The Cats Pajamas: Everything you need to know about vintage fashion

I’m Miss Kitty! No, not the little cat, silly – that’s Louise, my 2,000 Calico photo-bomber. I love to share my love, knowledge and vintage adventures with anyone who cares to read them. I have spent more than 35 years of my nine lives chasing after vintage estates, antique and vintage clothing shows as well as anyone’s closet or attic to procure items for my collection. Oh, and please feel free to write me, dahling -and ask me anything pertaining to vintage – I’ll do my best to answer at


Special to the Sun-Gazette

Something which has always fascinated me about vintage clothing is the history behind each piece. Who wore it before, what occasion did they buy it for, even what type of closet did it hang in? It’s sad that so much of the time we can’t know the answers to these questions, but I have a real treat for you today.

Not only was this vintage swimsuit made by Elsa Schiaparelli, one of the most influential and sought-after designers of the 1930s and ’40s, but it was owned by the gorgeous skating star Melva Block.

Block, pictured above left, was a national roller skating champion from Detroit, Michigan, back in the day when roller dancing had aspirations to be like figure skating.

She won the national championships twice and then went to Hollywood, California, to follow in the footsteps of Olympic skater turned movie star Sonja Henie. Not only was the swimsuit so beautiful, it was in perfect condition in its original box with the original Schiaparelli label still attached.

Plus that beautiful gold lame, wow! Is it perhaps the perfect piece of vintage?

Content courtesy of Miss Kitty’s blog,

The Cats Pajamas is an online store based out of Montoursville that specializes in vintage clothing.

The column will run the first Friday of each month.