Dressing like Joan, Betty and Peggy
September 19, 2010 8:33 AM   Subscribe

Help me find classic, vintage inspired (but not costume-y or actually used), work appropriate dresses, skirts and tops. Online okay, Toronto preferred, must ship to Canada and preferably allows returns for cash (not just in store credit).

This past summer has become, as my friends and colleagues termed it, "Elkerette's Summer of the Mad Men Dress." It started so innocently with a really cute dress I found online. When I received it and a) it was still cute and b) it fit me exactly, I became a convert to online shopping for these sorts of dresses.

So far my collection of stores selling this type of product is limited:


Pretty Things Boutique
Shabby Apple
Heartbreaker Fashion

Mefites - surely there are more places out there which are producing clothes like these. Won't you please share them with me?

So that you get a sense of what I have been loving:

The Super Spy Dress
The Portrait Collar Grey Dress
The Vanessa Dress
The Upper East Side
posted by elkerette to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (8 answers total) 57 users marked this as a favorite
Modcloth has some good things that you might like. I just got this dress a few weeks ago, and it's pretty great!
posted by bewilderbeast at 8:37 AM on September 19, 2010 [1 favorite]

Have you been to Anthropologie? I'd start there, a lot of their pieces are very vintage-y. (And you're lucky enough to have one in Toronto)
posted by OLechat at 8:40 AM on September 19, 2010

Damzels, though I'm not sure about their return policy. Their sales and parties are fantastic, too - get on the email list.
posted by peagood at 8:41 AM on September 19, 2010

Oh! And, just walking through Eaton Centre the other night (and Anthropologie last night), I saw so many stores had retro-inspired dresses featured that I determined that a good investment in them this year would save me years of searching in the future, since that's been my style whether or not it's currently in fashion, and vintage pickings get slimmer every year. I think it was Femme de Carriere that had a particularly nice dress in the window, and I've never once considered shopping there before.

Oh - and the brand you may like most at Damzels is Stop Staring.
posted by peagood at 8:53 AM on September 19, 2010

Seconding ModCloth. I was apprehensive about ordering online from a shop that doesn't photograph their clothes on models or reveal much about the original designer/manufacturer*. But I just ordered a skirt and Love It. Users typically leave comments with information about fit, and the whole thing seems to be set up to allow for easy returns.

*Most ModCloth clothes aren't in-house brands but clothes from third party labels. You can get a lot of the things they carry on other sites, or even in local boutiques.
posted by Sara C. at 8:57 AM on September 19, 2010

This doesn't exactly answer your question, but have you thought of sewing your own clothes using vintage patterns? That's a great way to get the look you want, plus will probably be better made and better fitting than anything you can get off the rack. My favorite vintage sewing blog is Gertie's New Blog for Better Sewing. Sew Retro is a great resource too.

Check out regular department stores too. I also got into the Mad Men look pretty big this summer too, which seems to be pretty popular because that style is all over the department stores. I was able to find several vintage-looking pencil skirts at JC Penney, of all places. With the right blouse they look super Joan Holloway-ish!
posted by apricot at 9:10 AM on September 19, 2010

Brava on queen St. used to sell vintage, but now sells vintage-inspired new clothes. they're really nice, too
posted by 5_13_23_42_69_666 at 1:08 PM on September 19, 2010

I saw some of this line in a shop in portland & was impressed by the cut and tailoring. looks like the "charm" dress has that early sixties look you long for. dunno if they ship to canada ... not clear on website.
posted by Rube R. Nekker at 10:29 PM on September 20, 2010

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