Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Look Back In Zandra


I don't usually dress up for blog posts, my outfit photos are just what I've worn that day, but I'm helping to get the monthly jumble sale ready this afternoon and I reckon that, even for me, a mourning jacket and Great-Grandfather's top hat might be a tad impractical for humping tables around and sorting through bags of stained underwear.


So I'm just posing in yesterday's top chazza find, an unworn, early 1970s, 100% silk maxi skirt by Zandra Rhodes. What a result, I get to own a piece of iconic British vintage design and two of Birmingham's homeless charities benefit!


As it's almost Halloween, why not accessorise it with some of my dead ancestors' creepy belongings? My Victorian pinchbeck mourning brooch featuring Oscar Wilde lookalike, my great-great Grandfather.


My great-Grandmother's silver and blue enamel pocket watch - which still holds perfect time (except on a witch like me, capable of making time stand still whenever a timepiece goes within inches of me).


My Great-great grandmother's mourning jacket which has featured numerous times previously, but who doesn't love drooling over jet beads, shot silk, black velvet and a bad-ass Victorian bustle? 


The Christy's of London top hat which belonged to Grandma's father who worked on the Liverpool & Manchester railway. Check him out HERE.


Who doesn't look good in a top hat? Surely the sexiest headgear known to man.
(Linking to Judith's Hat Attack.)


Like most grumpy Brits we won't be doing anything for Halloween other than locking the gates at sunset to keep out any passing trick or treaters - there's no way Jon's sharing his stash of Haribo with anyone.

See you soon!

85 comments:

  1. What a great find that skirt was - fab colour on you!

    Love the top hat and tails.... perfect for Halloween, or any other time of the year! Have fun rumbling in the jumble ;) xxx

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  2. I wore a top hat everywhere (except school, obv) for about a year when I was a kid -- I was thinking about it recently, and this reminded me again. I only stopped wearing it because the hat was knackered and eventually collapsed into itself. Also I had a growth spurt and it no longer fit...

    I'm sad to say that for some reason there seems to be NO photographic evidence of it, though.

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  3. You look far more suitable for Whitby Goth Fest this weekend than i will....but im still going

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  4. That is a bloody outstanding jacket.

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  5. You look wonderful! You need a Hallowe'en party to go to. Come to ours! xxx

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  6. Whoa! LOVE that hat! Gorgeous Husband actually has 2 top hats. I wonder if one of them would fit me???

    That jacket is so fabulous. I want to sew one like that. The bustle is just right. Indeed I have suffiient upholestry to fill it out.

    Looking forward to seeing you on the 23rd.

    Cheers,
    Rosemary from
    www.foreveronthecatwalkoflife.blogspot.com

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  7. oh, swooning here over your skirt! You look straight from a Victorian novel in that crazy-good top hat too. xox

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  8. One of my all-time favorite posts! So glad you had time for a bit of dressing up to show us all these magnificent treasures. You're right, top hats are darn sexy (and Morrissey is a god).
    Tickets booked for the 29th! See you then.

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  9. I don't blame you for wanting to dress up, that skirt is fab - what a find! Tick or treating isn't that big of a thing where I live luckily, I wouldn't answer the door even if it was though xx

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  10. Vix. you looks so deliciously Gothic! I always enjoy seeing you in all of your inherited, Victorian regalia. And what an incredible find that Zandra Rhodes skirt is! She's just the coolest!

    I LOVE Halloween, but I'm with you and Jon on answering the door for trick or treaters.

    xxx

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  11. Ooh that hat!! And the pocket-watch is beautiful - my auntie makes time stop when she wears watches and things. Strange!
    xx

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  12. Genial look!!!
    Besos
    http://judithbysucre.blogspot.com.es

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  13. You have so many stylish cherished family heirlooms. This outfit is bad ass.

    Vintagehoneybee.blogspot.com

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  14. You could be the sexiest extra ever in one of those period dramas about Jack the Ripper. I can just see you bustling around fog laden streets with your skirts trailing in...... yes well maybe not, shame to spoil the Zandra! Dying to know what you paid for it, was it the usual Black Country tuppence ha'penny?
    I'm one of those grumpy people you refer to, more into Bonfire night meself. xxxxxxxxxxx

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  15. I love this! I know everyone will say it but you look so Stevie Nicks-esque. That skirt is a tremendous new acquisition. I adore it. And of course I love the mourning jacket and jewellery. My favourite recent outfit of yours by far xx

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  16. Best outfit ever, stunning. Everyone should wear a hat, especially a topper. Your hair looks amazing too, so long.

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  17. Oh Vix this is EXACTLY how I pictured you in the Zandra skirt--it was just too fabulous for you NOT to model it!!

    The whole outfit is just amazing!! you sporting your relatives jewels makes me want to go retrieve my great-grandmother's stuff and wear it very soon!!

    You're a watch killer too?? I can wear cheap-o ones from Walmart (the $5 ones) but put a nice Seiko or such on me and it stops dead!! My great-grandmother was the same!!

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  18. see you just come by this fantastic style of yours hereditarily. i just made up that word. but truly it is in your genes. you look so FAB today. I love it. x

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  19. I've said it before and I'll say it again - I love that top hat.
    It is wonderful that you have so many family heirlooms, both sets of my grandparents were bombed out during WWII and lost everything except what they were wearing (not that they had much anyway.)

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  21. I covet your outfit, but alas even if I did rustle it off of you, that tiny waist would not fit my voluptuous curves. Sigh, you look FABULOUS, and how wonderful to find a Zandra skirt. x

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  22. You are one of the few dames I know that can wear a top hat and mourning jacket and not look like you're wearing a costume. A top hat IS a sexy hat, especially when worn by a woman, and it suits you perfectly. It is wonderful that you are able to wear things that belonged to your ancestors. I have nothing that belonged to any of mine.

    I purchased a magazine in New York called "Suitcase" with Zandra Rhodes on the cover because two of my friends were featured in it. I would love to own one of her designs!

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  23. Can you hear me screaming from here?!?! I am dying over so many things in this post! You look frightfully gorgeous in that mourning jacket and top hat all with such cool family ties! And are you shitting me with that Zandra skirt! This kicks ass! OMG OMG omfg! You are getting me into the spirit of things! Love you!xxxxxxxxx

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  24. you look so flamingly wonderfully badass in this outfit, seriously good! Top hat, damn straight looks blazing cool!!it's so fab to have the pic of your great great Grandad adorning you - I don't stop watches but have a weird static that can affect tech stuff, it's a little bizarre and inconvenient! x x

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  25. Dramatic, but not more than other days. And the skirt is so luxury and beautiful. I can almost hear the sound of it.

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  26. Your 1970s silk maxi-dress looks fabulous styled with your long pretty hair and top-hat! Accessorizing your amazing vintage look with the brooch and pocket watch works brilliantly.
    Alas, I will most likely follow a similar plan to you and Jon, hide from the trick or treaters, and yet again fail to get my French aid's outfit together in time for Halloween. I'm very envious of your ability to make time stand still whenever a timepiece comes within inches. I would love to be able to slow time or even rewind it. What ever you and Jon do or don't do, I hope you have a fabulous Halloween!


    http://www.full-brief-panties.blogspot.com/

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  27. ohhhh, victorian fabulousness!!, such a pretty outfit you're wearing, love your jacket and hat and all your dead ancestors creepy belongings!!, whahahaha, you're lovely!
    There's not any tradition about trick or treat here, so we will be free of children full of sugar!
    besos

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  28. Just love that outfit :)

    I won't be doing Halloween this year - this road is so busy and I can't afford the sweets. Instead I am off out to Halloween quiz and the boys will be ignoring the world and glued to their computers!

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  29. Vix, you look spectacular! I especially the top hat. Did you know Zandra Rhodes lives in San Diego part time?

    xo, Bonnie

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  30. Ooh simply head to toe stunning Vix! I love how everything fits you perfectly. Yes, the hat...dead sexy!
    Erm did you know Haribo sweets aren't vegetarian? xx

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  31. Holy shit! So gorgeous you look in that outfit!!
    Love love ....
    Xxx

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  32. @Silk Path - yes, Jon's not a vegetarian, just me. x

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  33. You look amazing, Vix!!! I saw Dracula (the new NBC tv show) yesterday and you would totally fit there! Love the skirt and the top hat! great make up, too! HAPPY HALLOWEEN, DOLL!

    http://bohemiansbanquet.blogspot.com/

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  34. My mind just melted. Too much good stuff. You look so amazing! I love the hat, the coat, the cameo, the skirt, to you. I could go on, but I need to pace myself. My girl crush goes on unabated, 4 years in. xo.

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  35. Stunning outfit and the jewellery is perfect. You really know how to put a great outfit together and make it look more than perfect. Oh, and your hair is just beautiful, so long.

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  36. Squeal.....you have had the most wonderful run of finding the best of vintage designers pieces......amazing.
    The top hat is truly beautiful.....your family treasures are so special.
    Love V

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  37. Absolutely loving the outfit Vix. Very fitting in time for Halloween.

    X x

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  38. You're so lucky to have pieces that have stood the test of time to wear and mix up with such an awesome find in that skirt. It's a amazing.

    Wish we had a front gate to lock to keep the trick or treaters away, but whatever we do they come knocking, the perils of living on the corner I guess.

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  39. Zandra Rhodes, honestly the WM is the epicentre of the secondhand universe. I find nothing anywhere near that exciting. Do you think it was from that same woman again? You do look amazing in it, so slender and gorgeous.
    I love anything to do with your relatives, you really bring them to life through your posts. Amazing that you have their clothes and artifacts in your possession. I'd love to hear all their stories.
    I must buck the trend, I rather enjoy all the little skeletons and ghosts turning up on my doorstep all excited. And Q enjoys all the leftover chocolate in the days afterwards. Everyone wins! xxxxx

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  40. What on EARTH is Haribo?!
    Now, you know I get frisky as all HELL when you get your family Victoriana out!! ARGH!!! We went to our favourite part of Oamaru on Monday, the Victorian Precinct, for a good dribble, but you've just got it going on in your wardrobe.....for feck's sake!!!
    That Zandra skirt is magnificent, and such a stunning find! Bloody love it-and doesn't it work a treat with a Victorian touch?! Your hair looks like a cascade of ravens wings.....you're making me all poetic now! LOVE IT!
    Love YOU!
    Love Helga xxxXXXxxx

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  41. Ha ha, my husband's the same. I brought home some chocolate tonight and he looked horrified that they were for tomorrow night.
    he has sneaked four mini Mars bars already.
    I absolutely love that skirt. You are going to keep it?

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  42. Wowzers...you look stunning Vix! I love that photo of all your hair flowing down your back. I'm well impressed that you can easily fit into your heirloom mourning jacket, too! xxx

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  43. I love the outfit and Zandra Rhodes...I just love her! I love her makeup she wears everyday. She even goes to bed with it and in the morning she just goes over it again if she is running late.
    I love you are "locking the gates at sunset to keep out any passing trick or treaters" -- I usually walk at night for exercise and the night of Halloween is a nightmare for me. The streets are swarming with kids and parents and it's so hard to keep my pace trying to go around them!
    Love love love!!
    Masha

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  44. Such Victorian beauty, I adore this! How very gorgeous is that Rhodes skirt, what a find, and worn with true gothic glamour and panache with your great great grandmother's amazing jacket. Your great great grandfather was a heartbreaker and the sight of your hair cascading down your back over the shot silk has made my day sweetheart! Enjoy the keeping the haribo to yourselves!

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  45. my goodness you're stunning in all your gothy inspired glory! I'm so jealous of that wonderful top hat!

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  46. What a dapper lad your G Grandfather was. I actually did think it was Oscar Wilde for a bit.
    And the coat and hat - how wonderful that you can own and wear your families possessions!
    What a great find with that skirt! I'm due for a proper op-shop soon, though the best ill get out of my area is 60s stuff onwards, not that im complaining.

    We didn't have Halloween when i was a kid, but lately the little blighters have decided they want to pick up the American tradition of candy collecting and do it as well. they don't even bother getting dressed up sometimes! Just in their regular clothes with a plastic bag. maybe a mask if your lucky!

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  47. I love this outfit, you look like a sexy Victorian Ringmaster (mistress?!) x

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  48. Ha ... this grumpy Aussie and her grumpy family have also been wondering what's the best approach to Halloween. Go out somewhere ... anywhere ... to avoid the trick or treaters ... or stay in ... with the lights out ... pretending we went out somewhere! We don't want to share our lollie stash either!!
    By the way ... you look totally fabulous in that outfit ... what a find the skirt was. Everything always seems to fit you just perfectly ... you must be the perfect size and the perfect height :0)
    xx

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  49. You look way beyond gorgeous :)

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  50. What a dramatic and cool look on you. I love the stories behind all the pieces. We too are dim the lights and stay indoors types for Halloween, but that's because so few children live around us.

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  51. Oh Vix. Your beauty is bewitching. Zandra would be very proud of you.

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  52. You know I have goth tendencies so I love this post. Always wonderful to see your collection of weird ancestors! The brooch is fabulous and what an amazing find the skirt was, perfectly Victorian. Bet it was a bargain too. That top hat fits you perfectly... I do like a man in a frock coat and top hat xxxx

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  53. You know I have goth tendencies so I love this post. Always wonderful to see your collection of weird ancestors! The brooch is fabulous and what an amazing find the skirt was, perfectly Victorian. Bet it was a bargain too. That top hat fits you perfectly... I do like a man in a frock coat and top hat xxxx

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  54. Love the outfit. I'll be hiding with the lights off. I can't stand trick or treaters,

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  55. You have the BEST pieces. The fact that they are from your immediate family makes them even more special.

    That coat...that hat! I die!

    bisous
    Suzanne

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  56. An unworn 1970s Zandra piece?! Wow, what a find! Very jealous. Love all your family heirloom pieces too.

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  57. You look totally hot in that outfit! OMG you can wear anything with that bod! What's your secret? ;-) love the old vintage pieces.

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  58. Wow, Vix, you look ravishing. I love reading about your family and I think its so special that you have the watch and the brooch and the jacket. Treasure those items and the memories for me please?

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  59. I have only few words my ladyship: you are gorgeous!I love the skirt and your family treasures never fail to surprise me! I adore the wicked face of your great Grandfather, I'm sure he could have been a rockstar in our Century! I'm almost dead looking at your perfect mourning jacket and the beautiful top hat!
    All my love xxxxxx

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  60. zandra rhodes!
    cool!
    the skirt is really beautiful, the fabric, the color. love its fullness!
    the whole outfit is just gorgeous!
    i wish i had something old like the jacket from my ancestors. but wwII and the russian army cut a huge hole in our heritage.......
    (love that you spin your own story to my photos, curious how it would sound :-) )

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  61. I'm with Shelley: you don't look like you're wearing a costume at all. You look like you've morphed out of some Victorian novel. How amazing that most of these pieces have been passed down. Every thing is just fabulous. Happy Halloween! Xo

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  62. I am clearly the last person in the entire world to comment on this post, but never mind, I'm finally here to add my two penn'oth! You look utterly beautiful, Vix, and the Zandra Rhodes skirt is a wonderful find. It is always a treat to see you wearing your lovely family pieces, and hell yeah! A top hat is sexy!
    We are doing our usual routine of going out for a meal to avoid the trick or treaters. Now, where did I put my top hat....?
    See you soooooooon! xxxxxxx

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  63. I love the dress, the jacket, and that fabulous look of yours, yeahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh
    XXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

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  64. I was, like, a kitty cat for halloween. Meanwhile you are some kind of steampunk princess in ancestral finery!

    Who can compete with that? Answer: no one.

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  65. That skirt is just a beautiful piece of history......the whole wardrobe actually! I must say you have some sexy long hair with the mourning jacket.

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  66. Beautiful skirt! What a find!
    I love the top hat and coat as accessories too. You look lovely.

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  67. Very steam punk just need goggles lol

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  68. You would have fit right in the party we went to earlier this week. I always love a bit of historic pieces. The jacket is amazing! xx/Madison

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  69. There's nothing like real silk, and there's nothing like silk taffeta, and there's REALLY nothing like vintage silk taffeta with family connections ... but there's REALLY NOTHING as beautifully AMAZING as vintage silk taffeta with a family connection with VIX WEARING IT. Best ever.

    Lucky (and deserving) you to have such family jewels to show off as well!
    So you, so delicious.

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  70. Amazing outfit and that skirt's brilliant find! Rachel x

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  71. That watch looks adorable!!!

    Sal x

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  72. Your ancestors' pieces and the Zandra Rhodes skirt were made for each other!
    Your hair and make up look fantastic with the whole ensemble.

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  73. Gorgeous outfit, reminds me of steampunk :)

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  74. I love that you still wear your family history - with such style too. Just beautiful Vix!

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  75. Hide the candy - the kids are coming! I had to laugh at your description of Jon.
    You are such a wicked temptress. It's a pity that this outfit would not be practical for heavy physical labour. But thanks for sharing here. This is stunning.

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  76. Breathtaking! Seeing you in your top hat has convinced me that I need to find one to include in my collection. It's the perfect chapeau to top off the gorgeous mourning jacket and the Zandra Rhodes maxi skirt.

    Thank you so much for linking up with Hat Attack!

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  77. Oh Vix, this post was just what I needed. Historical characters, family history and beautiful outfits. Plus the chance to hear you on YouTube (via the link). I am originally from Shropshire, and the black country accent reminds me of home.
    Thanks for cheering me up massively xxX

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  78. Amazing brooch and watch, you always find the best things, love it. your eye for the beautiful is excellent! You look fabulous :)



    Plz check out my fashion blog at www.fashion1psychology.com Thx ;-)

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  79. Oh Vix, what a fantastic outfit! I love that you pulled in so many elements from your beloved family & the addition of a Zandra Rhodes, never worn no less what a prize! Hey I'm just like you, timepieces go crazy on me so I gave up many years ago & just wear them as jewelry. You witchy woman! XXX

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Love from Vix
xxx