Fabulous Fashion

@TheBank hosted a Vintage Style show Thursday night to benefit the Second Harvest Food Bank

Eight models from both the campus and the community sported 24 different outfits from the 1920s through the 1970s. CODY MILLER/THE CAMPUS.

Fashion brought the campus and Meadville communities together Thursday as students and community members sported antique clothes at @TheBank’s first Vintage Style Show. The show encouraged attendants to appreciate past styles while supporting the Second Harvest Food Bank.

Mary Alice Monda, who owns M.A.’s Vintage Clothes at @TheBank, came up with the idea to bring the community together with her love of fashion. In the show, eight models sported 24 outfits, spanning from the 1920s to the 1970s.
Monda, who modeled for 14 years and has always enjoyed designing her own clothes, was excited for the opportunity to feature a number of wardrobes from different decades.

Emily Tamimie,'14, donned a black dress from the 1950s. Monda said this dress was popular for dancing. CODY MILLER/THE CAMPUS.

“I was lucky to grow up in the ‘50s, when it was a time of high-fashion,” she said. “The 50s became the fabulous look, people mostly remember Audrey Hepburn and Jackie Kennedy…there was just all kinds of fashion in the 50s.”
Monda explained why she considers fashion as not just clothing, but a storyteller for each decade as well.

“When the 20’s came, it’s the first time women kind of took the initiative and they cut their hair, they bobbed their hair,” she explained. “They wore short skirts, the flapper dresses that are gonna appear in the show, they drank, they smoked and they showed their knees. When there are bad times like war, or even the times we’re in now with the economy, the fashions tend to be dark colors.”

Monda suggested that nowadays there is a lack of appreciation for style.

“We didn’t just buy a dress, we bought an ensemble,” she said. “Nowadays, it’s more just put-on.”

Allegheny student Emily Tamimie, ’14, who modeled in the style show, shares Monda’s passion.

Community member Amber Sparks sported an outfit from the 1930s. The ensemble, which features silk gloves, was imported from France. CODY MILLER/THE CAMPUS.

“I love vintage clothes,” she said. “My mom, grandma and I love going through their wardrobes.”

Tamimie wore two outfits in the show – a party dress from the 1950s and a metallic dress with buttons down the front from the 1970s.

The show also encouraged students who weren’t so interested in fashion to start thinking more about what they wear.
Shannon McAvinchey, ’14, who explained that her sense of fashion does not go much further than watching “America’s Next Top Model,” explained that after meeting Monda and participating in the style show, she now embraces antique fashions.

“Emily [Tamimie], because she’s interested in history, was telling me all about the different time periods and then how you could do add this, or change this, a little to make the outfit more modern but still preserving the history and the vintage look,” McAvinchey said. “So I was becoming enlightened to the whole idea of vintage fashion.”

Victoria Durst, '15, sported a black dress from the 1950s. The ensemble was complete with rhinestone jewelry. CODY MILLER/THE CAMPUS.

Vintage fashion has been a pull for many students to shop in downtown Meadville.

“I like going to thrift stores to support the local businesses,” Tamimie said.

Tamimie listed Top Drawer as one of the stores she likes to visit.

In addition to the opportunity to sport some stylish outfits from past decades, students participated in the vintage show to support the Second Harvest Food Bank.

The event was free, but Monda asked attendants to bring two non-perishable food items to donate to the local charity.
Monda, who used to be a teacher, explained her desire to help the local charity.

“I don’t want to think about children going to bed hungry,” she said. “Most of us keep canned goods on the shelf that we can donate.”

Monda hopes to encourage an appreciation for vintage styles and support the local community with future events because she enjoys sharing her passion.