Recently we got the opportunity to interview Angela of Capricorn Vintage. I beleive I first met Angela on the vintage clothing discussion boards on EBAY. She has many things in common with me, being an artist, a love of vintage swimwear as well as being a fabulous vintage seller.
Tell us a bit about yourself.
I'm a nostalgic girl in every way, which is how I got to where I am today. I love all things vintage & antique, old Hollywood glamour, Turner Classic Movies, rhinestones, glitter and sparkle. I was born and raised in Indiana and I love it here! I live here with my husband, 2 step-daughters and 2 kitty cats.
You have a brick and mortar store as well as selling on line. Do you have a preference?
The town that my store is in is pretty small, so I have my regular customers, but vintage is not super popular here. I have had my shop for 3 years. I love my little shop, meeting people in person and getting to see them try things one. But I really enjoy selling online, and I have for 11 years. I get to offer my things to a larger audience and find good homes for them all over the world! It's a lot of work, but I love it.
What type of clientele do you focus on?
I don't have a typical client I am thinking of, just anyone who loves vintage!
Can you describe your process for selecting items for your store?
I like to think of myself as a "vintage personal shopper" for someone I haven't met yet. Online, I am mostly known for 40s and 50s items with a bit of 60s. In my shop, I get to carry 70s & 80s also. If something catches my eye, keeping in mind condition, and I can see a gal rockin' it, I go for it!
You have a virtual swimsuit museum on your website, how did that get started? Are all of the pieces from your collection?
When I created my website (currently in the middle of being stocked!) I had just sold a large portion of my vintage swimsuit collection. I thought it would be a nice place to put pictures of them, for study and collectors. Almost all of the suits in the museum are sold. I do need to photograph my current (smaller) collection, but I am always too busy photographing things for selling! Someday I will.
Do you have a favorite swimwear brand and or era? Why?
I don't really have a favorite brand, but I just LOVE swimsuits from the 40s and 50s. I love 2 piece suits from the 40s with the bra tops and high waisted shorts/skirts. I think the suits from the 50s are my favorite, because they are so glamorous and make an hourglass girl (or any girl!) look amazing. They fit like no other. Really, there are many great modern reproductions of 50s bombshell suits, but you just can't touch the way a real one fits!
What other blogs do you read that you think would be of interest to the vintage community?
I read many, but I do go to retrorenovation.com daily! My house was built in 1947 and is decorated in all 40s and 50s, so I get ideas and love to see everyone else's homes there.
What do you feel is the biggest misconception about vintage fashion?
Everyday that I wear a vintage dress, I get compliments, but then the person will say "I wish I could wear things like that!". You can! I also think that many people think that you have to wear head to toe, they don't get that you can mix vintage in with your modern pieces. Think a pretty 40s blouse with nice pants for work, or a beaded cardigan sweater. Start with a rhinestone pin on your modern jacket, and work your way up! Also, I constantly hear customers in my shop say, it's all so tiny! They don't even look, they see one dress & just assume. I have to tell them to really take a look, and try on things. There are all different sizes, and you can find an era that suits your body type and go with it. Remember, most of those prom dresses were worn by 15 and 16 year old girls! They weren't done growing yet! :)
Which designer(s) gives you inspiration?
Gilbert Adrian has always given me inspiration from the first time I saw "The Wizard of Oz" when I was a little girl. Now that I am an adult, and have studied his work, I can enjoy the other beautiful things that he did. I also love Elsa Schiaparelli and am totally enchanted by Bes Ben hats. Modern designers? John Galliano & Alexander McQueen. Can you tell I like fanciful, imaginative, artistic things?
What do you collect?
A lot! Vintage clothing of course! I wear 40s and 50s and have a deep love for the charming cotton house dresses of the era. I LOVE a novelty print, and I wear them often. I don't keep anything that doesn't fit or flatter me. It's not fair! Wonderful vintage dresses need to be out and about on a lovely gal, not just sitting in my closet. I also collect vintage jewelry, especially bracelets. I love thermoset bracelets, those plastic chain necklaces from the 40s, and novelty things. I won't even go into my household items! I love 40s and 50s, and have an obsession with atomic 50s lamps and all things aqua and turquoise.
When you aren't working on your store, how do you spend your time?
It seems like I am always doing something that has to do with vintage clothing, but I love to go to antique stores & flea markets to look for things for my house. I love to be outdoors, I love nature and gardening & my kitties. I spend time with my family and friends. I love going on road trips with my friends! I wish I could do that more often.