Okay, so I cannot get the video to play here, you’ll have to click the link. But please do, it’s great. Trust me.

Vintage Style. How broad of a term that unites us all the dainty floral print tea dress edwarian girl,  to the exotic yet smooth and mesmerizing Josephine Baker  and 20’s vamp loving ladies, to the fierce glamour queens of the 30s and 40’s, (is there a better word to define Marlene Dietrich , Joan Crawford, Lena Horne, and Rita, to the 50’s gals who found the perfect combination of  pretty and sultry, (Marilyn, Dorothy, Lana, Elsabeth, the 60’s gave us a new, modern elegant, but strong, Jane Fonda, both Hepburns, Rita Moreno, Faye Dunaway and Brigitte Bardow. Even the 70’s gave us some bad ass ladies Bianca Jagger, Lauren Hutton, Debbie Harry and don’t forget Diana Ross.

Just in case you didn’t notice media allowed us only one or two ladies of color each decade. And not many of those. Not a lot of images for us vintage hounds to pore over.  And these are huge celebrities we’re talking about.  I love hollywood glamour shots as much as the next gal but I find street style much more inspiring(and attainable)  Let’s face it, I’m not going to many black tie events these days. For inspiration I want to see what the nurses, teachers, even housewives were doing on their well deserved nights out.  Images like this are hard to find, even harder to find with women of color. If you haven’t already, try looking in a few different places. You’ll be glad you did.

Also you can check out bvikkivintage a fabulous site with tons of vintage style images featuring African Americans. Also try doing a google search of harlem 1930’s and 1940’s images. Could it get any smoother than that?  Check out Maria Montez, Dolores Del Rio. See where you go from there and how you’re inspired.

Here’s a taste of showbiz, featured list after the jump


Published in: on October 19, 2010 at 2:12 pm  Leave a Comment  

Haven’t we all done this at least once? Marilyn Monroe Make Up

Marilyn was a genius with her makeup. Hers is probably the most imitated make up in the world .  I’ve done a bit of research and here’s what I think she did.

Face, creamy, opaque, set with loose powder.

Eyeshadow , sometimes white,sometimes a cream shade all over with  a darker shade of brown contouring the crease. Color was mostly matte, sometimes shimmery. I only had shimmery so this is what I used.

Eyeliners. Top, was dark brown liquid liner extended with a wing. Sometimes there is a very think gold line above this. On the bottom, pencil again dark brown, was applied at the base of the lower lashes. Also she did not connect this  bottom line to the top, she left a gap between the bottom line and the top. Sort of like parallel lines. In between the liner line was white, not sure if this was shadow or liner, I used shadow.

Eyelashes, Strip lash cut in half, applied to outed edge, not totally on lash line. More in sort of a straight line. This enhanced the heavy lidded ‘bedroom eyes” look she’s famous for. I didn’t do a fake lash in the pic, I think the glue is bad for your lashes, I only wear them on SUPER special occasions. Mascara on top, Sometimes she wore it on the bottom as well most often not.

Blush was natural pinky color applied to apples and blended.

Highlighter not sure what she used, probably eyeshadow, I used a shimmery loose white powder. Applied to temples tip of nose, cheekbones, and the little I call it divit above the cupids bow and the inner corner of eye.


It’s said she mixed three different reds plus gloss, I used one and gloss. she extended her line above her natural line a bit on the upper sides and bottom. She rounded the shape. Besides red, the color she wore most often was a medium creamy pink with no shimmer.  I actually prefer her in this color.

Eyebrows hers were typical of the time sort of squared in the beginning, a sharp arch. I believe she used a brow powder. Mine are much thinner,but I tried to get the same shape.  I used a taupe pencil, it was all I had.

Beauty mark of course, i did mine a bit smaller than hers and as my children pointed out to me, mine is on the wrong side.

You can check out my attempt after the jump (more…)

Published in: on October 18, 2010 at 12:49 pm  Leave a Comment  

Heyday Give Away!


Want that dress? Me too. Happily we both have a shot at it. The super talented Shona is celebrating over 100 subscribers to her blog Intheyday which features the most lovely vintage reproductions. ( not jealous,am not)She offers alterations to ensure a perfect fit. Please check it out. I had already decide to treat myself to  a repro dress made to fit as a graduation present. Now I know where.


Published in: on October 18, 2010 at 11:49 am  Leave a Comment  

A little Inspiration from 1960

When people hear 1960’s hairstyles most people first think of long hippy hair, afros, and bouffants. Early 60’s hair is a lot like 1950’s hair.  It’s a fun and easy vintage look to do, and works really  well, if you’re growing out shorter layers.  These are fairly easy styles to do your self. A roller set, a rat tail comb for back combing, and hair spray. 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Bumpits welcome.

Hair is how you comb it …?…what does that even mean?

Published in: on October 14, 2010 at 8:58 am  Comments (3)  
Tags: ,

Great retro shoes and more! Affordable too!

All you younger vintage loving gals . I am going to give you a shopping tip for a company you’ve been exposed too, but I can bet never shopped. You’ve more than likely gotten a catalog from them. But you’ve never shopped there. They carry items you wear everyday, classic perfumes and modern as well.  they carry makeup from stila, bobbi brown, elizabeth arden, estee lauder, prescriptives I even saw a lone mac lipstick.Cheap, too.  But I still would be willing to bet you’ve never ordered from them or been on their website.

Yeah right, you say. Come on lets here it, so I can prove you wrong, you’re thinking.


Okay you haven’t shopped there. You might be saying I’ve never even heard of the, I don’t get their catalog. You know that catalog you may have seen that you probably dismiss as being for old people? The pull on elastic waist pants, velcro comfort shoe,  diabetic socks one, as seen on tv one. . That’s the one.  So yes their main market is AARP card carrying folks. But what that means is they  carry styles to appeal to this market. Mary Janes, T-straps, skimmers, etc in a lower heel. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want every shoe I have to be 4 or five inches. I never wear them.   They carry classic white keds and the classic espadrille. Extended sizes to boot.Cheap too.

They carry lots of classic, modest undergarments. I even got  high waist panties to go with my high waist trousers. Still waiting on that perfect skirt to come my way.

They carry classic scents like L’air du temps, shalimar, and royal secret as well as many top designer scents form today in addition to the makeup I mentioned.  Check the clearance outlet for choices starting at only $1.

They also have the standard house dresses, dusters , and the  comfort clothing you’d expect.  But have an open mind and take a look around. You may just end up placing an order.I did. I got some grey flannel cologne for my husband( that scent makes me weak at the knees), a lipstick set by prescriptives, the shoes above in dark gray $24.99!, my daughter a little pair of suede booties,  and the high waist panties. I spent around $50 with shipping! You can’t beat that with a stick!

Published in: on October 4, 2010 at 2:57 pm  Leave a Comment  

My new favorite blog

Sometimes we find old pictures of our moms posing suggestively with strange men

Excerpt from the post to this picture. And yes that is Mickey Hartigay husband of Jayne Mansfield father to Mariska. This blog is reader submitted photos of their moms style. The majority of them don’t have a celeb like this one, but they rock just the same. I even added this site to my blog roll.


I love it!!!!!!!

Published in: on October 1, 2010 at 3:16 pm  Leave a Comment  

Thrifting Tips 101

Thrift Stores. I buy about 80 % of my family’s clothing from thrift stores.  Take into account I am including undergarments and shoes(I always buy these new) that’s almost everything.  I’ve been shopping in thrift stores for years, growing up in New York there was a Salvation Army thrift store right across the street from my apartment. As a teenager I bought quite a lot there, but always went early in the morning, in partial disguise.  I figured out early on, I could buy fabulous unique clothes for a fraction of the retail price.  More often than not the quality was better than if I bought new. I almost never heard, “I have that shirt/skirt.!” By expanding your options(different eras, lines from stores you may not have access to, etc) your style is expanded. This is where my love of vintage style began.  The styles, the fit, the quality of fabric and workmanship was almost always superior to anything modern.  I’m a true New York bargain lover to start with, and with 25 years plus thrifting, I’ve become what all that know me call a “deal queen”. And while I’m aware ebay and etsy have tons of great vintage clothing, I don’t buy many vintage clothes online.  Fit and finance are two biggest problems I have.  Anything really great is out of my budget, if I can afford it, I can usually find something similar and not pay shipping, and be able actually feel it and try it on. I am 4’11” and have a wide chest area. I’ve had three children, and while I’m lucky I actually still have a waist, I have a little bit of a pooch.  I just prefer to try things on. Now that I’m thinking about it if  more online options had a return policy, I’d do a lot better. Note to sellers.

So here’s a few things I’ve learned. You may already know or practice some or all but hey if it helps one person. These would apply to yard sales, church sales etc. Anywhere that sells used clothing and goods.


1. Go often. This is number one. Inventory comes in and is put out daily.   Also if you are lucky enough to have several in your area, go to all of them.

2. Learn your shops.Learn the layout out of the store. This makes going often easier.You can zip around the store. Most of us don’t have as much time as we’d like to spend exploring. Knowing where and how your shop displays items will help. Some separate by size, some by  color, some have “better” racks etc.  Find out what specials they have on what days. My local shop has 50% off  all merchandise on Mondays, on Tuesdays all clothing with certain color tags indicating they’ve been there over a week are 99 cents, and so on.  This is not to say you should only shop on deal days. I know for a fact that a certain large chain of used goods shops “pulls” some of the better items off the floor, so that they won’t be sold for half the ticketed price.  Not all shops do this, but going on a day with no specials, will be less crowded, picked over, and have more inventory.  Remember number one, go often.

3. Be educated. Even though the majority of my family’s clothing purchases are second-hand, I’ve made it a point to learn as much about retail lines  as possible. Knowing names, and which lines are made for certain stores will help in making your purchases. Learn to spot quality fabric and workmanship.   You will learn which designers cuts you do best with, will stand up to wear etc. You will also learn not to pay too much for lower end lines that are inexpensive sold new. You will be able to tell if an item is actually from the 1940’s or is 1980’s does 1940’s.  Syms’s clothing stores had a commercial on while I was growing up. The owner said “An educated consumer is our best customer”.  The more you know, the better you’ll buy.

4. Don’t go shopping with anything in mind. Trust me if you look in your closet and think, “I need some pretty blouses for work” and then set out in search of them, you more than likely won’t find a thing.  But there might be perfect for you suit on the other side of the store,or a ton  of quality  of clothes in your daughters size just donated.  Along these same lines, the best finds are usually off season, just like retail.  In the middle of July, summer clothes are at a premium, you might just find a gorgeous cashmere cardigan, or a great pair of vintage wool trousers.Also be open. Some of my most flattering clothes are items that didn’t exactly reach out and grab me.

5. Buy ahead provided you have storage space. Your daughter may wear a size 2t now, but she will eventually be a size 5. That vintage wool princess coat will eventually fit her. If you wait until she’s a size 5 to find a coat, the inventory then may not have anything you like. You may have a perfectly fine pair of white keds now, but they will wear out. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a new pair sitting in the closet waiting it’s turn?

6. Be picky.Inspect clothes carefully, you don’t want to have to pay to mend clothes or worse get home and find a bleach stain or worse.  Just because it’s only a dollar, doesn’t mean it’s a good buy. Even if an item has no flaws, be selective. Does it fit perfect?If not, is it worth the price of either your time or professional alterations? Is it comfortable? Will you wear it often?  Do you really need another pair of black trousers? How often are you going to wear a sheer blouse? Does it work with what you already own? How will you put together great looks if your closet is stuffed.

7. If possible, get to know shop employees. They may be willing hold items for you or at least call you when a donation of your interest comes in. A girl at my shop, will hold all dresses, she thinks are vintage and my size for one day. In return, I bring her son goodies from my job that I get at cost. There may be something they saw in the back, hasn’t been put out yet, you might like.This is especially true of consignment shops. Yes the prices are a bit higher but you the inventory has been presorted of junk. Besides notifying you of merchandise, maybe you could workout a donation/discount deal.  I go to a shop, donate all my son’s quality outgrown clothing, I get a discount fthe owner deems fair.

8. Here’s what I’ve found shopping yard/tag sales.  The wealthier the neighborhood the more they expect you to pay for goods. Obviously this is not always true but I find it to be true most of the time.  The attitude is like I payed 60 dollar for that coat, your getting a deal if I sell it to you for $15.  Or that comforter came from Bloomingdales you should be happy to get it for $40.  What then happens a lot, nobody buys much, they just donate it and it ends up in the thrift store. 🙂  If you really have to have an item try a little haggling first. Remind them they wanted to get rid of all this stuff. Not have to haul it all away, and have another sale or donate it and get nothing but a tax receipt.

Now in the more modest neighborhoods, people are much more likely to let things go rock bottom. The only exception is brand new items.

In all instances be nice, and ask the sellers if you’re looking for something in particular. Especially at estate sales. They may have know idea you’d love all those old full slips they were going to donate. Or that fur trimmed coat from the 50’s.

9. Never be too quick to judge a shop or sale. You may see what looks like a bunch of junk but way back in the corner there’s a lone vintage wicker purse for 50 cents. Do a quick but thorough  walk through everywhere. One of my best buys was at a resale shop here in Atlanta that caters to teens. There are several around. I went in with my daugher, and found a brand new Chloe bag for $10! I can only imagine some wonderful grandmother bought this as a gift for her grandaughter who then decided it was too old lady for her. Score for me!

10. Tag team.  Have friends and family who know you pick up things for you and you do the same.  It may not be right for you, but it’s perfect for your sister. Buy it and she’ll do the same for you.

Hope these help and happy, bountiful thrifting wishes to all! With a little effort you’ll get the joy of  responding to compliments on your attire with a  “I got it for $2”.

Pretty Girls Vintage Photos

Sigh, this photo is absolute perfection. While this photo is of a pretty girl back in the day she was a model. I much more enjoy looking at vintage photos of regular girls.

Here is a link to a site you may have heard of Shorpys, the pretty girls gallery. My absolute favorites are the Bathing beauty pageants with just regular girls.

Check out the lovely ladies here

Published in: on September 17, 2010 at 2:51 pm  Leave a Comment  

Manicure and Deshine in under a minute at your desk!

I am one of those people who can’t keep a manicure. Between bathing a a four year old, dishes, shampooing clients my polish doesn’t last. Add to that I am really lazy about it.I abhor faux nails, so I usually go without polish or wear nude polish so the chips aren’t as noticable.But by doing this my finger tips were missing that enduring charm( great ad isn’t it)I was feeling a little charm deprived  so I went to off in search of liquid charm and  discovered Sally Hansen color quick nail pens. They are super portable, and dry insanely fast. I’ve found that if I keep a mini manicure kit and one of these in my purse I can give myself a good quick manicure at my desk in 30 seconds plus another 30 to dry. Seriously. I do one coat lasts the day, the nest day I just pop another coat on.Day 3 I remove and start over. I was buying individual wrapped remover pads but at 50 cents a pop that can add up. I’ve found by soaking cut up baby wipes in remover and storing in little ziploc baggies( at craft stores for jewelry) I can make about 50 for the price of just a few store bought. If you’re going for a vintage look, remember to leave the moons and tips bare when applying polish. For an indepth tutorial on an authentic vintage mani check out the fabulous vintage-manicure-real-one.html

I’ve also found that unbleached brown paper towels, the kind used to dry hands in public restrooms, cut into similar sized pieces and stored in the same baggies,  works just as good as any store bought oil blotting papers.  I even went super geeky and cut into circles so I could house mine  in a fabulous 1930’s compact I found.

Wait for your boss to go get coffee or the lavatory and get busy. You might even have time for a quick eyebrow tweeze.

Published in: on September 13, 2010 at 12:20 pm  Leave a Comment  

If you are in the market for the most adorable, feminine aprons for home or salon you must check out Jessie Steel. Can’t believe I haven’t heard of them before but I hadn’t.

Vintage aprons this pretty are hard to come by and can be pricey this site has adorable options(repros) starting at around $20 and up. They also have oven mitts and totes that are just as cute.

I needed a stylist apron which is how I found them but I am going to purchase a cooking apron as well.

Check them out here

Published in: on August 3, 2010 at 2:20 pm  Comments (2)