Stuff I currently love with a few musings thrown in.
(Image: the bag of bags, Mary-Kate Olsen's Hermes Kelly 32)
Overpacked, generously proportioned handbags with scuffs and patina are the chicest. You'll never change my mind. Think Jane Birkin clutching her namesake, loaded with everything but the kitchen sink; Mary-Kate Olsen’s Kelly 32 covered in scratches with a packet of cigarettes in the pocket; Mischa Barton's jumbo Chanel flap bag; a vintage, well loved LV Neverfull. Bags that are used over and over until they literally drop to bits. The stories they could tell, the floors they’ve sat on... And this isn't even specifically 'it girl' designer bags - vintage and second hand handbags in general just have that magic. Nearly all of my own bags are second hand.
We love outfit repeating and buying quality over quantity, so we really hope to see a shift away from micro bags and other impractical fads/micro trends (that ultimately suck you into consuming more) in favour of practicality and repetition. I like bags Mary Poppins style - capable of carrying everything!
Image: 3 of my oldest bags, all showing signs of wear, tear & enjoyment.
(Images: John Galliano for Dior FW07; Vivienne Westwood 'Voyage to Cythera' catsuit FW89; Miu Miu 2008; Claudette Colbert)
The harlequin has been a source of inspiration for many 20th Century designers and is a reoccurring theme within collections. Often in palettes of bright colours, it evokes the humour of the circus and pageantry of Venetian masquerade balls. From Vivienne Westwood to Miu Miu, we've seen interpretations sashay down the runway, delighting us every time and the character is one of Medley's favourite design references. Ruffles and harlequin prints pop up from time to time off runway, more toned down and every day. I think as we move away from trend-led style and into the era of experimentation and individuality, we'll see more bold takes on avant garde, theatrical fashion and clowncore.
Image: Medley's 1988 YSL Rive Gauche Harlequin Jacket; ruffle from a 1960's clown costume.
I talked about this on Instagram a lot last year, but I’m really into 50s vintage again. Breaking it down, the fabrics are always interesting and durable, the prints designs are wearable, the decidedly feminine silhouettes always work, and the dresses have a uniquely Disney princess vibe. I also think 50s dresses are an interesting juxtaposition against popular contemporary aesthetics like athleisure, steampunk, western etc.
(Image: A pair of 1950's dresses from Medley Premium SS23)
HANGING ON THE RAILS
A long break away from Medley was just the ticket as now I can appreciate my stock with fresh eyes. I started 'Into It' as a visual mood board to share things that are inspiring me and my creative direction for the month; everything is intrinsic to my personal style, the vintage I source and the clothing I design. Each volume of Into It will showcase 2 pieces from my rails - something old and something new. Old being something that's been on the rail a while. New being something fresh or from a future collection.
Continuing with the clowncore theme, I've chosen this punchy 80s Louis Feraud blouse. It's giving Deco-era, Sonia Delauney meets Clarice Cliff with a hint of circus. Love it.
1980s Louis Feraud Silk Blouse UK 14, £45
Keeping things bright, I've picked this incredible 1960s floor length dress. The print is a geometric design in shades of orange and the collar is embellished with sequins. A real show stopper that will be listed online very soon. Email or DM me on Instagram to enquire.
1960s Embellished Maxi Dress UK 14, £75
January is never dry. Here's my drinks order for Volume 1.
4-6 green olives, pitted
25ml of olive brine
150ml London dry gin
25ml dry vermouth
Refrigerate your martini glass. Pour brine, gin and vermouth into mixer and add ice. Shake well. Pour into martini glass. Add cocktail stick with 2-3 olives. Enjoy.
Well that's it for my first Volume of Into It for 2023. Thanks for reading and don't forget to sign up to my mailing list via the Medley Website to hear about all things Medley and receive exclusive offers for my online shop.
The next issue will publish online in a few weeks and I'll have more news about my 2023 collections.
Lots of love,