Last week I visited Prague. It was a late birthday present from my mother. This will be quite a long post with a lot of images of my outfits, vintage shopping and the sightseeing I did.
First there's always packing. Especially when travelling by plane you have to consider very carefully what you take. Starting point was my light blue spring/summer coat. The hat that fitted my outfits the best was impossible to take as it is straw and I'd be scared it would be crushed. So I took my most floppy 1940's hat that went well with some of the prints in my dresses. I hadn't worn it for quite some time so it was a good opportunity to get some wear out of it.
First outfit just after arriving at the hotel. The hotel was built in art deco style, hence it is called the Imperial art Deco Hotel.
Some more details of the the interior of the hotel. Some ancient Egyptian and Grecian inspirations going on.
The first afternoon we went shopping. A friend gave me the tip to go to Art Deco Galerie in the city centre (Michalska 21)
This was certainly worth a visit! The shop was full of vintage objects and clothes, even if you do not intend to buy anything it's nice to just take a look. The pictures below will give you some idea.
One of the main features were the old mannequins.
You do need some time as the store is packed!
On the internet and in tourist guides it is being described as expensive sometimes. I thought prices were rather reasonable. Probably prices are compared to cheap tourist shops and second hand shops that mainly sell 80's and onward. In this shop most things are pre-60's. Here's what I bought:
Cotton summerdress from the early 30's (or perhaps very late 20's). It had been laid out so it looks very 20's. Just look at the cute buttons and the top of the pleats, so very deco! To give you an idea of the prices: this cost me 980 czk (about 36 euros)
Silk summerdress. Probably 30's or 40's. A bit of a fixer upper but priced accordingly. Rare to find light colored (washing) silk summer daywear. Its merrit is it's plain appearance that can be dressed up in many different ways. I can already see lots of outfits comming together with this dress.
Two handbags. As my favorite black handbag was damaged when it was stolen last autumn I really needed a new one, so I guess that will be the purchase I'll be using the most. The brown one is in the softest leather.
A nice art deco style necklace. I love the fact that it is neutral (though all but demure) in a way so I can pair it with almost all my eveningwear and many different earrings.
This was something I'd been looking for for a while. At first it looks just like a brooch but it can be taken apart into two seperate clips to be worn at the sides of the neckline of a dress.
Like this. Great way to spice up a simple eveningdress.
Cotton underpants. Probably 1910's but changed in the 20's or later so it looks more like tappants when worn.
Outfit for the second day: you can see the hat in action, grew to love it. Mid/late 40's rayon floral dress, 40's coat, flower brooch to match dress.
May is such a lovely month, Prague was in bloom! We spent the day on the other side of the Moldau in Mala Strana and the Prague Castle.
St. Vitus' cathedral with a stained glass window by Mucha
We visited the Strahov monastery which has an impressive library and specimen of exotic animals on display.
The process of creating silk.
Second library room.
Interesting display. Some pretty 18th century fabrics
In the eneving we went to the opera at the Estates Theatre. We were in a loge box, you could just imagine all the things that had been going on in there in the old days ;)
Outfit: no coat needed as it was warmer. The hat again. Love my threetone brogues.
We visited the Jewish quarter and stumbled upon an alchemy museum. This laboratory from the 16th century had been discovered after Prague flooded some years ago.
Prague has a lot of Art Nouveau buildings. This doorway was striking.
In the afternoon we went to the museum of communism. A bit of a jumble of memorabelia.
We also went to the Mucha museum where taking photographs was not permitted on our way back I bougth these two Christmas decorations. Aren't they cute!
Can't believe how much I did in that one day because later in the afternoon I did some more vintage shopping. This time I went to Bohemian Retro that is a bit outside the city centre in Zizkov (Chvalova 8). When you decide to go shopping do take into account that many vintage shops only open in the afternoon at 2 or 3 o'clock.
The owner is English, so I had a very nice chat.
There;s a good selection of vintage. This shop too is sometimes called expensive but again I think prices are quite good compared to western Europe.
I bought this lovely 40's rayon dress. To give you an idea of prices: 900 czk (about 33 euro's)
1950's silk blouse
Bakelite soapbox that I'll use for my bobbypins.
Outfit: 1940's dress, cardigan and beret
On our last day we visited the municipal house a splendid Art Nouveau building.
There was an exhibition of Secese (art nouveau) artifacts from the museum of applied arts that is now closed due to a refurbishment.
Panel for the world exhibition by Mucha.
Also some costumes (my particular interest ofcourse)
Loved that they includes lavish underwear as well, so often overlooked. That corset!!
Afterwards we went to the House at the Black Madonna a cubist building. We normally associate cubism with paintings but in Prague it was also an architechture/interior design style. There was a museum dedicated to cubist furniture.
The furniture was mainly from the 1910's, so very early, you'd sooner expect that couch to be from the 30's!
Some of the shapes are not unlike Art Deco or Amsterdam School furniture but with sharper edges (imagine bumping into that in the dark...)
Quite surreal. Also makes me think of Italian futurist designs and German expressionistic filmsets.
After this visit we had a cake at Grand Café Oriënt in the same building. This is entirely in cubist style as well. I got this as a tip from a friend and would not have found the museum without knowing about the café!
A 'cubist' cake
This concluded my visit to Prague, it was lovely!