Tag Archives: wingtips

Swing It – Dance Shoes and Apparel from Poland

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

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A row of Swing It shoes

The newest contender in the swing dance shoes and apparel market is Swing It, based in Krakow, Poland.  A quote from their Facebook page caught my eye, so we’ll start with that: “We believe in slow fashion philosophy – natural materials, quality and comfort.”  If this quote had the word adorable in it, it might be directly targeted at me.  I’m seeing this term “slow fashion” come up more often and, as I become the old lady I was always destined to be, I find myself drawn to this idea that fashion should slow down a little – as a vintage clothing wearer, this seems innate, but in terms of buying new garments made now (but in the vintage style – we’re full circle), this is a new term that applies to a very old concept, of buying quality things you love to last you for a long time.  I think slow fashion is easier for people who have developed their own sense of personal style, but then you’re here, reading this blog post, so maybe you have that or maybe you aspire to that more permanent sense of style.  Perhaps you’re here to augment your current style.  If you’re comfortable in yourself, comfortable in your quality clothes, and are sweating it out on the dance floor in natural fibers, what more do you need from a garment?  Whatever the reason, I’ve digressed far afield, so let’s return to Poland where this new swing dancer-focused brand resides.

I always try to start on a company’s about page, to get a flavor for what the company goals are and what makes it tick.  Swing It produces reproduction clothing and shoes from the 1930’s through the 1960s, based on original patterns, with all of the clothing made in Poland.  Goals are quality, great appearance, and customer satisfaction, but also personal satisfaction, as the owners of this company, Basia and Greg, design things they want to wear.  I believe in this concept – if you like it and are excited about it, certainly there are others who will/are, too.

The men’s shoes are cap toes or classic brogues, with your basic brown tones as well as a more adventurous color/combination for each style (I see you, dark green cap toes!).

The women’s shoes are also oxfords, in lovely suede in two of my favorite colors – purple and green.  It’s almost like they called me…

The clothing offerings on the Swing It website are limited to women’s clothing at this time, but I definitely see vests on Facebook, so I’m assuming there is more in the works.  For women, Swing It is launching the basics in an array of colors – for their skirt, a 1950’s reproduction wrap skirt with four buttons, and for their trousers, a high waist/pleated front/tapered leg reproduction from 1952 in classic suiting plaids and in red.

Here is what I am loving from Swing It:

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Please do ask me to dance, any time…

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I love a multi-tonal shoe, makes a neutral even more versatile by coordinating with more brown tones

 

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Chic red trousers

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These look luscious and soft…

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I’ll leave you with this minty green – cheers!

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Stacy Adams Shoes

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

Yesterday morning, Lithuanian swing dancer Mindaugas Bikauskas reminded me about Stacy Adams shoes, as he posted on Facebook that he had just received two pairs (it IS so exciting to get a new pair of shoes). I remember a time when a brand new pair of Stacy Adams shoes was all that Dirk from Big Bad Voodoo Daddy wanted for Christmas…but I digress. 😉

‘Tis the season for giving and a lot of guys I know seem to perpetually need new dance shoes. Stacy Adams is great for providing both standard, classic colors and some non-traditional color options for shoes. If you’d like for people to notice your footwork amongst the sea of white cap toes, check out the line from Stacy Adams.

Here are some viable options from the Stacy Adams website:

Gah! These are gorgeous! Someone please buy them and ask me to dance. Also available in black/white combo.

The Madison, available in 7 colors

The Faith - classic cap toe in black patent leather

For those who have always wanted spats...available in four colors

The Dayton - a different take on the oxford, in four color combos

Festive red oxfords to go with your Santa suit. 🙂

ILHC 2011 Vendors

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

ILHC swag

I had the pleasure of dancing and competing at this year’s International Lindy Hop Championships, held just outside of Washington, D.C. in Alexandria, Virginia. The event was a unique mix of swing dancers, in varying styles of dance, from around the globe. I think the event is best summed up by saying that ILHC is where you can see all those people you see dancing on YouTube – but there’s nothing better than seeing it live, as a video can’t quite capture the energy these couples and teams generate or the dynamic in the room.

(I apologize in advance for the quality of the photographs, as I forgot my real camera and had to use my phone)

Dancestore in the house!

Like most large swing dance events nowadays, ILHC had its own set of vendors, most of which I would categorize as the “essentials” providers – shoes, bloomers, hair flowers, and vintage/vintage-inspired clothing. Baltimore-based Dancestore.com was there with a lineup of Lindy and Bal-friendly shoes, including their new pair of white wingtips, which look gorgeous in person. Nina Gilkenson‘s mom, Laurie Gilkenson, was on hand, selling shoes for Dancestore, as well as vintage odds, ends, clothing, and shoes from Nina’s vintage shoe collection. If you wore a size 6.5, it was definitely your lucky day! More photos below of this and the other vendors.

Forties Forward had an array of new hair flowers, since I last saw these gals, Erica DeBlasio and Michelle Postles, at Lindy Focus. My new favorite bloom was a giant white bloom, possibly a magnolia blossom, that was so large it could almost be a hat!

My Heinies, in grand fashion, occupied the largest vendor space, with racks of colorful bloomers in all styles, as well as a beautiful collection of dance shoes for men and women. I noticed a particularly lovely pair of men’s two tone brown wingtips that garnered a lot of attention from the leaders in attendance, as well as some new to-die-for red heels in the collection. I noticed a number of followers in the competitions wearing My Heinies…and some who didn’t, but that’s another story…

A letterman's sweater from Model J Vintage

Working the booth with My Heinies was Model J Vintage, the Etsy store of New York dancer Joy Grad, which specializes in “a lifetime of collectibles directly to you from my personal closets and new adventures.” She turned up the volume for ILHC, offering a collection of both dance-ready and exquisite vintage and reproduction items from her collection and from Carol Fraser‘s closet. I swore I wasn’t going to buy anymore gowns, but I couldn’t pass up a 1940’s gown made of green silk, with a chevron bodice and velvet bow – it was a triple threat and I didn’t stand a chance. 😉

Last, but certainly not least, Mike Thibault of Vintage Jazz Art set up a gorgeous display of his framed prints, which are simply stunning in person. If you have an empty spot on a wall in your home, consider filling it with a daily reminder of your awesome dance hobby…

Thanks to everyone who organized the event and to those sold their wares at IHLC! I hope to return next year!

Gilkenson swag

A most exquisite pair of heels from the late 1800's/early 1900's, with jewels on the heels

My Heinies at ILHC

An array of Heinies

Some delicious new shoes, courtesy of My Heinies

An adorable blouse from Model J Vintage

Joy showing off a lovely vintage dress

The gown!

That glorious magnolia-like blossom I was telling you about, front and center, from Forties Forward

The coy ladies of Forties Forward

The Vintage Jazz Art display

Men’s and Women’s Shoes on eBay

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

This is definitely a good shoe week on eBay, so here are a couple of finds for the gents from the 1940’s and some more Remix shoes for the ladies:

Brown and white cap toes with wonderful broguing, $49.99

Brown Nettleton wingtips, size 8D - $24.99

Remix "Balboa" in gold, size 7.5 - $88

Remix "Pleated Toe" wedge, silver, size 11 - $39.99

Cruisin Australia: 1940’s and 1950’s Reproduction Shoes for Men and Women

Veronica wedge - comes in 5 colors...drool...

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

While I was going through my inbox yesterday, deleting old emails, I came upon an email I sent to myself in April of 2005 titled “More wedges!” In the message was a link to Cruisin Australia, an online retailer of obvious origin who carries some really fantastic reproduction 1940’s and 1950’s shoes. I’m fairly determined to bring back the saddle shoe and this could be the supplier, with 3 different color schemes for men and 7 different color schemes for women. Cruisin Australia has a great selection of wedges and low heels for women, including a pair with leather perforations, which let those hot dancing feet breathe! The menswear line has a classic selection, including wingtips, captoes, suedes, and bucks.

Here are my favorites from the site:

Saddle shoes for men and women

Jayne wedge - available in 6 colors

Captoes - available in brown and white, black and white, and all black

Men’s 1940’s Shoes in Brown

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

I’d hate to leave the gents out of the shoe bonanza this week, so here are some choice selections from eBay:

These shoes are gorgeous and expensive BUT the seller is open to offers - never hurts to try!

A different take on the wingtip with cool shading.

Perforated for optimal foot ventilation

Guys and gals Aris Allens on eBay

A pair of black and white spat style wingtips, size 9.5, and a pair of white mesh oxfords, size 10. Go!