Wednesday, 30 May 2012

New hair and new dress

I went to Retroella yesterday to have a haircut and freshen up what a friend of mine call my "curse lock". As usual Sarah did a stellar work and I'm as pleased as usual. I stay with my middy, though it's a bit shorter than usual. I also took the opportunity to have my eyebrows shaped and dyed.

Monday, 28 May 2012

Max Raabe

Ever listened to Max Raabe and his Palast Orchester? A workmate introduced him to me recently and his singing gives me the giggles. Raabe is a German singer and the style is 20’s and 30’s band music, regardless of what he sings- covers of old songs, original music or covers on modern hits. Listening to him makes it very easy to imagine the music coming from an old gramophone. He looks the part too, don’t you think? He reminds me a bit of Fred Astaire, actually.

Sunday, 27 May 2012

Hats from NK

Nordiska Kompaniet, or NK, was Swedens most exclusive department store, probably still is though it nowadays is more of an exclusive mall instead and to me it has lost a lot of the charm it had in my childhood. There are still some excellent stores though, especially when it comes to perfume. A lot of fashion has been sold there over the years and the museum Nordiska has many photographs that depict what was among the more fashionable in Sweden during the 30's and 40's. Recently i have been on a hat search binge in their archives and this is what i pulled up:


Monday, 21 May 2012

Properly dressed?

At Hederlige Harrys I talked with a girl who asked me if I dressed like this on a daily basis. I said that I dress more or less “vintagy” every day and mentioned that I had worn this particular outfit at work that very day. She asked “But what do your workmates say?” I felt a bit puzzled- why would my workmates say anything and then it got me thinking on how “normal” I see myself. I don’t think my clothes stand out, if anything I feel I dressed rather modestly and unflashy. I don’t always dress myself in full regalia vintage-wise, but I always wear skirts and at least moderate heels, I fix my hair and even if I don’t wear much makeup a normal workday, I do usually wear red lipstick. And of course that does stand out, especially at a workplace like mine where people either wear uniforms or dress very casually.

The outfit in question. Usually, though, I don't wear suits at work.

When I went to art school in my late teens it was very easy to see where you belonged. The girls in art classes died their hair red, wore a lot of tie dyes and long skirts and a lot of dangly jewelry. The girls in music tended to have curly hair in top knots and dresses patterned with flowers. And the girls in drama were easy to spot too- they were the ones who worked hardest to not look like everyone else. Of course, not every girl looked like that, but enough to make these particular looks the norm. A few years later I was standing at a bus station with a friend when a group of people approached and I said to my friend: “Musicians.”. She wondered why I thought that as they weren’t carrying any instruments, but when they come so close that we could hear what they talked about, I was proved right. At first I couldn’t answer my friend to why I had come to my conclusion, but later it dawned on me that all the women in the group had the “right” look.

More typical workwear, usually paired with a cardigan too- my workplace tends to be chilly.

It’s not so odd that people in a more or less closed group start to look alike. Its people you see often and it’s much easier to think something look good if you are exposed to it again and again. I don’t think any of my school mates thought that now that I’m in art/drama/music I need to adapt a certain look, rather they got attuned to it and unconsciously adapted. I certainly died my hair red, though I never fell for tie-dye, but I certainly didn’t do it too “look arty” Of course, my interest in looking the way I do started a long time ago, but my actions these last years have certainly fuelled and influenced my interest. I don’t buy glossy magazines to find clothes inspiration, I read blogs written by people who, like me, like the vintage look. And even if not all of my friends share it, a lot of them do. I’m not a part animal, but when I do go out I go to places like Fraulein Frauke, which inspired me further. I have, by choice, distanced myself from contemporary fashion and as I don’t see much of it, the way I and my friends dress, have become my norm.

I wear a lot of dresses too

What about my workmates then, what do they say? Not much, actually. They are used to me and if they say anything then I get compliments. I have, though it is a couple of years ago now, been told by my boss that I don’t have to dress up like I do, but I think she actually thought that I thought that I had to dress this way. But I do dress casual at work. Casual for me, that is.

Two examples on what I don't wear at work. Far too body-hugging and, in case of teh white blouse, far too low-cut.

What is proper work wear is, naturally, something that varies according to what kind of work it is. Many jobs demands uniforms, for example and if you work out of doors, then skirts and heels are not very practical. A more formal workplace may frown on clothes that are considered to stand out too much, and so on. What are your experiences? Can you wear what you want at work/schopol7with friends? And have you, like I have realized I do, started to see yourself as dressing perfectly normal and nothing to look twice at?

Sunday, 20 May 2012

My new vanity table

(Picture source: LIFE.)

You may remember that I have been wanting a vanity table for our bedroom, feeling a little worried that it's too tidy to contain one. But with just one bathroom and a teenage that probably is going to live there soon, it's not just vanity to have one, but practical to be able to move out my makeup and hair stuff to the bedroom.

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

A new housedress

Here’s the first of the two housedresses I bought from Green Dragon Lady Vintage on Etsy. It was sewn sometimes before 1944 and is very simple. It seems to have been cut to be buttoned down the front, but then someone decided against it and sewed the skirt together, closing the bodice with snaps. It is not particulary well-made- clearly something thrown together to be worn at home. (If anyone wonder, the seller was upfront with this and the dress wasn’t expensive.) For example, one pair of snaps are sewn in asymmetrical and there are too few of them, so if I want to wear this I need to change that and add a few.

Saturday, 12 May 2012

Hederlige Harrys

Yesterday we went to a very nice bar/party called Hederlige Harry (Honest Harry). We have never been there before but it takes place in an old cellar vault from time to time, in shape of a somewhat illegal bar somtime between the wars. Sweden never prohibited alcohol completely, but between 1917 and 1955 the Bratt system was in use. That meant that you were only allowed to buy a certain amount of liquors every month and that amount was based on income, sex and civil status. A married woman wasn't allowed one, for example, but an unmarried could, but she couldn't buy as much as a man. Another aspect was that even if you could buy alcohol in bars and restaurants it was surrounded by rules to make it more difficult.

Hederlige Harry's was great fun, even if I got a bit tired, being the first time did something since I got ill. We didn't know many there, but people were very nice and easy to talk with. There was also an adorable Irish wolfhound- she was so large that when she was behind the bar you got an impression of a dog bartender...

I had been warned that it usually was pretty cold there so I thought it was a good opportunity to wear my blue suit for the first time. I bought it a couple of months ago and was very pleased as finding suits that fits me and that I can afford isn't something that happens that often. It's a Swedish brand called TeDeWe and is really a very generic suit, but also clearly a 1940's one. It has the broad shoulders, a somehwat nipped in waist and is made of some kind of blend, I want to say wool/rayon in medium weight as it is warm, but not overly so. It is also in very good shape and doesn't seem to have been worn much. Naturally we forget to bring a camera, but we took a few pics when we got home.

I paired the suit with a knitted reproduction sweater from Rocket Originals and wool stockings and I wasn't cold at all. The shoes is a lucky find a few years back from La Redoute, of all places. I also raided my pile of detachable collars I inherited from my grandmother- I really need to iron and take pictures of those. The beret is the one I wrote about in my last post. I tried to aim for late 30's in style, which basically meant another hairtyle than I usually wear. I managed to pin it up and it stayed up. I worked yesterday before I went out and several workmates thought I had cut my hair short.

It just isn't possible to take pictures at our home without animals. When Adolf who modelled with me above, left, Eddie filled in.

Thursday, 10 May 2012

A review on Pleated beret with accent trim

The Pattern
I bought the pattern for the 1930's Pleated beret with accent trim as a PDF-pattern from Kalliedesigns at Etsy. When writing this the cost was $4.25. It was mailed to me very promptly, well within the time limit of 24 hours. The pattern is a copy of an old one, and is a bit sloppily executed, I'm sorry to say. The lines are broad and uneven and you need to redraw them to get an even shape. That is, however, not difficult to do. The pattern also contains 2 pages of sewing instructions. I find those easy to follow, but I suspect that you might find it a bit more difficult if you are unused to sewing.

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Meet Eddie

Perhaps you remember that we took over one of my brother-in-law's dogs a year ago, because one of his kids started to get allergic and they wanted to limit their pets. We got the Shetland Sheepdog Lipton and it worked out great. He is a really sweet dog, though a tad reserved to strangers- very typical of his breed, in fact. Well, now my BIL find that he can't keep the other dog either and asked us if we could consider another one. Eddie has been living with us for a week now and yesterday it become official, we are keeping him. So meet Eddie:

He is a rather unusual breed, a Dutch kooikerhondje. Like Lipton he is very sweet and friendly, though a tad wilder. They grow up together and is the same age and when Lipton moved in with us I was a bit worried that he would miss his buddy. Well, he hasn't pined, that's for sure, but they both seem very happy to be back together.

Eddie seems to be settling down very nicely with us and we are happy to have him. He is a very cuddly dog and love sitting in your lap, even if he is a bit too large for that.

Monday, 7 May 2012

Retail therapy

I feel much better than I did last week, but I'm still weak as a kitten. I also have had plenty of time to go through Etsy and found a few nuggets that I felt I needed as extra medication.

Two novelty print housedresses from the same place. Homesewn by a woman who passed away in 1944. I think they will make really nice summer frocks.

This dress is not from the 40's, even if the style is- I would guess early 80's. Still, I like the cut and the colour and it was really cheap, so I took a chance, even if it is in polyester.

A 60's cardigan, but the style is pretty classic. And I fell for the colour- I haven't worn yellow since I was three, but now I have this and also the yellowe ensemble I just finished.

The most extravagant of my purchases, an evening gown in silk from the late 30's. I just couldn't resist it and I do have occasions in May to wear it.

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Temporarily not here

I try not to let ordinary life, unless it is about something close to the theme of the blog, spill over too much here, but I have been rather silent for a while. The reason have been some ongoing health problems that has grew worse lately. Now I have finally found out that I have a version of pneumonia and hopefully anti-biotics will set me right soon. However, the rest of the week I will just rest, keeping computer time to a minimum. The plan is to be back, full of energy and zest, next week.

(Picture source:
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