To continue with my wardrobe must haves we go for G – O –
Gentleman’s Hat – every women looks sexy in a men’s style hat. The fedora – a feature in the Forties for both men and women – wear it with attitude like Greta Garbo, the trilby similar to the fedora but with a smaller brim. They are great on a bad hair day or on damp days when you need to look chic but you know your hair is going to go frizzy as soon as you step outside the door.
Gloves – long satin gloves conjures images of old Hollywood – think Ava Gardner and Rita Hayworth, those were the times when no self-respecting women would go out with out her gloves, they were a symbol of elegance and femininity but went out of Vogue in the 60’s and 70’s. But a woman wearing the gloves (and I am not talking the knitted fingerless variety here!!) it is still very glamorous.
A chic pair of gloves with a vintage suit or 3/4 length ones with a duster coat is beyond stylish.
Hats – this one is in addition to Gentleman’s hats, these are the fun whimsical ones that make a statement. The simple beret that you can pile your hair into and pin a brooch on the front, a chic cocktail hat or fascinator to wear with your LBD.
Investment bag – I am not ashamed to admit I did go through a phase of being a bit of a label whore – I coveted the designs straight off the catwalk (although all the things I dreamed of buying had a vintage influence to them), I do have a few designer pieces in my wardrobe and one investment bag that was bought by my lovely hubby for my 4oth birthday. Now my investment bag would be a great vintage skin Kelly style bag (I do still dream that a Hermes Kelly will turn up somewhere and the person selling it doesn’t know what they have – I live in hope!!!) but having a fabulous elegant timeless bag that you know you will have forever and make you feel luxurious when ever you carry it.
Khakis – this is the nearest I get to jeans. I wear them with a white shirt, loafers and little scarf at the neck or with a 50’s twin set and ballet pumps.
Lingerie – I am not talking your basic M & S undies here but the frothy frilly things that make you feel sexy, sometimes what you put on before the outfit can make all the difference to how you feel. Invest in a few glamorous sets.
Little Black Dress – very often the perfect LBD finds a girl when she is least expecting it, if you go out on a mission to find one it will elude you. But if you are on the way to some where else it will jump it at you. Now mater what the cost you should buy it if it is the perfect one for you because it is one of the most useful items in your wardrobe and if you do the maths of cost per wear.
Choose the best material you can find, nothing too tight or shiny. Consider your LBD as a canvas instead of a fallback. It demands to be accessorized and adorned. Vintage is great here as there as there are so many icons to take inspiration from. It is said that you only need one but I would say a minimum of 2 – one knee length and one long.
Little White Dress – this doesn’t get quite as much press as it’s sister the LBD but I think that there is nothing chicer in Summer – I would go for a cute shirt-waister 50’s style or a Jackie O style shift, gold, silver and nude are best friends to the LWD.
Luggage – a lucky few can buy a matching set of luggage but for the rest of us it is best to buy one piece at a time. Build up a some classic suitcases and every stylish girls must have a vintage make-up case (I have yet for find the perfect one but I have fun looking).
Man’s White Shirt – keep it as close to a man’s version as possible with mother of pearl buttons, keep it basic and classic. Think Audrey Hepburn in Roman Holiday or Elizabeth Taylor in Giant.
Mary Janes – these shoes became popular in the 1920’s as they looked great and yo could dance in them. They are best in patent but why not try velvet or animal print. They have now become iconic thanks to Carrie Bradshaw in Sex in the City.
Monogrammed Stationery – in this day of technology when we send text and emails instead of letters (don’t get me wrong emails are essential for business and we would have blogs without computers), there is something wonderfully romantic and old fashioned about receiving hand written letters through the post Sending “thank you notes” on monogrammed stationery is very stylish chic and old school. Two of the best are Mrs John L Strong and Smythsons of Bond Street – these are luxury versions but there are some lovely cheaper versions on Etsy.
Nail Polish – I am a bit of a traditionalist here and for the best retro look I would always go for vamp red or light pink. I prefer a short square nail rather than long talons and I don’t go in for fashion colours of blue or green but maybe a strong burgundy would be OK.
One – Piece Swimming Costume – I am not one for bikinis I prefer the cover up of a swimming costume I always think that it has more glamour and is more elegant. There are so many vintage styles out there now that you can channel your inner Hollywood icon.