Faux Pas? Schmaux Pas. Collectif Gets Camden Swinging…

Collectif Party Tootsie Rollers The Tootsie Rollers showcase the Serina Lurex Fishtail Dress (along with some impressive lung power) at Collectif's Big Camden Party

Scores of stylistas content to party the night away in the company of roughly 14 others each wearing the same dress? Yep, this week, a hundred savvy customers (and a few jammy Fashion Editors) were invited to reclaim the ultimate fashion faux pas as part of Collectif Clothing’s ‘100 Dresses’ event. The best bit? Not content with kitting us out in our pick of seven frock styles from the current collection in preparation for a night of “style, sass and swing” at their Big Camden Party, the Collectif beauty team was on hand to put the icing on those vintage makeover cakes with… complimentary victory rolls for all.

Samantha Simmonds, Fashion Editor of After Nyne Magazine, at Collectif's Big Camden Party
After Nyne’s Samantha in the Caterina Sherwood Check Pencil Dress

Collectif, which specialises in 1940s and 1950s inspired reproduction pieces, has, over the decade and a half since its millennial launch, garnered a fanbase of vintage enthusiasts who, they assert, don’t just like the brand, but live the brand – evidenced by the hordes of jaw-droppingly skilful swing dancers descending on Camden’s Solomons’ Yard… At the other end of the scale, meanwhile, are those of us for whom big band blues and burlesque are slightly more occasional treats – those who really want to be the kind of people who buy vintage but find the harsh reality of the average shop’s racks of dirty Converse and rails of non-stretch denim less appealing than we’d like… and who can’t help but feel a tinge of resentment at the notion of paying more for something precisely because it has already been used. If you’re feeling my pain, take note – this is the hassle- (and odour-) free way to do vintage.

From whichever camp we may have originated, I’m pretty sure we all departed the cobbles of Camden with a hefty winter wish list, as well as an ineradicable earworm or two (yep, “Don’t Sit Under the Apple Tree” is still playing on mental repeat for me…) and a longing to learn to lindy hop.

Collectif has stores in Camden, Old Spitalfields, Stoke Newington and Brighton. You can also view the full collection and shop online.

Main Image Credit: Jackson & Co Photography

Samantha Simmonds