Vee Vintage

Curated vintage goods & style inspirations to brighten your world.

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Happy National Thrift Shop Day!!!

Virginia FrancesComment

The question I get asked most by all you lovely people is: What are your favorite thrift shops? I can't believe its taken me this long to publicly respond, but better late than never right?! Above all, I strive to shop at thrift stores that support the work of non-profit organizations. It’s a win-win because I get rad stuff and the money I spend goes back into the community to support things like after-school programs for kids and emergency shelter for women fleeing domestic violence.

So...without further ado, here’s my list. You can click on the links to see photos of some of the fab (mostly vintage) items I’ve purchased and to learn more about each thrift shop and the Organizations they support <3

Seattle, WA

Olympia, WA

Longview, WA

Montana (from the Great Vintage Road Trip!)

 

That's it for now! Feel free to leave a comment with some of your fav spots to thrift. Let's spread the thrift shop love!! Queue Macklemore! HAPPY THRIFTING!!!!

 

The Therapeutic Art of Mending

Virginia Frances5 Comments

I’ve learned so much since I set out on this venture into the vintage clothing world. What I didn’t fully anticipate was the insane amount of time I would spend preparing items for the racks. Every item I sell is professionally dry-cleaned or hand/machine washed by yours truly. I’ve revived some amazing vintage pieces, eliminating the 40-60 years of wear, smell and stains. I'll just go ahead and state the obvious: don’t wear vintage without a proper cleaning. Even if it “looks clean” or “doesn’t smell too bad” it’s probably extremely filthy. I’ve soaked items multiple times that resulted in dark brown water (and a god awful smell permeating the room) within seconds. Yeah…don’t wear that shit. Then there’s the sewing. You wouldn’t believe the number of rips, tears, snags, moth holes, etc. that I’ve repaired in the last year. I now have quite the selection of thread colors, sewing needles, and vintage buttons as a bonus. Then there's the de-pilling, the replacing of buttons, zipper, snaps, etc. The list just goes on. The truth is though, this entire process, while tedious, has become a bit of a therapeutic art form for me. 

Like many of you, I've been feeling really down lately. On top of my usual winter blues I’ve felt the heavy weight of the election results and it’s been hard to feel hopeful about the future (although yesterday’s news of the Dakota Access Pipeline being denied was a bit of a boost). So, I’ve been staying in more than usual, keeping warm by the fireplace, and staking claim on the couch with my pile of imperfect garments, needle and thread in hand, carefully tackling them piece by piece.

The act of renewing something flawed and giving life to something old with my very own hands has given me comfort and even a little hope. Some evenings I’ll sew the night away listening to music (the new Head and the Heart is currently on repeat). Other nights I’ll binge watch a show without feeling quite as guilty because hey, at least I’m being productive. I finished the first season of The Crown* while repairing about a dozen vintage sweaters. Now I'm on to the new Gilmore Girls (OMG!), tackling perhaps my biggest challenge yet.

The sweater above is from the 1970s. There are a total of 8 moth holes (two of them I can fit my hand through) and at least three will require multiple colors of mending yarn. I found the sweater on my GREAT VINTAGE ROAD TRIP this past Summer and it’s been sitting at the bottom of the “to be mended pile” since because it just seemed too daunting to deal with. If the post-election weeks have awoken me to anything its that we must accept the hardest challenges coming our way and face them head-on and armed with the right tools to revitalize what’s good and true in the world. So, I'm ready. I’ll be armed with my needle and thread and I’ll show that moth whose boss and give that sweater the life it deserves! And…I’ll take that lesson to heart because humanity is precious and we’ve come too far to give up now. Together, we must mend what's been broken.

Tools for mending your clothes: Fix Your Clothes by Raleigh Briggs


*A few thoughts on The Crown: 1) John Lithgow better win an Emmy! 2) The actress playing young Queen Elizabeth II looks EXACTLY how the actress playing the older Queen Elizabeth II would have looked at that age! 3) THE CLOTHES!!! *swoon*

 

The Great vintage road trip

Virginia FrancesComment

I’m back in Seattle after nine days of the great #vintageroadtrip. If you’ve been following me on social media, you’re aware of this fun little adventure I’ve been on, but I’m here to tell you a bit more of the intimate details.

Nothing helps clear my head more than driving on the open road. I always find a sense of clarity and new perspective on long road trips. Living in an ever-growing city and working in the hustle & bustle of its downtown slowly wears on me. The funny thing is that I truly do love big city life, yet the minute I start to drive away with that skyline in my rearview, I feel a huge weight beginning to lift. The further down the road I go, I feel like the truest version of myself.

Here’s the complete list of all the little (and big) towns I stopped in.

Washington: Roslyn, Thorp, Moses Lake, Spokane

Idaho: Coeur d’Alene, Kellogg, Wallace,

Montana: Missoula, Bozeman, Livingston, Red Lodge, Bridger, Fromburg, Joliet, Billings

I took four days getting to my “basecamp” in Bridger, Montana and then spent another four days exploring the area there. Just about everyday I scouted inventory, doing my best to shop at small non-profit thrift stores that put the dollars spent back into the local community. I’m also a sucker for yard/garage sales as I love learning a bit about the people putting them on. One old sun-worn hippy guy in Billings was managing the sale of his “lady friend’s” eclectic collection of stuff to help her out while dealing with a “nasty divorce”. He was quite a character and I walked away with some great finds!

A few observations and highlights from my trip:

  1. I have the best travel buddy in the world! My dog, Maddie, was just so awesome and fun to travel with. Because of her I explored more parks than I would have and that’s pretty cool.
  2. I listened to a lot of Dear Sugar Radio. Do yourself a favor and check it out if you haven’t already!
  3. You guys, there are far too many Trump Campaign signs in Eastern Washington. Living in our little liberal bubble of Seattle we tend to forget about the rest of the state.
  4. The best roadtunes are: Lucero, Robyn, Blitzen Trapper, Creedance Clear Water Revival, Daft Punk, Frank Ocean, Jenny Lewis, Rocky Votolato, Sylvan Esso….to name a few J
  5. Yard sales were the absolute best I’ve ever witnessed in Billings, MT. Every intersection of every street had 3-4 signs pointing in all different directions. And they all had pretty sweet stuff!
  6. I spent some quality time with my future mother-in-law, Jean. How did I get so lucky in that department?! She’s just so great in so many ways! Not only did she raise an amazing son she’s an incredible artist and photographer. We did a super fun photoshoot one evening which I can't wait to share with you all soon!
  7. Oh and two other highlights: I read a great book, Brain On Fire, which I highly recommend!! Also, I made a cherry pie. From scratch! With cherries from our yard in Seattle that traveled with me all the way to MT. It was beautiful (with fancy lattice crust top) and delicious!!

Flying home yesterday (thank God I didn’t have to drive another 14 hours home!), I felt like I was ready to tackle the world again. I’ve got big exciting things coming up and it feels good to sort of start with a fresh perspective on things.

As far as all the STUFF goes: Seattle area friends, come to my First Thursday Pop-Up in North Beacon Hill on July 7th for first dibs on some of the most amazing vintage finds from my #roadtripcollection!