Not a hair out of place. That's how the women did it in the 40s and 50s, and that's how Caitlin Moneypenny-Johnston does it now (ever so effortlessly, might we add). Her daily looks are inspiring enough, but take a peek at what she pulled together our very vintage Halloween shoot, in and around the Walt Disney Family Museum.
Caitlin as Lucille Ball: Vintage scarf, purchased from an estate sale; Hotcakes Designs earrings, purchased from Favor; Vintage dress, purchased from Moon Zoom in Santa Cruz; Brooch from Luxulite Etsy shop; Vintage belt, bag, and bracelets; Re-Mix Vintage shoes; Besame Brightening Violet face powder; MAC lipstick in "Russian Red".
"I started exploring vintage because I found that modern clothing didn't compliment my body-type well," said Caitlin. "And I was frustrated by the disposable, cheap quality of clothing in my price range. I'm a total bargain shopper and usually don't spend more than $40-50 on anything."
Caitlin is a marketing maven at The Walt Disney Family Museum. She says kids often mistake her as part of the exhibits.
Caitlin's vintage clothing tips: Get to know your measurements and know them well. I do most of my shopping online and can tell pretty quickly if something will fit me well or not. Knowing how to repair and alter will help ensure that your wardrobe lasts longer, too.
Caitlin on modern vintage: There are a a lot of great reproduction brands for clothes, shoes and jewelry. My favorites are Collectif for pants, Freddies of Pinewood for jeans, Bernie Dexter for dresses, Re-Mix Vintage and Miss L Fire for shoes, Luxulite, Hotcakes and Classic Hardware for jewelry and ModCloth for practically everything.
Caitlin as Katharine Hepburn: Vintage top, purchased from Decades on Fashion; Vintage jacket, from Alameda Antiques by the Bay; Vintage hat from Viva Las Vegas; Vintage brooch, sailor pants and shoes, all purchased from eBay; Polka-dot socks, from Macy's; Vintage earrings and watch.
Caitlin's favorite item: My 1940s wooden brooch with acorns and oak leaves. I love woodland-themed ephemera and it's quite the statement piece.
Her style icons: Dita Von Tease and Katharine Hepburn.
Caitlin as a Vintage-Chic Halloween Witch: Vintage jacket and skirt set from eBay; Black blouse from Forever 21; Vintage purse from Alameda Antiques by the Bay; Earrings and brooch from Etsy; Spider jewel brooch, purchased at The Vintage Expo SF; Miss L Fire shoes, Chanel lipstick in "Envoutante;" Vintage gloves and bracelets.
"This spider was a brooch that broke so I glued it onto a fascinator," said Caitlin.
Her product picks: Sephora brand or MAC liquid liners, Chanel (especially for reds), Stila and MAC lipsticks, Mary Kay TimeWise Lip Primer to help moisturize, and my Clarisonic.
In her bag: Phone, lipstick, wallet - nothing exotic! I usually have my current knitting project for long car rides or if I need a break from work, too.
Caitlin's style inspiration: My favorite vintage style blog is By Gum, By Golly. Tasha, the woman who runs the blog, has so much fun with style, and she knits and sews much of her wardrobe. She inspires my style and craft/DIY efforts.
Caitlin as a Cat Lady: Vintage earrings from Etsy, Vintage bag, J. Crew toggle sweater and kitty shoes, all from eBay; Vintage kitty blouse from RAW Vintage; Betsy Johnson kitty bracelet; Watch, gift from aunts and grandmother; Collectif UK high-waisted pants; Chanel lipstick in "Lover;" Vintage tortoise sunglasses from Allyn Scura.
"Allyn Scura is the best vintage frames seller around," said Caitlin.
Caitlin's vintage hair tips: Do research online and find a routine that works for you. I do pretty much the same makeup and hair routine every day (Mine takes 15-20 minutes, tops!). For DIY hair tutorials, the Lisa Freemont Street YouTube channel is the best. Finding a stylist who knows vintage cuts is helpful, too. I go to Summer Murase who now works at Patrick Richards Salon.
Seven Questions for Caitlin
1. What are you being for Halloween this year?
I have an ongoing joke that I look like Michael Jackson (black hair, pale skin, petite nose, c'mon!), so I'm going to dress up as an 80s version of him. I convinced a good friend and co-worker to dress as my Bubbles the Monkey.
2. Where do you shop in the Bay?
The best shop in SF is Relic Vintage on Haight. I also love Skirt Chaser in Santa Rosa and Chick-A BOOM in Petaluma.
3. What's your go-to outfit?
A circle skirt, simple top, cozy cardigan and ballet flats.
4. How many shoes do you own?
Oh, Lord. I'd be embarrassed to count! I would guess around 60 pairs.
5. What would you never be caught dead in?
Flip-flops (except that one Halloween). They give me toe cramps.
6. What's on your Bay Area bucket list?
Get really dolled up and have a drink at the Top of the Mark. Also, visit Alcatraz (something I still haven't done in my decade-long residence in SF).
7. What's your SF Top 5?
-My place of work, The Walt Disney Family Museum, a to-do for any vintage, arts or culture hound.
-For drinking, Smuggler's Cove.
-For shopping, Alameda Point Antique Faire.
-For fun, Zoo Station shows (my favorite U2 cover band) or New Wave City. My style is in the 40s and 50s, but my ears are stuck in the 80s!
-And my home with my man and my kitties (I'm a bit of a homebody).
Lily Ko (lily7x7 @gmail.com) studied fashion design and merchandising at Central Saint Martins and the Academy of Art University. In addition to writing for 7x7, Lily works as a freelance stylist, writer, and designer.