A few weeks ago, one of my trusted vintage sellers, Modern Millie, contacted me about an exciting new adventure: They were launching their very own bonafide website! I’ve purchased a few swoonworthy vintage dresses from Modern Millie in the past (see one of my favorite acquisitions here) and even better, I’ve been lucky enough to visit their brick and mortar.
Modern Millie is based in Salem, MA (pretty close to where mini-me grew up), a famous little town I’ve been known to visit on crisp autumn days, to drink pumpkin beer and delight in the fabulous witchery that Salem is known for. In my pre-blog, pre-Instagram days (yes, there was such a time), I would visit Modern Millie with my family whenever we were in town to swoon over the vintage and vintage-inspired wares. My mom has even popped in on occasion to buy me gifts since I’ve been away (like these gloves). Now that I’m in Australia (and enjoying the wonders of the internet), I still love having the chance to visit their store online. Needless to say, this charming shop holds a special place in my homesick heart.
So, you can imagine how stoked I was to hear they were taking the next step in their entrepreneurial awesome. If there’s one thing I love, it’s when small businesses start to move it on up! I was especially excited to give this Voodoo Vixen Cats on a Wire dress a whirl – not only am I in love with novelty prints, but this particular dress had the most amazing neckline detail. As this was my first Voodoo Vixen dress, I decided to do a full review. The dress is rated below in terms of fit, fabric, features, and of course, twirlability.
The Fit (& Flare)
The cut of this dress is exactly the type that gets me all twitterpated – a cinched waist and a full, twirly skirt. As for sizing, I found this ran on the larger side for me (particularly as the dress has a fair amount of stretch). According to the size chart, a size small was a 33-34″ bust, 26-27″ waist and a medium was 35-36″ bust and 28-29″ waist. After chatting with customer service, they recommended sizing down to a small for my measurements (35b, 27-28w, 38 hip), particularly as I like a cinched fit. The size small was absolutely perfect – snug but not overly so. If you’re between sizes and like a fitted silhouette, I would suggest sizing down.
This dress also comes with it’s own black fabric belt – at first glance, I worried the belt would be a bit flimsy, but once I put it on I realized I didn’t have to worry – it cinched me in and held its shape beautifully. It also has a bit of stretch to it, which I think helps in feeling cinched but not spliced.
The dress is 24″ long from waist to hem, and the skirt fell to just above my knee (though I am one of life’s tall people). While I couldn’t wear my fullest 26″ crinoline with it, my Malco Modes knee-length petticoat was perfect. I don’t believe the skirt is a full circle, but it holds its full shape beautifully and gave me plenty of reasons to twirl (while Willie looked on in amusement. He’s so judgey).
The Fabric & Features
Okay, we need to talk about this print. The print is what got me – a deep cranberry background with teal and black cats gamboling around chasing birds on wires, with small pink starbursts sparkling in their wake. Because I’m me, I just had to pull out my old favorite black cat wedges for theme-appropriate styling (the dress did come from Salem, after all…) I tried to find a black cat in the neighborhood as the perfect photo prop, but they wouldn’t cooperate. Seriously. As if they have better things to do.
I really loved the unique color combination on this dress – it’s a bit outside of the box (which I can relate to) in hues of cranberry, black, and teal. I opted to stay within that color story, but also think it can be brightened with stark white accessories or a bit of baby pink to bring out the starbursts. The fabric of the dress is made out of 97% cotton and 3% elastane, and I found that combination gave it plenty of stretch. I have to be pretty active throughout the day, racing between meetings and running experiments in the lab, so a stretchy, breathable fabric enables my daily madness.
As someone who truly appreciates attention to detail, I have to say the neckline is absolutely amazing. A series of cutouts, finished with black edge piping, and a sweetheart neckline that I didn’t find at all too plunging for work. Note that I wasn’t able to wear a normal bra with it, as it was visible at the edges of the cutout, but a strapless or a demi-bra solved that problem. Other small but important touches include belt loops and an invisible back zip.
Then, there are the pockets. I know how we all feel about pockets. A dress with pockets will get me every time, but I absolutely loved the piping details on the pockets as well, almost as if there was an inner and outer pocket, curving in to meet each other like a dance.
The Facts & Figures
The Cats on a Wire dress comes in sizes XS-XL and retails for $82 USD from Modern Millie. They currently have them in stock (yay!) so go and get one while you can.
While you’re there, I highly recommend having a browse of Modern Millie’s new website – they have an incredible range of vintage-inspired clothing and will adding new items regularly. If vintage is what you’re after, they currently have a small vintage section on their website, but you can also check out the Modern Millie Etsy shop for a beautiful selection (this hot pink stunner is one I have my eye on for sure), but it will likely all be migrating to their one centralized website over time.
They can also be found on Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram if you want to follow along and get sneak peaks of what’s coming into the store! If you do scoop up this adorable dress (or others), be sure to let me know in the comments section! It’s always a feel-good moment to support small businesses and look adorable in the process.
And if anyone sees a black cat cross their path, call me…