Category Archives: Vintage Events

A Dating Dilemma

I almost forgot I owned this frock until I dragged it out this morning to wear for an afternoon of antique-ing. I’ve always found it oddly and irritatingly era-ambigious, so I’m not surprised I put it out of my mind for awhile.

It’s a curious frock. Although I get quite a fierce 1940s vibe, what with the little puff sleeves, not-quite-full skirt, and satisfyingly old-feeling fabric, I can’t quite convince myself it’s 40s, considering how little I paid for it.

Vintage friends and dating extraordinaires, thoughts?

Era-ambigious vintage frock Cambridge, UK | Hair flower Circa Vintage | Belt borrowed from dear Callie | Shoes Macy’s

When I haven’t been obsessing about the era of my floral frock, I’ve been flitting about Sydney as per usual with various Old Hatters in tow. We had a glorious picnic that you can read all about very soon, among other things.

Until next time – bonne weekend, mes ami/es !

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Old Hat’s Highland Fling

Bonjour blog – it’s been awhile! I have splendid splendid photos to share with you from our recent Old Hat vintage social. One of our favourite Old Hat gentlemen (Tim) ordered a pair of tartan pants off Etsy, so naturally, we decided to throw a Highland Fling. Although the tartan pants did not arrive in time (boo!), we had a raucous time nonetheless at The Abercrombie on Broadway.

All our favourite extravagant people came to the social, plus some lovely new friends – all were in tartan, many in capes. Check out the Cape Brigade:

Cape Queens: Me, Emma, Coco, Sophie and Sarah – photo courtesy of Sarah

The lovely Sarah, aka Chronicles of an Eccentric, came along looking splendid. You can read her post on the evening here.

Photo courtesy of Sarah

Dear Coco, who I met at the Fifties Fair last year, and I indulged in a bit of double tartan. It’s so wrong it’s right:

And voila, the whole clan, in various states of readiness for the photo:

Photo courtesy of Sarah

Among the clan you’ll see Emma of Emma Aime, Jesse and Tim of Like Johnny and June, Sarah of Chronicles of an Eccentric, and just a whole lot of attractive, well-dressed people. Also, a shout-out to our friend Emma in the black and teal plaid, who came down from Brisbane especially for Old Hat. Love!

Here’s what I wore:

Early 1950s frock Mint Condition | 1960s cape C’s Flashback | Cocktail hat Scally and Trombone | Seam stockings Honey Birdette | Heels Wittner

I couldn’t resist some tartan-on-tartan, nor did I have enough restraint to forgo a pill box cocktail hat. And as always, I donned a cape (you know they’re my weakness). It all made me feel very Scottish and glamorous and happy.

If you want to come to our next Old Hat event, we’re having a social picnic next Tuesday afternoon (May 8) – visit our Facebook page for all the details. We’re always looking to meet lovely new vintage friends!

Until next time, much tartan love.

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Las Vegas: Elvis, Justin Bieber and other Wax Statues

I have just a couple more Vegas snaps for you before I settle back into chronicling my sartorial life in Sydney again. Despite having been back now for nearly two weeks, my blogging has been so scarce that I’m yet to run out of material. Consequently, this is sort of two outfit posts in one, with an eye on some lovely gentlemen I met in Sin City.

The first set of photos I have for you are artfully posed beside one of my favourite retro gentlemen: dear Elvis. Vegas seems to have a thing for Elvis, actually, which made the souvenir stores quite a bit more tempting than anticipated, and a walk down the strip endlessly exciting. This wax replica of young Elvis stood outside Madame Toussard’s which was, oddly, in my hotel. We had quite a moment:

Cardigan: Louche, London
1950s Puerto Rican skirt: The Attic, Vegas
Necklace: Mother’s
Hair flower: Sportsgirl

I’ve always been skeptical about Madame Toussard’s, but after years of cynicism, I finally made it in. How shamefully touristique! Anyway, enough about the museum, and more about Justin Bieber. Check this out:

I’m afraid I don’t have the outfit credentials for Justin, but I can tell you mine. I’m wearing a delightful Anthropologie frock I picked up when I visited Boston in January, paired with some very plane-appropriate plaits, inspired by Andi B Goode.

Dress: Anthropologie
Cape: SoWa Markets, Boston
Shoes: Bass Shoes
Belt: Review

And so ends the Vegas posts! I do have a guest post on Las Vegas for Aussie on the Road in the works, plus a sneaky trip to Melbourne with the famous lovers of Like Johnny and June to see Dita Von Teese next weekend, but apart from that all is quiet on the Sydney front. I’ll be back soon with updates on all of these things, plus news from the Old Hat picnic extravaganza. In the meantime, have a lovely weekend!

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Outfit Post: Aqua, December 11

I ventured out in this aqua number, sans petticoat (scandal!), last Thursday afternoon for a rendezvous to Newtown. It’s a dress I’ve had for awhile, but the length used to freak me out a little in my less adventurous sartorial days. I’ve recently rediscovered it, to great success.

The dress is by an Australian label called “Lazy Bones“. They have an excellent range of six basic 50s-inspired dresses that are all produced in an array of splendid fabrics such as this aqua floral. There are new fabrics each season, I believe. Lazy Bones also designs fabulous vintage-inspired sleepwear and slips. Check it out!

This week I’ve been:

  • Plotting the next Old Hat gathering (December 18)
  • Working at Becky Sharp’s Vintage Market (more on this later)
  • Watching too much daytime TV, especially the Crime Investigation Channel
  • Reading “On the Road” by Jack Kerouac, aka utter word porn
  • Dreaming of travels to Russia and Eastern Europe

(Kudos to Emma Aime for this inspiring this format of post)


Dress: Lazy Bones
Bolero: Blooms, borrowed from Mother
1950s necklace: Camden Passage Markets, London
1950s headpiece: Mint Condition, Rozelle
Snood: Arthelia’s Attic
1950s bag: Paddington Antique Centre
Seamed stockings: What Katie Did
Shoes: Bloch




Also, check out my superbly-dressed friends Tim and Kath:

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Filed under Fairs, Old Hat, Outfit Posts, Vintage Events

“The Way We Wear” Vintage Fair

I had the good fortune of stumbling upon some employment at a Sydney vintage fair recently: “The Way We Wear” fair at Marrickville on 26-27 November. Considering my “uniform” was a red and white polka dot dress with a bolero and petticoat, I wasn’t exactly a reluctant employee. Imagine my joy upon discovering I was to carry out my duties dressed like this:

Yes, “uniform” indeed.

The duties assigned to Siobhan and I were not limited to manning the door (“don’t forget to enter the lucky door prize competition”); rather, in something of a risky move, we were also billed as the “models” for the Titanic-era fashion show at the fair. Inexperience was no barrier to the impending launch of our modelling careers.

The fashion show was arranged by Fiona, who is custodian of an extensive collection of historical fashions stretching back to the 18th century. It being nearly 100 years since the ill-fated maiden voyage of the Titanic, Fiona was exhibiting an array of Edwardian gowns at the fair which we paraded around in extravagantly. I don’t have photos of the first set of outfits, but here are the three that followed:


Siobhan is wearing the lace gown of a suffragette (notice the purple and green embellishment down the front), and I’m wearing the Sunday best of a poorer passenger on the Titanic.


Siobhan is wearing an exquisite frock which was so fragile after surviving 100 years, and I’m wearing a slightly daring shorter Edwardian gown with fur and wrinkled white socks (how they stopped them wrinkling, I can’t even imagine).


The finale of the fashion show saw us in nightgowns and lingerie, much to the delight of fair patrons. On the left, you can see Siobhan’s outfit is a shout-out to the glamorous ladies who escaped the Titanic in their nightdresses and fur stoles (shame on this lady and her ripped socks). Beside her, I’m wearing the work of a very glamorous Edwardian lingerie designer: a very transparent hobble-skirted petticoat. The old ladies at the back of the hall were particularly fond of this number.

It was an excellent, but very unconventional weekend of employment spent wearing fragile 100-year-old frocks and buying hats from the beautiful stalls. “The Way We Wear” vintage fair will be on again next August, and I understand you can expect some flirty fifties fashions sashaying around the room. In the meantime, I’ll be working at the “Becky Sharp” vintage fashion fair at Paddington RSL on December 10, so if you’re there, come and say hello – I’ll be passing out flyers on the street.

A bientôt, mes amis.

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Filed under Fairs, Vintage Events

Old Hat: the November Vintage Social

The second Old Hat event finally happened! We all gathered Friday night for our November social, and once again a splendid time was had by all.

We had the event at The Green Room Lounge down Enmore Rd, which is a rad 50s bar I’ve spoken of countless times on Ravishing Retro. Commandeering a little corner of the room decked out in mod sofas and coffee tables, we bonded for hours over a great deal of quality cocktails.

Here are some snaps from the evening:


Me, with the gorgeous ladies Jesse and Molly


Nick and Rachael: snuggling and looking glamorous


Bonding with my dear friend Kate, who you may remember from this post


Tim and Jesse (also known as Johnny and June)

And here is The Outfit, which you will recall I dated in my last post. It looked lovely all styled up.


“You can never have too much tartan” – Molly

1960s frock: Mint Condition
Second-hand belt: Zoo Emporium
1950s hat: Mint Condition
Shoes: Milu
Bakelite bangles: thrifted, and from Peppergreen Antiques

We’re planning a festive vintage picnic, so ready yourselves.

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Doris: So Much More than the Girl Next Door

It was a happy day when I discovered there was to be a musical about Doris Day. She’s my Grandma’s heroine of choice, and this love of Doris has naturally filtered through to me. I was sold on Doris from the opening number of “Calamity Jane” when I watched it a year ago – she’s so fierce.

Making up something of a Doris Day Fan Club, Grandma and I went along to “Doris Day: So Much More than the Girl Next Door” at the Lyric Theatre in the the newly refurbished “The Star”. It was terribly exciting. As expected, the crowd seemed to have a fairly high average age, and the merchandise was suitably old-fashioned – we bought Doris Day tea towels.

The show itself was fabulous. Melissa Schneider didn’t impersonate Doris Day, but rather sang her songs as a sort of tribute. She picked excellent Doris songs as well, though perhaps I’m biased because I love “Calamity Jane” with such a passion. I nearly died when she sang “I Just Blew in from the Windy City”; it was so great. Melissa interspersed all this with a commentary on Doris’ life, charting her four failed attempts at marriage, as well as her various artistic pursuits. Melissa was just so likeable, channeling Doris’ sunny disposition. Plus the costumes were divine – very neo-50s.

“Doris” has finished in Sydney now, but I believe it’s off to Brisbane next. Buy a ticket if you have the chance as it’s a fabulous show.


Grandma and I with the “Doris” tea towels.


1960s dress: Camden Passage in London
1930s bolero: Camden Passage in London
1950s necklace: Camden Passage Markets in London
Shoes: Bloch
1950s bag: Brisbane Antique Centre

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