Tuesday 28 February 2012

Vintage Platforms & A Heap Of Questions

I've been tagged so many times lately I thought it'd be rude to put it off any longer. If you don't want to plough through all my answers (and I don't blame you if you don't)you can always admire my fabulous new-to-me original 1970s wood platforms I won on eBay last week.

I have to post 11 random things about myself.

  • I've been an extra in a zombie film. http://www.ispitonyourrave.com/
  • The furthest I've travelled from home is Gili Air, off the coast of Lombok, Indonesia.
  • The Stray Cats at Birmingham Odeon in 1979 was the first gig I ever went to when I was 13.
  • I've never worn foundation. 
  • I became a vegetarian when I found out meat came from animals at the tender age of 18 months old. I've never eaten it since.
  • I own every record ever released on vinyl by Blondie.
  • When I was still at school and living at home I used to wait till my parents were in bed, sneak out of the house and go clubbing at The Nightingale, Birmingham's legendary gay club, until the early hours. I never got found out. 
  • I've been barred from more than one town centre pub for dancing on the bar.
  • The first house I owned was in the red light district of town. I'd often be visited by the local pimps offering to make me rich.
  • I was so jealous when my brother was born that I tipped him out of his carry cot, pushed his pram through a plate glass door and cut all the pom-poms off his clothes.
  • At the V Festival a few years ago Jon and I went to see different bands and some scumbag roofie-d my beer, luckily I was rescued before anything untoward happened.

Here's Sandy's questions:
  • What is your favourite dessert? I hate sweet food so (vegetarian) cheese and biscuits.
  • If you could live in any decade which would it be and why? I already lived in my dream period (1966-1973) but was too young to remember much of it.
  • What is your favourite Disney film? None, I can't stand that soppy crap.
  • Who is your favourite historical person and why? Gandhi, the dude rocked.
  • What is your favourite book? Shantarram by Gregory David Roberts.
  • If you were given £1000 to spend in any one place, where would you choose? I'd fly to India, staying in heritage homes & Maharajah's palaces until the cash ran out.
  • What is your favourite childhood memory? The long hot summer of 1976.
  • If you could hold a dinner with only 2 other guests (dead or alive, celebrity or historical) who would they be? Rabindranath Tagore and Jimi Hendrix, the former for his wisdom and the latter for eye candy.
  • What would you choose to be your last supper? If I was about to kick the bucket food would be the last thing on my mind.
  • Name one beauty product you couldn't live without. Black eye liner.
  • If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be and why? India because it's beautiful, colourful and has the best food and the most wonderful people on the planet.

Here are birthday girl, Sue's:
  • What was the name of your first love? I'm not a sentimental sort so it'd have to be Oxfam.
  • What was the first car you owned? I can't drive but I went halves with Jon and bought our first VW Camper van for our 40th birthdays in 2006.
  • Who is your favourite TV character? Jax Teller from Sons Of Anarchy, a bad ass Hell's Angel with a heart.
  • How did you meet your partner? I was playing pool with a couple of guys in our local biker-friendly pub, Jon was standing behind me asking someone about a song called "Soul Train" and couldn't remember who sung it. I yelled "Swansway" and the rest was history.
  • What pisses you off the most? Bigotry and self pity.
  • If you weren't living where you are now, where would you live and why? India because it's the best place in the world.
  • What's your favourite drink? Either rose wine, India Pale Ale or Havana Club Rum with fresh lime and cola.
  • Confess something naughty! When I was a penniless student I accepted an invitation to a posh restaurant for dinner from a man I didn't fancy, ate my dinner and escaped through the window in the ladies' toilet.
  • If you could be reincarnated, who would you be and why? Helen, the legendary Bollywood vamp.
  • What skill would you like to learn? I'd love to be able to drive but I know humanity is safer without me on the roads.
  • If this was your last day on the planet, how would you spend it? At a music festival on a baking hot sunny day with good company, great music, unlimited alcohol and unadulterated hedonism.

Here are Claire's

  • Who is your most bizarre celebrity crush? Jarvis Cocker and Noel Fielding both make me go weak at the knees. 
  • What is/Would be your karaoke song? I murder Gypsies, Tramps and Thieves. 
  • If you could invent your own course and teach it, what would it be? Success at jumble sales & The art of dressing like a trollop.
  • Zombie Apocalypse weapon of choice? No idea, I'd leave it to Jon, he's great in a crisis.
  • What period in history would you most like to visit? I was around in the late sixties but I'd like to have been old enough to remember it.
  • What's the most unusual food you've eaten? Probably that dodgy flapjack I bought from a hippy at Glasto which made me very silly.
  • Have you met any celebrities? A few. The most exciting was Michael Lang, the guy who organised Woodstock. Also lots of musicians as the West Midlands is a veritable hot bed of rock stars plus eminent politicians, news readers and royalty from my days in corporate hospitality.
  • How long have you been thrifting/op shopping/jumble sale-ing? Since I could walk. I inherited my passion for second-hand stuff from my Mum & Grandma so I've been dragged around such places since the 1960s.
  • Which childhood cartoon/tv program scared you the most? Will 'O' The Wisp.
  • What are 3 of your favourite books? Shantarram, God Of Small Things, White Tiger.
  • What is your favourite film? Woodstock, the movie.

 Here are Melanie's
  • If you could go shopping in any era, which would it be? The late 1960s.
  • Official other half aside, who would your dream date be? Mick Jagger circa 1969
  • Who were/was the last band/artiste you saw live? Mogwai 
  • Do you have any phobias? Spiders.
  • What is your favourite film? See previous answer.
  • What is your favourite song? It changes all the time. Anything sung with passion and attitude.
  • How tall are you (I have a near obsessive need to know how tall people are). Nowhere near tall enough.
  • What is your earliest memory. Lying in my cot watching the wind blowing the curtains.
  • Tea, or coffee? Both.
  • Favourite literary character. Lin in Shantarram.
  • Favourite actor/actress.  Amitabh Bachchan and Sharmila Tagore.
Saluki fake fur jacket (£2, car boot sale), Suede mini skirt (£2.50, part of a suit from eBay), Hindi tee and beaded earrings (India), Madeira embroidered basket (£1.95, Acorns Hospice), Wood platforms (£13.20, eBay)

Still awake? Don't worry I won't tag anyone else but feel free to answer as many questions you fancy.
Thanks for the wonderful gardening advice, I knew you'd be able to help.
See you soon.

Monday 27 February 2012

The Good, The Bad And The Downright Scary

The good? That's this gorgeous Indian embroidered maxi Sabine kindly sent me last week. I wore it out on Saturday night and it's set to become a firm favourite. I love it.

Notice a slight difference in my favourite posing patch? Whilst the weather's been so Spring-like I've been busy weeding, pruning and digging. 

The fennel, comfrey, sea holly and flax have been dug up and chucked on the compost heap, as they've been killed by the frost, leaving just a handful of spring bulbs and poppies. The pots have been scrubbed out and the galvanised steel window boxes are ready for planting once I've checked out what's going cheap on the market tomorrow.

I've pruned back the herb patch leaving rosemary, sage, chives, alpine strawberries, tarragon, oregano and rocket.

I've dug out a dead tree and cut down the brambles in this corner,creating an exciting den for the cats.

The bad? My gardening outfit. It will hardly surprise you to know that no shop was entered to create this ensemble, the tiger print leggings, Jethro Tull tour teeshirt and Converse boots all came from various jumble sales. Oh, the glamour.

The scary? My attempt at sorting out the garden's a mere drop in the ocean. The blasted thing goes on for another 90 metres with a grand total of twenty-seven trees, fourteen of which have preservation orders on them and despite our pleas to the council they won't even let us prune them.

There's parts I can't reach without a scythe. There's a pond just to the left if you look closely.

It's all so big, overwhelming and scary. Most of it's too shady to grow anything and it's permanently covered in a carpet of leaves.

Any tips, ideas and advice?

Fortunately it's just started raining so I can down tools and forget about it for the rest of the day.

See you soon.

Sunday 26 February 2012

Cat In A Hat

I thought I'd try out my pimp-tastic hat when I walked to the corner shop yesterday morning.

Then I changed into ripped leggings, an old band t-shirt, shocking pink gardening gloves and jumble sale Converse and started digging up the garden.

Jade and silver pendant (Goa, 2004)

We found time to glam up, head into town and get rip-roaringly drunk last night but now it's back to yet more intensive labour and appalling clothing.

Barry M Cyan Blue nails with a heap of tribal jewellery (third ring from left and Chinese character bangle from the fabulous Helga)

This patch of ground should be unrecognisable next time I pose by it.

Vintage hat (£1, last week's jumble sale, £1) worn with Top Shop tiger top (£3, Acorns Hospice), denim waistcoat & 70s straw bag (30p each, jumble sale),  Lime green bell bottoms (handmade by me from crimplene bought from a car boot sale)

Hope you're having a brilliant weekend. 

Friday 24 February 2012

Freakin' Fabulous Friday

If I hadn't had enough excitement this week with the news that my darling Krista's coming to visit, look what the postman delivered, only this incredible vintage midi skirt, once owned by the gorgeous Sabine's auntie. It's loud, it's 1970s and it's knitted, I've got the feeling I'll be living in this.

Also in the parcel was this stunning Indian embroidered maxi dress which was Sabine's Mum's back in the day. It's a perfect fit, I love it.

Receiving parcels from favourite bloggers is definitely my favourite thing on a Friday .

I exercised restraint in the chazza shops today. I donated three bags full of Jon's old clobber, a pair of shoes that cripple me and a heap of paperback books and only came back with two purchases, a Native American beaded pendant and a groovy tiger print top.

Sabine wasn't the only blogging goddess sending parcels of joy, Polly Piglet's loving this pretty antique throw  lovely Emma sent me yesterday.

Vintage midi skirt worn with a 1980s jersey bodysuit, go-go boots, a patchwork duffel bag and a heap of ethnic jewellery.

It's a quiet night in for us tonight, there's a bottle of Havana Club rum on ice, a fridge full of food and an entire series of Sons Of Anarchy to catch up on.

Have a fab weekend and see you soon.

Thursday 23 February 2012

Jumble Sale Joy

Another day, another jumble sale. 
I knew that if I waited long enough the perfect denim waistcoat would eventually turn up and here it is, snaffled for the princely sum of 30p from the kid's section. It may be an age 9/10 but it fits just fine. Lacking in the bosom department has it's advantages.

There's no time for hesitation at a jumble, dither at your peril. Sometimes the most mundane of things look surprisingly decent on so, if something catches your eye, trust your instincts and grab it. This polyester dress looked like nothing at first glance but then I spotted the green lurex trim and was pleased to discover the 1970s label once I got home.

From back in the days when Wallis was a bit more cutting edge than it is now.

This pretty hand-made crochet shawl was hidden amongst the bedding, even if you have no interest whatsoever in household linens it's best to leave no single section of the jumble ignored.

I also picked up this 1970s straw bag,

these 1960s blingy gold sandals (in my size)....

...and not two vintage candlewick bedspreads, still in the original packaging...

...but four! All in the most fabulously lurid of colours.

1970s Wallis midi dress (40p) with denim waistcoat (30p), crochet shawl (20p), knitted bag (30p) all from today's jumble, worn with Dolcis suede platforms (seen HERE), crochet beret (from the gorgeous Elizabeth) and heaps of tribal jewellery.
There's more but it's hanging on the line drying in the sunshine. 
Hooray for a beautiful Spring day!

PS: Hello to my friend Kathryn in St Louie and to her girls Lucille, Esther, Helen, Dolores, Mary, Marcella, Annabelle, Prissy and an extra big hug to Miss Agnes.Thanks for the wonderful email, you ladies made my day!

Tuesday 21 February 2012

Market Day

Our historic market has been trading since 1219 and despite the arrival of the huge 24 hour Asda (Walmart) superstore to the town a few years ago it's still the cheapest place to buy fresh fruit and veg.

Once a week we walk a mile into town and stock up on whatever's going cheap.

Every bowl on this stall costs £1.

This is one of the town's prized art installations, the Spirit of Tranquillity, but better known to us locals as the "Hair in the Square". She was originally a water feature but our spoil-sport council turned off the water supply after the kids kept pouring washing-up liquid into the water supply engulfing the town in bubbles.

This statue is a tribute to Sister Dora, our answer to Florence Nightingale.

There's over a hundred stalls selling everything from game, seafood, locally made pork pies and scratchings, to TopShop seconds, underwear, make-up, haberdashery and antiques.

You can get your palm read.

You can even stock up on spring bedding plants and the first of the daffodils.

Check out the guy in the wolf fleece, the height of fashion in our town. You can get dog or horse versions as well, a snip at £5.99.

1960s velvet trimmed swing jacket (£3, charity shop), Suede go-go boots (£1, car boot sale), dress made by me from a 1950s curtain (20p, jumble sale), wool beret (20p, jumble sale)

Check out those boarded up shops behind me, set to be demolished to make way for Primark. Can you see the yellow scaffolding to the top right of the picture? That's the remains of The Overstrand, where The Charlatans played their first ever gig in 1988. (Well guessed, Lucy & Just Another Wardrobe Experience).

Here's this week's shopping. Pak Choi, capsicums, red cabbage, swede, chillies, red & white onions, garlic and ginger, apples, lemons, cucumber, lettuce, spuds, mushrooms, carrots and bananas.

After lugging that lot home I needed tea.

Looks like we're having spicy veg Masala for dinner, how about you?

Monday 20 February 2012

The 1950s Cocktail Dress Gets An Outing

It's no secret that I'm not a big fan of Fifties fashion but as so many of you loved the 20p cocktail frock I scored at Friday night's jumble sale I thought I'd better give it a whirl.

Bendy arm haters look away now.

A 1950s loving chick would probably team this with an elegant French pleat, dainty pearls, elbow length gloves and pointy shoes but that'd be one step too far from my comfort zone. I'm more Grace Slick than Grace Kelly.

Antique cloth bag (£4, car boot sale), Urban Outfitters neon and perspex belt (Xmas present), Barry M Cyan Blue nail varnish and a heap of tribal jewellery (including a carnelian ring from my beloved Krista)

Instead I threw on heaps of jewellery, a hint of psychedelia and my favourite platform boots and felt ready to face the supermarket.

Contemporary neon choker, 1960s psychedelic scarf (both car boot sale buys)

I'm still working on Jon modelling his new frock coat for the blog. He never used to mind posing for the camera back in the old days.

Don't tell him I've posted this, he'll kill me.

Happy Monday!
See you soon.