Summer Vintage OotD: A deadstock suntop and Mexican skirt

I just received a vintage 1950s suntop in deadstock condition, so naturally I had to wear it out right away. I wore it to tea with my philodendron-motif vintage Mexican skirt, huge lucite bracelets, and Vivien of Holloway 3-inch stretch belt!

Deadstock suntop and vintage Mexican skirt

Deadstock suntop and vintage Mexican skirt.

The top is made of a slightly-stretchy black poplin, with a ruched back and buttons down the front. The seams are all pinked (zigzag cut edges) to keep them from fraying. This was how they finished seams in the days before prolific serging. Until about 1964, seam sergers weren’t common.

Very cute, but also cool on hot days like today. Yeah, leave it to us to pay to drink hot liquids on a 100F+ day!

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Guest Post: Trashy Diva Apple Pie Dress for Betty Le BonBon!

Trashy Diva Apple Pie Dress

Trashy Diva Apple Pie Dress

This week I’m a guest writer at Jasmine’s wonderful Betty Le BonBon blog, reviewing the Apple Pie dress from one of my favorite vintage reproduction brands, Trashy Diva!

Check out the review, and Jasmine’s great fashion and lifestyle blog, here!

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 in the 20th Century Foxy Taylor Swing Dress

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

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!

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Jane Austen illustrations from the British Library

Technology is awesome. This week, it’s particularly awesome because I learned that the British Library has used it to post a whole mess of nifty illustrations from beloved classic editions of Jane Austen’s novels to its Flikr stream.

Some of these Austen illustrations include Irish Illustrator Hugh Thomson’s famous line drawings for Macmillan’s 1896 edition of Emma, represented below by Mr. Knightley’s proposal.

Hugh Thomson Illustration from Emma

Hugh Thomson illustration for Jane Austen’s Emma: Mr. Knightley proposes.

For more from and about iconic illustrated Austen works, peruse the following:

 

Link: A(nother) 1950s-inspired dollmaker game!

Link

1950s Dollmaker

Me, 1950s-inspired dollmaker style!

Some friends of mine discovered this fun 1950s-inspired paper doll/dollmaker game at DollDivine! There are several fashion, accessory, makeup, and hair options to choose from, making the possible combinations nearly endless.

The pinup avatar I can up with actually resembles me, right down to the bangs, glasses, and platform sandals! I love the little Pomeranian dog friend, but I wish there were kitty options, too. :D

Fun Halloween fashions…and other sweet pinup nightmares

Planet Pinup spider bow with interchangeable charms

Planet Pinup spider bow with interchangeable charms.

While gothabilly aesthetics have been strongly represented in the realms of retro and pinup fashion for some time, it takes something truly special to represent the rarified holiday quality of Halloween for this recovering goth girl. Halloween requires something more than black, or bats, or zombies, or skeletons. Sometimes it’s hard to pinpoint exactly what makes something Halloween as opposed to garden variety macabre, and indeed, there is no special formula. For me, it’s a know-it-when-I-see-it kind of thing.

Here are some new, pinup-friendly Halloween-themed pieces that scream Halloween to me…

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More pinup by Angela Morales!

Kali by Angela

Kali by Angela.

Being back at work is a drag, but photo shoots aren’t. Earlier this year, I shot some fresh pinup pics in Los Angeles with photographer Angela Morales – one of my favorites! – and makeup and hair guru Angel Jagger.

This set’s got a sixties vibe going, with the jet-setting, uber-modern hotel surroundings and all. And even though I’m fully covered from armpit-to-thigh with a longline bra and high-waisted girdle, this is technically a lingerie shoot. Hah.

Anyway, it was fun and I think the pictures turned out great!

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Happy 58th, Disneyland! and the Barstow Family’s “Disneyland Dream”

The Barstow family in Disneyland, 1956

The Barstow family in Disneyland, 1956.

Disneyland’s 58 years old today! To celebrate, here’s the Barstow family’s 1956 D-Land adventure! One of the kids won the trip – a dream vacation to the then-one-year-old theme park – through a 3M cellophane tape contest.

The film – titled “Disneyland Dream” – is a great record of early Disneyland, but it also includes glimpses of old school Knott’s Berry farm and 1950s SoCal in general. These days, it’s hard to imagine northern O.C. covered by anything but pavement and buildings… Continue reading