Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Unexpected shopping trip and one magical find...

Yesterday, I awoke early in the morning and decided to pursue a productive day of exercise and homework. That plan was abolished after I developed an urge to go on a shopping trip...but a very big shopping trip! I didn't fancy taking a stroll down to the local shops and seeing what I could find there; Instead, I felt like taking a trip to Meadow Hall and seeing what I could gather. After hours of persuading mum to drop all plans and take the train with me, she finally agreed! I knew that I wouldn't find anything truly vintage within such a modern shopping center but that didn't stop me from searching with all my might for items that held a classic or retro touch!
The first shop we came across was Urban Outfitters. This shop has always been classed in my eyes as absolutely INCREDIBLE. The interior of the shop always seems to excite me in ways unimaginable to the imagination, and the items within it hold the same sort of power. My favourite parts of this shop are the smaller, more hidden sections containing little knick knacks and trinkets. A rejuvenated and recycled table stood tall and had a number of books spread across it. Now, I am a keen reader if I find a book which intrigues me and challenges my mind but these books weren't primarily literary books- they were graphical, imagery books too. This was even better for me as I'm an extremely dedicated Graphic Design student. When my hand reached upon a book named '1000 record covers' I knew that this was the one for me for various reasons.

This is the magical find (aka. my latest pride and joy)

The cover attracted me straight away due to it's rainbow effect and bright, bold pattern. I love the simplistic typography and the white colour of the title in contrast to the statement background. As this book was sealed down in the shop, I almost bought it as a lucky dip. I didn't know what I was going to find when I looked inside it but I knew that I'd love it no matter what it contained. As soon as I got back on the train, I rushed to open it with my eager fingers and immediately discovered such beauty. The first couple of pages contained an overview of the 1960's (My absolute golden years). And that was when I saw it...the name of one of my favourite singers...the legendary PJ PROBY! I knew nothing else mattered if at least one of my boy's were mentioned inside this book, but I continued to read on. Many iconic vinyl covers were shown throughout every single year up until 1994. The first being 'Chubby Checker- For Twisters Only (1961)' and the last being 'Oasis- Definitely Maybe (1994)'. This book, in my eyes, shows me the progression of music from the 60's until recent years and also shows me the progression and changing attitudes on album design too. Whilst brighter, cheesier covers were shown earlier on; darker more sexually explicit covers came later.
I'm thoroughly excited to read the rest of this book and hopefully find some albums which I haven't ever set my eyes or ears upon yet. For a small price of £12.99, I now have something which will last me a lifetime and increase my passion furthermore. 

Sunday, 17 August 2014

Dresses Galore...

After coming to the heart breaking realisation that my wardrobe is losing more and more space within it to fit all of my clothes; I believe that it is time to share with you a few of my staple (and of course vintage) pieces of 2014. As a keen dress wearer, I'd say it's first priority to show you my mountain of beautiful, yet also probably-too-dressy to wear everyday, dresses. It was a hard job but I've chosen 7 of my favourites and I'm going to be shimmying them your way!

7) 90's flower power, drop hem dress:

I found this little beauty amongst rails and rails of colourful garments at Judy's Affordable Vintage Fair in Lincoln. It wasn't too expensive at around £15 and I knew that I'd wear it throughout summer. The pattern is simply stunning with its bold edge yet feminine and dainty approach. This piece is branded as St Michael's, and any vintage lover knows that one of these find's is always a happy time. The only down side to this dress for me is the drop hem. Now, I know that this is actually a current fashion trend at the moment but for me, as a curvier girl, the lower hem just makes me look larger than necessary and doesn't pull me in at the waist for a flattering touch. 

6) 60's Chinese shift dress:

This is one of the most beautiful dresses that I own due to its hand embroidered style and well tailored fashion. I picked this up at a local Vintage and Craft Fair for a measly £10. It was sold to me as an original dress handmade in China in the 1960s. As this dress has no label, I thoroughly believe the story. The style isn't similar to any other dress that I have as the material is thick, stiff and luxurious. This straight, shift dress is however a struggle to wear on hotter, summer days as it is very tight and restrictive. Nonetheless, it is a true one of a kind beauty which I can wear and be assured that nobody else around here will have. 

5) 60's shift dress:

This was one of the first dresses which I bought from a vintage fair in 2013. The pastel colours of lilac, orange and powder blue attracted me as they aren't usually colours that I would associate with each other. The dress was only £7 and at such a cheap price how could I ever pass up the offer? The style of this dress is one of my favourites due to the two pockets attached on either side of the waist. When I bought this dress I was a little larger than I am now so in order to wear it these days, I have to pull the waist in with either a belt or a piece of material. I prefer to use a rolled up piece of scrap material in either light blue or lilac so that I can tie it up at the back and make a sweet, little bow to set the dress off. 

4) Mode local, 60s style dress:  

I found this stunning dress in a nearby charity shop. It was sold under the vintage section and had the tendency's of an older made dress due to it's flared style. The bright red seemed to draw me in as I could see myself wearing this in the summer and contrasting it with some white, chunky heeled sandals. I chose this outfit choice many times this summer and it never failed to brighten up my day! The brand is Mode, which is a local shop but there isn't a date stated inside the dress. It comes with an attached belt which you can bring to the front for a singed waist and beautiful bow or it can be tied at the back for a figure hugging, less noticeable pull. 

3) Handmade 60s shift dress:

I entered an expensive looking vintage shop in Lincoln and never thought i'd walk away with so many buys. This lemon dress was the first item to catch my eye. I had been looking for yellow dress for so long because of the song 'That's What Love Will Do' By Joe Brown. For £35 I can now wear this and imagine a man taking me to a dance and singing "THAAAT YELLOW DRESSSS SHE WORE WHEN WE WENT DANCING SUNDAY NIGHT!" The only down side to this dress is the fact that it's just above the knee- which for me is an exceptionally long length. It makes the dress seem much more posh than it actually is which restricts me from wearing it day-to-day. I've been looking around for a tailor however as a simple job of taking it up shouldn't take too much time or cost too much. The colour has been a fabulous choice for this summer as it's bright enough to make a statement without looking ridiculous. 

2) 60s Wiggle dress:

This dress was bought from the same shop as the yellow dress above. It was also priced at £35 but with student discount, I was tempted into buying it. When hung up on a clothes hanger, this dress looked limp and flat but when I entered the changing room to try it on- I was soon absolutely amazed! The dress hugged my body so very tightly and proved to me how deceiving vintage shopping can be. As the style is a wiggle dress- a fond style of the mid 1960s, it is as tight on the bottom as it is on the top. This leaves the waist line looser and so every time I walk, it moves with me. I feel incredibly sexy in this dress and would recommend the style to every single girl in the world! As it is simple to look at due to the block colour; I like to wear a bold, statement necklace with it to dress it up or if I want to leave it natural looking then I tend to stick to a thin gold chain. 

1) Psychedelic 60s collared dress:

And here we are at my number one favourite dress! It is safe to say that this psychedelic, zip-front dress is the BEST DRESS I HAVE EVER PURCHASED. I recently found this at a vintage fair in Whitby for only £14! The multiple patterns combine to make an absolute stand out piece which allows me to be noticed for all the right reasons wherever I go! I like to wear this dress pulled in at the waist with a thin brown belt as it adds a shape to the straight shift effect. I love this dress as the zip front allows me to either show off a high peter pan collar or a low chest reveal. This can change depending on my mood and depending on the occasion! The material of this dress is also so easy to wash without distorting the shape. Overall, this dress is such a fun piece to wear and makes me feel like a definite 60s girl wherever I roam! 

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Our very vintage holiday affairs;

Hello and fine greetings to anybody indulging in this new post! I am back again with the desperate urge to share and spread wide and far the news of my recent holiday to Whitby. Now, Whitby is a small fisherman town in North Yorkshire. It has been a keen holiday destination for me and my family for years due to its sweet, carefree vibe (and it's delicious fish and chips...) and this year it was no different.

Whitby in all it's glory.

We set off with our bags packed and arrived in just short of 2 hours. This time, we had decided to stay in a newly decorated cottage in the center of town named Sea Shanty Cottage. From the outside, the weathered, white walls looked authentic and beautiful yet I was unaware of how amazed I would be when I climbed the steep stairs and entered the 2 story palace. The rooms were unbelievably sleek and well designed yet still managed to exuberate charm with their beach themed ways. Luckily I went on a wild, room hunting tour with my camera and captured some of the beauty within it.

This is, quite clearly, the amazing view.
This was the first floor bedroom with an amazing view.

This was the room that we decided to allow dad to inhabit due to his horrific snoring issues and his constant decisions to have "an early night". The bedroom on the floor above became mine and mum's stunning plaza for the week and we loved every single second of it!

What a bed fit for two queens.
Claw bath.....next to the bed? Luxury at its best.

AND a cotton wool ball stash

 Opposite our old-fashioned hideout was a number of vintage shops (what a dream!) and so straight away I forced mum and dad to come and look round them as soon as possible with me. The first shop was selling knick-knacks and trinkets of the retro kind; her shop layout was truly beautiful and well thought about. I ended up buying a vintage book page from Alice in Wonderland which has been framed and then I couldn't help but buy a handmade and wrapped lemon soap bar as well which came to about £5.00 (HEY BIG SPENDER!)
It's stunning, right?
 I also decided to visit the shop next door which catered in antique jewellery and other delicate items. I ended up buying a hand-blown sea glass jar from the 1940s in order to store my incense sticks in when I arrived home.

Minutes before the scarf escaped.

That night we decided to go for a long walk around Whitby. We walked along most streets, most areas of beach and definitely most bars. I felt so at ease, almost like I was in a different country due to the serene beauty of the whole place. I could hardly believe that this was the only time that I have visited this place and felt so strongly about it. Maybe as you get older, you begin to appreciate the true wonders of the world? Well, that's what I'm believing.
If only I could be here every day of my life.

Before our time was coming to an end in the magnificent town; mum surprised me with the most exciting, fantastic, exhilarating, marvelous, genuinely perfect surprise that she could have possibly considered. She was taking me to a VINTAGE FAIR! To me, this was music to my ears and all things good about life. Our local vintage fairs' back home are so small and disappointing that this could only be an upgrade of the most fabulous kind. The fair filled the full hall of the pavilion theater and blew my mind beyond belief. I bought several new items of clothing, many vinyl records and of course some cute bits and bobs (which I am going to go into more detail with in my next post).

The most magnificent sight to grace my eyes. 
Before we knew it, we were travelling home with a lot more bags and a lot less dollar. It was honestly one of the best holiday's of my life because I have to admit, you can't beat the English air...or the English boys!


Thursday, 3 July 2014

Well, it's been 9 months since my last post and I feel somewhat disgraced at my abandonment of the whole affair. Since then, I have gone through all of my AS exams, had several panics about what I wish to do in my future and undergone a defining, shorter hair-do.

(Evidence of said hair-do.)

Even though this post is basically an attempt to get me back into the swing of blogging; I also want to share with you a number of "favourites" that have come into my life recently. I'm talking about films, television programs, songs, fashions, family treasures and even celebrities! I feel like a list would be the preferred option to demonstrate these adoration's, so hold on, here we go.    

1) Film- 'It Happened at the World's Fair'Lobby Card 2
This 1963 musical film casts Elvis as the lovable, caring pilot Mike Edwards. He basically scouts around with his partner in crime, Danny (Played by Gary Lockwood) in an attempt to earn enough money to claim back their plane; which they lost when Danny gambled away their funds. This musical ensemble has the backdrop of the famous Seattle Center which once was the host of some of the largest, futuristic science fair's. During the movie, Mike and Danny hitchhike a lift with a farmer and befriend his young, adorable daughter Sue-Lin. The film then tells the tale of Mike looking after Sue-Lin and meeting the soon-to-be-thawed-out woman of his dreams: Diane Warren (who he of course has a happy ending with). This is a definite must see for any Elvis fan or even any fan of older, more authentic films. The plot is vaguely loose but it is simply made up for with the joyful, sing-along edge. It is an all round, feel good film which certainly manages to make me smile.

2) Song- 'When You're In Love With a Beautiful Woman- Dr Hook'   

After finding this beauty within my dad's old record collection I thought it was only right to test it out and determine my feelings on it. The needle lightly graced the surface of the record and an incredibly beat-filled instrumental came bursting out. I had the chore of repeatedly stacking and playing this over and over again as I simply couldn't get enough. Before I knew it, I was humming it day in and day out, all around town. I was extremely surprised to find that this song was released in 1979 as it sounded much more like a typical 60's beat. I underwent a slight bit of Wikipedia parusing on Dr Hook and found out that I actually enjoyed many more of their songs than I firstly truly understood. This song is just a must listen to for anyone due to its retro, repetitive vibe. 

3) Celebrity- Dawn O' Porter
I had always been aware of this woman since watching her various shows and pod casts on fashion, beauty, sex and other girly edits. But, it wasn't until recently that I started to admire her even more for her love of fashion her care-free sense of humour. I am such a fan of her latest television program too ('This Old Thing' on Channel 4 at 8pm) as her interest in vintage and retro fashion is directly correlated to mine. She enjoys fun, bold 60's and 80's prints and isn't afraid to style them out in any which way. She provides handy tips on how to renovate old items too which is extremely interesting for anyone who has suffered from a fatal wardrobe floor due to the long lengths or plain colours that can arise in vintage clothing. (I also found out that she is married to the hilariously stupendous Chris O' Dowd...how much more jealous can I get?) 

4) Object- War collage from the 1800's
This antique,treasure-hoarding, framed collage has had the prized position of our lounge wall for quite some time but I have never particularly regarded it as something important or interesting...until yesterday. On closer inspection, it includes a number of items which connect two lovers together from the war. A glove, a fan, a medicine bottle, engagement promises, letters and playing cards are just some of the pieces inside the cove. One of the pieces in the cabinet which gained my attention is the small, cardboard pot of 'Bourjois Rosette Rouge'. This delicate beauty product seems to be one of the first Bourjois pieces ever made and it seems utterly unbelievable that 150 years on- I happen to have the modern day equivalent of the Bourjois rouge blush in my makeup bag too. This antique jewel is ever so precious but we have no idea who the two people were. It has triggered a mission within my mind and I am determined to unravel the pieces and unveil the true story.

5) Fashion- The Hawaiian print 
I am currently obsessing over the eye-catching, summery prints on offer in the shops! They tend to replicate the firm 80's style and can add a retro touch to any bland wardrobe. This top was a surprisingly good buy at £18 (with student discount) from New Look. It has free-flowing tassels all along the bottom of it too which adds a certain spice. I've seen many Hawaiian prints on vintage websites and in vintage stores too such as; Beyond Retro, Rokit and Cow Vintage. I'd say they're a must have for this scorching weather. 


Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Vinyl Junkie

Alphabetically ordered too...slightly obsessive Alice. 
I am extremely excited to say that this is my first official blog post everybody. HURRAH FOR ME! To suit the occasion, I have decided to blog about a topic which I am very passionate and enthusiastic about. This topic could be none other than the obsessive kingdom of...vinyl records! I absolutely adore collecting these and storing them in my bedroom. I have accumulated a few from my dad but these are mainly an array of 7" singles which range from Cilla Black to Johnny Kidd. Some of these records are perfect to listen to, but there is always the trouble of having to get up and change the record after every song as I don't have a stacking machine on my record player. This can become a bit of a hassle and so listening to LP's is my ultimate favourite. I have so many of these records; and most of them have a wonderful back story to them. My first ever LP vinyl was given to me by my mum and it was 'The Motown Christmas album'. Since then, I have only really become fond of original, single artist records- rather than various artist collections (they just have a sweeter, more authentic feel to them, don't they?).

The triple whammy of heaven.
Nonetheless, I do have three favourite records within my collection and I would love to share them with you. My top three selection consists of; Herman's Hermits, the legendary PJ Proby- at his very best and the legendary PJ Proby at his very best vol.2 (because what would volume one be without its sibling?).
These three records are constantly bellowing out throughout my house and they make for a perfectly happy mood. Firstly, Herman's Hermit's self proclaimed record has a variety of lovely, jolly tunes on it. To me, these tunes have a much different air to them than the rest of Herman's songs and this could be because they have a more romantic feeling. Don't get me wrong, I am incredibly in love with most of their songs but these less promoted songs have a definite edge. Now, I got my PJ Proby vol.2 LP before having the first volume...and I don't regret it one single bit! Having only heard my dad singing 'Hold me' at the top of his voice day in and day out- it became slightly addictive. So, when I saw this lovely creation in my favourite record shop in Lincoln- I just had to buy it for a reasonable price of £10. After becoming skeptical to whether I would enjoy any of his other songs, it became clear that this was the best LP that I owned and my parents knew just how much I my adoration would grow for him. It was a wonderful surprise when I opened a suspiciously flat, square present on Christmas day of 2012 and it turned out to be the first volume of the legendary PJ Proby. I immediately raced upstairs to listen to the songs and even though I thought it was impossible, this soon became my number one present of the year! The songs were so beautifully haunting that I stayed up until the early hours of the morning listening to them with my mum. I still cannot allow 'I've got my eyes on you' to grace my ears without getting a spread of goosebumps.

I wish I could stay and talk to you all night about these perfect albums, but I'm afraid an early night is in order for college tomorrow! I would adore it if you would take some time to listen to these artists- I think they deserve so much more recognition than they get and I just know they will manage to brighten up your day.


Monday, 30 September 2013

Introductory shenanigans

I would like to begin my first blog post with a hearty hello to you all!
I have finally decided to leap into the magical world of blogging after self-debating for a seriously long time. It's a chilly, quiet night and I am currently curled up in my bed with a toasty hot water bottle as my only companion. From here, I can see so many little vintage treasures and the mere sight of them allows me to understand why I even started the notion of blogging in the first place. I should probably introduce myself before I travel any further into this exciting journey however, so we'll save the retro perks for our later encounters! My name is Alice Vasey and I am a 16 years young vintage fanatic from a small town in Lincolnshire, known as Grimsby. I am very happy with my years so far in life as they have been so very sweet- and many unforgettable memories have been gathered along the way. But, it must be said that one of my most nostalgic memories was the day in which I heard my dad playing some music from the 60s. As soon as I heard the catchy tunes and the melodic lyrics, I knew that these songs would always have a place in my heart. My adoration for the 60s music began to blossom more and more each day until I found myself becoming fond of the clothing, films and even the celebrities! At this moment in time, I could officially edge to say that I am a modern girl living in a vintage world. Before I delve too deep into my background story, I would love for you to understand that I am making this blog to manifest all of my vintage buys, loves and guilty pleasures to you!
As 'Oh Carol' comes to a hasty finish in my ears, I am lead to believe that this would be a perfect time to end this introductory post before I babble for England.
Hugs and Kisses, Al x