Wednesday 8 July 2015

Travelling dress - the adventure continues.....

(I interrupt my lengthy blog hibernation to bring you this post. I will return soon. Soonish perhaps.)

One of the reasons I adore vintage is imagining the life a dress has had before coming to you. The fact that the dress has a history, has lived, is so charming and beguiling to me.
Who was the girl that made this dress? Or did she save and save to buy it?
Was it a special dress for much longed for occasion?
How did she feel when she wore the dress? Beautiful? Stunning?
What adventures did the dress take part in? What shenanigans, joys or sorrows was the dress an accomplice to?
Did the owner of the dress never want to take it off?

So when I had the opportunity to take part in Joanna from Dividing Vintage Moments travelling dress journey with this gorgeous honey of a frock, I jumped at the chance. Hells yeah  I wanted to be in on this dresses adventure! I could now become part of this frocks rich history and share in its story.
(And hopefully not rip it! Oh I had so many moments when I prayed to the dress gods to not wreck this lovely.) 

I did have visions of sun-burnished fields or nostalgic old railway stations to set my photo shoot, but alas, time poverty, crazy work and family schedule and sodden Melbourne weather all worked together to dampen my creative flame.

 So instead, my parents gorgeous weatherboard cottage built around 1915 would suffice, with the laughing kookaburra watching keenly (and probably laughing!) over the proceedings.

Isn't it the most amazing window?

I had a blast swanning about in the frock even though I had to rug up with my op-shopped brown coat. It is a truly lovely dress with rich autumnal colours  that I normally wouldn't wear but loved on this frock.

And the Little Miss had to be part of the dresses journey too!

A little too big just yet but that is the beauty of this dress. It has adorned so many amazing ladies all over the world, all different, with varying lives but all with the passion and love for vintage who appreciate the qualities of this sweet frock and who want vintage to live on. For the journey to continue. For future generations to adore it just as much.
Thank-you so much Joanna for allowing me to be part of such a special project, and thank-you to all the gorgeous blog ladies who have imbued the dress with their grace and magic.
Check out the dresses journey on Joanna's blog to see its global adventure.

Saturday 30 August 2014

Fun on the farm.

Well how about that. Another post and a month hasn't gone by. Go me!
I am feeling rather delicate after a wonderful night out with pals with lots of music, laughs and drinkies enjoyed after another heavy week at work. Actually I am totally surprised I didn't fall asleep at about 9pm (yep, I am such a hard core rager) as I felt I was already flagging. Luckily there was so much fun to be had, there just wasn't time to fall asleep!
We are starting to feel very Spring like here, and this weekend there is an abundance of glorious sunshine to frolic in. A few weekends back we also took advantage of a rain free day and headed to Caldermeade Farm, which is a working dairy farm and cafe and lots of fun for kids and grown ups alike. And a perfect excuse to don my newly purchased vintage mohair coat in the most divine tones of olive and green.
We wandered around the barn like viewing room amidst nostalgic old farming paraphernalia.

Oh how I would have loved to take this beauty home!
We did try and read some of the information about the farm displayed, but posing and playing took precedence.
This is the adorable cafe that was once the old homestead, and now is a great place to relax by the warming fires with a lovely hot cup of chai.
Hi moo's! It wasn't milking time when we visited the farm, so the ladies were at leisure, munching away peacefully in the sunshine.

If I had properly read all the information about the farm I could probably tell you the names of all the equipment. But of course my ignorance is painfully obvious so I shall leave it to you to imagine what all the shiny metal thingamajigs do.
A swell as all the moo cows there were many other sweet little creatures to bond with.
Yes these babies were snuggling in the cutest possible manner. And yes that is a fetching pink vest being worn. Because our fashion standards shouldn't drop just because we are on a farm.
An old tractor + young boy = a whole lotta fun.
After the farm, we couldn't resist popping in to a nearby antique shop. And I couldn't resist snapping this picture perfect cottage that is just so Australian.
We all enjoyed our  lovely family adventure, heading home tired and happy until we realised that we had perhaps brought home with us a little too much of the farm on the bottom of our boots, and had to drive with windows down to air out the stench. Ah the joys of the farm!

Sunday 24 August 2014

Forgive me

Forgive me for I have sinned.
It has been over a month since I have last blogged. And in the greater scheme of things I know that sins like murder and voting for Tony Abbot  are probably worse and will gain a little more roasting time in hell but still, I feel pretty bad about my lack of blogging.
What is even worse is that for a while I could not even read blogs for our lap top decided to conk out and have a lengthy and expensive holiday in the repair shop. Oh how we suffered with no technology! Oh how we were so ill informed with no Internet!
But, hurrah, for all has been fixed and I have thrown myself back into a lovely long spell visiting blogland today. It is true that I should have been doing house work and home work, but as I am already heading into the fiery pits anyway for not blogging I might as well be truly naughty and irresponsible and have some fun whilst I am at it.
Gosh, what have I been doing over the last month?
Work....yep, still battling away at that.
Op better believe it! I have become a regular at my work owned shop and have scored some fab shoes and accessories.
I scored this very boxy, yet very awesome, blue vintage jacket and quickly got to the job of revamping it to fit, and am very happy with the more tailored results.
See, much better! I am pretty sure that the last pic is of me showing off the sharp lapels but it also could be me smelling something bad. Hmmmm.
Enjoying the freshness of lemon and just loving this hand made knitted cardigan that I found in the kids section of the op shop. It just goes to show that you have to look everywhere when you op shop.
These little beauties of brooches were found at my works op shop and I know that they are just little plastic trinkets but I do find them adorable. I now have a little collection of these lovelies to brighten up an outfit.
I have to travel a little to hit some of my fave op shops but it pays off when you find stunning cocktail frocks that fit like they were made for me for only $7.99 each. Check out the rich pewter shades and bustle type ruffles of the frock above. And a pussy bow at the neck!!!!
I must be drawn to these shades at the moment because this shimmery metallic olive green cocktail  frock demanded to be mine too. How could I say no?
More goodies. And just to show that I am not obsessed with green 50's styles I found this fabulous pink, orange and purple number from the 70's. I do have some revamping to do (sorry vintage purists) but can't wait to don that bright happy dress.
Attended the "Heart of St Kilda" concert and despite a terrible head cold and sinus infection, enjoyed the great entertainers for a truly wonderful cause of helping the homeless and disadvantaged in the area.
Frocked up and gorged at a luxurious high tea with my pal.
Yummy! And also for a brilliant cause so I didn't feel so bad working my way through all of the goodies on offer.
So ladylike!
And last Wednesday my beautiful Little Miss turned four and we have celebrated with lots of gatherings and parties (and so much "Frozen" paraphernalia!) and cake. The little Miss is positive she has grown taller and when I look at these pics I have to agree. She looks so grown up!
I am sure there has been a lot more going on in my life but my poor old brain can't remember or recall much beyond what I had for brekkie this morning.
I do hope you all have been well and I hope that you can forgive me for my sinning.
I shall go read some more of your lovely blogs and redeem my self.

Saturday 19 July 2014

Sunshine on a cloudy day

I'm a month in to the new job and I am exhausted. Mentally and physically exhausted.
Buggered. Drained. Knackered. Plum tuckered. Wiped out.
My new job is not only viciously kicking my butt, it is wiping the floor with me afterwards.
I know it is still early days and I am hoping it will all settle down, but lawdy, I'm just not sure if I am up to all this hard work. After I had kids I cut down to part time work (because as we all know being a mum is a full time job in itself!), but now circumstances have changed and I am back to working 5 days a week again in a high pressure management position and so, at the moment, there just doesn't seem time for much
 else in my life.
And I miss my life! I miss my kids. I miss my husband. I miss my friends. I miss my home. I miss my op shopping. I miss blogging.
And whilst I have thoroughly enjoyed getting to know all of my new residents, I have fast come to realise that with the disadvantaged backgrounds of my clients comes a whole ton of quirks, challenging behaviours, tricky personalities, and at times overt hostilities. I'm usually OK with getting cursed at (I bet I could even give them a run for their money with my potty mouth!), but there is one gentleman who appears to have taken akin to me in the strongest way, shooting me constant filthy looks as he walks past me, muttering obscenities all the way. Not only that, but he has also taken to stealing my things. I don't think I am special. He does behave like this with everyone, but as a freshie I think I just haven't quite learnt to cope with it yet.
On the whole I have come to love so many of my new residents, really enjoy collaborating with my co-workers and am in awe of all the amazing charitable work my company does, and I have grand plans for improvements and new activities to engage and entertain. If I can keep my eyes open and stop myself from fainting from sheer exhaustion!
I wore this ensemble way back when I first started my new job, and I have to say that I look a lot fresher than I do now. Definitely didn't have the enormous bags I'm sporting under my eyes at the moment. 
Pink always gives me a lift and this frock may have been completely unsuitable for our recent weather, but at least as I shivered and froze, I felt pretty.
So with all that is on my plate at the moment, I haven't had a chance to blog much, with kids, homework, and work taking precedence, and for that I am truly sorry. I try and grab spare moments to catch up on everyone's blogs but I apologise for not commenting. And as for my own blog, well, I have to attempt to squeeze a few more hours from the day and fit in some posts when I can. I adore blogging and feel so at home in the bloggy world, that I can't bear the thought of not being a part of it.
So for now, just a few happy cheerful frocks to pick me up as I groan and grumble.
I picked this buttery yellow vintage dress whilst op shopping one weekend and even though I have issues with the sleeves (I am just going to have to shorten them - I can't stand that elbow length!) I do love the sunshiny colour and geometric pattern.
And right now I need all the sunshine I can get!
Hopefully my life will settle down and I can achieve a beautiful balance of all aspects. Hmmm.
Is that really possible? Or is it always a mad scrabble of trying to fit it all in?
Any ideas on how to achieve balance? I'd love to hear your thoughts.

Monday 23 June 2014

Capes and collections

 I'm sure I am not the only girl that has succumbed  to one of "those" sites on the web.
You think that you will just have a cheeky peek and then before you know it, 6 hours has lapsed, you are trembling, slack-jawed and pop-eyed with all the hot, hot eye candy that fills the screen.
"It's OK to just look," you try and assure yourself. "I can stop anytime," you try to convince yourself.
But then with every gorgeous creation that that pops up on the lap top your appetite grows and you want more. Your need becomes insatiable.
And then one day, during the rocky journey of addiction, just looking isn't enough. You need more than just looking. More to tantalise. More to stimulate. More! But what can fulfil this desire? How can you sate this yawning need that overwhelms you and inhabits your every waking thought?
So, with heart racing, hands shaking and emotions in overdrive, you finally give in and do it.
You succumb to that beguiling temptress that is eBay!
Sometimes there may be a little guilt, but sometimes there is a soaring sense of bliss and triumph, of a battle hard fought and won. When there is success it is amazing. But when the victory is not yours, the disappointment is crushing.
Oh, I have long had a passionate affair with eBay. So many beauties up for grabs and whilst the loss of some of those lovelies (yes I am talking about you, divine emerald 50's prom dress!) hurt , I am always willing to get back on the horse and continue on my never ending search for vintage perfection.
So when I was invited by eBay to try out their new "eBay Collections", I jumped at the chance.
With eBay collections you can curate your beautiful eBay finds in to groups, adding little descriptions so that you are left with lust lists to set your heart  racing.  From a girl that adores making lists, it really is great fun to organise your must haves into easy to access and visual collections.
Don't take my word for it. Check it out. But be prepared to lose a couple of hours as you trawl through items from the delectable to the downright bizarre. If you would like to check out my missbandthebygones collections head over to eBay and  take a gander at the pieces that have me weak at the knees.
One of my collections was called "Caped Crusaders", and it was there that this cape became part of my little narrative. The more I kept working on my collections, the more I knew I HAD to have this one. It couldn't remain in just an internet collection, it had to become part of my actual real life cape collection.
And so I pounced and it was mine!
Smug face! Can you blame me? It is just so gosh darn gorgeous! Perfectly purple with a lush fur (faux?) collar that makes me feel like royalty.
I plan on taking this dame out for a spin this weekend when I am heading out to watch The Rocky Horror Picture Show, and I'm not sure if I am more excited at wearing my new to me cape or watching
Frank-n-furter prance about in fishnets. Sooooo excited!
What collections would you create with eBay Collections?

Saturday 7 June 2014

New beginnings

Consumed by stomach clenching fear and exhaustion (from way too many sleepless nights spent worrying about who I was going to talk to, be friends with, eat lunch with - very high school I know!), but with a huge strained and slightly desperate smile plastered on my face, I embarked on my new job.
After 11 years of being in the same job and knowing my colleagues and clients back to front, and inside and out, I am experiencing that awful state of constant confusion and ignorance.
Will I remember every ones name? Will I remember where everything is? How will I know what to do?
Overwhelmed is probably understating how I have been feeling. But I have been applying that wonderful piece of advice, "fake it 'til you make it", and I think that I may have fooled everyone into thinking that I know what I am doing. Maybe.
I have been enjoying some VERY interesting characters with rich (and often heart breaking) histories, and I love the company I've joined and all of the amazing charity work they do. The area I now work in is trendy and vibrant and I adore strolling down the gorgeous tree lined streets filled with old terraces and art deco heaps. And did I mention that I get to wear my own clothes (hurrah!) instead of the eeuurrgghh uniform that I was forever trying to cover up with bright flowers and crazy brooches so that I could ignore how depressing it was. And even though I am struggling with working 5 days a week again, and sorely missing that extra time with my kids and my op shopping jaunts, I do have the company op shop (yeah baby, we have an op shop!!!!) to delve in to and explore.
Do I sound like I'm trying to convince myself of how well my first week has gone and the positives of my new position? Yeah, well, I kind of am.
I'm still in that period where I remember nostalgically all the great aspects of my old job (and none of the horrible aspects like incompetent boss, cranky residents, ridiculous demands and crazy work load), and yearning for that comfortable feeling you get when you know everything about your job (comfy like wearing old slippers!). 
But that comfortable feeling often leads to complacency and stagnation, so even though I am super scared most of the time, I am revelling in the challenge of the unknown and hoping that the new beginning leads to new successes, new goals set and achieved and a sense of achievement from having the courage to jump in to this foreign situation when my brain was begging me to stay and hide.
Hurrah for new beginnings!
I have been playing it rather safe with my work wear this week, easing my new colleagues and residents into my often odd wardrobe choices. I don't want to scare them off too soon. 
But, oh, how I have been loving feeling like me at work and being able to express my personality through my clothes. Nope, never gonna get sick of that!
We have a long weekend here, so I am recharging my batteries after such a super charged week and I am looking forward to catching up on blogs, catching up with pals and sleeping in. 
Any tips on coping at a new job?

Saturday 24 May 2014

The skirt that goes with everything!

Sometimes you find a piece that somehow works with everything in your wardrobe.
Two weeks ago I was lucky enough to find that piece. A skirt. But not just a skirt. Oh no. 
To call it just a skirt would somehow lessen its importance in providing the ultimate cohesion in my chaotic and mad wardrobe. No, not just a skirt but THE SKIRT!!!!
A skirt made of the softest wool, in a huge circle skirt style, and not just featuring one shade like any other skirt, but displaying a multitude of hues in a technicolour tartan of such beauty and usefulness that when I spotted it in my local vintage shop, it actually took my breath away.
Isn't it brilliant? Can't you see this lovely being my winter go-to skirt?
Another new to me piece of frippery is this gorgeous cobalt blue crochet hand bag. I couldn't resist it. Someone has made this one with such love and care that I wish I could give them a big hug as a thank you.
This magical skirt appears to go with everything!
The skirt hasn't met any of my cardigans that it hasn't liked. And you know how thrilling it is for me when my pieces all match.
I have been revelling in our beautiful Autumn weather here and enjoying some mild days where I can wear my beloved tights, cardigans and heavier skirts
The op shopping gods have been smiling upon me again as I have been on a mission to expand my winter wardrobe with me finding this exquisite repro red coat that makes me feel like a Russian princess.

It has a detachable cape and the most luscious faux fur you have ever seen.
I'm linking this pic to Share in Style for my dash of red
I have also snaffled a vintage cape from eBay that will feature in an upcoming post because it is so divine it can't share the spotlight with anything else. (And OK, I haven't taken a proper pic of it yet!)
Remember me dribbling on about never winning anything? Well just to prove me wrong again, I won a fantastic giveaway from the gorgeous vintage genius Trish from Trish Hunter Finds, of a blogging e-course from the amazing Brittany of Va -Voom Vintage. You should have heard me squeal when I found out! I was sooooo excited and can't wait to learn more about blogging (I am rather allergic to technology!)
A huge thank you to both of those vintage goddesses!
I received a beautiful, emotional send off from my work and am looking forward (a little nervously!) to starting my new adventure at my new job in about a week.
Thanks again to everyone who wrote such lovely, supportive comments on my last post.
 Ladies, you are all awesome!