Saturday 13 December 2014

I've got the brains, you've got the looks - let's make lots of money

Brrr, it's cold. My coats and hats are on rotation, and you may not see a denim jacket again on this blog till Spring. 

I know winter has truly arrived when it's too chilly for a denim jacket. 

I'm road-testing this 1960s coat, but it may not be destined to stay in my wardrobe.

As much as I like it, there is something off about the proportions.

Perhaps it's that halfway house/car coat length; I look as though I'm wearing a child's coat. In fact, the whole outfit feels like something I would have worn when I started school on 1968. 

And I'm not sure what I think about that.

Wonderful label though!

1960s Horrockses wool coat, 1960s St Michael skirt, 1950s mohair scarf, 1980s Japelle bag, and everything else apart from the boots - charity shopped

Wednesdays are fast becoming my favourite day.  

The couple who donated the vintage fabrics and clothes last week came back with an epic load of clothing and linens. I persuaded the manager to let me price some up and put them out in the shop, and two 1960s jackets sold within minutes. Everything looked a bit smarter after a going over with the steaming machine, and I deliberately priced the stock very reasonably in the hope that it would sell and therefore prove the point that there is a market for vintage. (And then I tipped off a friend to go and look, and she bought several pieces.)

So I am optimistic that all this manoeuvring means that the shop will develop a vintage rail, and if I can be in charge of it, so much the better.

In addition, look what will be heading for Ebay this week;

Early/mid 1960s jackets, coats, dresses and a suit...

1970s tweed waistcoats, dresses, and a maxi skirt with tags...

early 1960s lace and knitwear.

And a late 1970s panne velvet dress by Mary Quant. I assume it is from a range she did for a catalogue, so sadly it doesn't have the value of her earlier designs. And it's something of an oddity amongst the more classic styles of the other donations, but maybe the lady who collected all these treasures had a disco moment. Good for her.

The couple are coming back next week with more. The manager specifically requested they bring their donations on Wednesday as I will be there to sort them (no one else wants to) and I am overjoyed. I know the volunteers are amused by all of this, and by me, but there is a business point to be made here; vintage sells. The charity is missing out on much-needed revenue if they overlook this. 

So - my plan is to sell the above stock on Ebay and give the proceeds to the shop (minus my fees). It's for the greater good. And of course I will have the opportunity to buy for myself along the way. 

Like the red Horrockses coat. Although I think I've changed my mind and that can be sold too.

If you are interested in any of the pieces here, email me and I'll give you the details and my Ebay seller ID. I'll be listing this little lot either today or tomorrow, but if anyone is keen to buy, get in early for a price and I'll happily sell direct to keep the fees down. Everything is a wee bit musty and needs a good airing, but I've washed what I can, and there are some great labels.

What were the chances that I would start to volunteer at the charity shop just as this lady's house was being cleared by her relatives? If they had brought in all these donations before I started, or on another day, everything would have ended up in the rag bag. 

Sometimes the universe moves in wonderfully fitting ways. 

Classic 1960s English-made heritage label wool coat for sale - make me an offer. It's all for charidee, folks!

I'll be showing my wares over at Patti's for Visible Monday.

Have a great weekend. xxx


Emma Kate at Paint and Style said...

Ooh, what's the English Lady one? The button dow dress? What size please? xxxx

Vintage Bird Girl said...

Well everyone is winning now that you're working at the op shop. It must be rather tempting to bring loads of stuff home. Some great labels there for sure. I love you all matchy matchy in red, white and blue. Xx

Emma Kate at Paint and Style said...

Steaming is such fun, it really makes things look new again.
I think there's a way you can sell on Ebay without faffing about, working out fees etc. All you need is the charity to register with them and you can start. I'm not sure if they have less or no fees. Worth looking into.
I really like your little red coat. You look very sophisticated in it. No hint of a 60's school girl! I think it's be beret again working it's French magic. xxxx

Bobbi said...

I love the Mary Quant and that black and white stripe! Too bad I'm broke and chubby. I's so cool that you're the vintage pro at the charity shop.
Keep warm!

Ivy Black said...

That coat is a blinder, darling! I know what you're saying about it and if you don't love it, someone else will. A Horrockses coat? Someone will snaffle that no probs.
It so cold I've had to slap the woolly hats on...not all of them at the same time because that would be a bit mad. I put one on this morning and was channelling Mrs Doyle to go dog walking. Fab!
It won't be long before you are running the vintage section at your chazza. They'll be pouring in the door.
have a lovely weekend.
Loves ya.

Debberoo said...

I love the red coat it looks fab with the stripes.

OMG that is so awesome about the shop stuff. You are their official "President of Vintage Dept" Go you!

Kezzie said...

Well done you!!! You have some cracking pieces there and I'm definitely a bit interested in the black collared dress with the stripy tie bit, though what is it made out of and size and washing instructions-I don't have your email address, where can I find it please? X

mondoagogo said...

Good news on the clothing rescue -- all those pieces look pretty good to me! Judging from the comments on your last post, I don't think a lot of people realise that stuff ending up in a rag bag doesn't automatically = landfill. Rag bags get recycled in lots of other ways, so a rag bag is still a better option than just binning them. Though of course, if the stuff is this kind of quality it's obviously nicer if they don't get recycled!

The coat is a great colour on you, but yeah, the proportions do look a bit off, like it should either be a couple of inches longer or a couple of inches shorter.

Patti said...

You go, you! Now managing the Vintage Department, and doing good for the world. Lovely pieces too. xox

Porcelina said...

The 60s lace top, what size and how much please?

I'm so pleased that the shop is starting to see the light in terms of the potential of vintage, that's greaat that the two jackets sold so fast, really helped prove your point! I love the colours in your outfit here, and the coat is very cute but I see what you mean about proportions, it's a bit short and long at the same time!


Fiona said...

I think the red Horrockses coat is lovely on you but if you're not loving it...I'd make an offer myself but my coat cupboard is bursting as it is...bloody uniform doesn't help. Now the waistcoats are a different on the way. I can see that your arrival at the chazza will herald a whole new type of shopper, sounds like you have already been appointed Mistress of the Vintage Rails.
What fun. xxxxx

Goody said...

I went through primary school in a red woolen coat that I hated. I had the New World version in the form of a Hudson's Bay blanket coat. Yours would have been much nicer. Anyway, yes that length is difficult to wear, but perhaps someone of shorter stature will be able to give it a good home (not me, sadly as the childhood trauma of being taunted daily with, "The Redcoats are coming!" still has not healed).

I'm glad you worked out a way to deal with both the vintage stock, and your conscience.

Your collection of hats is inspiring me. I love this knit one-though the sparkly one is pretty impressive as well. I have a couple, but they just look like I stuffed my hair in a hat, whereas you look so perfectly styled in yours.

Mother of Reinvention said...

What fab labels, especially the Horrockses. That should get a good sum on eBay. What am amazing find. All those dresses are fab. I love the red and white one. Just need a Santa hat and it would look very festive. So nice of you to organise this or the shop. Xxxx

Lizzie Cole said...

I love the red, white and blue look you've gone for.

Lizzie's Daily Blog

Suzanne said...

What is the size on that rust sweater? Also what is it made out of?

I like your idea to sell these for them.

I agree with you about the red coat. You can do better.


Unknown said...

That's a big move forwards, good for you and good for them too for taking you up on it. It would be interesting to see if over time they pick up some tips and start to do the pricing themselves. Would love to have a look at your ebay page.

Connie said...

The cream does most definitely rise to the top! I just KNEW that the folks at the shop would notice that you are a Star! You look like an adorable school girl in your pleats and coat. We used to call those car coats. Now you just need to hone your psychic clothes reading skills!

Natalia Lialina said...

Yippeeeee!!! I am so happy for you. It's the law of attraction as they say. :) I want to move to England and go charity shopping with you and find such gems! :)

I know that if you don't feel fabulous as dear Vix says, then it's not worth wearing it. It's just so effective when it comes to decision about clothes, isn't it? But maybe this coat deserves a second chance. I can see it with more "grown up" pieces like elegant trousers - you have some, right? Will you give them a try for me? I just would like to test my theory. I think it would look chic and informal all at the same time. I would also wear them with jeans, but I know that you don't have any. I guess I'm trying to say that I love this coat on you, Curtise. :) xxxxx

at my dressingtable said...

Hello Curtise , I like the red coat and I think it suits you ! have a good weekend xxx

Becky said...

Thank goodness you were there to save that vintage haul! I think the red & white dress is adorable.
You look great and I love the coat, but I understand about the length thing. I'm very weird about jacket lengths and I hate anything that stops at my hips.

Helga said...

I love that coat, it works a treat with that divoon frock! But as we know, Vix' Rule states...!!!! I reckon it is the length, it will only work with certain things. But that's not so bad....
Jaysus YES I am so happy you are at that chazza to save all those goodies from the rag bag! Jeez those ladies need some educating!What has gone before doesn't bear thinking about....I just fantasise about coming across a mother load like that to go through, only EVERYTHING fits me perfectly and is fanTASMO! Bahahahaaaaaaaaaaaa.
I think we can call you Vintage Rescue?! Thank goodness you're out there, doing the hard yards!

thorne garnet said...

bless your heart for doing that for the charity shop. They didn't know what they were tossing out.

Unknown said...

If I had the money, I'd buy that coat off you! But I really think you look great in it to be honest! Keep up the good work at your shop! :)

Beth Waltz said...

Serendipity! The mother load unloaded just as you come on board -- and determined to do the right thing for anyone even close to the situation! Bless you, Curtise: may your generous donations of time and cash be returned ten-fold!

Hmm. Y'know that red coat fits that striped dress as 'tho made for it. What else have you got that works so well as the red coat? But if you don't like it...

Angels have Red Hair said...

You were born for that job and before long they'll be wondering what they ever did without you :0)

Sue said...

I have always thought things happen for a reason and your timing with your charity work has been perfect. Good for you!!!

Melanie said...

I'm so happy that you've found a win-win-win situation for you, these vintage finds, and your shop! Brilliant.
I'm sure all these pieces will find excellent homes.

Anonymous said...

Hi Curtise! I love what you said on my blog about dressing for the wedding. I couldn't have put it in better words myself. On top of all that my ex husband and his wife will be there and I want to look better than her. haha! I'm so vain!
I really do love the red jacket you're wearing here. I love wearing short over long right now. And the red white and blue is definitely my era in elementary school too. But I've tried styles that don't feel right too and they immediately go into the give-away pile.
I'm thrilled you're enjoying your volunteer position and you're the perfect person to manage the vintage rail!!

freckleface said...

I've decided it's too cold to get out of bed today, so I am conducting my affairs from The Big Bed HQ. Wow, Curtise, you are clearly a woman with the entire set of skills needed to set up and run your own business! Failing that, I can just see you running a charity shop or any other in fact, in the fullness of time. What an amazing insight into the life of one woman. She had some great clothes. I fancy the tweed waistcoat on the left, is it P-T-T sized? At this rate you could clothe us all! In the meantime you do a great job of putting together an outfit in your own inimitable way. I'm a fan of the red coat, I rather like that halfway length, it allows for striding in a purposeful way, but we all know Vix's rule it seems!! Xxxxxxx

Virginia at A Sewing Life said...

Well, I salute your charity-mindedness, though I'm not at all sure I could be so selfless! Taking that many illustrative and appealing photos of clothing is NOT child's play.

Your enthusiasm for these pieces is so infectious! You really do have a gift for seeing the potential in wadded-up, musty old bits. Love that red dress that buttons up the front.

bahnwärterin said...

the shop never had a better volunteer!
you´r doing that very well!
and with all the gorgeous fake furs your don´t need the red coat at all :-)

Peaches McGinty said...

Well done, it's a blindingly brilliant idea, now I just need to set myself up with a new ebay ID and paypal (I was spectacularly hacked ages ago, put me right off) isn't it funny how things work out though? having a vintage rail would be a fantastic addition to any charity shop, you could be the driving force for a new approach with chazzing with 'the vintage rail' in all shops!!*breathe*
I love your outfit btw!! x x x

Mrs Bertimus said...

You are a tour de force !
A champion of the vintage label!
For that I salute you!
And, as always, you look utterly fab x

Asparagus Pea said...

Do it, do it ,do it. They need you but they just don't know why

Sheila said...

What a wonderful solution! You will quickly become the star of the store - it will be a vintage boutique raking in scads of dough before you know it.

You look fabulous as always!

Vix said...

Loving the red, white and blue combo, very Helga-esque, which is a great thing in my book! The coat looks fabulous, it is a departure from your usual length but a good one.
Great solution with the clothes, you'll be getting top dollar from those beautifully preserved items and the manager won't have her precious shop cluttered up with "old clothes" - a win win situation!
I can just imagine the previous owner of those clothes, a lady who went to the hairdressers once a week for a shampoo and set and blow dry and worked in the office accounts dept. Smart & neat with an eye for quality.
Yeah, some of that Freemans Mary Quant stuff was shocking. That dress is one of the better items!
Love you! xxxxx

Miss Magpie said...

What a brilliant idea. I do hope the shop comes round to your way of thinking very soon.

I love the little green jacket and the red dress with the white collar but I'm guessing they are all teeny tiny right?

Jessica Jannenga said...

Great idea! Lots of great styles there as well. I really like the red jacket on you with the colorful skirt. Hope you are enjoying the season
from the link up
please stop by, jess xx

The Style Crone said...

How exciting that you're developing a vintage department in the charity shop! Brilliant. You look fabulous as usual, and love the Mary Quant dress

Jill James said...

You are the perfect person to run the vintage section, hope the charity sees the light.
If the red coat does not feel right,
maybe it needs another home.

Unknown said...

I'm so glad that the vintage beauties are saved by you and you are selling it on E-Bay ,what a great idea you got there! - Nice selection of clothes, i love the 70s white and orange dress and love the cute Mary Quant dress


Jazzy Jack said...

Hip hip hooray! You found a solution! The manager has seen sense. It makes me gasp to think of the goodies that are thrown out due to lack of connections and knowledge. Hopefully you can help turn this around. Well done!
I think you look perfectly fine in your red coat, but you have to feel it! I know I feel like my Mum in some clothes that are OK or even smart, so out they go. Do what feels best. That's what clothes are all about...expression! Oh, and a little bit for comfort :-) xo JJ

Unknown said...

I'm so happy you are in you element at the shop! I know you lend an expertise and enthusiasm that is worth a lot to all concerned! Such cool pieces! All beauties, as are you in your brights here!
My first thought was how neat the jacket is on your figure, but I see your concerns. Fits you like a glove, but if you wore pants, I think you'd find the proportions perfect ... might the proportions only be problematic with a dress ? That is, indeed, a problem with your wardrobe. Maybe with a shorter, closer fit skirt?
The minute you open it, though, it works dandy! Love that red on you, lady, so I hope you keep it and let it play with some of your other pieces.
So glad you're rocking the holiday season with so much more enthusiasm and pleasure than last year!

kobieta niewidzialna said...

This dress from Mary Quant is magic. :)

Melanie said...

Huzzaah for saving all these lovely items! I like the red coat but if you're not happy with how it looks on you, then I understand moving it on xxx

Forest City Fashionista said...

The fates aligned to put you in that Charity shop at the right time. I'm so glad you are having fun with this, and obviously both you and the shop are benefiting from the experience. I agree, the red coat does have rather peculiar proportions. I am very drawn to the black and white striped dress, and that shades of green sweater - I will go look at your Ebay page for more details.

The Vintage Knitter said...

Wow! There's some lovely clothes there - fancy that they would have all been binned if you weren't there to save them! Good going. I love the label collage too - sometimes the label designs are better than the clothes themselves!

Trees said...

I love that coat on you - I think its just lovely! I can't believe all that stuff was destined for the rag bag - I LOVE it all, but especially that black frock with the white necktie. I think you were MEANT to have this job to save the pretties!