we appreciate some art, page seven; discover a world of black and white, page nine, and frolic in a world of vintage, page seventeen.
Dear You, I’ve read a lot of your letters recently; telling me how two months is too long for you to wait for you Oh Comely fix, so I’ve decided to something very special, just for you! This is a little in sight of what the Oh Comely team have been getting up too in between issues, and a little teaser of what’s to come. So, we’ve been getting caught up in a world of vintage, listening to a bit of Ben Howard, and deciding if the colour black is still the people favourite. We’ve had a chin wag with our stylist from the shoot, listened to some Radiohead and of course, my personal favourite, we’ve been reading all of your lovely letters and postcards. I hope this will keep you going until January; I look forward to seeing you soon,, Your editor.
some people who helped to make this issue
Alice Syron is a nineteen year old media and advertising student living in Newcastle upon Tyne. She was the stylist for this issues â€˜black & whiteâ€™ shoot, mismatching different styles for a quirky yet elegant look.
This is Rosie March, a nineteen year old Fashion Communication student originally from Liverpool. She wrote this issues article, telling us about her experiences growing up in a world of vintage fashion.
Fern Montgomery is a student hoping to work in public relations in the future. She was our makeup artist on this issues shoot, creating a minimalist smoky eyed look that our model loved!
art work that made us smile
Weâ€™ve been looking at all sorts of art blogs for this issue, and have picked out some our favourites: mywordsflylikebirds.blogspot. com birdsinhats.blogspot.com galletly. blogspot.com
t shirt: disney / skirt: miss selfridge / jewellery: models own
BLACK&WHITE photographer: rosie march stylist: alice syron assistant: fern montgomery model: victoria gardiner
ABOVE leotard: h&m / fur hat: vintage LEFT scarf: new look
leather jacket: new look / skirt: miss selfridge
leather jacket: new look / harem trousers: topshop
fur coat: vintage
turban: ebay / dress: new look
‘I t i s e a s i l y o v e r l o o k e d that what we now call vintage was once b r a n d n e w …’ TONY VISCONI
By Rosie March
A fashion student talks about growing up in a world of vintage, and her changes of opinion and style. The fascination with second hand or vintage fashions has been a recent one. It wasn’t too long ago that there was a certain stigma attached to wearing an outfit previously worn by someone else, and charity shops were often associated with those who were frugal, not those in search of next seasons fashion inspirations. These days are long gone. I remember growing up, and my mother would traipse around charity shops for hours on end, looking for a second hand gem or vintage bargain. She would assure me that the clothes were washed and clean, but I just couldn’t understand why someone would want to wear something that had already been worn by somebody else, when there were so many brand new ones available. I just didn’t appreciate the wearable art of vintage. It wasn’t covered as a bit a whole
until I was a teenager, and I developed my unique sense of style, that I disthe magical world of fashions been and gone. I had always seen them old hat, not young and cool like me, but that had all changed. There was century of fashion for me to discover, and I couldn’t wait to get started.
I prided myself on being an alternative dresser, so finding beautiful clothes that no one else had gave me an amazing buzz. When asked where I had purchased an item, I had no shame in responding with ‘Oxfam’ or ‘Cancer Research’. The stigma attached to second hand clothing had well and truly gone. My love for old clothes had begun, and is continuing to grow today.
‘Vintage Clothing: A generic term for new or second hand garments originating from a previous era.’ The word vintage has a certain beauty and elegance about it; it was this reason that every charity shop purchase I’d make, I’d declare was ‘vintage’. Much to the annoyance of my mother, who many a time would tell me, ‘no it’s not, it’s just a bit tatty!’ Most of my buys were probably from the same decade, but that doesn’t sound as glamorous as having a vintage handbag, which conjures up all sorts of images of the likes of Audrey Hepburn draped in finery walking along the red carpet with it. At the age of fifteen, I began to rifle through my mothers and grandmothers wardrobes, to see what hidden gems they had been hiding. I’d mix their beautiful old clothes with my own high street garments to create eccentric outfits involving leotards, sequins and scarves. I believed I had an eye for fashion, and could see potential in an item that nobody else could. To complete every outfit, I’d throw on dozens of gold chains around my neck and my mother’s 1980’s leather jacket. I was a New Romantic, 15 years too late. Many people look back at their teenage years and say, ‘what was I thinking?!’, but I look back and simply wish I still have the confidence to dress like that now. Over the years, I’ve heard many stories about people whilst browsing their local charity shop and stumble across a beautiful YSL dress for £10, or a pair of Chanel shoes for 1% of the price they were originally bought for. I live for the day this happens to me. Although my chances of this happening are getting slimmer and slimmer, with the popularity of vintage clothing being at an all-time high, clothes like these are snapped up in an instant and sold at vintage fairs around the country. These fairs are very popular, both with general public and design houses. High end designers have always used garments from the past as inspiration for their collections, and vintage fairs are a perfect opportunity for them to scour the stalls for something eye catching that could be reinvented for a new collection. There is a certain thrill when rifling through the rails at these fairs, that you might find a piece that could inspire designers next season.
At the age of 18 I took a trip to New York City, for New York Fashion Week, it was while I was there that my love for vintage was fully confirmed. Out of all of the fabulous shops on Fifth Avenue, and all the amazing sights to be seen, I found myself drawn to Soho, exploring the quirky thrift stores and vintage shops. They were completely different to anything I had ever seen before, a magical emporium of garments from previous eras. From beautiful 40’s ball gowns, to 80’s fringed leather jackets. Each item was just as eye catching and interesting as the next. I decided to treat myself to one item as a souvenir of my trip, and spent hours searching for the perfect piece. I decided upon an embroidered handbag, which I call my ‘Mary Poppins Bag’, decorated with flowers and had a gold chain, it was beautiful, and was the best $60 I could have spent. The clothes in these stores were some of the most wonderful creations I had ever seen, a perfect place for inspiration for any fashion fanatic. With my love for all things old and classic, I appreciate current designer’s modern twists on vintage designs. I remember once reading about how Christian Dior creates the perfect collection; one third new, one third adaptations from familiar styles and one third proven classics. The outcome of this is something incredible and iconic. I’m a self-confessed hoarder; I can’t bear to get rid of any garment or accessory that I may, in years to come, want to wear again. This is not surprising considering the amount of times I have purchased an item, brought it home, for my mother to say, ‘Oh, I used to have one of those’, and when I ask about its whereabouts now, she would break the disappointing news to me that she got rid of it years ago. I took this as a lesson as to never throw anything iconic away, and I haven’t. Charity shops mainly sell items donated by members of the public, so therefore wealthy areas are a hot spot for high quality designer items. This is where vintage fanatics come to bag a bargain. My best friend has a second home in a small town in Yorkshire, and growing up; we would often take a trip out of the city to one of the best places I know for charity shop shopping. I was fascinated by the history of the pieces we found, and intrigued as to how anyone in their right mind could throw them away. I love the fact that each and every second hand item has a story behind it. Each glamorous dress has attended a glamorous occasion, every pair of vintage Louboutins have made somebody feel fabulous. Beautiful clothes bring people joy and there is something particularly special about clothes that have made more than just you smile.
The stories behind the clothes all differ. Some garments have spent the majority of their lives in a warehouse, and have never even been worn. These are the pieces that are most valuable, especially if they still have tags, but are very hard to come by. These garments would be sold in auction for rather generous prices, rather than in the vintage stores where I like to shop. They are very desirable, although I do prefer clothes with a little more history than just having been sat in a box for years on end. In recent years, more and more celebrities have been seen gracing the red carpet wearing vintage or vintage inspired gowns, Julia Roberts and RenĂŠe Zellweger to name but a few. The increased attention for vintage clothing in the media has increased desirability and got people talking. Celebrities are very influential, so a trend amongst celebs soon becomes a trend amongst everyone else. I get a lot of fashion inspiration from traipsing the internet looking through photographs of the likes of the Olsen twins and Alexa Chung, who are known for their beautiful vintage style. . Designers have always turned to garments from the past for inspiration for garments for the future. Fashions come and go, so by scouring vintage fairs and picking out eye catching and interesting pieces, you could find yourself being well ahead of your time in the fashion stakes by wearing something 50â€™s years old!
Made for a Northumbria University Fashion Communication module. A mock version of an Oh Comely magazine. All words and images by Rosie Olivi...