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Party Wear
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Fashion History


Watch out for this symbol ...many items in the Attic have been in storage for over 25 years and have never been worn, some still have tickets attached!

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phone Sara 0798.0497.326



STYLE & SPLENDOUR : The wardrobe of Queen Maud of Norway

2 February 2005 - 8 January 2006

FREE Admission


Princess Maud Charlotte Mary Victoria was born 26 November 1869, fifth child of the Prince and Princess of Wales and granddaughter of Queen Victoria. The youngest of two boys and three girls, Maud had a frugal but relaxed upbringing at her father's estate at Sandringham in Norfolk. Her mother, Princess Alexandra was a great sportswoman and encouraged all her children to ride, skate and bicycle.

Princess Maud married her cousin, Prince Carl of Denmark on 22 July 1896. Following the honeymoon, they lived in Copenhagen, while Carl pursued his naval career. Their son, Alexander, was born in 1903.

This quiet life changed completely in 1905, when the political union linking Norway and Sweden was dissolved. The newly independent Norway voted to be a monarchy rather than a republic and Prince Carl was elected King. He changed his name to become King Haakon and his son became Crown Prince Olav. The coronation was held 22 June 1906 in Trondhjem. Princess Maud was now Queen Consort of Norway.

Her wardrobe reflects this sudden change in lifestyle. Not only did Queen Maud need a coronation dress and additional clothes for the events surrounding this important occasion, but for her new role as Queen Consort.



Fashion and Fancy Dress: The Messel Family Dress Collection 1865-2005
22 October 2005 to 5 March 2006

This exhibition chronicles and interprets the clothes worn by six generations of women from one remarkable family. Drawn from a unique collection of garments, never before exhibited, it explores how treasured items of clothing, collected and preserved over time, represent family memory and heritage. A singular artistic and creative eye runs through the six generations encompassing English, Irish, French and Chinese style, and a love of fancy dress. From the 1870s onwards the women of this extended family - Mary Anne, Marion, Maud, Anne, Susan, Alison and today Anna - have fulfilled their social obligations to dress correctly, while demonstrating strong individual style and a gentle aesthetic eccentricity



Grey Activ Ultra


Effective capsules on gray hair. No one can guess how old you are!



You have a problem with erection? Not only you!








Fabric to Fashion
Fri 7 October 2005 to Sun 12 March 2006

Museum of Scotland, Chambers Street, Edinburgh, Scotland -
Level 3

Textiles such as tartan are internationally recognised symbols of Scottish identity. They are, however, not just a relic of the past but a vibrant and dynamic part of twenty-first century Scottish culture. In the new special exhibitions gallery in the Museum of Scotland, explore the creativity and success of Scottish textile firms, the popularity of tartan, tweed and knitwear, and their impact on international fashion.

Discover how designers such as Vivienne Westwood and Alexander McQueen draw on Scottish textiles to create cutting-edge designs and see gorgeous pieces from companies such as Johnstons, Ballantyne Cashmere and Queene and Belle. Other highlights include a suit by Jean Paul Gaultier, a dress by Elizabeth Emanuel in the official Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Tartan, and a pink cashmere top designed by Scott Henshall. Admission Free

Fashion Lives – a new exhibition at the British Library

11 November 2005 – 7 February 2006

The British Library 96 Euston Road London NW1 2DB

"Fashion is not something that exists in dresses only. Fashion is in the sky, in the street; fashion has to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening." Coco Chanel

For the first time at the British Library, Fashion Lives, a new exhibition, has brought together a collection of post-war fashion leaders who have defined their profession and played a unique role in shaping the fashion industry as we know it today. The exhibition, curated by Alistair O'Neill from London College of Fashion (LCF), features exhibition design by St Martin’s graduate William Hall. It includes a specially commissioned repeatable design by fashion duo Eley Kishimoto that will form the backdrop to the exhibition and a series of commissioned portraits by the photographer Gareth McConnell.

John Bates Fashion Designer
14 July 2006 - 28 August 2006


A major fashion retrospective of the work of John Bates, who designed under the name Jean Varon from the 1960s to the 1980s, takes place in July and August 2006 at the Museum of Costume.

John Bates was acknowledged as one of the big four names of British fashion in the 1970s along with Jean Muir, Bill Gibb and Zandra Rhodes. Nowadays, however, his name is less well known amongst the fashion conscious, although ‘Jean Varon’ is a name with which women of a certain age will be familiar. John Bates has not, so far, been acknowledged and celebrated in fashion history. This exhibition will redress this inbalance.




onine exhibition


THE WARHOL :Time capsule 21

online exhibition

Vintage Wisdom - Jo-Anne Lauzer - Savvy Media - www.secondhandsavvy.com

......the following articles are reprinted from  with the kind permission of Jo-Anne, its creator. This very distinctive and imaginative website, for our Canadian bargain hunter counterparts, has a vintage twist. The site boasts a quarterly enzine (free subscription) and we shall be reproducing interesting and relevant articles.


Dear Secondhandsavvy,

I am an interior designer who works in NYC in the design district. This table was originally acquired prior to my being hired. My company keeps inventory of antique and vintage furniture and this piece was found by my boss, abandoned outside our office. Being the collector that he is, my boss brought it up and kept it. When he heard of my appreciation of Marcel Breuer he gave it to me.

I enclosed an overall picture, a close up of one side, and a photo of the tag on the underside which says: "Original Design", "STENDIG", "Made in Finland"     

I am curious of the value of this poor abandoned table. Please see the attached photographs for your study.        

Emily Hogle New York, NY

Dear Emily,

From my research I am guessing that your table is from the 1960's and was imported to the United States by the New York firm "Stendig." They played a key role in raising awareness of modern Scandinavian design by importing furniture from designers (both well-known and some just starting out) from Finland, Denmark, Sweden, and some even from Italy. Stendig is also known for bringing the European look to the mass market in the United States, which was quite different from the "American Modernism." They used to be located at 487 Park Avenue in New York. It is difficult to tell which designer created your piece, as it could have been created by any of the young designers of that generation. But it is a good piece of furniture and is a terrific representation modern Scandinavian design. I would estimate the value to be about $300 to $400 Canadian or $200-$300 U.S.  (£150-180)  However, the value could easily increase over the next few years, as there seems to be a growing enthusiasm for Scandinavian furniture and its nice clean sleek lines--making your table quite the wonderful find. You can also find out more information by checking out a recent publication called: The Sixties, A Decade of Design Revolution by Lesley Jackson.  

Mary Watson, Metropolitan Home, 450 West Hastings St., Vancouver, BC, V6B 1L1
(604) 681-2313 


Dear Secondhandsavvy,

I am helping to clean out my dad's closet and he has a bunch of old ties that look like they are vintage from the 40s and 50s. Can you tell me what ties from that era are worth and if they are considered as collectibles?
Lisa, New Westminster

Dear Lisa,
As a general rule with all vintage items, in relation to their value, they must be graded. Obvious big hints are words like mint, superb, excellent, pristine, and super fantastic. O.K. so the ties are of super fantastic status, what's next? Most 1940's ties seem to all fall within the same size; whereas other
 years (1950's, 1960's and 1970's) can be all over the place. Most 40's babes are between 4" and up to 5", mid-fifties got way down to sometimes smaller than 2" and 60's basically stayed "skinny" or "rockabilly" until the god-awful polyester- loud, proud and measured next to the shroud showed up.

Famous 40's were satin prints, hand-painted silk or satin, nylon/gabardine and even acetate. The colours and designs were very indicative of the times with abstract, nature, naked anything, Atomic, Dali and the kitchen sink. Impressive still were those pale palettes in burgundy, brown's, ochre's and oranges, pale yellow and of course those beautiful hues in green and blue. A particular detail were the JACQUARD'S.

Jacquard is the sublime design on the fabric itself that kind of fell by the wayside with the 50's stitching details. Try to remember the times; even music was a key, 1940's swing to 1950's rockabilly. Don't forget to turn them over; some of the best surprises were in the "behind" so to speak. The "behind" I mentioned is in reference to Peek-a-Boo ties; which often had pin-ups, naked girlie pictures and my latest greatest find, the Japanese version Joy of Sex images that made me swallow before the knot was tied. So look out (and up and around) 'cause you never know just what you may find and depending on the buyer some of these beauties bully quite a bounty, sometimes even a thousand clams, but like I mentioned earlier, I'd have to see them first just to be sure.

Thanks, Suzanne at Pin-Up Vintage.

If you are looking to learn more about ties or other vintage clothing finds, you can reach Suzanne at:

Pin Up Vintage Sales  4406 Main Street (@28th)  Vancouver, British Columbia

I was recently asked to help sell a friend's vintage clothing and was thrilled with all the wonderful pieces that she had collected over the years. Most of the clothing was from the 30s and 40s and included some beautiful dresses and a few unique hats. In particular, there was one hat that stood out. It was crocheted and I could not figure out its purpose. I decided to do some research on it and this is what I found out.

It is called a "boudoir cap" and was popular during the early 1900s to the 1930s. These caps were worn by women to cover "undressed hair" and were often made with delicate materials and exquisitely detailed with every type of trim imaginable. Some women would also wear them to bed as a way to keep their hair in place while they slept. These caps were seen as a way to add "old fashioned femininity to the wardrobe." Although they are highly collectible, there are still many around in excellent condition as not all women chose to wear them. The price varies depending on the detailing, but in general they seem to go from $20 - $65 (£15-£50).

Jo-Anne Lauzer
Savvy Media

Vintage, Retro or Antique...which is it???

Sara says....'I am often asked how I define items as Retro, Vintage or Antique...and in general my yardstick is...that Retro is round about the last 25 years 1975-2000, Vintage is between 1920-1975 and anything before that I classify as Antique!'

We've won an award !!

We are pleased to announce that we have won the 'GROOVY SITE AWARD'!!

This has been awarded by Tenika Morrison, founder and owner of Catching the Butterfly.com Vintage Clothing. The award is given to web sites which are considered to be:

'..informative, fresh and innovative. Cool content and design.....a groovy site!' Thanks Tenika!

Your Photos!!!


Please send us a photo of yourselves all dressed up in your glad rags and handbags, doesn't matter if its an original photo from way back when or a recently taken photo!! We will post them up on this page.......


Yup this is me...

Sara in 1976!



Andrew and Julie in some Attic gear

...all togged out for a 1970's party!!


Here is a photo of Claire and her friends... Vicki, Tracy, Kim and Sarah...

...they love the 1960s and here they are all dressed up ready to go to a mod club!

On the Road at Antiques & Collectors Fairs


Sara's Attic is taking to the road again to exhibit and sell vintage clothing and collectables. Here are the venues for your diaries...

Mostly at Caygill Antiques and Collectors Fair, Sands Centre, Carlisle, Cumbria 9am-4pm check your local press for details...




A recent survey revealed that some women pack as many as 44 items into their handbags! The average bag contains 14 items! Liz Hurley is regularly seen with one of the worlds most expensive handbags; an £8,000 rhinestone encrusted clutch bag by Judith Leiber! While 50% of the women surveyed believe that headache and indigestion tablets are essential items, only 5% carry contraceptives in their handbags, 2% carry a personal alarm and 2% carry an emergency teabag!   source: Daily Express Newspaper.

Book Reviews
 l have been a book buyer, a book seller and I am an avid reader, so l will try and provide you with news and reviews of some great book titles...please send me details of others you feel should be included here!

VINTAGE: The Art of Dressing Up by Tracy Tolkien                

Covering the decades of the 40s to the 90s this is the best source book for fashion and its key moments that I've come across, it's full of photo's, information and written with a wry humour by a vintage enthusiast, who also happens to run a successful shop! She is generous in sharing her expertise which can benefit all those who share the vintage habit and to others who share an interest in fashion and design. Highly recommended !!


MILLERS-Collecting the 1950s by Madeleine Marsh £15.99  

Fashion, household objects and many other collectibles are thoroughly covered in this essential book for all vintage enthusiasts. Hints on values and where to find these incredible items which can still be bought at bargain prices.


MILLERS-Collecting the 1960s by Madeleine Marsh £15.99

Covering fashion, home-style and leisure collectibles such as rock & pop records and memorabilia, books and  toys. This book is required reading for all budding collectors of this decade Bargains can be found from well under £10!.

MILLERS-Collecting the 1970s by Katharine Higgins £15.99            

Now that the 1970s has recently joined the rank of 'vintage' collectibles it is essential to have a book as comprehensive as this one to guide would be collectors on the values of the fashion, household and leisure collectibles from this decade. Many items still found in many homes and attics are practically discussed and displayed to help the enthusiasts source items quickly and easily.




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