Sunday, 18 November 2012

Blogging my age?




Me three times, about 20 years apart.
1973

1993

I have been thinking a little about age, blogging and vintage ever since I read a thread on the subject on TFL. Vintage blogs written by women over 40 were especially asked for and in the discussion that followed some expressed a concern that they were too old for wearing vintage.
 
2011
I am 42, so yes, my blog is written by a woman who is over 40. Does that make my blog especially interesting for the 40+? I don’t write with a certain age in mind, I write with for people with a certain interest. I don’t read blogs based on age either, I read blogs that interest me. But perhaps I’m the odd one out? People I spend time with have an age range that spans over 40 years and if it doesn’t concern me in “real life”, then it stands to reason that I don’t care about it online. Do you search out blogs written by your age peers? I do read quite a few blog written by my age peers and I think a similar age perspective may be part of why I find them interesting, On the whole, though, I think the majority of the blogs I read are written by women who are younger than me. Most people who blog are a generation younger than me, after all.

As for being too old to dress vintage, I guess that stems from an idea that this is a sub-culture for the young. I don’t subscribe to that view. We all have different approaches to what we wear, vintage or not, and it is only natral that age play a part in what we choose to wear. I don’t dress the same as I did 20 years ago and I am certain that would hold true even if I had been into vintage dressing then. Taste evolves, after all.

But, in the 40’s, youth was more interesting than age in Hollywood and the stars that we adore were, most of them, in their twenties. And somewhat by default, most pictures here depict young women. So here are a few pictures of beautiful and glamorous women who were in their forties, or more, in the 40's.

Katherine Hepburn, born 1907, in 1947.


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Elsa Lanchester, born 1902, in 1949.


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Irene Dunne, born 1898.


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 In 1940.


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Bette Davies, born 1908, in 1950.


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Margaret Dumont, born in 1882.


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Lillian Gish, born 1893, in 1937.

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Judith Anderson, born 1897 in 1936.


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Mae West, born 1893 in 1941.


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Gloria Swanson, born 1899, in 1941.


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Friday, 16 November 2012

Bathroom dreams

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I have mentioned before that we live in an apartment in a house that was built in 1954. Lots of the original décor is still there, but the bathroom was, to our big disappointment, completely remodeled. The previous owners were very proud of it, but we found it absolutely horrid. The lovely tiled bathtub had been removed, a shower had been installed and the sink was made of stainless steel and wood. If you didn’t know it, steel gets grungy much quicker than enamel and wood in a bathroom. Well, no matter how much you dry it as soon as water gets on it, which it does if you only wash your hands, will start to rot. And the tiles on the walls where slightly structured which made them harder to keep clean as well. So remodeling the bathroom was always pretty high on our list, but not quite as soon as now.

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However, the whole house has undergone a complete makeover of the plumbing system and with that a new bathroom, no matter what. As the original bathroom is gone and some of the features of a 50’s bathroom is now out of reach due to regulation, like having tiles halfway up on the walls and then just a paintjob, we decided to go back two decades and go for an Art Deco inspired (not reproduced) bathroom in black and white.

I really wanted a checkered floor but the budget didn’t stretch to that, so now the floors are in black tiles and the walls in white.


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 More annoying regulations meant removing the window sill and installing a completely unnecessary radiator at the most inconvenient place possible. The bathroom is small as it is, and now it is even harder to furnish. I am not very pleased with the company who did it- they could have asked if we wanted that radiator somewhere else and they almost put in a floor in the wrong colour, prison grey, instead. By luck J was at home and could stop them! With black and white in mind we started to look for suitable furniture and to our surprise we actually found what we wanted at IKEA!
The series is called Hemnes and we have already bought the cabinet and plan to buy these two as well.

We also really want a black bathtub but as I said, the bathroom is small, so we haven’t yet decided what kind of tub it will be. We really like the design of this one, even if that harks back even more in time. Oh well, I said inspired, didn’t I?

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The last items on the shopping list are new black and white towels and then I will be able to show you our new bathroom.

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Wardrobe musings

Still trying to come to terms with wearing uniform and came up with another positive: I will be able to drastically clean out my closet. I guess most of us have clothes that we don’t really like but wear anyway on the days when the dirty laundry is piling up. I quick survey of my wardrobe revealed that about half of what I have falls into this category. Clothes that are perfectly fine, but don’t fit as well as they should or have a colour that isn’t exactly right. My wardrobe space is rather limited and at the moment it is pretty crammed, so a clean out would be very welcome. I know I have sweaters, cardigans, dresses and shoes that I don’t really care for.
Lauren Bacall, 1945

So, what to leave? My favourites, of course. My 40’s wardrobe project, which I hope will be a little more visible if I get rid of my so-so clothes. I suspect that there will be a few holes visible as well, especially in the departments of leisure wear and outdoor clothes. As it is now I try to change when I get home from work, but as often as not I don’t bother. When I start wearing uniform at work I really have to. Cotton housedresses are really nice wear at home, I have already noticed that, but I would need one of two additional ones. Paired with thicker stockings and a warm cardigan that ought to work for winter as well.

I have tried to organize my sewing projects-list as well. I divided it into four lists; 40’s clothes, vintage clothes from other eras, 18th century clothes and one for other historical eras. I then assigned a letter to ever project. A for projects that needs to be finished ASAP. B for projects I have started and C for projects that I have planned. For example, my 40’s wardrobe has an A on the raincoat and black wool dress. They are clothes for the Autumn/Winter wardrobe and they are very near completion. All the other clothes for Autumn/Winter this year has a B and Spring/Summer clothes got C. Even clothes that I have started actually, as they are for the next season. I did this with all four lists and then I made a fifth one contains all the A’s. Then I divided that list into A, B, C. A there is my Victorian circus costume for Fraulein Frauke that needs to be finished by the 24th. B is my raincoat and then all the rest got C. When the Victorian costume is done, the raincoat will get A and something else B. I’m not sure that this will work for me as I have just started it, but it really feels that I have got a much better overview and it’s easy to see what I need to focus on.

And yes, I did use an app for it, but I am sure it works just as well with the pen and paper version.

I have bought a few clothes these autumn, staple items that I know I will have use for later. A green cardigan and sweater combo in lamb’s wool. And a few clothes from a company called Emmy Design that Elsa brought to my attention. I can really recommend them! It’s not reproduction clothes, but the style is definitely 40’s and 50’s for most of the design and the quality seems to be high. I bought a swing skirt in both brown and black and they are excellent everyday skirts. Perfect for a late 40’s or 50’s look.

I also bought this knitted dress, which was a bit nervous, knits tend to cling just where you don’t want it.

But the fit is great and it’s so comfortable, despite being 70% wool it isn’t the least bit itchy, even if you do need a slip underneath. I bought it in ruby red and I’m very tempted in the black version too. And I think I need the knitted cardigan to match!

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