What to wear, what to wear?!

What to wear… what to wear.

HOLY COW it’s less than a week till Drosselmeyer!! It’s been quite a journey and we couldn’t have done it without the help and support of our community. But let’s talk about the really important topic at hand: what will we WEAR??!!

Question 1: do I have to dress up? Answer: Hells yes! What fun is going into a mysterious vintage night club to pretend you’re in 1939 if you’re wearing jeans and a t-shirt? You want to look the part! And a collared shirt won’t kill you, I promise. Here are some suggestions for how to proceed!


In my opinion, a tux is always appropriate. If men wore tuxes on the subway and to the library, I think it would be a better world all around. What are you worried about? That you’ll look too handsome? Too dashing? There is no man that a tux does not look good on and tuxes are the quickest, easiest amazing thing you’ll ever wear. 

You won’t be out of place, there will be many tuxes at Club Drosselmeyer. So if you have one, wear it, you won’t regret it. If you don’t have one, they cost like $50 to rent, which is absolutely worth the price for the stress it will save you. 

Step 1: Go to the place- any place. A million places rent tuxes: http://boston.cbslocal.com/top-lists/boston-areas-best-places-to-rent-a-tux/

Step 2: Give them $50 and they’ll find a perfect tux of any color or shape or size

Step 3: Don’t worry about anything at all and look completely dapper and elegant for a night

Another “don’t worry” option is none other than Mr. Vintage. Talk to Jason Volk, the head of the greater Boston Vintage Society, our costumer and owner of quite a stockpile of vintage menswear. gbvintagesociety@gmail.com. You guys can talk about it and he’ll hook you up. 

If you want to do it on your own, a few rules that may help:

  • Bowties rather than regular ties make any outfit look special.
  • A vest over your collared shirt will also look special.
  • Suspenders are fun.
  • There’s no excuse for not having a collared shirt!
  • Goodwill is amazing- you can buy a full vintage-y outfit for $10 and give it back the next day. If you find any variation of suit pants + a vest + suspenders + a bowtie + a collared shirt + formal shoes, you’re pretty much fine. 
  • Don’t sweat the details of how buttons are supposed to be in 1939 or whether you could wear black shoes or brown shoes


I think two big things make a lady’s outfit look vintage;

  1. Hemlines are always below the knee. Knee-height or above-the-knee may be a gorgeous dress but it won’t look actually vintage. (even flappers- really!)
  2. Shirts all have collars. Dresses, if they don’t have collars, have a lot of detail around the collars. 

This is my FAVORITE site, which gives some great details on how to play vintage dress-up: http://vintagedancer.com/1930s/women-1930s-fashion/

Take a look and see what you think!! You’re most likely looking for evening wear, though day wear will do in a pinch (My character, Kit Hollingsworth, will be in “professional day wear” since she’s reporting on the club.) 


It’s late to order something from Modcloth, I know- but honestly I find that online vintage shopping is a bit of a crap shoot anyways, you never know what you’ll get. This is what I do:

  1. Pick a base and a color. Usually it’s a dress I already wear as long as it’s below the knee. That color will help me find/match other stuff
  2. Dress it up! Accessories are what make this fun- you can’t have too much costume jewelry, fake fur, hats, stockings, lipstick, make it awesome! This is dress-up after all. 

Things to add:

  • STOCKINGS! you can go to Teddy’s shoes and get those cool “cuban heel” stockings or find fishnet stockings of all colors. Buffalo exchange in Davis always has fun stockings. 
  • HATS! you can never go wrong with hats. Turbans are incredible because it means you don’t have to do your hair. You can usually find turbans and fascinators at Boston Costume
  • RED LIPSTICK! Seriously, red lipstick will change your life. Red lipstick and red nails and you just went from everyday to “I’m ready for my closeup Mr. DeMille”
  • GLOVES!! You can usually find gloves at Goodwill, Boston Costume or places like Raspberry Beret.

Again, Goodwill always has awesome stuff. Don’t worry about making it real vintage from the 1930’s, those dresses are really hard to find and the fabric is super delicate because it’s almost 100 years old. 80’s styles loved 30’s and 40’s fashion so 80’s does 40’s is usually a good bet. If you’d like to get a little more fancy, try somewhere like Raspberry Beret on Mass Ave in Cambridge. The ladies there will help you find something that works. The folks at Bobby’s of Boston I also find to be super helpful. And you can also try Mr. Vintage, Jason Volk. Most of my favorite vintage accessories come from Jason, so give him a call if you’re in a pinch. He’ll help you rent or buy something cool: gbvintagesociety@gmail.com.

As for hair!!! Vintage hair is so great and can be so painful to try and execute. If you have the chance to get your hair done at a salon, I’d take it. You’ll look amazing and for $50 it will save you much personal agony. These were days when women spent TIME on their hair. They went to the salon once a week to have it done. They slept on pincurls. If a salon not an option, youtube will be happy to make you crazy with tutorials that look “easy”. A few quick tips: Up will look more authentic than down. One can never have to many bobby pins. And be sure to have a really good hat on hand if you give up.


So just pretend like you’re playing dress up and remember, if it’s not fun, you’re not doing it right!!


Kellian (Aka: Kit Hollingsworth, reporter at large.)