Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Spring Lust

It seems like all the women of Manhattan rejoiced at the sunny weather and humid heat today, because everyone had on their very best things for spring! I on the other hand got up late and had no idea what to wear so I haphazardly put together an unadventurous outfit not anywhere near worth a picture. However, I feel really inspired by the weather to try some new things... these are some of the trends I want to try and items I have been drooling over recently:


Some round glasses that I found on Billie Jean's blog


A beautiful liberty print floral skirt by Cacharel that you can buy here


Ok, I know I am not as cool as Chloe Sevigny but I would TOTALLY wear socks with sandals (maybe some with lace at the ankles) and now that she's done it I can too!

I think all of these looks put together would be really great. Once I hunt similar pieces in my price range and get some ankle socks, I will follow up with a post!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

My First Customer Appreciation Photo!

I recently sold a fabulous little latte colored, orlon acrylic sweater from the 50's to a very friendly customer named Tracy on Etsy. She was very excited to get the sweater, and I asked her to send me pictures of her wearing it. I was so happy when I got these pictures from her this weekend:

• top: 50s pale tan acrylic tie-neck sweater, bought at TheGreedySeagull.etsy.com

• pants: 80s pine green cotton/poly slacks, bought at RustyZipper.com

• vest: cross dyed ash/gold vest with metal buttons (unknown vintage--tag looks 60s-ish), bought at RustyZipper.com

• hat: 80s khaki cotton safari hat, gift from mother

• brooch (on hat): modern assemblage with a couple of 40s and 50s components, bought at PinkFlamingo60.etsy.com

• scarf: modern leopard print rayon scarf (2008)

• skirt: brown cottony blend skirt (unknown vintage--possibly a 70s reproduction of a 50s style), bought at RustyZipper.com

• ring (on right): 40s diamond heirloom ring, gift from grandfather

• boots: modern Isabella Fiore Greenland pirate boots with silkscreened pirate skull (2006)

I am so in love with the way she styled it! What a great idea to put it with a vest... and those boots are killer. Thanks so much Tracy- that sweater was meant for you and you are adorable!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Moll Flanders, by Daniel Defoe

I just finished up a wonderful book written in 1683 by the prolific and controversial English writer Daniel Defoe, who is best known for Robinson Crusoe. Moll Flanders is written as the autobiography of a beautiful fallen woman who is readily consumed by temptation, lust and greed in patriarchal late 17th century England. Born unto a charlatan thief in prison, Moll is placed in the care of many misguided hands that are all too willing to exploit her lack of moral vicissitude as a young woman.

After being taken advantage of several times, Moll turns the tables on London and decides that she must establish her own fortune and has fewer and fewer scruples about how she will achieve independence within the confines of a society pitted against her. She becomes a whore, a trickster and a thief and divulges her adventures and misfortunes in such an intimate, gossipy manner that you are very sorry that she eventually comes to repent her past indiscretions.

Fortunately, Defoe knows this and the majority of the book is Moll's account of the delightfully wicked parts of her life. I think my favorite part of the book is that it paints such a rich visual history of what London and the early New England colonies were like during Defoe's time. His flowery, verbose style of writing leaves room for ample descriptions of contemporary fashion, vain coquetry and lavish lifestyles of the elite. Moll also gives interesting accounts of the seedy underbelly of London and its dismal inhabitants.

If you can read Shakespeare, this style of novel will be natural enough for you to read at a leisurely pace. If you cannot, it is written in old English which takes some getting used to. I suggest finding a version with extensive footnotes and a map of London; my version has both of these and an introduction by Virgina Woolf which was also quite good.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Saturday Finds

Today was a great day for vintage shopping! I rode my bike around in the glorious weather on the hunt for loot and some rather great things turned up. It's finally the time of year when people clean out their basements, attics, garages... and I swoop in on all their vintage like a bird of prey! Here is what I found, all of which is in the Etsy store :


Top left: Green houndstooth depression era blouse made of rayon in amazing condition
Top right: An aqua sequined cocktail top, late 50's to early 60's
Center: Bright blue cotton printed day dress, 50's
Bottom left: Super versatile brown handbag in a classic shape from the 50's
Bottom left: Very sweet little beaded cashmere cardigan from the 50's

I have been thinking of keeping that brown purse for myself because it really will go with everything that I own, but my purses have already taken over the entire linen closet and there is just no room; hopefully it will find a great home!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Some Rather Dapper Gents

Every now and then, someone from an old photo or a portrait will catch my eye and speak to me in a way I can't really describe. Sometimes I come across faces with so much character that an entire life story seems to pour out of paper and flood my brain with imagined memories. Here are some gentleman that have caught my fancy over the years:

dapper gent

I came across this handsome young fellow in the antique mall I used to work at. He was buried under many a boring, mundane visage but his intense stare and regal carriage separated him from all the other fading faces. I imagine he walked with quite a swagger, carried a weighty gold watch and had many lovers.


These guys look like trouble to me! These look like the kind of hooligans that I would have run around with, and the type my mom would have kept me away from.


This well built pin-up boy was probably the life of every party in LA and San Fransisco back in the late 70's! I bought this magazine thinking I would find naked sailors from the 40's (it's a guy-guy publication) but much to my dismay there were only yucky 1970's hairy guys. So I threw the inside of the magazine out and kept the front page.


Edgar Degas was quite possibly the vainest and most talented man of his day. His slightly raised eyebrow seems to challenge you to say any different. He has the look of a confident, self-absorbed intellect. I love this self portrait just as much if not better than any of his ballerinas. I have been looking for a hat like his for quite some time, and when I do find it I am going to do a self portrait after this image.


This nice gentleman caught my attention when I was fourteen in high school gym class. Out of all these guys, there is no doubt that his swagger and confidence would give any of them a run for their money. Luckily for me, he is real and happens to be mine. His name is David and I took this picture of him smoking a fine cigar in Jamaica a couple years back.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Retro wedges

Well spring is finally here and I am ready to show some toes! Though I love to put on a stilletto for about, um, 20 minutes, I really am all about the comfy shoes. However, I am only 5'2" so I need a little lift! Wedges are the perfect solution. I am particularly enamored with 1940's and 50's style ones like these:


However, I since I can't have these same ones I have been searching for a suitable stand in and think I have at last decided on a pair of Kork-Ease that have a really similar profile. This company has been around since 1953 and still makes very retro, comfortable styles. I think I am sold:


I am also a big fan of German made Worishofers; some of their shoes are old-ladyish but others are downright flirty and retro! They have also been around for quite some time. I own the pair below in cherry red, and I have to say they are the most comfortable, buttery soft thing that ever graced my feet.


As much as I love these I still cannot stop lusting after this pair from Remix Vintage Shoes - the tooled leather is just too perfect:


And last but not least, this versatile, demure little grey pair I found on the Anthro website:

A bit more modern but still retro enough to wear with a cotton 50's day dress. My toes are nearly frozen as we speak, but they should thaw out by Saturday because it's supposed to be 70 degrees in New York City!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Who doesn't love an Easter hat?

So since moving to New York, I haven't really done anything to celebrate Easter. This year, I got really sentimental about the Italian bread my Nona makes, and the lasagna, and sitting around the table joking around with my family. But luckily for me, I got an invite to go to brunch with my friend Leslie and a big group of people at an awesome place called Jules Bistro on the Lower East Side! The place was totally charming, with flowers blooming in rustic boxes outside and a really gritty live jazz band. Easter Sunday gave me the perfect excuse to stroll through Washington Square Park and don the perfect little 1920's style hat I have been wistfully looking at all winter! I suffered in the cold for the first picture but I think it was worth it!


Hat: Forever 21
Blouse: No name from Daffy's
Skirt: Target
Knee Highs: Via Spiga
Oxfords: Nine West
Purse: Handmade by me


The fabulous Leslie and I outside Jules Bistro


More Bellinis please! Carnation courtesy of Leslie.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Monday, April 6, 2009

Hello World!

It is lovely to meet you.

My name is Giana, and this blog is dedicated to my love of all things vintage and handmade. I have been collecting vintage clothing, accessories and housewares since I was a little girl and have a passion for a wide variety of arts and crafts including a lot of sewing, knitting, making jewelry and embroidering. Some of my other hobbies include cooking, reading, photography and traveling so you might see some posts about these things too!

I am a hardcore thriftstore and flea market addict; nothing is more exciting to me than digging through giant piles of stuff and uncovering buried treasure! I got my blog name as a result of a conversation I had with my boyfriend about what animal I would be in a past life. He said I would be a seagull because I am always collecting shiny objects and stealing his food! I have entire troves of jewelry, shoes, purses and vintage clothes, not to mention dishes and beads, so The Greedy Seagull seemed like the perfect alter ego for my blog.

I recently discovered the online community of vintage fashion addicts such as myself, and decided that I would like to share my thoughts, inspirations, and some of my treasures with everyone else. I live and work in the New York City area, one of the most exciting and inspiring places on the planet, and also an amazing resource for vintage and all varieties of supplies for projects, so I hope to post often!

Send me a hello sometime for any reason at all- I am super outgoing and love new friends!

Lots of Love,

The Greedy Seagull