Monday, October 18, 2010

NOVEMBER'S BOOK - A Vintage Affair

A Vintage Affair
Isabel Wolff

Every dress has a history. And so does every woman.

Her friends are stunned when Phoebe Swift abruptly leaves a plum job at the prestigious Sotheby’s auction house to open her own vintage clothing shop in London—but to Phoebe, it’s the fulfillment of a dream. In the sunlight-flooded interior of Village Vintage, surrounded by Yves Saint Laurent silk scarves, Vivienne Westwood bustle skirts, cupcake dresses, and satin gowns, Phoebe hopes to make her store the hot new place to shop, even as she deals with two ardent suitors, her increasingly difficult mother, and a secret from her past that casts a shadow over her new venture.

For Phoebe, each vintage garment carries its own precious history. Digging for finds in attics and wardrobes, Phoebe is rewarded whenever she finds something truly unique, for she knows that when you buy a piece of vintage clothing, you’re not just buying fabric and thread—you’re buying a piece of someone’s past. But one particular article of clothing will soon unexpectedly change her life.
Thérèse Bell, an elderly Frenchwoman, has an impressive clothing collection. But among the array of smart suits and couture gowns, Phoebe finds a child’s sky-blue coat—an item with which Bell is stubbornly reluctant to part. As the two women become friends, Phoebe will learn the tale of that little blue coat. And she will discover an astonishing connection between herself and Thérèse Bell—one that will help her heal the pain of her own past and allow her to love again. (from


Candy said...

I really liked this book. She had a way of making you like all the characters, even the "bad" ones. (Well, except for the dad's second wife. Yuck.) I really want a cupcake dress. (Though it would look absolutely ghastly on me.) A blue one, though the yellow sounded darling.

Lauri said...

Considering I know nothing about vintage clothes or designers for that matter I did like the book. I liked how the story was woven around vintage clothes. This ended up being an interesting way to tell the story. Even though the story was somewhat predictable it still kept you wanting to continue reading to the end. I enjoyed the mothers character and her pursuit to look younger.
Like Candy I did like all the characters and unlike her I do not want a cupcake dress.

Favorite Quote page 158
"Basically, they cook your face. Betty from my bridge circle's had it. She's thrilled - except that she said it was like having cigarettes stubbed out on her cheeks for an hour and a half.
What torture! And how does Betty look now?
To be honest, exactly the same: but she's convinced she looks younger, so it was obviously worth it."

Anonymous said...

What an enchanting story! I was so engrossed in this book that I finished it in one day and I actually got upset when I was interrupted. This book is definately not your average "chick-lit". I loved the history of the clothes. I loved the stories that you learned about all the different women. I love the healing that takes place and the way Pheobe grew and learned to heal her heartaches. It was never depressing and had some fun quirky characters. If you can't tell....I loved it!

Favorite Quote
"'Business before pleasure,' Mags chuckled. 'Thanking you.' She took the £50 from my fingers, then tucked it into her cleavage. I imagined the notes becoming warm. Then I wondered what else she kept down there. A hole punch? Her address book? A small dog?" pg. 125

Annell said...

I LOVE this one! I really liked learning about the clothing and each character's personal story in this book. Great read.

Linda quoted my favorite quote. When I first read it I could not stop laughing :)

Lucinda said...

I just finished this book tonight and am filled with gratitude for the experiences I have had in my life, good and bad. "A Vintage Affair", reminded me how fragile life is and how friendships come in different shapes and sizes with different outcomes.

Pg. 330
"My dear Phoebe,
This clock belonged to my parents. I give it to you not just because it was on of the things I most treasured, but by way of reminding you that its hands are going round, and with them all the hours and days and years of your life. Phoebe, I implore you not to spend too much of the precious time you have left regretting what you did or didn't do, or what might or might not have been, And whenever you do feel sad, I hope you will console yourself by remembering the inestimable good that you did me, your friend.

Thank you for picking this book even if it has made me think about the changes coming my way.