Fashion and shopping, Melbourne style

___________________________

Unless otherwise indicated, all photographs and artworks on this website are copyright
of So Not A Princess and must not be reproduced without permission.


Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

___________________________

Powered by Squarespace

Entries in nautical (14)

Saturday
Sep212019

A Polka Dot Across the Bow

A couple of years or so ago on one of my more ruthless closet-culling rampages, this very cute 30s inspired nautical knit was one of the victims. It was culled exactly because it was cute. I had decided anything tow which you could apply, “Oh, that’s cute!” was going. Cute was out, sophistication was in. Anything with ruffles, frills, bows and the like were cast aside – even my adored polka dots were under suspicion! I’m not sure how long this rigorous rule lasted, but slowly hitherto despised frills and furbelows crept back into my closet when I wasn’t paying strict attention.

But how has this particular knit boomeranged back into my closet, you wonder? I actually gave it away to a friend, and forgot about it for a long time. One day I thought to myself, “Hmm, maybe I should have kept that … Never mind, at least it went to a friend,” I consoled myself.

Then recently, while working on culling my current winter wardrobe before I put it in storage, I mentioned this knit in conversation with the same friend, and said, “No pressure, but if you ever want to get rid of it, I’ll be happy to take it back.” To my surprise, she confessed that though she still liked the top, somehow it just didn’t work for her, and she would be happy to return it to me! That was last weekend, and I have not had a chance to take it out for a spin once again, but it does look nice paired with these wide-leg denim pants.

What, you may wonder again, is my culling criteria this year? Thirties style is my main mantra, although not everything I am keeping is strictly of this era or style: I’m leaving room for some other things I love. I am also being prudent this time and planning to store my culls for a little while, in case of change of heart!

Photo: September 2019

Tuesday
Mar262019

Fashion Follows Sailor Suit

Late last spring, just as the warmer weather was beginning in Melbourne, I amused myself (and my work colleagues) by adopting a nautical theme for a week. I have long loved stripes – a nautical staple – and the classic colour combination of blue, red, and white which I very often choose to wear, nautical theme or not.

Traditional sailor suits … influenced the design of the new bathing suits and other clothing …

Nautical fashion has for many decades been popular for the warmer seasons, with its obvious link to seaside activities. The fashion first took off in the mid nineteenth century, when ‘sportswear for the new woman’ first started being produced. Traditional sailor suits, ie, naval uniforms with flap collars, stripes and bellbottoms, influenced the design of the new bathing suits and other clothing designed for regattas, yachting, boating and seaside promenading.

Coco Chanel in the interwar periodFrench sailors; the marinière or tricot rayé (striped sweater) is a cotton long-armed shirt with horizontal blue and white stripes, characteristically worn by quartermasters and seamen in the French navy.Coco Chanel was another enormous influence after adopting the sailor-collared top (as opposed to Breton striped tees) worn by the local fishermen and sailors in the resort town of Deauville, where she opened her first store on the coast of France in 1913. At the same time, ‘Middy’ blouses, inspired by the uniform of midshipmen were worn by school children for gym activities; by the 1920s they were a huge women’s fashion trend.

1920s middy shirtFashion in the decades after followed suit, adopting the look not just for sportswear, but for daywear, and to the present day we are still wearing nautical influenced garments (although it still seems chiefly only for daytime). Every nautical motif once can think of has been deployed by fashion designers in both blatant and subtle iterations, from the triumvirate of the three most popular colours of blue, red and white; stripes and flag graphics; middy tops and sailor collars; neckties and pussy bows; every type of nautical hat – boaters, fisherman and sailor caps; high-waisted bellbottoms; to naval trim such as gold buttons and braid, and rope, anchor and sailboat motifs. 

It’s fun, it’s sporty and casual, easy and breezy, and denotes summertime and carefree holidays so very particularly – no wonder nautical fashion has remained popular!

Click through to view my gallery of all my nautical looks of the week, and keep scrolling for nautical looks throughout the decades.

Read more about nautical Fashion

Stories on nautical fashion by Vintage Dancer and Blue Velvet Vintage are worth a read – both include some great images from different eras.

Genealogy Lady has written a short history on the middy blouse.

Frenchly reveals that Coco Chanel did not make Breton stripes a thing!

For seaside fashion of the nineteenth century, visit Mimi Matthews.

Nautical fashions through the decades

Victorian era, c 1890sEdwardian wool bathing suit1920s swimsuit1930s nautical daywear fashions1940s dress (LIFE magazine)1950s1960s1970sMarch 1982February 1992, Naomi Campbell and Christy Turlington wearing Ralph Lauren on Vogue's coverLes Indes galantes collection, Lascar dress, Haute couture, spring/summer 2000, Jean-Paul GaultierZuhair Murad, RTW Spring 2016All images found on Pinterest unless otherwise indicated with direct links.

Wednesday
Oct052016

Sumptuous Stripes

James Galanos evening dress, 1955. From Fashion: The Whole Story, by Marnie Fogg (Thames & Hudson, 2013)If you knew how much I love stripes, particularly red and white ones, you would not be surprised to read that I nearly fainted with delight when I flipped a page in a book and saw this evening dress. It is from 1955, by American designer James Galanos (1924–).

This graceful gown is made from printed silk chiffon; note the nautical influence in the bathing suit style bodice and the insouciant knot in the overskirt. It is replicating a displaced middy collar. The term ‘middy’ derives from ‘midshipman’, a student at a naval academy, and is used to describe a sailor collar.

How I would love to swan around on the open sea in this!

~

From Fashion: The Whole Story, edited by Marnie Fogg (Thames & Hudson, 2013).

James Galanos evening dress, 1955. From Fashion: The Whole Story, by Marnie Fogg (Thames & Hudson, 2013)

Friday
Jun032016

Nouveauté

When I was shopping for vintage paper to use in my fine art work, I bought a French women’s fashion and lifestyle magazine called Nouveauté (Novelty). This issue was published on the eve of World War II, in August 1939.

I do find the cover rather odd however: the model’s attire is unappealingly reminiscent of juvenile folk costume – and what on earth is that strange spiky thing skewering her straw hat? I cannot hazard a guess!

Most of the content inside is uninteresting to me (and unintelligible since I only speak a few words of French), but there are a few wonderful fashion illustrations, which you can see below. What I’d really love is to get hold of some French Vogues from this era!

Monday
Feb292016

The Last Days of Summer

Today is the last day of summer!!! The quantity of exclamation marks should indicate my shock and horror, for this tragic ending has crept up on me. I had even been thinking about the fact that we actually have an extra day of summer as this is the 29th of February, but the reality had not quite dawned on me because the dear meteorologists (so beloved of Melbourne’s populace because of our fickle climate) have forecast several hot days this week. (They had better be right.)

So really, there are still a few unofficial days of summer out of which we can squeeze maximum enjoyment. But I thought it right to commemorate this sad occasion with a suitable outfit, and what better than one nautically-inspired? A blue and white striped linen tee is as summery as can be, don’t you think? The outfit has a little bit of 1940s flavour too, one of my favourite fashion eras.

Farewell dear summer, see you next year!

Photos: Today