Kate Sekules and Vintage

How could I bang on about Personal Fashion and stories and not tell you my own? So, seeking material (visuals are scarce; am old), I went through my clips* and found all these columns I wrote for Clothes Show Magazine 25 years ago. 

* articles from print magazines, children


Turns out they are all about the exact same thing I’m still doing. I wrote about dressing Greenhow I love old clothes, & overshopping, & vintage copying & I  invented Refashioner (though: internet ten years off) .

Proof I was really early to this old clothes party! Redistribution too: I always hosted swaps, & would collect up bags of swag for different friends. In fact getting into things early is my main talent. It has not made me rich. 

Some things at which I was too early and very unpaid... 

Actual contact sheets!

Manchester, 10 years before Madchester/Britpop/Hacienda. However, bang on for Joy Division/ The Factory: (see the film "24-Hour Party People")
  • The Maker Movement. My first proper job: a startup magazine/catalog for craftspersons to sell their work directly. Or, analog Etsy.

  • Vintage trading. I had so much stuff, I had to open a stall in Camden Lock Market. I tremble to consider the riches I offloaded for, literally, pennies. 

      • Notting Hill, Kentish Town, King's Cross, Meatpacking, East Village, LES, Nolita. I always live in places five minutes before they take off. In rentals.

      • Boxing. That was a big one. I earned almost $2,000 from fighting! 

It was such a new sport for women that I could go way too far with average talent. I fought pro and wrote a book. (Twelve years later women boxed in the Olympics.)


Food & Wine magazine threw me a book party (btw, I'd moved to New York). >



Random? No, just very kind: I was travel editor for nine years. Finally a use for my trend forecastability: seeing ahead was a job requirement. Also not a bad job.


 Then I was made editor in chief of Culture+Travel magazine. It was heaven. 

Therefore, after two years they shut it down. Magazines were falling like flies so I thought I'd leave the area and go do something I know absolutely nothing about. Like starting a web-based business. So here we are. 

Given my deep roots in vintage, and clothes, and in passing them on sweetly, I sometimes feel like Tess in Working Girl, when she proved the big idea was hers... 

working girl elevator scene

But hey, as long as our clothes are better valued in every sense, the more the merrier. But I do hope we'll use this growing market to buy better in the first place

On which note, I'm so proud of my daughter Bea, aged 12*, who has refused to wear anything but vintage since 4th grade. I swear it was her own idea. 

*She was 12 in these pix, and when I wrote this! In 2015


And that's my story so far. Do let's stay in touch! And check out my new site Visible Mending for more fun with old clothes. 

Read about Overshopping

Read about Refashioner

 Read about Visible Mending