Wednesday, December 22, 2010
Friday, December 17, 2010
Monday, December 6, 2010
Amongst all the holiday hustle and bustle, Kelly and I took some time last week to photo some of our new items. We are truly dedicated to Merry weather but our schedules have been really conflicting lately so that doesn't leave us much time to work on things. We are trying to make Merryweather more of our everyday lives but I think at the end of the day, its a work in progress. With each day, we are learning something new to guide us in the future. I wish I had all the time in the world to shop, photo, and sit here at my computer, but sadly, with work, I don't have as much time as I would like. Some day it will be different! I know it!
Anyway....Kelly wasn't feeling well last week (she had that cold that everyone around me seems to be getting). Gladly, knock on wood I haven't been really sick yet so fingers crossed! Even though she didn't feel her best she pressed on and we spent Tuesday night sipping herbal tea, playing dress up and having fun taking some great pictures of our new finds. Like always, it was a good time. Normally our vintage work nights turn into, "lets drink a bottle of wine, watch High Fidelity and eat candy) but since Kelly wasn't feeling well on this particular evening, we were all business for a change so we were able to accomplish a lot. Kelly actually modeled a lot of the new stuff and I cannot lie. I found it hilarious. Kelly modeling wasn't necessarily funny but the fact that everything she wore for the shots are all items I myself would own and she would never own made the whole situation quite comical. Now all we need to do is dress me up in floral scarves, gray skirts and brown boots so I can turn into Kelly for a day. I'm not going to hold my breath for that though. I'm quite happy with my gold belts and polyester dresses. Here are some pictures of our night. More to come!
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
Browsing through swaths of dresses, as always the color green jumped out at me. The color green, with a collar, long sleeves and button front? I was intrigued. The instant I liberated this garment from the rack and drew my attention to the tag I developed a sudden urge to eat an entire box of Samoa cookies. Oh yes, it was a vintage Girl Scout uniform dress!
For your sake, I've restrained myself from embarking on a lengthy diatribe about the politics of the Girls Scouts and the imagery as a signifier for the enhancement of separate spheres of masculinity and femininity in the 1950s. [You’re welcome!]
Anyway, digressing from my cynicism, the images and visual components of this stuff is getting me a riled up! Check out the section The Art of Being a Girl Scout! The set of six Christmas cards featuring silhouetted Girl Scouts participating in the joys of the season…. from 1932! The simplicity of the black white and red color scheme is striking! Right up the Merryweather alley!
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Anyway, on this particular Friday we spent a big chunk of time looking through Rin Tanaka's vintage collection books titled " My Freedam." He has nine volumes, with more to come including one based solely on t-shirts, hippies, and 60s pop fashion. Steve has every book and Tinaka signs every one he sends! I was in awe while looking at his latest book (volume 9) titled "My Freedam 'Freakout' Fashions from Hippies to Punks" which just arrived in the mail last week. There were so many items in this book that I long to hold, touch, try on etc etc. Every time I turned a page, I would yell, "Shut up!" I think Shin was slightly confused considering he doesn't understand my sarcasm as of yet (not many people do) therefore I spent roughly 10 minutes explaining the brilliance of Fleetwood Mac (give or take my playing 8 or so of their songs.) I vaguely remember playing Neil Young for Shin as well but I don't think that had anything to do with the t-shirts I spent the afternoon drooling over. I think I just couldn't get over the fact that Shin had no idea who Neil Young is. Sacrilege. Sidenote: if you have never seen his tribute concert to George Harrison, you need to see it, and you need to see it now. Its honestly amazing.
Anyway, check out these t-shirts! Also, if you happened to be in BAV while I was looking at these t-shirts I sincerely apologize. I don't normally touch books like that. I simply couldn't get over that Rin Tinaka has all of these t-shirts. I have never truly been able to understand the concept of collecting over selling but now I see. If I had these t-shirts, I wouldn't be selling them either. I would hide them under my bed....in a safe....with 12 locks and a watch dog.
Fleetwood Mac late 70s
ZZ Top Worldwide Texas Tour 1976
David Bowie Tour 4 1974
Paul McCartney Wings Tour 1976
The Who (Peter Townsend) Star Rights Co. 1979
Blue Oyster Cult 1978
Alice Cooper Russel Brand mid 70s.
Oh a final note, check out this interview Tinaka did in Los Angeles on how he got into vintage in addition to where he finds his inspiration. It all started with a pair of Levis 501s. Brilliant. Its really good.
Monday, November 8, 2010
Now I do realize that this is more of a post dealing with my moderate obsession rather than her relationship or direct correlation to vintage (even though she does wear long head scarves) but it still counts considering she inspires me and makes me happy. I cannot tell you how many days and nights I have sorted and cleaned items, searched for rare things like a nerd on the internet for hours, ALL while listening to album after album of Fleetwood Mac or Stevie herself. Its almost on a comparable level of my eating fast food while thrift shopping. They just go together! I can't have it any other way. Finding a cute 60s shift dress= big mac. Posting a new bag online= Tell Me Lies.
A short bio? Why yes of course!
Stephanie Lynn Nicks was born on May 26, 1948 in Phoenix Arizona. Her father Jess Nicks was a struggling country singer who had Nicks performing duets with him by the time she was four years old. She received a Goya guitar for her sixteenth birthday and wrote her first song titled, "I've Loved and I've Lost, I'm Sad But Not Blue." Sheer Genius already at the tender age of sixteen. She went to college for awhile (majoring in Speech Communication, like me!) and dated her Mac partner, Lindsey Buckingham. No doubt their relationship produced some amazing songs via Fleetwood Mac. Umm, Rumors anyone? She actually met Buckingham when she was a Senior in high school. She watched him play a version of "California Dreamin" at a Christian social event and from then on was by his side. True love.
Career-wise, Nicks has outdone herself. 1977s Rumors produced four U.S. top 10 singles including "Dreams" (their only U.S. number one hit) which stayed in the number one spot for 31 weeks! She has produced seven solo albums (yes seven, including the amazing Bella Donna) and has plans to release her eighth (first one 10 years!) on March 1, 2011. I cannot wait for this.
Plain and simple, Stevie Nicks is amazing. She is dreamy. She is beauiful. She is vibrant. She is strong. She is a genuine artist to the core. She is my inspiration and I wouldn't have it any other way.
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
Tuesday, October 26, 2010
Phew. Anyway, I've had a lot going on in terms of transitions in my life over the past month. I can finally take a deep breath and really get to work! After Halloween (I think I'm going to be a zombie btw....I was going to be a clown but its too predictable. If you knew me, you would agree) Kelly and I will officially have all of our stuff in our possession, and more new new new stuff! Its going to be great being able to make Merryweather a part of our everyday lives. I know its going to be a lot of work, but Kelly has already taken the initiative with so many important aspects (facebook!! etc.) I am feeling very positive and hopeful that it will come together and be real. Real is the key word for me. Real and of course, fun.... and of course, meaningful.
While we wait on getting our stuff.....heres some pics of fall so far :)
Friday, October 22, 2010
This passion is what we want to bring to all of you. I think I can speak for both of us here when I say the feeling of connecting someone with that one perfect vintage item is indescribable. I have been that person (the seeker) too many times to count, and the odds, generally don’t run in your favor. With Merryweather, Crystal and I want to turn those odds around for all you seekers, affordably, of course! You'll also be noticing more information about the items we are selling, as I (ever the research junkie) will be burrowing into the depths of fashion history, emerging with the facts about most of the legit vintage labels we have in stock.
So, who is this new partner? You're probably wondering.... well I think Crystal accurately pinned down the nature of our relationship in her last post. Let me, briefly share a little bit about myself. I am a native Chicagoan who escaped a few years ago to live abroad for one year in London, then moved to New York City before returning to Chicago last spring. Returning to this city was probably one of the best decisions I've made in the last decade.
I have a deep connection to my relatively large extended family on both sides. This, I am positive is where both my love for history and object-related stories, and desire to always be pushing forward and progressing comes from.
My paternal grandmother probably holds the world record for most obscure things packed away for over 50 years! It's quite endearing -- just don't bring it up to my aunt who has been charged with the task of helping her clean out closets in preparation for a move next year. This closet cleaning and the items my grandmother has unburied recently reaffirmed my passion for vintage. Among the old Stinson's Laundry shirtboards and emory boards (self-promotion at it's finest people!!) Nanny withdrew from her treasure-chest a few clothing items that had me in a tizzy when I saw them. Among them: classic rhinestone broaches, necklaces & earrings accompanied by several newspaper articles from the mid-80s declaring a "Rhinestone Renaissance". Nanny is very thorough. Probably my favorite item, though, is a teal wool sweater that fits like a glove. In her high school years, Nanny had two winter wool sweaters, and this was one of them... a garment over 60 years old. I'm determined to make it last, though it's been difficult not to wear it once a week. And last but definitely not least, the A.S. Webster beaver fur cropped coat. Oh, how amazing is that?
Combine these two matriarchs, and that's where you'll start to understand where I'm coming from: seeking vintage for the fashion and respecting the connection to a past, but taking care to combine those pieces with the contemporary to create something wholly unique and now... or if I'm lucky, creating something a little ahead of now.
Enough about me, let's get this show on the road! Stay tuned, friends!
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
I am taking a moment to talk about the biggest change of all. My long time partner in crime on the vintage road, Nathanial, has come to the realization that he has way to much on his personal plate to truly devote his time, money and attention to this venture. Yes its sad. I will miss him. I was upset about it for a long time to be honest (hence why the website on Etsy hasn't been touched in over a month.) Nate literally was driving himself crazy with work, school, and some personal stuff that whenever we saw each other we were talking work...and thats no fun when you're friends first and foremost and hardly have time for one another already. Things have worked out for the best, and I truly mean that! We are still close buds and now we can just be close buds and not talk about biz when we see one other! In terms of Merryweather, I am so happy now because things can move forward with more speed and attention! And this brings me to my most important announcement.......
Welcome my new partner, KELLY STINSON!!!!!
Personal stories asides, I was so happy to hear her express interest in going 50/50 with me on my Merryweather venture! She has always been a help from the start (modeling clothes, helping with photos etc) but now she can really put her own personal spin on things. Its always great to have two distinct minds on one great project! And while I have always been one to take on way too much at once and handle it fine, I am prone to anxiety attacks SO it is nice to have someone by my side to help me along the whole crazy online business track (which will hopefully be a real live store one day eeeeee). Its also a comfort having someone by my side who also gets stupid excited about vintage clothes and furniture. It makes me feel like less of a nerd. Who else can really want to sit down and research the age of a Foxy tag? Well besides me? Kelly does! Thats hard to come by, believe meeee.
I am also happy to have her along because her sense of style is a lot different compared to mine which should be great in terms of versatility in the items we sell. She has a very earthy, Anthropologie, bird painting, Doris Day kinda thing going for her. Don't get me wrong. I love and respect it but I definitely admire it from afar. As we all know, I love my eighties power suits. I love polka dots. And I LOVE things that from a first glance are labeled "creepy." These items usually involve images of animals , fringe, and sequins.
Now that Kelly is here and on board we are going to be changing Merryweather like crazy and incorporating it into our everyday lives so it actually turns into something worthwhile! Its one thing to collect vintage as a hobby, but I just realized in looking at my collection that I have SO MUCH STUFF I haven't even photographed yet. Literally, some of the stuff Nate and I have collected is amazing. And its just sitting there! I am ready. Kelly is ready. We are going to give Merryweather our best effort and really have fun with it! This is what I want to do with my life so I feel very lucky right now. Even if it doesn't become some huge business, at least we're doing what we love! Its vintage people! Its crazy. Its colorful. I am so excited! Random but it reminds me of something my boss at BAV said today. He said he really felt like sipping champagne on a faux fur rug in front of a fire listening to Patsy Cline. SHIT that sounds so good right now, and the fact that I have a new awesome vintage partner in crime makes me want to do it EVEN MORE. :)
Kelly, welcome to the world of Vintage wonderful. I am so happy you're here.
Thursday, October 14, 2010
Speaking of high prices when it comes to vintage, the whole concept of over-charging has definitely been on my mind lately. It makes me sad to think that because Vintage clothing has made somewhat of a comeback over the recent years that sellers can take advantage of the naive buyer. You know when you meet a good seller because they do their research to ensure they are you giving you the most accurate price for an item. They can explain why something is 100 dollars versus 10 dollars because they've done the work to price accordingly. It takes time and dedication. And to some people, well, a lot of people its really all about the money. Its sad. Thankfully, the people I work closely with in the vintage world are nothing like that, which I am most grateful for. They actually care and are dorky about old stuff, like me! :)
Apart from that sidenote and my disappointment with the attitude of the owner, this Antique Mall did have some cool heirlooms. I captured my favorites.
I really want this dish.
All in all I would say it was worth the trip over there. They had some rare items, especially in terms of old furniture but overall most of what they carried clothes-wise I have seen before. Also, too pricey and not the friendliest. They need cheering up in the form of sunshine, lollipops, and Nancy Sinatra. That would make them happier I think!