live vicariously through you. Thank you.

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  4. Love the Girl Scout hankie! And I agree with you about faux vintage.

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  5. First, I am in love with soooo many items here! The Girl Scouts hankie, the embroidered stockings (like you I marvel at the time and work), I would love to own that spider web shawl, but would be terrified to wear it, and OH MY GOD that crossword dress!!!! That is absolutely marvelous!

    Like you, I am frustrated by the flippancy of the usage of the word “vintage.” It now describes as aesthetic or style. If you use the term “vintage” to describe something that is new, the term “style” needs to be added to the end of it, at least then it implies the item is new and just “in the style of vintage.” I also loathe arriving at an “antique mall” only to see things from the 80s and 90s.

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