Wednesday 30 November 2011

A happening in my palazzo

We usually have some sort of gathering over the festive period.

We made ourselves very unpopular with the neighbours last year by indulging in a raucous karaoke session. Oh dear, don't they know they are living next door to undiscovered musical stars?

And it wasn't the kids' fault; ours, plus the offspring of our friends, played happily and quietly on the Wii, while the adults got drunk and belted out a tune or two.

So I am thinking ahead. What can I wear? 

I think I have the answer. 

Groovy baby! It's a homemade 1960s palazzo pant jumpsuit, for want of a snappier title, in the most fabulous vibrant Pucci-esque psychedelic print.

I love love love it, so even though it's too small on the booboids, I am determined to winch myself into it.

I recently commented in a message to the divine Sarah Misfit that I though I love her spectacular jumpsuits, I couldn't possibly wear one. She, quite rightly, responded that I was talking crap - why ever not? So I have been on the look out for one to see who's right.

What's the verdict?

I am keeping stellar company with these beautiful jump/catsuit wearing hotties.




Aren't they gorgeous?

I don't know what it is about this item of clothing, but it seems to bring out the interpretive dancer in me.

Look at those fuck-off palazzo legs!
I am referring to the jumpsuit, not mine.

Don't ask me what I'm doing. I have no idea, I just came over a bit strange.
Channelling Martha Graham?

The ability to laugh at one's own foolishness is necessary for the maintenance of sanity, I find.

Monday 28 November 2011

Leopard Love

I was really busy with preparations for our school Christmas Fair last week, so I have been neglectful of blogging duties.

Plus I have had a cold, but being Woman Flu, it just got ignored and I carried on as normal.

I tried not to let the fact that I was scurrying around decorating Santa's Grotto, setting up and working on stalls, and then doing the big clear up afterwards, get in the way of style!

           I thought the day called for a bit of leopard print. Nothing says Christmas like animal print, right?

                              Here comes Minnie, she can't resist the lure of Leopard Love any more than I can.

Leopard print dress (£4.50, charity shop), scarf and black/gold bangle (Heavenly Hottie Helga), gold bangle (Lovely Lucy), sparkly tights (Vivacious Vix), Clarks ankle boots (£2, community fair)

                         That's Other Half as Santa, with another poor Dad happy volunteer as an Elf.
                         Please, no more Elf and Safety jokes.

Can you tell that Eldest LB had had enough by then? She had been really helpful all day, but was having a moment here, I know not why.

And can you believe that the kids insisted on paying the £2 to go and meet Santa in his Grotto? They paid (or rather I did) to see their own father. How mad is that? Oh well, all in a good cause...

The fair went well, I meant to take lots of photos because there were some lovely stalls, but needless to say, I was too busy and forgot.

I did manage to sneak in a little charity shop trip with friends last week. Apart from the leopard dress, I found this amazing 1960s Swedish cotton jersey trouser suit.

It's a bit mad but I couldn't leave it behind! It may be destined for Ebay, or the school run, I haven't decided yet. My friends can't believe I'll actually wear it, so that's reason enough to do so, isn't it?

This little selection of vintage stockings made me smile - we have a couple of 1970s dolly birds and then we have...

...this lady. Wolsey were obviously aiming at a different demographic. The transvestite market, perhaps?

And finally...

        ...Bargain of the Week, £2 from a stall on Chesterfield flea market, this fabulous 1960s maxi dress.

Off to catch up with you all now! xxxxxxx

Wednesday 23 November 2011

Gifts from the Goddess

I went to collect a parcel from the Post Office depot yesterday, and was delighted to spot Rock Goddess Helga's name on the back of my package.

I couldn't wait to get home and have a look inside.
I was not disappointed!

Bags and sunnies and beads and brooch and bangle and scarves and sequins and orange 1960s baby doll nighties.

But wait. There's more.

                    Just look at the fabulous print on this cape-sleeve 1970s maxi dress. I can't wait to wear it!

                                                               Such a pretty floral canvas bag.


           I can't show you the bag of delightfully named Pineapple Lumps, cos we've scoffed them all.

The girls seem to be under the impression that some of the gifts are for them. Would it be inappropriate if I call them the Pineapple Lumps? Great name for a girl band.

Eldest LB informed me that the nightie she's wearing must be for her, as it's too short for me and would show my bottom.
Don't know what the problem is with that...

So that is my parcel of heavenly delights from the Goddess herself. Thank you, darling delicious soon-to-be-famous Helga, you are too too kind.

Of course I did a bit of charity shopping while I was out and about.

I like this smart wool C&A coat, it fits really well, and it was in the half price sale, so cost all of £2.50.

 More coat hangers, 50p each. Charley liked biting the holly fabric-covered one. Obviously not a fan of Christmas.

And since my crazy drag queen false eyelashes are for extra special occasions only, I invested a whole 50p in these rather more subtle falsies.

And though these photos aren't from yesterday (the hair colour gives the game away), this was pretty much what I wore.

Wool poncho, hat, scarf, ditsy 70s-style dress, sparkly footless tights, hoop earrings, bangles - all charity shopped. Boots - Ebay.

And for no other reason to amuse you (and myself), I thought I'd share a couple of out-takes from Sunday's sweater girl photo session. Does anyone else try ridiculous poses just for fun? It can't just be me, can it? 

                                                 Hurry up with the bloody photos, I'm dying for a pee.

                                                              Soooo sexy. And soooo foolish. 

Has anyone got any good 'uns they are prepared to share?
Go on, I dare you!

Sunday 20 November 2011

Sweater girl

I don't possess any sweaters. I wear cardigans, ponchos and shawls, so I do knitwear, just not sweaters.

But then I found this sweater dress languishing in my mistaken Ebay purchase pile.

The seller had described it as brand new; one look at the worn label and somewhat straggly appearance of the knit made it clear that it wasn't. She didn't respond to my complaint, I got my £1.99 refunded by Ebay, and the dress has been in the attic ever since.

What do you think?
I know it's a sober grey, a colour I rarely choose, but having pepped it up a little with purple tights and my favourite shoe boots, I quite like it. Though anything woolly next to my skin doesn't half irritate me!

Ok, so without a bullet bra, the boobs aren't quite as pointy as Diana's...

 ... and I can't claim to look as sexy as Brigitte...

... but with the knee-high boots, I am reminded of Nancy Sinatra singing "These boots were made for walkin'".

Don't worry, I am not going to ask you if my bum looks big in this. I don't care! 
(And The Boy, who is peering over my shoulder, has just said "Your butt is fine, mum." Praise indeed from an 8 year old boy.

Feel free to sing along.

Friday 18 November 2011

Compliments of the season

Today I wore one of the dresses I bought last Saturday at the vintage and craft fair.

When I tried it on, a stall holder (not the seller, actually) said, "That dress could have been made for you." Which pretty much clinched the deal. It is a perfect fit.

Vix, that most astute of bloggers, has commented that my wrap cardigans function in much the same way as her waistcoats/jerkins; they pull an outfit together and make it more me/her.

I think she's spot on.

I do like the dress without the cardigan too.

I was walking home from school, after dropping the kids off this morning, when a bald, burly window cleaner stopped me by saying, "Excuse me love, can I just say that dress is wonderful?" To which of course I replied, "Yes, indeed you can. And thank you!"

So we had a little chat about old clothes and bright colours, and I went on my way grinning. A Sheffield window cleaner, in his 50s, who didn't appear to be the kind of bloke to think about clothes at all, appreciated a bit of vintage glamour. That made me smile!

1960s Courtaulds Dicel maxi dress (vinatge fair), blue wrap cardi (charity shop), assorted bracelets and earrings (charity shop), smug smile (random compliments from unlikely sources)

I went Christmas shopping to Debenhams today, as it's their sale plus an extra 10% off for card holders (I've had the card for years but rarely use it now, apart from for buying gifts.) Good grief, things are so expensive! I know I sound like a ridiculous old fart, but I am so attuned to charity shop prices that the "real" cost of things in "real" shops shocks me rigid. 

So here's my dilemma. 
I would love to buy vintage/secondhand gifts for friends and family, for all the reasons that I choose to shop that way for myself. But is that imposing my beliefs and tastes on them, and should gift giving be about what the recipient would like first and foremost, rather than what the giver wants to give?  

I'm trying to do a bit of both - a vintage scarf to accompany some perfume, maybe, in an attempt to break people in gently!

What do you do? Vintage/crafty/homemade gifts whether they like it or not? Or the high street, with resentment in your heart and a wailing in your wallet?


While I wait for your sage replies, I will swan about in my gorgeous frock, which at £12 cost far less the party dresses I saw today.
And it brings me a million times more pleasure.
Window Cleaning Man agrees!

Have a wonderful weekend, my dears. xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Tuesday 15 November 2011

In which I have listened and learned

Thank you for your suggestions for reducing the frump factor in my nautical outfit.

I knew you ladies of style and substance would have some words of wisdom for me!

I would love a red beret set at a jaunty angle - but I don't have one. Nor a red cardi or jacket.

But I've added a little brooch, tucked in the end of the belt, unearthed some red tights, and lightened the trotters with white T-bars.

And I have turned up the hem of the skirt by about an inch, only pinned as yet, might take it up a bit more yet.

I feel better. Can you tell?

It's not odd that I dressed up again in the same outfit, but with your suggested adaptatons, is it?
I knew you'd understand.

This is what I really wore today.

 1970s Lerose maxi dress (Ebay), InWear mohair wrap cardigan (flea market), Jones boots (Ebay), Jennie's necklace (again), beaded charm bracelet (birthday gift)

The dress was too big on the top (not a problem I often encounter) so I took it in, but very shoddily, hence it can only be worn with something over the top. I told you I was slapdash.

Look, I'm showing you my skirt, right, and if you don't like it, I'll have this face like a slapped arse for the rest of the day.

                                                            Twirly whirly. 

I love how you darlings are full of ideas and constructive styling advice. I trust your judgment, and I will doubtless be calling on your expertise again.

Who needs Trinny, Susannah, Gok or anyone else when you've got the blogging community to help?

You rock! xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx


Monday 14 November 2011

Is it just me?

I often mull over what I'm going to wear, putting outfits together in my head.

Not in an obsessive, anal kind of way, you understand. No no. I like to think of it as my hobby.

But sometimes the reality isn't quite up to the standard of my imagined version.
Reality can be so disappointing.

I bought this nautical skirt in The Shop on Brick Lane during my  jaunt to London last month, then picked up a little 1960s Orlon knit top in a charity shop for £1.99. I thought the two were made for each other, but now I'm not so sure.
It's a feeling I've had before...

See, I was thinking cute retro 50s nautical gorgeousness. But I think I just look frumpy dumpy lumpy. What can I do? Help me, oh Stylish Lady Readers!

On a more positive note, there was another Craft and Vintage Fair on Saturday so I took the female LBs along with me this time.

 As usual, there were lovely things and lovely friendly people, not to mention lovely food.

Two stall holders remembered me from last time, because they liked my frock - wearing vintage definitely gets you noticed, I'm getting to like it!

I bought a few Christmas presents, and a couple of things for myself... For me? Oh you shouldn't have. But go on then. Here's a sneaky peek.

So we had a good time, the girls "helped" Elodie on her stall while I browsed (thanks Elodie!), and they each chose something for their hair. Helga will be impressed that Eldest LB picked an F-O bow to match her shirt (Fuck Off Bows and Matchy Match - she's learning!) and Smallest LB selected a button flower clip (Krista and Loo, who know all about the Button Love, will approve.)

Posing on the grave stones - how very Goth of us, hahahaha!

Did I mention I bought a few things?
I wore a 1970s (I think) maxi with a fabulous almost-paisley print. And my ubiquitous denim jacket, and the necklace from Jennie's giveaway.

The fair was held at St. Mary's church. The vintage finery lurked under the organ pipes, beneath the watchful eye of Mary.

Is it my imagination, or is she flicking the Vs?
Perhaps it's a comment on those heathens who only set foot in church if there's shopping to be done there.
Which of course includes me.