A little Vintage Guide

Okie dokie everyone. We know how fun it is to go vintage shopping. It’s like going on a treasure hunt where you’re not quite sure what you’re looking for and not quite sure what you will return with(or how much money you’re going to spend!)
So In order to get the best retro gear – I have a few tips to share so here goes..
First of all – know your measurements! that’s hips, waist, bust measure everything and keep those with you while shopping. Back in the day people were generally shorter and skinnier than we are now so do your best to ‘try before you buy’ as a size 10 in 1960 could be alot different to a size 10 we have today.
Keep you’re eyes peeled for details – patterns ,buttons, trims, linings, hand sewing, piped seams. These will all be tell-tale signs of good construction. Do a little bit of research and over time you will be able to tell which styles come from which periods!
when it comes to taking care of vintage I always say the safest way to clean is to handwash otherwise if its made from a sturdy enough fabric you may be able to put it on a gentle machine wash. Hang on padded hangers, keep them out of sunlight and treat them with love and care – they are old after all.
Lastly,(this is only a quick guide after all) Look for textiles that still have strength and integrity and garments that are in good repair, without any difficult or iffy mending to be done. Look for clean clothing that smells good and isn’t heavily worn. Mint condition is extremely rare for any antique; frankly it’s rare for any period of vintage clothing. So happy shopping everyone! x Bj

If you are looking for a little inspiration from the comfort of your own couch take a peek at our very own vintage selection: we’ve done the hard work so you won’t have to!



Cosy and Cute!

The winter dress.

It almost sounds like an oxymoron, but this little beauty is fast becoming the cornerstone of our cold season wardrobes. Once upon a time it was customary to pack up and store all our pretty dresses in the attic when September rolled around (well isn’t that why we bought all those storage boxes in Ikea?) and dig out the jumpers and jeans. No more we say. We are no longer willing to hide our legs away for 6 long months.

But we’re not saying we want to get frostbite waiting for the 46A either! So what’s a girl to do? Choose between looking fashionable and being comfortable? No way!

Fleece cowl neck circle dressFleece pink cowl neck long sleeved dressFleece cat print dress with button detailHigh neck dress keyhole neckline detail

Enter the winter dress: it is warm and cosy, but still cute and eye-catching. And with a dress that’s so colourful and fun the rest of your outfit can be oh-so simple. Just add thick tights or leggings and a pair of go-anywhere leather boots. Layer a t-shirt or thin knit sweater underneath on those really chilly days. Plus your classic black coat will look perfect over any of these pieces. As for accessories, it’s chic and minimal all the way to really let that dress shine.    So it’s goodbye jeans everyday and hello gorgeous, practical dresses. We’re sorry we ever doubted you.

Outfit planning this simple may even make getting out of bed on those dark mornings that little bit easier… (well maybe not).

Multicoloured heart print cowl neck dressFleece short sleeve bubble dot dressFleece scoop neck empire line dressOwl print cowl neck fleece dress

Check out all these winter dresses and more here:  http://www.ilovecarousel.com/dresses/casual-dresses.html

Fresher Week Fashion

Freshers week is upon us once again. For the uninitiated, this is week of joining societies you will never ever participate in (Shinkendo? Really?), free shots, realising just how comfortable your mattress at home was, and officially being orientated as a first year college student.

With so many new faces to meet and detail your leaving cert results to (yes people really will ask) this week also turns into something of a fashion parade, if not a friendship abattoir. A chance for the weak to be weeded out and avoided for the rest of the year. To this end we would like to provide some friendly guidelines for what to wear during this auspicious week.

Bags: Once upon a time all you needed to be cool was a pink schoolbag featuring a Disney character. How times have changed. Let’s be real: a sensible backpack will make you look like a loser (unless it’s of the small, leather variety). You will want a normal (gorgeous) handbag that will just barely hold a notebook and one, maybe two, pens. If you are the type that intends to actually turn up to class during the year you will want something in a satchel. To hold that third biro. NB: That laptop bag your mother insisted on buying? Throw it away, immediately.

Vintage Dresses: The uniform of cool college students. As someone who spent those four years eating pasta and pesto, I can attest that the benefits of buying secondhand clothes cannot be underestimated. Effortlessly cool, completely unique and much cheaper than high street (plus you never run the risk of wearing exactly the same outfit as the rest of your tutorial).                                                                                                          Furthermore, though Taylor Swift once sang ” No amount of vintage dresses gives you dignity”, I beg to differ. Who exactly is going to look more dignified doing the walk of shame on Friday morning: the girl still wearing 6 inch heels and a bodycon mini dress in ‘Intro to Linguistics’  or the girl in cute printed vintage? I rest my case.

Accessories: Those of you coming back from a gap year, please don’t try and rub it in people’s faces. If you’ve done it right you’ll have an air of the exotic about you anyway, okay? No braids, no dreads, no harem pants. Yes to silk pashminas, indian leather, restrained amounts of beads. Subtlety is key. There’s a hipster backlash happening or hadn’t you heard? Also: shades are your new best friend. You are about to experience hangovers as you’ve never felt them before. Remember that exotic air we talked about? Wearing shades in lectures= two birds, one stone.

And so to research via the silver screen. The college movie tradition is a little light on inspiring female fashion- Animal House, Old School, Van Wilder? No thanks! Pretty sure the only prerequisite was that Tara Reid had to wear as few clothes as possible, or at least cover those clothes in mud. There are certainly diamonds in the rough however.

You may not get away with an entirely pink wardrobe like Elle in Legally Blonde, but she gets an A for enthusiasm, attitude and pussy bow necklines. And as for that wagon who keeps stealing your weetabix? Kill her with kindness, the Reese Witherspoon way.

Rooney Mara may have only had a bit part in The Social Network but this is exemplary stuff. Keep your makeup look natural for day, too much make up says try-hard.                 A fair isle sweater and pea coat will keep you cosy in those invariably drafty college canteens. Also drinking outdoors: a big deal in college.

The Mono Lisa Smile look may not be one to break out during freshers week but keep it in your back pocket come ball season? Also champagne, always champagne.

Best of luck freshers! And remember a smile is the best way to make friends in college. That, or having your own car.

Satchels: http://www.ilovecarousel.com/accessories/bags.html

Vintage Dresses: http://www.ilovecarousel.com/dresses/vintage-dresses.html

Sunglasses: http://www.ilovecarousel.com/accessories/sunglasses.html