I was going through the racks at one of my favorite vintage stores, Olives, yesterday evening. They had this beautifully tailored high-waisted white skirt made of some kind of satiny wool, with a front panel flanked with sculpted gold buttons, and a milky silk lining. I believe it was from the ’50s or ’60s, and I forget the brand, but it was gorgeous and they were selling it for $295 (and then at a 30% discount–the whole store’s currently on sale, visit if you’re in the area). That’s a lot for a skirt, especially a vintage skirt. But the craftsmanship was flawless. It was like architecture. Everything about it was perfect–there was nothing you needed to go out and buy to accompany it. You’d buy it, wear it, take it off, hang it in your closet, dry clean it sometimes, wear it, REPEAT infinitely. Which reminded me how angry I get about how shittily some clothes are made today.
Decently fancy women’s clothes today–items that cost more than $200, sometimes more than $400–are often made so sloppily, so shoddily, and yet no one’s taking them to task. Dresses and skirts rarely come with liners or built-in slips anymore (or, less frequently), and often they’re just a transparent sheet of gauze that somehow they’ve justified can cost hundreds of dollars. I mean, they’re often gorgeous, and people keep buying them, but I don’t get it. For hundreds of dollars, couldn’t these designers try to make dresses that stand alone? So you don’t have to go out and buy slips and tank tops and whatever for clothes that cost $395? Can’t ten of those dollars go to attaching a mediocre liner?
But I guess they don’t have to, because, again, people still buy them. But seriously. So flimsy! I could crush these clothes.