Stylish at Work

Vintage Style

Dresses, Style AdviceSanam Khamneipur SmithComment

Although you wouldn't know it from looking at how I dress these days, especially to work, people who know me from way back when (think high school) probably remember clearly all the vintage duds I sported on a daily basis. 

From Hawaiian Muu Muu type dresses, to velvety bell bottoms snatched from a relative's closet (who actually wore them during the 70's), to hippie-ish floral print dresses made in India that I bought at some vintage shop in L.A. (oh how I wish I had kept some of those beautiful articles of clothing – if only Marie Kondo's book The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up was around then, exhorting me to keep things that spark joy – read my post on her here), but I digress... basically what I was saying is that vintage clothes used to be my jam. 

I was reminded of this fact recently when I was going through my mom's closet. She had the best clothes in the 80's - heck she still does! The other day, while searching through her closet, I happened to find a gem of a mini-houndstooth suit that happened to fit me just like a glove. Perfect for work, and super stylish. She'd been planning to toss or give it away because she thought it was out-of-date. After trying it on I said "No way, this is mine!" and "The 80's are back in style."

Long story short, I'm reconnecting with this former passion and hobby of mine, by sharing some of my favorite L.A. vintage shops discovered throughout my years living here. I found this pretty Hawaiian inspired number at Pattye's Closet in Highland Park. A few other vintage shops I love:

Decades on Melrose Avenue is the best for beautiful vintage gowns or cocktail dresses, for those times where you want something really special and unique to wear to an event (wedding season anyone?)

Gotta Have It in Venice is perfect for finding that cool Navajo style jacket you've been wanting, that vintage-y leather jacket, or a hippie style floral top.

Wasteland in Santa Monica near the Third Street Promenade is a treasure trove of unique finds, whether vintage t-shirts, flannels, or designer duds like a Marni or Prada top. They also buy clothes on the regular and I've successfully sold lots of my stylish designer items here.

Finally, Hidden Treasures in Topanga Canyon is a little hidden gem of wonder and magical-ness. The store looks like a pirate ship crossed with a mermaid's land-based home in a fairy-tale, and is full of fun vintage finds. Plus if you go there, you can make it into a fun day of hiking and eating in this beautiful hidden part of Los Angeles.

There are also a plethora of vintage or consignment shops now online selling things like designer handbags, shoes and clothes, and of course there's always eBay. For me though, there's always something magical about stepping back into time by trying on clothes from another era in person.

Are there any vintage styles you love, that are back in fashion? Do you have any vintage shops you love, wherever you live? Would love to know about them!