Monday, 3 February 2014

Olivia AKA The Vintage Detective

It is ever since attending my first Vintage Fair as a wide-eyed Fresher when I got the bargain-busting, hustling, thrill seeking attitude for buying vintage clothes.Yet, with buying vintage clothes, it is very rare that you ever get the chance of knowing a little bit about its owner. However, with the clues I have I took the time to get my detective hat on and get hunting.

The vintage item in question, the baseball jersey top.

 When I visited the Cardiff Vintage Fair I got a strong lead. Olivia the Vintage Detective had her first case. This case of mine focused on this baseball top, which was the first thing that captured my attention at the vintage fair.. It is a dashingly red, and really makes a bold statement if you wear it casually or use to add a bit of intrigue. Now, I cannot promise you that I will be of the same calibre of the mighty Sherlock Holmes but let us see how this pans out.

I had never worn vintage clothes before University, and two years in I can confidently say that my wardrobe is comprised of 30% of clothing that was used to be worn by someone before circa 1990. I wore this top when I went out with a friend, where you can read in this blog post.

Back of the baseball jersey top.

What I love about wearing vintage clothes is the nostalgia of it all, I guess there is even some romanticism behind it. Finding love in something that someone else once loved. Its previous owner may have fallen out of that bright red 80's coat, that stands handsomely on the hanger with its proudly broaden shoulder pads. That Jaeger navy blue coat, with its blushing gold nautical buttons, or even that Scottish green and midnight blue tartan kilt (that you actually think is a male's kilt, but heaving it to your waist and tightening the belt to make it look highwaisted) - all belonged to someone and it carries the stories of the owner and the memories that they lived through. These examples are some of the pieces that I have bought in my vintage hunting adventures as an undergraduate.

This one, this baseball top, has lots of clues that allowed me to find out a bit about this 'Pico' guy. I may not be able to find information about the previous owner directly, but I can certainly find out which baseball team they supported.

The baseball badge reads 'Genuine Merchandise' which hints that this top was bought either at a sports arena or from a sports website belonging to the baseball top team. Majestic is a baseball apparel brand, who specialise in selling officially licensed sports tops and jerseys. So maybe the previous owner was a baseball fanatic, especially for this particular baseball team. 
'Astros' is a baseball team from Houston, also known as the 'Houston Astros'. They are still playing today, and in fact they are currently part of the Major League's Baseball American League. So, who is this Mr. Pico then?

Exploring the Major League Baseball (MLB) player historical database, there is only one player who had the surname Pico. He was born in 1966 on February 12th. He name is Jeff Pico.

The statistics on the MLB page about Jeff Pico are extensive! His height was 6"2, he was 170lbs, he played as a pitcher on the team... It is so interesting! YET, he did not play for the Houston Astros. He played for the Chicago Cubs!

So, what does this mean? According to what I have found, there is no player in Houston Astros' history who had a surname of Pico. Perhaps the owner of the baseball jersey has a surname of Pico and received a personalised baseball journey of the team they supported...

Not is all what is seems...!

What is true though, is that my female and male undergraduate friends alike, and myself included, have all benefited from saving a lot of money yet still getting high quality pieces by heading to a vintage shop or fair. The authentic leather jackets, the most charming yet possibly most snuggle-worthiest jumper you have ever seen in your life...

A berry lip with this baseball ensemble. I actually belted it with a
thin string belt to make it look like a dress. The top is from COS.

Buying vintage clothes may bring you surprises - I once found a shopping list in the pocket of a vintage coat that I bought  - and that is part of the thrill!

The vintage detective in me is still going to be in the look out when I go on my next vintage purchase. Certainly this Pico case is not closed.

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