black and blue

well, the holidays are approaching. i don’t know quite what it is, but i can certainly feel it in the air. my outfits are getting more casual, i’m losing the motivation to get work done, and today i’m blogging from my boyfriend’s parents house! we’re here to relax and hang out for the evening. my almost-day-off got me thinking: i’m going to be out of town for several days coming up, and i might have to actually pull away from the internet and leave the blog on vacation! it’s probably a good thing because now that the semester at school is over, i really do need a good break. and what better way than to enjoy a big thanksgiving dinner with family?

so in fitting with the mood, i dressed very casually today. no frills. and i was entertained by the way it came out: i’ve got black and blue, highs and lows, silver and gold. almost my entire outfit was vintage found in thrift shops for a few dollars each, except for my fancy pants j brand jeans. and i’ve had this men’s watch forever, but i hardly ever wear it! in fact, i think i’ve had these boots for 2 years and i never wore them until today. it’s kind of amazing how i still struggle to think of an outfit to wear some days when there are so many items in my closet that i haven’t even worn yet. but sometimes i’m just waiting for the right opportunity to wear it. does that ever happen to you?

vintage navy blue puff sleeved blazer, thrifted
vintage plaid blouse, thrifted
high rise skinny jeans, j brand
vintage justin roper boots, thrifted
gold and silver timex watch, target

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kdikio vintage necklace giveaway!

win this vintage necklace from kdikio vintage!

i am so excited about this latest giveaway courtesy of kdikio vintage! the mellow yellow necklace is a lovely statement piece on a 15″ chain. lately, i’ve been thinking a lot about the lack of jewelry in my collection, so i’m very happy to have discovered this new vintage jewelry shop. what better way to start a collection, than with their offerings of unique and affordable items.

to enter, visit the kdikio vintage shop and then leave a comment telling us how you might style an outfit with this necklace, and be sure to include your email address so we can contact you if you’re the winner! contest ends friday, november 27 at noon p.s.t.

*winner will be chosen randomly to receive the mellow yellow vintage necklace from kdikio vintage. comments without an email address will be disqualified. this contest is only open to residents of the u.s. and canada.


calivintage on queens of vintage

i am so honored to have been chosen as vintage queen no. 47 on! i know i just told you so much about myself in my recent calivintage q&a, but you should definitely check out this feature, as i explain how i got into vintage and what it is that i like about vintage so much. i really liked their take on my style:

“Our amazing Vintage Queen number 47 impresses us with her cool thrift style. Proving everyone wrong who thought trend-led fashion can only come from designers and the highstreet, Erin’s outfits are a masterclass in how to make vintage pieces your own in a completely contemporary way.”

i’m so flattered! and the site is really great because they feature a lot of incredibly inspiring vintage bloggers who i really admire. so check out the feature and let me know what you think!


jail birds

on the heels of my last two posts, i decided to do one last prison chic inspiration post. after mentioning the student protests in france during the 60′s in this post yesterday and then doing my own little interrogation in this post, i found out that the university of california students at berkeley staged a protest of the uc system fee hike and occupied the wheeler hall. apparently 41 students were arrested. as much as i love california, the budget over here is bad. the uc system will be experiencing a 32% fee increase next fall. i hate to get too political on a personal style blog, but i really do believe education should be accessible to all people, so this is pretty rough.

anyway, thanks to the fantasy of fashion photography, at least i can imagine that this is what it’s like in prison. pretty bad-ass, no? i don’t have links to the originals, but i can tell you that they are steven meisel for w magazine and that i found them over at cat party.


the interrogation

i just couldn’t help myself! i had to get a quick shot of me in the interrogation room for this post. anyway, i was going to split this up into several parts, but decided to just DO THIS THING. so grab yourself a glass of wine and get comfy, because this is going to be really, really long. in fitting with the theme, i decided to add some photos of me trying to pick something to wear. geez, it’s like erin unplugged over here today!

what was your first vintage piece of clothing that you fell in love with?
i distinctly remember a red givenchy sweater that i bought at an estate sale with my mom. i think i was in the 7th grade. one day i decided to give it away and then for weeks after, i regretted it. now, i fall in love with vintage all the time, but no longer have a hard time saying goodbye. the thing with vintage (and clothing in general) is the impermanence of it. you rip it or stain it or else it goes out of fashion or you change your taste, so you can only enjoy it while it lasts.

when did you first start taking care in what you wore?
always! when i was a little kid, my daily routine would involve 2 – 3 outfit changes per day, much to my poor mother’s consternation. i was often heard complaining that i had nothing to wear whilst sitting in a pile of clothes. um, i basically still do the same thing today…

what’s your personal style philosophy?
i dress for myself because i want to look good. i try to find silhouettes that are flattering and i tend to go for simplicity. ideally, i would love the wear a mix of vintage and designer pieces, but i’m not at a place in my life where i can afford designer clothing.

what inspired you to blog???
well, i always cared a lot about getting dressed, so when i discovered sites like chictopia and weardrobe, i just started posting my outfits. there was just this sort of natural progression where blogging just seemed like the next logical step.

who takes your pictures?
my boyfriend. his name is brendan and he does really cool art and writes fiction as well. he will be making his debut on my blog next week!

do you ever get scared when you’re posing on your rooftop because i’m terrible with heights and i can barely even go on my friend’s fire escape and so i was just wondering if that’s an issue for you, because the photos come out looking really cool but it looks nerve-wracking to be up there.
i’m not afraid of heights. in fact, i like climbing, hiking, and biking up to high places very much.

do you always feel confident in your outfit choices or do you ever worry about what others think?
in order to leave the house in what i’m wearing, i do have to feel confident. but sometimes when i go out, i get self-concious if a lot of people stare at me. i just want to look good, i don’t want to be gawked at.

there’s a lot of cute stuff out there but i don’t feel like i have the confidence to wear it. any advice on what i can tell myself so that i just go for it?
sometimes we just allow ourselves and others to define who we are and how we should be. i think it’s important to remember that you’re allowed to change and do what you want!

where do you shop on the rare occasion that you don’t go vintage?
i will shop anywhere. mostly h&m, forever 21, j.crew, urban outfitters, anthropologie, nordstrom,,, rue la la, gilt groupe.

do you have a favorite designer(s)?
chloe, built by wendy, luella, lover, charles anastase, steven alan, wren, a.p.c., rachel comey, 3.1 philip lim, band of outsiders, marc jacobs.

if you had a bunch of money given to you to expand your closet, what would be your first (expensive) purchase?
i would buy a mulberry bayswater. i’ve always wanted one.

what’s the best purchase you ever made?
i have no idea. but i am always most pleased when i buy a cashmere cardigan. i wear them until they are threadbare and get holes because they are so warm and comfy.

what is your favorite color to wear?
i don’t have a favorite. i tend to wear a lot of neutrals: black, gray, navy, cream, white, but i would love to add more red and mustard yellow into the mix. or else maybe i’m just craving a hot dog? get it? ketchup and mustard? yeah…

are there any current actors/musicians/celebs who’s style you particularly admire?
this always changes, but i am currently watching alexa chung and chloe sevigny very closely. i also like to see what michelle williams and rachel bilson are wearing.

what would be the most unlikely thing we’d ever see you wearing?
um, i probably wouldn’t wear pink velour sweatpants with juicy across the butt.

what do you do for a living?
i write my blog, sell vintage clothing on etsy, and go to school full-time.

what are you studying in school?
liberal studies with an emphasis on multiple subject teaching (elementary school) and a minor in art.

what is something that you really want to achieve in the next year?
i want my blog and etsy shop to pay my living expenses. i have a strong feeling that this will happen in the next year, if not the next few months and i am oh so excited because i put a lot of time and effort into it and i think it would only be fair to get a little bit back in return for all that work!

what do you see yourself doing in ten years time?
wow, i have absolutely no idea. i can’t answer that. i’m studying to become a teacher, but i’m also really enjoying the whole world of fashion, so i’m leaving it open.

what would be your ideal blue collar job? me, i’d like to try out being a mailperson or train conductor.
i would want to do finish carpentry, like building furniture and other fine woodwork, but that job doesn’t exist anymore because they have ikea now.

what are your tattoos of?
i actually did a blog post about my tattoos here. there are even scans of where the original images came from.

if you could get your dream tattoo, what would your design be, influenced by whom/what and who would the ultimate tattoo artist be to do it?
see above. or click here.

what’s you favorite movie?
i can never ever choose favorites! this will be a mix of actual movie titles and directors that i love in no particular order: harold and maude, jean-luc godard, mean girls, spike jonze, heathers, woody allen, the dark crystal, federico fellini, the neverending story, alexander payne, welcome to the dollhouse, hayao miyazaki, the graduate, wes anderson. there’s too many.

if you were a character in a book or a film (or both!) who would you be?
anna karina in pierrot le fou or audrey hepburn in funny face. i’m not saying i’m like them, but i wish i was! if you’re asking who i’m actually like, i don’t know. my boyfriend always says i’m like giulietta masina in the nights of cabiria, which is quite a compliment to me!

what’s your favourite book?
i’m embarrassingly not very well-read when it comes to fiction. some of my favorite authors are arthur miller, kurt vonnegut, j.d. salinger, jeffrey eugenides.

what kind of music do you listen to?
some favorites in no particular order: the pixies, of montreal, the kinks, xtc, the breeders, cat stevens, tom tom club, the blow, weezer, radiohead, beck, belle and sebastian, the beatles, joni mitchell, air, bjork, submission hold. boy, some of this stuff really dates me.

i always associate a particular piece of music/tune to an era…do you have any favorite tunes, say for 30s, 40s, 50, 60s?
sons of the pioneers, woody guthrie, django reinhardt, thelonius monk, the beatles.

what song would you choose as the soundtrack to your life?
if you want to sing out by cat stevens for the harold and maude soundtrack. that’s kind of a joke. i don’t know how to answer that one.

what makes you laugh?
the other night i caught that episode of i love lucy where she does the famous mirror routine with harpo marx and i laughed so hard! seriously, that show is funny.

what makes you cry?
i cried the other day for like 10 seconds because i was overwhelmed with holiday plans and finishing up the semester in school. i love the holidays, but it gets stressful sometimes.

why do you love california?
it’s where i was born and where 5 generations of my family were born before me. it’s absolutely beautiful, with miles and miles of coastline, hot deserts, and majestic mountain ranges, of which you can experience all in one day. and there’s really good food, beer, and wine here.

where in the world would you most like to visit?
i haven’t had the opportunity to travel yet. the only place i’ve been outside of the u.s. is belize. i would love to go back to the caribbean, but i’d also like to see mexico, france, and sweden.

if you could only order one thing from a coffee shop for life, what would it be?
i want to say coffee with steamed soy milk, but seeing as i recently quit drinking coffee (we’ll see how long that lasts), i have to say tea with steamed soy milk.

if you could go back in time..what year would it be??
i would want to go back to prehistoric times and check out some dinosaurs.

if you could meet or see again anyone past or present, who would it be and why?
like jesus? i dunno… oprah?


boredom is counterrevolutionary

so i thought this might be a silly little precursor to my next post, in which i do a little calivintage q&a. some fashionable photos of lineups and interrogations. this is a series shot by jason brownrigg titled may ’68, which i assume is referring to france in may of 1968, when a student political movement, paired with a disgruntled working class staged a revolt, taking over several blocks in downtown paris.

as a side note: this is also pertinent, since just last night i watched tout va bien for the second time. it’s a film about a labor strike in a sausage factory in france, starring jane fonda and yves montand. if you’ve already seen a lot of the other godard films, i would recommend giving it a view. if not, then watch breathless or pierrot le fou first!

anyway, these are some lovely, romantic images that captured my eye when i saw them over at nadinoo’s blog, posted as hair inspiration. seriously, these girls have the most amazing hair! and those outfits. dear me. alright, now off to the interrogation room to answer all of those questions you guys asked me!


getting to know me

hah ha. you see what i did there? it’s like those lyrics, “getting to know you,” but then i replaced the you with me because this blog post is about getting to know me… yeah…

see, yesterday i received a blogger award from quincy of q’s daydream (thank you, dear!) and it includes a little questionnaire in which you get the opportunity to answer the questions and post them up on your blog to share a little bit more about you. i started to fill it out and i realized that it would be so much fun if i were to have you, dear readers, ask me some questions, and i’ll answer those instead. because the more i think about it, i don’t really share all that much with you besides my sartorial decisions, or else i complain about the weather or homework or some such silliness. and i think it’s because i don’t always know what people would be interested to know. so whether you’ve been reading my blog for a long time, or if this is your first time here, go ahead, ask away, and then tomorrow i will answer all your questions in another post!

but before i go, i kinda have to talk a little about my dress, too. this here is another piece in my vintage feedsack dress collection. i have absolutely no idea how to date this one because it is handmade, and because feedsack dresses were popular from the 30′s right through the 60′s, probably even later in rural areas. usually, the clue for me is the style of the dress or else some known history of the original owner, but i can’t figure this one out. when did wrap dresses get popular? that might be a clue… anyway, i love love love the print and the teeny tiny rick rack details.

now don’t forget to ask me some questions! what do you want to know about the girl behind calivintage???

vintage feedsack dress, ebay
skinny leather belt, urban outfitters
merino wool stockings, wolford
blimey platform oxfords, seychelles


shop my look

so you probably already know i’m a pretty big fan of weardrobe. i was fortunate enough to meet the lovely people behind the site (suzanne, rich, and jessica of what i wore) in new york this summer during the blogger conference, and it was a blast! so i just have to tell you about their latest developments: weardrobe has teamed up with to offer you a new “shop the look” feature for any of the outfits featured on the site. and i am so pleased to see that two of my outfits are featured right now, so you should definitely check it out!

boy, now i am even more tempted to break the bank with a new pair of over the knee boots.


lillian bassman book giveaway!

oh, i just love a good giveaway, so when abrams books approached me and asked if i’d be interested in hosting a giveaway for this lovely book, i gladly obliged! they have such a beautiful selection of art and fashion books! since i don’t yet have my own copy, here is a little synopsis:

At age 92, Lillian Bassman, beloved figure in the pantheon of fashion photographers, is still at work. A contemporary of Richard Avedon and Irving Penn, her work helped define the legendary Harper’s Bazaar of the 1950s. Lillian Bassman: Women features more than 150 of her best images, including many that have never been published before.

to enter, all you have to do is become a fan of calivintage on facebook and you will automatically be entered to win. if you are already a fan, then thank you so much! that means you are already eligible to win this book! the winner will be chosen at random on saturday at 12pm p.s.t.

*winner will receive one copy of lillian bassman:women, open to international readers.