The Great, Great Gatsby: Part One

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While the reviews after the opening weekend of the most anticipated film of the year have been lackluster, at best…  there is still so much to be celebrated about this film.  I wasn’t able to see it yet, but I DID get a chance to view the costumes and listen to the soundtrack.  Both elements are award-worthy, regardless.

People often ask me why I am so obsessed with vintage fashion. There’s the obvious: the fit, the quality of the fabrics, the exquisite tailoring that endures time.  But, more than that, for me, it is my fascination with the woman behind the piece: Who was she?  Where was it worn? What were women of her era passionate about? Fashion, as an art form, often mirrors the struggles of the soul. Take a look at what women wore at any given moment in history, and you will see clues to the story of their triumphs and struggles.  The Gatsby Era of the 1920’s began with women winning the right to vote.  Forced into the workplace of factories during WW1, these women were empowered and ready to prove themselves as capable as men. They could earn like men, drink like men, vote like men, and even dress like men.  Designers like Coco Chanel infused womens fashion with androgynous elements such as ties, hats, and even the ultimate taboo: pants!

While it may not be as obvious, the traditional dress of flappers was also meant to suggest masculinity.  They cut their hair short. They donned baggy, shapeless frocks meant to disguise their womanly features, such as the size of their breasts.  This loose fit along with the adornments of fringe, beading, and tassels was a public expression that these women were ready to move and shake.

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I created an illusion of a longer length and dropped-waist silhouette typical of the 1920’s by layering a longer dress under each of our dresses.  In my case, I just wanted to add dimension and volume to the bottom by layering under a printed silk dress.  Alyona is wearing a beautiful Peter Martin silk flapper dress under a frock from the 80’s.  This is an option when styling your own 1920’s looks if you do not happen to have a “real” flapper or drop-waist dress.

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My accessories start at the top with a hat that I MADE MYSELF!  I have always wanted to be a milliner; I created this piece a few summers ago at a hat-making workshop I took at 3rdWard in Brooklyn. (www.3rdward.com)  I plan to begin including some of my original headpieces on www.shopgingerscloset.com soon, stay tuned to my weekly postings and you may score one of my very own originals soon :)

While the earrings are from (my favorite secret) The W Boutique and the necklace is a cheapie from Arden B, the ring is a vintage piece I have had for years.

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The fur, which was also featured in THIS post, is a custom piece gifted to me and created by USA Fur in NYC.  The parasol I bought from a Chinese Market in Soho and decorated with flowers and rhinestones myself.  Parasols are a beautiful way to stay cool in the summer, especially when they are in a hue as lovely as this fuchsia one.  I will be making these and selling them on www.shopgingerscloset.com soon, too!

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The shoes are by Roberto Cavalli, see another way I styled them in my GRAND CENTRAL Post.

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Alyona wears a beautiful feathered frock layered over a flapper dress by Peter Martin.  I had her wear the dresses sash tied as a headscarf typical of the 20’s (and embellished with a vintage brooch my mother gave me as a birthday gift).

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Her jewelry is comprised of stacking strand upon strand of pearls, both vintage and new.  Her earrings are vintage.

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The clutch is vintage made of lucite.  The shoes are her own, label unknown.

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On Ginger (in Pink):

Dress: (Top) Vintage by “Pat Richards”, (Layered Underneath) Julien MacDonald London, Fur: Custom Piece made by United States Fur, Earrings: Unknown from W Boutique, Brooch: Vintage, Ring: Vintage, Necklace: Arden B, Parasol: Pearl River Market (embellished by me, www.shopgingerscloset.com), Headpiece: Handmade by Ginger (ME!), Shoe: Roberto Cavalli

On Alyona (in Blue):

Dress: (Top) Vintage by “Cher Jacque”, from eBay Seller: violetville (Layered Underneath) Peter Martin, from eBay Seller: olivia-grace-stores, Headscarf: Vintage (Belt that came with Dress), Necklaces: (Top) Forever 21, (Over Shoulder) Vintage from www.mafalda-ny.com, Clutch: Vintage, Shoes: Unmarked

Photography by Chris Knight, www.ChrisKnightPhoto.com

Styling by Ginger, www.Ginger-Snap.com

6 thoughts on “The Great, Great Gatsby: Part One

    1. Awwwww, thanks darling. You were my first introduction to beauty and fashion world. This is probably all your fault :)

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