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Archive for the ‘What I wore’ Category

…if it ain’t got that swing!

LINDY-HOP-e1302691178364photo source

Hello, Gentle Reader. Both LHR and I have been missing in action for many months. Life gets busy! I’ve been pretty occupied blogging over here recently, and LHR is up to her ears in work and puppy training.

BUT, in the meantime, I have also taken up a new pursuit, something I have always wanted to learn to do. Yes, at the ripe old age of (mutter mutter mumble), I have started swing dancing.

And. I. Love. It.
Seriously, I might be addicted.

destacada-lindy-595x360photo source

How I got into swing dancing is a long story, one I promise to share in another post, but you won’t be surprised to learn that it was clothing that got me started. Tonight I am off to my weekly Lindy Hop class with the amazing Natalia and Luis of Lindy Hop Revolution and I am going to trial run a new outfit. Yes, I am keen to learn to dance well, but I’d be lying if I said I do not spend a lot of time planning my swing dancing outfits.

Here is the thing that no one really mentions about the swing scene:
dancing that hard is Mighty Sweaty Work.
Which means that wearing the kind of original vintage clothing that got me started on this whole journey is simply not an option; you do NOT want to be working up a sweat in a 1940s frock.
Nor do you want to expose fragile fabric and seams to vigorous physical activity.

So, I am always on the hunt for outfits that are cute, have a bit of a retro flair (if possible) and are comfortable for dancing. Tonight’s outfit is the following:

swinglesson3

1. I quickly learned that wearing my hair up is critical; it is marginally cooler to keep my hair off the back of my neck. Tonight, I am borrowing a look from Rosie the Riveter— 40s girls wore headscarves to protect their pin-curl sets while they worked. Mine is not a full headscarf because I don’t want to be too warm; I left the top open and just tied the scarf around my usual messy up-do. That way, I get a retro vibe, but don’t have to go to all the work of setting pin curls.

2. I prefer skirts and frocks to trousers– first of all, they twirl nicely and (I hope) can serve to distract from the fact that I am frequently busy making a mess of my footwork or forgetting to listen to the music and losing count… Secondly, as long as one chooses breathable fabric (cotton!), they are cooler for dancing; I am all about trying to remain ladylike despite being all sweaty. This little frock is a cheapie from H&M– I don’t feel  bad about making it work hard.

3. Flats. Yes, I know. I have had to leave my beloved heels on the shelf lately, Interweb. Lindy Hop can be very fast. Heels and learning to dance do not mix. At all. So, I am always on the lookout for cute, flat (ish) shoes that look cute with dresses and skirts. They also need to be comfortable. For this evening’s lesson (for most of my lessons, actually), I opt for my Chucks. They are comfy and they are flat.

swingclass1

Headscarf: Ardene
Dress: H&M (I went a size up for comfort while twisting, hopping and twirling.)
Belt: Winners (also a size up)
Chuck Taylors: SoftMoc

swinglesson2

I’m hoping the hairdo holds up– I have plans to match an outfit to a buddy’s this weekend and I want to wear my hair like this. If it works for class tonight, I know it will work for my weekly Saturday night dance, too!

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So, as you probably know, Pantone (they are the official, world-wide gods of colour trends) have declared the colour of the year to be Emerald Green. Congratulations, Emerald Green– you deserve the honour!
If you have been following this blog, then you may have guessed that I COULDN’T BE HAPPIER.
I love this colour. I wear it every chance I get. It is one of my favourites. EVER.

Which brings me to this blazer. I love love love love it.
I love the inside (black cats on the lining!) and I love the outside.
I love the fit, the fabric and the way it feels when I wear it.
I love that I can put it with pretty much anything (yes, I do think that bright green is a neutral– don’t you?)
and I do wear it with pretty much everything.

Last week, I had one of those days when you get up in the morning and have no idea what to wear. Sometimes, if we’re lucky, the best outfits are born that way.
I have to say, I am pretty smitten with this one. I want to wear it every day.
It’s comfy, it’s cute and it involves my green blazer!

fashionisdanger

Blazer & Trousers: H&M
One-Shouldered (you’ll have to trust me) Top : Jacob
Blue Suede Shoes: Globo

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It’s March Break! (cue sound of angels singing) Which means a LOT of errands. Which means comfy shoes.

idareyouThe first time I wore these shoes, no one said a word about them. Not one person. Not one word. It freaked me out a bit. I mean, they sort of make a statement, don’t you think? I thought the statement they were making was along the lines of, “Holy crap! COOL.” But then, when no one had anything to say about them, I began to wonder whether what they were really saying was, “The woman wearing these is a certifiable fashion victim.”
In the end, I decided I didn’t care because what matters is what  think and I still think they rock.

I wear them all the time.

It was love at first sight for me when I saw these shoes. After all, they are an unholy marriage of all that I love: patent leather, Oxford brogues, black & white, STUDS! And I was not deterred at all to learn that the person behind them (okay, maybe it’s just her money is behind them) is none other than Madonna.

truthordare

That’s right, Gentle Reader, my shoes are by Madge.
The line is called “Truth or Dare.”

 

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Yesterday, we went to Rob and Ann Marie’s wedding. It was filled with lots of great moments including Lucha Libre thumb wrestling, a brilliant band – tragic roundabout and lots of other surprises.

Ann Marie decided that the wedding attire should match the formal setting (one mooregate place) and for that in particular I thank her. I’ve been dying to wear this vintage number I bought with YYZ about 5 years ago in a store on Ossington in Toronto. I believe it was I Miss You. However, YYZ will correct me as her memory (at least related to shopping) is impecable.

When I bought the dress, I imagined I would cut it off at the knees so I could wear it more often. As you can see I never did cut it off and I’m glad I didn’t. Don’t worry, I never will. Like most dresses, my short-waistedness causes a little of an issue and should probably get the back adjusted, but it’s probably a thing I’ll never get around to. Other than the back, it fits like a glove and is SUPER duper comfortable. In a few pics, I see the girls need a bit of hoisting. Oh well. That’s age for you.

Here are a few shots of what I wore (and a few of what others wore). There’s more of the wedding over on flickr.

J and I amongst the flowers

J and I amongst the flowers

With the Opera Coat (bought again with YYZ but in Brooklyn)

With the Opera Coat (bought again with YYZ but in Brooklyn)

My diamond engagement ring.

My diamond engagement ring.

The gapey back

The gapey back

There was fun with light sabres.

There was fun with light sabres.

The happy couple

The happy couple

The cake was truly sculptural. Look at Flickr for robot bride/groom

The cake was truly sculptural. Look at Flickr for robot bride/groom

The bride's shoes.

The bride’s shoes.

One of the many guests in a mask.

One of the many guests in a mask. Love that it is tartan.

What I wore?
Dress: 60’s vintage number by Ruth Dukas (Canadian – born in Poland) bought with YYZ (read more about her here)
Ring: complete trash bought with YYZ on this trip to NYC
Earrings: Vintage silver screw-ons. I lost one 😦
Shoes: Silver Gucci (bought 2nd hand and worn here)
Jacket: Green Opera Jacket with blue lining bought with YYZ (no label – perhaps homemade)
Bag: Silver bag bought with YYZ (there’s a bit of a theme here). I believe Aldo.

In case you are wondering why there were all these Lucha Libres, Ann Marie is studying at Lucha Britannia. (Her Lucha name is Chow Mein.) If you are visiting me, ask me to take you to a night there (if they have one on). It is brilliant albeit a little scary.

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This is the usual soundtrack that runs through my head here in London. It rains a shedload in this country. I find it rather depressing sometimes. In fact, right now I wish I could hit the slopes for some snow, but it isn’t going to happen this year. I have some big things on my horizon (work-wise) and need to focus on that and ski later.

So, in the rain I stay and I might as well make the most of it.

Luckily, thanks to Mum and Dad who were visiting in December, I have a swanky new raincoat to wear when the days are grey and rainy. We picked it up at Spitalfields. I love it because I can wear it on my bike (with a high-vis vest of course) and pull up the French Lieutenant’s Woman inspired hood.

What do you think?

Ready for the rain

Ready for the rain

The collar/hood rolled down

The collar/hood rolled down

French Lieutenant's Woman Hood

French Lieutenant’s Woman Hood

Worn here on the day of the most uncomfortable shoe day ever!

Worn here on the day of the most uncomfortable shoe day ever!

I realize I didn’t take a shot with the coat unbuttoned. It looks really swanky with the top buttons undone. It changes the look and the collar again. Oh well. Perhaps another day I will post such a picture.

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It’s been rather cold here in London-town of late. In fact, we even had snow. I love it! I know it will only last a few days and it reminds me of home.

As a result of the cold weather, I’ve had to think about wearing woolies every day. Given I don’t have a ton of woolen jumpers I need to think of how I might keep warm. Friday, I noticed this green vintage cardigan hanging in my closet. I hadn’t worn it in ages and thought it would do the trick.

So, the theme as you will see is Vin-tage (vin- tawzsh).

Fuzzy photo and bad angle* as I look like a linebacker.

Fuzzy photo and bad angle* as I look like a linebacker.

shell_belt_vintage

Shell Belt Detail

sequin_flower_cardigan

Cardigan detailing

green_yellow_necklace

Swanky necklace – definitely not vintage

What I wore and where I got it?
JeansLee. These are practically vintage. I bought them in Hampstead in 2007
Tank: Off-white wool knit by American Vintage
Cardigan –
Green, hand detailed wool cardigan, do not remember where I picked it up. Probably from the 50’s
Belt – Gold metal shell buckle belt, bought at  House of Vintage,  London
Necklace – YYZ and I discovered this brilliant, super-cheap store in NYC where we bought tons of crap like this necklace and so much more that has not yet made it here.
Shoes: Green T-strap Mary Janes by Kurt Geiger

*Angle or body? I’m not sure but I’m going to blame it on the camera angle. I really don’t think I would make a very good linebacker or quarterback or tight end or whatever the guys with the massive shoulders are called.

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This tent er, dress is a current fave. For obvious reasons.
#hides_a_multitude_of_sins

layeredtights

LHR sent me some amazing goodies for Christmas, including these pretty pale aqua net tights. Not wanting to reveal too much, I decided to layer them over a pair of opaque tights in the same shade as my new (!) Kate Spade shoes. I snagged the latter in the sale at Holt’s– they were tucked away in the back, rather than out on the rack, so when the salesgirl said, “Why don’t you try a size 7?” and I said, “There isn’t one” and she said, “There’s a pair in the back” I thought to myself, “SOLD!”

necklacesblog

 The necklaces are made by a former student of mine who goes by the name of Pikay Creations.
I love her work and you can find her on etsy, if you do, too.

jewelrydetails

The fancy cocktail ring (cockatoo ring?) is from Target.

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