My Vintage Wardrobe: Naomi Thompson &Amp; Liz Tregenza, Vintage Experts &Amp; Authors

03/12/2014 11:40 | Updated 20 May 2015

With a penchant for bright colours and bold shapes, Naomi Thompson and Liz Tregenza's impressive vintage wardrobes are bursting with everything from 1940s Hollywood-inspired fashions to one-off 1990s finds.

While Liz considers herself a "sucker for provenance" – knowing the backstory of a piece makes her more likely to purchase it – Naomi loves how vintage-hunting makes her feel like a "detective."

The two recently co-authored the book Style Me Vintage: Accessories (a guide to collectable vintage hats, gloves, bags, shoes, jewellery, £14.99, Pavilion) and gave us their top tips on vintage buying, styling and – of course, accessorizing. Don't miss the pics from their amazing wardrobes below...

What are the best vintage-sourcing spots?

Naomi: I buy everything from eBay or charity shops. I am always bidding on the stuff that ends at 5am or just after lunch. I play black blob bingo. I take far too many chances on rubbish photos, but that's half the fun. I also love a job lot.

Liz: I buy primarily online- mostly eBay and Etsy. I love antiques markets with lots of little nooks and crannies, too - perfect for picking up vintage accessories.

Three top tips for styling vintage wares?

Naomi: 1. With clothes, one thing simple, one thing dramatic works well.

2. When it comes to accessories, the more the merrier. Wear them all!

3. Wear what you like rather than the latest decade on trend. I've been sucked into the 1990s but only the really high end stuff (I love Escada and Moschino jackets, I wear them with leggings, shocker!), not the pseudo grunge revival.

Liz: 1. Don't be afraid to mix different eras together - vintage is great for creating your own personal style.

2. A chic vintage scarf tied around the handle is the perfect way to brighten up any plain handbag

3. Jazz up a plain pair of shoes with clip earrings to resemble old-school shoe clips.

What are your favourite vintage eras and style icons?


I am currently revisiting a bit of Edina Monsoon minus the sportswear.

I've never really had style icons except for aged 14 when I was dying to be Courtney Love.

Liz: I'm primarily a 1950s girl, but to me the age of a garment or piece is often irrelevant. If I love it enough I'll buy it! I don't like to get tied down in ideas of what you should and shouldn't wear. For me, wearing vintage clothing stemmed from being a bit of an experimental dresser. Vintage provides me with the tools to create my own distinctive look.

I'm increasingly getting into dramatic 1940s Hollywood-inspired clothes. Clothes you might describe as fierce - a long columnar gown with a strong shoulder line - clothes that make a real statement.

My big style crush at the moment is Halldis Prince. She was a model during the 1940s. A number of people have said she looks like a blonde version of me!

How does vintage fashion inspire your work?

Naomi: It makes me feel like a detective. I like to think the hunt will never end, but it probably will. It's my personal belief that the vintage clothing well as we know it will run dry and frankly there is very little produced in the last two decades that I could see my daughter lusting over when she is older. I'll probably be proved wrong but just in case, I am making her a capsule wardrobe of all my favourite bits and family items, including items worn by my mother and grandmother. This is why collecting accessories is such fun!

Liz: Vintage is part of my life on a daily basis. The way I dress has always been hugely important to me and I find vintage clothes and accessories are a wonderful form of self-expression. My interest in vintage also comes from a scholarly perspective. I completed my MA earlier this year focusing upon British ready-to-wear 1946-66. I'm actually a museum curator "by day" (Whitehall in Cheam, Surrey). I wear bright and colourful clothes and accessories to work all the time and find it often forms a talking point with the visitors.

LOVE THIS WRITER? Follow her on Twitter @JenBNYC


See inside the best vintage wardrobes here.

Find the best vintage shops, salons, bars and diners in your area with our shopping guide Find Me Vintage.


Suggest a correction