Tuesday, 28 December 2021

Twixtmas

Forgive me friends, for I have sinned, it has been a week since I last blogged. After spending Winter Solstice at Chirk Castle the days have just flown by. Before getting stuck into hosting The Dead Relatives Society Xmas bash and the day of housework and prep it involved, we squeezed in some charity shopping.


Clockwise from top left: Psychedelic 1960s toiletry set; Gothic saloon girl cotton maxi dress by alternative label, Banned; Two Indigo Moon jackets with labels still attached; 1970s gents wool flares; 1970s gents sheepskin coat.


Clockwise from top left: St Michael wool maxi coat; 1970s Crimplene day dress; All Saints silk shirt dress; 1980s batik playsuit, made in Bali; 1980s midi dress; Another Indigo Moon jacket (someone must have had a huge clearout, we left another three behind); 1970s paisley print day dress.


Our Xmas Day get together was great fun. What were the chances of my cracker hat matching my dress perfectly? Talking of dresses, I wore my Dilli Grey birthday dress but didn't get time to pose in it for posterity, having to wear it again the following day so Jon could take a photo. I teamed it with some cranberry opaque tights bought new from eBay six years ago and my Clarks'/ V&A/ Liberty collab suede shoes. I did have luscious curls but after two bottles of rose wine and 12 hours of sleep, they were looking a little limp.


With the exception of the festive edition of The Great British Sewing Bee, we did as we always do and avoided Xmas TV like the plague. We watched the gentle British film, The Dig and the bloodbath that is Quentin Tarantino's The Hateful Eight which, in my opinion, is one of his finest - witty, stylish and utterly captivating. We continued with the superb cold war spy series, The Americans, leaving the 75th (and final) episode to watch tonight. Having only started watching it this year we found the previous series of The Great Pottery Throwdown on catch-up and we've been glued to that, too. 

I read John le Carré's final novel, An Agent Running in the Field, which was excellent, and I'm currently halfway through Philippa Gregory's The Virgin's Lover. She's an author I discovered during the lockdown and I find her writing enthralling.



I showed you my Morris Ware vase a few weeks ago. Jon bought me a book about the artist, George Cartlidge's work for Xmas.


The book is an absolute joy, I was drooling over Cartlidge's ceramics especially his tiled fireplaces. It was lovely to see my Thistle vase in there, too! 



Normally Lord Jon & I go for a National Trust adventure the day after Boxing Day but the weather has been abysmal so we've postponed our trip until later in the week when we've been promised a couple of unseasonably warm and, most importantly, dry days.


Last month we'd treated ourselves to a wool duvet (this one HERE) and it's been absolutely incredible, no more sweaty nights for me or chilly ones for Jon. We decided to invest in a couple of wool pillows which I ordered from Dunelm via Click & Collect and drove over to their Walsall out-of-town branch to pick them up. We were greeted at the door and after showing the sales assistant proof of purchase our pillows were handed over without us having to mingle with the sales shoppers. 


I wore my Dilli Grey dress again, this time with the 1960s Wetherall of Bond Street cape I bought in a charity shop almost two decades ago, my Reiss wool fedora (eBay) and my car-booted 1960s-does-Edwardian lace-up boots. The rain splatters were a gift from nature.


During Friday's cleaning frenzy I managed to pull the bathroom shelf off the wall so we popped down to Wilko for some filler. As it was another dreadful day we drove into Walsall and were delighted to see that the Clearance Charity shop was open. 

What did we find? 1970s coat by Sheepskin Products (Bath) designed by Paul H Keen; contemporary wool waistcoat; 1970s balloon sleeve ribbed top; 1970s Lurex cocktail blouse; 1970s deadstock cardi; Srishti block printed Indian cotton kurta; Lacoste hoodie; Jasper Conran boating blazer; Ben Sherman mod all-wool blazer; Dune black suede brogues with the store tags attached (for Jon).


Our current oven glove is a professional chef's, serviceable but boring, while the cushions on our kitchen chairs are knackered old things we've had for nigh-on twenty years so I think William Morris would thoroughly approve of the other items we found in the charity shop.


Two brand new Oxford cushion covers (complete with pads) in William Morris's iconic Strawberry Thief print in the crimson colourway by Le Chateau (HERE) for £2 each and a matching oven glove from the William Morris Gallery (HERE) for £1. That's almost £50 worth of beautifully made, top quality textiles for £5 - a bargain!


Talk about an exciting Xmas present, the owner of Dilli Grey, Vickie, messaged to ask if she could share a photo of me wearing my Dakota maxi skirt on their Instagram page. Of course, I said yes!


The skirt got another outing today. This time I wore it with a vintage Anokhi block printed jacket & Toast cowboy boots (both eBay), my Tricoville all-wool cape (car boot sale, 2011) and a vintage tooled leather snarling lion buckle belt and a 1970s felted wool hat (both charity shopped).


The last couple of days have been Bank Holidays but I've been getting up at my regular 6am for a Wii Fit Workout although I've done my usual weekend thing by taking mugs of tea back to bed as soon as I'm done and reading until 8.30am. The eBay shop has reopened and I've already got a bag of parcels ready for Lord Jon to drop off at the Post Office when it reopens tomorrow.

See you soon!

51 comments:

  1. What terrific finds. Today I'll be taking my leisure finding places for new items and starting purging of others. I made a decision to replace our cutlery so browsing options. Your purple garments are Perfect for winter. Royalty, despite Jon's title.

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    1. Thanks, Sam! I love having a clear out in order to accomodate my presents.
      Buying new cutlery sounds like a very worthwhile investment. xxx

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  2. Glad your Christmas Day was a success. I bet that book's added a few things to your must have list. I knew it was only a matter of time before international stardom came a'knockin'...brilliant that you had some recognition from Dilli Grey! Loving the purple toned outfits and the William Morris haul. Have you ever been to Broadway Tower? I think you'd love it. There's a small museum in the tower and a William Morris connection. xxx

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    1. I was in bed by 8pm - I couldn't cope with the excitement!
      George Cartlidge's creations are so expensive, they go for crazy money on eBay, I'd kill for one of those fireplaces or any of his pots.
      Dilli Grey really make you feel like a cherished customer. I can see why they've got so many fans.
      I've just googled Broadway Tower, it looks incredible! xxx

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  3. Some great chazza finds there Vix. TYM has taken out a month's subscription to Netflix, so whilst he was out with his mates for a meal on Xmas Eve Mr GBT and I watched "The Dig" too. Thoroughly enjoyed it especially as we've been back to Sutton Hoo this year. Arilx

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    1. That's answered my question, I thought one of my friends had mentioned Sutton Hoo recently, it was you! It was a lovely, gentle film, wasn't it? xxx

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  4. Who are the people in the Christmas group photo, Vix? It sounds like you had a wonderful time over this Christmas holiday and I'm so glad. I absolutely adore Christmas so it always makes my heart sing when others do too. Best of 2022 coming up. ~Andrea XOXO

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    1. Much love to you, Andrea! Jon & I are with Tony & Ian, the lads have been friends since childhood and grew up in the same area of Walsall. Christine is another friend! It was lovely to spend time with them, we usually meet up in the Indian restaurant a short walk from home but it closed during the lockdown and never reopened. xxx

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  5. Lovely to see your Christmas Day celebrations with lovely folk. I’m clapping my hands at your William Morris finds, we’ve got the tea towels, coasters and two lampshades in the same pattern and colour.
    We’ve also got covid so that’s not so good.
    Take care you two xxx

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    1. Get well soon, you two. I hope you feel okay and you're back to normal soon.
      We have got great taste, havcen't we? I bought that oven mitt for full price a few years ago and managed to burn it, I shall take more care this time. xxx

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  6. I avoid most of the trappings of Christmas as well, but I did have a nice dinner with friends and watched a new Netflix film called "Don't Look Up" which was rather odd, but entertaining. Your "new" William Morris accessories are lovely! The Morris Ware vase is an exquisite piece of art - so cool it is in the book! You did very well at the chazzas. I went thrifting just before Christmas but there's very little real vintage to be found here.

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    1. Dinner with friends and a good film, that's my ideal holiday thing to do, too! Don't Look Up looks really funny, it's had a fair bit of publicity here, too. I might have to see if we can get hold of it.
      Its feast or famine with vintage in the chazzas, when we do find it I assume it's come from the same person and I have to runback round like a crazy person to make sure I've not missed any. xxx

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  7. Those two Indigo Moon jackets are absolutely gorgeous. Great finds.
    I watched The Hateful Eight in cinema when it came out with my husband. I agree it is a good film, I remember both of us agreeing on that and on Tarantino being true to his style. I don't like the excessive gore and violence, but I respect Tarantino's devotion to his own cinematic style. I never regretted seeing any of his films.
    Those cushion covers are wonderful.
    It's nice you had lovely holiday time with your friends and lord Jon. That purple dress is gorgeous. Your Dakota maxi skirt is fabulous too! Wonderful outfits and style.
    All the best in the new year!

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    1. Such a shame those jackets are plus size (although probably good news for my wardrobe!!)
      I do love Quentin Tarantino's films, despite the violence there's a hefty dose of humour in his scripts.
      Sending you lots of love for 2022! xxx

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  8. What a lovely photo of good friends Vix. That's how we'll be spending New Year this year. Good friends and plenty of food/booze/laughter.

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    1. That sounds like the perfect NYE, Cherie! xxx

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  9. Looks like you had a fabulous time with friends. Your cushions and oven glove are very nice and I love everything 'the chateau' how fun that Dilli Grey used your Instagram pic, it's a great pic and a great example of how you can mix and blend colours, textures and old with new :)

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    1. We had a lovely day, thanks Betty!
      I was amazed to find those two cushions and the oven glove in the charity shop. I wonder if they were an unwanted Xmas present? There's no accounting for taste if they were!
      I love how my Dilli Grey pieces fit with all my vintage clothes, a wise investment! xxx

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  10. Le Chateau made me smile.

    Here in Canada, Le Chateau was a clothing store with the weirdest mix of things. One side was menswear, some quite nice suits and shirts, etc. The other side was for females. It was so discordant. You were never sure of what market they were aiming for. Business dress for the working woman? Sleazy night at the disco? Bridesmaid dress? Accessories were good as were the shoes. The sizing was a bit iffy as well. You either were rail thin and almost anorexic to fit some things and then the larger sizes were extremely large.

    Happy New Year. I love thistles and would sell my wisdom teeth for that vase.

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    1. How funny that our La Chateau is posh homewares and yours was such a bizarre clothing shop. I'd loved to have visited it, it sounds most intruiging!
      That vase is gorgeous, isn't it? I regularly stalk eBay for Cartlidge pieces but I think I'd have to sell a body part to afford one.
      Happy New Year to you, too. xxx

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  11. Goodness, those patterned capes are amazing!
    You look so nice in your Dilli Grey dress and cape combo.
    What great William Morris pieces! I'm v jealous! I get so excited when I see a Morris print but it's always a synthetic H&M piece in the wrong size. The only other piece I found was an English made quilted cotton jacket in blue Strawberry thief- wasn't quite my size so I bought it for my blog friend Ang as she loves Morris too and gave it to her when we met and she was thrilled!!
    I SAW you on the Dilligrey Insta and was very excited!! You look So good in it!!
    I love cheesy Christmas movies but haven't been able to match any/many as my other 3 house companions are not so keen! You're in good company!

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    1. I haven't worn my capes for ages, I'm not sure why!
      That was so lovely to pass the Strawberry Thief jacket on to Ang. I was really pleased with the cushions and the oven mitt, I can't understand why anyone would donate such lovely, unused things to a charity shop but I'm delighted that they did.
      I was thrilled when Dilli Grey asked if they could share my photo. Their customer service is absolutely brilliant, you really do get what you pay for.
      I'm so fussy when it comes to films, Jon would watch absolutely anything given the chance! xxx

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  12. Happy Xmas, Vix and Jon! Looks like you had a lovely time, getting in a bit of shopping and celebrating with your pals. I love your Morris quote and what a gorgeous book that is.

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  13. Glorious Morris Ware info and beautiful Thistle vase, Vix - we have a roller blind to match your strawberry thief swag (it was too wide for our window - the excess trim has become a matching table runner) - not as bargain-tastic - but half the price that John Lewis was charging originally - good old eBay! We also let lucky in TKMaxx and got a Morris & Co Bullerswood print duvet cover after much stalking - it is beautiful.

    I've just finished Jane and May Morris: A Biographical Story, 1839-1938 by Jan Marsh - by gum - quite a read on many counts. I'm about to start the catalogue (it's a hardback book) for the RA John Constable Late works exhibition https://www.royalacademy.org.uk/exhibition/late-constable (Christmas pressie)- I'm really on the look-out for a book of Constable's trees - because no-one does trees quite like him https://www.christianapayne.com/blog/john-constables-love-of-trees and I am obsessed with them!

    How lovely to feature on Dilli Grey's Instagram, Vix - you should be a regular feature there! Loving the purple Indigo Moon - will have to look out for it on Kinky listings.

    Take care all - 2021 can get in the bin with 2020 on NYE - roll on Spring xxxx



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    1. Hello Elaine! I love the Bullerswood print, I bet that duvet cover is gorgeous. I can't understand why anyone would have bought those cushions and oven mitt and give them away without using them but I'm very glad they did!
      The Morris book must have been a bit of an eye-opener, they led an interesting life by all accounts. I shal;l keep my eyes peeled for the Constable tree book.He's an artist I've never really taken much notice of but watching the Constable Fake or Fortune (still on the i Player) made me appreciate his skills.
      I can understand why people are loyal to brands when its a company as genuinely lovely as Dilli Grey, I'm forever stalking their stuff on ebay but - quite sensibly - it doesn't pop up that often! I couldn't believe all those Indigo Moon jackets, some of the nicest I've seen, god bless the declutterers!
      Sending you and yours lots of love for a far better 2022! xxx

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    2. Thanks Vix - the Morris family are absolutely fascinating - it is a shame that William Morris is always seen as the be all and end all - his daughters, his sister in law (Jane's sister) and Jane herself were all just as creative and interesting. The book certainy made me so grateful not to have lived in Victorian times - it was a shitty time to be a woman.

      Constable and Turner should have kissed and made up - both of them turned out some staggering late works - it would have been amazing to see how far they could have pushed it.

      I looked at the purple Indigo Moon jacket and it's too big. Poo!

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    3. You're not wrong there, us women really are fortunate to have been born when we were and (mostly) regarded as intelligent human beings in our own right.
      Walsall' New Art Gallery hosted a Turner exhibition in 2017, it was spectacular!
      I suspected that jacket would be too big - I'm in love with the black applique one! xxx

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  14. You are forgiven now go and say 10 Hail Mary’s lol. Looking fab as always!! me and bean got realised from hospital yesterday!! we are both fine. The hospital was lovely. Xmas dinner for a veggie was ugh!! but I got Xmas pudding.
    X2 as I am eating for 2 lol. Looking fab as always.
    I am self isolating with my parents. The kids keep trying to bust in lol. We are going to have Xmas on new year as I will be in the clear by then. I am pulling clear flow tests now . But we are holding back.
    I am hopefully going charity shopping before I fly home. I really want that retro beauty set it’s a corker. I am a bit of a softie for ceramics. I love Charles rennie mackintosh I have one peice by him and it is well loved.
    Mum went sale shopping and bought me lots of plant goodies and beauty goodies from Superdrug as I love I heart revolution. The elder two have bought me a suprise back home as well. Love and huggs keep safe allie

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    1. Thank goodness for that, I felt ever so naughty turning my PC off for three days!
      I'm glad you're back at your parents now. I remember whan I was in hospital the nurses suggested I ordered the Asian vegetarian menu instead of the normal vegetarian one, spices instead of boiled to death veg!
      I hope you get to go charity shopping before you go home, they're getting good with people being bored and having massive clearouts. I wonder how long that beauty set had been stashed away unused in someone's house - 50 odd years, I expect!
      hat Revolution stuff is fab, I bought one of their eyeshadow palettes in 2018 and it's brilliant, never budges or fades.
      Loads of love. xxx

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  15. ou look fab in the Dilli Grey dress and if that is you after 2 bottles of wine and 12 hours sleep well wow is all I can say! There have been late nights and lots of eating and drinking this end and I can assure you I could not look that glam! Wow you packed alot in and as usual all done with such flair. Great finds at the chazzas and well done for already being back into the Wii fit!! Exercise hasn't started yet here ha ha lovely post as usual and will say thanks for another year of inviting us into the exciting Vix world! Shazxx

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    1. Thatnk you so much, Shaz! I was horrified when I emptied the recycling bin and discovered two empty bottles of rose - I could have sworn I'd just had the one but everyone else was on red or beer so guilty as charged!
      I'm glad you had a lovely time. Like me, you're not one for doing nothing and doesn't it feel good to do just that? xxx

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  16. congrats to being featured on dilli gray´s insta page!
    you have the perfect compagnons in your wardrobe for that fab skirt.....
    the party looks and sounds like great fun and i love your party look - the dress is another awesome beauty and your hair still looked pretty the next day. gorgeous too with the cape - its very pleasing when new and old clothes work together perfectly - talking well curated wardrobe :-D
    xxxxx

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    1. Thanks, Beate! Talk about feeling like a valued customer!
      That skirt was such a brilliant investment as was the dress, pieces I'll love and treasure for years and make me feel great no matter how often I wear them. I love it when things slot along effortlessly with clothes I already own. xxx

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  17. What fabuloud finds in the charity shops Vix.
    Our CHristmas has been a little muted as everyone living in my house apart from me now has Covid!
    I am wondering if it is my vegetarian diet and daily yoga that is helping or maybe it my antisocial ability to find a quiet room and avoid everyone else!!!
    Happy New Year Vix.
    And wasn't The Dig fabulous?
    XX

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    1. Oh no! I'm so sorry that your family have all been struck down by the dreaded lurgy. I hope they're all better in time for New Year and don't feel too rough.
      I rarely catch anything either (touch wood!), I always say it's my vegetarian diet, too!
      The Dig was wonderful, imagine unearthing that treasure!
      Happy New Year, Jayne! xxx

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  18. Of course we forgive you Vix! (two bottles of rose would wipe me out for a whole month :0 :0 :0 ) I too watched the Sewing Bee. Also enjoyed the Christmas edition of Gone Fishing with Bob Mortimer & Paul Whitehouse. What a lovely Morrisware book from Jon. Always exciting to see a piece you own in a book, with its detailed history. Well done to Dilli Grey for acquiring a new fab model. Glad you had a super Christmas day. Lulu xXx

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    1. Thanks for reminding me about Bob & Paul, Lulu! I'd completely forgotten about their festive fishing show and watched it last night. xxx

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  19. Oh goodness didn't you do well! I particularly liked the William Morris cushions and oven gloves; fabulous!

    We watched the Sewing Bee too - there's hope for me yet. It was the only thing worth watching...

    Loved your outfits and the purple cape is gorgeous and goes so well with the Dilli Grey dress - they looked made for each other.

    Have a great New Year!
    xxx

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    1. Another Sewing Bee tonight - hooray! It does make you want to fire up the sewing machine, doesn't it? It's been far too long since I made anything.
      Happy New Year, Vronni! xxx

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  20. Judging from the happy faces, the Dead Relatives Society Xmas bash was a success, so all that housework must have been worth it!
    I'm loving your Dilli Grey birthday dress in both its incarnations, although it's looking particularly fetching with that magnificent cape.
    I'm not surprised Dilli Grey asked you if they could use that photo. I loved that outfit and all the others you've created with the skirt, including your latest, with the Anokhi block printed jacket and Tricoville cape.
    Great chazza finds as always. I'm rather envious of the WM Strawberry Thief cushions and oven glove. And speaking of WM, how amazing is that book!
    Fingers crossed for warmer - and dry! - weather. I'm getting cabin fever ... xxx

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    1. We had a lovely time, the hours just flew. I was in bed by 8, far too much excitement for one day.
      I'm so pleased with my dress & skirt that I've donated more of the contents of my wardrobe to the stockroom as I keep wearing my Dilli Greys again and again.
      How exciting to find those William Morris homewares in the chazza, people do donate some wonderfful things!
      I've just got up to a dry day - will it last? xxx

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  21. I believe there are many people who feel like I did when I read this article! Keep up the good work.

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  22. I try hard not to be affected by the weather, but it really has been grim. It's not just the rain, it's the neverending grey skies :(

    As always, you look fab, but I am particularly loving the Tricoville cape. It looks so warm, but of course really stylish too. What a great find.

    Yes, we must meet up again soon. Let's see what announcements are made in the New Year, and hopefully we will be able to look at dates xxx

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    1. It's been absymal, hasn't it? We've had the lights on all the time! What a constrast today though, I've spent a couple of hours in the garden and the sun's streaming in through the windoes blinding me. Jacob's even come out of hibernation and is stomping around the lounge like a thing posessed!
      Happy New Year, Annie! Can't wait to catch up! xxx

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  23. I learnt something interesting at our family chrimbly meal - my mom met and tore Vladimir Tretchikoff's shirt cuffs (he of the Chinese Girl painting fame) as part of a 'party game'....
    They were on a cruise ship returning to the UK from the colonies and it was a 'treasure hunt' where items had to be found of which she needed to have a gentleman's cuff or cuff-links or something and he offered his and she in her haste (she was about 10) grabbed and ran, tearing his cuff off his shirt!!
    As soon as I heard this tale - I knew I had to tell you!

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    1. No way! That's a fantastic claim to fame. From what I've read of Trechikoff, he was a kind man with a great sense of fun. I bet he dined out on the story of the little girl who tore off his cuffs for many a year! xxx

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  24. That's exciting-you modeling Vix-perhaps they will contact you in the future-you do look like a professional model-"Lady Vix"x

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    1. I might have to adopt Lady Vix as my new name, much better than "Miss" !
      Happy New Year, Flis! xxx

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Lots of love, Vix