Our fabulous Vintage Queen number 43 takes her inspiration from the Forties and Fifties. An accomplished dressmaker, swing dancer and vintage stylist, Miriam’s life evolves around past influences and inspirations. We just wish we had been this stylish when we were 19!

“My name is Miriam Parkman, I’m 19 years old and I live in Stockholm, Sweden. I’m originally from a small town called Härnösand in northern Sweden, but moved here in August. Stockholm is such a fantastic city! It’s small and cosy,even though it’s a capital city. I love the cafés and houses from the Forties and Fifties, my apartment is from the mid-century, and it’s got its original kitchen left, I adore it!

This year, I’ve decided work instead of studying further about tailoring and traditional handicraft. So, I work at a Swedish kids clothing shop, which is fun and a perfect job for right now. It’s not full time, which is even more perfect, since I spend most of my free time at Chicago, Sweden’s best swing dance studio and club.

There I take lessons in Charleston, Authentic Jazz, Balboa and Lindy Hop, and each Wednesday and Saturday night I go there for social dancing all night long. I meet my friends, listen to good music, dance til’ my feet hurt and have a great time.

I’m very interested in sewing and styling, so I have some projects that I do beside my real work. For example, I’m helping a friend who’s a burlesque dancer to find clothes and shoes for a 3-minute video she’s making. Next year I’m planning to continue with my studies in textile handicraft here in Stockholm or maybe in Borås, in the south of Sweden where they have a very famous and well known fashion school. It’s either that or opening an authentic Forties/Fifties café! We’ll see…

I love vintage because it’s me. It’s what I like, what I feel best in and how I like to live my life.  My mum has always brought me and my sisters to flea markets and charity shops, and talked about the importance of saving old things, and it grew on me. My favourite time periods is late Thirties-mid Forties and the early Fifties.

Even though wartime was hard times it seemed a lot of fun too. My grandma was a nurse in Finland during WW2, and she always said that “if they wouldn’t have been able to joke and laugh, they never would have survived the war.” Today we are just so used to everything. We’ve seen everything, we have everything and barely anything is new and exciting.

When it comes to vintage clothes, I just love the style. It’s personal and creative, since you had to use your imagination for dressing up in wartimes, and it’s so delicately feminine and stylish.

Pictures I find inspiring are the early André de Dienes pictures of Norma Jean Baker before she became Marilyn, pictures of stars such as Betty Grable, Rita Hayworth and Ginger Rogers, ads in old magazines and pictures of lind hopping kids at the Savoy etc.  And of course, old movies are great inspiration!

I mix vintage garments with those I make myself and some new stuff. My wardrobe is getting better and better! If I could afford to only by vintage I would, but I can’t, which is why I have to use my imagination.”

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