Monday 31 December 2012

Right Here, Right Now

It's the biggest party night of the year and here's me with no make-up, flat shoes and bare fingernails. I'm too excited to worry, this is my travelling outfit for tonight, I'm all set for India.

I'm an unconventional bugger so there'll be no traditional 2012 blog retrospective from me. I'm not a fan of looking back or planning too far ahead, I'm a strictly living for the moment kind of girl.

That's not to say that 2012 hasn't been fantastic. I've celebrated 20 years of unwedded bliss, worn, acquired & sold lots of vintage clothes, met some wonderful women who I can now call dear friends, spent two months exploring India, lost entire weekends at festivals, drunk myself stupid, saw some amazing live music and lived every day as if it was my last.

(Of course there were a couple of crap bits but who cares about them?)

Especially for Freckleface: This is my luggage. My bag weighs in at 12kg and includes 8 tubes of sun cream and 20 paperback books.

Hopefully 2013 won't be much different although it'll be an uncharacteristically sober start. Have drink for me, will you?
(Not to worry, there'll be three weeks of bad behaviour to make up for it.)

The house-sitter's got the keys, my roots are done, I've shaved my legs and the bags are packed, locked and ready to go. Once we've checked in and have an early morning beer in hand we'll study the Rough Guide and decide where in Goa we'll head to first. We're two of a kind, Jon loathes forward planning, too.

My trusty denim waistcoat (Bought for £1 over twenty years ago) worn with a contemporary metal-trimmed jersey maxi (£2, Christian outreach charity shop) and a vintage cobweb shawl (20p, jumble sale).

Thanks for your virtual & real-life friendships. I'm linking to Patti's Visible Monday and joining her virtual party in the absence of a real one! 

 Wishing you all that's fabulous for 2013.
Love you!

Saturday 29 December 2012

She's In Parties

We won't be partying on New Year's Eve as we've got to be at the airport on New Year's Day at 6am so, rather than miss out on all the fun, we brought the celebrations forward a few days. Up went the hair, out came Helga's 1960s crimplene jumpsuit, my stripper heels and the biggest false eyelashes in my possession.

We OD'ed on snacks from the Gujarati sweet centre but still managed to squeeze in a curry later.

...and I dusted.

Look! No cobwebs on the chandelier.

The gang! 

After a few jars they couldn't resist going through my stock rails and dressing up. 

...and, if you can't beat 'em, join 'em. Look at us, like we're right back at the 1984 sixth form disco (minus the sobbing in the toilets).

All too soon the taxi rolled up and the gang were transported back home.

  Leaving us to dance the night away on our own.

We love having no near neighbours, we can play music really loud without anyone getting upset.

 This is me earlier, testing out my flamingo Xmas umbrella on the way out to pick up a Guardian. I've no idea where we'll be this time next week but I'm damned sure they'll be no need for a brolly, tights or a coat! 

Leather coat (from the fabulous Lucy) worn with a 1960s blouse, suede mini & boots (all second-hand, naturally)

I'm strictly booze free for a couple of days now (hmm..famous last words) so it's a quiet weekend consisting of catching up with blogs, watching films and finishing my packing.

Have a good one and see you soon.

Thursday 27 December 2012

Reel Around The Fountain

The last few days have been a heady mix of visitors bearing bottles, pub crawls, late night curries and non-stop music. We visited a newly re-opened pub on Christmas Eve and, with beer at £1.70 a pint, I really was reeling around The Fountain. 

It's a much-needed booze-free day today, Jon's lit the wood burner, Moonrise Kingdom is waiting and there's an indoor picnic planned for later.

I couldn't wait to give the 1960s suede waistcoat Liz gave me for Xmas an outing. My gifts, like the ones I gave, were a fabulous mix of vintage (1960s skunk money box, Vernon Ward print, framed cutting of 1867 newspaper article), useful (electric toothbrush, Havana Club rum, Lush stuff) or just plain crazy (scorpion vodka).

The mad hair? My roots are in dire need of re-doing but I'm holding on till Monday so I have good hair for Goa. 

Dragon ring, moonstone earrings and tribal cuff (Krista), Green glass rings (Em)
No rest for the wicked, I'm having the gang round tomorrow so my poor old liver's going to take another battering. I suppose I really ought to think about getting the duster out some time soon. 

Vintage patchwork maxi (eBay), Tribal choker (Edie Pop)
Hope you had a cool Yule.

See you soon.

Monday 24 December 2012


"Christmas? That's only for families with kids, mad folk and the three people left in England who actually still go to church, isn't it?" said the lady on the night bus, which probably explains my indifference to the whole shebang.

Being neither insane, religious or of the maternal persuasion, instead I'm raising my glass and toasting all that's good at this time of year such as finding cool things on eBay (like my 1960s fringed snakeskin catsuit) while the rest of the UK are preoccupied with Christmas shopping.

Drinking on a school night,

'cos no-one has to get up for work in the morning,

Enjoying even the normally quiet back street pubs being stuffed with revellers and a party vibe.

And watching TV in the afternoon with our animals, 

of both the furry and scaly variety.

      The mild temperatures have awoken Jacob from hibernation - hopefully temporarily!

So whether you celebrate Xmas or just life in general, here's to you all, enjoy 25th December and see you on the other side.

Sunday 23 December 2012

There Is No Love Between Us Any More...

...Or at least not until dusk. Jon's banished me from his sight for the rest of the afternoon as apparently my constant chatter whilst precariously balancing on the step ladder is slowly driving him mental. I've strict instructions to shut up, entertain myself and report back to the kitchen in time to meet the gang in the pub at 6pm.

Here's why I've driven him daft. I'd happily go without decorations but there was nothing interesting on the telly and I'd read yesterday's Guardian from cover to cover. The stocking's full of the cats' Xmas presents.

Offcuts of sparkly crimplene stuffed with the contents of an old cushion and stitched up.

 I made the patchwork chain from fabric offcuts and iron-on interfacing. The laurel, holly, pine cones and ivy are from the garden and 1960s metallic braid was from my sewing box.

The Vintage Vix fairy was a present from Emma last year. The "tree" is a couple of branches from a fir tree in the garden stuck in a vase which I covered with a Hessian sack I got given by a shopkeeper in Kerala, tied with a length of 1960s braid from my stash.

Total cost of my Xmas decor - NOTHING!

Last night was fantastic, Jesus Jones, PWEI and The Wonder Stuff sound as good now as they did way back when. Miles Hunt did the most fantastic cover of fellow Brummie band, Duran Duran's Planet Earth, which brought the house down.

I went to my first gig over 32 years ago and still haven't tired of sweaty mosh pits, ear-splitting guitars and overpriced lager. I'm not alone, most of the crowd were our age, reliving the heady days of the legendary Grebo scene of the late '80s.

This morning, despite the copious alcohol and post-midnight cheese on toast I got up to answer the door to the postman and man, was I pleased that I did. This fab parcel was my prize for winning The Small Fabric Of My Life blog giveaway, a gorgeous Pashmina which I'll be travelling to India in, Barry M and Jemma Kidd make-up, a cool nail file designed by the best Apprentice winner ever and some fab samples. Thanks, Jane! 

No prizes for guessing who sent this beautiful card. If you read Edie Pop's Homesick Blues blog you'll recognise her incredible art work immediately and if you don't go there and follow her immediately.

She also sent me a fits-like-it-was-tailor-made 1970s dress (which will be perfect for showing off my post-Goa tan) and groovy floral blouse, some incredible ethnic jewellery and the best tote bag I've ever seen.

It's me, only better!  I love her!

I'm off to catch up on blogs and then I'll getting my glad rags on and going to the pub. I might not be a Christmas kinda person but I never turn down a night out.

See you tomorrow with my fabulous eBay find (and if you're not around I'll wish you and yours a Happy Xmas now and see you on the other side!)


Friday 21 December 2012

Charity Shop Frock & Black Country Rock

The book Em sent me is totally captivating but the opening words make me laugh out loud:

"Walsall has been called the ugliest town in the world. One visitor described it as looking like Ceaușescu's Romania, only with fast-food outlets. It is notorious for its high incidence of mugging. Many of its shop windows are darkened by heavy steel bars. There is a pawnbroker and a mothy casino, and a pedestrianized shopping street strewn with an urban confetti of cigarette butts and chewing gum."

Walsall might not be the greatest town around but our charity shops often come up with the goods.

Like the KATI for Laura Phillips 1970s maxi dress I scored today.

I don't know anything about the label but the two dresses in my collection are amongst my all-time favourite frocks.

Blue peplum waist dress (From the 20p man at the car boot sale) and magic mushroom maxi (Darling Curtise)
                                               I was wearing this outfit earlier. 

Miss Revolution blouson (fabulous Jo), 1960s suede mini (Lovely Liz), Silk scarf (Em the great), Bermonda Trend hat and 1960s knee high boots (Walsall charity shops)
Despite the forecast promising a dry day it was raining when I left the house this morning and, as I needed both hands free to carry bags, I opted for a hat rather than do battle with a brolly. Strangely loads of people never recognise me when I have my hair up, I don't look that different, do I?

I missed a couple of parcels yesterday and picked them up earlier (and missed three more when I was out, Sod's Law strikes again!). The lovely Miss Magpie sent me this gorgeous beaded and crochet cardi and a fab orange sarong (its already replaced a manky one I'd packed) and the kitsch cake stand was from fabulous Alice. I might have to roast some chickpeas later just so I can try it out, it's perfect for snacks!

I'm very excited. We're off to Birmingham to see two top bands from my past tomorrow night, Black Country legends The Wonder Stuff & Pop Will Eat Itself (supported by Jesus Jones). It's been 25 years since I last saw them and I'll doubtlessly still be at the front dancing like a nutter.

Have a fab weekend!