Thursday, 11 March 2010

Inspiration, and life moves in interesting ways

Sometimes life is funny. Or more interesting maybe...

On saturday, like I mentioned before, I was invited to a night of champagne, a chat and no dancing (that actually turned out to be "and some dancing", which was perfectly to my taste).

Here's my grandmother's fox in the company of three nice people, one of them my friend Ylva (sorry about the bad quality, once again I blame my iPhone, but then a few candle's and a computer-screen is not enough light for most cameras). You get the picture. A nice setting.

One of the other guests was an interesting person in many ways, the most interesting for me was probably that she makes her own historical costumes. She was dressed in a (I would guess) 1890's corset-top (not the correct name, but you get the idea) and skirt (that I had to stop myself from attacking and turning inside out to have a look at the construction) and I was SO inspired to have a go at making something similar for formal parties.

Then I found a fabulous 1950's Balenciaga dress through Vintage Pattern Librarian-blog (from his 1955 collection. Photo from Life Magazine, September 5, 1955 via Vintage Librarian), found out that I could become a fan of the Vintage Fashion Library at Facebook and that way get access to loads of picures of vintage fashion, so I did. A rare occasion for me to fan something on Facebook!

Which all led me to have a look the Vintage Pattern Library-patterns for sale and realised that it's probably 1880's - 1890's Victorian that I like the most of the more historical clothing. Walking dresses and such. See more here. Though I would probably remove all the decorations and work more with the drape of the fabric if I were to make one for myself, it's the shape I like, like these:

1899 Gown Trimmed with Persian Lamb, 1892 Dress with Figaro Jacket and Watteau Pleat, and 1891 Blue Gray Tailor Gown, all images borrowed from Ageless Patterns.

I like the fact that the skirts are quite narrow, I like the draped and pleated details and the corseted waists. Heck, I actually like wearing corsets, which might have to do with the fact that I spent the main part of my teens clad in plastic, in a medical corset to stop my back from becoming twisted and bent by scoliosis. I didn't enjoy it then (at ALL), but I have no problems wearing either traditional kimono-underwear (very similar to being corseted, but with tightly wrapped cloth) or victorian corsets now. All experiences have their advantages!

Anyway. Earlier on this spring I was utterly impressed and inspired by Dior's Couture autumn 2010-line. Oh, such a wonderful collection of colours in unexpected combinations, and the most wonderful draping. All with a definite flirt with historical clothes. See what I mean:

The ballgown top left is fantastic... and I just love love LOVE the unexpected clashes of bright complimentary colours. And the hair...

Earlier this spring I was (as you all probably know, and as many of you probably were too) shocked and sad to hear the news that Alexander McQueen had died, and I have been waiting to see his last (not latest, last for real, sad...) collectionm, I finally did yesterday and it's the most brilliant take on historical fashion fused with his "normal" futuristic style. I loved it too. And I think maybe I am meant to make a historical but modern dress for myself, it seems like all things lead up to it, don't you think?

One of my favourite facts of life: all things are connected and everything can turn out useful in the future, you just never know how.


  1. Great inspirations! I love Dior's combination of colors! And yes, yes, yes, make a historically-inspired modern dress...that would be great!

  2. I'm so happy to have fell onto this blog! I love vintage patterns and use to hobby a bit in the historical side. Truly Victorian - - makes some beautiful patterns, Ageless Patterns can be a bit fickle since they usually only come in the original size and you have to size them up. Amazing post! :D

  3. Oh those Alexander McQueen frocks are to DIE for! I love the inspiration here and I agree, those color clashings in the Dior line are simply marvelous. Makes me want to try something crazy. Love it!

  4. I love McQueen's take on historical fashion. Although they're not my style I love such vintage frocks, they're so elegant and feminine!

  5. Hey thank you for linking to Fashion Students Online! You've sent more than a handful our way and we really appreciate it :)

  6. Oooo how was skiing??? You lucky duck!

    I also love historical costumes. Have you seen the Forsyte Saga? It's a great BBC period drama. The clothes are amazing, not to mention the very dreamy Ioan Gruffudd! I'm not so sure about actually WEARING historical costumes now, though! I love them so much... but it would be SOOOOO much effort to do that whole "look".

    Alexander McQueen was soooo ridiculously talented it makes me sick. I'm extremely sad that his talent is lost. My favourite ever thing of his was that dress made out of red microscope slides that Bjork wore.

  7. OooOO! I have to look a little more closely to these pictures! Lovely collection you've gathered for us! I also just wanted to let you know that I've awarded you...


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