Fashion and shopping, Melbourne style


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Entries in shopping (191)


Clear Gilt

On Monday, after I completed some errands in the neighbourhood, I happened to pass a thrift store on my way home. Naturally I had to go in.

I saw on a shelf what looked like a giant bottle of Chanel No. 5 and was exceedingly amused to discover that it was a hard plastic handbag! It came complete with a faux gold label and chain strap, and aptly, the stopper was the clasp. There’s no visible branding, so likely it was a whimsical but inexpensive purchase by its original owner.

It is a guilty purchase for me too, I must admit, for while I have always had a sneaking liking for transparent handbags, they are not very practical, and lose their aesthetic appeal when filled with an evening’s accoutrements – unless they happen to be very, very beautiful. That’s probably why it was in the thrift store in the first place.

Aptly, I have photographed ‘Chanel’ bag with bottles of French perfume, and it does look very pretty, oui?

Photo: Yesterday


Pennies for Tears

I don’t go looking for vintage jewellery (I’m usually hunting hats) – but vintage jewellery usually somehow manages to find me. The reason I’m not shopping for jewellery is because I have so much already (hmm – no idea how that state of affairs might have come about!) but I seem to have a positive knack of discovering something irresistible.

That was the case with these vintage 60s copper teardrop earrings. They are so shiny and rosy and swingy. I also like to imagine that someone illegally melted down some 1-and-2-cent pieces to make them.

For when one enters an op shop or thrift store, one never knows what treasure one might unearth, such as these beaten copper tears that might have cost someone a few cents to make. Those coins don’t exist anymore, so that makes these earrings priceless! (They cost me three bucks.)

Photo: May 2018



Quite a few years ago I admired this exact necklace on a friend at work. I liked the simplicity of its design and the pleasing mix of textures: earthy wood grain contrasting with polished black.

I did ask her where she had found it, and it was somewhere unexpected like Target, or some inexpensive jewellery boutique. Then years later, I spotted it in an op shop (thrift store)! I pounced on it instantly and purchased it. Although it is inexpensive wood and plastic, it has a substantial weight to it that makes it feel higher quality.

That was delightfully unexpected – it always pays to keep one’s beady eyes peeled! That’s the beauty of op-shops, you never know what treasure you will unearth, or if it might even be something you missed out on purchasing in a retail store.

Incidentally, it’s taken me another two years to actually publish this image – because I never liked how my hair looked – long, and too fluffy. And now it’s even more startling to me since I’ve been wearing my hair short for such a long time. I feel most myself wearing some kind of short bob, as now.

Photo: August 2016


Love Takes flight

Recently I bought this original 1940s black velour hat from Jane’s Vintage on Etsy after falling in love at first sight with it. Wings! With silver lurex scrollwork! Irresistible. I really liked a second hat from the same seller as well, also 1940s, so dithered over them for a while.

One day when I returned to admire them, the second hat – a kind of inflated, tall Cossack number made of faux curly lamb had sold, so that made me make a decision in a hurry! I was very glad the wings had not flown, and bought it immediately.

In the second picture you can see in profile the hat looks like a tricorne – that triangular historical hat you might associate with pirates and buccaneers. I like to think though that it was inspired by the heroic aviators of WWII.

Fashion notes: jumper by Trent Nathan, jeans by Hudson.

Pictures: Today


That Thrilling Thrifting Feeling

I loved this grey silk blouse with a multitude of complicated pleating – but alas, it was a size or two too small.Who knows that heart-wrenching thrifting feeling when you find some fabulous item only to discover it doesn’t fit? Or it’s ruined somehow beyond repair? Or alternatively, that thrill when you stumble across some incredible, mind-boggling, once-in-a-lifetime find? I have been op-shopping for decades now, and I have hit both highs and lows.

Just look: HEART-SHAPED BUTTONS. (Sob.)A recent high was finding an antique Victorian pink wool cloak with cornelli embroidery and silk tasselled fringing, while a low was a gorgeous 50s dress and bolero set with a novelty London print (featuring the Buckingham Palace guardsmen in their bearskin hats) that was not only a little small for me but horribly ripped from some stupid person who had tried to squeeze themselves into it and torn the bodice asunder (not even on the seam). I could have wept! I was so overwrought in fact I forgot to photograph its wonderful print.

Here are some of my hits and misses of the past.

Periwinkle blue leather flats hardly worn? I won't say no!In fact, I also did not say no to the NEVER-worn black patent T-bar heels – they still had the original price sticker in them.I also took home this flocked cotton tee that charmed me in the store.I like matryoshka dolls, but I think I did not like the enormous size of this pendant (one time when I rejected exaggerated proportions!).So many shiny shoes! Remarkably I held my magpie tendencies in check and none came home with me.