Aug 22, 2014

While running this blog I've gotten quite a few emails and comments about how much you love the way I mix vintage and modern pieces so easily. But the one common denominator following that compliment usually is "Sigh, I wish I could pull that off." Oi. You guys. You can! Victory curls and tulle under full skirts don't have to be part of the equation; you can start off with just dipping your toe into the water. It's all about trying to use that vintage piece in a modern way- treat it like something you just found at a boutique and make it fit your style. Like some of you have mentioned fearing, you don't have to feel costume-y while wearing it! So for today's "What to Wear to a..." I'm going to share my thought process behind the vintage styling, so you can achieve the same eclectic mix while you go to your park parties and Tuesday bar nights! Let me know if you have any questions along the way. 

The key to making a vintage skirt work is to pair it with a modern, non-fussy top. Sure, this polka dot, high waisted number has some serious 50's potential. I immediately see red lips and sweetheart halter tops. But if you want to go in the opposite, more urban direction, try pairing it with a structured sweatshirt top to give it a laid back feel. Toss in slinky hoop necklace and some minimalist, geometric earrings and you end up being more city slicker than pin-up girl. Now toss on your fringe bag and go scope out the closest patio table by the lakefront that you can. And make sure to order some sort of cocktail with cucumbers in it- to better compliment that cool, late summer breeze.

  1. Little Miss Vintage 3 high waist polka dot skirt
  2. H&M sweatshirt top
  3. Southwest Vintage lace up ankle boots
  4. Urban Outfitters slinky gold choker necklace (only $18!)
  5. Urban Outfitters wire earring
  6. H&M fringe shoulder bag 

Oh vintage hats, the one thing that seems to quake most want-to-be-vintage-lovers to the bone. They look so pretty and lady-like, but they'll surely attract some curious stares. The key to pulling one off is to juxtapose it with a clean, minimal outfit. Let the hat do all the talking- if you add in other competing details then you'll just have a loud shouting match on your hands. In this look I took a structured stewardess hat and paired it with a clean denim shirt dress and a structured, square cross-body bag. The clean, simple lines let the pillowbox hat blend in with the outfit rather than stick out like a soar thumb. Now slip on some southwestern boots, order a round of craft beers, and go kick some butt at trivia night!

  1. Topshop motto denim t-shirt dress
  2. Hey Viv! Vintage stewardess pillow-box hat (only $24!)
  3. Southwest Vintage western ankle boots
  4. H&M clutch bag (only $17!)


You know all those $100+ bohemian dresses you've been dying over at Free People? Where do you think they got their patchwork-and-flowers-in-her-hair inspiration from? I'm going to go out on a limb and guess it's the 70's. Yea, it's the 70's. So why not save yourself a hundred bucks and buy yourself an actual authentic vintage dress. The styling with this caftan follows the Free People logic: take something patchworky and busy and pair it with sleek modern boots, a structured clean-lined bag, and a modern wide brimmed hat. The accessories act as anchoring agents, where they keep your outfit looking more 2014 rather than something straight out of Woodstock. Now pack yourself a picnic with some brie and sparkling grapefruit water, make your best friend bring the blankets, and go listen to the blues festival at the park!

  1. Poetry for Jane vintage 70s caftan (only $26!)
  2. JC Penny Call it Spring Forirada cross-body bag
  3. Target Mossimo Dawn ankle boot (only $28!)
  4. H&M wool hat
  5. H&M poncho


Long, baggy floral dresses are probably one of my favorite vintage pieces because they're so easy to make grungy. You can either look like a third grade teacher out of the 90's or, if done right, a red lipstick wearing, plaid loving, twenty-something. The formula for this one is easy: grab sleek motorcycle boots, pair them with thigh highs to add some playful youthfulness to the look, and pop a beanie over messy beach waves. Effortless, easy, and oh so modern. And just right for that midnight viewing of Little Shop of Horrors. Make sure to grab a cup of coffee along the way ;)

  1. Height of Vintage daisy midi dress (only $22!)
  2. Anthropolgie opaque thigh high socks
  3. Sole Society mini backpack
  4. Target Mossimo boots (only $28!)
  5. Topshop cable pom beanie
  6. Sarara Vintage 60s southwestern ring


Dramatic evening skirts are making a comeback in a big way, and the key to pull of these glamorous satin numbers during the daytime is to anchor them down in casual pieces. Go for a structured top you'd likely pair with some summer shorts, or maybe one of those sweatshirt numbers with jewel detailings. The overly casual tops will be a fun contrast against the dramatic sweep of the skirt, and they'll take away from that evening feel. Then take it a step further and slip on some clunky flatforms (they're the polar opposites of slinky stilettos) and throw in a panama hat and classic sunnies for good measure. You'll be the most stylish one drinking root-beer floats at the soda shoppe counter. Reward yourself with a banana split for good measure ;)

  1. She & Her Vintage formal maxi skirt
  2. Topshop moto stripe denim tee (only $30!)
  3. Topshop wolf flatform sandals
  4. H&M narrow belt (only $9!)
  5. J Crew panama hat
  6. J Crew Selima Sun sunglasses


  1. all of these looks!!! i want bits and pieces from all of them.


  2. You really are the best at mixing vintage and modern! I think partly you just have such a unique view on things -- most of which I would never think to mix together -- and it's such a cool style. I LOVE the polka dot skirt one. It's the best.

  3. I am loving those lace up ankle boots soooo much. I need to find some in my size!

  4. Loving all the outfits you created especially Midnight Movie one!

    Katrina Sophia

  5. I love all of these! Especially the lakefront cafe and soda shop!

  6. So cute how you mix the vintage with modern pieces! Sad that I remember when a sunflower dress was in style.. for the first time... :) Thanks for all the inspiration!

  7. This is so perfect - I'm not afraid to be a little on the costume-y side when I'm in full vintage mode, but so many of my friends/family say the same thing: "I wish I could pull something like that off", thinking that wearing vintage is all-or-nothing.
    This is such a great beginners' guide, I can't wait to share it with people!

    <3 dani

  8. I love love love the first one! (:

  9. The movie outfit is definitely my favorite. I love that daisy dress so much! I can we CAN mix like you, we just don't have the same eye and talent as you do :).

  10. love love love!! I love how you mixed modern and vintage, definitely will give this a try next time I go thrifting and find some cool pieces!

    xo, Kina

  11. Some of it is just so you ya know, though. ;) like midi skirts just don't flatter me at all but you rock em like its UHM 1984 or something. :);)

    I loooove that first outfit. Also I have been so dead with commenting and don't want to seem to dead to you so HI FRIENDLY REMINDER THAT I LOVE YOU LADY

  12. You mix modern + vintage the same way you mix patterns = perfectly!

  13. Gah, definitely checking out that GORGEOUS 70's dress right this minute! Love this edition! :)

  14. I really love this. While I lean more towards the costume-y look, I can totally understand that other people want to make their vintage pieces look more modern. You definitely do a great job showcasing that! The polka dot skirt is my favorite.

  15. LOVE that H&M Fringe Bag and the J.Crew panama hat! Love your style <3 Erica & Kelsey


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