Feeling Fancy With Emmy Design Sweden

Emmy Design are a vintage-reproduction brand, based in Sweden. Founded by Emmy Nilsson, the label focuses on producing high-quality, timeless garments with a strong emphasis on feminine style, cutting garments in sizes from a UK 6 up to a UK 24. I have been a fan of the company for a while, initially I fell in love with their marvellous cardigans – which are actually cropped to sit on the waist; hurrah! Looking beyond the gorgeous knitwear, they also produce garments that are a perfect mixture of vintage-inspired smart daywear. Oddly, I find many vintage reproduction labels seem to omit this category of clothing, choosing instead to focus on evening wear or occasion wear.

At the start of last week, I was thrilled to find an email from Emmy drop into my inbox, asking if I would like to review their Miss Fancy Pants Slacks and Sassy Suspenders. This style of trouser is TOTALLY the style I would usually go for, so of course I was more than happy to accept. Even more wonderfully, the trousers and suspenders actually dropped through my letterbox on my birthday, which added to the excitement of the day (although to be honest I had a bit of a ‘birthday blip’ this year..  and still feel a bit weird about it, but hey-ho).

Sizing

I am 5ft 6″, BUT – I have a pretty long body and rather short legs. Now, because of my long torso I have to ensure I check the rise measurements of trousers or any ‘all-in-one’ garments, to check it will be long enough and feel comfortable. For these trousers, I decided to choose the size based on the rise measurement, rather than the waist and hip. So, I went for the size 36, as the rise measurement is quoted as 78cm, with my actual rise measuring 77cm. This means that the waist and hip are perhaps a bit looser on me than the design intends, but I feel that the trousers fit perfectly. The fabric has a bit of stretch, so absolutely could be worn tighter, I just prefer to wear things looser than needed. The inside leg measures 30.5inches, with a good few inches seam allowance on the inside to let them down if needed. But, as I have short little legs, I took these trousers up to have a finished inside leg of 28inches.

The fabric is a polyester spandex mix, which allows the trousers to hang and drape beautifully. As much as I love wool fabric, I have to say that in trousers it drives me around the bend! I have a pair of trousers (not by Emmy but by another repro brand) that contain wool, and my skin is so sensitive that the wool just makes me sit and itch.

The style of these trousers is so flattering, I love the super high waist! They also have pockets, so I have somewhere to put my awkward hands, hurrah! The Sassy Suspenders are really great quality, they even come packaged in a lovely box, making them perfect to give as a gift. It’s really great to find suspenders (or braces as we call them in England) that have buttonholes, rather than clips to attach to clothing. They are adjustable with a sturdy clasp – and – they have lots of length in them, perfect for my long body!

The Miss Fancy Pants Slacks are available in brown salt & pepper (the fabric I went for), black twill, black pinstripe, navy pinstripe and brown pinstripe. The Sassy Suspenders are available in brown striped (the ones I chose), black & white or navy. View Emmy’s main website here. As mentioned at the start of this post, I was given the opportunity to choose a pair of the Miss Fancy Pants Slacks, and a pair of the Sassy Suspenders to review here on my blog. As ever, all opinions are my own, and are my honest thoughts and opinions.

Also, you may have noticed I got my hair cut! It was on a bit of a whim, and I am still getting used to it, and how to style it.

Until next time dears!

A Modern Magazine for Old Fashioned People

A little while ago, Mat got in touch with me and asked me if I would like to review his latest venture; In Retrospect magazine. I have been aware of the magazine for about a year, indeed the magazine started life as an online publication back in May last year.

Being one of those people that loves nothing better than sitting down with a good magazine or novel; accompanied by a deliciously hot cup of tea, I of course assented to his request with zest!

I already had issues 1 & 2, so Mat sent me issues 3 & 4 to complete my collection and get me up-to-date (which of course also helps me to assemble this review with a greater deal of accuracy for you dear readers!)

The ethos of the magazine is: ‘A Modern Magazine for Old Fashioned People’. That is to say, if you are interested in any aspect of vintage, (including, but not exclusive to, fashion) be it transport, furniture, culture, re-enacting, music and dance; then you shall find something within the pages of In Retrospect to suit you. This is where I feel In Retrospect magazine definitely stands out against other publications of the vintage genre.

Regular features include:

  • In Focus Debates – past debates have included ‘Born in the Wrong Era?’ and ‘Are the 90’s Vintage?’
  • Fashion spread – typically 10 pages per issue
  • In Fashion Spotlight on Reproduction Brands – past brands featured include ‘Bow & Crossbones’ & ‘Dovima’
  • In Focus – Photography spotlight
  • In History – features on fashion history, biographies of movie stars, cooking, etc
  • In The Pink – holidays & locations
  • In Style – past features have included ‘The evolution of the 20th century dress shirt’ and ‘A history of men’s underwear’
  • In Person – interviews with people ‘on the scene’ – performers, singers, burlesque
  • In Style – fashion, sewing & knitting tips, hair & make-up
  • In The Know – upcoming events, book reviews, television

As well as having great content, the magazine also holds an aesthetic charm. A good sturdy A4 size, the cover is matt finish, whilst the inner pages are a lovely glossy 100gsm (and it has that terrific ‘new magazine smell’; which I love!)

Whenever a magazine releases two size versions, I always go for the larger size. For example, I believe Marie Clare sometimes offer their magazine in a standard A4, and a ‘travel’ size. Whilst I acknowledge the convenience of a smaller size, to me it just feels better to have an A4 magazine. So on that score, In Retrospect definitely gets a big thumbs-up!

Each issue is around 100-125 pages, which is more than enough to keep you reading for a good while.

 In Retrospect really succeeds in knowing what it’s readership will be interested in, and presents a good, rounded selection of articles and features in each issue. I believe part of it’s success, is the fact that the magazine is created and written by actual vintage enthusiasts. People who genuinely love the vintage lifestyle, have a fascination and a passion for eras gone by. All the articles and features appear very well researched and written to me, indeed some of the writers are fellow bloggers who you may be familiar with already – Gemma Seager of Retro Chick, Theodora Burrow of Theodora Goes Wild, G M Norton of Norton of Morton, and many more.

Articles which I particularly enjoyed, include Shona Van Beers (yes, the founder of Heyday! clothing) feature on ‘Cool Comfort – how beach pyjamas helped make trousers acceptable as women’s wear’, and Katrina Simpson’s ‘Murder Abroad – a new twist on an old favourite’ in which she explores the murder mystery novel, both of which appear in Issue 3.  Articles in the current issue which I loved were Sophia Wyeth’s ‘A Living Work of Art – the decadent dreams of Luisa Casti’, and (amongst others) the ‘Born in the Wrong Era’ feature, debated by Ava Aviacion, G M Norton & Mathew Keller.

In conclusion, I would definitely recommend getting your hands on a copy! For those of you who would like to view a bit more of the magazine before deciding to buy, you can view selected articles online over on their website here.

The Details:

In Retrospect magazine is published in the UK 4 times yearly, with shipping options available worldwide. Subscriptions start at £12 for 3 issues (UK), and go up to £43.20 for 6 issues (International). The cover price is £4.50 per issue, in addition to subscription options, individual issues may be purchased, including back-issues. To view all these options, click here.

*This post contains affiliate links. I was given two issues of In Retrospect magazine to review for this blog post. All opinions are of course my own.*

Also – apologies for the slight lack of blog posts lately, I pulled a muscle in my arm during yoga class a little while ago (doh!), so I have been unable to type for any long periods of time.

Until next time dears, and happy reading!