I thought that this, my very first blog post on Lori and the Caravan, should be a way of introducing myself and the path that led me on my merry way to running an online shop full of vintage goodies for little ones. And then it struck me how odd it looked on paper, because this time last year I was in a stuffy office in my very serious workplace, getting on with my often challenging job. I won’t go into details, but as fields of employment go, it could not be more different. I was also massively pregnant, waddling around on my swollen ankles, and wondering why the ‘glowing’ stage seemed to have passed me by.
Then I looked in my wardrobe and realised that it’s not such a leap, in fact it’s not a leap at all, because my love of vintage has been with me for much longer than my previous career. I think I was about fifteen, maybe sixteen, when I caught the bug. I lived in Leicester, and every weekend my friends and I would meet at the Clock Tower in the town centre and wander around the shops, because, and I cannot stress this enough, there was nothing else to do. I’d recently started going to a local club called the Fanclub, and an AMAZING indie/60s/Northern Soul night at Leicester Uni called Brighton Beach, and this had bought me into contact with people who were older, and therefore massively cooler than me. In my Topshop flares and Adidas Gazelles I followed their lead and found myself in the Silver Arcade and a shop called The Wardrobe. It was heaven. I can still remember my first major purchase – a 1960s trench coat that was way too big, but I didn’t care. I was in love.
It’s the uniqueness of the clothes that really gets me, the fact that you can walk down the street and know that no one else will be wearing the same outfit as you. I love it when you find a handmade item and it’s in the most amazing condition considering the age, and you just know that someone loved it, really loved it, and looked after it, and treasured it, and now you get to carry it on.
In terms of eras, I’ve think I’ve pretty much tried it all. I went full-on Mod when I was in 6th form, with mini-dresses and white go-go boots. My university years saw me variously explore the 80s, the 50s, go a bit hippy for a while, marcel-wave my hair because of a sudden obsession with Zelda Fitzgerald, before zipping back to the 60s with bobbed hair and knee socks. A lot of people have told me that I was born in the wrong era, but I don’t think that’s true. I get to pick and choose as I please. I get the best of all worlds. Last summer I came over a bit 70s. I’d just had a baby see, and the floaty shapes were perfect as my body transitioned from expectant mum to knackered mum.
So yes, the baby. Obviously I’d seen a bit of children’s vintage around, I have eyes after all. But it was only after I had Arthur that I noticed just how lovely a lot of it was. And the amazing condition it had been kept in. And I just had to share it.
Which brings us to Lori and the Caravan, which I hope will be more than a little vintage shop run out of an old Shepherd’s Hut. It’s a celebration of all things vintage. Children’s clothes that have a history and a uniqueness that makes them just that little bit more special than a lot of what’s available on the High Street, design ideas that will make your child’s bedroom or nursery a place that really captures your individual sense of style. Plus little insights into my buying adventures across Europe.
I really want to hear from you, so please drop me a line with any thoughts, or ideas for the site!