Most of my vintage dresses are mostly circa 1970s, 1980s and perhaps one or two from the 1960s. I have been trying to expand my collection by acquiring dresses or clothes from the 1940s and 1950s recently. In Asia, this can be a challenging task if one purely looking for these in local vintage stores. Selection or choices could be limited and the price would be a little too pricey. I believe these vintage stores most probably buying their stock from the US or Europe. A more affordable option is to buy 1980s does 1940s or 1950s. However, for someone who loves the history and nostalgia of vintage dresses, this does not feel the same as the original piece.
Before embarking on the journey to search for the perfect 1940s/50 dress, a basic knowledge of characteristics clothing in the 1940s and 1950s is important to ensure the piece is genuinely from these periods. There are a number of blogs and websites giving tips or guides identifying or buying dresses from any period of time; making it easy to do research within a click of a mouse. The Vintage Fashion Guild has good resources and information. One major characteristic that I use as my own guide is the side seam metal zipper.
Finally, I purchased my first vintage 1940s dress on Esty! Yay! The dress was on sale - double yay! When I received the parcel, I was so excited and couldn't wait to get home to try the dress. It fits but the hem is a bit longer for my frame. I am still contemplating whether to shorten the hemline or to leave it as it is. Another reason why I have not worn it yet; the material is semi-sheer and I need to buy a slip.
The parcel - I love the personal touch!
A closer look of the dress - the neckline and sleeve
The pattern - fern-like leaves
I could not wait to wear this lovely dress for one or two twirls around the city. But before that, one question has been answered though - to rehem or not to rehem? What would you do if you were in my shoes? I would like to hear your thoughts!