Emilio Pucci, Manolo Blahnik and Gucci are all names that dance through the dreams of any serious fashionista.
Seventeen vintage dealers filled The Woman’s Club of Coconut Grove this weekend with one-of-a-kind items, as part of the first ever Miami Vintage Clothing and Accessories Show and Sale.
The show, the brainchild of Sheffield MacIntyre and Gretchen Rust, proprietors of online vintage store Back-in-style.com, opened with a party on Friday night, and ran throughout Saturday and Sunday.
Thousands of items crammed onto racks crowded the floor, ranging from sheer silk dresses, the most delicate lace tops, deliciously shiny patent leather handbags, and pearls, sequins and rhinestones galore.
“Miami is such a fashion town, and you see inspiration in current clothing from vintage designers,” Rust said.
As the first vintage clothing show in Miami, local retailers, as well as those hailing from Massachusetts and New York, flocked to the Grove to peddle their items.
“Think of styles by Marc Jacobs, Prada or any current designer. What they are making now has elements of the past, whether it’s a 1960s shape, a retro pattern or both,” MacIntyre, the show’s founder said.
Models sporting choice items from different vendors strolled among the show attendees.
“That’s on backwards,” Newman noticed with a laugh at one point in the evening, as one model slowly strolled by wearing an extraordinary chocolate brown gown with wide ruffles at the shoulders and intricately stitched seams lining from top to bottom. “I can’t stand the way new clothes are made,” Newman said, as she pointed out the detailing on the gown. “I appreciate the workmanship in the seaming. You have to pay couture prices to get craftsmanship like this today.”
Several others vendors echoed the same sentiment as they lovingly showed their wares.
“I look at the materials, cuts, fabrics, zipper placement, length and labels,” said Lisa Marie Smith, owner of Orlando Vintage Clothing Co., a visiting vendor. “That’s how I find out which decade they’re from, plus asking past owners and from doing research.”
The guessing game of deducing which decade garments dated from is a challenge.
“It’s always funny when you decide a piece is from a particular decade and then someone comes up to you and says, ‘No, I lived through it!’ and tells you it’s from another.” said MacIntyre of Back-in-style.com.
Gesturing at one dress, a floor-length sundress decorated with a floral print in muted lime green and saffron yellow, she said that the large bow at the front of the waist appeared to date the piece to the 1960s, but the colors seemed to place the garment in the 1970s.
“Lucky Magazine wanted this one for a shoot,” she said, picking up a small, reptile printed Caprice clutch from the 1980s. “We’re going to play hard-to-get with them,” MacIntyre added. “We’ll see if anyone at the show wants it.”
As is always the case with vintage shopping, however, the only downside of the show was the high price of most of the items. While a college student can certainly appreciate the beauty of a light, floaty 1970s peasant dress, taking it home becomes less of a possibility with a $300 price tag. But then again, in Miami, many hardly blink an eye at dropping several hundred on a pair of Coach sunglasses.
For those who missed last weekend’s vintage show, fear not! Another show is to come in the spring, from March 16-18.
Janies of Miami
Le Chic Boutique
Nightingale’s Vintage Clothing Salon
TC DC Vintage
The Living Dolls
Hannah Bae can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.