March 31st, 2010

Cryssi from Get Craftee liked my DIYs and asked me to guest blog for her! Her amazing site just launched and will probably become your new craft destination! Check out Get Craftee to see how I made this T-shirt!

diylace_after


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Categories: Blog

March 30th, 2010

Lace!  Whenever I think of lace I remember that crazy outfit Britney Spears wore a few years ago and I’ve been kind of turned off of the fabric (yes it’s a weird association, lace=Britney, but that’s just how my crazy mind works). Lately however, after a few vintage lace tops I’ve come to love the fabric and decided to play around with it for my DIYs. Here is a t-shirt that I added lace strips to. I hope you like it!


lacediy_finalpic

Materials

  • Boring t-shirt
  • lace strips
  • sewing machine/hand-sewing skills

Instructions

  1. Cut off sleeves. This really depends on the placement of your lace inserts, if you want it below the sleeves you don’t have to take them off.
  2. Decide where to place your inserts and make t-shirt incisions… and measure unlike me (I had to go in and fix my crooked cuts).
  3. I wanted to sew the strips on top of the t-shirt so I placed them on top of the incisions to measure how long the strips should be
  4. Cut the strips and sew together at ends
  5. Attach the strips to the t-shirt. Place them on top of the shirt and sew straight on.

Gallery



I think everyone has funny associations with certain fabrics. What comes to mind when you think of lace?

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Categories: Blog, Do It Yourself

March 29th, 2010

Altering clothing is always a bit tricky. There’s a 50/50 chance your final result can end up looking like a five-year-old got scissor happy, or with some little planning and a little luck, end up with something you will actually wear, like my floral dress. When I found this dress/wrap/thing at Value Village I loved the body of the dress but the sleeves and shoulder pads made me look voluminous so they had to go. After wrestling with the idea of alteration and visualizing my ideal end result, I decided to go for it. Hopefully I could resurrect this weird/cool garment with a few minor changes.


I took off the sleeves with a stitch ripper at the seams, and used a zig-zag stitch on the edge to prevent the woven fabric from fraying. I then turned the edge of the armhole under and sewed a 1/4 seam allowance. This is the end result and I’m really happy with it! The weather just needs to cooperate so I can take this dress/wrap/thing out into daylight.

Before

blue-dress_original

After

blue-dress_1


Thanks Mom and Dad for the Value Village gift certificates! They’re the perfect birthday gift… even though I know you secretly think I’m weird for requesting them.


I would love to hear what you think or if you would’ve altered it differently. Let’s hear your thoughts!

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Categories: Blog, Do It Yourself, Toronto Vintage

March 24th, 2010

After two miserable days of rain the sun is out again so I have been inspired to start adding my spring and summer items to my store! Here is a sneak peek at some fun shorts that will be up tonight.


dscf3595


I have some cute jumpers that I am excited to post too so keep checking back!

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Categories: Blog

March 23rd, 2010

The Idea


A pocket actually – singular. I tested out several different titles for this post but gave up once I realized there’s no way to make it sound interesting… just weird. Don’t leave! I know simply adding a pocket sounds like a strange do-it-yourself project, but it’s a seriously easy way to jazz up a t-shirt! I have actually been thinking of this project a while (yes, I do some seriously pocket pondering) but haven’t found the right combo until now. I used some recycled leather from when I made shorts out of pants (always keep your scraps, especially leather!) and a plain over-sized black t-shirt that I modified.  I hope you like my latest project!


blacktee_leatherpocket_post2


blacktee_leatherpocket_post1

The Materials

  • Boring Tshirt: Thrift stores have great ones
  • A Pocket… or fabric you would like to make into a pocket

The How-To

  1. The first thing I did, which may not be necessary in all cases, is modify my t-shirt. I cut off the sleeves and cropped it to my desired length.
  2. Play around with pocket placement – this is trickier than you think!
  3. Sew the pocket straight on your t-shirt! When selecting your shirt and pocket/fabric think about how the fabrics will react with one another. The leather that I used is a bit heavy and if the t-shirt wasn’t a thicker, sturdy, fabric I would’ve torn a hole right through it.
  4. Voila!

Cost of DIY: $7

Gallery



Don’t have a sewing machine? Get creative! To attach pockets think of other fasteners you can use such as simple studs, cool buttons or a hundred safety pins. Hand sewing is also an option (and really relaxing) and there are tons of tutorials available.


Other ideas I had for pockets were using some made of lace or with floral patterns which I still may try. Do you have any fun and easy ways that you like to update a plain shirt?

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Categories: Blog, Do It Yourself

March 22nd, 2010

Every time I find an online vintage store, whether independent, on Etsy, or from Ebay I write it down (ie. copy and paste the link – who writes things down anymore? Although I do miss post-its…) I’ve accumulated so many I thought I would share some with you. Take a break to check out these amazing shops found at your fingertips.

Independent

Spanish Moss Vintage


Pure Awesomeness. Spanish Moss has much to offer from vintage to new items and their super cool blog. This classic Rolling Stones Tee is just a sample of their hot collection of vintage.


spanishmoss_rollingstonemickjag-2t

Rolling Stone Tee

Shop

Bleubird Vintage


Bleubird Vintage is fun for the whole family! This shop carries clothing and accessories for “Lady Bird”, “Mister Bird” and “Little Bird” like the adorable skates below!


bleubirdvintage_skates

Skates

Shop

Etsy

James Rowland


Best vintage shoes ever. That’s all you need to know.


jamesrowland_vtg80slaceups

Shoes 

Shop


Keep on Reading »

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Categories: Blog, featured

March 20th, 2010

I hate backpacks. I always (somehow) offend people when I say this but it’s how I feel. I think they are ugly, bulky and make people look like turtles. My bitterness for backpacks comes from being squished by the accessory on the subway. Why do you have so many things on you? Do you really need all those textbooks? This is very poor commuting etiquette.


The problem? I need one. I bike a lot when the weather permits and as lovely as it looks to wear a purse it’s not very practical and dangerous if it slips off. So when I found this lovely and weird vintage-y option I scooped it right up. If I’m going to wear this weird contraption it may as well have majestic animals on it.


Found at: Value Village, $5


backpack


backpack_closeup

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Categories: Blog, Toronto Vintage

March 19th, 2010

Hey guys! As usual I got hooked on a certain embellishment after using it, (ie. Fringe Collar) so I decided to add it to the shoulders of my t-shirt dress which I wore as a shirt in the pic below.


fringey


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Categories: Blog, Do It Yourself

March 16th, 2010

In our final year at Ryerson, Fashion Communication students have to do a self-directed capstone project. The subject is of your choosing and it can be absolutely anything and not necessarily fashion-related. In our program we focus on visual communication through design with courses like graphic design, typography, illustration, photography, etc so our projects are going to be very broad from paintings, events, brand books, websites, etc. My project relates to My Vintage Secret. As you know, I shop mostly in thrift stores and re-use a lot of clothing. I wanted my project to reflect this idea of clothing as valuable and recyclable in a time that promotes “fast fashion” so I constructed a clothing sculpture. Below, is a piece that I made with donations (thanks to everyone who donated!) which I manipulated into what I hope is seen as something beautiful. In the middle is a white space (white clothing) for my do-it-yourself stop motion videos to be projected onto. After spending four straight days finalizing the sculpture I am 98% done! I just handed in these photos to my prof to mark and the next step is installing it at the exhibition which starts April 7th and continues until the 10th. Without further ado, here is my ultimate DIY.


clothingwall_1


clothingwall_3


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Categories: Blog, Do It Yourself, featured

March 12th, 2010

I love vintage (surprise!) and when I tell others about My Vintage Secret it prompts them to share their amazing finds and stories (Yaay!). Since I enjoy hearing vintage love so much I thought you would too so I’ve decided to start posting mini vintage interviews! I have asked one of my favourite people, Breanna Hughes from one of my favourite blogs, Unbrelievable, to tell me some of her vintage secrets. Enjoy!

What draws you to vintage?

Honestly, I’m new to vintage shopping. I am a tech nerd, so I feel I lack the creative eye, but I started getting a bit more brave and trying new things and now I’m hooked! I like how you know you’ll walk into a party and not be wearing the same thing as someone else. Plus, it’s hard work, so you feel like you’ve earned your outfit.

When did you first shop in a vintage store? Do you remember your first purchase?

My first vintage shop was my moms closet. She was a huge hippie, and has amazing style so I love going through her closet and her old clothes. My favourite and first item was this bag, and I wear it ALL the time.

bag mom

What is your best Vintage find?

The aforementioned bag, or this amazing necklace my grandmother brought back from India and gave it to my mom when she was still just dating my dad. It has since been passed on to me, and it means even more since my grandmother has passed.

Everyone seems to be addicted to certain vintage accessories or garments? (For me it’s belts) What vintage items are you obsessed with?

At first it was purses, since I have a hard time finding clothes that fit me right (and I’m an awful sewer). Then it was shoes, but now it’s BELTS GALORE. I just bought 5 from 69 Vintage the other week.

Right now, what era does your style fit into? What are your favourite trends from this time?

My style fits into nothing. It’s so different day to day. Sometimes I wear expensive, more put together outfits. Sometimes I wear jeans and a tee. In the summer, it’s all about comfort and I love my little hippie style. I’m loving the 90s Party of Five style right now. I just bought a few pairs of brogues and a pair of oxfords. I’ve been finding a lot of vintage floral dresses that I SWEAR Neve Campbell wore.

Is there a vintage accessory or garment that you crave?

I have been on the hunt for the perfect fur shawl, and I’m just not happy with what I’ve found. (I’m sorry PETA!)

When you go vintage shopping do you have a vintage buddy or prefer shopping alone? What is your vintage shopping process?

Since I’m still just learning, I like to have a buddy with me who knows better than me and can tell me what looks bad or not. It’s so easy to walk away with the entire store when everything is so cheap. I always say “but it’s only $2.99″, but you need that conscience reminding you that you will never wear it. And that closet real estate is hard to come by.

My process is definitely shoes and accessories first. I feel that the good ones will get snapped up quickly, so I always am in a bigger rush to go for them.

If you could steal anyone’s style from the past whose would it be?

I think all fashion is pretty much stolen from the past, no? I love Katherine Hepburns menswear for woman style. I have to have a wardrobe that I can also wear to work, so I love wearing oversized collared shirts and baggier slacks.

Was there a TV show or celebrity/musician from your childhood who influenced your early style?

I think I speak for most girls of my generation when I say Drew Barrymore. I will never forget her daisy pictures and dark lips. I used to wear dark lipstick all the time. I also had a, yup, “Rachel” haircut.

Do you own anything that you want to pass down?

For my university graduation, I received a VERY beautiful pearl necklace from my grandfather. That will go down the family tree most definitely.

Do you have a favourite vintage store? If you shop online where do shop for vintage?

Etsy is great for vintage and it’s honestly where I do most of my shopping. Ebay is more risky I find. I love public butter, because I find they don’t jack up the prices too much. I also love bungalow, because they mix old and new, which is very much my style. San Francisco has AMAZING vintage shopping in the Mission. I brought most my items back from there.

What is your most memorable vintage item/story?

I bought a vintage dress with a bit of what I thought was shoulder padding. I washed it by hand, dried it, and put it on for the day. Throughout the day, I kept noticing a yellow powder on my dress and i had no idea where it was coming from. We went on a wild goose chase looking for where the yellow was coming from. Turns out there were two yellow chalk like tablets in my shoulders, it wasn’t padding at all. I think they might have been mothballs? Gross.

Thanks Bre!

Do you know someone else that has great vintage stories and would like to be featured? Email me at kaitlin@myvintagesecret.com

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Categories: Blog, featured