Thursday, September 18, 2014

Autumn/Winter Outfit Inspiration For Vintage Girls.

Every year I seem to struggle with knowing how to dress when it gets colder. I think there's a lot to be said about layering the correct way and wearing jeans in a way to make them look vintage (although, to be fair jeans are vintage, so I don't get why people get so uptight about vintage girls wearing jeans when they want to)! Here are few images to get started on...

Woollen circle skirts teamed with boots is a wonderful way to still wear the classic 1950s skirt but bring it into autumn/winter by wearing a heavier fabric. Greens, browns and reds are also a classic!

Fur! Any vintage girl knows how important fur is when completing an outfit for the colder weather. I much prefer real fur and can't stand fake fur. Personally, I think since the animal has been dead for about 60 years, then what's the harm?!

Capes! I've yet to actually own a cape but I'm determined to buy at least one this year! For when a coat just feels too boring...

Wooly tights, thick socks, boots and open-toed shoes! The most wonderful combination!

Coats made from check/tartan/plaid fabric! A classic (I've worn that word out now...) fabric for autumn/winter.

Cowl necks! So cosy and warm! A bit more of a modern twist, but can look wonderful teamed with vintage! (Besides, the second photo is from the 1980s and I'm planning to buy the knitting pattern for it!)

And lastly, jeans! This is a perfect example of how to team original vintage with the modern skinny-fit jeans! And those brogues! A stylish choice of footwear for the season.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Jaffa Drizzle Loaf

This is a cake I make time and time again and always turns out to be delicious.


5oz softened butter;
8oz self-raising flour;
1 and a half tsp baking powder;
8oz golden caster sugar;
3 large eggs;
6 tbsp milk;
Finely grated zest of 1 large orange.

3 tbsp fresh orange juice;
2oz golden caster sugar;
2oz cooking chocolate (either milk or dark).


Takes 1 and a quarter hours, plus cooling and setting. Cuts into 8-10 slices.

1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees centigrade/Gas Mark 4/fan oven 160 degrees centigrade. Grease and line a 2 pint loaf tin (or I sometimes use a deep round cake tin). Cream the butter and sugar together in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Then gradually beat in the eggs, one at a time. Next, sift the flour and baking powder into the mixture and stir until well combined. Then add the zest and milk and give a final stir. Spoon the mix into the tin and level the top. Bake for 40-50 minutes, until golden brown and firm to the touch.

2. When the cake is cooked, remove it from the oven. Heat the orange juice and sugar gently in a small pan, stirring until dissolved. Prick the top of the cake all over with a fork or skewer and spoon the orange juice mix over it. Leave to cool in the tin, then remove and cool completely on a wire rack.

3. Melt the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of hot water. Drizzle the melted chocolate over the cake and leave to set before slicing.

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Chocolate-Orange Flapjacks.

Many apologies for the lack of blog posting recently. A lot has happened in the last week... Mainly me quitting the week day job for good... Due to bullying, eczema and just a general feeling of "I'm better than this! I should not be scrubbing toilets for a living!" So... I'm currently job searching, have got an interview at one place and a trial day at another so it's looking up. I mean, I woke up this morning feeling sick with worry about the bills and rent but I have to stay positive.

Anyway, I realised I should do other posts than my outfits. And one thing I do time and time again is bake cakes. So I'm going to be sharing my favourite recipes and to start us off, here's a recipe for...

Chocolate-Orange Flapjacks.


9oz unsalted butter;
9oz caster sugar;
6oz golden syrup;
Finely grated zest of 2 large oranges;
15oz porridge oats;
4oz sultanas;
4oz dried apricots, roughly chopped;
2 tbsp sunflower seeds;
2oz chocolate chips (milk or dark)
2 1/2oz melted chocolate (milk or dark).


Takes 40-45 minutes, plus cooling and setting. Makes 14.

1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees centigrade/Gas Mark 4/fan oven 160 degrees centigrade. Lightly oil and base-line a shallow 12inchx8inch cake tin.

2. In a large pan over a low heat, melt the butter, sugar and syrup with the orange zest, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat and stir in the oats, sultanas, dried apricots and sunflower seeds. Cool slightly, then stir in the chocolate chips and spoon into the tin. Level the surface and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden. Leave in the tin until almost cold, then turn out on to a board.

3. Remove the lining paper and cut into 14 bars. Spoon the melted chocolate into a piping bag and drizzle over the bars (or just drizzle the chocolate from a teaspoon). Leave the chocolate to set before serving.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Curtains aren't my forte...

Overall I would say that curtains are easy as pie... Just a few squares or rectangles of fabric gathered at the top by curtain tape. However, one must not overlook the difficulty of getting the length right, both with the main fabric and the lining... I recently bought a pair of original 1950s curtains from the larger one of my local antique shops for only £10 (the linings are a bit ripped in places). I knew they'd be too short for the window but knew it would look great with a border added on the bottom to add the appropriate length.

Firstly, they ended up sitting in a bag a amongst a pile of fabric for about 2 months due to me not being able to get to my sewing machine, except for Sunday's for an hour of two, due to other commitments. (They're were other projects waiting in line before I could start on the curtains as well).

Secondly, when I did cut the borders I managed to cut them too short... Only realising once I'd attached them to the curtains, 2 months after cutting the borders...

Thankfully I had enough of the border fabric left to re-cut some longer ones. If course, I needed to add length to the linings as well. Thankfully, I pick up curtains from charity shops a lot because I'll use the main fabric as dress fabric (so much cheaper). So I had a load of curtain linings I could cut up and use.

However, the linings were the worst things I've ever sewn... I had to re-adjust them about 5 times!! They just wouldn't hang correctly and kept on dragging out at the bottom, showing beneath the main pretty curtain fabric! I got there in the end. They're definitely not perfect. But, seriously? I couldn't give a damn after the hours spent on them! They look pretty enough and that's all that matters.

I should of taken before photos, of when they didn't have the added borders, but it just didn't cross my mind at the time. Anyway, here's the finished photos...

They're not the best photos but it was stupidly difficult to get any better, I'm afraid.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Today's purchases.

OK, so the curtains post will end up being the one after this instead... But anyway!

So I don't usually manage to go to the smaller one of my local antique shops but I managed to fit it in this morning. Here's what I managed to find...

This stunning (!) Monsoon 1990s does 1940s purple velvet evening gown for £8. I couldn't decide whether I wanted it when it was hanging up. It looked a bit lifeless and shapeless. However the owner was very kind and said I could bring it back if it wasn't right (which is very rare with antique and vintage shops). I was shocked at how amazing it was as soon as I put it on and wrapped my trusty black waist belt around it to give it shape. I'm not sure when I'm going to be able to wear this as I don't go out but it's too stunning to let go now!

These two cheeky chaps for £14 (£7 each). Well, I couldn't leave one on it's own, they're friends! I think they're mink and are either from the 1930s, 1940s or 1950s. I'm not great with working out the date and type of animal of fur yet! But as long as it's real fur and has the head on still then that's all that matters to me!

And lastly these pair of taffeta curtains for £7. I'm going to use them for the fabric and make things like these...


Monday, August 11, 2014

A Week of Outfits.

I've been faffing around with a pair of 1950s curtains for one of my bedroom windows the past week and I've finally got them up! Photos and information for those will be up in my next blog post but here's a round-up of last week's outfits for now!

Outfit Details:-

Top stolen from mumma;
1950s reproduction shorts made by me;
Belt stolen from mumma;
Necklace gift from ex;
Earrings stolen from mumma;
Cardigan bought years and years ago from Tammy;
1970s headscarf thrifted few years ago.

Outfit Details:-

Top thrifted a few years ago;
Skirt from Next last year;
Cardigan from Jane Norman years ago.
Belt from Warehouse years ago;
Necklace stolen from mumma;
Earrings stolen from mumma;
Headscarf made by me.

Outfit Details:-

1980s top thrifted a month ago;
1950s reproduction capri pants/peddle pushers made by me last summer;
Belt from Miss Selfridge years ago;
Necklace stolen from mumma;
Earrings from Topshop years ago;
Headscarf thrifted years ago.

1950s reproduction top and shorts made by me this year;
Belt stolen from mumma;
Necklace gift from ex;
Earrings gift from mumma;
1980s headscarf thrifted years ago.

Outfit Details:-

Dress thrifted last summer;
Cardigan stolen from mumma;
Belt thrifted last year;
1950s faux pearl necklace from antiques shop 6 months ago;
Faux pearl earrings from River Island years ago;
1980s brooch thrifted couple of weeks ago;
1970s headscarf thrifted few years ago.

Outfit Details:-

I wore this outfit but with my faux pearl necklace and earrings instead, so...
1940s reproduction dress made by me;
Hair flower from Accessories couple of years ago;
Green 1940s brooch given to me while I was buying a 1940s suit;
1980s floral gold and white brooch thrifted couple of weeks ago.

Outfit Details:-

Top stolen from mumma;
1960s skirt thrifted a month ago;
Belt stolen from mumma;
Necklace bought in Topshop sale years ago;
Earrings from Claire's years ago;
Headscarf thrifted years ago.

Close-up of the print...

It's the best, right?! On the price tag it said "for the fabric"!! Why would you want to cut this original 1960s skirt up?! It's my favourite skirt now!

Sunday, August 3, 2014

1940s Style Wrap Dress.

So remember this 1940s sewing pattern and vintage fabric I was on about a week it so ago?

Well I managed to finish my version of it a few days ago (in time to wear it to Helmingham Hall Festival of Classic and Sports Cars today - photos will be up on the blog sometime in the next few days, I took a gazillion!)

This is how I styled it and how it came out...

So this is the front. It wasn't actually meant to be a real wrap dress, according to the sewing instructions but I wanted it to be badly because I'm obsessed with them and find them so easy to wear! It was just meant to fasten a bit above the waist with some snaps and just gave the tie belt as an effect. However, I used my knowledge from making a few 1950s reproduction wrap blouses to turn it into a real wrap dress and not have the snaps on the bodice.

Outfit details:-
1940s green brooch given to me for free because the shop was closing down and I was buying a 1940s suit;
1980s gold and white floral brooch thrifted last week for 75p;
1950s fruit necklace gift from ex;
Earrings stolen from mumma;
Hair flower from Accessorise couple of years ago;
Dress made by me (obviously).

Here's a close-up of the contrasting parts. Look at how cute that patch pocket is!

This is the back.

Overall I am very pleased with how this has turned out. However, while I was out wearing it today there was a bit of a breeze and I ended up having to constantly hold the skirt part down, otherwise, I would of ended up flashing everyone! So maybe I'll wear a slip underneath it next time...