My Vintage Style-Outfit for Riding the Smoky Mountain Steam Train

Riding the Smoky Mtn Steam train

A couple of weeks ago my husband and I were invited to spend several days in the mountains of North Carolina. Friends of ours, who had just built a home there, decided to celebrate the New Year by inviting about 50 people to join them! We all stayed in cabins at the Iron Horse Lodge in Stecoah, which is close to their property.

Every day they had fun activities planned for everyone. And one of my favorites was an excursion on a Great Smoky Mountains Railroad vintage  steam train. Their 1702 steam engine from 1942 is only one of two left in the whole country. Take a look at this beauty!

 1702 steam engine

When I first heard we were going on this trip visions of murder mysteries and film noir started started dancing in my head. North by Northwest, Strangers on a Train, Murder on the Orient Express.  Trains are the perfect setting for  intrigue, spies, femme fatales, rogues and romance.

Ok, so maybe I got a little carried away. It was obvious the trip wasn’t going to be quite THAT exciting. But all my crazy thoughts did help inspire the vintage outfit I put together for the ride.


Vintage outfit for train ride


I have this early 1950s black rayon gabardine coat I had been looking forward to wearing. It is a fitted and flared style in the “new look”  silhouette that Dior made popular in the late 1940s.

Vintage outfit for train ride


Smoky Mountain trainOur friends reserved two first class dining cars for our 4 hour trip.  They also treated everyone to a fabulous lunch that included open bar. My dessert consisted of the biggest most delicious hunk of decadent chocolate cake I ever had.  It was so massive I had to wash it down with a couple glasses of chardonnay!


Train ride outfit


50s Red wool knit top with black velvet accents
70s black and white glen plaid button front skirt
70s cognac leather boots
contemporary red leather purse
vintage floral print Echo scarf
50 red and black clip on earrings


The Great Smoky Mountain Railroad also runs different themed trips, including one combining  dining and drinking Carolina moonshine while riding through the Nantahala Gorge.  I’d love to go back for that one!

Great Smoky Mountain Railroad

The scenery in the Smoky Mountains was breathtaking, even though it was overcast most of the time we were there.  These are photos I took when we were out walking in the national forest on New Years Day. After all the eating I had been doing I forced myself to hike six miles, most of which was uphill! I figured I’d at least burn off the calories from that Death by Chocolate dessert. And, yes, that is exactly what the servers on the train called it.

I found out that the Smokies get their name from the mist that hovers around the peaks and valleys. It is actually caused by the vegetation that grows there.  It exhales VOC’s, or volatile organic compounds, which might sound scary, but they are perfectly natural when coming from plants and trees. It also makes the fog appear blue tinted because the molecules from the compounds reflect the blue light of the sky.

Smoky Mountains

Everywhere we walked in the forest there were beautiful waterfalls and rivers with rapids. The sounds of all the rushing water was hypnotic. I could have sat there all day just listening.

Smokey Mountain National Forest

And here I am with my leading man, Andrew!


Train quote-Agatha Christie


Have you ever taken a scenic train ride? If so, where to and how did you like it?

Till next time……..




Link ups

Patti/Not Dead Yet Style for Visible Monday

Jess/Elegantly Dressed and Stylish for Turning Heads Tuesday

By | 2019-02-04T10:51:13-04:00 January 17th, 2019|Fashion, My Vintage Style|6 Comments

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  1. Theresa Campbell
    Theresa Campbell February 3, 2019 at 9:10 pm

    Thanks, Jess. I would love to go back for the moonshine ride. It sounds like fun. Maybe someday we could do it together. It would be fun dressing up 1940s style with someone else!

  2. Avatar
    Jessica A Jannenga February 2, 2019 at 12:24 pm

    I was exxcited to see this post! My hubby and I 4 years ago went on the Smokey Mountain RR, a 1940s car, the one that goes to the Gorge and you drink moonshine. I dressed for the 40s and just loved the trip! I would so love to go back and ride the steam train like you did. Sounded like a wonderful day too!
    Your red sweater with the beautiful floal neck scarf and plaid skirt has a wonderful vintage vibe. I loved hearing about your day!
    thanks for linking!
    jess xx

  3. Theresa Campbell
    Theresa Campbell January 17, 2019 at 7:54 pm

    Thanks, Ann. I actually spotted the same top on an episode of Masters of sex, only in a gold color. Liz Caplan, the woman who played Virginia Johnson was wearing it. I loved it so much that I kept searching for one like it online. Lo and behold I finally found it in the red. I couldn’t believe my luck! It’s definitely one of my favorite tops. You can’t see in the photo, but it has a velvet collar too.

  4. Theresa Campbell
    Theresa Campbell January 17, 2019 at 7:47 pm

    OOOO, I’d love to travel around Europe by train. With all my clothes though 🙂

  5. Avatar
    Suzanne January 17, 2019 at 4:54 pm

    I haven’t taken a train ride like this but I’d love to. It looks quite civilized : )

    Your outfit was perfect! I think the fact that you chose brown boots really made it pop.

    You are a very handsome couple.

    I’ve taken train trips all throughout Europe and one as an excursion when we were on an Alaskan cruise. The train trips in Europe were always an adventure. We would go to sleep in one car and wake up with four new guys in the car sleeping around us. On one trip we had to get off the train at the border. Then the train left with our baggage still on it! My sister and I traveled for another few months without anything except the clothes on our back. That trip taught me some hard lessons.


  6. Avatar
    Ann January 17, 2019 at 3:10 pm

    How romantic! I must admit I too was thinking of murder mysteries, and I’m sure Agatha herself must have been impressed by the setting and your matching outfit! Your photos, especially the b/w ones, are very atmospheric. I’ve heard of Death by Chocolate: I’m sure it was very indulgent and that a good long hike was needed to burn off the calories 😉 Thanks for taking me along, I loved seeing the beautiful landscape of the Smoky Mountains. And I’m swooning over your lovely red wool knit top! xxx

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