Tuesday 31 July 2012

Hey Ho, Lets Sew! The Subversive Seamstresses

Normally it's just Liz & I in our monthly sewing circle but as it's the school summer holidays (although you'd never guess if you'd been outside today) the other Liz joined us.

Liz is a professional and she's got all the kit (including a terrifying over-locker and two sewing machines) so we went over to her place, a converted toll keeper's cottage on the canal tow path. 

Liz's scary industrial machine!

Aretha the mannequin.

Inspiration for Liz's project, new cushions to liven up her lounge.

Liz claims to be a sewing novice,

but under Liz's guidance she knocked up these beauties,

using vintage scarves and remnants from Liz's stash.

Pretty impressive for a first-timer, huh?

Liz also helped her in revamping this fabulous 1970s maxi skirt which was inhibiting her ability to walk.

Liz put the finishing touches to one of her handmade bags (her website's HERE

This amazing panel is embroidery she's done on the sewing machine.

She supervised me taking in these two 1970s maxi skirts Sarah and Helga sent me. They've been on the to-do pile for ages and now I can finally wear them without braces to hold them up.
Definitely worthy of a Ta-Dah Tuesday!

Sarah sent me this amazing Young Edwardian maxi dress back in April but it was too big, too long and just looked wrong.

Now it's been taken in & up and the sleeves whipped off I love it so much that I went home in it.

See you soon!

Sunday 29 July 2012

Jumble, Jumble

Despite the wine and a late night spent blubbering in front of the Olympic opening ceremony I was up bright and early, queuing outside the church jumble sale at 8.30am yesterday morning ready to exchange my pennies for yet more random tat.

What did I buy? This 1970s Spinney terracotta underskirt which is far too cute to hide away under a maxi.

One of two hand-made feather head-dresses, ready for next weekend's festival frolics!

....and a mini-me version of my embroidered basket (last seen here). I moan about teenage hipsters wearing Ramones tee shirts when they can't even name a song by them and I'm almost as bad, I've got two Madeira bags and I've never even visited the island.

Not a lot but for a spend of less than a quid and a fun half-an-hour bantering with fellow bargain hunters it sure beats a morning in a soulless shopping mall flicking through racks of the same depressing old identikit clobber.

Barry M's Lemon Ice Cream worn with bangles including one from Lakota and Mrs Alnutt, rings include ones from Dee and Heather.

I found this wooden cross when I was walking along Varkala beach in Kerala,

I just hope it fell off a loved-up hippy rather than a drowned fisherman.

1970s underskirt worn with a Broderie Anglaise top I made from a jumble sale pillow case, tan leather belt (50p, Age UK) and cherry red wedges (Topshop, 2007)
Liz and Adrian are on their way round so I'm off to chuck Thursday's car boot and jumble finds in the cupboard of doom and make the place look a bit more respectable and less like an Oxfam sorting depot.

Enjoy the rest of your weekends and see you soon.

Friday 27 July 2012

White Riot

It's been a perfect Summer's day here in the Midlands, I've spent the afternoon lounging on the lawn in a bikini (a vintage one naturally, darlings!) while Jon brought refreshments out on demand. 

I bought this 1970s cruise dress from a chazza back in December (last worn HERE), it's been languishing in the wardrobe ever since awaiting a suitably warm evening and tonight's the night.

Not that we're doing much more than drinking wine and chilling on the deck but as you well know, a day without dressing up is a day wasted.

Barry M Mint Green worn with bangles from Janne (on the right), inherited bangles and white enamel ones from a friend in India (on the left) and a turquoise ring from Miss Magpie.

The fabulous Ivy Black sent me these pretty glass beads.

I've accused Jon of making me look stupidly short in these photos but he pointed out that's how nature made me and that I'd have to get over it or go and put some shoes on & start again and as I'm all for keeping it real and blogging about what I'm actually wearing here I am in my stumpy, short-arsed glory.

It's an early start tomorrow as the jumble sale kicks off at the godforsaken hour of 9am in the morning so best not get too carried away with the rosé if I'm doing battle with the legendary Black Country grannies!

Have a fabulous weekend & see you soon.

Thursday 26 July 2012

Rumble In The Jumble

Remember my hand-made striped orange bell-bottoms from last week? 

I liked them but they weren't making my heart skip a beat, so I added a little something extra ...

Now I'm frilled with them! Bell Bottom Blues no more. Don't ask me how I did it, I made it up as I went along and probably couldn't repeat the fabulous frilly hem if I tried.

Hindu pendant (50p, car boot sale)

 (Stones badge from Clare)
Happy Birthday, Mick!

Dragon ring from Krista

What's this, chipped Barry M nail paint again? That's because I've been jumbling and car booting today and rummaging like my life depended on it.

Wanna see what I got?

Clockwise from top left: 1930s Garstin of England leather travelling wardrobe case, 1960s suede jerkin, Italian Raffia handbag, Papa's gotta brand new bag, retro saucepan (to match our existing set), 3 x 1970s patterns, Kitsch rose decal, 3 x 1960s paperbacks, Emerald green Shantung silk, Large tin filled with handmade & retro costume jewellery, 1970s chopping board, novelty cow tow bar, rabbit decal, Australia souvenir scarf, vintage 70s fake fur jacket, rabbit decal, 1960s fake fur jacket

(The most expensive buy was the suede jerkin at a whopping £3 each, the rest was £2 or less)

Was I too hot in my acetate catsuit? You do make me giggle. It's 28 degrees here, pleasantly warm but hardly comparable to pre-Monsoon Goa in April.

Made-by-me bell bottom pants (using a 1969 pattern from Tamera), retro Richard Shops denim waistcoat (courtesy of Ronnie), 1970s silk Indian-made camisole (50p, Cancer Research), 1980s Country Casuals suede belt (50p, Age UK)
I've just discovered a bottle of pear cider that had wedged itself behind the freezer, a fine accompaniment to Team GB's Olympic footie match later.

See you soon!

Tuesday 24 July 2012

Cool For Cats

I know I've got enough retro catsuits to sink a battleship but when I spotted this psychedelic 1960s acetate number up for auction on eBay last week with no bids and twenty minutes left to run I just knew it had to be mine.

It's fabulous having a combination of weird taste and being smaller than your average Brit, there's rarely any competition for the kind of stuff I like and 20 minutes later this was mine for 99p.

Barry M Turquoise worn with three cuff bangles, a 1960s Denmark-made ring in beaten metal & amber and a Lamani tribal coin ring.

I've chipped my nail varnish in a frantic attempt to fill the garden recycling bin before the bin men get here.

1960s catsuit worn with Swedish Hasbeens (from the fabulous Sarah), Indian velvet tote (25p, jumble sale), Huge paper hat (£1, car boot sale), Bone & turquoise wolf choker (50p, car boot sale)

I love this sunshine but it sure makes finding a shady spot to pose in a headache.

No Man's Land aka the top of our garden.

Bleached to buggery!

I received a parcel of joy today from the lovely Louise containing an off cut of suede, a seersucker table cloth, nail foils, some fab jewellery including a groovy 1960s bracelet, a pretty purse and a book about relocating to France which I'd commented on when she reviewed it on her blog...thanks, Lou!

Off to catch a few more rays!
Check out my interview over on my friend Janet's blog if you get a minute.

See you soon.

Sunday 22 July 2012

Here Comes The Sun

At long last Summer's finally made an appearance and I've been able to give the parasol I picked up on my Indian adventures back in April it's maiden outing.

Let's hope it'll be out a lot more in the coming weeks.

I made this skirt this morning from a retro bed cover (last seen HERE) & a groovy 1972 McCall's dressmaking pattern kindly sent my way by Liz. Considering we started boozing just after 6pm last night I'm pretty amazed I managed to knock up anything remotely wearable.

This is the bikini top I bought on Friday, I think it's part of a fancy dress costume but in my book nothing could possibly be too fancy for everyday wear.

Barry M Turquoise worn with rings from Krista, Miss Magpie & Heather.

Bikini top (75p, Acorns Hospice), Handmade maxi skirt (made from a 70s bed cover, £1.50, car boot sale), Rajasthani parasol (£4, India)

Off to catch up with some blogs before I eat my fourth curry in as many days.
Hope your weekend have been as good as ours.
See you soon.

PS I'm featured on Janet's blog today, HERE! She's gorgeous, her house & garden are to die for, she's a vegan and loves Jack White & if you haven't met her already then you're missing out.