Friday, 16 December 2011

Winter Woolies in Summer?

It's time for another Fashionable Friday and although the weather here is heating up, I have something  new I wanted to share.

Regular readers may remember this post from back in July, I had just bought some wool to be knitted into a vintage jumper. As I mentioned in the original post, it was being made by a knitting whizz I know and yesterday they were finally ready for collection. Exciting!

Pattern from Vintage Knits
Yes, you read correctly, I had two new jumpers to collect! The story goes something like this: The Knitting Whizz (KW) was so eager to start that she had knitted the front and back before realising she had made an error in the pattern.

To be honest, you wouldn't really notice the mistake unless it was pointed out, but KW wasn't happy. There was no way she was going to pull it all out and start again, so she just knitted another one. It's made from exactly the same colours, just in a different combination...

Isn't it amazing how different they look! I really can't choose a favourite, I like them both but I think I'll need to make something to wear with the 'purple storm'. I'm also thinking storm will be perfect for winter, while the 'red ghost' is more for spring. What say you?

By now you will likely have noticed my new 'do too. How can you not?! It is intensely bright and quite a bit shorter. It's been ages since I've been this short and I have to say I really like it, even if it does require more effort. As for the colour, I usually prefer a more natural looking red - at the moment I feel a bit Raggedy Ann - but it should have mellowed out by next week.

Oh sunglasses! Where for art thou?
Have a great weekend everyone and to my Australian readers:
Don't forget to Slip, Slop, Slap!


Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Cooked to Perfection

What sort of gift do you get the person who is hard to buy for? A gift certificate? It might seem like a good idea but it relies on the recipient actually going to the extent of redeeming it. Sometimes that seems too much like hard work.

Last Christmas, Mdblm & I were given a voucher to 'Dine & Bathe' at the Peninsula Hot Springs; lovely idea but the Mornington Peninsula is roughly a 2+ hour drive from where we live. It was always going to be an effort to get there and of course we left it to the last minute, just scraping in with a booking this Saturday evening just gone.

On arrival we ordered dinner and were then presented with fluffy white robes, crisp towels and a nifty little electronic wristband which locked your locker. What a clever idea! Our first hour was spent broiling ourselves in the small selection of mineral rich pools on offer in the Spa Dreaming Centre and we were both suitably cooked by dinner time. Dinner was by far the low point of the evening, but we were able to use the public bathing area after so we escaped over the fence as soon as possible.

There were a lot more pools to explore in the public area which made it very busy and while it was a lot more fun, there was a whole lotta people soup goin' on. Eewww! Speaking of people soup...

My best pinup pose
We stayed 'til closing time and drifted off to sleep to the sound of rain on the tin roof of our lovely little studio apartment on the beach. Oh so relaxing. Sunday breakfast was bacon & eggs with a view of the foreshore and we took the scenic route home, via the Mornington Racecourse Market.

All in all a lovely weekend by the seaside,
and I do love to be beside the seaside!


Saturday, 10 December 2011

Sold! Sold! Sold!

Yesterday's trip to the auction was so much fun!

There were several things I could have bought, just because they were cheap, but I managed to restrain myself. My purchases were well researched due to my attending the viewing, however there were a couple of impulse buys too.

First up is the reason why I had to back to the auction:
a mid-1940s Bridal Coat with hood.

Isn't it gorgeous?
I'm thinking of dying it a deep claret red and attaching a fur trim. Divine!

The price of this adorable vintage travel clothesline just kept going down and down and for $10 it was too darned cute to leave behind.

A pair of traditional Spanish flamenco hats and embroidered belt were also an impulse buy but too good a bargain at $20 for the lot.

You saw this Lanvin dress yesterday but now it's mine!
I think I'm going to shorten it to just below knee length so it will be more wearable.
Also, check out how sexy the back is!

When I saw this liquid satin bias cut wedding dress (with slip) from the 1930s at the viewing, I had hoped to buy it. It was listed at $80 to $120 which made it a out of my price range but there was no interest so I offered $50. Surprisingly, it was accepted. It's a shame it's too big - hence the ridiculous pose - but it really is beautiful.

I tried to resist but when I heard the words 'fur hat' and $10 I just couldn't help myself.

Plus, it came with a faux-cord handbag, a little tacky but the clasp is in great condition.

All in all a good day's shopping!
Happy Friday everyone!

Thursday, 8 December 2011

Going Once... Going Twice...

Being confined to the house has made me a little stir crazy and although I'm still not feeling 100%, today was the day I had to get out.

A friend had alerted me to an auction which is being held tomorrow and suggested it might be something I'd be interested in. Turns out it's an auction of vintage clothing and accessories, of course I'm interested! The viewing was held today at Leonard Joel, an auction house in South Yarra and a drive to the city in the sunshine would be just the thing to blow the cobwebs away.

This being my first visit to a formal auction house I really wasn't sure what to expect. To begin with I wandered through a few of the downstairs rooms to get a feel for the place - it was far from welcoming and the staff pretty much ignored me. But, things improved when I ventured upstairs and I found what I had been looking for - the clothes! The staff upstairs were genuinely helpful and they were more than happy for me to take photos.

Here are few of the pretty things up for auction tomorrow...

Vintage Beaded Handbags, to be sold as a pair, estimate $40 - $60

1970s Maxi dresses by Lanvin, estimate $80 - $120 each
Embroidery detail on navy maxi dress

Edwardian French Jet Caplet, estimate $160 - $200
Vintage hats, estimate $40 - $60 each
Japanese silk Obi, kimono length, estimate $60 - $100

Bodice detail of 1960s shantung & velvet 3 piece ensemble,
estimate $140 - $160
I must admit one or two pieces did manage to catch my eye so I'm planning on going back tomorrow. While they offer absentee & telephone bidding, I figure where's the fun in that?! I'd rather be there for the auction action. Here's hoping I don't get carried away...


Monday, 5 December 2011

Down for the count

This time last week I was arriving home from an awesome night of swing dancing, only to have it followed up by two days of feeling like I'd been hit by a truck, and culminating in a trip to the hospital emergency dept on Wednesday morning.
You see, I am an asthmatic and when I get a cold it can quickly turn into a chest infection. Ordinarily I'm a bit of a bloke about illness - she'll be right, I'll go to the doctor when I'm really sick - but it takes forever to get an appointment to see a doctor and I really didn't think I couldn't wait a few days. Breathing is a bit of a necessity. Mdblm came home from night shift and it was off to the hospital for me. Never fear, I was admitted immediately and now that I have some drugs I'm on the mend - be it very slowly.

But that's enough of that unpleasantness. It's been a week but I really wanted to share the details of my swing dancing frenzy. It's been a very long time since I've ventured out dancing on this grand a scale and I didn't realise just how much I've missed it.

From November 24th - 27th, Melbourne played host to the 11th Annual Melbourne Lindy Exchange (MLX) - four nights of swing dancing featuring live bands and DJs 'til the wee small hours, and social activities during the day for those who are up to it. It really has been a long time since I've attended anything like this so I decided to take it easy and only do two of the four nights on offer.

Fitzroy Town Hall
Friday night's dance was held at the Fitzroy Town Hall and, as you can see from the pic above, the dance floor was all smooth and shiny... It was divine! There was a large crowd and it was great to see so many old, familiar faces. I even got the chance to blow the dust off some my favourite moves.

I was also having a particularly good hair night too. Can you believe this do stood up to nearly 3 hours of jumping around in sweaty, humid conditions?  All achieved with some setting lotion and rollers, and some inspiration from Lauren Rennell's 'Vintage Hairstyling' book.

Sunday night was a less formal affair but still featured a live band at both the main event and the after-party. Surprisingly there was still a substantial crowd left standing, even after the Swing Mafia Pub Crawl, although many of them had passed out on couches well before midnight.

One of the few stayers
The music got quite funky in the early hours and I even got the chance to bust some 'hip hop' swing moves with an old friend. He's loads of fun and his dance-card is always full. I was exhausted but was having way too much fun to leave and pushed myself that little bit too far.

While I had an awesome weekend of activity, I have since been confined to bed with this god-awful cold. See where exercise will get you! As I said earlier, the drugs are doing their stuff so I'm hoping to be back in the next couple of days.

Until then...

- Tamara

Friday, 25 November 2011

Not waving, drowning!!

This week has sped by in a blur and I really don't feel as though I've achieved very much at all. After all the sewing I did for the market, I've lost a lot of momentum and I've so many UFOs at the moment, I fear I may drown under their accumulated weight. To be honest, I really don't know where to begin.

Here's a small selection of my 'projects in waiting'...

This pattern was hard won on Ebay about 3 years ago and I had the perfect fabric in my stash so I cut it as soon as it arrived. The neckline proved to be a little more challenging than my skills at the time, this is as far as I got...

My next 'PiW' is not technically a UFO but I'm still dragging my feet. We have a cocktail party next Saturday and I thought I might like to make something new to wear. This 1940s cutie has been slowly making its way up the priority list and it looks relatively simple.

I was under the impression this pattern was unused but when I unfolded the pieces, the embroidery transfer was missing. Damn! The teal koshibo fabric I've chosen will fall beautifully but I fear it may end up being too plain. Hence the hesitancy to start construction.

Lastly, it too has been hard going but I've made a little progress on my Freestylin' Frankenstein top. You may recall I had decided to put aside versions 1 & 2 and start a 3rd version based on a late 1950s cowl neck top.

I've managed to solve the sleeve problem by removing a considerable amount from the cap - free styled of course! If accuracy is important to you, best look away now...

Here's the result...

The neckline still isn't quite right but I really like this version.

So dear readers, I propose a question to you: How many UFOs are too many UFOs?
Is there such a thing?

- Tamara

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Let there be Roller Derby... and tacos!


With such an activity filled weekend, and then family commitments, this is the first chance I've had to sit in front of the computer. So, without further ado, let's get to it shall we?

This Saturday night was Roller Derby night and what a night it was! We saw a double-header but the main event was the Victorian Roller Derby League All Stars vs the Rat City Rollergirls (Seattle, USA). From the minute the Rat City girls hit the track, it was obvious we were going to be slaughtered. They used their warm up time to run drills; jumping to alternating sides of the track at the sound of a whistle, the team in unison. They appeared to be a force to be reckoned with, and they didn't disappoint. The final score - the VRDL: 87 to Seattle: 226 - like I said, it was a slaughter.

I'm yet to master all the features on my camera so please forgive me for the crappy pics.

On Sunday we headed to Newport for a little slice of Mexico at the 'Once Upon a Time in the West - Car Park Fiesta. It was roughly a 40 minute drive from home, but Mdblm & I have a thing for Mexican food and we had heard the Taco Truck would be in attendance. Their food comes highly recommended, and it was delicious!

We were also treated to a little 'tex-mex' music with a performance by 'El Westies' and, the highlight of the day, 'Mariachi Los Romanticos'. These guys are the real deal. They played traditional Mexican folk songs, mixed in a couple of interesting covers, and, of course, the Mexican Hat Dance for the kids.

So, while Roller Derby and tacos may not seem to have anything in common, I beg to differ.
As far as I'm concerned, they're a great combination for fun!

- Tamara

Friday, 18 November 2011

Smile, you're wearing Patons

It's time of another Fashionable Friday and this week I'd thought I'd do something a little different. Ordinarily, Fashionable Friday features pages from the 1930s Weekly Times but today I'd like to introduce you to the lovely ladies of Patons, circa 1940.

And boy, are they happy to be here!



Happy, happy Friday everyone!! 

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