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Articles tagged as vintage labels (view all)

Nolan Miller: In Memoriam

08 June, 2012 0 comments Leave a comment

 Nolan Miller, famed for his glamorous and over-the-top designs for the 1980s primetime soap, Dynasty, died earlier this week after a 6 year battle with lung cancer.

On a budget of $35,000 per episode, he adorned Joan Collins, Linda Evans, and the rest of the actresses playing Carringtons, their hangers-on and their enemies in amazing and often extreme 80s fashion. Sequined and beaded gowns, "Ladies who lunch" power suits with striking and opulent details, furs, extravagant and dramatic hats - Nolan Miller's designs for Dynasty won him an Emmy in 1984 and made him famous.

Miller also designed for movies and other television series, including Charlie's Angels, The Love Boat, and The Addams Family. Morticia Addams' iconic and darkly glamourous black gown, reminiscent of a gothic mermaid with a hint of octopus, was a Nolan Miller design. He also designed the beaded dress worn by starlet Ginger Grant the day she was stranded on Gilligan's Island.


I feel lucky to have a three piece vintage 1980s Nolan Miller suit, purple wool with a matching silk shell, detailed with glossy black bugle beads, listed here at MagsRags. To check out the listing, follow this link





Suzy Creamcheese Loves You!

28 April, 2012 27 comments Leave a comment

The original Suzy Creamcheese sprung from the wonderfully twisted brain of Frank Zappa in 1966 when a letter supposedly written by her appeared on the back of his debut double album  "Freak Out", complaining that "these Mothers are crazy. You can tell by their clothes."


Within a few years, Leslie Fearon had assumed the moniker and opened a boutique in Las Vegas called Suzy Creamcheese that became legendary for selling amazing one-of-a-kind fashions coveted and worn by celebrities, show girls and strippers. Throughout the 1970s, movie stars like Ann Margaret, Shirley MacClaine, and musicians like Dionne Warwick, Cher, and Stevie Nicks, shopped at Suzy Creamcheese. Wives of mobsters loved the clothes too, a fact given a nod in the movie "Casino", when Sharon Stone's character, Ginger, talks about shopping there. Elvis Presley bought stagewear for himself from Suzy Creamcheese as well as outfits for his wife Priscilla Presley and a succession of girlfriends.


Elvis on stage in a leather         Elvis girlfriend Linda Thompson      An Elvis leather fringed suit           Suzy Creamcheese label

Suzy Creamcheese suit            in a hand crocheted Suzy dress      worn onstage and privately



 I am lucky enough to own an original Suzy Creamcheese velvet Edwardian inspired skirt suit, available for purchase here at

Suzy Creamcheese Las Vegas suit                

Nat Nast: King of the Bowling Shirt

21 April, 2012 0 comments Leave a comment

 This is the first in what will be a series of occasional posts with photos of vintage clothing labels and the garments they came from. Now, the Vintage Fashion Guild, of which I am a proud member, hosts the Vintage Label Resource, an extensive library of vintage clothing labels, with helpful information about the designers and companies behind the fashion. I have contributed several label photos myself, and written a few of the designer bios.


My little resource here will be much more limited. I thought it might be helpful to some collectors and fans to see the whole garments  along with the labels, since sometimes there can be some difference of opinion about dating. Sometimes I'll have some background for you about the label, and sometimes the pictures will have to say it all.


I'm going to start with Nat Nast, and I do have information, based on my research. And I have two Nat Nast women's bowling shirts, fairly similar to each other, but with different labels. I'll be submitting a copy of this to VFG for the label resource, so you may eventually find it there too. The first label and shirt



And the second:


Even though the two shirts look so similar, with the same tiki graphic on the right chest, there are differences - the first one has rolled cuffs. You can see the pleated "Action Back" really well on that one too, although they both have it.I think they are both 1950s vintage but I would put the pink and mocha one just a little earlier, based both on the label design and the style used for the sponsor graphic on the back. And here's some details on Nat Nast and his bowling shirts.


Nat Nast was called “The King of Bowling Shirts”, and is believed to have produced the very first bowling shirts when he started his company in Kansas City Missouri in 1946. Nat Nast created the first shirts with inverted pleats, known as the Action Back. The shirts were made out of washable rayon and the company eventually specialized in customized embroidery for colleges and universities as well as bowling teams and their sponsors across the USA. The Nat Nast company was sold in the 1970s. A revival of sorts came about in 2000 when his two daughters started Nat Nast Luxury Originals, basing their designs on their father’s iconic shirts but adding embroidered artwork.