Monday, 30 April 2012

My First Ever Blogger Award!

Imagine my immense surprise and pleasure when the gorgeous Louise sent me a versatile blogger award! Ok, it's not a Cosmo blogger award but hey, you gotta start somewhere right?! Basically, the versatile blogger award is for, well, versatile blogging and I now have to pass it on to some other bloggers and tell you 7 facts about myself.
My favourite bloggers at the mo (apart from Louise at  Princess Prudence Diaries!) are definitely the fabulous Maxine at Lil Vintage Me. A dedicated 1940s enthusiast with sewing skills to boot!

Shona at In the Heyday- not only a fabulous repro vintage business owner but also a lovely lady whose love of Vintage is inspiring and encouraging. Her outfit posts are also pretty fab!

Charlotte at Tuppence Ha'penny is also a versatile vintage blogger as she is enthused by many decades. I asked her recently if I could use one of her post photos and she was really sweet. (What can I say? Manners matter!)

There are lots of blogs I follow but those are my current favourites.

Right, 7 facts about me.... Hmmmm.... where to start?!

1. I have been married almost 18 years and my husband is my soul mate.

2. My favourite biscuits are party rings (yum!)

3. I have recently learnt how to use a sewing machine (thanks to my daughters!)

4. I believe in myself and think all women should be empowered to know that they are beautiful inside and out.

5. My best friend looks like Jessie J and rocks my world!

6. I absolutely love being self-employed and having the opportunity to mentor other women in business.

7. My little brother lives in Sydney, Australia and I miss him!

So there you have it; a few things you may or may not have known about me! Thanks Lou for the award! "I'd like to thank my parents for their ongoing love and support; my wonderful husband and three amazing daughters...................."


Friday, 27 April 2012

Fab Frock Friday! You give me Fever.....

Just look at thuis gorgeous Fever Frock I found in a cute boutique in neighbouring Leamington. Isn't it gorgeous?! It's turquoise with a delicious retro Tiki print of pink flamingoes. I love the slightly ruched V neck (always good on the bigger bust) and the fact that this dress is midi length so hangs in a slightly pleated A-line to just below the knees.
Fever Madagascar Dress £65
It's a wee bit steep at £65 and they didn't have my size so I have been good and not purchased but it reminded me how great Fever frocks are. And would you believe it I happen to have no less that 3 in Redressing's Summer collection! Pop over to the website and chack them out....

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Vintage 1950s Agatha Christie Style! A visit to Greenway.

While on our hols in glorious Devon we visited 'Greenway', the summer holiday home of Agatha Christie and her family from 1930. The house was then given to the National Trust on the death of her daughter and was opened in 2009.
View from the gardens of the river Dart

The property is built on a steep hillside and the gardens have been tiered with amazing flora & fauna (I've always wanted to write that!!), including lots of varieties of Magnolia tree, Camellia, Rhododendron and even a few Eucalyptus. My 10 year old was our family photographer and did an amazing job of it!

NT Welcome sign!

The house itself was bought in the 30s by Agatha and her second husband Max Mallowan. The National Trust have set it up more or less as it would have been in the 1950s with lots of family photos, souvenirs from the couples many travels and family paraphernalia. Agatha's bedroom has an amazing chest of drawers originally from Damascus! (complete with woodworm apparently until it was removed after Agatha could hear scratchings coming from it at night!!)
Greenway House

We took a family picnic (although it does boast not one but 2 tea shops!), and enjoyed an unusually warm afternoon moseying around the grounds. I wore my Heyday 1940s swing trousers as they are so my go-to outfit for dodgy weather this Spring! (Think I need a suitably vintage alternative to the Ikea bag though?!)
Picnic time

The Girls!
As a family we do love the National Trust; how amazing to have so much of our history made available to us and future generations to enjoy; and how wonderful of these great houses original owners to bequeath their own heritage for the benefit of others- I can see so many principles of generational transfer in that; passing on ideals, standards and values to future generations and the recognition that however beautiful, amazing and enormous houses are, at the end of the day they're just 'stuff'! People should never be remembered for where they lived or even what they did, but rather who they were and what motivated them.
What would you be remembered for?!

Here's a few more photos......
The house from the upper terraces

Views across the river
And even a retro 1950s style Agatha Christie tour bus to take you from the nearby village!

If you get the chance to join the NT or visit one of their historic house, parks or gardens, just think again... what will you be remembered for?!

Friday, 20 April 2012

Why the British always talk about the weather!

We were driving last week and in one hour drove through every weather condition there is. No wonder us Brits like to talk about the weather!!! At least we were in the car.
Here are some stunning cloud pictures we caught though as the sunshine played such a wondeful game of hide and seek.

The sun peeking through

Blue Skies

Light Rain again!
It's a global cliche that us Brits always talk about the weather- but you only have to live here for 5 minutes to see why.

Happy wet/dry/cold/warm Friday folks!

(And a happy 3rd Birthday to my Aussie Nephew who I'm hoping is soaking up some rays today. A big Mwah Charlie!!)

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Outfit Post: Collectif dress.

I just love the halterneck dress collection from Collectif! Actually, I now have 3 of their stunning dresses. This one I wore to a friends 30th birthday recently and the other two I'm saving for summer along with my new Vivien of Holloway purchase.
Birdcage Sindy Doll Dress by Collectif

Cute birdcage print
 I wore this one with my Miss L Fire black Dollie shoes but sadly I have lost one of the delightful shoe flowers... I think I may be able to replace them with hair flowers or even clip on earrings?!
Miss L Fire Dollie Shoes
 My intention is to get around to styling my hair in 50s waves to complete the look but for now here you go.
I love a good halter neck!
 I do hope you're rocking a dress this Wednesday!

Monday, 16 April 2012

Cath Kidston for the smallest room in the house!

We've been wondering quite what to do with our downstairs loo- the smallest room in the house. 
 The position of the door means it's often left ajar and one wall can be seen so what better way to style in up than to give it some vintage glamour in the shape of Cath Kidston Wallpaper!

We have quite a bit of Cath Kidston in our home and the florals in the antique rose bouquet paper really echo my love of vintage and the 1930s style of the house.
Hallway. The colours in the wallpaper really match the original stained glass in the 1930s front door.

Lounge. Just the chimney breast in here above the original 1930s marbled oak fireplace.
What do you think?!
The Loo!

(Even the hand soap matches)

See what I meant about the door being left ajar?!

My eldest has got to be one of Cath Kidston's biggest fans! A few years back she created a vintage style Union Jack made from Cath Kidston oilcloth. What can I say? A love of vintage is definitely being passed on down!!
Vintage style Union Jack in CK oilcloth & fabric. (Artist/seamstress aged 11)

What does your loo say about you?!

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

BeBopaLouLou Vintage Launch!

There's nothing I love more than being involved in a fledgling business that is really going places!
If you love authentic vintage, you're going to love

The brain child of Louise & Peter, this new venture is unlike the majority of vintage on line websites for many reasons. Firstly, I have modelled some of their classy vintage pieces so can vouch for the beautiful condition and cut of their hand picked selections. Secondly, the site itself has been built, developed and maintained by Louise & Peter themselves and as the owner if an on line business I really do applaud that level of commitment while holding down a day job! Thirdly, unlike many 'bandwagon' vintage retailers, these guys really do know their stuff; adore all things vintage and beautiful and are into the vintage scene in a huge way themselves, so any questions or queries you have about their stock, or if there's something specific you'd like them to find, you can have faith in their knowledge and personal commitment to all things vintage!

Shop by decade or by style; men's and ladies, there really is something for everyone on the newly launched website.
 Pop on over and find something unique and beautiful!

Friday, 6 April 2012

Vintage Vacations

Easter hols- yay! Where are you off to? Anywhere nice? We're tripping down to East Devon for a wonderful relax; a spot of antique and charity shop browsing and some beach BBQs- well, a calor gas ring on the beach! (remember the pancakes on Tenby beach last Easter?!) I'm really quite excited about being away en famille; it's been a while since it was just the 5 of us.
It's so important to build in time to spend with family; whether it's immediate family or extended family and where better to be than a pretty coastal part of the good ole British Isles?!

 I love Devon; there's so much to do and see and as we live in Coventry (about as landlocked as you can get!) It will be just wonderful to see the sea!
Judging by these vintage vacation posters, postcards and old 1950s photographs, previous generations have also loved visiting Devon! I hope the beaches of Seaton, Beer and Sidmouth are this gorgeous still!
Whatever you are doing- hope it's a great week full of vintage glamour and style!

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Dresses to Impress- the A-Z of fab frocks and gorgeous gowns.... T is for Tea Dresses!

Have you noticed once the sun comes out ladies go for a dress?! Hooray! Tea dresses are todays topic of choice and what better dress to carry you through a seasonal transition like Winter into Spring and Spring into Summer?
Tara Starlet £85
So named beacuse of its aptness for being worn to afternoon tea, (minimum cleavage, maximum impact!) the tea dress comes in a variety of styles. Often tea dresses are patterned fabric in bright colours and are soft and feminine. The tea dresses of the 1940s would have been made from cotton or chiffon and the skirt would either be A-line or slightly full (fabric rations allowing). A demure V neck, often with ruching under the bust or delicate buttons and the padded shoulder detail is iconic of forties tea dresses. The dresses were designed to accentuate the waist so would often have a belt and  usually fell to just below the knee. Some had a collar, others front buttons. £65
 The beauty of the tea dress is that's it is so very easy to wear. Comfortable yet slightly structured, a good tea dress will leave you feeling soft and feminine as you demurely eat your scone or hold your vintage china tea cup. There are lots of tea dresses around this Spring as they tend to suit almost everyone.
New Look
Edina Ronay
Vivien of Holloway
Something for every size, shape and budget!
Happy Tea Dress Wednesday