Wardrobe drama of a different kind

 I don't know whether I want to scream or cry.

I've been looking for vintage wardrobes for ages. There are three things I've had to take in to consideration - 1) price 2) size 3) loveliness. I don't have a huge budget for it, we live in a terrace, so size is very important due to stairs and room space and I don't want to settle for any old wardrobe, I want something that makes me swoon. Those three important factors have proved a very tricky combination.

But recently I found something that ticked all those boxes. ALL the boxes. If saying I want a wardrobe to make me swoon sounds fanciful, dramatic or maybe a bit weird, let me explain that I'm not a girl who dreams about being  a princess or lusts after expensive handbags and shoes. I aspire to rehome interesting things. That's what makes me happy albeit a vintage dress, an old picture, china or furniture etc.

So after falling in love with a 1950's wardrobe in a charity shop, I asked the shop lady if she would hold it for me as I needed to check the measurements. This she did and the next day we went back with tape measure in hand and checked the dimensions of the wardrobe against the measurements we had carefully noted down. It would fit. Hoorah, I was so chuffed. We weren't sure when we would be in for delivery so the lady said I could buy the wardrobe and they would just keep it for me for as long as they needed to. I paid my money and arranged to go back and pay/arrange for delivery later this month.

I was tickled pink that I'd finally found such a beautiful wardrobe. I've been visualising this wardrobe in our room. I'd even started writing about it. It wasn't just any ordinary wardrobe, the handles were really detailed and like nothing I'd seen before and the shelves inside were labeled 'shirts' etc, it was really beautiful with interesting details.  In preparation for the new one coming, I emptied the existing wardrobe, we dismantled it so we would get it down the stairs. The Boy then put it back together again in the downstairs hall and I gave it a clean. I'd told the charity shop I would donate the wardrobe that my lovely new 1950's one would replace.

I'm sure you have worked out this story does not have a happy ending..........I tried to arrange delivery only to be told that they didn't know what wardrobe I was talking about. They asked if I could I see it on the shop floor as it wasn't out the back......... No I could not see it on the shop floor. I then receive an apology before being advised that they must have ''accidentally sold it to someone else'' ........despite it having 'sold' on it, they sold MY wardrobe all bought and paid for to someone else!!!!!!!!

I had to take a big breath before I dare speak! I know it wasn't intentional. (Actually - I don't know that, as I wasn't there when it was sold to person number 2, so I'm giving them the benefit of the doubt here) I was so annoyed and upset!!! If this had been a high street or department store I would have complained a lot more, how much can you complain in a charity shop? What would you have done? An apology and a refund is all I have now. That and a pile of clothes and shoes and a wardrobe by my front door! *sob*
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Holiday adventures

As I mentioned in the last post it's been a wee quiet on the blog the last week or so as I've had two glorious weeks off from the day job. We took no time off when we moved house in April so we spent the first week doing some bits around the house. Well I say we, I emptied a bookcase and shuffled the contents across the floor then sat back and watched The Boy paint the walls.Occasionally I would nod and give encouragement - in the form of a mug of tea. He's done a good job though, he 'cuts' in and everything, I would totally skip that and start slapping it on so it's probably for the best that I'm not wielding a brush...

I also went to a 'summer soiree' in a divine little shop we have in Norwich called Poppy Valentine, it's a brilliant label that makes much of it's stock from vintage fabrics - dresses, bags, cushions etc All items stocked are made in the UK. There was some complimentary fizz and some nibbles, and a whopping 20% (at least) off the goodies. To good to miss really! I turned up just as a new bottle of fizz was being opened, well fancy that! I took so many pictures because it's just all so gorgeous.

I did treat myself, as it was such a good discount I decided I had to. I bought a lovely new make up bag, a coin purse (which I'm going to use as a mini make up bag as it's big enough to hold a lipstick & compact and these simply beautiful hair slides, made with art deco buttons. Claire the owner of Poppy Valentine (and creative genius!) told me that these buttons were given to her in a box of buttons from her grandma. This just made me love them a little bit more.

So after two glasses of fizz, I met The Boy and we decided it would be a really good idea to go and have some more. So shopping bag in hand we went on for vino. On the way home I decided that the dress I was wearing should be snapped for my Project 365 page - so here I am quite worse for wear outside a Norwich book shop.

I'm wearing a St. Michaels 80's does 40's style dress. A dream to wear. The navy blue Kelly bag was a birthday present to myself from a charity shop and the little white peep toes were from Primark £3 reduced from £6!! Such a shame they only had that pair as they are so comfy and perfect for me as we travel by foot quite a lot.

Notice I don't have a shopping bag full of goodies?.....Well we walk home, buy a chinese on route and all is well. Happily full of vino and food we go to bed, excited that we actually go on holiday the next day. 3AM - I wake up and think...'oh my god, I can't remember having my camera or my shopping bag when I got home!' so I attempt to sneak downstairs without waking The Boy up ( I'm utterly rubbish at being quiet, even more rubbish when really trying to be - so he didn't stand a chance!)  I head downstairs with that panicky feeling you get when you think you've lost your purse....camera was there! Phew!... My shopping bag wasn't. I hunted everywhere I thought I may have put it - including all those daft places that you might think were really sensible after a few vino's..............cupboards, drawers, linen basket!...It was nowhere.

So in the early hours of the morning, I'm giving myself a huge telling off for being an idiot and a drunken fool. The button hair slides were safe though, as like a child at Christmas I'd popped them in as soon as I could when we got to the bar (perhaps the bar part isn't quite so child like, although I got my first sip of the hard stuff by the time I was five - oh yes, I liked a sip of Babycham at Christmas!) So I'm convinced I've left it in the take away. Oh dear.

The Boy cleverly decides to check the camera to see if there's any last known pictures of it, which is very considerate considering I've woken him up with all this fuss and nonsense. It becomes clear that I have obviously walked all the way home without once realising I don't have my shopping! Luckily I rang the bar the next day and my faith in human nature was restored at hearing someone had handed it in! Both fortunate and suprising! So lesson learned there.......... Always take a camera out to help you trace your evening! This is where I wonder if I actually need a P.A. Or a perhaps a  carer.......................

The lovely button hair slides, I can't show you the other items I bought as I haven't picked them up from lost property yet...

The next day we wake up exhausted following the nights drama and we had to be up early as we had some errands to do before leaving for our hol and I hadn't packed a thing! What do you pack for a British holiday? The weather is so ridiculously changeable! We kept it local this year and popped over the border to Suffolk. We hired a beautiful barn conversion in a tiny village. A village so small that when we got there we found it had no pub!! A wee bit of a shock, but we had opted for a total 'away from it all' holiday this year as we have both been so so busy. Rehab though? Well that was something I wasn't really up for!

Our residence for the week

Hooray for the Co-op is what I say. The shop was a 35 min walk away and we braved the country roads with no paths and fought with the country bugs that tried to beat us back with their buzziness and eagerness to fly into my mouth (maybe that's just because mine is constantly open...)  and we purchased wine. Mission accomplished. Such a shame there was no pub though, such the heart of a village in a small community like that. I did ponder the idea of going over to the playing fields late at night on the off chance that there may be some country youths hanging out, thinking I could responsibly confiscate booze from them....... but we stuck to the supermarket.

We had the laziest week really. Very much a snooze when you like, eat what you want and let those batteries recharge. I took a vanity case full of toiletry goodies with me to have some pamper sessions. I'm now a convert to Lush products. Oh my goodness, if you haven't tried the Volcanic foot mask you simply have not lived! It's just fabulous. Perfect for chaps too.

Luckily for you all I don't have loads of pics to bore you with as frankly we were just lazy bums for a week and didn't nothing especially exciting, we just kicked back and relaxed. We did get to Southwold for some fish and chips and a nice walk on the pier and along the dunes. Southwold is such a lovely place but I have to say that Sheringham and Cromer in Norfolk are still my favorite places (I think Norfolk has better fish & chips too if I'm honest...)

Here I am a 70's dress which actually looks very 50's I think. Demonstrating how not to pose - arms behind back does not work on this occasion!

A seaside tradition, just has to be done. I don't like these plastic trays though, I want to eat my chips out of paper please!

Back to reality now. Holiday over, back to work. I expect the usual post holiday blues to set in so a bit of retail therapy may be in order so I shall be hitting the chaz boutiques to see what I can find. *note to self - DO NOT buy more china.................

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What's new pussy cat?

Firstly, sorry for the lack of posts this last week. I've been away on a lovely break in a little village in Suffolk. I have basically done little but eat,drink and sleep for a week. It was seven lovely days of recharging the batteries. So now I am back, normal service will return......

Would you like to hear some exciting news? Hmmm? Well I'm pleased and very excited (very, very,very,very) to announce that I shall now be writing for Vintage Norwich! Thanks to the lovely blogger Retro Chick for asking me. I'm super happy to be on board. Retro chick is also the editor of Vintage Norwich - no, I don't know how she juggles it all either. *Each time I meet her I'm expecting her to have some vintage style knickerage action going on over her clothes, to demonstrate she is indeed some kind of vintage super hero.

Vintage Norwich is a brilliant website that really showcases what's on offer in Norwich and the surrounding areas. About two years ago I vividly recall a conversation in which I expressed how I felt vintage was going to be much more mainstream sooner rather than later and that Norwich would blossom with the trend. It feels really good to know that statement was right!

So my biog for the site is now there for all to see. Including a mug shot. I decided to use the recent one of me in my hat. The Boy had to look twice at it and said it didn't look anything like me (who said the camera never lies?) So big apology in advance for any disappointment caused if you meet me in real life!

I'm thrilled to be working with the Vintage Norwich team. I'm looking forward to spreading the word that Norwich is a fine vintage city indeed. Pop over to the site and have a look, there's a facebook page for you to like too (click Here) It's a great way to keep up to date with events, reviews and what's goings on. Whether you live in or near Norwich, or even if you might just visit one day, the Vintage Norwich site is a superb resource.

*Just to confirm that I have never seen Retro Chick sporting her knickers outside of her clothes. Yet. ;O)
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Buy Buy baby part 4

I seem to be walking around the house thinking, ''haven't photographed and blogged that yet'' all the time. We're getting there with our aspiration to make it an interesting place to be in. I think it's safe to say that anyone who likes the minimalist look would probably feel more than a little uneasy in our place.

I'm still crazy about the linen hamper I bought last week, date wise it does seem to be about the 50's, which is very exciting. I think only a vintage fanatic could find a old linen bin ''exciting''. If you missed that post then you can it in all it's loveliness by clicking HERE. The Boy also likes it, how lucky am I that he shares a love of vintage/old/thrifted stuff too?

So this time I have some super, super loveliness to show you.  If you follow me on my facebook page, you will have already seen a sneak preview of some of these gems. I bought this dreamy blue dressing table set for £3! I've never seen one in this pale blue before. I'm a sucker for the colour blue, I'm just drawn to it. I truly hope I never break it as I can't imagine ever finding another one for that price. It has a few chips but for 30's glass it's in very good condition. It's just a treat for the eyes. The seller said it used to be her mother in laws and now belonged to the stall holder. The seller's changed the colour of her bedroom and now this doesn't go. What a sad reason to part with something that's been in the family all those years?

So excited to get a picture that I didn't even take it upstairs to the dressing table

I need to have a 'tidy and reorganise my dressing table' session, so I will post more pictures once I have it all looking fabulous on display. So let's move on to clocks. I bought this 1950's handsome chap recently. He doesn't work at the moment and I don't know if he's fixable, however, I'm not even sure I want to try. I quite like that's it's permanently displaying time for afternoon tea. The long hand also points to the words 'Made in Great Britain' which again, I quite like that the broken clock points to some history. Que collecting broken clocks.... no I can't. Can you imagine though, a wall of old clocks that all show different times? I think that would be a rather interesting feature ...............

Moving on, if I fill the house with broken things like a crazy lady, this next item could be useful to carry my broken stuff when I have to move out. I adore cases. I know I have said this about a a hundred times before, but honestly, I can not explain to you how useful they really are. I use them for storage and they look pretty too.What else can I say to convince you that you need old cases of all shapes and sizes in your life? This time the latest addition is a very cute little vanity case.

I will do a post with all of my cases. They hold my hair rollers, handbags, clothes, scarfs etc. There's no end to the possibilities and they are so much more interesting to look at than a plastic box. Stack them up to create a bedside table (I'm currently doing this!) Not sure what this one will hold yet, maybe my lotions and potions. I will let you know.....
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Marilyn Monroe - Forever beautiful

I'm sure the internet will be a sea of pictures of this beautiful lady. On this day in 1962 the world lost a screen icon. I  swoon every time I see her on screen. I find her just so utterly bewitching I'm going to let the pictures speak for themselves. It's an obvious statement but -  her life proves that being famous with a troubled soul is sadly not a new phenomenon at all.

1st June 1926 - 5th August 1962
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Millinery Marvels

Carmen Miranda

When Princess Beatrice wore 'that' hat to William and Kate's wedding there was mixed reactions. Personally I liked it. Designer Philip Treacey is a genius in my opinion. I like his bold show stopping creations, do I think it was worth £81100.01/ $132,000? No. But, that's what someone paid on ebay for it......

But sculptural hats are nothing new.  When I was researching for the previous post, I came across some amazing images. ( If you missed it, you can catch up by clicking here)

Greta Garbo in the film Ninotchka 1939

The Holiday.1938. It's not very often my eyes are torn away from Carey Grant.
Ginger Rogers. 1930's
Lana Turner 1940 I've no idea what's going on with this design. .....................

Joan Crawford. Proof that plonking a bow on something does not make it prettier....
Audrey Hepburn looking utterly stunning

I've never seen this pic of Audrey Hepburn before, she looks so amazingly elegant. How fantastic is the hat? Talk about standing the test of time, you could wear that design today and it would look current. A timeless design in my opinion. So based on the recent hat activity on this blog, are you tempted to wear them more? I'm definitely going try and get 50's pillbox hat (even if I only wear it to wash up!) Watch this space........
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Want to get ahead.....get a hat?

I know we are struggling a bit with summer here in the U.K, so the dilemma of which style of summer hat suits you may not be a huge priority, so generally speaking what kind of hats do you like to wear whatever the weather? Do you never wear a hat?
Louise Brooks

I like the idea of a wide brimmed floppy sun hat HOWEVER, I'm just a smidgen over 5 foot tall which means that for most of the time people are looking down at me or I am looking up at them. So I can't help but think that to onlookers from above I would look like a fungi. Until I look up to see them, at which point I will either need to tip my head back so far to see from under the floppy brim that I will (probably) fall over or I will need to lift the brim up every time I want to make eye contact........I expect after having to do that a few times said brim will be lifted up with terrifying force and my hacked of face will scare my audience away anyway.

Unlike a very happy looking Marilyn Monroe who makes it look easy.

Faye Dunaway looking beyond cool. Floppy hats it seems, never go out of fashion
 I also feel that my lack of height  rules out more structured wide brims hats as worn be Audrey Hepburn. Also I know hat etiquette for ladies is different from the chaps, unlike them, we don't usually have to take out hat off as soon as we walk indoors, but have you ever been to a wedding where someone several rows forward is wearing a huge hat? This means every one behind keeps swaying to look around them and this swaying motion just moves back along the pews like a wave, as everyone has to move position because the person in front has moved theirs? Etiquette I'm sure suggests that it's polite to remove huge head decorations when they impact on others?

Internet sources say Audry was 1.7m /5 ft 7 inches tall
So what do I wear? Well in summer, quite often nothing....remember this is a hat post so I am talking about my head here! Which isn't ideal when walking in the scorching sun. (Rare I know) On the occasions that I do wear a hat, it's a straw trilby which I've had for  few years now. It doesn't always go with what I'm wearing and on a girl they can look boho/festival, not a bad thing but for me, personally it's not a 'vintage' look. Trilby's (not to be confused with fedora's which have a wider brim)  have been a fave by the boys since...forever. There's plenty of images out there where the old boys of Hollywood sported hats to stylish perfection. Frank Sinatra seems to have virtually lived in one. How I wish men still wore hats! (I also wish singers still looked dapper like this. What are these awful parachute/ nappy trousers all about?)

Frank Sinatra, a big fan of the trilby hat.

Humphrey Bogart with a stylish fedora hat. Notice the wider brim. The fedora, like the trilby can be worn straight or at a jaunty angle.

 I do like a berets. Classic, stylish great for lazy girl hair. You can dress them up with brooches, wear them straight, where them tilted. Versatility, that's what I like.

Lana Turner, her expression conveying that beret wearing is a serious business
I also like little pillbox hats, with netting/veil. I've only got this on at the moment, which is an 80's one I picked up for £1! Worn with the right outfit, I'm thinking black 50's style pin up wiggle dress it could look very femm fatale. I've seen a few gorgeous 50's ones but haven't had the pennies to buy them. I also have no occasions planned to wear such a hat...but I shall not let this small detail stop me of course!

No, I'm not naked. Honest.
And on those days where I aspire to look taller perhaps I should be led by Marlene Dietrich?............

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