We'll go out on a limb here and assume that the vintage fashion show at The Sweet Life at Rosehill on Sunday won't elicit such an impassioned reaction. But when we stopped by to peruse the racks, we were pleasantly surprised by how relevant the selections are to the style sensibilities of the moment.
The collection belonged to Pauline Smith, who lived at the Shawnee elder-care facility for the last decade of her life. A seamstress and dress designer who worked in the middle of the last century for an exclusive women's shop on the Country Club Plaza, she and her husband gathered turn-of-the-20th-century vintage items from the attics of old stores and used them to accompany antique-car exhibitions. When Smith died a year ago, her daughter Susie donated part of the clothing to The Sweet Life.
That multi-era portion includes pieces for men (linen jackets perfectly suited for a party at Gatsby's) and children (tweed coats with matching short pants, white eyelet dresses). But, predictably, it's the women's stuff we love: Edwardian leg-of-mutton sleeves and corset tops, skirts with overlapping tiers of handmade lace, a velvet jacket with covered buttons. Laid out on tables in front of the racks are hats fitted with beads and feathers, full-length gloves and tiny tatted purses. Sure, the venue might seem strange -- but we prefer to consider it unexpected.
Marc Jacobs would understand that.