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Make a Jacket Part of Your Signature Look

Make a Jacket Part of Your Signature Look

Dear Reader, welcome to Gloriously Vintage today. In the UK we are enjoying a great September, with the summery temperatures continuing into the month from August.  There is an autumnal nip in the early morning air and the evenings are cooler. We are moving into the time of year where a cool morning can give way to a warm afternoon.

 

Twice a year I do my Big Seasonal Changeover. I am not quite ready to do it as autumn officially starts on 22nd September.  It feels like an Indian Summer this year, which is lovely.  Once August is over I have a self imposed curfew on white shoes and handbags. I will still wear cream shoes and accessories but the adored white shoes of high summer are the first to be put away.  They are still in my wardrobe but very soon the largest white handbag will be exchanged for a large black patent one in the wardrobe space.  The shoes will have to wait now until next spring to be worn again.

 

Do you have a favourite garment you love to wear? Are you a dress or separates lover?

 

Well dear Reader, I love separates and suits.  Do chat in the comments about your best jackets!

It all stems from childhood as my “best outfits” when not in school uniform were suits.  My mother dressed me in matching skirt and jacket sets from about 5 -13 years old.  I had party dresses too, but the love of separates was rooted early on!

 

If pressed to choose I must say it is the jacket that is my all time favourite garment.

 

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In this photograph I am wearing my Gina Jacket.  It is a terracotta colour and was about £6 from Oxfam on line in the sale, about 3 years ago.  My dressmaker shortened the sleeves for me.  Here I am wearing it with a black pencil skirt, a lovely splashy bright scarf and pearls.

 

Why? Oh, dear Reader, jackets are versatile, can add texture and interest, work hard in the wardrobe and can take you from day to night with a change of accessories and jewellery.

 

You will see from my summer styling posts that it is not wearing a coat or a jacket that marks out the summer for me.  So once we hit September there is that glorious “in between seasons” time roughly mid September to mid October when the jacket comes into its own.

As cooler temperatures advance a Winter Coat can cover a jacket making snug layers. However when the suit or separates can be worn in all their glory – on view and accessorised perfectly – that is a golden point in the year.

 

If you really know your body shape, you can know the jacket style that works for you. Couple that with an awareness of cut and fit for different eras and you have an almost magic formula for elegance.

Why is a jacket so important? What makes it stand out?  How to wear it? How do you know when you have found the right one?  I will try you answer these questions using my personal style as an example.

 

Why is a jacket so important?

Here are some thoughts in answer to this question in no particular order or priority!

  • It can make or break an outfit
  • It must fit well and do what you want it to do
  • It will take a skirt/top combination up a number of gears
  • It will be a backdrop to display wonderful jewellery and scarves
  • Fur collars can change a jacket in A/W as no other accessory can.
  • If you can make it work as hard – match 3 or 4 skirts at least. I choose not to wear trousers for a dressed up look so I expect each jacket to match a minimum of 2 skirts and more if the choice has been expertly made!

What makes a jacket stand out?

To answer this question I have identified some key points to bear in mind when choosing one.

Cut and Fit

How long should the jacket be to suit your body shape? Does it nip in at the waist?  How long are the sleeves? For me, dear Reader, shorter lengths work well – about 24″ nape to hem.  I can wear 26″ and 22.5″ but; longer that 26″ is not so good on me.  Length makes all the difference to the outfit because of the proportion.

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This is a new purchase from Oxfam on line.  It is a Hobbs tailored jacket .  It is 68% wool and 32% Acrylic.  I loved the cut  immediately and the hounds tooth fabric.  It can be dressed up with different collars for the A/W – I am looing forward to making this jacket work hard in my wardrobe!

 

 

 

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The nipped in waist looks good with a straight skirt, but will also go with a pleated or fuller one.

 

The shoulder fit is vital.

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The shoulder looks good on this jacket.

Brush your hand down the opposite upper arm from the edge of the shoulder.  The shoulder of the jacket should be in line with your shoulder.  If it is too short then your shoulder fit is all wrong.  Equally, if the shoulder comes out too far past your natural body line the fit is not good.

 

Length

If I find a wonderful jacket in a great fabric that is too big I look and see if it can be refitted and shortened by my dressmaker. It is worth it as the finished jacket with be unique and of great quality. New jackets that are expertly tailored are beyond my budget.  I also hate to see other people in “my” jacket as can easily happen with new clothes.  So 23″ -24″ is a good length for me.

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This Eastex jacket was inherited from my mother in law.  My dressmaker took 4 inches off the length to remodel the jacket and give it a new lease of life!

 

 

When you are shopping for vintage it is so important to know your measurements and to be sure about the length that looks best on you.

 

Colour and Fabric

I love wool mixtures for in between seasons. Man made fabrics like polyester are great too but will have no warmth in them when the wind blows!  My man made jackets go away in early autumn.  The one or two I keep out for evenings are the first ones to go under a winter coat as the season progresses.  Colour and texture are the key to the success of the jacket.  Can you match tweed to jewellery?  Does the colour/texture compliment many of your scarves?  How does it sit with the skirt of your choice?  I love plain jacket/ patterned skirt combinations.  Plain jacket/skirt combinations take jewellery so well and complimentary patterns can work too.

 

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This is one of my “in between seasons” jackets.  I love the texture and colours in it.  In this photograph I am wearing it with a S/S look.  In the coming weeks I will be wearing it with a navy blue pencil skirt and navy court shoes and handbag.

 

If you look critically at the colour and texture of the fabric you can see the possibilities of the jacket working hard with pieces that are already in your wardrobe.

 

Collar

If you know the length that suits you, chances are you are very sure about the best style of collar. I love shawl collars.  They are soft and feminine and take scarves well.  Notched or revered collars are so smart.  It is very important to really understand whether one or two buttons and a deep V or a higher buttoning jacket suits you.  This depends on the fullness of the bust.  I am aiming at an hour glass figure and suit one or two buttons.  I have found some higher buttoning jackets to work too.

 

Buttons

Does the jacket have great buttons?

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This is another new purchase from Oxfam on line.  I have been watching this jacket on line for some time before buying it!   It is polyester, so now belongs in my S/S wardrobe.  I wanted a cream jacket to compliment most of my Summer skirts on cooler days.  The buttons are mother of pearl and have a slightly greenish tone in certain light.  The skirt in the photograph above looks great with this jacket because of the buttons.

 

It is possible to build up a collection of vintage buttons.  This is something I am doing now.   I try and buy some vintage buttons so can change then on jackets quite often to upgrade a look or to give faithful jacket a new look.  Buttons can be very tying.  A suit I bought in a charity shop had cream buttons on it.  I had them changed to a smoky grey and immediately the suit went with a lot of other tops and shoe /handbag combinations.

I buy jackets in charity shops for the buttons. The jacket will probably be too big or too long for me but will sport great buttons.  It can be cheaper to acquire buttons this way.  New buttons are expensive now and the quality does not compare to vintage buttons.

 

How to wear it?

Dear Reader the three ways I like to wear jacket are:

  1. Buttoned up
  2. Open
  3. Slung around the shoulders, like a cape.

Buttoned Up

Buttoned up is always more formal and smart.

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This jacket has an unusual style.  It almost has a peplum – you can see the split on the hip.  I like the way it adds interest to the side view, showing the skirt through the split.

If you make the jacket and skirt appear as “one” and treat it like a “dress” you can use accessories to powerful effect.  I love to wear at least one brooch or a group of smaller ones.  If I am going to a meeting and want to feel confident I choose a jacket that fits well on the shoulder and I wear it buttoned up.  The vital “first impression “is of elegance and power and can be very useful in some contexts.

I attend many meetings to do with the planning and organisation of Care for my elderly mother. It is always my objective to have the sartorial advantage, which silently reinforces the message that I mean business and will not settle for poor service or standards!

Open

An open jacket is more relaxed and can show off a lovely top underneath. It can work beautifully with brooches and scarves too.  Always try on the jacket open and look at the back view.  Some jackets look too baggy open.  Do think of this when you try on your outfit.  My grandmother always used to say to me that the back view was just as important as the front!

 

Around the Shoulders

Around the shoulders works well as long as it does not fall off! I use this way of wearing a jacket if I expect to take it off.  So going down to breakfast at an hotel, or going to the theatre for example.  Last A/W this was a popular way to wear coats and jackets loved by Victoria Beckham particularly.

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I am wearing this jacket round my shoulders, over my scarf and top.  A good fit on the shoulder helps the jacket to stay in place!

 

It is not so warm and is great for in between seasons. In winter I drape my winter coat around the shoulders if I have a light wool jacket and am getting into the car, for example.  It is fun to experiment and do some styling or trying on at home in front of a full length mirror.  Always check the back view.

Dear Reader, I use my landing as a dressing room at home with a full length mirror and hooks to prepare outfits I am going to wear and to air outfits before they are returned to the wardrobe.

 

How do you know when you have found the right one?

The answer to this question is dear Reader, the feeling of absolute delight when you put on a jacket that fits well on the shoulder, is the best length and just looks amazing on!

 

It is that moment when you say to yourself “Yes!  This works”! 

 

I plan my outfits for the whole of the Christmas period about 12 or more outfits – this involves going for as many “YES” moments as I possibly can.

 

 

The jacket that works hard in your wardrobe can be a powerful part of your signature look. Dear Reader, for me a plain black skirt can come into its own with a contrasting jacket and look different each time because of the accessories!  I think it is an easy way to extend the scope of the pieces in my wardrobe and I just adore adding fur collars or scarves, brooches of varying sizes and seeing the effect with various shoes and handbags.

 

Sometimes I have a styling session that is one skirt and jacket to see how adding different accessorises can push the outfit in many directions and find looks for different occasions! A styling session like this can confirm the jacket as part of your signature look.

 

Thank you to Glenn for taking the photographs of me in this post.

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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Trifari Treasures and a Gorgeous Red Hat

Trifari Treasures and a Gorgeous Red Hat

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Last Sunday dear Reader, we went to the Sutton Vintage and Arts Fair.  It was great fun and I found some vintage treasures to add to my collections.  I hope you have had a great week.  Here in the UK the rain kept off on Sunday and the day was warmer as the wind had dropped.  It was a relief as we have had so much rain last week.  When it rains I have to choose shoes that can take getting wet.

 

My choice of shoes often influences the whole outfit, do you find this too?

 

It is always a nostalgic experience going to this particular vintage fair because I am constantly seeing items that I remember from my childhood that were “new” then and are “vintage “now.

 

I think I could describe myself as gloriously vintage!

 

The treasures found were lovely, especially the Trifari Treasures.  As you know dear Reader, I love Trifari jewellery and collect it.  Finding new pieces is marvellous fun.  If I can find a piece to compliment a “set” that is good.  Occasionally I have found something that matches some pieces in the collection.

I do enjoy this Fair because I go regularly and am getting to know some of the vintage sellers and am always excited to meet new ones.  Parked outside Sutton Town Hall were these fabulous cars from Kiss Rides.

 

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Here is the ultimate in styling – a car to match my outfit!

 

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This mini is so sweet – I was a child when the first minis appeared.

 

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This made me think of a lovely picnic!  I would take a much bigger hamper!

 

 

The other main attraction last Saturday was the performance of one of my favourite girl groups

 

“The Glamophones”.

 

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They sing in the style of the Andrews Sisters and more recently The Puppini Sisters and I just love to watch them perform.

Live music is wonderful as it surrounds and involves you so much.  My feet were tapping and I so wanted to dance!  However British reserve and a lack of space stopped me!  It is my desire to have a party where the Glamophones entertain us.  A dream I want to make come true in this 60th decade.

There was a chance to buy a CD with some of The Glamophones songs and I bought a calendar of their photographs for the rest of the year.  They signed it for me! I have put it to good use recording my posts on Gloriously Vintage.  There was time between their sets to talk to the girls.

 

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They wore black dresses with white polka dots and black and white petticoats underneath.  The 1940’s-1950’s style was set off with victory rolls in their hair and lovely red lipstick.

It was marvellous.

 

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I went straight to Rob Caldwell to see if he had any Trifari jewellery.  I have bought from him before and have greatly enjoyed the pieces I have.  Sure enough I found two delightful bracelets a brooch and a demi parure I just fell in love with.

 

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The pearl and diamante brooch is an early Trifari possibly from the 1940’s.

When I see the jewellery in my mind’s eye I am working out how to wear each piece and thinking about the collection I have it will add to and what outfits it will go with.  Really this outfit planning is what I love to do.

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This 1930’s bracelet needs some TLC as the safety chain is broken but will match another “set” I have with the same pink stone.

 

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I bought this aqua clutch bag which is 1980’s does 1950’s.

 

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It has a detachable shoulder strap and is a great match with the skirt from Summer Styling.

 

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I will wear this bag with contrasting shoes and also where it can be matched to the colours in a scarf.  Accessories like this give a feature colour or a pop of brightness to a plainer outfit.

 

I could not resist this red handbag.

 

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I had this bag in taupe leather in the 1980’s and loved the simple shape.  Rounded bags are good because they add softer lines to a tailored suit or jacket.  This is a mix I love to experiment with.  Details like shape, curves, colour and size can make an enormous difference to the finished outfit.

Yes dear Reader, I found a scarf!

 

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It is silk and I will wear it in the A/W and enjoy the rich tones.

Let me show you the outfit I wore.

 

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Outfit Details

 

Red Court Shoes   Dorothy Perkins

Red Viyella Pleated Skirt   Charity shop

Cream V Neck jumper   Marks and Spencer

White 1950’s Handbag   Diane Ashman

Silk Square Scarf   Diane Ashman

Gloves   Charity shop

Pearl cuffs    Dorothy Perkins

3 Rows of Lotus Pearls

Red Demi Parure   Chronically Vintage Etsy Shop

 

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Lipstick Blend:

Red Bobbi Brown Pencil + Revlon Red+ Dior 999

 

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I love this demi parure from Jessica at the Chronically Vintage Etsy Shop.

It is the first time I have worn this jewellery and I am thrilled the earings were really comfortable and did not pinch!

 

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I love to match the shoes to the skirt in the summer particularly, but in the A/W too with grey, navy and black shoes.  Here I have red shoes that are a good match with the skirt.  I have tied the scarf onto the bag with a square knot.  The pearl cuffs extend the short gloves.  These heels are comfortable to walk around in.  Many of my beloved heels are “short walk” shoes!

 

Having seen Jessica on chronically vintage so often wearing amazing hats, I am bringing hats into my outfits more and love the way they pull an outfit together.  I am rather traditional in my style as I love sinamay or straw in the S/S and felt in the A/W.  This comes from many years of wearing a hat everyday as part of my school uniform.  We had large hats with a swept back, upturned brim in brown felt for the winter terms and the same shape in cream straw for the summer term.  These hats were worn on the back of the head and were referred to as “halos” as they produced a halo effect around the face.  They were very flattering and set a pattern of personal preference that has lasted all my life!

 

May I introduce you to the gorgeous red hat?

 

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Last Sunday I met Alice Mary Ball the designer and maker of this wonderful hat.  Do look at this link and see her work.  I was tempted to try on some of her hats.  They were mostly tilts and perchers to be worn on the front of the head.

 

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The felt ones were all lovely, but I chose this gorgeous red straw hat because I do not have that many S/S hats.  Yes dear Reader, it is an occasion hat, and I am going to enjoy it creating a number of glamorous outfits!

 

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I love the arrow turkey feather!

 

 

 

After a busy week, working hard, it is bliss to go to a Vintage Fair and revel in looking at the many varied items for sale and picking out some new treasures.

 

 

 Thank you for visiting Gloriously Vintage, do chat in the comments about your special finds, I would love to know about them!

 

Photographs taken by Glenn, thank you for all your help with this post.

 

Tales from the Dressing Table – A Great Vintage Hair Day

Tales from the Dressing Table – A Great Vintage Hair Day

Hello!  Welcome to Gloriously Vintage today, dear Reader, thank you for visiting.  It is a pleasure to bring you the third post from the series Tales from the Dressing Table.  It focuses on how I “do” my hair.

 

I hope you are going to find this post on a great vintage hair day worthy of note.  Having great hair is so important.  I am sure you will agree.  It can make you feel very well, confident and strong.  When your hair is right, looking first-rate, you are too!  So having a good hair day is really a big part of everyday life.  Having a great vintage hair day is marvellous and can make a huge difference to an outfit and how you feel wearing it.

 

Having an excellent relationship with your hairdresser, who you trust is extremely important.

 

My grandmother used to say to me that you could wear a sack and look great if your hair and makeup were done well.  What do you think?  I have to agree with her.  It is a principle I have adhered to all my adult life, making sure my hair always looked well groomed and if wearing makeup, it suited me and looked “right”.

We all have interesting hair histories.  The transition from childhood hair, to teenage style, to young adult can be the back drop to many great memories and stories.  Throughout my life I have had a number of different hairstyles and hair colours before arriving at the Vintage hairstyle I have today.  You have seen the hairstyle I have now in the photographs on Gloriously Vintage.

This vintage hairstyle I wear now has developed over a number of years.  Here are some of my past hairstyles going back to just before I was 50 years old.

 

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2005 – My hair is auburn red and I was using hair straighteners!  I coloured it myself using a blend of five colours to cover grey and pepper and salt!

 

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2007- My hair is professionally coloured here, with a lot less curl!

 

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2008 – My hair is longer and getting closer to a vintage, Marilyn Monroe inspired style.

 

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2009 – My hair is much longer and is styled using ceramic Velcro rollers.

 

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2011 – My hair is styled here on Velcro rollers.

 

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Christmas 2014 – I am using plastic rollers and the salon hood hairdryer.

 

2016

February 2016 when I started being a blogger and writing posts on Gloriously Vintage.

 

I cannot help noticing that my skin has improved greatly in the two latest photographs.  I will be writing about my skin care regimen in future posts from Tales from the Dressing Table.

 

I now have a style that can be managed at home and comes out consistently every time it is done.  This enables me to have a signature look that is a major part of the success of what I choose to wear.  It can be tweaked by changing the colour and shape and also by adding hair accessories for the evenings and special occasions.  I have been working on a signature look that is unique and memorable and that is an integral part of the finished outfit and vintage style looks that I love to put together.

 

Having considered what it is about vintage style I love, it is the mixing up of old and new, expensive and inexpensive to create something unique that is at the heart of my passion.  I feel ideas for another post coming on…!

 

I hope you will feel that it is possible to experiment with your hair and get a great result.  It is important to have a clear picture in your mind of the outcome you desire.  For me, dear Reader it started with me having a spiky straightened hairstyle that I wanted to change into something softer.  My hair is naturally curly and rather coarse; it is very thick and has a tendency to go its own way if I am not careful.  So I started to embrace my curls and stop fighting them.

At first I rollered the top and diffused the back giving a softer curly style that my hairdresser cut to a round shape.  Marilyn Monroe was always my style icon here.  This really got going after turning 50 years old and going blond from auburn red.  I then graduated to using ceramic rollers that did not require pins.  These Velcro rollers will stay in the hair and give a “set”, but will not give tight curls.

 

The tools and products I use to create my hairstyle have influenced it greatly and had a strong effect on the styling result.

 

 

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My lady Schick console hairdryer that I used as a teenager and kept it, to return to it again in later life!

 

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The Babyliss hood hairdryer I went onto when the lady Schick stopped working.

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Here is my Orlando hood dryer that I was able to purchase from my hairdresser, a couple of years ago.  This hairdryer has made an enormous difference to the finished style today.  It has adjustable heat and also a cold setting.  It is good to always finish with 15 minutes of cold before taking out the rollers.  This really sets the style.  Hair must be completely dry as the style will not hold unless it is.

 

Combs and brushes also are very important to the finished style.

 

Over my life I have always bought combs and brushes from my hairdresser to enable me to manage the styling at home.  You can understand dear Reader, that I have a collection that can certainly tell my hair story!  The ones I use now are all essential and each one plays a part in the hairstyle at the different stages from shampoo to finally dressed and finished.

 

Dear Reader, let us get on with how I do my hair now.  So clear the dressing table and have a look at products.

 

 

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I move away my make up brushes and the tray is ready for the rollers and pins!  I also wear old glasses that I can still see through, that cope with styling products and hairspray!

 

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This is the shampoo I use; it is from my hairdresser and is a protein shampoo.  It suits my hair very well.  The conditioner is a treatment by L’Oreal and I leave it on a minimum of 10 minutes and sometimes longer.

 

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Here are the setting products I use.  I put 3 drops of the Redken smooth down into a blob off L’Oreal spiral splendour and apply all over.  Then I use a generous amount of mouse all over, making sure the front has an even application.  It is all combed through.

 

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The top comb is used to part the hair and comb it using the wide teeth.  The Middle one is also of use at this stage.  I use the pin tail comb to section the hair for each roller.

 

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I have a large hairdressing mirror with a handle at each end that I use for checking the back and sides.  My front curl is over to the left, so I have a parting on the right.  I then part the hair from ear to ear over the top of my head.  The right side is combed forward from the over the top parting to form the first section.  It is clipped and the rest of the hair in that side is combed back and clipped back out of the way.  The hair for the front section is combed forward and a low parting set on the left.  The front section is clipped and the rest of the hair is combed back out of the way and clipped in place.  The left section is combed forward and clipped and the rest is combed back and clipped back as was the right side.

 

Now for the rollers!

 

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On each side I put a pink curled under, and two yellows.  I always start on the left as I am left handed!  When the two sides are done the front section remains clipped so I can reach the top more easily.  I do not put the front into rollers until the top crown area is all in rollers.

 

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Here is a photograph of the left side of the head of rollers.  The direction of the curl on the rollers is important.  I curl the whole crown under.  The white and pink are curled under.  The yellow and blue are curled over.  This is so I can have curls turning up at the back blending into the crown.

After the sides I put in the guide rollers that go down the centre of the back.  The pattern is easy for me to remember and has been born from a lot of trial and error, dear Reader!  From the top of the head going back – 2 large purple, I white I pink all under.  Then 3 yellow curled over.

 

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As you work down the back of the head, it is possible to measure withthe yellow rollers how many will fit into your nape – usually 4 or 5 rollers depending on the space and the size of the rollers.  I do the same to each side.

 

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Here is the right side.  You can see I can fit 2 rollers side by side in the space between the guide rollers and the sides.  This is all part of putting the rollers in largely by feel and checking the back and sides every 2 or 3 rollers to make sure they are even.

 

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Here I am checking the back!  The yellow and small blue are all curled over.  The smallest rollers go at the bottom for the tightest curls and where the hair is shortest.

 

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More checking!

 

Once the crown is all in rollers I do the front section and finish with 3 rows of yellow and 2 of blue in the nape.

 

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The front rollers are at right angles to the hairline and are curled under.  I use 3 large purple and 1 medium white.  The white roller is next to the parting.

 

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With the parting and sectioning and working round the head it takes 20-30 minutes to put the rollers in.  My hair is cut and coloured about every 10-12 weeks, so it takes a bit longer when I am coming up to a hair appointment!

Well, there we are dear Reader, a whole head full of rollers!  Now I go and sit under the dryer for 1 hour of hot air and 15 minutes of cold.  I now write blog posts during this time and it passes very quickly!

I will spray the rollers with hairspray once or twice during the drying time, which helps the “set”.

Then take out the rollers, leaving the front section rollers in.

 

 

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I then begin dressing the hair to the finished style.  Starting at the back I run my fingers through the curled hair, upwards, using the L’Oreal Techni Art 4 sprayed on my hands.

 

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I will then backcomb the crown and finish the dressing, checking the back with my mirror.  Only then do I take out the front rollers, back comb the section and bring the finished style together.  I do this to prevent the front from flopping as it waits to be dressed.

 

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These are the combs I use for backcombing.  The different width of the teeth produce different volume and staying power.

 

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These are the most recent acquisitions.  They are made in Japan.  The top one is used for the top and front section backcombing and are fantastic.

 

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The grey lifting comb is invaluable as I used it in the finishing of the style and also in the brushing up every day.  The pink brush is for brushing out rollers.  I use it rather sparingly in the initial dressing , but use it daily in the brushing up to tidy and recreate the style each day.

 

Brushing out

The details of the pink brush.

 

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I can sort out the curls and make sure there are no gaps and dips.

 

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These combs are used for the final tweaking and checking, dear Reader, before the style is finished, ready for the hairspray.

 

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You may be wondering what this blusher brush is here for!

I spray the finished style with hairspray because this affects how the hair will behave when I sleep on it and also how the style stays in for the week ahead.

 

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I am reading “Your Beauty Mark” by Dita Von Teese; you remember it from my post Tales from the Dressing table.  I have picked up one of the tips for styling hair from this interesting book.  Dita uses a large brush sprayed with hairspray to sort out fine flyaway hairs around the hairline.  I have started to do this since Christmas (when I gave this book to myself as a present!).  I used the blusher brush, sprayed with hairspray to tidy up the hairline and to set the kiss curls in my hairstyle when the hair is first dressed.

It works!  It works well and I have been rewarded with a style with great staying power.  I do my hair weekly and on a daily basis it takes less than 10 minutes to brush up in the mornings.

 

For special occasions I usually do it the day before, leaving the hair slightly wetter and sitting under the dryer about 15-20 minutes longer to achieve a really firm set that will stand sleeping on it and still brush up well for the event and following days when really great vintage hair will be required.

 

In May 2009 the day my father died in hospital we were called at about 8.00am to come immediately.  My hair was wet and I was showering as the call came in.  I had to jump into my clothes and get there as fast as possible.  My hair just dried naturally as the life changing day unfolded.  It was awful.  This experience has really highlighted for me how strong and able to cope with anything I feel when my hair is well styled.

 

Since then I have really enjoyed trying to make everyday a great vintage hair day!  Thank you for dropping by today.  Do make my day by leaving a comment.  I encourage you to have a go at vintage hairstyling and try rollers!

 

Thank you to Glenn for taking the photographs in this post.

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