Fab Vintage and Creative Moments
Thrift Store Heaven
Have you found your favourite vintage store yet? True to her vintage blog queen status, Laetitia, a London-based online fashion editor and social media consultant, found Hidden Treasures in Topanga Canyon on her recent trip to Los Angeles.
'Hidden Treasures is absolutely filled with clothes, trinkets, furniture, bed linens, you name it they have it,' she explains. 'Everything is laid out haphazardly. It is musty. It is rusty, but it is so much fun. Everything is pretty affordable. I picked up a postcard print silk blouse from the 50s there for $6, and I tried on a few dresses from the 50s and 60s that were in fairly good condition and all under $15.The trinkets and furniture were also really cheap, but I didn't want to consider a purchase for too long as I knew I wouldn't be able to bring it home, and I would clearly end up in tears on the side of the road.' Love Laetitia, London, mademoisellerobot.com
Words are Jenny's thing, which is why she's currently writing her novel in Avignon, France, lucky thing! And she happens to be a vintage fan. Here she's in one of her first vintage pieces. 'The dress was kind of long, so I chopped it off and made it a mini,' Jenny explains, adding, 'The story of every vintage dress's life once in the hands of a young girl.'
Looking back at her younger self, Jenny wishes someone had told her, 'Make your own way in the world'. And she also wishes she could tell herself that everyday and actually do it.
Love Jenny, Avignon, fashionforwriters.com
Need a handful of bows to perk up your tops, jackets and dresses. It's a great way to use up those pesky scraps of material.
20cm x 20 cm/8 x 8 ins cotton for the bow
20cm x 7cm/ 8 x 2.8 ins for the bow tie
Fold the material for the bow in half with the right sides facing. Sew around the edges leaving a 6cm/2.5ins gap. Pull the inside out through the gap. Sew up the remaining gap and press.
Sew the bow tie as for the bow. Then pucker the middle of the bow a little. Loop the bow tie around the middle of the bow to hold the puckers. Pin the tie in place, so one end of the strip folds over the other. Sew in place. You can wear different bows on the same top.
PS. Once you get the hang of making bows, you can make them any size you want.
I spent a lot of today kind of down in the dumps because as I was driving to the thrift stores my car started to shake scarily. Taking your car to the mechanic is the worst. Otherwise today was pretty good. The thrift stores were weirdly good after the terrible time I had with them last week. I found a '40s dress at an in-town thrift store that's always picked over.
Rhiannon likes fashion, reading books by southern women writers, baking muffins and daydreaming about trips out of town.' Check her out at liebemarlene.blogspot
Belts really can transform a dress or top in an instant. The great thing about this reversible belt is that you get two looks in one accessory. It has a solid strip of fabric on one side, and contrasting panels on the other.
1.25 metre/1.25 yards cotton in main colour
.25 metre/.25 yard interfacing
.25 metre/.25 yard cotton in contrast colour
needle and thread
Cut a strip of the main colour 1 metre x 22cms (1 yard x 8 ins), and the same for the interfacing.
On a low heat iron the interfacing onto the reverse of the fabric.
Cut four squares of the main colour 16cms x 12 cms (6 x 5 ins), and same dimensions of the three squares of contrast fabric.
Lay the strips of the table horizontally. Alternate the fabrics, then pin sides together and sew. Join the two long strips of material right sides together, leaving a 10 cm/4 ins gap.
Pull the right side through the gap, then sew up the gap.
Taking two small strips of Velcro, position them where they will be covered by your bow and stitch onto the belt on both sides, so your belt is fully reversible.
PS Fix your bow to the belt with velcro or little safety pins.
The Uniform Project
If you're worried you've nothing to wear, perhaps you can take inspiration from by New York's sustainable fashion goddess Sheena Matheiken, who wore the same dress for a year. Well, seven identical dresses to be exact. With one black dress for each day of the week, she then embellished her 'uniform' with vintage, hand-made or hand-me-down treasures.
Designed to suit all body types, Sheena's dress can be worn front or back, is made from excess fabric, and hand-washable. (Dry cleaning isn't recommended as it's toxic for the environment and for whoever's wearing the dress).
PS. The funds Sheena raised went to the Akanksha Foundation for the education of underprivileged children in India. Check her out at theuniformproject.com
'I've been known to fall in love with and buy expensive vintage dresses that I most certainly will never wear (or even fit into),' confesses Emily from Hampstead, Maryland. 'BUT I've got this idea for making use of them!! You might think it's kind of dumb, but I thought I'd share anyway. I've started using them as wall decor! It realized that having them hanging in my closet was no fun at all, and I would never really see them, so this way I can enjoy them all the time!!' Check her out at whichgoose.blogspot.com Vintage Find
How amazing is this 1940s rayon dress? A prime example of an excellent antique mall find. It was only $25, and I don't think it was ever worn!
Solanah, Portland Oregon who loves vintage clothing, cheese, costume dramas, and kittens. Check her out at vixenvintage.com
Flea Market Finds
A little confession. No Saturday is complete without a trip to my local flea market.
It's not so much about buying stuff. I just love sifting through all the lovely old treasures.
It's hard to explain, but it's like I start to see things differently. Suddenly I'm inspired to try new things, to become more creative, to make a difference, to think and live outside the square.
Stylish Gift Bags
Don't you just love it when you come across a really good recycling idea that also looks good? These gorgeous gift bags are made out of two sheets of newspaper. When you're deciding which sections of the newspaper to use, it's best to go for pages with lots of different articles, as it's visually more interesting. If you turn the type upside down or sideways the focus is on the bag not the newsprint.
An A5 piece of cardboard
PVA glue and brush
To make up:
Select two sheets of newspaper 116.5 cm x 30.5 cm/45.9 x 12ins and make all the folds as in the template on page x. Start by cutting out two strips of cardboard 15.5 cm x 2.5 cm/6.1 x 1ins, then paste them under the 15.5cm/6.1ins sections on the reverse sides of the bag. These strips will strengthen the bag handles.
Then paste the sides of the bag together along the 2.5 cm/1ins side overhang. Make sure both layers are pasted. Then glue the top fold to the inside of the bag.
Turn the bag upside down. Push the short edges in towards the bottom centre of the bag. Fold down the remaining two sides, so they're like two envelope flaps closing over each other. Cut a piece of cardboard 14.5 cms x 9 cms/5.7 x 3.5ins and place inside the bottom of the bag, to secure it. Then paste cardboard to the bottom of the bag. Make sure all the folds are properly glued down.
At the top front and back of the bag, make a mark 4 cm/1.6ins in from the edge and 1.5cm/.6ins from the top. This is where the holes for the string/ribbon handles will go. If you have an eyelet kit, then make up your eyelets in each of these spots. You can also use a hole punch, then simply reinforce each hole. Cut 30cm/11.8ins of string/ribbon for each handle. Feed the ribbon/string through the holes from the outer side of the bag and knot. Continue with the three remaining holes and you're done.