Shopping vintage for Barbie

Barbie fashion clothing vintage

There’s a great deal of appeal in ‘vintage’ clothing. I recently attended a fantastic talk by author Maggie Alderson, whose latest novel, Shall We Dance?, is set in a vintage clothing store. Alderson spoke about the appeal of ‘vintage’ (which sounds so much better than ‘second-hand’) and concluded that vintage fashion comes with automatic cache as your piece is usually a true one-of-a-kind. Barbie is a modern girl who also likes to shop vintage.

Drop by the Tiny Frock Shop for fabulous pre-loved vintage clothes for dolls. Owner Pamela Thompson has something to suit every doll with pieces ranging from “mid twentieth century to present“. Some of the pieces are mass produced, others homemade. You can shop by colour, pattern or just browse through the racks and see what you stumble upon, op-shop style. There’s everything from wedding dresses and harem pants to leatherette jackets and shoes. Plus, as only a Barbie fan can appreciate, there’s a whole section devoted to jumpsuits.

A lot of the pieces reminded me very much of my own Barbie’s wardrobe which consisted of a few genuine Barbie outfits and a lot of individual pieces purchased at school fetes, hand sewn (and in some cases crocheted) by women expert at tailoring for a tiny, demanding customer.

Some of the pieces start at just fifty US cents, others are as much as US$15.00, depending on their vintage status. Tiny Frock Shop only ships within the US but try contacting them directly if you really, really fall in love with a piece – I don’t think my daughter’s Barbie can live without the navy spotted seventies dinner-party dress.

vintage Barbie fashions

vintage Barbie fashions

Katrina Whelen

Katrina studied planning and design, did the hard yards working in a big office building and then traded it all in for a relaxing (!) life at home with four children. She now fills her time with writing, completing a degree in genetics and taxiing her children around Melbourne to their various sporting commitments (not necessarily in that order).

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