Monday, May 30, 2011

Fair Go!

Vintage sellers must have the constitutions of a team of oxen.
I'm certain of this after meeting Kitty of Kitty's Vintage Kitsch, at the Gold Coast Vintage Fashion Fair on Saturday.
I mean really, there's so much work that goes into such an event.
Choosing your stock, pricing, packing the car, not sleeping the night before, up early, organising family life, unpacking, setting up ...
Then waiting for punters to arrive ...
Hmmm.  Well, the fair venue was changed at the last minute to a site next to major roadworks, people got lost and well, it was a quiet one.
Great for buyers, crap for sellers.

But, I got to meet Kitty with the beautiful shop on Mount Tambourine that sells amazing furniture, homewares and incredible vintage clothing.

It was easy to spot her by the amazing red top-knot and 1970s frock.
Isn't she just heavenly?

The first thing she showed me was this beautiful vintage pearl necklace cunningly wrapped around her top-knot.

And she wore these amazing, huge bangles! Ga!!

Some of the clothing from a Titanic-themed display.  
Look at those fine details!

One seller told me she'd been wearing this spectacular, late-19th century, Venetian, velvet cape for the past 20 years, but decided it was time it had a new owner.
Unfortunately, I didn't have the dosh to sweep off with it myself.

Kitty put so much effort into making her stall look beautiful.
So many little delicate knick-knacks, vintage rings, hats and 1960s-70s frocks galore!
I heard the strains of San Francisco and thought "This is Vix and Helga heaven".

A couple more stalls here ... who's up for the 1960s orange bikini?

I can't explain this one, but it was our favourite pic nevertheless:).
Don't we look naughty?
My hair is a mess as I knew I'd be trying on hats and oh yes, I have a new hat.
Thank you so much for inviting me Kitty, I had a ball ... purchase pics to come:))
From the look of lots of you bloggers out there, the weekend was a goody!
Desiree xo

Friday, May 27, 2011

Barely There

Moments before stepping out of the shed he called home, my motorcycle racing grandfather would do a pseudo sign of the cross: "Spectacles, testicles, watch, wallet" he'd repeat.
Today I experienced moments of amusing panic today when I felt like I needed to remind myself to "check tits" and that my top was still on.
This 1940s navy silk blouse is so sheer it felt light enough to blow away.
I mean, it felt like ... air!

Once again, these pics were taken when I came home this afternoon which is why the skirt of my 1940s suit is looking a tad rumpled.
I feel like I should be tapping out a film noir script on my ancient Remington in some seedy studio office facing a dingy brick wall.

"Sure Mr Gable, I can get Miss Colbert to hitch up her skirt!"

I came home yesterday to surprise parcels from that divine pair, Sarah Misfits and Vintage Vixen.  Heaven.
Among the lovely goodies were this pair of Topshop tights and Barry M green nail polish from Vix and pin-up girl brooch from Sarah.
Squeeeee!!  These girls know what makes me tick.

I wore the blouse with a 1950s longline corset-style bra.  Keeps those girls in control;).

 Look, sparkly dots!  I like them with these wedges printed with 1950s beauty ads.

And ... 1970s sunnies, 1960s earrings and silk flower clip. 
You can see the satin, braiding and pin tuck details on the blouse here.

Are we all having a wonderful Friday?
Desiree xo

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Going Carny

Spending a fortnight in the imaginary embrace of life as a carny has it's drawbacks.
I guess.
For me, it means spending extra time stroking my 1930s knickers and nighties and finding new ways to wear them.
For the locals, I guess it means possibly falling over and getting a concussion.

I made a mad dash home before dark to snap off these pics.
Tonight is State of Origin night (interstate rugby league comp) and footy fans everywhere are flying flags, wearing team colours and generally getting ready for a huge night on the piss.
I wondered about the odd looks I was getting today, but realised that if people feel good in ugly league shirts, PJs, dressing gowns and strange hats while carrying slabs of beer around, I have the right to look like a carny;)).

I'm wearing a 1930s silk PJ top, 1920s tail coat - both from eBay; Saba bag; thrifted silk scarf and leather shorts; Midas leather and glitter shoes - flea market and some tricky Black Milk leg wear.
The style is based on their Wet Look Leggings, but with feet!  So they're warm, slinky and shiny all-in-one piece!

I dub thee: Cooch Dancer Shoes.

Laura Palmer brooch from The Bookhouse Girrrrl's Etsy shop.

When Carnivale aired late at night from 2003, I was knee-deep in two sets of babies' nappies and boobies leaking breast milk.
Sadly there was just no time for the grit of life in the 1930s Dust Bowl and Great Depression.
Until now.

My recent discovery of Carnivale had The Phoenix and I in its apocalyptic grip for endless nights.
Then I saw a poster for  Water for Elephants, the film set in the same era, and remembered someone had given me the book a few years ago.
So I dived in and devoured it too.

I've just emerged for air and think I've turned carny.

1930s silk knickers - eBay; black kimono worn inside out - eBay, I added the gold silk patches to the torn lining; 1980s silk sequinned top - thrifted; 1950s leopard-print hat - gift from Nelly.

My parents were born in the mid-1920s and grew up in New Zealand and Australia during the Great Depression, so it's an era I experienced second-hand.
They were sad and desperate times.
My dad left school and started working as a farm labourer at age 13.  
The same year, he bought his first pair of shoes.
My mother still doesn't throw ANYTHING away and I grew up in the 1970s and 1980s steeped in frugality and the WWII "make do and mend" ethos.
I must have seemed a strange child.

The circus and the carnival arriving in America's rural towns must have seemed a few hours of sweetness for the poor folks doing it tough.
Far from the harsh life in the Dust Bowl, my parents' generation also experienced desperate battles for their daily needs but I always suspected they sugar-coated daily life in the 1930s and 1940s.
What I love about the modern interpretations of those times, is the subversive content of what life was really like.
There was friendship, kinship and loyalty.  
On the other hand, there was rape, alcoholism, prostitution, poverty, starvation, cruelty and murder.
Bit like today huh?

When was the last time you were sartorially inspired by a book, movie or television program?
Desiree xo

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

He's Leaving On a Jet Plane

Today Number One Son left the emotional safety of his home town.
He's swapped the sub-tropical sunshine of Brisbane for cosmopolitan Melbourne, a job promotion and a new chapter in his adult life.
At 22, he's the same age I was when I brought him here from London, a chubby 11-month-old baby in 1990.
It was just the two of us for a long time.  Good times.
My how he's grown.

He spent his last night with us, wolfing down everything, playing with his siblings and as usual, introducing me to some new music.
These pics were taken minutes before stepping into the car for the trip to the airport this afternoon.
As you can see, my biggest boy, despite the prospect of an exciting life in the bright lights of a big, new city, was feeling some trepidation about moving.
The realisation that he was leaving his hometown had just hit him.
Obviously I had to wear something that would make us both smile.
I dragged my favourite kilt out (a bit rumpled) and decided it needed to meet my leopard-print silk shirt, my new pink tights and my favourite new find from Sunday's flea market, leather glitter shoes!!!!

I love these 1970s sunnies thrifted for $2 last week.  This was taken on the return trip home.  I look a bit grim don't I?

 My 50 cent earrings made him smile.

This is the view from the front room taken just before we drove off.

Good luck son!
Love Mum xo

Monday, May 23, 2011

Dammit Darlene!

You can get away with anything in a floral frock.
Makes a girl look like a nice, sweet thing from a country town who works part-time in the local library.
But if that frock should be from the early 1960s and cut tight around the knees with a bit of a cape, well, there's gonna be hell to pay.
Say hi to Darlene, an oh-so-innocent cotton summer frock.

Darlene loves turning up empty-handed at picnics, goes to the best Tupperware parties in town and never buys a thing, always forgets her lunch money and doesn't mind at all if some one nice from the library wants to spot her lunch.  Or a tenner for that matter.

Darlene is also a wee bit of a fibber.  Just little ones mind you.  She's just the type to force a gal to take the last cookie out of the jar, leave just before it's her round to make an urgent nail appointment, only to give her admirers a goodbye wiggle out the door.

Of course all is forgiven, thanks to Darlene's charms.

From all angles, Darlene has a lot to offer a girl.

This lovely little frock was a gift from the kind and generous Cry of Thru My Mind's Eye.
I've called her Darlene and there's no going back after the reactions from the public at large when I wore her two days in a row.
I kid you not, I saw a fella sitting outside a cafe drinking coffee and he missed his mouth.  
Oh dear.
I blame Darlene.

Who me?

Thank you so much Cry for this wonderful gift. 
Darlene will always have a loving home:).
Desiree xo

Sunday, May 22, 2011

You Got Me Hummin'

The Stylist took about two days to get ready for her first school disco.
It involved many fashion parades much to the entertainment and delight of the The Phoenix and I.
And a bit of squirming on my part: "Gawd am I such a prancing show-off that I've spawned another?"
Well, if making an effort is showing off, then dammit I'm a proud show-off!  
And I'm glad I did, especially after seeing all the outstanding outfits the seven and eight-year-old little girls wore to sparkle and shine on Friday night.
Their sartorial statements included: princess tutu dresses, hair and body glitter, matching outfits, sequins and more sequins, tulle skirts, flashing lights in their hair, plus I saw one little girl in what looked like the actual red glittery shoes Dorothy wore in the Wizard of Oz and another girl wore her mum's sequinned mules (they were too big and I melted at her bravado).
I was not going to let The Stylist down and wore my new pink tights - which had many kids doing a double-take;).

I wore a 1960s green tweed and fur suit from eBay and a black sheer blouse that the lovely Nelly gave me on her visit the previous day.

I'm also wearing the bracelet Nelly gave me and the Etsy jewellery I wore here.

I forgot to set my camera for outdoor night shots, but here's The Stylist tearing up the dance floor without a rest.
Ahhhhh ... that's my girl!

We stopped off at the shops on the way home and she bought me a silk rose to thank me for taking her ... or maybe for dancing with her and her friends.
You get a better look at the tights here.  They are from Sock Dreams, recommended by Meg Needles.  Thanks Meg, I don't think I can ever wear black tights again!  The shoes are Vivienne Westwood Melissa 3-Straps.  The face and hair is by: exhaustion!

And the bag?  I actually won it in a competition and it arrived from Saba this week.
Entrants had to pick an item from their online store, right a couple of lines about it and then forget about it guess!
Can't believe I won the item I chose, this gorgeous leather bag called Monique, which retails for $249.  I know people pay that sort of money for bags but I never have ... makes it extra special for me.
My entry was this letter ...

My darling Monique, you need not stay in night after night so lonely on a dusty shelf any longer.  
Bright lights, clinking glasses, gossip and tittering laughter can all be yours.  
You want to see the night, feel a fresh breeze rustle over you and feel your new owner clutch you nervously at the sight of her lover.  
You will see it all.  
You will be loved.

Thanks Saba!
I hope you're all having a fabbo weekend.
I plan on spending the evening with The Phoenix watching something British with lots of lovely murders:))
Desiree xo
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