Saturday, October 29, 2011

A Crafty Witch!

During my "Save the Vintage!" Pre-Halloween thrift store crusade, I picked up an adorable ribboned 1950s petticoat slip (w/multiple layers of lace and crinoline) for ~$2. It buttoned up the side with metal snaps, and the frayed tag read "An Original by Cherie." It was perfect in every way, with the exception that it was about 4 inches too wide for my little waist! So, I purchased some elastic at the craft store yesterday, and I made myself an elastic waist on the slip (removing the snaps on the side)! Now it fits perfectly, and looks great under my Halloween costume - a vintage 1940s black velvet "ballerina" dress with A-line skirt and 3/4 sleeves.

To top my outfit off, I'm pairing all of this with my 1930s pointed-crown hat,

sequined ankle boots, along with my Juliana D&E necklace,

Weiss bracelet,

and some fab rhinestone earrings!

Happy Samhain, All!
A Thousand Blessings on You & Yours!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Friends From Afar

It always amazes me how you can have such kind friends, even ones that live far away. Yesterday, I received the most enormous care package from one such friend, and it was like Christmas in October when I opened the box! Shiny jewelry, old bottles, vintage hats and gloves, and more! The two most amazing gifts were a beautiful brocade dressing gown with padded shoulders, and (drum roll, please) the most AMAZING embroidered kimono (with long, trailing sleeves) I have ever SEEN!

The poor kimono needs a great deal of work - most of the embroidery is accounted for but hanging loose,

there is a large vertical tear in the bottom,

the robe was covered with numerous gold star stickers that - when peeled off after soaking - took some of the fabric off with them, etc. So, the robe is totally salvageable, but will most definitely be a project! That being said, it's absolutely worth it in my mind to get it back into wearable condition. I think the photos below will show you why...

I took these before doing any cleaning to the robe. Currently, it's drying on towels near the wood stove fire after having been gently handwashed. I will press the wrinkles out later today, and start on the repair work this weekend.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Halloween Discount in our Etsy Store!

To celebrate this spooky holiday, we are offering a coupon for 20% off of the price of your purchase (not including shipping). Just enter the code "HALLOWEEN20" at checkout!

We have a lot of wonderful vintage items in our Etsy store - go check it out!

Happy shopping!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Lilly Dache Article from LIFE Magazine (September 13th, 1937)

My scanner is broken, so forgive the piecemeal fashion of the pictures. In my fabulous 1937 LIFE magazine, there is a 2-page article about Lilly Dache's African hat inspiration! Please click on the pictures below to enlarge and read the article...

Vintage Scores

Last weekend was a very good weekend for cheap vintage finds (my favorite kind)! I purchased a bag of Solo Goody hair clips in assorted sizes for $4.25 (these are getting harder and harder to find, and very expensive when you do!), and a pair of gorgeous signed WEISS earrings for $10!

The earrings are missing one stone, and at some point the back came off and was re-soldered slightly lower than the original (making the clips slightly uneven), but this is hardly noticeable and, in any case, they are absolutely STUNNING! The earrings are roughly 4 inches long, have NO darkened stones, and the epitome of shiny BLING!

Goodbye Summer, Hello...WINTER?

Looks like we're skipping Fall and going straight into winter this year! At least that's how it felt this morning when we woke up to a chilly house and a thermometer reading 27 degrees outside! I believe we are sidestepping our (late) first frost this year, and instead just getting a first FREEZE.

I could tell we were in for a batch of very cold weather soon. We had (up until this point) been experiencing what I believe is termed an "Indian Summer," where you basically don't get a Fall so much as a continuation of summer in more moderate temperatures. The oak trees had been holding onto their leaves, and only dropping a few acorns through most of September and the first half of October. However, the past 4-5 days or so, I noticed that the oak trees were suddenly dumping their leaves and (enormous) acorns in huge amounts! I knew at that point that the cold was coming...and I can't remember if large acorns mean a hard winter or a moderate one? I suppose we'll find out.

The good news is that the wood stoves have been cleaned, and there was a stack of kindling and fire wood waiting outside the back door. At least starting a fire and warming up the house was easy this morning. And thankfully, I had brought in my citrus trees and late-season peppers last night, and remembered to set up the portable heater in the greenhouse!

Morning chores at 27 degrees were not fun. I forgot what a drag farm chores are in the winter time, especially when it comes to icy water buckets and frozen hoses! I am a child of the sun and heat in SO many ways...


Sunday, October 23, 2011

Stitch 'N' Bitch

A few weeks ago, I picked up the most adorable 1950s prom dress with built-in crinoline at the thrift store (in the costume section - go figure!) for $1.50. It is a red-and-white-striped halter dress, but had the unfortunate luck of being a 28" bust and a 24" waist...a bit too small even for me! So last Friday I stitched in two matching panels on either side of the zipper, thereby expanding it enough for me to wear! Not my best work, but good enough for a $1.50 dress! I accidentally made the bust a little larger than I wanted, but it's still wearable...just goes to show that you shouldn't sew or take measurements at the end of a long day (and with a pounding headache!). However, with only moderate levels of cursing, I now have another fabulous vintage dress to add to my closet collection!!

You're A DOLL!

Stopped by the antiques show today at the Medford Armory, and purchased this lovely little late 1930s "doll" or "toy tilt" hat for $36 (talked the lady down from the ridiculous $45 she wanted - oh, she also had this mismarked as being from the 1920s)! Normally, this hat would be far too plain for my tastes, but I LOVE toy tilt hats - which are getting harder and harder to find! - especially the tiny ones like this! The hat is decorated with two bows, and the brim angles to a bit of a point in back.

The label reads "Frank R. Jelleff Inc." Lucky for me, Wikipedia has a great article about the company! You can read it HERE.

Now, I need to make lots of sales in my Etsy store so that I can pay Ryan back the $26 I stole from him to purchase this! *laughing*

Proof That We CAN Be Social

(when forced, and only assuming there is alcohol involved!)

Visited the recently-opened Red Lily Vineyard for some of the most amazing Viognier I have ever tasted!

Oh, and here is what happens when the camera's autotimer goes off and Ryan isn't ready...*laughing*

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Girl Power!

The tray of Anasazi corn kernels was finally dry enough for grinding today, so I brought out our beloved handmill and started cranking away! I forgot how insanely ridiculous it is to grind cornmeal by hand, especially on the fine flour setting. I was by myself, and had to take frequent arm breaks (it's been a whole year since I last did this, after all!), so it took me roughly 2 hours to grind all of the Anasazi corn. However, the payoff for that effort (besides an insanely awesome arm muscle workout) was 6 cups of beautiful pink cornmeal! I can't wait to grind the Oaxacan corn, which makes a lovely green cornmeal, and then maybe layer the two cornmeals in jars for decorative holiday gifts!

For those who are curious about grinding your own flour, here is a video we made last year showing me using our mill.

To celebrate my hard labor and the first cornmeal of the season, I am baking some "Rye 'n' Injun Bread" from the Little House Cookbook!

Saturday, October 15, 2011


We finally did it! - Our Etsy store is now live!


Only have a couple of items currently listed, but the goal is to get about 50 listed in the next few days. With all of the picture-taking, measuring, recording, etc., required to list each item, I have new respect for the other lovely ladies out there who do this full time. Wow...

One of the goals of this Etsy store (besides helping to fund the hat/woodworking hand tool addiction) is to offer vintage clothing at affordable prices. One or two items might be expensive, but that is generally because we had to shell out a pretty penny to get it. For the most part, I think you'll find our items priced very reasonably.

Amongst other things currently listed are an AMAZING 1930s red velvet dressing gown and a 1960s red velvet dress that would be just perfect for a Christmas party! Buy it soon before I decide to keep it...

To celebrate our Etsy store's Grand Opening, we are offering 10% off of any item in the store (this does not include shipping charges). Enter the coupon code "WELCOME10" at checkout to obtain the discount!

Look for more items each day...I have some great (vintage) holiday party outfits coming into the store soon, as well as lots of hats, vintage/antique books and cookbooks, vintage signed jewelry, etc. Eventually, you will also be able to purchase our line of homemade herbal salves and soaps year round!!

Thanks for the continued patronage and happy shopping!

Oh, here are some sneaks of what I have yet to list...

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Oh, And One More Thing!

For the Etsy store, from my personal collection...

It was SO hard to convince myself to part with this dress, but I've owned it for over a year and haven't worn it out once. So, I am offering it to someone who will take it out on the town like it was meant to be worn!

This is a 1960s lemon yellow dress with sequined border and attached train! It has a high front and a dropped back. You'll feel like a Greek goddess wearing this!

Now, the store should be live by the end of this weekend, all things going well (if not, it's because I died of exhaustion from hauling two literal tons of hay this weekend). If I make a few sales (to justify this experiment to both myself and my husband), I'll start putting out the really nice 1920s and 1930s dresses I have hiding in my closet! *wink* Just as an inducement to you all...

My Young Viewpoint

Another beautiful vintage score at the thrift store yesterday! This time a late 1940s/early 1950s "Young Viewpoint" black dress with bead/sequin detailing on the collar.

It is lovely, and has 3/4 length sleeves, padded shoulders, belted waist (though it's missing the belt, it does have the belt loops and was clearly meant to be worn with a belt), flared skirt, and metal side zipper. I LOVE IT! The problem is that I don't know if I can part with it for the Etsy store...*sigh* This is the problem of being both a vintage clothing seller and lover. I don't know how those other lovely ladies on Etsy do it! I suppose there comes a point in time where you run out of closet space...?

Anywho, the pictures are a tad washed out from the sunshine, but as I said, it's a lovely black dress. Material appears to be some sort of taffeta (just a guess - goodness knows I'm NO fabric expert! But it makes that rustling noise I always associate with taffeta).

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Etsy Sneaks

Trying out my new dress form model...this is the best I can manage for now as far as lighting and location. That's the one major complaint I have about our camera - it always makes things appear too dark and/or washed out (and the flash always waaaaaaaaay washes everything out!). Anywho, here are some of the dress items that will be going into the store...

Cheongsam Dress w/matching Bolero Jacket

1950s red wool felt swing jacket with great bell sleeves!

1960s purple lace dress with beaded/tasseled shawl collar

1960s lace & velvet dress

1960s/1970s VIBRANT psychedelic flower dress!

1960s paisley dress with keyhole cutout at collar and matching belt

1970s Mother-of-the-Bride halter dress with detachable sheer cape