Time Travel in a Plaid Skirt

It all started with this skirt….

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And then there was the Fab Collab on plaid that I did with Jodie and the ladies of JTouchofStyle.com.

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I got plaid fever, I tell you!

But seriously, the skirt spoke to me from a place I visit often when I’m looking for thrifted inspiration. You may have heard of it. It’s called eBay.

The skirt is an oldie but a goodie from Anthropologie. It’s by Tracy Reese and is known as the Easy Keeper plaid wool skirt. I’ve created a convenient search route for you on eBay, if you’re interested. Here’s a link.

Transported Through Time

One look at that skirt and I was transported through time. Past the bold plaids of the 60s and 70s.

Plaid dress from the 1960s 1970s.

Beyond the cinched skirts of the 50s, 40s, 30s.

Plaid skirts from the 1940s.
Photo from VintageDancer.com.

All the way to a time when ladies wore 20 pounds of underwear and their posterior shape was defined by a bustle.

Evening dress from 1910.
Not plaid, but oh my, those tiers! Photo from the Victoria & Albert Museum.
Tiered and bustled skirt from 1885. Victoria & Albert Museum.
The tiered skirt on this dress from 1885 is what I had in mind when I saw the skirt I’m wearing. Photo from the Victoria & Albert Museum.

Did anybody else watch the show The Paradise before it got the ax from BBC?

Cast from BBC's The Paradise.
Media shot of the main cast from the BBC series, The Paradise.

Take a look at the swoop on the front of that blue dress! Can you see a similar shape in the “swoop” of my plaid skirt?

Modern Day Victorian

My skirt is quite a bit shorter than those on the examples above. And, of course, it doesn’t have a bustle. But the cut of it — cinched at the waist, swooping, gathered lines — provides visual curve around my hips similar to the feel of those lavish lovelies from way back when.

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Inspired by the era of bustles and tiers and furs and jewels, I created my own little take on a style thought to be long-gone.

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The turtleneck reminds me of the high-necked blouses and jackets from that time period. I bought it at the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale earlier this year. Unlike those blouses and jackets, though, the sleeves on my top have a flirty flourish at the wrists. Here’s a link to a similar style in the same brand.

Back in the day, a lady might have worn a velvet choker with a cameo dangling off it. I went with an amber cameo brooch that I bought a million years ago in Gdansk, Poland. I pinned it below the turtleneck to create the illusion of a dangling pendant.

If you like the look of this brooch, do a search on eBay for amber cameo brooches. For your convenience, I created a link to that search. Click here to check it out.

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For more bling appeal, I added a stack of sparkly bracelets from Dainty Wrist Jewelry. As mentioned in a previous post, the bracelets I get from Dainty Wrist always take an outfit to the next level.

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And finally, the fake fur. It was an Etsy find from a shop called Surf and the City, located right here in the Pacific Northwest.

Both Etsy and eBay have a great selection on vintage and previously owned fake fur shrugs. Here’s a link to a search on eBay.

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Up close, it’s clearly not real fur, but it still makes me feel like royalty (without the guilt of fur) when I drape it around my shoulders. (And it has pockets!)

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This is a look I will wear as the temperatures start to drop. I get warm easily these days, so the faux fur is a little warm for me right now.

Making It Even More Modern (and Casual)

To bring everything down a notch–and to keep from spontaneously combusting while walking to dinner–I switched out the fur to my denim jacket from Nordstrom.

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You’ll be seeing a lot of this jacket in future posts. It’s the perfect layer right now and it just goes with the vibe of such a casual city as Seattle.

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I recently wore this outfit with gray knee-high boots to Black Bottle, a dinner pub Hubby and I like to go to. (Try their Blasted Broccoli! It’s addicting!)

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Do you see the Victorian influence in this outfit? What other influences do you pick up on? Is this a look you would wear?


Affiliate link disclaimer: Please note, some of the items linked may be affiliated with companies I am associated with, like eBay and Nordstrom. By clicking the affiliated links and purchasing from those stores, I might receive a small commission. By purchasing from these stores, you support the work I do here and I greatly appreciate your support! 

  • Of course I love plaid, but I think the best feature about this fabulous skirt is the colors. It’s not just an orange plaid kept safe with browns & ivories. It has that purple & green & burgundy in it that makes it so lovely!! I would wear this skirt in a second!!!
    And the brooch—another one of my recent faves! I used to think they were too old fashioned for me, but I love how the styles are back with a vengeance!! There are just so many ways to wear them!!
    I know I always seem to gush lately, Sherry, but I truly love everything about this outfit!
    And does this mean we get to go to Black Bottle? I’ve seen your restaurant love on FB recently and I want to try them all—ha ha!
    XOXO,
    jodie
    http://www.jtouchofstyle.com

    • Thank you, lovely Jodie!! ❤️❤️❤️ Your comments mean so much to me!

      And it’s funny that you asked if we could go to Black Bottle while you’re here because Mike actually said, “We should bring Jodie and Rob here” when we were there last time. We’re always planning!! Would you be up for a 5 course vegan wine dinner? That meal we had last night was the best food I’ve had in ages! It’s not fru-fru vegan–it’s hardcore hearty and delicious!

      Hugs,
      Sherry

      • We absolutely love wine dinners! We’ve decided one of the reasons it’s so nice is because we don’t have to make the decisions on what to order—talk about lazy, right?
        And we love all food—meat, non meat, vegan! As long as it takes good—we’re in! (Truly, the only thing I”ve heard Rob said he doesn’t want to eat lately is crickets—but I bet with the right chef, they’d be delicious!)
        XOXO

        • Ha ha ha! I can’t think of anywhere I could take you in Seattle where you might eat crickets. It may exist, but I wouldn’t know where it is. The wine dinner at Harvest Beat is so good that we’re planning on doing it once a quarter–it’s a lot of food, so we don’t want to do it more often than that! Gotta keep our girlish figures, you know! 😀

  • Yes I’d wear it! : P I *almost* bought that skirt when it was at Anthro, before my love of all things thrifted kicked in. The skirt looks amazing on you. I liked it for all the same details you pointed out. It is just one of those really great totally unique colourful Anthro pieces that are harder to find nowadays.

    Your outfit is a wonderful nod and a wink to style of the past. Just the way it should be.

    I’m seriously jealous of a 5 course vegan dinner! Ya bums!

    bisous
    Suzanne

    • Suzanne, next time you’re in BC, head down to Seattle and we’ll go to that vegan restaurant. It was seriously the best meal I’ve had in a million years!

      – Sherry

    • I really like your blog since I am the exact size of you & not many petite blogs over 40 out there – hooray you are help to help us petite ladies over 40! Thanks for sharing – would love to see new hair styles for petites too if you ever have time to ponder that one. 🙂

    • Yes, Laurie! Paradise was very similar to Selfridge. BBC cancelled Paradise because of the similarities and because Selfridge got better ratings. But I still loved the costumes and the strong female character of Paradise. If you get a fake fur from eBay, I hope you’ll post about it on your blog!! ❤️

  • Definitely Victorian, of course, but once you threw on the denim jacket, I immediately felt it exuded such a punk feel, you know? All that was needed was perhaps a change of footwear and you’d be insta-ready 🙂 speaking of brooches, it’s so funny. I used to think of them as dated pieces of metal until I was in my late 30s, and fell in love with Victorian mourning jewellery. Since then, I’ve collected a few but NEVER ever used any. Time to change things up, huh xoxo

    • I can see what you mean about the punk feel! Imagine it with a black motorcycle jacket and lace-up boots, right?

      I would love to see a post with your Victorian mourning jewelry, Sheela! Of anyone I know, you could make it have a whole new look and feel.

      – Sherry

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