fall feelings


apparently we’re experiencing the first days of fall, but i wouldn’t know it with the scorching hot temperatures here in southern california. so i’m still in “summer goth” mode, making my best effort to conjure up fall vibes without totally melting in 100+ degree weather. honestly, a big reason why i haven’t been sharing very many outfit photos lately is because it’s so hot and humid outside that i can’t even bear it. i say this as i’m currently sitting in a moderately air conditioned room drinking ice cold water and dreaming about swimming pools…

reifhaus malheur jumpsuit
brookes boswell boro in black panama straw
swedish hasbeens pearl high in navy
clare v. petit kenya bag with a vintage silk scarf




elizabeth suzann fall 2015


oh man you guys, i’m still not back in the swing of things over here, but i had to pop in to belatedly share the elizabeth suzann fall 2015 collection. it’s been out for a little bit now, but we’re just barely getting some cooler days in these parts, so i have only been slowly getting used to the idea of fall clothes. and if i could swathe myself in only one collection this fall, it would probably be this one. i’ve been following elizabeth suzann since her first collection a few years ago (i have her classic vera slip dress that i wear on fancy occasions), and her designs really truly get better and better every season. for fall, there are lots of luxurious textures and interesting silhouettes, which were inspired by louise bourgeois and eva hesse. of the collection, she says,

Some of my favorite artists influenced the Fall/Winter 2015 collection. Texture fascinated these women, who adeptly created tactile sensation through visual art alone. I have always been selective about what fabrics we use, but texture and fiber were driving forces this season. We wanted to use fabrics that are not only incredibly warm and rich, but that intrigue before you even touch them – sheer wool gauze, chunky rib knit, fuzzy woven wools.

The collection was not only shaped by the works of great artists, but also by their lives and the lives of all creatives. I find that an artist’s wardrobe can be so informative. They are aesthetic and visual individuals that also require practicality and function. Deep pockets, easy layering pieces, heavy-weight wools that can stand up to dead-of-winter cold – this collection is our most versatile yet. Structured and architectural pieces can be dressed down and layered, or worn alone for striking simplicity.

my current favorite is the holland pant. apparently they were a popular style because they are already out of stock with more coming soon. i really love the way her variety textures and textiles elevate these simple, yet elegant and very wearable clothes.

shop the full collection here.




summer snapshots


i’ve been a little scarce around these parts lately. sort of a forced “vacation” thanks to a pretty nasty bug that found me spending most of last week stuck in bed! but of course, life has still been moving along as usual. adam has been keeping me thoroughly entertained. he may be hard to keep up with (especially when i’m sick), but it’s fun to watch him grow and learn and play. just about every day he says a new word that i’ve never heard him say, and we have little conversations about trucks or trains or owls or the moon. we picked up a pumpkin at the grocery store and a book about pumpkins at the library and he now incessantly talks about pumpkins. i have a feeling that halloween is going to be especially fun this year.

and now i’m off for a mini 10-year-anniversary celebration with brendan. we basically just took the day off to spend together while adam hangs out at his grandma’s house. it’s a pretty modest celebration for such a big milestone, but we have plans to make up for it soon!



he occasionally lays himself down on the ground like this. it’s also become a really great strategy for passive resistance when he doesn’t want to do something!


here adam decided to draw on me with sidewalk chalk, thanks dude!


contemplating his it’s it ice cream sandwich. they have a new online shop, so they sent this toddler tee to adam as a gift.




late summer


i recently realized something about this blog. i usually only take outfit photos one day of the week, maybe two, which means that i’m actually only sharing 1/7th of what i normally wear on a daily basis. so if i’m not really paying attention, you could end up getting a pretty inaccurate view of what my wardrobe really looks like. case in point? i haven’t shared a single outfit centered around a jumpsuit in months, yet i actually own one for every day of the week. i’m not even kidding! jumpsuits, overalls, rompers, coveralls. they’ve been the foundation of my wardrobe this entire past spring and summer, yet i never seem to pull one on when the camera is around. i have no idea why.

but over the weekend, i did get a few photos of my newest acquisition: this amazing denim jumpsuit, handmade in los angeles by 323. it was one of those perfectly serendipitous finds. seven sisters boutique posted it on their instagram feed, so i reached out to the shop owner jillian to find out more about it. while it isn’t currently available on the site, they do stock it in their brick & mortar shop, or you can reach out by phone or email to place an order. it’s one of those really perfect summer transitional pieces. easy to pair with a t-shirt now, or to layer over a sweater when the temperatures get chilly. i decided to go with some “explorer vibes” for this look. i’ve been accessorizing everything with my ranger hat and bandana lately. makes me feel a bit like indiana jones, haha!

vintage raw silk top
denim jumpsuit courtesy of 323, also available at seven sisters in portland
maryam nassir zadeh roberta heels in navy
brookes boswell ranger hat
self-made indigo dyed bandana





Tags: ,


hdh plus

Photographed by Eliesa Johnson for Hackwith Design House

last night while browsing through pinterest, i came across the new hackwith design house plus lookbook for fall 2015, and i am super excited!  it could not have come at a better time since i just joined the team here at calivintage earlier this week, and i already have a new collection to write about! both erin and i are dedicated to supporting independent designers, but unfortunately, when it comes to plus size offerings, there are a lot less options out there. so this new collection of minimalist designs is a pretty big deal. not only is the collection a filled with incredibly wearable options, but each piece is hand-sewn in small quantities using high quality fabrics in their design studio in minneapolis.

i love that the focus is on timeless designs that can be worn season after season rather than hitting on whatever is trendy at the moment. they’re the types of clothes that you can use to build the foundation of a really solid, versatile wardrobe. using interesting shoes and accessories, you can create your own unique look. the collection will be available september 21 and lucky me, that’s three days before my birthday!

photographed by eliesa johnson for hackwith design house

Photographed by Eliesa Johnson for Hackwith Design House
Photographed by Eliesa Johnson for Hackwith Design House
Photographed by Eliesa Johnson for Hackwith Design House
Photographed by Eliesa Johnson for Hackwith Design House
Photographed by Eliesa Johnson for Hackwith Design House
Photographed by Eliesa Johnson for Hackwith Design House
Photographed by Eliesa Johnson for Hackwith Design House
Photographed by Eliesa Johnson for Hackwith Design House
Photographed by Eliesa Johnson for Hackwith Design House
Photographed by Eliesa Johnson for Hackwith Design House
Photographed by Eliesa Johnson for Hackwith Design House
Photographed by Eliesa Johnson for Hackwith Design House

Tags: ,




oh you know, just me wearing yet another vintage dress that i over-dyed with indigo. when i found this dress at the local antique mall, it was kinda sad looking… a dingy white with pastel patchwork that had clearly seen better days. it seemed like the perfect candidate for a refresh in a vat of dye, and i could not be more pleased with the results. it’s always a bit of a gamble when you dye something like this because the dye will only react with natural fibers, but lots of clothes are sewn with polyester thread because it’s less expensive and more durable than cotton. i don’t always mind the contrast stitching that results, but i do really love when an entire piece is transformed into this dark, inky hue.

so yeah, still continuing my love affair with indigo. it’s so easy to just pull on a dress like this and style it with simple, classic pieces. like this straw hat that i’ve worn practically every day this summer. and my clare vivier tote bag. and my new pair of mnz roberta heels. i had been dreaming about these shoes all season long, and i finally decided to take the plunge and get them. i’m really glad that i did because despite the fact that i was afraid they were too tight when i got them, they’ve stretched out nicely and have actually turned out to be really comfortable and practical to wear. and of course now i want them in all of the colors!

vintage dress over-dyed with natural indigo
brookes boswell wakefield in panama straw
clare v. petit kenya bag
maryam nassir zadeh roberta heels in navy suede




good night, day fall 2015


it’s still a bit too warm for knitwear around these parts, but taking a look through the pages of the new good night, day fall 2015 lookbook is getting me in the mood for cooler weather. tara-lynn is constantly coming up with the most beautiful knits in the softest and comfiest yarns. she does all of the work, from sourcing fairly traded natural fibers from south america to designing and knitting each and every order. her focus is on sustainability, and her approach is consciously political. creating handknit, minimalist designs as a positive contribution to the slow fashion movement. as a fashion blogger, it’s something that i think a lot about. increasingly, i chose to spend my dollars on clothes made my independently run businesses like tara-lynn’s. and of course, it doesn’t hurt that all of her work is incredibly beautiful!

her latest lookbook was shot by arden wray and modeled by airin mcguinty and brooke manning with clothing provided by lauren winter.












Tags: ,


the new kid on the block


for the first time since i started the blog way back in 2008, i am very excited to announce that i’m finally adding a new member to the calivintage team! and if she looks familiar, that’s because we both share the same genes! that’s right, it’s my sister, erica! i’ve written about her a few times before, and she’s actually made some behind-the-scenes appearances on my blog. most notably, she helped me out with a series of family recipe posts and holiday d.i.y. projects. but today, she’s officially joining calivintage to share plus size style tips and to help me expand my little vintage shop. in particular, she’ll be helping me to increase my plus size vintage offerings and helping to introduce housewares to the shop.

i am so incredibly excited to have her onboard with me, and i can’t wait to see what she adds to the mix. so please join me in giving her a warm welcome to calivintage!

erica is wearing:
vintage dress
vintage coach doctor bag
brookes boswell boro in black panama straw



indigo days


it seems as though things have been taking a rather crafty turn around here lately! i just posted about my wrap top diy last week, and now i want to talk about indigo dye! you may remember my first foray into the technique last summer. but what you may not know is that since then, i’ve set up my own little shop in my mom’s backyard several more times. and more recently, i’ve been experimenting with different techniques about once a week. it’s not an especially glamorous process… i’m usually sweating over a big vat of stinky dye in 100 degree weather, so i never even think to get photos. but i finally pulled out my camera to get a few shots of what i’ve been up to!

on this particular afternoon, i tried a few different shibori techniques on cotton bandanas that i’ve been using as accessories around my neck, or tied to my purse. i dip-dyed a few tote bags and dresses. and i’ve been over-dyeing vintage dresses with really beautiful results. the mexican dress i’m wearing is one such piece that i’ve completely fallen in love with. yes, the original garment was beautiful with all of its rainbow colors, but i do really love the finished result, with its deep inky hue and muted tones.

i’ve actually amassed such a large collection of pieces that i think it’s time for me to set up a little shop! would you be interested in vintage pieces that have been hand over-dyed with natural indigo?

hand dyed vintage mexican dress
ricardo medina botines
brookes boswell wakefield in panama straw



the refashioners: diy wrap top


you may remember last month i mentioned that the talented portia of makery asked me if i would like to take part in the refashioners. if you aren’t familiar with the program, it’s an annual sewing project that she hosts on her blog, challenging a group of people to refashion an item of clothing into something new. the theme for 2015 was “get shirty,” and she selected a group of 19 bloggers to reconstruct a men’s shirt into something more wearable. even though i’d still consider myself to be a sewing novice, i dream of one day being able to sew my own clothes, and i really love the idea of creative reuse when there are so many garments being literally thrown into the garbage.

so last month, i happily got to work transforming this vintage cotton linen blend men’s shirt into my own wrap-back crop top. and i’m so excited to finally be able to share the results! no, i wasn’t especially meticulous in my execution, but it was actually a really simple d.i.y. with only a couple of steps to complete! and the best part is that it’s totally wearable, and it now has a permanent home in my wardrobe. if you’d like to try it out yourself, you can view the tutorial here along with all of the other participants projects. and if the whole thing has got you feeling inspired, portia has also opened up the challenge to the entire community. you can refashion your very own shirt and submit it to the contest by september 27th for a chance to win a massive prize, including 2 bandanas that i hand-dyed with natural indigo just for the occasion.

self-made back wrap top
asos high waist wide leg jeans in indigo
clare v. petit kenya bag


Tags: ,