Archive for the ‘Vintage’ Category

Fall 2009 Fashion Guide

August 20, 2009

Must Have Items:

  • Big Leather Tote
  • Neon Jewelry
  • Long Boots
  • Vintage Little Black Dress
  • Neutral Overcoat
  • Leather Jacket
  • Acid wash jeans

What’s big this season? 
Layers! The look this season is all about topping on those accessories to create a fresh, sophisticated look.  Start with a long tank or tee, top it with a hipster blazer, throw on some eye-popping jewelry with a headband and you’ll look on-the-go stylish. 

What’s one item everyone must have? 
A pair of boots.  Leather or suede, the material doesn’t matter; neither does the style.  Boots with buckles and layers include much of what this season’s look is all about.  In a perfect world, I’d recommend you have a pair of scrunched black suede boots to wear on a trendy night out on the town, and a pair of brown leather boots to wear for a simple daytime look. Boots can make an outfit happen. 

What should you keep in the closet? 
This season, I’d keep those UGG boots everyone has in the closet.  The new vintage trend is all about individuality and expressing oneself.  If you want to follow these fall trends, you need to dig a little deeper and search harder for what’s out there.  Instead of going to the same department store every year for clothes and shoes, try going to a thrift store – you never know what you may find. 

What is the inspiration of the fall 2009 trends? 
I think a lot of the fall 2009 trends are vintaged inspired.  Trends seem to be going for a casual, edgy look, which vintage is completely capable of.  However, it does depend on your style.  Here are a few chic trends I’ll elaborate on, so choose which fits your personality the best:

Edgy Biker Chic: Acid washed or dark skinny jeans, paired with a graphic tee and layered with a leather jacket. This look is vintage inspired from the 70s for a free spirited soul with lots of charisma. 

Edgy Biker Chic- Rachel Bilson

Log Cabin Chic:  This look is designed for anyone looking for a down-to-earth, laid back style this fall.  Plaid shirts, boyfriend jeans, and a pair of retro sneakers and a bandana will make this outfit have a personality of its own. 

Log Cabin Chic- Kristen Stewart

Girly Chic: Colors, ruffles, pleated skirts- this 50s inspired look is simply adorable.  Find a pleated skirt and pair it with black tights, a ruffled moth-colored top and a headband and it’ll look cute and attention seeking for all the right reasons. 

Girly Chic- Blair Waldorf (Leighton Meester)

So if you haven’t already, get started on shopping for this season’s trends.  Don’t forget to start in your closet.

Why Vintage?

August 20, 2009


While our customers know that vintage = a one of a kind link to the past and to current trends, we do tend to get this question a lot. Shrimpton Couture explains:

Vintage fashion is a strange landscape. Depending on the current trend, usually defined by who is wearing what, vintage is either flaunted as being hip and up to the minute (isn’t that ironic!) or it’s quiet and below the surface without fan fare. But it’s always there.

Die-hard vintage girls like me buy and wear vintage with little regard for what the current trends happen to be. There are tons of girls out there who are active hunters for vintage treasures regardless of the current cool factor. But I am also surprised at how many people I meet who know nothing about vintage, the designers, the labels, and these people are often in the fashion industry. Where have they been?

I actually find people can be dismissive of fashion in general and I know that any of you who are reading this and work in this industry know of what I speak. I know you have had those same blank looks thrown at you when you say you are in fashion. It’s an industry associated with frippery and youth, rather then what is has really become, which is an industry of public companies and exchanges; profit and loss statements and very, very valuable clothing in certain sectors of it. Though vintage has perhaps not gone the route of becoming a publicly traded venture, trust me when I say that in certain parts of it, the clothes are also very, very, valuable.

So if their is a moral in today’s column its that despite what anyone else thinks or their reaction to it, you just have to forge ahead and do what you love, even if it seems to go against the norm, even if it’s just a little niche of a thing to do, even if people think you are odd. I am the first to admit it’s a strange little world I inhabit but its one that I would not give up even if every person I met from here on in thought me odd. In fact, it might even inspire me to tell you a great truth – that don’t you find the people who don’t quite fit in are usually the most compelling?

While we disagree that vintage fashionistas must ignore current trends, Shrimpton Couture sums up our fahion philosophy rather well: unless you want a cookie-cutter look, vintage is the only way to go.

“Just Take Off My Red Shoes, Put Them On and Your Dream’ll Come True”

August 18, 2009

Every weekday morning, I walk by the dog run in Madison Square Park on the way to the subway.  Sometimes I see office workers from the nearby financial firms practicing tai chi, sometimes I see a man walking his cat, and sometimes I see country music bands setting up for a mid-morning concert.  But I was unprepared for the chihuahua and his red running sneakers.

The pup and his owner ran by too fast for me to whip out my camera, but I think I’ve located the source of his sneakers.  They looked sort of like this:

Now, I realize that dogs have been wearing shoes since at least Legally Blonde.  Especially in New York, this is none too shocking.  However, seeing red running shoes on a speeding canine confirmed a suspicion I’ve had ever since I started noticing flocks of really well-groomed men strolling in Central Park with bright red sneakers.  Most similar to the amazing dog sneakers?  This pair of Prada running shoes, made for the America’s Cup:

Prada running shoes

At a moment when the recession seems like it might never be over, florescent red shoes lighten the mood of even the most jaded Manhattanite.  With more muted colors for fall, red shoes are the ideal way to add a punch of color to a staid outfit, and to remember that even when the economy is tanking, we can still have fun.

For those without a Prada-sized budget or an adorable puppy with delicate feet, I found these great red wedges and two-toned pointy heels at Avant Gaudy: 

Lipstick, $58Spades, $48

Title from “The Red Shoes” by Kate Bush.

Fall Trend Alert: Velvet!

August 15, 2009

by Anika

Yes. Velvet is coming back this fall and it’s no longer reserved for girls under the age of 12.  Use velvet in your wardrobe to create sophisticated looks that are classic and feminine with a hint of toughness.  The runway was full of this luxurious fabric this season with dresses, blazers, and even pants from designers such as Marc Jacobs, Fendi, Armani, DVF and more.

Velvet on the runways

Can’t afford designer prices?  Try these vintage pieces from Avant Gaudy.

Velvet at Avant Gaudy

Style Tips: Be careful not to overkill the trend by wearing too much.  One statement piece of velvet is enough for an outfit.  Try a velvet blazer over skinny jeans and a sheer romantic blouse under to avoid feeling stuffy.  Try a shorter jacket over a frilly dress to add a bit of edge.  A velvet dress with a pair of heels makes for perfect evening attire.


You know what my favorite kind of velvet is? RED VELVET CAKE! SO good.  Here’s an awesome recipe from

red velvet cake

Vintage Vegan

August 14, 2009

Hey guys! My name is Mary. I recently graduated from Northwestern University, and although the school isn’t known at all for any kind of fashion studies, I tried to do the best I could at taking classes related to fashion and style. I have a deep love for fashion, but the industry often collides with some of my values. I’ve been a dietary vegan for over two years now, and over the past couple of months, I’ve been transitioning to a much more vegan lifestyle overall. This means no more leather, no more wool, no more silk.

Mary's picWell, I’m not into that frumpy, granola look that is usually associated with vegans. Many other vegans are not either, and believe it or not, there is a place in fashion for vegans. As the population of vegans grows, so does the demand for stylish vegan clothing. Stella McCartney is probably the leader in vegan fashion, and there are other celebrities, like Natalie Portman, who have also put out cool vegan lines.

But there is another way to dress vegan without having to be sure of the materials used to make a garment. You guessed it: vintage fashion. While there is some debate among vegans about used clothing made from animal products, I think it’s okay because you’re supporting an industry that doesn’t ask for new clothing to be made, including clothes made from animal products. Vintage fashion is also great because it’s eco-friendly, a value that is important to many vegans, including myself.

For these reasons, I am getting more and more into vintage fashion, and I am very excited to start writing for Avant Gaudy!

Check Her Out: Saved for Best

August 13, 2009

AliceThere are dozens, if not hundreds of  popular personal style blogs online right now, with constant updates from “hipsters” talking about and showing off their favorite designer clothes and vintage finds.  Well, here’s another one to add to the list that’s different that we think you should take a look at.  UK blogger Alice just recently started her own style blog, Saved for Best, featuring daily photos of her unique outfits and a recent review of Avant Gaudy! Each day, Alice gives her readers a glimpse at her outfit for the day and a little story behind it.  Most of her favorite pieces are unique vintage finds, and she even reconstructs some of her own clothing.

Here’s how Alice describes her own unique style:

The problem, if you could ever call it that, is that my eyes are always drawn to a pattern, a colour, a cut, a cloth and sometimes clothes that are just downright funny-looking. I’m a spontaneous shopper; I take no pleasure in searching for the ‘perfect’ anything. I want glitter and glamour, flowers and frills, lace and luxury and I want it now. Hence a wardrobe heaving with sequins, netting, vintage dresses, giddy patterns, scarves, bags and shoes of all styles, yet nothing that makes any kind of concession to practicality or befits a specific occasion – unless that occasion calls for fancy dress.

Here’s a quick look at some of our favorite outfits from this month so far. 

Alice, August 3

Alice, August 9

Alice, August 11

Be sure to check out Saved for Best  for Alice’s daily style posts.

Fashion Spoons, Cooked Two Different Ways

August 8, 2009

Check out this neat spoon collection by designer Jurgen Lehl.

Who is Lehl, you might ask? Gius  from The Fashion Spot says that aside from fashion, Lehl also “designs various items ranging from furniture and tableware to jewelry, [who] above all else …tries not to create ‘unnecessary or useless things.'”

Liehl adds, “I don’t want to make things which will harm nature or be environmentally unfriendly. As far as I create things, I try to make things that will last for a long time.”

That’s what we say about vintage. Fantastic, Lehl.

On a mostly unrelated note, here is a great photoshoot titled “Spoon”
by Kristian Schuller:

Get the Look: Bust Out the Blazer

August 6, 2009

At Avant Gaudy we firmly believe you can reinvent your style without restocking your closet.  Here’s how you can turn that classic blazer into a fresh new look.

Inspiration: Louis Vuitton Fall 2009 Trends

Avant Gaudy Collection: Material Girl Bra & Back to Basics Blazer

How to Style It: Pair a lacy brassiere with your favorite blazer for an instant masculine/feminine mash-up.  Button up the blazer for a confident and sexy look.  Plunge it open for the after party.

Price: Material Girl Bra $48.00 & Back to Basics Blazer $45.00

I showed you mine, now you show me yours. Tell me about your favorite way to make an old piece look new again!

Alter Ego

August 3, 2009

In the realm of thrifting, there is some God-awful, ugly stuff. 

Take this dress for instance: A long sleeved, froofy, suffocating monstrosity made all the more ridiculous in an eye-damagingly bright, red.  As my dear mother would say, the number was in fact, “uglier than sin.” 

Not surprisingly, the price tag read ten cents. 

The stop-sign red hue of the “Christmas Day Nightgown” (as my colleagues fondly christened it), serving as a blatant forewarning for naïve bargain hunters, was not enough to hinder this blogger.  My retail salivary glands were working at the rapidity of a rabid canine.  Ten cents, why I can find a dime in the dirt! What a deal!  With a spring in my step, I handed a quarter over to the cashier.  Upon arrival at my apartment, the dress looked even uglier than I had remembered it.  As always, every cloud has a silver (er…in this case, stuffy polyester) lining.  This thing just needed a little TLC. 


Now, most folks are frightened of the term “sewing.”  To them, it may conjure up ghastly recollections from 7th grade Home Ec class projects gone awry.  It signifies that “Vogue Patterns” instruction booklet and a ball of discount fabric from Jo-Anns sitting forlornly in the back of a closet in a heap of frumpy defeat.   Not to fear, though.  If I can do it, you (with utmost certainty) can do it with ease! 

Snip Snip

I simply chopped off the arms, hacked off a foot and a half of  hem length, folded the hem over, ironed it, and stitched it up in order to avoid fraying.   

Extreme Make-Over

Voila–A cute frock for pennies!  Pretty nifty thrifty, huh?

If Angela Martin Wore Vintage

July 31, 2009

I admit I’m a little bit late on talking about the Emmy nominations, as they were announced over two weeks ago, but hey, we’ve been busy with the new website here at Avant Gaudy! I’m happy I finally have some time to say congratulations to my favorite show on the air right now—The Office—for 10 Emmy nominations!

I only started watching The Office after it had finished its fourth season. I saw a few episodes and became hooked! Now, I’m such a big fan of that show that my cell phone rings the theme song, and I try to incorporate “that’s what she said” jokes as often as possible into my everyday life. So naturally, I would bring my slight obsession into work.

Angela MartinShortly after reading the list of nominations, I was on the Avant Gaudy website checking out newly listed blouses. That’s when I suddenly felt as though I had seen these looks somewhere before…

Angela Kinsey plays the prissy and up-tight head accountant on The Office, Angela Martin. On the show, Angela has a style that most would consider to be conservative and safe. If only she knew that she could still be lady-like, yet fashionable and modern with some of our great vintage pieces!

Angela Collage