Suzanne Ford Carafano

Art Director and Buyer for Spanish Moss

About Suzanne Ford Carafano

Suzanne Ford Carafano is the art director and buyer for Spanish Moss, a clothing boutique based in southern California. Spanish Moss carries American Gold, her line of new designs, as well as vintage clothing. As a clothing designer, artist, and businesswoman, Suzanne Ford Carafano has worked with her partner and husband Vincent Carafano to build an internationally known clothing brand. American Gold has stockists in five states, in cities such as New York and Beverly Hills, and in Australia and Canada and has been featured in top fashion magazines, including Glamour, Vogue and Marie Claire.

Ms. Carafano’s interest in design began as a child, when she used to travel with her family for months at a time across America. She spent her time sketching and writing about the American landscape, and that sensibility, in addition to her love of folk art and Southern gothic novels, continues to inform her work as a designer.

When not designing textiles and clothes, Ms. Carafano enjoys writing, reading, taking photographs, and painting. 

Suzanne F. Carafano Supports Efforts of Gram Parsons Foundation

The designer of the American Gold clothing line and owner of the Spanish Moss Vintage retail site, Suzanne Ford Carafano’s boutique store has been featured in such publications as Harper’s Bazaar, Glamour, Marie Claire, and Vogue Australia. Suzanne Ford Carafano supports the Gram Parson’s Foundation by donating items for auction to provide funding for drug and alcohol rehab services.

The idea or mission behind the Gram Parson’s Foundation is to provide rehab treatment and recovery for artists and musicians. The organization also emphasizes youth outreach through programs that underscore education, awareness, and the prevention of drug and alcohol abuse via music.

Namesake Gram Parsons was a musical artist, a songwriter that influenced such musicians as the Byrds and the Rolling Stones. Born in Waycross, Georgia in 1946 as Cecil Ingram Connor, he has come to be known as the “father of country-rock.” He died in September 1973 of a drug overdose.

How to Make Sure Vintage Clothing Fits Well

Suzanne Ford Carafano's Spanish Moss clothing collection features an assortment of vintage jewelry and dresses. When considering buying vintage clothing, such as that in Suzanne Ford Carafano's line, shoppers should know how vintage clothes are sized as well as how they fit.

The farther back one goes in time in fashion, the smaller the dress is sized. A size 14 dress made in 1960 is equivalent to a size 8 today. Therefore, Marilyn Monroe, by today's measurements, really wore a size 8, not a size 14 as was stated in the 1960s. A size 14 today would be considered a size 20 in Marilyn’s time.

Vintage dress sizes can cause some women to believe they have gained weight when, in fact, the clothing was sized quite differently at the time. Generally, most women's vintage apparel measures about three to four sizes smaller than contemporary designs.

Again, the older the style the clothing, the smaller the sizing. For example, a woman who wears size 10 today will probably have to buy a size 16 if she buys a vintage piece from the 1930s. Otherwise, the clothing simply will not fit.

The reason dresses, which were once larger, are sized smaller today is because they have gone through a process known as vanity sizing during the past two decades. Women are larger and so are their clothes. That's why it's important to check the sizing instructions on apparel sites online. Sizes are based on the origin of the clothing as well as when it was made.

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