Author Archives: Lindy Shopper

World Lindy Hop Day Tee

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

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Behind the Beat Apparel has done us all a service and created a commemorative tee shirt for May 26 as World Lindy Hop Day! There’s no year on the shirt, so feel free to wear it throughout the world, in perpetuity, to celebrate Lindy Hop and the legacy and birthday of Frankie Manning.

Mesh Oxfords for Summer

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

Warm weather is here and I’m always on the lookout for men’s mesh inset oxfords because I believe they are immensely practical and neat. Here’s a few pairs, ranging from reasonably priced to a bit of a hit on your wallet:

This is definitely my favorite of the bunch, size  10, BF Goodrich rubber heels.

This is definitely my favorite of the bunch, size 10, BF Goodrich rubber heels.

Reasonably priced, 9 1/2 C

Reasonably priced, 9 1/2 C

This size 8 pair was on Boardwalk Empire.

This size 8 pair was on Boardwalk Empire.

The modern version - Allen Edmonds "Strawfut" in size 9.

The modern version – Allen Edmonds “Strawfut” in size 9.

Vote for the Next Charlie Stone Dance Shoe!

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

The fairly recently launched Charlie Stone Shoes is already working on their next swing dance shoe, utilizing the first shoe design’s low/hidden wedge, and you get to vote on what shoe they make next!  There are four adorable designs to choose from and all you have to do is go to the Charlie Stone Shoes Facebook page and tell them which shoe is your favorite: A, B, C, or D.  I love it when designers incorporate fan feedback – thanks, Charlie Stone!

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Re-mix News: Sale and New Shoes!

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

Playtime!

Playtime!

In a triple whammy, I see that Re-mix Vintage Shoes has put a number of danceable shoes on sale AND has introduced two new colors for existing styles – Antique Brass Balboa and Gold Metallic Janet – AND has introduced a new style of shoe, the Playtime, a canvas 1940’s wedge in navy/white and red/white. Love love love!

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Steel Magnolias Print at Trashy Diva

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

The gorgeous Lena Sarong Dress in Steel Magnolias print.

The gorgeous Lena Sarong Dress in Steel Magnolias print.

It’s been a few months since I gushed about Trashy Diva and as long as they keep making superior rayon dresses I will continue to gush. The latest print, Steel Magnolias, embraces Trashy Diva’s southern roots as a nod to the film via large magnolia blooms on a silvery steel backdrop. The result is elegant, cheerful, and graceful, as the neutral of steel balances the ostentatious blooms. The print incorporates a bit of pink, purple, and what looks to be lime/chartreuse, giving this the pops of color it needs to have depth.

With this print comes a new style of dress, a classic 1940’s pinafore dress, which is a style I love and own several vintage dresses in this style. In addition to an array of classic TD styles, this collection has a lot of separates, including an intriguing pair of lounge pants. I’ll take one of each, please. :)

I love a pinafore dress!

I love a pinafore dress!

TD 40's Blouse, one of the great separates from this collection.

TD 40’s Blouse, one of the great separates from this collection.

Hot Topic Presents Vintage-Inspired Marvel Collection

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

Streamlined, vintage design, from Stark Industries.

Streamlined vintage design from Stark Industries.

Hot Topic is taking pre-orders now for a Marvel By Her Universe collection of vintage-inspired dresses inspired by some of your favorite Marvel characters. Some of the garments are more literal, like Black Widow’s belted jacket (pair with pencil skirt, anyone?) and others are more inspired by 1940’s-1960’s design and the characters, like the 1940’s-inspired Stark Industries bomber jacket (for all you Rosies out there) and the 1950’s-inspired halter dresses for Loki and Captain America. I would love to see some of these at dances or performances because

– Dancers already have super powers – muggles agree that people who dance are magical creatures.

– Team performance, either chorus girl or co-ed, with any of these, would get extra points for presentation and the cost of these garments is not so prohibitive.

– Solving the question of what to wear to a Halloween dance that would be fun without having to don a wig or appendages.

I could do without the wimpy tulle “crinolines” poking out from the skirts of the halter dresses, but I think these garments are a good jumping off point for some custom modifications. The Loki dress COULD be MORE Loki with some embellishments and I’m definitely going to replace “Tony” with my name on the bomber jacket. Lindy Shopper can have her own narrative. ;)

Enjoy and keep saving the world through Lindy Hop!

I was always a sucker for a sailor dress - rock the hammer.

I was always a sucker for a sailor dress – rock the hammer applique.

Behind the Beat – Lindy Hop Tees, Tanks, and Hoodies

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

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At ILHC 2014 I reported of a mysterious banner for Behind the Beat – Clothes that Match Your Rhythm, with a website coming soon. That day soon has come, and Behind the Beat is a fully operational website, with swing dance themed tees, hoodies, and tanks for purchase. The graphic designs play with phrases and images that are familiar to swing dancers – a stylized Ellington in a top hat, “The Rhythm is Jumpin’” (you finish the phrase), a nice visual on A Train, and more. Perhaps the most useful tee for the month of May would be their I *heart* Frankie tee shirt, featuring a classic Frankie aerial silhouette in the heart – I’d say this tee is definitely a conversation-starter, for sharing the love of Lindy Hop. Check out the rest of the collection at the Behind the Beat website!

Jitterbuggin’ Derby Day Blouse

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

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‘Tis the season for horse racing and large hats and the Lindy Hop community will always be tied to “the races” by way of Whitey’s Lindy Hoppers’ appearance in the Marx Brothers’ film. What better way to celebrate than by picking up a very limited edition horse race print blouse, courtesy of Jitterbuggin’? The stylized horses and be-hatted spectators on this reproduction blouse are just perfect for a dance or your local Derby festivities. And when I say limited run, I mean she only made three of them and one of them has already sold! (Kim, please make more! <3)

A close-up of the print.

Laura Bakker’s Catalogue of Fashion for Men and Women

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

Felt appliques make this blouse awesome!

Felt appliques make this blouse awesome!

I happened upon Laura Bakker’s Catalogue of Fashion website in one of those lists – THOSE lists, that purport to have links to all the repro goodness, but ultimately and eventually the links stop working as websites go out of business (which is why I won’t maintain one of THOSE lists on this website). HOWEVER, every now and again you find a true gem, still in business, with fantastic garments.

With a degree from the Art School of Maastricht in her pocket and a love of movie costumes from the 1930’s through the early 1950’s, Laura got to work making her line of unique and individualized fashions. From the website: “Everything is made by only me, the patterns, the clothes and all the applications. Every item is made only once, my little personal war against all the big productions ;-) I wish to offer all the ladies & gentlemen something special.”

The menswear offerings include great shirt and trouser basics that look comfortable for dancing. The women’s clothing is all about the details and you can see on each piece how it is unique and how Laura has left her own mark on each piece, with buttons, trim, contrasting fabrics, inset panels, and even hand-painted details.

Here are some of my favorites from the website:

These 1950's cut high waisted trousers look great for spring and summer.

These 1950’s cut high waisted trousers look great for spring and summer.

"In the Navy" playsuit YESSSSSSSSS

“In the Navy” playsuit YESSSSSSSSS

Blue rayon short sleeved shirt, check out that collar!

Blue rayon short sleeved shirt, check out that collar!

Margie dress - I love the placement of the trim, to draw the eye up toward the neckline and also emphasizing the waist, moving toward the hips.

Margie dress – I love the placement of the trim, to draw the eye up toward the neckline and also emphasizing the waist, moving toward the hips.

High waisted pants in gray-green.

High waisted pants in gray-green.

Green AND a keyhole neckline!

Green AND a keyhole neckline!

My grandmother had a dress with this hip detail in the late 1940's - love!

My grandmother had a dress with this hip detail in the late 1940’s – love!

Hand painted panther blouse, for lovers of cats great and small ;)

Hand painted panther blouse, for lovers of cats great and small ;)

1940's sports jacket

1940’s sports jacket

Monsivais Caps

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

1920's reproduction one piece crown cap

1920’s reproduction one piece crown cap

I haven’t done anything for the gents in a while, so here we go – I have found myself shopping for menswear recently, as I assemble my golf outfit for the Jazz Age Lawn Party. I was on my high school’s golf team, so this is not entirely for show, and definitely about the love for the game and the clothes. That said, I’d more likely be dancing than swinging a club at the lawn party in August, so I’ll need something that can take the sweat and reduce the heat. I asked David Lochner, my favorite sartorialist and go-to for menswear advice, where I should acquire the perfect 1920’s-style golf cap and his immediate and only response was “Monsivais.”

Damian Monsivais, in addition to crafting superb caps, is a collector of clothing and accessories from 1900 through the 1930’s. From the website, a proper introduction: “Caps where all the rage during the early years but are so difficult to find in good sizes. All men of trades owned one, from farmers to the Prince of Wales. Mostly made of wool and lined with silk. Today’s modern caps are nothing like they made in the 1920s and 1930s so I took it upon myself to make some reproductions for myself and now I offer them here to the public whom share the same liking and want a period correct look.”

Right now Monsivais Caps is transitioning from an Etsy page to an independent website, so to get a bigger picture of the business, go look at both, then order from the independent website. The fabric selections are even broader than shown, so if you are looking for something specific, as I was looking for summer-weight fabrics in specific colors, simply start a conversation. You can also supply your own fabric and have it made into a fabulous cap.

Upon consultation with Mr. Monsivais and a mailing of fabric samples, we are going with a nice cream linen with a brown check in a “simple one piece crown” that I am very excited to acquire. I will do a follow-up post once I’ve worn the cap with the golf ensemble.

In the interim, I invite you to take a gander and these gorgeous cap offerings – oh, the seaming!

The Redline - 8/4 crown cap in denim

The Redline – 8/4 crown cap in denim

The Cooper - 1918 Reproduction 2 piece crown Cap with 2 top box pleats and short belt

The Cooper – 1918 Reproduction 2 piece crown Cap with 2 top box pleats and short belt

The Chamois - 1919 Reproduction 2 piece crown with 3 top pencil seams JUST GORGEOUS!

The Chamois – 1919 Reproduction 2 piece crown with 3 top pencil seams JUST GORGEOUS!

The Tradesman - 1910s- 20s Reproduction 2 piece crown Cap with center inverted box pleat and short belt

The Tradesman – 1910s- 20s Reproduction 2 piece crown Cap with center inverted box pleat and short belt

The Aviate - 1920's reproduction one piece 8 plaited cap

The Aviate – 1920’s reproduction one piece 8 plaited cap

Loco Lindo – 20% Off for Lindy Shopper Readers!

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

Co-marketing LINDYSHOPPER

California-based vintage-inspired clothing company Loco Lindo has graciously offered Lindy Shopper readers a 20% discount on all regular priced items! Use the code LINDYSHOPPER2015 through December 31, 2015 to get this discount! :D

For my newer readers, I blogged about Loco Lindo when they were a vendor at All Balboa Weekend in 2011 – since then designer Linda Marrone has been busy expanding her line of clothing to even more fun, wearable, washable garments, some which are ready to go swing era style and others that skirt the line between modern and vintage, that could go either way depending on how you accessorized the ensemble. Comfort and prints are key here, as well, with shapes that are flattering and easy to wear and prints that make you smile.

Linda and two of her Loco Lindo designs - adorable!

Linda and two of her Loco Lindo designs – adorable!

Did I mention that most of Loco Lindo’s garments are 100% rayon viscose crepe? Did I mention that I wear the dress I bought from them at ABW 5 years ago year-round? Did I mention that after I wear it I just throw it in the wash and don’t have to have it dry cleaned? Linda isn’t messing around – some of her priorities as a designer are flattering silhouettes, comfort, and making vintage styles wearable for every day to take you to the variety of occasions that you would encounter in your day-to-day lives.

I also like that the website spells out why their dresses are special:
• Covered Buttons •
• Soft Elastic Waistbands •
• Ruching Treatments •
• Special Shell Buttons •
• 100% Pre-Washed Soft Rayon Crepe •

Now that we’ve covered the basics of Loco Lindo, go shop with that coupon code! New summer styles and prints will be coming out soon, so be sure to check back in.

I'm having another GET IN MY CLOSET moment with this dress - I love fruit prints!

I’m having another GET IN MY CLOSET moment with this dress – I love fruit prints!

20th Century Foxy

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

My favorite decade for fashion.

My favorite decade for fashion.

I don’t know why it took me so long to write about 20th Century Foxy, because I’ve been eyeballing things on their website for over a year and I’m firmly convinced that I just need to buy a plane ticket and go shopping in the UK with all the great vintage repro I’m seeing. With a pun-tastic name, this line of womenswear takes its inspiration from the early to mid-20th century, citing the years 1925 through 1964 as inspiration. With an obvious passion for vintage style, 20th Century Foxy also has the goal of selling “top quality clothing produced locally and in ethical circumstances and using local or regional businesses where possible.” Further, they also want to appeal to a wide range of shapes and sizes – “there is the perfect outfit for every woman of every shape and that it will make her feel like a goddess.” YES THERE IS.

In addition to solid reproduction and vintage-inspired garments, they offer style guides for the 1930’s, 40’s, and 50’s, with a bit of history, etiquette, key looks (with photos from the past paired with looks from the website), and a shopping list.

Here’s what I’d love to add to my closet from 20th Century Foxy:

GET IN MY CLOSET

GET IN MY CLOSET

Rayon blouse in carnelian

Rayon blouse in carnelian

To go with everything!

To go with everything!

These earrings ALL DAY

These earrings ALL DAY

We'll file this under wishful thinking for my stature, but what a gorgeous color, shape, and that draped collar!

We’ll file this under wishful thinking for my stature, but what a gorgeous color, shape, and that draped collar!

La Vie en Swing

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

This could be yours!  Just add a belt. :)

This could be yours! Just add a belt. :)

If you’ve been following the adventures of Agent Carter, you’ll know that she has an impeccable 1940’s wardrobe that is ready for action and adventure – a particular purple dress caught the eye of Balboa dancer and instructor Nelle Cherry and, in her diligence and internet mastery, located a close approximation of said dress at La Vie en Swing. Classic 40’s shape, flattering waist, keyhole neckline, swing skirt, the Berlin dress is all the things I love in a dress and would love to wear on the dance floor. While I’m sure that this purple dress similarity a purely wonderful coincidence, it led me down the rabbit hole to exploring the La Vie En Swing clothing line.

The Berlin dress can also be made with a more full, swishy skirt, more suited for dancing - inquire within!

The Berlin dress can also be made with a more full, swishy skirt, more suited for dancing – inquire within!

La Vie en Swing offers a wonderful 1930’s, 40’s, and 50’s reproduction clothing line, with an obvious bent toward swing dancers, with pieces that offer ease of movement and a swish of the skirt. From the website: “Our patterns are accurate in order to enhance and flatter the femenine silhouette. Some of the designs come from original vintage sewing patterns and some other designs are our own creations inspired in the 30’s, 40’s & 50’s, precious years of the Swing Era.”

I am loving the color palette – pinks, purples, mint, cream, and a pop of orange or red. One of my big complaints with vintage 1940’s clothing is the overall lack of color (I find lots of black, brown, navy) and I think La Vie en Swing has embraced a cheerful color palette (bring on the spring!) without resorting to colors that look out of character or like a caricature of the era. The pieces are carefully selected, with lovely details – a little bow detail on the skirt, keyhole necklines (love, love, love!), high waisted sailor trousers, pockets on dresses, and an adorable take on the shirtwaist dress.

Right now the clothing line is limited to womenswear, but I see that menswear is coming soon!

Here are some of my favorites from the La Vie en Swing clothing line:

I really like the proportions of this shirtwaist - Mia light blue tea Dress, also available in pink, yellow, and two prints.

I really like the proportions of this shirtwaist – light blue Tea Dress

Another sassy keyhole dress, the Amy dress, inspired by a 1950's pattern, also available in soft yellow.

Another sassy keyhole dress, the Amy dress, inspired by a 1950’s pattern, also available in soft yellow.

The Berlin blouse, the white blouse to go with everything, with MORE KEYHOLE and lovely Art Deco seaming at the neck.  *swoon!*  Also available in a bright orange/coral color.

The Berlin blouse, the white blouse to go with everything, with MORE KEYHOLE and lovely Art Deco seaming at the neck. *swoon!* Also available in a bright orange/coral color.

The Lindy skirt, also available in red and black - the drape looks so nice, I'd love to see this in person!

The Lindy skirt, also available in red and black – the drape looks so nice, I’d love to see this in person!

This candy stripe blouse looks good enough to eat - Willa blouse, also available in a blue/brown stripe.

This candy stripe blouse looks good enough to eat – Willa blouse, also available in a blue/brown stripe.

High waisted sailor pants in denim!  Also available in black.  Love the pairing with the coral blouse!

High waisted sailor pants in denim! Also available in black. Love the pairing with the coral Berlin blouse!

American Duchess Cicero – 1920’s Brocade Shoe, Pre-Order Through March 2

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

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Remember when I wrote about American Duchess taking a poll on gorgeous historical shoes to make into real shoes? While my shoe submission didn’t win, this gorgeous, strappy 1920’s brocade shoe that they are calling “Cicero” did! Available in the most practical of evening colors – black, gold, and silver – and with leather soles these are prime for dancing. They are only taking orders through March 2 and that’s your last chance to get these shoes, because these “exlusives” are a one-shot deal! Make your decision soon…and wisely…

Shameless Plug for My Band’s Kickstarter

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

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As some of you may or may not know, I sing with several different bands, but I also have a band of my own – the Mint Julep Jazz Band – and we are currently running a Kickstarter for our second album, titled Battle Axe. Kickstarter is a great way to get new music and take advantage of pre-ordering the album, while helping the band to get enough money to actually complete the recording and manufacturing process.

If you’ve already backed us, awesome! :D

If you’ve never heard of us, check out our website for lots of videos and audio clips, pick up a copy of our first album on CD Baby, and head over to Kickstarter to see what it’s all about.

Thanks, everyone! Back to your regularly scheduled shopping in the next post, I promise. :)