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Welcome to Fifth & Finest, a forty-friendly fashion blog with zero frump. Have a nice stay!

Who needs cool when there’s quirky?

Who needs cool when there’s quirky?

As the summer starts to fade and new season clothing hits the rails, I’ve noticed a distinct shift from the cool to the quirky: vintage styling, cute prints and a lot more color. Maybe it’s because we need cheering up in these crazy times? Who knows. But I’m on board.

Here are a few of my favorite purveyors of fashion with a twist…

Monki

If you follow this publication on Instagram or Facebook (which obviously you should) you’ll have seen that a couple of my Monki dresses made appearances recently. The Skandi brand specializes in minimalist shapes in maximalist prints. Tent dresses in crazy fabrics, basically.

They’re so easy to wear and I always get asked about them. So if you’re dreading a social function, a Monki dress could be a great conversation starter. And you can eat plenty of cake at said social function as they’re so forgiving, which is always a bonus.

For autumn I’m loving the face and highlighter pen print shirt dresses and their oversized coats. They also do some fabulous, affordable jeans accessories.

Monki sells online to most of Europe, and via ASOS in the US.

Monki face print button-up shirt dress, £30

Monki face print button-up shirt dress, £30

Monki highlighter pen print button-up shirt dress, £30

Monki highlighter pen print button-up shirt dress, £30

Monki oversized boucle coat £65

Monki oversized boucle coat £65

Monki Mozik mid-blue jeans, £40

Monki Mozik mid-blue jeans, £40

Monki cherry earrings, £5

Monki cherry earrings, £5

ModCloth

According to its own blurb, ModCloth “…reimagine[s] women clothes with unique styles and original prints in sizes 00-28”.

As the name suggests, this brand has a 60s leaning (cute knits, pinafores etc) but with variety to suit all tastes.

Some of their prints are amazing, especially these fox and crane offerings.

The plaid cropped jumpsuit is also remarkable in that it sounds horrific but could end up being a winter staple.

ModCloth fox-print Charm School pullover sweater, $49

ModCloth fox-print Charm School pullover sweater, $49

ModCloth crane-print-Bold Notion tie-waist jumpsuit, 89

ModCloth crane-print-Bold Notion tie-waist jumpsuit, 89

If all this is too cutesy for you, these dinosaur earrings might be the perfect way to add just a splash of quirk to your usual style.

ModCloth is US-based but ships worldwide.

ModCloth Rex Appeal drop earrings, $15

ModCloth Rex Appeal drop earrings, $15

Cult Gaia

This label’s offerings are a little higher on the price scale, but if you’re looking for something special for a holiday party and don’t want to look like everyone else in the room, it could be worth the investment.

I personally adore their sculptural heels and bags which, when you aren’t wearing them, really ought to be displayed on a plinth in your living room. In fact, CG’s tagline is “wearable art”.

Cult Gaia Pearl bag, $368

Cult Gaia Pearl bag, $368

Cult Gaia Astraea bag mini, $288

Cult Gaia Astraea bag mini, $288

Cult Gaia Cam boot, 518

Cult Gaia Cam boot, 518

Cult Gaia does incorporate a lot of cut outs and two-piece cropped top thingies (official fashion term), which might be a little too flesh-baring, but if you do stray beyond accessories they do some great wide leg statement pants in a variety of shades which could be dressed up or down easily, plus some maxi skirts with a difference (of course).

Like ModCloth, Cult Gaia is based in the US but ships worldwide. It also has some pretty good sales, which are worth watching out for, given the standard prices.

Cult Gaia Naomi pants, $398

Cult Gaia Naomi pants, $398

Cult Gaia Reyna skirt, $218

Cult Gaia Reyna skirt, $218

Unique Vintage

If you really love the vintage vibe but don’t have the time or money to hunt for the real thing, Unique Vintage has you covered. Originally a store in LA, it now also sells online and ships worldwide.

Its website is organized by era going back to the 1920s (stunning flapper dresses which look totally chic, rather than fancy dress), through to the 1970s (hippie chic dresses and retro tees). The 50s swing dresses and swimwear and 60s beatnik sweaters are particularly fabulous.

Unique Vintage Bettina long flapper dress, $268

Unique Vintage Bettina long flapper dress, $268

Unique Vintage Voodoo Vixen swing dress, $68

Unique Vintage Voodoo Vixen swing dress, $68

Unique Vintage retro plaid fuzzy knit sweater, $48

Unique Vintage retro plaid fuzzy knit sweater, $48

Unique Vintage high waist Ginger pants, $68

Unique Vintage high waist Ginger pants, $68

Unique Vintage Monroe bikini, $82

Unique Vintage Monroe bikini, $82

UV has plenty of plus size choice and, happily, many of its “regular” size garments are modeled by normal size chicks. Hooray.

And while it’s a little late for me, they also have some stunning vintage-inspired prom and bridal gowns at very reasonable price points.

Have you tried any of these brands? Send me some pics of your purchases. And if I’ve missed a quirky, wearable brand you love please share it with the group. And of course check out my quirky Pinterest board, pretty please.


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