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

Bernie Dexter Sweetheart Dress
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.

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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

Evening purse

Sports ring

Rosette necklace


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.

Review: Voodoo Vixen Roxy dress and Eleanor Cardigan

Voodoo Vixen Roxy dress
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.

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Review: Steady Clothing dresses

Steady Velvet Diva dress
Steady Velvet Diva dress.

I’ve wanted to try Steady’s retro-inspired, made-in-the-USA “Vintage Classics” designs for a while now, so I jumped at the chance when a rep for this Southern California institution contacted me about taking some samples for a spin. I chose the Vicky dress in charcoal, the Sparrow Lush dress in red, and the Velvet Diva dress in black, all in 1x for my 42-32-48″ frame.

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Outfit of the Day: Vintage Kamehameha halter dress

Vintage Kamehameha halter dress
Vintage Kamehameha halter dress.

You guys know by now that I love me some mid century aloha wear. Hot on the heels of last week’s new-old vintage Alfred Shaheen is this beautiful 1950s circle-style halter dress by Kamehameha, one of the famous mid century Hawaiian fashion labels.

This one has a nifty bullet-structure bustline (which looks great over my vintage shape Goddess longline bra) and a full skirt (which looks great over my Malco Modes petticoats). The cotton fabric has bright, firelike orange-red anthuria and birds of paradise printed all over it. I got it from Christina of Skirt Chaser Vintage, who is a great sourced of designer vintage for people on the low end of the plus range. I’m at about 42-32-48″, and this is a perfect fit.

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New Year, New Year’s Eve Fashion: Trashy Diva’s Lena Dress

Trashy Diva Lena Dress
Trashy Diva Lena Dress.

I didn’t end up doing anything for New Year’s Eve, but I had plans. Even a nice dinner out deserves a special dress, and this time around I chose Trashy Diva’s new Lena dress. She’s a gorgeous 1950s halter dress with a circle skirt and very festive Swarovski-style crystals and glass beading on the bodice and halter straps. The dress was intended for the holiday season, but it’s actually rather seasonless and the color flatters many skin tones!

The bodice is beautifully pleated with a nice “shelf” detail that pulls up into the halter straps. For those who hate the neck-pulling that happens with many halters, this one’s worth trying. The bodice is very structured and form-fitting, which takes some of the pressure off the neck. The halter buttons at the back of the neck, too, which alleviates the pull that often occurs with halter ties.

I got the size 14, which fits a bit closer than the stated measurements on the Lena size chart. At 43-32-48″, the bodice fits perfectly without a bra.

Trashy Diva Lena Dress
Trashy Diva Lena Dress.

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Black Friday holiday dresses: Madeline, Grace, Honey, Erin, and Jenny

Madeline Dress
Laura Byrnes Madeline dress with matching bolero.

Now that I’m back from the barfs, it’s time to share some of my Black Friday purchases from Pinup Girl Clothing and Trashy Diva!

My favorite of the lot is the Laura Byrnes Madeline dress in plaid taffeta, a dress I desperately wanted last fall but never got around to ordering. Since the piece didn’t drop until after the holidays, I didn’t have an immediate reason to buy it when it first came out. Another big reason for the delay is the cost. MSRP for this number is $200, and that’s not factoring in the additional $76 for the matching bolero (which is kind of necessary to complete the look). Throw in the fact that several of the gals who first purchased the dress back in January mentioned the odd fit provided by the elasticized side panels on the bodice and I was skeptical.

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Winter holiday dresses: Collectif Faye Floral Doll and Deadly Dames Folly Flair

Collectif Faye Doll
Collectif Faye Floral Doll dress.

I promised pretty vintage inspired holiday party dresses, and now you’ll get them!

I recently purchased the beautiful Faye Floral Doll dress from Collectif on a nice sale. It’s a gorgeous black, full-skirted 1950s style with a built-in petticoat. The entire dress has an overlay made of a beautiful sheer mesh fabric, including the illusion-style sweetheart bodice. There are hand-cut, hand-applied lace flowers scattered on the skirt overlay. The same appliques line the bodice’s sweetheart edge.

With Collectif employee Julia’s kind assistance, I selected the size 14 (I’m 42-32/33-48″) and have no regrets!

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