Disney Bound? NerdBound!

Haunted Mansion Skirt

I don’t consider myself much of a “Disney bounder,” but I do love me some Disney theme park and I especially love 1. the Haunted Mansion attraction at both American Disney resorts and 2. Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom. I plan to attend my second “MNSSHP” this coming September, and will be wearing NerdBound’s Haunted Mansion Ghost-ess skirt when I go!

NerdBound is a unique Etsy shop run by my friend Gretchen Burneko, offering “bounding” basics for any fandom in virtually all sizes. While Disney-inspired gathered skirts are Gretchen’s bread-and-butter, she can custom make just about anything in any size. Her prices are more than reasonable and her pieces are well-made, comfortable, and look great! My favorite piece is this Ghost-ess skirt, inspired by the dark green costumes worn by female Haunted Mansion cast member, but I own and love her Tarzan’s Jane Porter-inspired skirt, as well. Continue reading “Disney Bound? NerdBound!”

Kittens and Pom-Poms And A Three Day Weekend Friday: A Guest Blog

Poet and teacher Nicole Henares is a huge fan of vintage and pinup fashion. She recently reviewed a Pinup Girl Clothing Mary Blair kitten print Heidi dress (size L) with flair! You can explore her other amazing work at http://www.aurelialorca.com/.

Nicole’s kitty Heidi

Love: A good fabric, a delightful print. I have found a name, a cartoon character – Miss Frizzle.  Except I do not have a magic school bus, or a pet iguana on my shoulder. I am a high school English teacher with three cats, The Empurress Velvet, and the boys, the bards of meow who purr in iambic pentameter – William Shakespurr and Mister Edgar Allan Paw. One of my students asked me today if the print on my dress was sushi?  The print is not sushi, it is Mary Blair’s kittens drinking from a bowl.  Honestly, I wish I had gone down a size in this dress, but with a belt and a camisole it works.  The belt it came with it didn’t have any grommets so I went instead with a wide buckled patton leather  belt and an old Betsey Johsnon capped sleeve cropped sweater with little pom-pom ties at the top.  Honestly, between the pom-poms and the kittens, good grief. However, on a Friday before a three day weekend I need pom poms and Mary Blair’s kittens. Shakespurr eyed the pom-poms when I got dressed.  “Forget about it,” I told him.  Though Velvet is the one who has been known to attack pom-poms:  many years ago I had a poncho with the most adorable pom-poms, until…..

Pom-poms!

Fashion & Style Influences: Mary Blair at Pinup Girl Clothing

Mary Blair train border print skirt.

I always tell people that my basic style descends from a combination of Bettie Page (e.g. the bangs), film costume designer Edith Head (e.g. bangs, Mexican and gypsy skirts), and artist Mary Blair. It’s an odd mix, but it begins to make sense if you know me fairly well and think on it for a few moments. You may be aware that my signature hair accessory is a black grosgrain ribbon, something I picked up years ago from photos of Blair. I’m also a huge fan of the colors and shapes she incorporated into her artwork and designs for everything from Disney films and theme park attractions (It’s a Small World!) to advertisements to fashion.

Mary Blair at work, with pony tail and bangs.

I wasn’t sure what to expect when Pinup Girl Clothing announced that they would be adapting some of Blair’s (non-Disney, of course) art to fabrics for a special “Magic of Mary Blair” collection, but I ended up ordering and enjoying several of the pieces. Most items from the collection are existing Pinup Girl Clothing staple pieces, like the popular gathered Jenny skirt and Ella dress, that feature commercial illustrations by Blair. Some of the art comes from textile prints (like the parasols) and others from things like advertisements (e.g. the kittens). They are all constructed from PUG’s favorite cotton sateen fabrics, which look and wear well in casual settings. Continue reading “Fashion & Style Influences: Mary Blair at Pinup Girl Clothing”

Summer Pinup: Lush Kittens “All Things Cute” Issue

I’m in Lush Kittens this month! Known for its fun themes and features, this pinup magazine is definitely worth a look! You can purchase the “All Things Cute” issue now, in digital or paper form.

Kali in Lush Kittens, by Miss Missy Photography.

Here’s a preview of my layout, featuring the makeup, hair, and photography talents of Miss Missy Photography. I’m wearing my vintage brown label Alfred Shaheen dress. The tiki mug on the side table next to me originally came from Stockton’s famous Islander restaurant, a San Joaquin County tiki bar staple from 1963 to 1982. It was a Christmas gift from my awesome brother!

Happy Valentine’s Day: Bernie Dexter’s Sweetheart dress in doily print

Bernie Dexter Sweetheart Dress

I’m a sucker for fussy floral stuff. I’m not exactly Chintz Nation, but you give me a black dress covered in doily-decked pink and yellow nosegays and I’m in the clouds. We’re talking Bespinian proportions here, probably because nosegays and doilies remind me of Alfred Hitchcock’s Vertigo. So when I first saw Bernie Dexter’s fabulous Sweetheart dress in the floral doily print, I just about died.

Continue reading “Happy Valentine’s Day: Bernie Dexter’s Sweetheart dress in doily print”

Modcloth Uniquely You Challenge: Evening of Extravagance

Modcloth has developed such a beautiful selection of vintage-inspired, straight- and plus-sized fashions in the last few years that they’ve become a one-stop-shop for anyone looking for a taste of top brands and accessories in the category. This week, they invited me to take part in their Polyvore “Uniquely You” Challenge, an opportunity to build an outfit around a piece selected by Modcloth. The dress I got was the “Evening of Extravagance” black lace dress, one of this week’s featured items on the site.

Uniquely You Challenge - Modcloth

Ankle wrap pumps
modcloth.com

Evening purse
modcloth.com

Sports ring
modcloth.com

Rosette necklace
modcloth.com

 

The delicate black lace overlay is very reminiscent of the 1950s – a look I love! Since it’s lunar new year and almost Valentine’s Day, I went with red and gold accessories, including a beautiful rose necklace and golden velvet bow clutch.

Guest Review: Jasmine on the 20th Century Foxy Taylor Swing Dress

This week, something new! A great review of a beautiful 20th Century Foxy brand dress by my friend Jasmine of Betty LeBonBon, purveyor of fine custom vintage-style skirts and much more! This dress reminds me so much of the beautiful green piece worn by Elizabeth Taylor in the 1959 film Suddenly Last Summer that I’m hoping to get one of my own. Thanks, Jasmine!

Jasmine looking gorgeous in the 20th Century Foxy Taylor Swing Dress.

Broadly speaking I’m a prints lady – I love my dresses with a quirky, unique print, or bold florals on unexpected base colours. You can let the print speak for your personality, and I find them quite easy to wear as the print will dictate how to accessorize and what colours to choose. Easy!

But I recently reached a point where my wardrobe was so print-saturated that I found myself longing for a few simple block colours – if only so I could try out a few patterned shoes or ornate brooches. As much as I love a beautiful print, it can be hard to work a pair of printed shoes with a printed dress, or to choose a really fussy, ornate brooch as inevitably the detail will be lost against a printed dress.

Liz Taylor original dress + 20th Century Foxy reproduction.

I spotted the 20th Century Foxy ‘Taylor’ dress at Miskonduct Clothing. At first, the dress doesn’t look like much – a simple green dress with a matching belt and a full skirt. Normally I wouldn’t even stop for a second look, but being a fair-skinned ginger I’d already decided I was looking for something green. And this dress was green. A good start! I was convinced it would go beautifully with simple accessories like gold or silver, perhaps even blue accents – and it would play beautifully with a nice floral printed shoe (think Iron Fist or Irregular Choice), should I finally decide to invest. Sold!

Continue reading “Guest Review: Jasmine on the 20th Century Foxy Taylor Swing Dress”

Review: Voodoo Vixen Roxy dress and Eleanor Cardigan

Voodoo Vixen Roxy dress and Eleanor cardigan.

Things are thawing out like crazy here in NorCal, which means Spring is on the horizon. When Voodoo Vixen UK offered to send me some samples of their beautiful clothing, I Immediately zeroed in on the perfectly pink Roxy swing dress and mint green Eleanor cardigan. Both are uber-girly without being too frilly and the colors are light and Springy without being too pastel.

When I requested Roxy, I expected a lightweight cotton fabric with a pretty pink print. I got a rich-looking brocade in a GORGEOUS light salmon-pink with cream accents. Seriously, this fabric looks it comes from a robe à la Francaise straight out of Marie Antoinette’s wardrobe. It’s that lovely. Roxy is fully lined and it’s short, but not indecently so, coming to just above my knee (I’m 5’8″ plus). The shawl collar and decorative oversized buttons down the bodice give the dress a nice 1950s effect and a little belt finishes off the look. The belt is made of the same lightweight fabric as the lining, though, which may not be sturdy enough for you. In the pictures, I wear the Roxy with both her own belt and my white Deadly Dames belt for contrast.

Continue reading “Review: Voodoo Vixen Roxy dress and Eleanor Cardigan”