vintage

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I spent a lovely and long day yesterday – 8:00 am ‘til 5:30 pm – tramping around the acres and acres of antiques, junque, architiques and vintage stuff at the Brimfield Antique Show. Billed as “the largest outdoor antique show in the world” it has 6,000 vendors and a festive flea market vibe. It is virtually impossible to see the entire thing in one day.

This was my first Brimfield experience so I hooked up with a fellow designer friend who knows the ropes. The show is divided into multiple sections, each having their own flavor and days of operation. We chose to go mid-week, even though all the shows weren’t yet open thinking it would be less crowded. Being a week day we called it “inspiration work”.

It was fascinating to see what people were selling (piles of rusty old faucet handles, vintage vending machines, plastic toys from the ‘70’s, old industrial lighting) and to see what people were happily toting away (taxidermy creatures, fixtures from old factories, wooden packing crates, chairs without seats). Regardless of how lowly, all this stuff had value to the buyers and the sellers. We never made it to the area selling Chippendale furniture and Chinese export porcelain, if there even was one.

There was so much stuff to look at we decided early on to focus our attention on textiles, paper, and ski related objects allowing ourselves the occasional sidetrack to check out free standing signage letters from old gas stations and super market signage. Here’s a sampling of the fruits our treasure hunting.

If you want to see it all for yourself, the show is open through Sunday.

Ribbon with skiers

Vintage silk scarf

3/4″ sterling snowflake skier pin

Lampshade made from vintage barkcloth from Lake’s Lampshades. My favorite find!

Detail from embroidered hankie

Silk scarf from the 70′s

Sweet Tyrolean themed ribbon

Vintage postcards from Snoqualmie Pass, Magic Mountain and Aspen

And here are some things that we passed on…

Vintage skis

In hindsight I should have bought this exquisite wooden flask covered in animal fur and decorated with tooled and braided leather and embroidery. The dealer had no idea of its origin or intended use. Do you? I’d love to know.

And am I crazy to have passed on an original of Lou Hechenberger’s New Hampshire ski poster for $1,200? Unfortunately the crispness of the design and clarity of color is lost in this image. It was a beauty.

An assortment of wooden skis and ski boots – various eras

Plastique. Antique?

More skis

This guy bought his Tyrolean hat for a steal minutes before we met him – darn! It was covered with beautiful souvenir pins from all over the the alps and is in mint condition.

Enjoy your weekend! (And Thank you A.N. for sharing your pix.)

 

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I drove a 1972 orange VW bug just like this one, but I never, ever dressed like this! Enjoy your weekend!

Via: Lawrence Peregrine-Trousers

For more VW inspiration click here

 

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Easter is one my favorite holidays with it’s promise of re-birth. I swooned when I saw this hen-on-a-basket on the step of an antique shop in Reykjavik – so sweet! It would make a perfect Easter table decoration filled with jelly beans.

My Easter dinner table is not complete without clusters of hand painted Rômanian Easter eggs as the centerpiece. I was fortunate to meet the artisan who made them in her home and to watch her decorate them with amazing skill. Click here to see how they are made along with my photos.

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One thing always leads to another when I’m searching for something on the internet. I get side-tracked and discover things I didn’t even know I wanted to know about! Yesterday I found this amazing ski-themed blouse circa 1957-1960 on the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising’s blog. It’s just too great not to share. Here’s a bit of ski fashion history cribbed right from their blog.

“Until the 1950s, ski wear consisted of baggy woolen pants and knitted sweaters, topped with a bulky wool overcoat. Though warm and functional, these clothes did nothing to flatter the figure. This changed in 1952 with the introduction of Bogner ski pants. Created by Maria Bogner, member of a German skiwear producing family, “Bogners” were a form-fitting ski pant made of wool and a newly developed nylon fiber called Helanca. By 1955, Bogners were available in a variety of bright colors. Because they displayed the muscular curves of both male and female skiers, Bogners were credited with introducing sex appeal to skiing. According to Ski magazine, “Marilyn Monroe, Ingrid Bergman and the Shah of Iran wore them. Henry Ford ordered 15 pairs. Overnight, skiing had been transformed into a sexy and very visible sport.”

 

“Bogners appeared at the perfect moment, just as North Americans were experiencing unprecedented economic prosperity in the wake of World War II. Many individuals with surplus income turned their attention to the serious pursuit of sporting and leisure activities, such as skiing. Widespread interest in skiing was encouraged by simplifications in ski boots, skis and ski lifts, making it easier for a novice to get both up and down the mountain. At the end of the day, skiers could relax at comfortable resort lodgings, which often included spacious rooms for dining and dancing, along with heated outdoor pools. Skiing was now a fashionable activity, no longer limited to those rugged enough to withstand a cold slog through the snow.”

While the Bogner family might have stolen the limelight, there is historical evidence that in Megeve, a collaboration between skiier Emile Allais and the AAllard family brought about the first ski stretch pants. Armand AAllard was a skilled tailor in Megeve and made custom clothing for both on and off the slopes.  Unlike “Bogner” his was a custom not production affair which is why he likely has taken a backseat to the internationaly known ski brand.

The FIDM Museum ski-themed blouse seen here details the daily activity of a stretch pant clad skier on vacation. As you can see from the silk-screened images, actual skiing occupies only a portion of her day. Her brightly colored ski wear is typical of the late 1950s, when retailers offered ski wear in a variety of fashionable colors and patterns. Many urban department stores featured ski boutiques, and in 1959, at least one fashion writer suggested that ski wear would soon be seen both off and on the slopes. Not surprisingly, the slim silhouette of late 1950s ski wear echoed (or vice-versa) the slim pants then seen in casual sportswear.

For more vintage ski fashion click here or follow my “Vintage Winter” boards on Pinterest.

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Besides thinking it’s a little scary looking, and that it might be hard to breathe while wearing it, I’m at a loss for words regarding the aesthetic of this 1962 ski mask by Emellio Pucci. What do you think about it?

Enjoy your weekend!

For More vintage ski inspiration click here.

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.

I take the jumps,

And do them right,

But my heart jumps

only

when you are in sight!

 

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone!

For more Vintage Skiing Inspiration on my blog click here, and on Pinterest.

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These photos are  jet-setty in a kind of 60′s way! I’m just as fascinated by the compositions, and the play between light and shadow as I am by the skiwear and equipment. Now, wasn’t that James Bond I saw jump out of a helicopter and schuss away?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photographs by Eugene Vernier via Trunk Archive

For more vintage skiing inspiration click here.

 

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High in the Swiss Alps between 1900 and 1960 indestructible Swiss Army blankets were hand woven in alpine villages from the grey and brown wool of local sheep. The blankets, woven with the characteristic red stripe and white cross were stored in caves for many peaceful decades until synthetic sleeping bags replaced them. Each blanket bears the initials of the maker and the date it was woven. Sometimes a stainless steel coin or seal is woven into the fabric. Each one is unique.

In the Swiss village of Törbel, cobbler Titus Karlen came up with the idea to reuse the blankets by hand stitching them into heavy-duty tote bags and knapsacks. Their leather straps are recycled from straps and belts from the Swiss army.

Family run Karlen Swiss, the largest employer in the village of Törbel, contributes to the local economy by providing jobs to women who would otherwise have to travel beyond the valley for work. Their work is synonymous with Swiss quality and ingenuity.

My passion for Swiss mountain culture (edelweiss, cheese, skiing, cow bells, mountain huts, yodeling) is embodied in the blanket bags. So many aspects of this collection appeal to me; the recycling of vintage, yet new, blankets into practical, rugged and attractive bags and accessories, all bag components are handmade, and that the “hand” of the original craftsperson is evident in each individual piece. Guess what’s on my Christmas list?

 

Photos via The Desalpes Company - another Swiss company making bags and household items from vintage Swiss Army blankets.

Become an interactive part of Poppy Gall Design Studio on facebook  - click here.

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Take a guess at what this vintage camping themed flannel print was used for. The inside of a sleeping bag? Pajamas? The lining of a rugged vintage inspired tweed jacket?  You probably wouldn’t suspect that it is a 1980-something Ralph Lauren skirt that I found in the bottom of my fabric drawer. Perhaps I’ll wear it for fun this Thanksgiving  (with long sweater and a cinched leather belt at the waist and tall boots) and then repurpose it into balsam pillows. Anyone have any clever ideas for how to reuse the fabric?

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T.G.I.F.! Out to mow my lawn so that I may fully enjoy my weekend. Thank goodness I don’t have to mow my car too! Have a nice weekend!

Hairy VW Beetle

©Santaro Graphics Ltd.

To see more VW silliness click below.

The Bokja Bug

The Bokja Bug

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258716 - TOUR DE FRANCE

A picture is worth a thousand words.

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Have a wonderful weekend wherever your wheels take you!

tumblr_ln9ctsV8TF1qef86vo1_500

Via: Mexican Fireworks

Click here to see more VW beetle lore.

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130 year old legendary French sporting brand Le Coq Sportif has something to crow about at this year’s Tour de France. Once again they are providing the prestigious Yellow, Green, Polka Dot and White jerseys for the race. Le Coq made jerseys for Le Tour starting in 1951 until 1988 when Castelli moved onto the scene. Nike was involved from 1996 to 2010.

maillot jaune

1951 Tour de France winner Hugo Koblet’s wool “maillot jaune”. Note the pointed collar and button front placket, a style which disappeared a few years later. Jerseys made prior to the introduction of synthetic fabrics in the late 70′s had button front pockets like the ones shown here. The Le Coq label is visible at the neckline.

Le Coq

An evolution of Le Coq Sportif logo. Via: Cycling Art Blog

Eddy Mercx_1974Tour_ViaLeCoqSportif

1974 Tour champion Eddy Mercx in Le Coq’s yellow jersey. Via: Le Coq Sportif

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board game 1.5

Vintage Cycling Toys

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Love this vintage Swiss postcard of feline bicycle racers from the 50′s. The astonished looks on the faces of the contenders and spectators at #15′s blow out, #13′s cool shades, and the mice on the course make it priceless! Have a wonderful flat-free weekend!

Sprinting Felines

For more 2-wheeled inspiration click here.

x

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I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the things I save and why. I have drawers full of scrap fabric, boxes of photographs and slides and postcards, jars of buttons and foreign currency, a closet full of vintage sweaters and a big leather suitcase that once was my father’s, full of old tee shirts.

Rifling through my accumulated stuff brings back vivid and pleasurable memories of times that I might otherwise forget. That’s the ticket stub from my first date with my future husband, that’s the pack I used trekking in Nepal, I wore this sweater all through college etc.

I go through periodic binges of weeding out my stuff. Sometimes it’s easy and sometimes I get bogged down with memories and can’t get rid of anything. Sometimes I wonder why the heck I even saved the item in the first place. Sometimes I wonder what it would be like to lose my stuff to flood or fire. Would it be liberating?

Yesterday I opened that leather suitcase full of tee shirts. “Forgotten” events and places popped out at me. Even though I probably won’t wear any of those tee shirts ever again I can’t imagine turning them into dust rags. They are part of my life’s fabric.

Mountain Transport

For instance, I acquired this tee shirt in the late 80’s from bush pilot Doug Geeting in Talkeetna, Alaska. I hadn’t thought about this trip in years. He flew five of us onto the Ruth Glacier and dropped us off. We spent the next few weeks in perpetual daylight skiing, climbing and parasailing until he swept down and carried us back to civilization. The tee used to be black. I wore it so often, trying to retain the euphoria and essence of my Alaska experience that it faded to grey. How can I ever throw it away?! (Besides, I still really like the graphics.)

Do you save things to remember your past?

x

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