Sunday 28 February 2010

Easy Like Sunday Morning

After a boozy night with some of our good mates and a late night Bangladeshi curry, Sunday ain't a day for doing more than catching up with the papers and downing gallons of fresh coffee.

Jon's sold our beautiful '68 Beetle, Tamula, and I've spent most of the morning skulking about indoors while he did his Arthur Dailey spiel. Despite the number of vehicles parked outside the window, I don't actually live on a car lot.

Bodysuit, waistcoat, Edwardian boots (Charity shop finds), Bayeaux tapestry maxi (Vintage shop),  Knitted hat (Jumble sale), Brass and wood jewellery (Various car boots and markets)

 My hair's looking a bit dodgy after yesterday's Ga-Ga inspired bow hence the hat.

Tribal choker handmade in brass ,originates from a hill tribe in Orissa, found in Tamil Nadu.

I paid £1 for 1970's coffee table at a jumble sale last week. The travel trunk (just seen), club chair and the vinyl pouffe are past jumble bargains and the rotary dial phone was retrieved from a skip after a drunken night out. I love vintage glass and have collected it for years, never paying more than a couple of quid a piece.

Saturday 27 February 2010

Interview With The Vampire


Living a life that centres around second-hand shops and you enter a whole new world, one not disturbed by fashion, celebrity or trends. There's a lot of odd-balls out there and I've come to know quite a few over the years. The guy who lives with his mum and is convinced that I'm Cher, Indian Elvis and the woman who dresses her poodle in baby-grows and wheels him about in an old Silver Cross pram. 

Women in the queue for the jumble sale will greet you with a cheery "Hello, darling" but have no qualms in ripping your arm off if you grab a coat at the same time as they do.

Recently a guy dressed head to toe in black siddled up to me in a charity shop whispering "On the scene, aren't you?" He reckoned that my long black hair and penchant for silver tribal jewellery was the sure sign of a fellow bloodsucker. He lowered his shades to wink a reddened eye and drew back his lips revealing sharp teeth, filed down into fangs. As he bade me farewell he rasped "You'd make a f***ing great vampire".

I picked this 1960's two piece up today in "Save The Children" for £5.99. I reckon I look like a demonic trolley dolly. 
Ga-Ga Airlines, anyone?

Friday 26 February 2010

Granny Takes A Trip

Knitted skirt suit and jacket (Jumble sale), Samba platforms (TopShop), Scarf and Sunglasses (Charity shop), Earrings (Mum's jewellery stash)

Well, yesterday's jumble sale certainly came up trumps! The lady in charge has taken a real shine to us and held back a bundle of hand-made skirt suits found in the loft of a wool shop that closed down back in the late 1970's. 

There's a certain granny-feel about these crazy acid bright creations but with the right accessories I quite like the vibe. Each suit set me back 70p and the immaculate vintage faux fur coat was 40p.

What do you think of my new sunglasses?
They're vintage Ted Lapidus and I spotted the white pair in a local charity shop this morning priced at £3.95. After I snaffled them the manager mentioned he had a second pair in the back and that I might as well have them for free as they were "a bit mad". Apparently they're Nicole Ritchie's glasses of choice and the replicas retail at £140.

 Possibly the most beautiful shoes I own, bought with vouchers so technically free.

Happy Friday, readers! Special big love to my dear friends, Jem and Helga, fellow fearless dressers and vintage fashion fanatics. If you haven't checked out their blogs yet why the heck not?

Thursday 25 February 2010

Green Issues

If you're not already bored, here's another frock from my recent haul of vintage shift dresses. 
Bit tricky this one, what do I wear with green and white? White tights are a definate no-no and green's far too matchy-matchy for my liking. They say blue and green should never be seen but somehow I reckon this colour combo kind of works, it's fresh and fun and makes me feel like spring's finally in the air.

Dress, hat, belt and hand bag (All vintage finds), Tods' python boots (car boot sale), Armwarmers and jacket (TopShop)

I fell in love with this TopShop jacket four years ago but there was no way on earth I was going to pay £45 on an impulse buy. I went into TopShop religiously, week after week, knowing that one day it would be mine, sure enough one appeared on the sale rail two months later knocked down to a tenner.

Wish me luck, I'm off to do battle with the local pensioners at the monthly Thursday afternoon Methodist church jumble. It's elbows at the ready and eyeballs sharpened as I attempt to nab a vintage gem from the mountains of discarded George at Asda, Primarni and mid '90's Next.

Wednesday 24 February 2010

Meet The Family

Another 20p 1960's shift dress from my jumble sale stash worn with silver lurex tights, 1940's kid skin evening gloves and grey patent platforms.

Name: Stephen Squirrel
Age: 4
Hobbies: Vintage Liberty scarves & climbing 

My awesome blogging pal Helga Von Trollop owns Stephen's antipodean doppelganger, Boris.

Name: Lucy Jean
Age: 19
Hobbies: Fine art and reggae music

Name: Polly Piglet
Age: 4
Hobbies: Speed dating and ornothology

Name: Vix
Age: Old enough to know better
Hobbies: Hedonism and vintage shopping

Same dress worn with silver patent platform boots (£10, River Island), Filigree earrings (Xmas present)

 Excuse the amp in the background and the somewhat bare walls, decorating of the stairs is currently in process.

Sterling silver cobra ring and moonstone set in a nest of silver vipers (Both from Indian street markets)

Tuesday 23 February 2010

Adventures In Clothing

Dressing is an adventure not a chore. 
Coat (Jumble sale), Hat and boots (Charity shop), Blouse (TopShop), Suede shorts (Clothes Show Live, Vintage Village)

I only own clothes I love, if I don't feel wonderful in something it goes.

I never buy for practicality or to match something I already own. I shop like a magpie, grabbing beautiful colours and fabulous fabrics from church halls and charity shops with no thought as to whether they will fit into my wardrobe. The only criteria I have for buying something is that I have to love it.

Crochet shawl (Jumble sale) 

As long as I feel fabulous I don't care if other people think I look ridiculous.

Monday 22 February 2010

History Lessons

Shift dress and boots (Vintage finds)   

The romantic in me ponders the history of every vintage garment I own. How much did it cost? What was the occasion it was bought for, where was it worn to, who first owned it and why was it given away?
What happened to the lady who donated 11 1960's shift dresses to last weeks' jumble sale? Is she no longer with us or did she just decide it was time to let go of something she'd kept for over forty years? Where did she wear them? Did she feel happy wearing them?
Most of my clothes have a story behind them. I can pull a dress from my wardrobe and recall the excitement I felt when I discovered it, where I found it and the places it's been. I love the fact that vintage clothing has many incarnations and a palpable history.

This eBay maxi dress came with a letter from the seller recalling how she fell in love with the dress after glimpsing it in a shop window. She religiously saved her wages from her Saturday job in Van Allan to afford it and wore it to the 1970 Isle of Wight Festival where it shared the very same air as Jimi Hendrix and Jim Morrison.
I've worn this dress to lots of music festivals, it's been to India three times and I even wore it when I met my hero, Michael Lang, organiser of the 1969 Woodstock festival.

This beautiful monogrammed vanity case bought at a car boot sale came complete with some history. In amongst the heaps of vintage buttons, broken jewellery and embroidery silks I found the previous owner's employment contract, appointing her manager of  Beatties' "Gown Department" in 1949. There were also wedding invitations, a hair dressing appointment card and greetings cards from the same era. Well worth the £3 price tag.

My Mum bought me this fascinating book from a charity shop.The author has a lifelong love of vintage clothing and recalls the story of her life through the items in her wardrobe.

Amazon Link

Sunday 21 February 2010

About Last Night

What I wore last night. 

The dress is another from my stash of 11 vintage shifts I found at a jumble sale this week. To be honest I'm not a lover of pink and despite my high heels and long hair I'm not what you'd call a girly-girl. Chocolate and cupcakes don't float my boat, I can't get interested in chick-lit or rom-coms and I'm more comfortable with a pint of real ale down the pub than a glass of the bubbly stuff in a city centre wine bar.


I played down the colour of the dress by going overboard with the turquoise accessories. The bag was a hand-made gift from a talented friend and the shoe boots are Dune seconds from a stall on my local market.

The cost of the outfit?
Vintage 60's dress - 20p
Shoe boots - £7
Vinyl gloves - 99p
Tights - Gift
Bag - Gift
Earrings - 60p

Total - £8.79

Thanks for the lovely comments left on my last post. In answer to those who left questions:

Bella - I like to browse the high street for inspiration and trawl the charity shops and boot sales for similiar pieces. I agree with you, fashion is usually a rehash of past styles just put together in a different way. 

Vicki - Thanks for the compliment! Yoga and lots of swimming keep my arms toned. They used to be embarrasingly scrawny but plenty of exercise have at last made them fit for public inspection!

Rose & Bird: I search my local newspaper's Classifieds on-line for jumble sales and I'm always scouring the adverts in local shop windows and community centre noticeboards. 

Heart Shaped Bruise: Thanks for following. I'd love to follow you but I can't seem to access your blog.