Monday, 31 May 2010

Screamin' Fest - day One

On the Thursday morning we packed our bags and went on the train to Pineda De Mar for the Screamin' Rockabilly Festival. It only took just over an hour to get there and once we had dumped our bags at the hotel, we were off to the beach bar for drinks and rock n roll in the sun! I was meeting fellow blogger Rascal at the Beach Bar, as I had comissioned her to make me a polka tie top from a vintage 40's pattern that she had, which I had read about on her blog. Photo taken from Rascal's blog...isnt it ace? Very me!

What I expected to be a quick hello while I picked up my top, turned into a really fun afternoon spent drinking Sanria and chatting about our shared interests in crafting, car booting, bargains and retro finds. I didnt get any photos from the afternoon as I had a few too many drinks and forgot! After the Beach Bar, Michael and I went back to the hotel and got ready for our first night at the Screamin main hall for the evening entertainment.
Dress - H&M, bow front flip flops - Some random cheap shop! Necklace - £1 from a charity shop.
This is Lil Mo and The Dynaflows - A Doo Wop group from the states. They were very good, but I was not feeling so great after too many drinks during the day - oops! Lesson learned and not repeated for the rest of the hols! More posts from Screamin' tomorrow :)

Im Back!

I'm back from my week long holiday to Barcelona and Screamin' Fest in Pineda De Mar. I had a great time, met some nice people, had lots of nice food, sangria, fun in the sun and got a few bargains too! I will do a few posts on my week as its a bit too much to do all in one. Thanks to the lovely Holly at Temperamental Broad, I now have lots of nice new followers - so hello! and I hope you enjoy reading my blog :) So....first of all Michael (my other half) and I went to Barcelona for 3 days to do some sight seeing and galleries. Michael had never been before so I plotted out a rough idea of the best sights and managed to cram it into the three days! Firstly, here is a picture of our luggage - very easy to spot on the airport carousel!

There is lots of cool Gaudi arcitecture to see in the city, so on our first day, we went to see the Sagria Familia - the multi spired church that was started in 1882, and that is famously unfinished (hence the scaffolding!). It really is a stunning building. You could go up the spires and inside the building, but it was €20 each (about £18/$25)! eek! So we gave that a miss and just had a good look round the outside instead.
We then went to Parc Guell - which was lovely but very very busy..the photos didnt come out too well and too many people on the shots so I pinched one off the website ;)

It is well worth a visit though if you should go.....just be warned that it is a long walk up a big hill to get there!
On day two, we went to the harbour at Port Vell, and then did some wandering around the old gothic quarter that is the Barri Gotic. There are lots of little galleries, antique shops and boutiques in this area - and I managed to get some very cool flamenco shoes for only €10 (about £9/$13) which are pink and black polka dot with a nice low heel (im rubbish at walking in heels so these are perfect!)
On our last day, we went to the famous market - Mercat de la Boqueria - which sells every food, drink and gormet chocolate that you can think of. Amazing and yummy! We then wandered round the El Raval area - home to lots of cool vintage shops and boutiques. Great to look round and lots of cool stuff, but really overpriced so no purchases here! We then went to MACBA (Museu d’Art Contemporani de Barcelona) – modern art museum to have a look at the latest collections. To be honest, the art was interesting, but the super modern building itself was more facinating in the fact that it lent itself very well to some lovely photos. Here are a couple of my favorite shots taken by Michael
And to finish off, this is a photo of the view from our boutique (ie not posh - but 'quirky'!) hotel room
The building opposite had some really stunning wrought iron baloconies and stonework, very typical of the Gracia area that we stayed in. Barcelona is a great city - my advise for anyone going is to use the metro (underground system) as it is super clean, fast and cheap and you can zip about here there and everywhere and see all the sights. Oh, and have some Tapas of course!

Sunday, 23 May 2010

Last nights outfit & todays car booty!

Well, what a scorcher we have been having in England this weekend! The heatwave has well and truly hit! Last night Michael and I went out with our friends for a curry and drinks. We had a great evening and it was so nice to not take a coat or cardi! This is what I wore....

Eiffel tower print playsuit - £1 from a car boot! Bag - Bettie Page Clothing. I LOVE my cadillac bag :)
I didnt have too muct to drink and so we were up early for some car booting this morning. As the weather was so hot - the car boot was HUGE and I got lots of goodies.....

Vintage carved earrings - 20p

Vintage shoes - never been worn! - £1

Vintage gingham pleat skirt - £1

Vintage 60s cherry print circle skirt - £1
And a close up of the fabric - cool!

Vintage bag - 50p. Customised with some of my own Dolly Cool Swallow patches :)
And last but not least - a vintage pyrex glass  - 10p. This one will replace the one I broke a few weeks ago!
Well, we are off to Barcelona, and Screamin fest tomorrow so no posts for a week...but I will be taking lots of snaps and will be doing a full report when I get back! :)

Thursday, 20 May 2010

New Day of the Dead circle skirt and earrings!

A few weeks ago, I commissioned a fellow crafting friend - and talented seamstress - Jen, to make me a reversable circle skirt out of some cool Alexander Henry fabric. One side to be red skull bandana fabric, one side to be Day of the Dead skull print. I went for coffee and to pick up my skirt this morning and I was so happy when I saw my fabulous skirt! Jen did such a great job. I dont know which side to wear first! Here is me in both sides of the skirt. Crappy photos I know, got to get the hang of the self timer on the camera!

And a close
up of the fabric  -
Isnt it cool?!

And side two.....

And a fabric close
up - love it!

While I was at Jen's, she was showing me some new fabric and charms that she had bought from the states, and when I saw some silver plated Day of the Dead skull charms - I just had to buy a couple from her to make myself some earrings with!

Sunday, 16 May 2010

Haworth 1940s weekend

Today, Michael and I went to the Haworth 40s weekend in West Yorkshire. (Haworth is of course famous as the Bronte sisters lived there, and wrote Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights whilst living at the Parsonage.)

I was originally going to wear my vintage sailor dress and vintage shoes - but my feet were hurting from last night so I wore my Freddies high waisted jeans and 40s repro top with some black and white flats. I'm so glad I did because we had to walk a long way - and there were lots of cobbles!

The village is very small and quaint - and VERY busy! It was such a good atmostphere though - the sun was shining and everywhere was decorated with bunting and 40's posters and props. There were lots of people dressed up - everything from full dress coats, hats and furs to GI uniforms, policemen and land girls. We had planned to have a pub lunch - but the pubs were so full - or had ran out of food - so we walked a bit further out of the village and had the most delicious fish and chips sat in the sun - how very British!

Michael had a great time taking lots of photos in black and white. He likes to take observational photos rather than posed, and he got some great shots. Here are some photos from the day....B&W by Michael, Colour by me!
Jeans and 40s repro top: Freddies. Bangles and Earrings - vintage bakelite. Glasses - Vintage 1950's from Dead Mens Spex. Hair in victory rolls - well, it was a 40s event!
Vintage Bus

Shot of the high street - busy and bunting!

This is a great photo! The baby in the pram was a doll though which was a bit creepy!

My fave photo that I took today. Everyone in vintage gear sat outside a nice old pub enjoying summer drinks

One of the houses on the main street. Everyone had made a real effort to make it look authentic

One of the singers - she was doing Vera Lynn and Edith Piaf covers on a balcony above the main street

I think this is my fave photos of Michaels. It just captures the moment and looks like it could be a genuine old photo

I also like this one that Michael took of me walking up the street - you can see my victory rolls :)

Lets Get Shipwreaked!

Just a quick post from last night.....we went out for a Thai meal in Manchester and I wore my new hawaiian dress by Criminal Damage, designed by my friend Kate. I love the shape - based on an original vintage pattern, and the print - because it fuses traditional hawaiian elements like the colours, hibiscus, palm trees etc. but it has a twist as it also has pirate ships, 'Lets get shipwrecked' banners and little skulls wearing sailor hats! I LOVE this dress!

Me! - Dress; Criminal Damage. Bangles and earrings; vintage bakelite from Ebay and Etsy.

And a close up of the print - Lets get shipwrecked!!

Thursday, 13 May 2010

Dolly Cool's got Attitude!

At the weekend I received some exciting post. This was in the form of the Summer 2010 Attitude Clothing which some of my products are featured! Attitude are one of my newest stockists and I was thrilled when they called to let me know that Dolly Cool is selling well for them and they had featured me in their summer catalogue.

I have been designing for the 'Alternative' market for about 4 and half years now (I was the girlswear designer at Underground Shoes for 2.5 yrs, Draven Shoes - freelance work - and at present, Too Fast), and have had products that I have designed in a number of catalogues and magazines before, but this time is all the more pleasing because its my own brand.

I work really hard to make Dolly Cool - its my baby! - and i'm so glad that it had been a success and that i'm slowly getting more and more this space for world domination!! ;)
The things with the BIG PINK STARS round them are mine! :)

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

A good old spring clean!

Today I have been (in the breaks I have been taking from working!) having a good old spring clean. I don't like a sparce lifeless house, and I do have nic nacs and "stuff" around - but you know when you just have a moment when you think Aaarrrghh! TOO MUCH STUFF! Well, thats what happened today.

I started by sorting out my wardrobes - I was being ruthless - and I got 4 large bags of clothes and shoes for the charity shop (2 bags went to Salvation Army, 2 bags went to Breast Cancer Care).

I then had a good sort through my make up bag and bathroom cabinet - and got rid of at least half of it! I am amazed by how many bottles I had with about half a cm in the bottom and perfume bottles with about a squirt left in!  There is more to do, but that was enough for today. I cetainly feel much better for it and can now start on replenishing the stock ;-)

Sunday, 9 May 2010

Car Booty - 60s glasses

Today we got up and went to two large car boot sales. I'm dissapointed to report that the first one was rubbish  - too many market traders, and the second one was a bit better although not a patch on last weeks haul! All I spent today was 50p on a pair of 1960's sunflower print glasses. Here they are......
(I do use everything I buy, by the way - all my retro homeware gets used daily!)

Saturday, 8 May 2010

Retro hair try out!

This morning as I was scrolling through my blogroll* (A list of other blogs that a blogger might recommend by providing links to them usually in a sidebar list), I came across a pin curl up doo on The Freelancer's Fashion blog.
Seeing as im dying my hair today and it has 2 days of not being washed, I thought I would give it a go! This is due to the fact that I'm off to a rockabilly festival in two weeks and at present, can only successfully do 2 retro hairstyles - a bandana updo (easy!) and victory rolls (not so easy!). I taught myself to do victory rolls last year by watching this tutorial by Amanda Hallay of how to do '1940s hair in under 5 minutes'. I especially liked her tutorial as she has fine hair like me, and used rats to do her rolls. Something that I use or my hair falls really flat. I had to buy the rats from the USA as they don't sell them here. If you go on ebay, search for 'Foam Foundations' to find some :). I can successfully do my hair like this now, and always get compliments when I wear it like that, so they cant look too bad!
Anyway - I had a go at doing the pincurl up doo a-la Freelancers Fashion blog and this is the result.....its a little bit messy but not bad for a first go. I also usually blow roll my fringe but havent done that today!
From the front....

The top....

The side and....
The back! Like I said, bit messy to start with but will keep practising! :)

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Lookie what the postman brought me today!

I love getting post! Im always buying bits and bats online. I buy all my jewellery supplies online, and I'm always scouring Ebay and Etsy for bargains so I usually get something more or less every day. I was super pleased today when the postman came, as he brought me goodies...
Double red hibiscus hair clip £2 from Ebay. This is for my hols to go with my new red and white hawaiian dress :)

My butterscotch bakelite spacer bangle - $12.00 Ebay. The other two came last week from New York and the butterscotch one was from Arizona. I LOVE them! They have a really nice swirl pattern in all of them :)

Red and white polka vintage shirt - $5 Etsy. Washed straight away and hung out to dry in my garden. Love it! Cant wait to wear!

Monday, 3 May 2010

If I Knew You Were Comin' I'd've Baked A Cake!

Today was a bank holiday in England, so I took a well needed day off and went for lunch with Michael in our local town. The weather was quite poor so we didnt stay out too long before picking up a few ingredients on the way home, and I baked a Sticky Stem Ginger cake with Lime Icing.
The recipe says to do lemon icing, but I like lime and think it goes well with ginger so I amended it a bit!
Here are a few pics....
                                                                   Me in mid bake!

Dry ingredients - lots of yummy ginger, cinnamon, mixed spice and stem ginger

Wet ingredients. A melting pot of golden syrup, treacle, sugar and milk. Smelt divine... wanted to drink it!

All mixed together.....mmmm smelt so nice!

Making the lime drizzle - lots of lime zest and lime juice to mix with the icing sugar

TA-DA! The finished article. Cant wait to eat a large slab with a cup of tea!