Tombstone Cherry Red: A cat-eye watch on 50s & 60s Fashion

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Ignore the desert powder you’ve kicked onto your vintage mary janes and focus on placing perfect dabs of rich cherry red on those lips of yours.  This post is all about marrying tomboy faded jeans and tees with girly high fashion accessories imported all the way from  Milan.

{Mixing pastels with brilliant Spanish reds: (from left to right) Tom Ford Lipstick | a photo of my dad and his 1963 XKE Jaguar taken in 1965 | Prada 2012 shoes | Veneto Clutch & Crossbody}

I couldn’t help but squeal with delight when I came across these photos of my dad taken in the early 60s in Tombstone, Arizona …did I mention he lived on Toughnut street?  This picture below of him and a 1950 Buick was taken in 1960; a time and place where it was all about James Dean, cowboys, polished chrome, pegged pants, tees and white socks.

With so many carousel spins in fashion I open my arms willingly and lovingly to this amazing effortless vintage style.  After all, there’s a reason these are considered American classics:

{Tombstone Cherry Red: (from left to right) Adriano Goldschmied jeans | Little Red Riding Hood bag | Alessandra Ambrosio wearing MAC Ruby Woo lipstick from Posh Couture | Tom Ford eyewear | Stuart Weitzman nude pumps | my Uncle John sporting a white tee, pegged jeans and black frames, Dad in an awesome checkered shirt and always gorgeous, Aunt Pauline hanging out in southern Arizona taken in July of 64}

While European cars were known for their tight box styles; starting in the late 50s to the end of the 60s, huge cars with exaggerated fins and curves were uniquely American and I admire how Prada took these esthetics and redesigned them 50+ years later to retell the story in their own words.

Prada 2012

I continue to have a love-hate relationship with fashion.  Constantly chasing trends, seeing new ones emerge and others fade away; all the while knowing it’s just a matter of time before they are recycled and resurfaced in their newly-shined splendor.  But today will never happen again and tomorrow’s developments and avant-garde ideas are just as necessary as the past’s.  What I love about art the most is the storytelling; the stage, its characters, their lines, costumes and how the story’s meaning depends on when you experience it and who you are at the time.  Art constantly changes and grows along with its audience.   

Football Champions 1963

 

We’ve all heard that fashion is an expression of who we are. Even the act of not caring about fashion is an expression in and of itself.  Keeping this in mind, trends are very much an expression of who we are in society and a reflection of what’s happening in current affairs.  Back then women were expected to fulfill certain limited roles and their ‘feminine’ clothes expressed that. With all these ladylike pleasantries pushed to the side since then it’s lovely to know that it’s a delicious liberty to pull off head to toe traditional girliness without expecting to do so.  

{Thornbill Dress by Karen Walker}

For those women who roll their eyes when they see these feminine outfits; I’m afraid they have most certainly missed that point. I can’t help but think about a stylish friend of mine who recently moved in an adorable polka dot dress. Her hair tossed up in a pony tail, cheeks flushed, eyes matching her light prussian blue dress, she’d occasionally stop to take a swig from her Red Stripe beer while she was unloading the truck. She’s a walking oxymoron right? Isn’t that the whole point? We want to put people in boxes. It makes us feel safe that we can describe them in 100 words or less; however, I’ve rarely met someone I can describe in 100 words or less and if I have I probably didn’t do a very good job getting to know them. In Prada’s case, they reinvented this stereotype with a mischievous tongue-in-cheek undertone that I love!

{Prada 2012 Shoes | 1950s Cadillac | Miu Miu sunglasses | Prada 2012 handbag}

{Urban Oufitters

 

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4 Responses to Tombstone Cherry Red: A cat-eye watch on 50s & 60s Fashion

  1. Jess says:

    The 50s and 60s fashion will always be relevant. I hope!

    As a woman, I am constantly trying to define my femininity and masculinity but what I need to do (and really, what we all need to do) is let go and embrace my inner style, voice and ideas and and let them speak for themselves.

    p.s. love the anthro dress SO much!

  2. Natalie says:

    I love the sexiness of this time and you’ve done an amazing job of capturing it all here. We could definitely draw from the styles of the 50s and 60s since femininity and masculinity were so perfectly combined. Your post has insiped me! Cherry red lipstick and polka dot dress it is!

  3. Michael Kastre says:

    Thanks for bringing back some great memories. I love the way you succinctly capture the time with wonderfully stylish writing.

  4. Veronica – I think having an old car wrapped around you is the best accessory ever! Your Dad’s Jaguar is lovely – my Dad’s 1958 Corvette even curvier and gilded. Did you get to drive his car?

    Loretta

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