Monday, August 21, 2017

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Review: Gracy Q 1950s Style "Sophia" Dress

Gracy Q "Sophia" dress in yellow
Do you have a "best dress," a frock or outfit that is your nicest, most polished look and, most importantly, you feel epic in? My "best dress" is this little sunflower yellow number, the "Sophia" dress by Gracy Q.
On my pilgrimage to Revival Retro in London this past June, I anticipated I would buy a few dresses or blouses or something. Of course, I managed to fall in love with the most expensive dress in the shop, but also the one with the highest quality and best fit.

Being a seamstress myself, I usually go down the "I can sew that" route to talk myself out of clothing purchases, but such is the "build" of this "Sophia" dress that no, no indeed I do not think I would come out ahead if I were to try to make it myself.

The structured bodice flows into a full skirt - with pockets! - with a hanging rayon lining
The dress is a wonderful linen-look ramie textile in a mid-weight that drapes beautifully, fully lined in a very lightweight rayon (viscose). Yes, fully lined in the bodice with a hanging lining in the skirt, which removes the need to wear a slip underneath.

The bodice is structured and fits very well, particularly in the length of the waist, which is so commonly too short for me in RTW dresses. The neckline is particularly flattering, set quite wide in a 1950s style and tapering off into small cap sleeves. I feel like this dress combines business and pleasure with the structured lines of the bodice flowing into the full skirt, all of it done up in this beautiful soft yellow.

And my favorite-most-favoritest thing about this dress? It's incredibly versatile. The dress comes with a self-fabric tie belt, but as you can see it's very easy to use any color or design of belt. In my case I chose a navy blue belt to pair with the navy blue and ivory Lillian Mary Janes, but imagine red, green, sky blue....this yellow is a wonderful neutral. I do love versatility in dress.

Versatility in dress - today I chose Lillian Mary Janes in navy/ivory but just about any color or style will go with this dress.
Drawbacks - the fabric wrinkles very easily. As you can see in my photos, I'd been sitting before this photo shoot. It's a fact-of-linen (or near-linen), but I consider it a fair trade-off for the cooling properties of this fabric. The dress is also a hand-wash-and-hang or dry clean kind of girl. In pressing, I found it a little difficult to iron around the neckline trim.

All in all I love this dress. I'm impressed with the quality, fit, design, material, and versatility, and highly recommend Gracy Q as great value for money in flattering, beautiful garments.
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Monday, August 14, 2017

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Getting Ready for Gatsby

Hello Lovelies!

Abby here -- and let me tell you -- I have 1920s on the brain! Now that Costume College has ended, the Royal Vintage travel schedule has died down just a bit for August, and Lauren and I are starting our prep for Gatsby Summer Afternoon in Oakland on September 10th!

I've had a love for the 1920s for a bit of time now and while I own 3 original dresses, I wanted to make something new to wear to the picnic so I wouldn't have to worry about the garment. I've been known to "Hulk Out" and do some damage on my clothes, and I don't want to do that to an original...again...on accident. 😬

When I think of accessible 1920s and vintage dress patterns, one of the first pattern companies that come to mind is Decades of Style. I've been a fan of Janet & the company for a few years now and have a couple of their patterns already. Low and behold, while at Costume College I met a lovely lady who had on this great 1920s dress. When I asked her about the dress and she told me it was Decades of Style's 1925 Zig Zag pattern, I knew what I had to do.

This is the cover of Decades of Style's 1925 Zig Zag Dress Pattern - isn't it gorgeous?! I'm doing the sleeved variation since I'm not a fan of sleeveless anything. :) 

I was in love and it had to be mine.

I already had some sky blue cotton voile in my stash that would be perfect and I decided to add white voile bias for accenting all the lovely seam lines, and so after I got my hands on the pattern I set off to work.

I was very nervous adding the white detail to the skirt seams - since everything is thin and on the bias.

It's still currently in 2 large chunks (skirt and bodice), but I am making progress! I was (and still am) nervous about doing the dress justice. My machine sewing skills are extremely novice compared to my handsewing ability. So it's been a very good learning experience for me.

Not perfect, but I am very happy with how my white detailing is working.
I'm almost to the attach the skirt and the bodice together part, but I still need to finish pressing and prepping the skirt points (spray starch is your friend for this part). I'm also riding the struggle bus with the gathering at the shoulders for the bodice. I think my brain is just having a hard time making the mental calculations and steps to do what needs to be done.... (as in I'm over thinking it.)

So that's where my new 1920s dress is at the moment...a productive work in progress. I'm also trying to decide on which shoes I want to wear with them. Currently, I'm thinking Evelyn in Brown/Tan - what do you think?

Until the next update! <3 <3
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Wednesday, August 9, 2017


Review "The True Thirties Dress" in Blue Stripe by Emmy Designs Sweden

Hello Lovelies!

Abby here to talk to you about my new favorite dress in the (very large & needs to be cleaned out) wardrobe -

The True Thirties Dress by Emmy Designs of Sweden

Y'all. Seriously - Emmy created everything a girl could want in a dress with this lovely number. I mean, look at it!

Those lines though....
I love a good summer dress in a nice lightweight material, and The True Thirties dress is just that. It's made from a nice lightweight striped cotton (100%) that is cool and comfortable for the high summer heat (and humidity depending on where you're living...). I wore this dress for the first time when Lauren and I went to Louisville, Kentucky for Jane Austen Festival, and it was beyond comfortable when we were running around town and spending time outside. The lightness of the fabric and the swing of the skirt allowed for a lot of air circulation, and kept my body cool and comfortable in the high heat & humidity.

Look at that twirly skirt! wee!
My favorite pieces of clothing are those that have a healthy blend of classic, sophisticated design lines with a thoughtful & creative edge to the detailing. Emmy's True Thirties Dress does both of those things. The careful layout and design of the striped pattern on the bodice of the dress helps draw the eye to the narrowness of my waist, and packs such a visual punch that you will receive compliments where ever you go! (I kid you not - I keep a tally when I wear this dress because it amuses me so much!)

Please forgive my modern hair and 1780s earrings - I was doing a hell of a mish-mash that weekend!
The skirt also has just a little extra fullness at the sides and *drumroll* pockets! I mean, really, what girl doesn't love every dress she owns with pockets?! It's just not possible! Seriously - this dress is just the best, and it takes a lot of effort for me to not wear it every day of the week! (Lauren would probably start to worry about me...ha!)

Emmy Design's True Thirties Dress retails for 209 Euro (approx. $226) and is worth every penny. It's well made, well designed, and will get you compliments and looks everywhere you go. If simple blue & white isn't your favorite - The True Thirties Dress also comes in a Poly/Cotton Mint Green, Blue, and White Striped Seersucker version, too!

 <3 <3

Shameless Self-Promotion: I wore this dress with our new Claire Oxfords in White (Pre-Order until Aug 10th!), but I also love wearing this dress with Evelyn Oxfords in Tan/Brown and Marilyn Pumps in Red for a punch of sassy color!
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Thursday, August 3, 2017

It's GIVEAWAY TIME! Win $175 from Royal Vintage!

You guessed it! We're hosting a giveaway for a $175 gift certificate to!

There are so many many, many, ways to enter. Each entry has a different number of points, so you can do as many of these or as few as these as you like for a various number of entries.

If you have already pre-ordered any of the new New Yorker Collection shoes (Claire, Susie, Eve, or Rosie), go ahead and enter your order # for an automatic 5 entry points. If you are drawn as the winner, you have your choice of that sweet, sweet gift certificate OR we will happily refund your order!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Please feel free to use photos from our blog here, our Facebook page, or our website at Post away! Collect entry points! Woo!

The contest runs from August 3 - August 10. The winner will be drawn at random and announced August 11th. Have fun, folks!
"Claire" 1940s Oxfords in white - perfect nurse shoes!

Claire 1940s oxfords in black.

Rosie WWII Double Buckle Boots for Women

A good pair of classic saddle shoes will last you a lifetime.

Susie Saddle Shoes in blue/white.

Claire 1940s Oxfords in black leather.

Susie Saddle Shoes in three classic colors - black, blue, and brown

Claire 1940s Oxfords in brown with stacked heels

The beautiful new Eve sandals in rose gold metallic leather.

All our F/W 2017 New Yorkers!

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