Today I'm thrilled to welcome Hollis Jenkins-Evans of Past Perfect Vintage to Desert Island Vintage.

Hollis in a 1940s suit jacket

Hollis in a 1940s suit jacket

In my early days of searching for vintage fashion online, a few sellers stood out. They knew how to sell to me—a Virgo through and through—with good photos and information about the garment, its construction, fabric, and the label. My favorites also consistently had vintage that made me swoon, at prices that didn't make me pass out. 

Not too many of my favorites from nearly 20 years ago are still around, but fortunately, Hollis and her Past Perfect Vintage are going strong. I have gotten to know Hollis through the Vintage Fashion Guild, where I have found her one of the most knowledgeable and helpful people in an elite membership. The lady knows clothes. She has been a seamstress and draper/pattern maker for decades. She is one of my long-time favorite people in the realm of vintage fashion, so I was excited to see how she'd answer the Desert Island question.

Like the other castaways on Desert Island Vintage, Hollis had a big challenge in winnowing down her list to a mere eight.

("This is overwhelming. Only 8 garments? Really? How can I possibly focus? I have trouble picking my 8 favorite 1880s bustle dresses, or my 8 favorite 1920s beaded party dresses, or my 8 favorite 1940s felt hats.")

Like some others, she imagined herself on an actual desert island, musing on what she would need to live there. Unlike anyone else though, Hollis' desert island doesn't come with sand and palm trees. Read on:

"Here it is. My list of 8 favorite vintage garments to take on my Desert Island. That's Mount Desert Island, Maine, where I hope to live soon. Once there I will need:

1. "Sweaters. This Pringle cardigan is a glorious color, and since I can't wear wool, the cashmere will work and it would be so warm and soft. Up there, cashmere is three-season wear.


2. "This Helen Bond Carruthers cardigan will be warm and perfect for both casual and dressy times. It's pretty casual on my island.


3. "49er Jackets. You can't have too many wool 49er jackets. This is a favorite one—for a while I had two identical of this jacket. I have five more 49ers in my closet, but this is the one that's going!


4. "A Wool Jacket. This Louella Ballerino appliqué jacket would just make me happy to look at as well as wear.


5. "A Long Coat. I love the color of this plaid coat—I'd feel so crisp and stylish in the snow.


6. "A Skirt. Not much call for a skirt on a wooded Maine island, but I'd have to take this skirt with appliquéd skiers on it.


7. "I love sporty knits, so this 1920s set in my favorite purple looks good, right? It's practical, right? I'll wear the cardigan as a separate, I promise.


8. "And because I must have one thing to remind me of how beautiful clothing can be and how it approaches art: This early 1920s silk velvet dress with the most glorious beaded tassel. I'd just hang it on the wall, or store it in an acid-free box and take it out and look at it occasionally. But I would know it was there.

All photos courtesy of Hollis Jenkins-Evans

All photos courtesy of Hollis Jenkins-Evans

" thing to remind me of how beautiful clothing can be and how it approaches art"

I love that thought, and that dress! I love the skiers skirt, the Helen Bond Carruthers cardigan, the 1920s knit set, and, and, and. I love all of Hollis' picks, and can envision her out hiking on Mount Desert Island in her pink plaid 49er jacket. 

Many thanks to Hollis Jenkins-Evans! Be sure to check out her website for vintage that belongs on anyone's short list. You'll also see her offerings on Etsy and Instagram.


What would you want if you could have just eight vintage fashion pieces? If you'd like to be featured here, let me know!