Category Archives: Eat/Drink

Sabra, The Blueberry Pie

I had the exquisite pleasure of meeting Sabra The Blueberry Pie over the weekend: the first vintage girl I’ve managed to seek out in Lyon. The vintage blogging world is truly a wonderful thing. Sabra caught the train up from Grenoble to spend the day with me, and I totally fell in love. She’s like a French version of me.

We “brunched” in la Croix Rousse. I use inverted commas for its questionable brunch status (see figure 1.1):

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Scrambled eggs, pancakes, fruit, salad, yoghurt, cheese. French people are confused about brunch. But it was brunch nonetheless! Here I am having tea:

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And here is Sabra, la magnifique:

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The café where we brunched was actually adorable. BEYOND adorable. And sooo retrooooo you guys.

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Obligatory post-feminist discourse outfit shots in the retro café:

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We went vintage shopping at Carrie Bradshop: a marvellous vintage boutique on Rue Romarin in the 1er. Most importantly, the name. It was a glorious explosion of costume jewellery and retro frocks. We played for awhile!

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We also visited Le Cabinet des Curieuses, which is just so-so fabulous. I think I’ll write an entire post on this boutique of dreams, practically next door to Carrie Bradshop. The lovely X’tatix Doll keeps shop, attending to all your reproduction vintage and vintage lingerie needs. Looooove! Some photos to come another day, but in the meantime, look at this EXTRAVAGANT boudoir robe I swanned around in for awhile. It’s sort of to die for.

[Update: if you’re interested in the fabulous robe, it’s a unique piece by Melle Théo Legrand, who you can totally look up here].

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C’est tout pour aujourd’hui. I am so content to have made the acquaintance of Sabra. Meeting hybrid vintage/feminist types always gives me so much joy. And there will be more Sabra shenanigans in 2013! I’m off to Paris in April to see her perform at a festival of burlesque as The Blueberry Pie, and there will be visits in between.

So much love for the blogosphere. If you’re a blogger in France, or anywhere nearby, let’s have tea! It will be magical.

Gros bisous de Lyon,

Michelle

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Vintage Fangirling Rural Australia

I’m back in Australia, but away again – this time visiting Grandma and co. in the country for family Christmas. I’m entirely a city girl, but I’m willing to sacrifice reliable wifi for country antiquing and family time every now and then. The country always sends me into reveries, what with the stuck-in-the-50s vibes of some little towns. Rural Australia is peculiar and adorable.

I’m on the North Coast of NSW, where the nearest “town centre” is a sleepy strip of shops in Macksville. It’s totally daggy, but there is much old-fashioned charm. The Bridge Café, the milk bar by the river, always brings out the vintage fangirl in me. It’s all original and fabulous and oh-so-kitsch. Still the same fifties diner fit-out, still the same classic menu (vanilla malt milkshakes, devonshire tea). Mother remembers it all the way back to the 60s. That is many, many decades of milkshakes.

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Ugh.

After consuming several litres of dairy, I went into the Macksville antique store, which is probably one of my favourite antique stores ever. In the country vintage isn’t so expensive, and there are all sorts of fun treats: little record players, boxes of old newspaper clippings… It being the country means there are wonderful/strange things to find too: vintage ear muffs. Such delights!

I’m trying desperately to deal with the heat, and so it is that I swanned around in this era-indeterminate cotton square dance frock for the afternoon. I even managed to keep my lipstick from melting for a few hours. Small victories.

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More to come on my rural immersion. So many nautical frocks, so little time.

Michelle

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Darcy Society’s Rosings Tea

Mine was a particularly glamorous weekend, what with an Old Hat soirée Friday evening, and then a Darcy Society tea Saturday afternoon. It was all seam stockings and high heels and lipstick for a good 48 hours there: a very enjoyable blur.

Darcy Soc’s “Rosings Tea” made for a marvellous afternoon of sweet things and tiny sandwiches. Period drama enthusiasts are excellent banterers, dropping casual references to “Persuasion” and “Emma” into conversation at the most wonderfully inopportune moments.

I have splendid splendid photos from Darcy Soc’s “Rosings Tea” thanks to the lovely Vanessa Low of The Monday Issue, who was snapping the crowd as well as the very extravagant Victoria Room décor. It’s an aesthetic feast – High Tea porn, I’d say.

Voilà, the photos – many thanks to Vanessa:

And here is The Fashion (that’s the very glamorous Darcy Soc president Miranda beside me):

Frock Anthropologie | Cardigan Alannah Hill | 1950s brooch SoWa Markets, Boston | 1950s hat Melbourne | Shoes Wittner

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It’s Always a Mojito Moment

Mojitos top my list of classic cocktails; they’re always classy and always delicious. I’ve had countless mojitos in my time as a legal drinking adult, and save for one unfortunate incident with a dark rum mojito, they are yet to disappoint me.

Apart from being delicious, the mojito has always seemed to me a particularly old-fashioned drink. Having investigated this further, I have discovered that the drink has a very illustrious history. It seems Ernest Hemingway himself was devoted to the mojito after it was first mixed up in Cuba in the 40s; and Ernest Hemingway was a very dapper man. Legend has it that he would frequent Bodeguita de Medio, a bar in Havana, where he would take his mojitos without sugar, but with a twist of grapefruit. Oh Hemingway. I feel like his literary spirit must linger amid the other spirits that mingle to create the mojito I continue to enjoy in 2011. Just a theory.

Not all mojitos were created equal. That is why I popped into the Green Room Lounge Bar in Enmore with my friend Alyssa last Friday night, for the mojitos there are perfect concoctions. We had a lovely mojito date, spending happy hour in earnest discussions of travel, lingerie, blogging and the like. Speaking of which, you can check out Alyssa’s blog here.




Dress: Sarah-Jane
Cardigan: Topshop
1950s bakelite bangles: Peppergreen Antiques, Berrima
Belt: Dangerfield
1950s necklace: Camden Passage markets, London
Hair flower: Sportsgirl

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Cute Café: Cabinessence, Brisbane

I visited the most divine café when I was in Brisbane called “Cabinessence”. It wasn’t the only adorable café I happened across in Brisbane, but it was certainly one of the most adorable cafés.

Cabinessence is a pleasant amble out of Paddington CBD down a few leafy residential streets. It had a very lazy weekend vibe to it which suited my own very lazy weekend quite nicely. Apart from myself, the place seemed to be frequented by an ongoing trickle of regulars, all of whom chattered amongst themselves as well as with the friendly baristas. Some just popped in for coffee; others settled down on one of the bar stools or sofas and whiled the time away.

I chose to settle down because I am a lady of leisure and have nothing but time.


The decor is so cute and sort of has a 50s feel with certain pieces. I particularly love the tiki bamboo bar stools. It’s all very casual, but doesn’t lack any charm.


I ordered iced coffee as an antidote to the frightfully warm day (I don’t deal well with heat), and it came in this super-cute cocktail shaker. Cabinessence does the kitsch, mis-matched tableware thing very well – the souvenir spoon was an especially nice touch. Plus the coffee was spectacular.


Cabinessence doesn’t do food apart from toast, but when the toast is this great, I suppose there isn’t really a need to expand the menu. There is a choice between avocado or tomato, as well as an array of spreads and such. Seeing as avocado is my life, I obviously chose it as my topping. They put on a nice thick layer, not skimping as one might expect (the world usually doesn’t love avocado as much as I proclaim to).

I sat there for a good half hour or so enjoying the afternoon. If you need somewhere pleasant to sit, and you’re willing to walk up a somewhat steep incline to get there, Cabinessence is ideal. Brisbanites: you should visit Cabinessence, pronto.

117 Enoggera Tce,
Paddington, Brisbane

Cabinessence on Urbanspoon

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Five Eliza, Sydney Fringe Festival

“Five Eliza” is the pop up bar in Sydney for the next fortnight as part of the Sydney Fringe Festival, and it’s so sultry with its 1920s speakeasy aesthetic that I almost wish it were illegal for authenticity. Last night I sauntered into Five Eliza with some friends and was fiercely pleased by it all. It’s in Newtown, in an old ballroom belonging to Newtown School of the Arts. If you turn down the laneway beside Zanzibar, you’ll find it up a dirty little staircase illuminated by a red lamp (Roooxanne).

Enter the room, and if you can see clearly in the dim lighting, you’ll discover a room kitted out in extravagant armchairs, antique side tables and seductive lamps. The bar in the corner is staffed by volunteers, and the cocktails are divine. My favourite was “Salvatore’s Secret”, which was orange marmalade flavoured and served with two pieces of buttered toast. Other highlights were the “Pro-inhibition Juice” and kitsch bottles of Pipsqueak cider. ’twas all rather cheap as well, with cocktails only $10-15, the most expensive involving Absinthe (one such beverage was called “The Pantie Dropper”).

All the while, we were serenaded by the delightful Lily Dior, who was beautifully dressed and performed a repertoire of very mood-appropriate jazz songs. A table of particularly keen visitors to Five Eliza began to salsa dance and lindy hop rather extravagantly, to the amusement of the room. I have an inkling that they might have been into the Absinthe punch.

If you have an evening spare, eschew any other venue in favour of Five Eliza. You ought to experience it before Sydney Fringe Festival ends on October 2.

Dress – Basque, Myer (circa 2009)
Cardigan – Alannah Hill, current season
Belt – Alannah Hill, current season
Stockings – “Leg Avenue”
Shoes – “Office”, purchase in Cambridge, UK
Necklace – vintage 50s costume jewellery, purchased in Camden Passage, UK

And here are some photos from inside Five Eliza, converted into sepia because fake old-fashioned photographs are better than no old-fashioned photographs.


In addition to this, I have some photos from the morning. I suppose my point in posting these is to show off my new fringe technique (my victory rolls weren’t flawless, but seriously friends, check out that perfectly coiffed fringe), and my stockings. The stockings came into my life on Monday in a pre-swing dancing shopping expedition. Deceptively, the stockings are in fact fishnets, making them a comfortable version of seam stockings for the warmer seasons. They’re made by Leg Avenue, and though I bought them at Retrospec’d in Newtown, I daresay you could order online somewhere. I heartily recommend them!


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The Mutual Appreciation Society: Thursday Night Bonding

Seeing as no self-respecting Arts student has class on Fridays, we go all out on Thursday nights for a post-torturous week bonding session. This involves several hours of a group of very like-minded people agreeing with each other quite vehemently about an array of subjects over pints of cider. For this reason, we have termed the group that meets on Thursdays “The Mutual Appreciation Society”. It is exactly that.

Part of our like-mindedness comes from our snappy dressing, so I now present to you some excellent snapshots of our stylish rendezvous this week. We went to “The Courthouse” in Newtown, but then ventured up Enmore Rd to visit “The Green Room Lounge”, which is a delightful 50s bar.

It seems that the crowds are yet to discover “The Green Room Lounge”; it was curiously empty for a Thursday night, which is saddening. The decor is entirely 50s in that pleasant mid-century modern style, and it’s all very calming when you settle down on one of the sofas in the dim lighting. At the far end of the room old movies are screening with subtitles on an endless loop. While we were there “Annie” played, and then “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”. Everything was so old-fashioned! The cocktails were also fabulous, with an extensive list stapled into a faux-movie program. I want to make this place our haunt.


I wore an extravagant outfit to uni this day. I braved a particularly poofy petticoat, which confused some passersby not used to dodging prominent skirts. The top I wore with this outfit is also deceiving – ’tis a dress! I’m a sly one. Here are the details:

Dress/Top – “Betty Page Clothing”, bought at “Faster Pussycat” in Newtown, Sydney
Skirt – vintage 50s, bought in Portland, Oregon
Belt – Alannah Hill
Hair flowers – Sportsgirl


Here we have the rather splendid Jesse, who was inspiring me with her pants ensemble – I’m not brave enough for pants yet (it’s been a few years). In this photo (check out the furniture in the bar!) she has donned Nick’s amazing bomber jacket, of which I am terribly envious.


Finally, check out the men in our contingent. Suspenders and bow ties all ’round! I’m proud to know such dapper men.

The Green Room Lounge on Urbanspoon

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