Tag Archives: Vintage shopping

Shopping with The Vintage Traveler: Asheville, NC

After several days of looking at photos on the internet of people baking Christmas goodies, I decided I needed a break from the I’m-not-cooking-guilt.  What could be nicer than a day shopping in the antique and vintage emporiums of Asheville?

I call it shopping, but what I really do is 99% looking as my life is a textbook case of knowing that I have more stuff than I need already, and that  I’m out of space for more.  Still, looking is an education, and that requires no space at all.

I adored the postcard of the shipboard shuffleboarders.   And even though postcards take up little space, I resisted.

This Vera Neumann shirt from the early 1970s is such a great example of her work.  I’ve written before how she would paint the design and then her team would convert it into a garment.  The print was engineered so that the pieces of the garment were printed right onto the fabric.

This was a new one for me.  This is a close-up of a quilt made from pieces of felt, at least some of which were from pennants.  Big faux fur diamond shapes were appliqued over, and the whole thing was tied to join the front and back.

This is a shawl or stole, with a silk paisley print on one side, and a deep pile velvet on the other.  I took photos of it because it reminded me so much of one I found and bought not too long ago.

I’m still trying to figure out the target customer for this piece.

This piece started life as a tablecloth, but I think I like it better as an oversized top.  It looks like it was made in the late 1950s or early 60s, by the shape of the collar and neckline.

Why is the tablecloth-turned-top acceptable to me while this conversion of vintage skates to Christmas decoration is not?  Maybe it is because I’ve been looking for a nice pair of women’s 1950s skates, and here they are all covered with fake snow.  I do find skates a surprising lot considering I’m in the South, but they are usually cheap vinyl.  These are leather, and were well-made.

This was interesting, and a bit unexpected.  It’s a sketch by Grace Sprague, who was Edith Head’s assistant and main sketcher in the 1950s and 60s.

If I ever become a time traveler, the guy on the left will be my Edwardian boyfriend.

The poor woman driver runs deep in our consciousness.  The Victorians started it with their cartoons of the woman on her bicycle, and this Colliers cover perpetuated the myth.

These left me speechless.  Made by Wrangler, I’m quite sure they were made for men.  (I forgot to check the fly to see which way it was oriented.)

Aren’t these photos fantastic?  I wonder if they were actually used in an advertisement.

I see a lot of vintage tailoring displays and books, but this one is nice because it features a woman’s suit as well as a man’s.

And just to show that it’s not just about clothes, here are two little Scottie friends.

I did actually make two purchases.  One is a 1942 Make and Mend for Victory booklet by the Cotton Spool Company.  The other is a 2013 book on French designer Jean Patou.  It’s one of those huge, over-sized books that could have been published small for half the price, but I had to have it because of the wonderful photos of Patou’s sportswear.  Many of the photos came from the Patou archive, and are simply envy-inducing.  Bathing suits, tennis dresses, and ski wear – Patou did them all.

These wonders can be found at Bryant Antiques, Local, Screen Door, and Sweeten Creek Antiques, all in the Biltmore area of Asheville.

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Shopping with the Vintage Traveler: Hendersonville, NC

I recently had business in Hendersonville, but that suited me because there are lots of great vintage shops in that area.  I was on a tight schedule, and so I was only able to stop at two places, but there was a lot of great stuff to see and talk about.

One thing I can say for certain, in the first three decades of the twentieth century they really knew how to sell a book.  I’m talking about the fantastic covers.  Just look at Peg o’ My Heart above.  I’d have bought that book based on the little scruffy dog alone, not to mention Peg and her little bag.

Or what about Peacock Feathers, with that super Coles Phillips illustration?  I am always on the lookout for pictures of women wearing pants in the forest.  But it has been pretty much my experience that when it comes to mass market books of that era, you just can’t judge the book by its cover.  It leads to great disappointment.

Someone assembled a lovely scrapbook filled with illustrations like this farm girl.  Behind it you can see a wallpaper sample.  It was full of loveliness, but then when I turned to look at the cover I saw that the book was originally a 1910 tailoring book of wool fabric samples and drawings of the suggested suits.

My guess is that these are bicycling boots.  The heels are a bit high for hiking, though they could have served that purpose as well.

I don’t see a lot of these patio sets here in the East.  They were made to sell to tourists visiting the Southwest, but I have a feeling that the ones purchased didn’t get a lot of wear.   They border on costume, being based on the tightly pleated skirts of Navajo women.  They were even called squaw dresses during the time, though that term is not used much these days due to the idea that some consider the word to be offensive.

Here’s the label, with a great thunderbird motif.

Of course I had to photograph these Scottie twins.

Here’s a wooden handbag that was trying to cash in on the popularity of the Enid Collins bags.  This one is not signed in any way.  I love the 1960s version of nostalgia, with all its quaintness.  Make sure you note the doggie in the basket.

I do not need to take up another craft, but I’d almost learn to knit in order to have a pair of those beer socks.

There are quilt historians who claim that quilt makers invented modern art.  This quilt is an excellent argument in their favor.

Here’s proof that there are still bargains to be found in antique stores.  This silk teddy from the 1920s was unworn and perfect, and only twelve dollars.

I’m sorry about the quality of this photo, but look carefully to see how this velveteen handbag is shaped using folds.  And what about that clasp?  It almost looks like a pair of lips.

And finally, a 1940s photographer gets all artsy.

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Shopping with the Vintage Traveler – July, 2015

Summertime is hot in North Carolina, so I usually don’t leave the cooler mountains until September.  But I was enticed down to the flatlands by the Vintage Charlotte Summer Market. This market has been going on now for several years, but for this event they moved to a larger venue and there were more vendors.  And, I’m happy to report, some of the regular vendors had really upped their game.

I also went to a large antique mall in Charlotte, the Sleepy Poet, which is always good for a few hours browsing.  So some of these photos are from Vintage Charlotte and others are from the mall.

How great is this 1950s handbag?  The beads are glued on, and the eyeglasses are cut from felt.

Not only were these wonderful late 1940s shoes in perfect condition, the details put them a few steps above the average shoe.  I loved that gold trim with the brown suede.

That’s Andi of Raleigh Vintage on the left.  She and Isaac always have a terrific booth.

I’m crazy for suitcases and luggage of all types, but I spotted this little case and just could not figure it out.

Turns out it is a portable card file!

Sometimes an imitation can be even greater than the original as in the case of this Lilly Pulitzer wannabe.  It is so much of a copy that you can almost – but not quite – find the Lilly signature in the print.  Frankly, I think it is better than most Pulitzer prints I’ve seen.

I have a collection idea for all the necktie wearing readers: Rooster ties.  Rooster was owned by Max Raab, the man behind Villager. Rooster ties were unusual because of the square end and because they were cut on the straight of the fabric rather than the bias.  The novelty prints that Rooster used are fun and whimsical, as you can see in the four examples above.

Poppycock Vintage had some super little hats.

That favorite date is very late, but hopefully he’ll not be a cheap date and just buy her the chocolate marshmallow special.

Even the inside of that notebook is great.

There was a lot to look through at Vintage Charlotte, and if you are in the area it is well worth a drive to Charlotte.  They have the market several times a year, with the next one being in November, I think.  I didn’t buy a lot, but I did find an arm-load of 1950s fashion magazines.  That always equals a great day of shopping.

 

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Shopping with the Vintage Traveler

It’s been a while since I did a shopping post, but that’s mainly due to the fact that I’ve not been able to do a lot of shopping lately.  But I’ve finally managed to get out a bit, and so can show you the things I thought were interesting, but that I did not buy.  The items are from a variety of local venues.

The picture above is a painted pillow cover.  I called it “Two lovers adrift.”

This beautiful 1920s box originally held fragranced soaps.

Here’s a potato chip can for The New Era Scientifically Processed Potato Chips.  The chips are so healthy that they are good for athletes.

They were made from that healthy substance, hydrogenated vegetable shortening.

This adorable little nautical shirt was made by Catalina, and was for a child.  How about that Breton shirt the sailor duck is wearing!

I’d never seen the label before, but it is similar to the labels Catalina used in the later 1950s.

Here’s a hat devoted to my favorite golf hole.

Being in the East (but not in Nashville) , I don’t see a lot of western wear, but these women’s pants were really nice.

Proof that there are still bargains to be found, these 1920s shoes were priced at $6!  The condition is better than my photos look, as the cracks are on the surface and would be covered with polish.

Here’s a new one on me – a hankie greeting card.  And the inside:

A shipboard romance triangle in the making…

And finally, I spotted this rack of dresses in a local antique mall.  I’ve learned from experience not to get too excited about a rack of clothing because they often contain the seller’s closet rejects.  But in this case the rack was full of 1930s and 1940s frocks.  You just never know.

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What I Didn’t Buy – Late Edwardian Shoes

I’m pretty sure this needs very little explanation, but I have a bit to say nevertheless.  As you can see, the shoes were in very poor condition to start with, and I’d not have bought them anyway, but using those plastic zip ties on an old object is a crime against vintage!

To be fair, it was really the stand that was for sale with the shoes just thrown in, and I guess the seller just did not want them to get separated.  Still, it seems a very odd way to display items that are for sale.   The end result is that shoes that were already pretty much gone are now crunched up and completely gone.

Instead, what if there was a bit of polish to make them look their best, with nice tissue stuffing to give them shape?  Add some ribbon ties and they might even make a charming display.

I’m not really too upset about these poor old shoes, but it does concern me that a visitor to this shop might see this display and think it is a good idea.   Who knows what might be zip tied in the interest of convenience?

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Liberty Antiques Festival, Spring 2014

Last weekend was the one event that try to never miss, the spring Liberty Antiques Festival.   Twice a year some of the best sellers in the region gather for a big two day sale in the middle of a large field.  I can honestly say that I always find at least one exceptional item every show.

And now for the virtual shopping:

I used to collect vintage Halloween before the prices went sky-high-crazy.  These cards were tempting.

Store and salesman display boxes always get my attention.  I loved this one from Kickaway because I have a pair of black wool Kickaway bloomers.

This was a huge table of just summer handbags.

I thought this display for hair nets was interesting.  “For the Woman in Every Stage of Life”

That’s a great pair of 1920s or 30s outing boots.  The wooden thing behind them is a sweater block for knitters or for reblocking a sweater after washing.

This great dress was in the booth of Down South Vintage.  It is actually two pieces, with the skirt being attached to a bodice, and the beaded top is worn over it.  Note the curving waistband of the top. This was an exceptional garment, and I was not surprised to find an exceptional label:

Helena Barbieri was a very high-end evening and cocktail dress maker.

I’m afraid I’m starting to enjoy the self-portrait in the mirror thing.  Here I’m modeling a 1940s tilt hat that was all one big bloom.

Nice travel tag

This is a reminder to always look under the tables.  This was a lovely 1950s suit with matching shawl.

1966 Ar-Ex cosmetics color card.  I sure wish I’d saved all the ones the Avon lady used to drop off at my house.

I’m not a big fan of  Catherine Ogust for Penthouse Gallery dresses, but this print is great.  Seen at Design Archives in Greensboro.

For years Shadowline was a family-owned business in Morganton, NC.   Then the business sold and production stopped.  Now they have reopened with many of the products still being made in the USA.  Seen at Granddaddy’s Antique Mall in Burlington, NC.

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Vintage Shopping, Hendersonville, NC

I lived in Hendersonville for a short time in 1977, but I still drive the forty-five minutes it takes me just so I can take donations to my favorite thrift store.  It’s the Blue Ridge Humane Society, and they do a great job with their shop, which includes a vintage section with reasonable prices.

Last week the corner of my basement that holds the donation pile was full to over-flowing, so we packed up the car and off I went to drop  off the items.  I like going to Hendersonville because there are several nice thrifts, and enough antique stores to keep me busy for an afternoon.

I spotted the swing coat above in one of them, a nice piece, but it was the lining that really caught my attention.

It was a print giving the time in various cities around the world: Paris, Baghdad, New York, Cairo…

Who knew that pith helmets came in pink? No doubt, this must be the special girl’s edition.

This is a display piece from a 1920s soda fountain, and is about three feet long.  What really interested me was the aviatrix you can see through the window.

I loved this label which was in a man’s wool plaid jacket.

Have you seen this rick-rack trick?   The blue and the white were woven together, and then a crocheted edging was added.

This is false advertising.  I can attest to the fact that terriers do NOT do laundry.  Or at least mine does not.

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