Vintage Queen no 72: Colleen from the USA Our amazing Vintage Queen number 72 is a vintage eclectic – mixing different decades for a unique style blend of various decades. We love her glamour, immaculate hair & make-up and perfectly blended take on past looks. My name is Colleen and I currently live in Providence, Rhode Island. By day I am a research nerd, but I spend my evenings promoting an event for vintage enthusiasts called Speakeasy, and of course shopping for and wearing vintage clothing I have always had a flair for fashion from “before my time.” I loved wearing my mother’s Sixties and Seventies satin slips and robes to play “dress up” as a young child of five or so. I started thrift shopping in high school, aiming for a dark Victorian look, and amassed quite a collection of black velvet and lace. Vintage clothes appealed to me because of their implicit back story and uniqueness, and because I’m a fancier dresser who misses the hats, gloves, and other lovely formalities of days gone by. After losing a significant amount of weight recently, the world of vintage really opened up to me because now I can find so much more in my size. This has led me to experiment more with cuts, color, and pattern. I get so inspired seeing all the ways different vintage style bloggers and the ‘vintage queens’ style themselves! I also love the experience of vintage shopping – the textures, the construction, the cuts – and as a true bargain hunter, I love my $5 dresses as much or more than the pricier pieces I own. Wearing vintage has also connected me with older relatives and friends who’ve held onto their vintage, and some of my most amazing pieces were gifts from them, including all my fur pieces that go back to the Forties My passion for the past also inspired me to co-create Speakeasy, which I run with my partner Delsin. We play music from the late 1800s up through the Fifties as well as modern revival versions of older music, and have burlesque performers and live bands. Not only is it a great excuse to dress up, but it’s a fun time, and we donate a portion of proceeds to charity. We also have a blog at www.speakeasyri.com where we cover other local vintage events and shops as a resource for the community. I have to say that I have met so many lovely, talented and interesting people in the vintage scene and that motivates me to stay involved. Plus I always want to see what everyone’s wearing! If I were to describe my style I would call it “vintage eclectic.” More often than not I mix my periods – one outfit I wore included my Forties mink stole, a Fifties red velvet dress, a Sixties veiled hat, and a Seventies clutch purse – but I find ways to make it all look cohesive. I often giggle at all the compliments I get on how “authentic” I look! Sometimes I go for an all over vintage look, and other times I play with color or pattern and mix in vintage inspired pieces to make it a little more modern. But you will never find me in sweatpants (outside of the gym) or with hair not immaculately set! 3 Responses Toria May 17th, 2010 I love Colleen’s hair! (and style) And the Speakeasy sounds like such a fab idea, pity I live too far away to visit. Tonia May 17th, 2010 She looks amazing: well done her for ditching the weight! Lilac May 24th, 2010 Wow that last pic is stunning. Love the leopard print!