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Fit for the Queen

Fit for the Queen

Hello! A warm welcome to Gloriously Vintage today.  I am writing about the marvellous Day Out I enjoyed at the end of September. 

 

My husband and I went to Buckingham Palace to see the Exhibition of HM the Queen’s clothes -“Fashioning a Reign“.  This day was very special because it was the first time I had been to Buckingham Palace to see the State Rooms that are open to the public in the Summer when HM The Queen is at Balmoral her home in Scotland.

 

The summer has been different for us this year. 2016 is my 60th year and a lot of diverse things have been happening to us as we have celebrated, I started my Blog in February and we decided to get on with having a new kitchen and to create a downstairs cloakroom (rather like Harry Potter) under the stairs.  Our house is very small and therefore the impact of the changes we were making hit us hard.  One week into the project we suffered a serious flood in the kitchen due to a faulty valve that was traumatic, but could have been much, much worse.

 

I love a challenge and as we lost our kitchen inside the house, a kitchenette was created in the garden, in our little summerhouse and in the strong concrete shed in the garden. It is amazing how resourceful one can be and at the beginning of August it was summer!  I believe completely in the saying “Necessity is the Mother of Invention”.  It certainly forced some creative thinking to find a solution to not having a kitchen.  We have a dear little Summerhouse at the bottom of our garden.  As it has mains electricity were able to set up a comfortable kitchenette. The kettle, toaster and microwave all fitted in with a basic supply of cutlery and cups and plates.  We have two comfortable chairs and a table and chairs there already so it worked very well.

 

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I am relaxing in  our Summerhouse/Kitchenette after work.

 

My washing machine went into the concrete shed which also has mains electricity. As I provide all the materials for my Housekeeping Service it was essential to be able to continue with laundry throughout the project.  After the flood our kitchen fitter created a temporary sink on the terrace outside the kitchen with a cold water supply.  We had a gas BBQ in the garden too although this was not as appealing as the space around it turned into a builders yard!  It was a bit like camping.  At first the novelty of it all made it rather fun. As the weeks went by it was not as much fun and we were getting tired as meal preparation and laundry was taking a long time to do.

 

A great perk was to go out to eat after work on days when it was raining!

 

My laundry schedule for work and home and also my mother was working, but very slowly in comparison to how I work with the washing machine in the house at my disposal round the clock. As the power and water were “off” at times I had to agree with our fitter to have the power off in the mornings only which stopped my morning laundry schedule at 8.30am and pushed more into the night hours to maximise time.

What we were not prepared for was the length of time this would all take. August and September have been interesting and October is starting with phase 2 of the project which I hope will be far easier.  It is now Autumn so I am glad that I am not still using my garden kitchen and having to do all the “cooking” using our microwave oven in the summerhouse!  Glenn and I have continued to work almost full time throughout these weeks and have needed the British stiff upper lip, stoically carrying on when days have been challenging!

 

So dear Reader you can see from this backdrop a Day Out seemed like a beacon of hope and delight.

 

We went on a coach tour to London. I was losing heart through the summer as the dates for the Tour were not easy to free up due to work commitments.  I was thrilled when a last date was added -so we made our booking  –  we were going.  I had read about Fashioning a Reign and my friend went to see it at the beginning of the summer -so I heard how marvellous it was.

 

I was born in 1956, three years after the Coronation.  All my life I have known the Royal Family as HM The Queen was just slightly younger than my mother.  Like my mother, she has always been a constant fixture and reference for my life.  As I have grown older I have come to appreciate more and more the amazing life of service, the sacrifices she has made and now what a wonderful role model she is for living a full life into your eighties and nineties.

 

So dear Reader, I needed an outfit that would be fit for the Queen.

 

At first I planned to wear end of summer colours and it was just before the autumn equinox.  It started as my outfits often do with a choice of handbag.  This naturally leads on to shoes and then the rest of the outfit follows.  I definitely wanted to wear vintage style rather than trousers which would have felt too casual for me.

This was all sorting itself out swimmingly until I realised that my feet would probably not survive the day because of my shoes! So dear Reader, I decided to go and purchase a pair of flatter shoes that I would be able to walk in for longer.  I own some Hotter shoes that are lovely plain almond toe court and they have a low heel – they are my concession to being 60 years old.

 

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My “Shimmy ” Shoes from Hotter.  I really love high heels, but these were more practical!

 

I can wear them for about 4 -5 hours before my feel start to complain. This day was about 7.00am to 9.00 pm, considerably longer!

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My  “Jewel “Shoes from Hotter.  Shoes that are even MORE practical!

 

Once the shoes and handbag was sorted out I put together a comfortable skirt that would be good to sit in on the coach and a jacket to meet the in between season time of year that is so great for jackets.

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This skirt looks so much better with high heels!  I have three Buckingham Palace carrier bags now!

 

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Looking bright eyed and bushy tailed at 7.10 am, waiting to get going.

 

Outfit Details

 

“Shimmy” Nude Almond Toe Shoes (worn until just after lunch)  Hotter

“Jewel” Navy Lizard Shoes (worn from Lunchtime until returning home!)   Hotter

Viyella Blue Checked Pleated Skirt  Oxfam on Line

Cream V Neck Top   Marks andSpencer

Blue Jacket   Eastex (inherited)

Nude Handbag      Next, bought last year

Patterned Silk Scarf   Oxfam on Line

1950’s Navy Blue Ruched Nylon Gloves   Diane Ashman

Blush Pink Brooch on Top

2 Rows , Lotus Pearls

Large Pearl Stud Earings

2 x Stretch Pearl Cuff Bracelets in Blush Pearl

Ecco Leaf Brooch in gold finish   Oxfam on Line

 

There is something very special about getting up very early and moving about quietly outside because neighbours are either asleep or just getting up! Do you remember, dear Reader, early starts to go on holiday when you were a child?  I certainly do and the excitement associated with it still comes flooding back to me.  So getting up at 5.00am felt very exciting!

 

We went off to London at 7.30am and arrived at Tower Bridge at 11.00am.

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Our driver parked so well in this tight coach parking space.  He reversed out too!

 

 

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Smiling in front of the most vivid yellow wall in the  underground coach park.  “Great!  It’s nearly time for lunch – breakfast was AGES ago!”

 

The next part of the day was a River Cruise on the Thames alighting at Tower Bridge.

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That is Tower Bridge in the background.

 

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Glenn took this photograph of Tower Bridge.  Can you think of a good caption for this couple in the foreground?  Mine is – “Where have the Ice creams gone?  We were licking them a minute ago!”

 

 

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The back of our cruiser.

 

 

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Our boat is the one in the middle of the River waiting to come and get us all.

 

 

Lunch was served as we went up and down the River taking in the sights on port and starboard.

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Looking forward to Lunch.  The table mat was non slip.  Our cruise was not too choppy!

 

 

It was delicious and we were fortunate that it did not rain.

We returned to the coach and were driven to the Palace. The tour through the Palace is one way, so we were shown where we would be collected by the coach at the end of the afternoon.

 

It would take 15 minutes walk from the back of the Palace, through the gardens and out to meet the coach.

 

The entrance we went to was on the other side of the Palace – the Ambassadors Entrance. We had to pass through airport style security – our bags were x rayed and I set off the alarm with my metal brooches (as I had two – one on my top and one on my jacket).  Once through, we set off through the State Rooms towards the Exhibition.

The State Rooms were magnificent. There was so much to see that I hope to visit again next summer to focus on the State Rooms more, also having read the guide book thoroughly beforehand.  For this time, dear Reader, I was all agog to take in the clothes and to see the designs of Norman Hartnell, Hardy Amies and Angela Kelly.  What I really wanted to see was the Wedding Dress and the Coronation Dress.  These two wonderful dresses had never been displayed together before.  Do look at the video in this link to see the dresses.

 

There were cases of the Queens hats and it was interesting to see the way the designs varied from different milliners and decades. I could remember many of the hats from Tours, The Silver jubilee, The Golden Jubilee and the Family Royal Weddings.  All the outfits from the Diamond Jubilee and HM The Queen’s 90th Birthday Celebrations were there too.

 

The only shoes displayed in the Exhibition were the Wedding Shoes. They were cream satin peep toes strappy sandals with an ankle strap.  There was the most charming deep oval shoes box with an E on the top, with a crown over the E.  I would have loved to see more shoes and handbags.

The Exhibition covered the Official Robes, Evening dresses and clothes for Tours. There was so much to see and take in.  Each outfit was displayed on a model, backed by large pictures of the event.

 

The clothes are of course brought to life by HM The Queen. However another element was clear – clothes have a diplomatic role and send wonderful signals of cordiality, deference and power.  The unspoken message in so many of the designs shows the care and integrity that goes into the design, planning, fitting and wearing of the completed ensembles.

 

This is a skill I know is being passed to the Duchess of Cambridge. She is learning how to do this and I am sure HM The Queen is eager to show how to use fashion to powerful effect, complimenting countries as we have seen on the recent tour of Canada by The Cambridges.  Kate looked wonderful in her striking first outfit with a hat adorned with maple leaves and wearing the maple leaf diamond brooch.

As we passed through the remaining State Rooms, I took in the wonderful paintings of Queen Victoria, Prince Albert and 5 of their children, portraits of Queen Mary and George V. I also marvelled at the chandeliers shining and twinkling in every room.

We stepped out onto the terrace and saw the large green lawn where the Garden Parties are held.

 

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The entrance behind me is where the Royal Family comes out into the Garden for the Summer Garden Parties.

 

 

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The back of Buckingham Palace.

 

 

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Looking back  at the Palace as we were making the 15 minute walk to meet our coach.

 

 I was very affected by the thought I had walked where The Queen walks.  It was so special.

 

The shop at the end of the tour had many different souvenirs.

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There was a lot to see in the shop!  Glenn took these photographs while I was buying my book.

 

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Souvenirs of all sizes!

 

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This Steward is helping a visitor make her purchases!

 

I bought the book “Dressing the Queen” by Angela Kelly and I will be posting about it to share my enjoyment of it with you, dear Reader.

Glenn bought me a corgi soft toy to take home!

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So cute!

 

I have called her Susan after the corgi that the Queen bred her line of corgis from.  Susan is a dear reminder of a unique and memorable Day Out.

I was impressed by the Stewards at Buckingham Palace. They were in uniform and therefore easy to recognise.  They wore Dark navy blue three piece suits with a cape in navy blue with a red collar.  I think the uniforms are based on Court Dress which is navy blue with red trimmings.  The jackets were fitted and single breasted and had red on the back of a revered collar with navy lapels.  The capes reminded me of those worn by nurses in the 1960’s.  They looked so smart and were all friendly, courteous and helpful.  I kept asking questions as I went round and they did their best to answer!

 

As always when travelling, we seemed to get home quickly and arrived back at home by 9.00pm we enjoyed the picnic tea I had left on the coach to return to. My feet had survived very well in the blue shoes for the afternoon and I was pleased with my outfit, which had been just right.

Do chat in the comments, especially if you have been to a Garden Party or have visited Buckingham Palace.  It is very interesting in many ways and will elicit different responses. 

For me, dear Reader, I felt humbled by the evidence of such obvious hard work from everyone involved, from the Royal Family to the army of Housekeepers and Stewards who had made the Palace such a fascinating place to visit.

 

 

A big thank you to Glenn for taking the photographs.

 

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Can A/W 2016 Trends “do” Vintage?

Can A/W 2016 Trends “do” Vintage?

Hello and a big welcome to Gloriously Vintage. I hope you will enjoy a quick round up of the A/W 2016 Fashion Trends and start thinking about how they could work with your wardrobe.

 

 

 

I love to wear vintage style and always mix in a few new pieces as well. My favourite Era is the 1950’s and I love influences from the 1930’s and early 1960’s too.  Looking at the seasonal fashion trends is a big part of my interest in styling outfits and it always exerts some influence on my wardrobe  – even if the influence is very small.  That is the freedom of wearing vintage style – you are outside or above high fashion – but a “nod” to it adds piquancy to wardrobe choices.

 

Twice a year I do “The Big Seasonal Changeover” – S/S and A/W. Around that time I check out the fashion trends and have a long look at my wardrobe, accessories, and jewellery and shoes to see which trends will suit me and what I have in my wardrobe.  This enables me to ring the changes a little and enjoy a “nod” to what fashionistas are doing!

 

So where do I find the A/W 2016 trends?

Well dear Reader, I make sure I have bought the August copies of Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar and then certainly buy the copies of the key month of September. Fashion Magazines are always a month ahead.  The previews in the August issue acts as a taster for the full reveal in the big September issue.

I have been following this pattern for some years now and find it to work well and be fun at the same time.

If I am searching out a few new pieces for my wardrobe on Oxfam on line for example I may as well choose current colours or shapes that will fit in beautifully and allow me to be creative.  Also when I am in charity shops or at vintage fairs I have a clear idea of what I am looking for.  If none of the trends suit me – well dear Reader I just happily do my own thing and rejoice in my individuality!

 

I have two maxims about style:

Nothing is smart unless it suits

And

Always dress up because others will wish they had!

The first maxim is essential and came from my Grandmother who was a professional dressmaker. The second one came from a style book years ago.  It has stood me in good stead over my life and has helped to increase my confidence to dress how I want to and enjoy it immensely.

 

So dear Reader here is a quick round up of the A/W2016 Trends. I have specified which publication they are from as the two magazines have highlighted some different trends this season.  Sometimes there is a great overlap in what they present as you would expect.  However this year it is a little different because the trends have been interpreted differently.

TRENDS (Vogue)

Mini Trends

  1. Winter sandals
  2. Long gloves for evening
  3. Heavy metal handbags
  4. Shearing – worn curly side out
  5. Red boots, shoes and handbag- pop of scarlet
  6. White 1980’s style shoes
  7. Adorned sweaters
  8. Buttons down the back – reversing tops and jackets
  9. Statement belt
  10. Matchy matchy accessories

TRENDS (Vogue)

  1. Modern British – heritage tweed and clashing tartans
  2. Silk – Boudoir dressing continues from S/S 16
  3. Mood indigo – Denim
  4. Velvet
  5. Coat check – leather and Vinyl and THE CAPE
  6. Duvet coats and jackets
  7. Shearling
  8. Military
  9. Boots
  10. Glasses with embellished frames

THE 7 BIG TRENDS (Vogue)

  1. Extremely large totes
  2. Soft military
  3. Polished Punk – a strong 1980’s influence here
  4. Tweed Redux – mixing heirloom tweeds and prince of Wales checks with stylist separates or just add white accessories
  5. Tweed with Vinyl
  6. Badass Florals – clashing prints
  7. Chokers
  8. Embellished velvet and rich brocade.

TRENDS (HARPER’S BAZAAR)

10 LIKES NOW

  1. Shoulder barring top – this trend caries on from S/S 16
  2. The cape
  3. Heritage handbag – either top handle or chain handle
  4. the roll neck sweater
  5. Hiking boots – chunky boots
  6. Corset belt – worn over a winter coat to cinch the waist
  7. Re-worked trench – leather
  8. Oversize trousers
  9. Velvet puffa coat both luxe and street style
  10. Ski Pants

TRENDS (HARPER’S BAZAAR)

  1. Scotland the Brave – tartans and tweeds
  2. Victorian Luxe – black lace, ruffles and pearls
  3. Great outdoors – classic autumn colours
  4. Rich velvet
  5. Contrasting prints
  6. The nomad – free spirit with inspiration from around the world.
  7. Embellishment
  8. Brocade

TRENDS (HARPER’S BAZAAR)

10 LIKES NOW

  1. Shoulder barring top – this trend caries on from S/S 16
  2. The cape
  3. Heritage handbag – either top handle or chain handle
  4. the roll neck sweater
  5. Hiking boots – chunky boots
  6. Corset belt – worn over a winter coat to cinch the waist
  7. Re-worked trench – leather
  8. Oversize trousers
  9. Velvet puffa coat both luxe and street style
  10. Ski Pants

 

TRENDS (HARPER’S BAZAAR)

  1. Scotland the brave – tartans and tweeds
  2. Victorian Luxe – black lace, ruffles and pearls
  3. Great outdoors – classic autumn colours
  4. Rich velvet
  5. Contrasting prints
  6. The nomad – free spirit with inspiration from around the world.
  7. Embellishment
  8. Brocade

 

Style Guide A/W TRENDS (HARPER’S BAZAAR)

TAILORING

  1. Monochrome chick
  2. Long and loose trouser suits – double breasted with exaggerated slouch
  3. Evening Detail – shoes adorned with jewels
  4. New waist the paper bag waist.
  5. The Ageless icon – jacket with extended lapels over a pleated silk corset = Timeless glamour
  6. Cinched and Sleek – wide belts
  7. Modern and playful
  8. Cape – The investment piece this year
  9. Embellishment – The finishing touch
  10. Pearl adorned Trousers for evening

 

ACCESSORIES (HARPER’S BAZAAR)

  1. Heart’s Desire – Pinks, golds, rosebuds and diamonds
  2. Forbidden forest – dark jewel colours- teal, emerald , black velvet embellishes bags
  3. Folktale
  4. Moonlight magic – black velvet with night stars embellishment

 

Sumptuous jewel colours and all shades of pink into lavender are the strong colour influences this season.

 

 

Here are the trends. Can they “do” vintage?

If you take a very purist view that vintage is separate completely, then the answer to this question must be a resounding “NO!”

I think there are certain trends here that can do vintage. The companies producing reproduction vintage fashions do produce collections for each season and therefore must take their influences from somewhere.  If like me you are putting your look together from vintage, vintage appropriate and new pieces the trends are open to interpretation.

 

What will I be following this A/W2016?

I will be looking at shades of pink, from blush and nude to deeper tones, to work them into my wardrobe. Rich berry tones are always wonderful as the autumn unfolds.

The jewel colours offer a lot of scope with jewellery and accessories.  I will also be trying to work in some lavender as well.  Dear Reader I will be using my Style Book to see what worked last year and it will help me to tweak some outfits to give them the “on trend twist” that is both fun to do and a bit of a challenge!

SCOTLAND THE BRAVE/TWEED

I love British Heritage fabrics checks and tweed and Scottish influenced plaids so these will feature greatly in my choices. The pieces I own will come out really on trend.  Tweeds are so versatile depending on what they are paired with.

This trend can certainly “do” vintage and look good whatever eras you prefer. Mixing tweed and plain fabrics always works and I may add nude courts instead of darker coloured shoes too.

VELVET

I plan to work this trend into my wardrobe with evening bags and separates.

I have my eye on a number of items on the internet and have some velvet items I would like to rework with my dressmaker.

A black devore full skirt I have will come into its own this year for the Christmas season.

THE CAPE

I do not own a cape currently, but have some large wraps that ore flowing like a cape. They go over a suit or jacket and skirt adding warmth and a bit of drama to the finished look.  The silhouette is the important shape here.  Also dear reader wraps bridge the gap before really warm coats are needed as the season progresses.

SHEARLING

My heart is always glad when this is on trend as have two wonderful coats – both with the curly side out as luck would have it.

EMBELLISHMENT

Dear Reader, do check out this post from earlier this year to see how you can create your own embellishment with vintage brooches. I will be looking at ways to embellish outfits this way.  Grouping brooches is the way to add flair to many different outfits.  It is possible to emphasis eth waist, they can go on pockets and on sleeves – you can be really creative here.

 

BROCADE

A fabric that is more for the evening, but one that brings immediate glamour and luxury to your outfit.

 

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I will be wearing this jacket as my “nod” to this trend. I wore it at Christmas last year and also for my 60th Birthday Party in February.  Brocade is quite difficult because you do not want to look as though you are decked out in upholstery fabric or curtains!  (It was OK for Scarlet O’Hara, and the Von Trapp Children!)

Mini TRENDS can “do” Vintage too!

Handbags

Handbags with a top handle or chain handle are the bags to have this A/W2016. These can certainly be found in the vintage bags of the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s.  They can be worked into vintage style outfits easily.  I have a Laura Ashley handbag with a chain strap that I am thinking of bringing out this season.

 

Matchy Matchy Accessories

Dear Reader, I am so delighted about this mini trend because I have loved matching accessories since I was a teenager. There is nothing quite like them to really pull together the look of matching shoes and handbag.

Yes, dear Reader, I do miss-matched very happily as it enables me to use bags that it would be impossible to match the shoes.

If the handbag and shoes do not actually match – I make sure the colours are very close. Browns can vary a lot and I often get round this by wearing black shoes with a tan or brown handbag to avoid a really glaring mismatch.

Red Shoes and Handbags

This is a favourite combination that I love t wear. My personal choice is to wear them with grey, but I do pair them with blue and black too.  Reds can be very tricky to match.  What do you think? I go to where the natural light is best in my home and have a good look at the tones!

They always give a lovely shot of colour and there is something about red shoes … The Dorothy effect, I think!

 

Jewellery

HB features jewellery each season which I find interesting and helpful. I will be bringing into my outfits rich jewel colours – emerald, sapphire blue, ruby red and rich berry tones with gold.  These are lovely autumn hues that bring luxurious colour in to an outfit.

Silk

I will be working this mini trend with silk scarves and silky camisoles worn under tailored jackets. The boudoir dressing wit chemises dresses from the S/S is continuing into the autumn.

Pearls

Of course, dear Reader, I could never ignore the trend for pearls – I will be choosing pearl brooches to embellish bags and jackets and wearing pearls as much as possible.

Pearl embellishment is very to the fore this season.   I will be sporting pearls at every opportunity and feeling very happy in them.  Will you wear pearls this A/W?

 

Well I hope dear Reader you have enjoyed this quick round up and can get on with planning marvellous outfits for the coming A/W2016 season

 

I will cover beauty trends on another post soon. Certainly this post has helped me to feel rather excited about A/W2016.  Yes dear reader it is sad to say goodbye to lovely summery outfits.  However, it will be fun to wear vintage and be able to “nod to high fashion too!

 

There is very little faux fur this year. I do wear Vintage fur and faux fur collars and also leopard print is not prevalent at all. I will still wear leopard print with red and black and taupe, because I like it.  I also think of Marilyn, Monroe in “Gentlemen Prefer Blonds” and Wendy Hiller in “I know where I’m going”- 2 of my all time favourite films.  How about you dear Reader? 

Do share your thoughts in the comments!

 

 

A big thank you to Glenn for taking the photographs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Summer Styling – Jade Green and Taupe to Celebrate a Special Birthday

Summer Styling – Jade Green and Taupe to Celebrate a Special Birthday

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Hello!  Welcome to Gloriously Vintage, I hope you are, like me, making the most of the remaining weeks of the summer!  It a season that is all too brief and passes by so quickly in the UK.  One of the best things about it for me is not needing a jacket or a coat.  I adore jackets and coats and love to wear them, but it is a luxury to be in temperatures where they are not needed.

 

What do you think?  Do you feel like this about the summertime?

 

It feels great to just be ready to go out in a dress or separates.  Scarves really come into their own as they can add so much to the finished look.  Wearing lighter fabrics and brighter colours make Summer Styling completely different to the A/W styling.  As we move towards September and the evenings are getting a little shorter I am starting to feel that I must make as many opportunities as possible to enjoy my summer wardrobe.  It is in September, rather driven by the weather  – but usually mid September that I work on the Big Seasonal Changeover again, only this time it is white shoes that are sadly going to be put away, rather than as before, brought out with such anticipation.

 

I want to share with you the outfit I wore for my Mothers 92nd Birthday Family party which was held at our favourite hotel The Stratford, in Stratford upon Avon.

 

This was a very happy occasion and called for a bit of sparkle!  I particularly like to wear Aurora borealis jewellery when I am going out in the evening for a dinner party like this.

My mother has lived a long life and I personally feel that every birthday after 90 years old is a great achievement and should be treated as a special celebration.

 

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Mummy enjoyed opening her presents, here she is with her perfume,  Kenzo, Flower

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I was delighted when she said that she had enjoyed this year’s Birthday as much as her 90th, for which she had a bigger party for family and friends.

 

My two children joined us for this Birthday meal and getting together with them is always very special for her.

 

Styling the Outfit

Scarf

To begin with I was not sure what to wear for this occasion.  I checked in my Style Book to see what I wore last year and did not want to appear in the same outfit again.  When you keep your clothes for s long time this can happen sometimes – though the style book is a great help here!

I wanted to have my anniversary scarf somewhere in the outfit – last year it was a main feature – it is lovely to wear in August.  So I decided to tie it onto my everything bag.

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Dear Reader this worked very well with this scarf.  The scarf is a large square and is very fine silk.  I used a bias fold leaving the scarf quite wide for a floppy bow.  Pulling the loops of the bow out helped to stop the silk from slipping and falling off.

The bow came out into a good shape first go which was a great help!  Sometimes four or five attempts are required to get the finished bow that I am happy with.  The colours in the scarf are so summery.

 

Jewellery

My next thought was the jewellery that I wanted to wear.  I wore the turquoise “set” last year so settled on the Aurora borealis set for 2016.  I have a number of earings in the set

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The ones I chose were the little flower shaped ones because I love them with the brooch.  The shape of the stones complements each other even if they do not match.

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Some vintage clip earings are definitely “handed” and are better when worn in a particular way.  These are not strictly handed but I always wear them this way round.

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Having tried them on both ways I settled on the small stone at the top of the design pointing towards my face.  This looks best on me.  Do you have earings that have to be sorted out like this?  Simple round and oval designs do not matter which way round you style them.

Trying them on the two ways is the answer – the way that suits you best will be very clear.  You will know straight away!

 

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This 2 row necklace is a comfortable length.  It sits well in this V – neck and compliments the brooch on the shoulder.

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This is one of my favourite bracelets because it is part of the set I have chosen.

 

Separates and Shoes

Out of all my summer skirts the taupe one is my favourite.  I have had it for 17 years and it goes with everything.  So I opted for that one and then puzzled over the top to wear.  I have tops that will take a brooch pinned on and others that are unsuitable to have holes made in them.  That narrowed the choice a little.

The deciding factor was the shoes.

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I refer to the shoes in this outfit as my party shoes as they have been to some amazing events and made me feel wonderful every time.  I feel a close association with the lovely times that I feel so strongly when they are on my feet!

Not bad for a pair of shoes to give so much?  Do tell me about your favourite shoes!

 

This top is jade/emerald green depending n the other elements of the outfit.  Here it is more jade coloured.  In the A/W it can look more emerald worn with emerald green tones.

 

Handbag

I actually had two handbags.  You know I love my bags and often have a clutch and an everything bag.  My everything bag that I bought last year from Oxfam for the family wedding I went to last August has been a most useful bag.  It cost £6 and is actually a giveaway bag from Lancôme.  The cream sparkly bag with gold handles has been my go-to summer everything bag especially when I style a clutch bag with my outfit.

The bag I chose for this outfit is my “Malta clutch”.  It has this name because Glenn bought it for me in Malta about four years ago.

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Here is my “Malta Clutch” bag – worn in this photograph with the taupe skirt and a cream top

It came from Accessorize.  I had felt sad before that holiday as that bag had sold out on the UK website and I had missed the chance to buy it.  Visiting Valetta there is an Accessorize there.  I could not believe my eyes when I saw it.  Originally it has a large tassel attached that rather tied it to a specific colour.

My jeweller kindly removed it and fitted a lobster clasp to make it an optional extra.  They also put lobster clasps on either end of the chain handle – again making it easier to use.

This bag is a delight because it goes with so many colours –

Pink

Coral

Jade green

Cream

I always take this bag on holiday to use in the evenings.  It matches many items from my summer wardrobe.

 

Dear Reader, it does feel good when you find a bag that goes with a lot of outfits.  I am sure you have bags that do this.  They are such a good find.

My bag is forever my “Malta clutch” and is lovely reminder of that holiday and being on holiday.  A feeling that greatly adds to the pleasure of wearing it.

You may be thinking –

What does she put in the everything bag?

Well it is a mixture of useful things.  ~in the summer months I carry a cream lace fan to cool myself in hot moments.  The camera is usually in there too.  I carry tissues and hand wipes and napchains and damask napkins in a small zipped pouch, our sunglasses and a pair of ballet flats to change into if there is any walking to do and my heels are too high!  I also can put my wrap into it until I want to use it.  All this would never fit into a small clutch and I am not Mary Poppins with a bottomless bag that holds all manner of things!

 

Napchains

We have a family tradition that makes us all laugh – we use napchains to keep our napkins covering the front and the lap.

What is a napchain I hear you say, dear Reader!  It is a chain with a small clip on each end.  You can attach it to a napkin either along a straight side or on a corner.  The chain goes over your head and keeps the napkin in place.

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Here I am waiting for my dinner wearing my napchain and napkin!

I originally got these for the 5 of us to use for Christmas 2012 to protect my mother’s clothes from spills as she is partially sighted.

 

Rather than single her out with one I decided we would all have one.  However, I found it so helpful as I often wear scarves that now Glenn and I always use then when eating out and take our own damask napkins too.  Sometimes I am asked where I got them from! (I bought them on Amazon)

 

They are now always used when the family gets together for Birthdays and Christmas and have become a tradition.  A celebration meal is incomplete without napchains!

 

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Outfit Details

 

 Jade green and gold peep toe platform heels   Dorothy Perkins a few years ago

Viyella taupe pleated skirt    Bought at a Dress Agency in 1999 (no longer trading)

V neck top with bracelet length sleeves   Marks and Spencer

Fabric clutch from Accessorize in Malta!

Cream and gold bag    Oxfam on Line

Large square silk scarf from Accessorize tied onto bag

Cream wrap   Marks and Spencer some years ago

American 1950’s Aurora borealis brooch

2 Row necklace of Aurora borealis beads

1950’s Aurora borealis clip on Earings

Pearl and Aurora borealis spiral Bracelet

 

Lipstick Blend

 

Bobbi Brown Red Lip Pencil + Revlon Red + MAC Lady Danger + Revlon HD Lipstick in Poppy

 

 

 Thank you for joining me today on Gloriously Vintage.  I hope I will be as spry as my mother when I am 92 years old!  Do get in touch –  it is great to hear from you – say hello in the comments!

A big thank you to Glenn for taking all the photographs.

 

 

Summer Styling – Coral, Cream and Turquoise

Summer Styling – Coral, Cream and Turquoise

Whew!  We have had the hottest day, well over 32C, in July ever in the UK in the last week.  Summer has finally got going.  The temperatures have dropped back to more comfortable levels this weekend, 25C, which has been great.  Hello , dear Reader, I hope you are having a good Summer.

 

Welcome today to this post on Summer Styling – Coral , Cream and Turquoise.  It has been a wonderful weekend with great treasure hunting at Antiques for Everyone at the NEC.  It was a very exciting day.  I will be posting about the treasures next week but wanted to share the outfit I wore last Saturday.

 

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Wearing my scarf in the “Elizabeth Drape”!

I am really thrilled with this outfit because I have created a new pairing and it has worked well and received many compliments at Antiques for Everyone!

 

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I started the styling for Saturday with the scarf.  This is a graphic print, large whisper fine silk scarf from Accessorize.  I call it my “Anniversary Scarf” because Glenn bought it for me in Stratford upon Avon last year for our 14th Wedding Anniversary.  The scarf has many lovely colours including coral, cream and turquoise.

 

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I wore it last summer with my taupe skirt and a cream jumper to highlight the lovely colours in the scarf.  Cream or jade peep toe shoes which made the greens pop out in the scarf worked well.  The turquoise jewellery “set” complimented the colours too – so that was the outfit I recorded in my Style Book that took me to a number of events last year.  It is one of my favourites from my S/S collection.

 

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This is the beautiful scarf that adorned my handbag for the Summer Family Wedding I attended almost a year ago in August 2015.

The main problem I had with my styling was the shoes I usually wore are not for walking any distance in!  So I had the scarf and the turquoise jewellery set planned for Saturday.

A decision had to be made about a skirt.

 

The handbag needed to be a framed one, not a clutch, which would be easier to carry round all the wonderful exhibits on show.

 

Turquoise and gold bracelet

 

The next problem was the Celtic knot bracelet which is brass, needed cleaning and I did not have time to clean it for Saturday as last week was very busy and hot!  I usually clean it with a lemon juice and salt paste, gently rinsed off and polished with a soft cotton cloth – which brings the brass up to a shine!

 

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I decided to wear one of my recent treasures, a lovely Trifari bracelet with textured leaves that went with the textured gold on the brooch.

 

The coral skirt has finer pleats than some of my S/S skirts and is Glenn’s favourite, so I decided to pair the scarf with it.  The cream V-neck top will take a brooch and matches the cream handbag.  To walk around the Antiques Fair I wore cream flats but put on some heels for these photographs!

You are seeing the “Emie” pink court shoes a lot this summer.  When I bought them I did not expect them to go with so many combinations.  They have proved to be a versatile colour that I am often wearing instead of cream to go with the handbag featured in this outfit.

 

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The glass stones on the brooch are called “baby teeth” as the

shape does resemble baby’s teeth!

This brooch can be converted into a pendant.  Do you wear turquoise?  It is a colour that always makes me feel happy and uplifted and puts a spring in my step!

 

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The turquoise earings were bought with the brooch from Sutton Vintage and Arts Fair.  I usually wear them together.

 

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Outfit Details

 

“Emie” Pointed Court Shoes   Dorothy Perkins

Viyella Pleated Skirt   Charity Shop

V-Necked Top   Marks and Spencers

Cream 1950’s Framed Handbag   Sutton Vintage and Arts Fair

Large Graphic Printed Silk Scarf   Accessorize

Turquoise Brooch

2 rows of Lotus Pearls

Turquoise Clip Earings

Trifari Bracelet

Napier Twist Pearl Bracelet

Ted Baker Sunglasses

 

 

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Lipstick  Blend

 

Bobbi Brown Lip Pencil in Red + Revlon Red + Bourjois 10 Rouge Buzz + Revlon HD Lipstick in Poppy

I wanted a warm coral lip that was redder than pure coral to go with this outfit.  When blending I check the tone as I blot the application, then go on layering until the shade I want is achieved.  This warm coral stayed on well during the afternoon.

 

Have you found a good coral lipstick?

 

A favourite is “Kiss Me Coral ” by Revlon which is sadly discontinued.  I have a little of mine left and use it sparingly!

 

 

 

I am having great fun preparing my next post on Gloriously Vintage regarding the wonderful Treasures found last Saturday and about the Exhibitors who are so interesting to visit.  There is always something to learn.

 

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Thank you for visiting Gloriously Vintage today.  Do chat in the comments and have a look at my new Books Page.  It is possible to leave a comment there too!  I am so looking forward to the next post – as I found a truly wonderful brooch!

 

A big thank you to Glenn for taking the photgraphs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rock that Signature Scarf

Rock that Signature Scarf

Hello!  Welcome to Gloriously Vintage, dear Reader, it is a great pleasure to be writing more thoughts about wearing a signature scarf.

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I took the plunge last Sunday and went out in a lovely soft yellow skirt and actually wore 2 scarves as I wanted to rock that signature scarf and show you these two very different scarves with this summery outfit.  It was warm enough to not need a jacket, but not very sunny!  At least I have worn my soft yellow skirt once this summer.

Collecting and wearing scarves, especially silk ones is a great passion for me.   In this post I want to share more thoughts about how a scarf can lift what you are wearing to express your personality and individual style.

 

Wearing vintage style allows for so much variation and scope to be very creative.

 

It has been a rather grey and dreary week weather-wise here in the UK- I am still waiting for the warm summer days and evenings!  We are promised some warmth next week, well dear Reader, the rest of July could be glorious!

 

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Outfit Details

 

White pointed court shoes   Next

1950’s White framed handbag   Diane Ashman

Viyella Soft Yellow Pleated skirt   Oxfam on Line

Soft White Square Necked Top   Kettlewell Colours

Large Square Silk Graphic Print scarf   Accessorize

Square Polyester Scarf (like heavy chiffon)   Sutton Vintage and Arts Fair, last year

2 Stretch Pearl Cuffs   Dorothy Perkins

2 Rows Lotus Pearls

Large Pearl Stud Earings

 

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Lipstick Blend:

Bobbi Brown Red lip Pencil + Revlon Red + Revlon HD Lipstick in Poppy

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This bright scarf has yellow and white in the pattern.  I originally bought it to go with this skirt as a first foray into wearing yellow and is part of my S/S scarf collection.  It is made of polyester and is like heavy chiffon.  It is un-named and has a machined hem.  The mix of colours attracted me.

The texture of this scarf makes it cling to the top and stay in place well, once positioned.  It is tied in my signature style, which I will call the Elizabeth Drape as it appears regularly here.

 

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This is a large, whisper fine graphic print silk scarf from Accessorize.  The yellow in the pattern attracted me as it would go well with my soft yellow skirt.

I am delighted to find that my post from April this year is the most read on Gloriously Vintage.  It is Make Wearing a Silk Scarf Your Signature.  What a marvellous feeling to come to the computer and find a comment from one of my Readers!  It is especially marvellous when they feel encouraged to wear scarves more and try out their own collection.

Dear Reader, you see me adding to my collection all the time as scarves are easy to store and give so much to each wearing.

 

Looking back to my April post I made this comment:

“They can finish an outfit better than other accessories”

The three reasons I think scarves can do this are:

  1. Expression of personality/individuality

  2. Quality and lift to an outfit

  3. Pleasure and confidence

What do you think?  I expect a scarf to meet these three reasons and more!

 

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I have referred to my particular style with a square scarf as the Elizabeth Drape because I have not found that way of tying a scarf in any books or on any websites.

 

A very important point when choosing the scarf to complete the outfit and to strengthen the signature look is to pick a top or jacket that either tones or is a contrast.

 

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You have seen me wearing a scarf on a plain jacket, but in some of the S/S outfits having a top that tones can make a lot of difference.

 

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In the chiffon style scarf there is white and yellow – the two key colours in the outfit.  In the large silk square scarf yellow is one of the colours and the background is white so the soft white top was a safe bet!

 

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Matching the colour of the top is just as important as how the scarf looks with a jacket.  I love S/S styling because often I do not need a jacket so I am only matching a top!  Here I am wearing a soft peach top to compliment the scarf.

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The soft peach also worked well with this Christian Dior scarf.  It does look great if you can remove your jacket and the scarf then looks amazing over the top you have chosen.  My trick if it cannot is to take off the jacket and the scarf and possibly tie the scarf to my handbag.  I have a couple of tops that are ruched at the front.  They are lovely tops but they just do not work with a scarf.

The two scarves featured with today’s summer outfit give very different looks.

 

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I love the darker scarf, but feel that the large square silk one is dressier.

 

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This is because of the quality silk brings to the total look and the size of it makes a more dramatic statement.

Silk can slip.  You can see from the photographs that the knot has moved.

 

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I tied and placed the second scarf without a mirror, just by “feel”.  I will adjust the scarf if I know it is one that slips and am prepared to put up with it because of the overall look.

 

On a jacket a silk scarf can stay in place because of the texture of the fabric – often true of A/W styling or in between season styling.

Do you have any tips for this?

 

My tip for a flat knot that slips out too loosely is to cross the ends and do one extra over in the first part of the tie.  I used to do this with my children’s shoelaces when they were small to stop the tie slipping undone.  I do this with a fine silk scarf and then go on to finish tying the flat knot as usual.  It stays tied securely and there is no need to worry about losing a scarf that is precious.

 

New Season Trend for A/W 2016 – Scarf handles for Handbags.

 

There is a new trend on its way for A/W16 that I read about in the August Edition of Vogue UK –  scarf handles for handbags.  This does not mean the handles wrapped with a scarf, it actually means the grab or shoulder strap is a scarf.

 

Dear Reader, I love a challenge and am now busy thinking hard about how I can adapt clutch bags with an optional chain handle to take a handle fashioned out of one or two scarves.  I may have mentioned that my jeweller had fitted lobster clasps to the chain handles to enable me to remove them, to take the bags on holiday with the heavy handles in my coat pocket – not in the case adding weight!

I am going to find out if rings can be fitted with lobster clasps so that a scarf may be tied on each side of the bag to the ring.  Watch this space for the results of this quest!  There is plenty of time from now until mid September when I want to wear this trend.  I will keep you up to date with my progress.

 

I love the whole idea of another way to rock that signature scarf!

Thank you for joining me on Gloriously Vintage – do chat in the comments and make my day .  In the last photograph I am sitting on “our ” bench in the walled garden – it is where we shared our first kiss, so is very special.

 

A big thank you to Glenn for taking the photographs for this post at Baddesley Clinton, a moated manor house run by the National Trust.

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Summer Styling – Why not start with a pair of White Shoes?

Summer Styling – Why not start with a pair of White Shoes?

Welcome to Gloriously Vintage today, dear Reader, I hope you are well and excited about the summer which is getting nearer.

 

As you know from the Big Seasonal changeover, I have only just brought out my white shoes and accessories to begin my summer styling. So dear Reader, I was certain that I was wearing the white shoes, white handbag and gloves last Saturday, but had not got much further with styling the rest of the outfit!

My white shoes are stilettos and make me feel wonderful when I wear them.  I adore heels and these give a summery lift to whatever I wear with them.

White shoes seem to be coming back into fashion after some years being decidedly out of fashion, for about 10 years, due to the “Essex Girl” effect of fake tan legs and white stilettos!  I take no notice of all this and wear what I want to!  For me, white shoes are a major part of the summer months, and always have been.

 

What do you think?  Are you a fan of white shoes?

Do you have a favourite pair?

 

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This is a new outfit from my summer wardrobe for this year, wearing colours that are a change for me, as I spend a lot of time in red, coral and neutrals.  Last Saturday I was going to my Hairdresser to work on my summer hair colour and styled this outfit. The lipstick is a blend:

 

Bobbi Brown lip pencil Red + Revlon Red + Bobbi Brown Parisian Red

 

Using the white shoes and handbag as an “Outline”; I filled in the colour with this skirt and jacket.  I bought the skirt from Oxfam earlier in the year in anticipation of S/S.

The skirt is by Country Casuals and is fine summer weight and has sheen on the fabric that makes it dressier.  It moves well and is navy blue with green polka dots all over.

This blue jacket is by Eastex.  It was bought new for Glenn’s mother to wear with a pretty dress for our wedding in 2001.  It was much longer then, about 4 inches in fact.  I have inherited it and worn it with a navy blue and white polka dot dress for a few years.  Sadly, there is more of me now and I do not fit into the dress and the jacket was too long to go with any of my other separates.

 

Last year dear Reader, I decided to go and see my dressmaker to have the blue jacket made shorter to give it a new lease of life.

 

It is polyester, so is S/S but because if the colour and style it goes with my in-between season clothes too.  She shortened it by about four inches.  This worked because of the button spacing.  The shorter jacket can now work with a number of outfits.  I am so pleased with the result.  Have you had any alteration successes?  There will be more of this blue jacket in future posts.

I decided to go with more contrast with the white shoes and accessories for this outfit, but it would look good with navy blue shoes and handbag as well, although more formal, I think.

I then picked out this lovely silk scarf.  It is a super large square with some great colours on a near white background.  I bought it at an Antiques Fair held at the Chateaux Impney Hotel in Worcestershire.

 

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When I go to the hairdressers I always take off my jewellery and put it into my handbag until the hair is finished, to protect it from all the styling products.  So I chose jewellery that would be entirely manageable there.

 

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You can see the lovely round Monet brooch on the shoulder.  I love this brooch and wear it a lot because it is set with pearls and a small diamante.  The earrings are unmarked and are gold tone and pearl clips.  The shape of the earings really goes with the brooch so they make a “set” for me.

 

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You can see here, the pearl cuffs.  They are stretchy and take off quickly.  I often go to the hairdressers in them because I can take them off so easily.  Dear Reader, do you do this, take off jewellery at the hairdressers?  I started doing it when I was wearing a more vintage style, really to save the jewellery from harm.

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This dear white bag came from Diane Ashman at Antiques for Everyone a couple of years ago.  It is one of my favourite bags because of the size and the balance.  It just feels very comfortable on my arm.

 

These gloves are off white and match well, much as I like to wear gloves; I also like to carry them with my bag!  Do you do this?

 

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I am excited about this hair colour as I am going lighter for the summer.  My blond is more ash blond here and I have extended my blond highlights down the back of the hair to the nape, making the shade look much lighter overall.  I have a new hair product that is a rinse to add to the permanent colour that lasts for 3 shampoos.  There are two colours I am using an ash blond and a more golden blond.  This means I can boost my colour either way through the 10 weeks until my next appointment.

 

What I do with my hair is just as important to me as my big Seasonal Changeover.  Do you change your hair a little for the summer?

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My husband took me out to dinner in the evening and I wanted to look a little more dressed up so I wore these earings and put the brooch on the shoulder of my top, so that when I took the jacket off the demi parure could work its magic!

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The colours of the jewellery toned with the scarf very well!  So that is recorded in the Style Book so that I do not forget the pairing!

 

I would love to hear about your favourite outfits with white shoes.  Do chat in the comments or on my Facebook page.  I am looking forward to the next weekend as it is Glenn’s Birthday and Father’s Day – am busy planning some more outfits and having a great time with the styling!  I am looking forward to showing them to you soon on Gloriously Vintage!

Thank you to Glenn for taking these photographs.

Tales from the Dressing Table – Blending Lipsticks

Tales from the Dressing Table – Blending Lipsticks

Hello and welcome to Gloriously Vintage, today dear Reader, I am sharing with you one of my pleasures in wearing makeup – Blending Lipsticks.

 

 

What do I mean by Blending Lipsticks?

There are a number of ways to blend lipsticks.  Here are three ways; some are more successful than others!

You can actually mix lipsticks together, thus creating a new colour, in a small pot.  I have tried this with the last bit of a couple of lipsticks, in the past.  It is hard to get a good colour because the outcome is practically unknown.  There is a risk you will end up with a sludgy mess!  It was not successful.  I do not do this now.

You can actually mix colours on the lips using a lip brush.  This can be very successful and allows for very interesting effects.  Using darker shades at the outer edges and outline, blending to lighter shades on the centre on the bottom and top lip, it is possible to make lips look fuller and really gorgeous.  It takes time and practice and is often referred to as advanced lipstick application in beauty books.  I do this for very special evening events.

 

 

In this post, I am sharing with you dear Reader, blending lipsticks by layering lip colour from lip pencil and lipsticks to create new colours that come very close to matching elements of your outfit.

 

I love to do this to find a match with a scarf, handbag or a piece of jewellery.

 

The principles work with all shades of lipstick.

 

I will be illustrating them here with shades of red and coral.

 

 

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In the photograph above I am wearing a lipstick blend.  It is made up of:

Lip Pencil + Base Colour +Additional Colours =  NEW (Desired) SHADE

Bobbi Brown Sangria lip pencil + Revlon Red + Max Factor Chilli + Revlon Candy Apple =

A colour that matches the colours in the scarf very well.

 

 

Why Blend Lipsticks?

Well my answer to that question is twofold.  Firstly it is fun to blend two or more lipstick colours together to create new shades that are unique.  Blending lipsticks together extends the range of the single colours and the results are extremely satisfying because of how they look and wear.  Secondly, dear Reader, if you have a colour or tone in a scarf, handbag or outfit it is fun to blend lipsticks together to get as near a match as you possibly can.  This gives a level of elegance that is not difficult to achieve.  You can then get the blusher, nail varnish and the rest of your makeup to be perfectly in tune with the total look you are creating.

Matching lip colour to tones in accessories is something we see sometimes on the Red carpet at the BAFTA Awards, Golden Globe Awards or the Oscars.  I particularly remember Angelina Jolie Pitt wearing an elegant full length gown that was very simple, carrying a red clutch bag matched perfectly to her lipstick.  This was very striking and memorable.

 

My husband often says to me, “Your lipstick looks amazing”.  I usually reply, “It’s a blend!”

 

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 In this photograph you saw on my last post I am wearing a lipstick blend.  It is made up of:

Bobbi Brown sangria lip pencil + Revlon Red +Max Factor Mulberry =

A lipstick that complimented my party dress and would be unique at the event

Shriener earings and brooch

Looking very happy on my 60th Birthday, wearing a blend to match the Schreiner Demi Parure!

Bobbi Brown Lip Pencil Red + Revlon Red +Dior 999 =  A very bright, warm red that tones well with the jewellery and the scarf I am wearing.

 

 

If you are wearing vintage style clothes why not go a step further and really work on the lipstick to complete your look?

Sometimes it is possible to blend a red lipstick that is just the right shade, texture and finish so that your finished look is simply incredible.  The blending principles I am discussing here can be used with all colours to get the tone required.  I am illustrating this post with shades of red because love lipstick, especially red tones.  Blending is what I do most days. In A/W my reds are a warm red/wine base colour and moving to berry and purple, mauve tones.  I also love to blend russet, chilli tones into my red in the A/W.  At the time of writing it is May and S/S is here!  So dear Reader, let’s take a look at reds and corals to be ready for S/S!

 

 

What do you need to get started?

You need:

  1. Two or more lipsticks that you like and really know the colour. Think – is it bright, flat, pinky, bluey, does it suit me?  Does it make me happy to wear it?

  2. Lip pencils in a number of tones. When you are young lip pencils just sort out the outline of your lips, over 40 years old I think it is important to outline and full in the lips to give an excellent base to then fill in with lipstick.

  3. Good Quality quilted toilet paper for blotting. I have tried tissues, cotton handkerchiefs, blotting papers; you name it and have found this to be the best.  The quilted toilet paper sheets will take 3 or 4 blots and do not separate on the lips.

  4. A good moisturizing routine to keep your lips and the skin around your mouth well moisturized.

  5. A face flannel for exfoliating the lips regularly. I use a clean face flannel everyday to wash my face in the morning.  Then I like to use cleanser, toner and moisturiser at night with cotton makeup remover pads.  If your lips are kept well moisturised and you are following a good routine, they will look great.

 

It is worth following a disciplined skin care routine for life.  If you do not do this – start now.  I have cared for my skin religiously over my life and am keeping deep wrinkles at bay, for the moment!

 

How to get a great result

Here is my step by step guide to a great blend:

  1. Preparation of the lips is vital. Moisturise lips and then wipe away the moisturiser.

  2. I like to put a thin layer of foundation onto my lips to start.

  3. Follow this with a little powder to create a matte surface

  4. Outline lips with your chosen coloured lip pencil

  5. Fill in the outline with lip pencil.

  6. Apply the base colour.

  7. Blot on quilted toilet paper, 3 times. You will see the strong colour in the first blotting.

  8. Apply again and blot 3 times

  9. Apply another colour that will take the base colour up or down in brightness or toward coral or red. Blot again at least twice.

  10. Go on layering colours until the desired match is achieved. Blot each application at least once or twice.  Four layers, each blotted should stay on well.

  11. Use the blotting on the sheet to match with the outfit , scarf or even jewellery.

  12. Try on the finished outfit with your blend; enjoy the result – a truly individual look that is specific to that outfit. The perfect finishing touch!

Your new shades

When you practice the above is possible to create formulas or codes to enable you to collect blends that really work for you.

 

Lip Pencil + Base Colour+ Additional Colour(s) =

NEW SHADE

When blending it is very important choose a base colour.  This is the colour you apply first.

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It can be a favourite you know looks great on its own, mine is Revlon Red.  It is a staple colour and has been available for many years.  It is a red with warm tones.

Find out if you suit reds with a blue tone or a more tomato tone.  I suit the warmer reds.  Bluey ones do nothing for me at all.  Search and try out testers in shops – go outside and look at the colours in natural light.

 

Texture and Finish

It interests me greatly how the texture of lipstick goes in and out of fashion.  Now I am older I follow the beauty pages of both Vogue and Harpers Bazaar.  I love to see how the lipstick textures are going to play out each season.  Sometimes it is matte or satin finish and of course glossy lips dip in and out of fashion.  These fashions can determine what colours and types of lipstick are available to buy.  Dita Von Teese advocates stocking up on your favourites.  The most annoying thing is when marvellous colours are discontinued and are unavailable.

Last year I bought 2 Revlon HD lipsticks in Poppy and Gladiolus.  I wore them in blends all summer and had great fun with them.  Thankfully they and still available and I am just now buying them again for this year!

 

Season by Season

Once you master this blending principle, there is nothing to stop you making many, many tones from your lipstick collection.  Why should you restrict yourself?  Blotting and layering the colour makes lipstick stay on to eat and drink and to just last well through the day.

I wear a uniform to work.  So every day I practice my blends when I do not have to match anything in particular.  I try out blends and assess how they have stayed on during the morning or afternoon.  I am using that work time to prepare great lipstick looks for the outfits I am planning to wear at the weekend or to attend a special party or event.

Some Lipsticks stay on better than others due to the amount of pigment in them.  Max Factor are excellent, L’Oreal Reds are lovely , I like Blake’s and Eva’s.

This summer I am also using Dior 999 and Bobbi Brown Parisian Red.  I will enjoy them on their own but will also be experimenting with some amazing blends!

 

Here are some examples of my favourite blends:

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If I want a good warm coral I turn to:

Bobbi Brown Lip Pencil in Red + Revlon Red + Bourjois 10 Rouge Buzz

 

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This is one of my absolute favourite summer blends!  I wear this many times because it is bright, strong and a warm summer red that stands out well with a lot of my clothes.

Bobbi Brown Lip Pencil Red + Revlon Red + Revlon  HD Gladiolus

 

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For a bright summer blend that comes out slightly more red than the one above I use:

Bobbi Brown Lip Pencil Red + Revlon Red + Bourjois 13 Jet Set

 

 

Inspiration

You can find inspiration for your look in many places. Dear Reader, please talk to me and share some of your inspiration in the comments.  As I love lipstick and wearing it, mine starts with the classic Hollywood film stars.  I look at Marilyn Monroe, Jane Russell, June Alyson, Rita Hayworth, Doris Day, Cyd Charrise and Lauren Bacall to name a few.  They all looked so glamorous and beautiful.  On Facebook there are groups who share wonderful photos of these film stars.

Images in magazines are helpful as you can find looks you like.  It is possible to emulate this style and put your own personal twist on it.  When I was in my early 20’s I read the beauty pages of Vogue magazine avidly and copied some of the makeup looks, learning all the time what worked and certainly what definitely did not!.

I also find inspiration now in my jewellery and scarf collections.  Can I blend a lipstick to match or to tone really well?  I am also inspired by the colour of handbags.  I have a bright tomato red modern handbag that I always wear with a specific blend.  I have to say I feel marvellous when I wear it!

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Here I have used:

Bobbi Brown lip pencil in red + Revlon Red +MAC Lady Danger +Revlon HD Poppy = A good match to this handbag

 

 

Matching tones to a scarf will always produce a very “finished” and polished look.  If the scarf is near your face, it makes perfect sense to blend a lipstick to go with it.

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Here I have used:

Bobbi Brown Lip Pencil in Red + MAC Lady Danger + Revlon HD lipstick Poppy = A lovely bright colour to wear with my scarf!

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To go with this lovely silk scarf I blend:

Bobbi Brown Lip Pencil in Sangria + Revlon Red + Max Factor Mulberry =

A more purple tone that works for S/S because the Revlon Red base colour stops the Mulberry coming out too dark.  The Mulberry shade has little gold sparkles in it which adds an interesting finish.

 

 

A big thank you to Glenn for taking these photographs.

I hope you are thinking now about having a go at blending and creating your own blends to match your outfits.  Summer is ahead of us with plenty of opportunities to be out and about looking very glamourous. 

 

It’s been great to get together on Gloriously Vintage – drop by again soon!

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