Sarah Owen for Vintage Girls. Photography Zoe Barling. Styling Nadia Barbaro

Searching the globe high and low, Nadia Barbaro has hand selected the most divine and modern women of all, and choreographed a vintage story. Vintage Girls captures the stories and memories of exquisite and irreplaceable fashion.

Embarking on this elegant hunt for vintage pieces is not all Nadia does. With her entrepreneurial spirit, this vintage girl is also known for her impeccable styling abilities, her cohesive eye for television commercials and her intuitive nature in buying. Revealing Melbourne’s best kept secret and her biggest inspirations into her latest book, Nadia took some time to talk to Couturing.Vintage-Girls_Cover

Do you play favourites with your vintage collection and if so, which takes first place?

My favourite pieces are those that are handed down to me, I guess because they are sentimental, and I love that I have seen pictures of my mum wearing the same pieces when she was younger.

An amazing find was a perfect condition hand beaded 50’s blue ball gown I bought as a teenager in the 90’s that I then photographed Kimbra in for this book all these years later!

Who was the biggest inspiration for Vintage Girls?

I have always been very interested in vintage fashion, long before I even knew it was called that! As a young girl I admired my grandmothers 40’s and 50’s handbags, shoes and jewellery. I couldn’t wait till I was old enough to wear them. Then as a teenager I loved to go to the Camberwell market on a Sunday morning to hunt for vintage pieces. As an adult I’ve loved hunting online for vintage dresses and accessories for myself as well as for my styling work.


Juliet Burnett for Vintage Girls. Photography: Thuy Vy. Styling: Nadia Barbaro

I wanted to hear others women’s stories about how they came to love vintage fashion and how it has impacted on their own personal style.  It was interesting to hear that these women all loved the idea of sharing in somebody else’s history by thinking about who might have previously owned that item and where it might have been worn. Sarah Blasko has a briefcase with somebody else’s name on it and wonders about who she might be. Liz Goldwyn revealed one of her prized possessions is a knit Rasta hat that once belonged to Bob Marley.

It also is a really positive fashion story to share right now, with so much disposal fast-fashion and ever changing trends, vintage is timeless, and recycling clothing is an ethical fashion choice.

What is your favourite city when it comes to scouting new vintage pieces?

I think there is amazing vintage in America. I love to shop online for vintage, there are so many amazing stores as well as great sellers on Etsy and Ebay.


Mia Moretti and Cleo Wade for Vintage Girls. Photography George Byrne

What is Melbourne’s best kept secret vintage store?

I really love Hawkeye Vintage in Prahran. She has some amazing designer vintage pieces that we were previously not exposed to in Melbourne.

What does a typical day at work involve for you?

I work as a freelance fashion stylist. I mostly work on television commercials, occasionally as a buyer on TV shows, as well as fashion editorial work. So it’s a nice variety of different roles.  I’ve recently styled shoots for Hitched magazine, which is a gorgeous new indie magazine. I love creative directing and styling fashion shoots as its nice to be able to explore your own ideas and its always fun to dress models. Styling television commercials keeps me pretty busy, I spend a lot of time shopping! But it keeps things interesting, changing jobs every couple of weeks.

To hear more tales of this talented Vintage Girl be sure to purchase her book from the iTunes store and in hard copy at selected stockists while stock lasts.

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