Thursday, 20 August 2015

It Began In Afrika


I was planning to post about the dress I'm currently making but I came back with so much stuff from this morning's car boot sale that by the time I'd sorted all out, loaded the washing machine & tidied up I'd lost the will to hem it. I'll never be a professional blogger, will I?

Waxed cotton earrings (Cornbury Festival), Braided cuff (gift from friends, bought in Cuba)

I must have had a bit of an African vibe going on when I got dressed this morning, what with my Rwandan earrings, 


and Ghanaian basket. 

Photobomb!
So it was no surprise that this dress called to me from a rail (or it might have been the stall holder, declaring her undying love for the Dollyrockers maxi I was wearing).


From a distance I thought it was African waxed cotton but the lady told me it was Kente from her mother's native Ghana, originally worn by Kingdom of Ashanti royalty (but widespread today). Each of the colours have a symbolic meaning so, according to the internet, my dress denotes high status & spiritual purity (gold), maturity (black), purity (white) and femininity (pink).

Not bad for a quid!

WEARING: Kente dress & head wrap (£1, car boot sale), Bertie cork soled platforms (charity shop), Ghanian basket (Kaya Festival), temple beads (Gokarna, 2015), all other jewellery (India)

The dress came with a head wrap, which I'm wearing as a sash, as I've got an annoying frozen shoulder from too much sewing and can't lift my arm high enough to tie it. I'm sure a therapeutic rum will sort me out later.


As for the rest of our finds, I don't know where to start. There's everything from professional disco lights, Aztec platform boots, sackfuls of vintage dresses & fabric, some prescription spectacles Morrissey would kill for and three pairs of the most outrageously pimp-tastic shoes known to man. Got to love a boot sale!

I'll leave you with the inspiration behind my post title, just in case you think I've forgotten how to use the spell check, you can't beat a bit of full-on trance on a Thursday afternoon.

51 comments:

  1. That frill is amazing - what a bargainous dress! Love the photobombing pussycat too :D

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  2. You look very pretty in those colors! Sorry about the sore arm, that sucks. Enjoy your medicine! :)

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  3. I'm a bit obsessed with African prints and fashion at the moment, so I absolutely love this dress. Sounds like you bagged some fabulous booty xx

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  4. Oooh you with your dicky shoulder and me with my dicky back what a pair of crocks. Isn't the fabric of that dress wonderful.
    Are you like me and influenced by something you currently like, meaning your new basket ?
    I suddenly noticed I'd started wearing lots of earthy colours and realised it was because I had an orangey coloured nail polish on.
    Sending healing thoughts to you and Philip said he will give you a good rub down with fine ash, it's bound to do the trick. Must be a welders treatment haha xx

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  5. Awesome love. You look divine in that dress. A quid! Fab.
    Love the colours and isn't it great that they all denote something. Africa has some of the best textiles. When I was a student I wanted to travel the continent and research all the textiles, the prints and embroideries. Now that would be a trip.
    Hope your shoulder gets better soon-there's not much a medicinal rum can't sort out, mind.
    Loves ya.
    xxxxxx

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  6. Love the outfit! Everything was tied in so beautifully.

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  7. Oh gosh, I LOVE Kente cloth. To get technical and dweeby, actual Kente cloth is woven in narrow strips (about 4") then sewn into large rectangles which are then wrapped around the body.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kente_cloth

    Let's say the print is Kente INSPIRED and I bet IT IS wax cloth.
    Gorgeous dress!

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  8. oohhh loving the dress and the history gorgeous pattern and colours looks gorgeous on you. Sorry you have hurt your shoulder hope it clears up soon for you. Oohhhh cant wait to see your buys from bootsale today sounds like you did really well. Rest that shoulder if you can, dee xxx

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  9. What a fantastic frock, the print and colours are truly wonderful, and that off the shoulder frill has a glorious 1970s vibe to it! And all for a quid? Yes please! As you say, the thrill of the boot sale/jumble/market/chazza wins every time over sterile high street shopping. You sound as though you found some amazing stuff, as ever. There are some African textiles lurking in the back from of my shop, I will have to take a closer look and find out more about them.
    Bugger about the shoulder - Simon's had a frozen shoulder for ages and ended up having it manipulated under a general anaesthetic to recover some of the range of movement. Hopefully yours will heal a little quicker without the need for anything like that.
    That basket is such a great find, and I have little pangs of envy about those wedges every time I see them...
    Have a good weekend, love, careful with the shoulder though (get Jon to do the heavy stuff!)
    Love you! xxxx

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  10. Oooh, I can't wait until you rip into those new-found pimp-tastic shoes. Sounds like a haul for the books. Your royal Ashanti dress is absolutely stunning. I love how the fabric has so much symbolism. And now I'm off to eat my oatmeal with strains of The Chemical Brothers going on and on in my brain. Haha. Maybe I should use rum instead of milk. I hope your shoulder loosens up soon.

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  11. You are so coordinated in a cultural sense:) I love how you have all of these African bits to throw together. x

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  12. Beautiful hand-made creation with a authentic African vibe(loved the way you've styled it, lovely on you, Vix!

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  13. Great music, I am now a Chemical Bros fan! I like the dress and sash, it's really spot on with the shoes and bag, I haven't been to a car boot sale for about 5 years - there is one in town every weekend when I'm working - off this time so I am going to go and take a look and see what I've been missing! Thanks for visiting my blog - I took heed of your comment recently that it's hard to get back into if you go and missed the connection with other people pretty quickly. I think you should get a little wildlife flower guide from a charity shop, that's how I know what I am looking at as I wouldn't have the foggiest otherwise!

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  14. I have a real soft spot for these dresses and love to see beautiful African women rocking them with a headdress. My friend at work wore one for her wedding which took place in Nigeria. You look fabulous in yours, that fabric is so beautiful and the headdress as sash works brilliantly. Got those sandals on again, lovely they are. I haven't been to a car boot for months, you've made me think I need a fix. Oh, frozen shoulder. I had one five years ago and although I have a lot more movement, it has never properly resolved (hence getting stuck in dressing rooms, unable to get tight clothes off). If you are in a lot of pain and get offered a steroid injection, I recommend it, but it needs to be into the shoulder capsule rather than the arm. Also my acupuncturist said she can treat it, so that might be worth a shot? Anyway, hope you get some relief soon, it's a pain, literally. Xxxxx

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  15. Don't you just love the colours of Africa, and I love the head wear around your waist. Hope your frozen shoulder thaws out!! They can be a bugger of a thing to have so take care, mind you I am sure the rum will help.

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  16. I utterly love those bracelets.

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  17. Hope your shoulder feels well-lubed soon. I believe strongly in Tequila therapy, closely related to Rum therapy.

    What a gorgeous dress, it does look fit for royalty. xox

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  18. Too much sewing? Is there such a thing?!
    Seriously, sorry to hear of your pain.
    Your basket is sending me happy vibes, along with your seriously gorgeous joolz!
    I see Anne's comment about Kente cloth. Maybe this is the modern version.
    Love your off the shoulder waistband styling. Tres chic! Xo Jazzy Jack

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  19. Gotta love a boot sale indeed! I can't believe that amazing dress was £1.
    Hope your shoulder eases. I think Jon should give you a massage if he's finished sorting out his mobile disco.
    xxx

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  20. Seeing African women in the local shopping centre always makes me smile - the colours of the clothes the were are simply wonderful - and the colours look fab on you. I hope your shoulder mends very soon. Wundaweb can do just as well for hems … I'm up in Antrim for a few days and going through charity shop withdrawals - need to get out hunting tomorrow :)

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  21. Seeing African women in the local shopping centre always makes me smile - the colours of the clothes the were are simply wonderful - and the colours look fab on you. I hope your shoulder mends very soon. Wundaweb can do just as well for hems … I'm up in Antrim for a few days and going through charity shop withdrawals - need to get out hunting tomorrow :)

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  22. I would really enjoy seeing a post with pictures of all the car boot items.
    Cool outfit, as always.

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  23. I hope that shoulder feels better soon, you look amazing in that beautiful dress and the meaning behind it makes it even more special,,

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  24. Those Chemical Brothers are rolling around in my brain. The video included a pop up ad for a walk-in bathtub which I thought was quite appropriate. Frozen shoulder? What the heck? That is quite crummy and probably does need some rummy. How perfect that you would select a dress with the colors for high status and spiritual purity.

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  25. You always look pretty in those off the shoulder type dresses they really suit you whatever the design or where they come from , A great story though xxx

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  26. What a beautiful dress - and the story behind the colours is fascinating.

    I hope your shoulder recovers soon, it must be awful not being able to move much.

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  27. I've been planning to write about Ashante textiles for a while. But then always been distracted to write about something else. Now after seeing you in this wonderful dress I feel motivated yet again :)

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  28. Oh wow! The dress, the bag, the sandals and the jewellery, all awesome! I love the streak in your hair too.

    I do enjoy a boot sale! My next one's on Sunday.

    Have a wonderful weekend! xx

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  29. You look absolutely fabulous....That colourful maxi looks fantastic on you.

    p.s. Yesterday you appeared in my dreams and you had a wonderful white maxi on. Interesting, right? It was a bit like this one, but it was a V cut and not off sleeves.

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  30. You look gorgeous in that dress. I love the off-the-shoulder style on you, and the meaning behind the fabric and colours is so interesting. Great find. I am also very taken by those fantastic earrings! The whole look is quite excellent.

    And speaking of quite excellent ... How about your garden?! Wow, I have plant envy now, for sure.

    The Chemical Bros have always been a favourite and their concert goes down as one of the most fun shows I've ever been to. If I could relive it, I would!

    Have a great weekend, my friend. I'll toast you with my rum drink and make-believe we're having a drink together!

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  31. Oh Vix I had a frozen shoulder about 5 or 6 years ago and it was so painful, not to mention restrictive. I truly hope your's isn't that severe. Your GP needs to refer you for urgent physio - in the meantime I'm certain rum therapy will help!! x

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  32. I love african fabrics. You embrace the african look in a personal and beautiful way. I guess my fabrics end up like turbans ...

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  33. I've grown to be a fan of African textiles - the prints and colours are so joyful! Love the off-the-shoulder ruffle on this one - what an amazing find for a quid. Can't wait to see some of the other items you found (including the pimp-tastic shoes).

    Hope your shoulder "thaws" soon without medical intervention.

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  34. How interesting to learn about Kente textiles. I see lots of African ladies in marvellous headgear at work, they are most striking against the usual background of drab. Love the way you've styled it and the jewellery is superb. Xx

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  35. Howdie Vix!!
    Gorgeous as always - and I drool over that bag. Hope that your shoulder feels better soon.

    Have you checked out any of the Chemical Brothers/Beth Orton stuff? (I love her)

    Xox

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  36. The dress and the basket are a match made in "Afrika"! Exotic on anyone but you.

    The frozen shoulder situation may be corrected by approximately 6 sessions with a deep-tissue massage therapist, preferable an elderly German lady trained at Baden Baden who intones "yah, und now this vil hurt" then pokes her fingers into your bones and hurts you. But she vil cure you, if you heed her advice to "drink vasser, much vasser, und pee out the badness, yah?" I speak from experience!

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  37. Love this dress!!
    Hope the rum sorted out that shoulder :0)
    xx

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  38. What a brilliant dress and how wonderful to learn it's story too! I love your ensemble in general the perfect antidote to all this rubbish weather. I hope your shoulder frees up soon, rum I'm sure did the trick! XX

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  39. Dress and basket = made for each other. A sewing injury?! Lower the sewing machine or sit on a higher chair. When you're sitting at the machine, your shoulders should be lowered and feel relaxed, not up to your ears and tensed. Ask me how I know? I've put my machine on a typing or computer keyboard desk which is lower. And I've also used a swivel chair that can be adjusted higher. Either or both work and the difference is immediately evident. Otherwise drink plenty of rum.

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  40. wunderschönes dress! :-)
    i love this kind of design with the ruffle around bare shoulders!! and i love the african vibe of your outfit!
    best wishes for your shoulder and can´t wait to see your newest sewing!
    xxxxxx

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  41. What a fantastic dress and such a bargain too! Sorry to hear about your shoulder, I hope the rum did the trick x

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  42. This is a fantastic outfit, Vix! One of my most favorite of yours. The dress looks amazing on you, love the color, the print, the meaning behind the colors, the style - and with the addition of your blue accessories and a basket it is a show stopper. I hope your shoulder is healed by now! Take care of yourself my dear! xxxx

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  43. I love everything abut this wonderful dress. African prints are so fun. I love them for their bright colours.

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  44. This print is wonderful and so is the off-the-shoulder. The shoulder injury is not. Hope the rum fixed you up.

    The whole look is fabulous.

    I hope you are going to share in photos what you picked up at the sale. It is always so interesting.

    bisous
    Suzanne

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  45. Love the ethnic fabric and great idea to wear to the head wrap as a sash belt.

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  46. Welcome to the bunch of African print lovers. It was Rebecca who has been in love with it for year and she started me of, and now I cannot get enough now.
    you look wonderful, dear Vix
    XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

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  47. Unbelievable, how many things can tell the color of a dress African! I think this dress is beautiful and perfect accessories with your choice! I see you bought the basket Ghanaian, I'm happy! I really like, I have a small basket with lid. And the cat ?! It is too funny!

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  48. There you are looking gorgeous and radiant, or should I say, full of status, maturity, purity and something else I've forgotten? Nah, let's stick with gorgeous and radiant. I love the stories behind that things you find and with all your bangles and baubles you are such a walking piece of art. A boot sale where I live would yield some Tupperware, plastic toys and sports equipment.
    PS I know it's not nearly as vivid in colour, nor vintage, but I think of you when I wear my blue maxi dress. I was channeling some Vix attitude in my photo too.
    LOVE those sandals you are wearing. Lust! Desire! Envy!
    xoxo

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  49. Can't wait to see all the goods you brought back from the car boot sale. My father used to bring back loads of stuff from Ghana. The dress is beautiful on you! x

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  50. I'm glad I'm not the only one who loses the will to do that "last little thing" on sewing projects at the last moment. Also bugger being a "real" blogger - I much prefer reading blogs by real people. I seem to be constantly seeing African wax cotton lately and I feel like I really need some of my own, your frock is absolutely beautiful. I've always had a soft spot for this kind of off the shoulder frock with frills! I love the frill!!

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Love from Vix
xxx