Just add pie

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Yeah I should have made a pie. Partially because this is my "Chuck dress", very similar to the red shirtdress she wore in the episode of Pushing Dasies with the horses, and the matching bedroom, and the brother from New Adventures of Old Christine...and partially because strawberry pie sounds like the best thing in the world at the moment. 

Dress and boots-Urban Eccentric Vintage

Socks-Made by me using a vintage pattern. 

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Still stealing from the boys

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Most of what you guys see here are special occasion outfits. Teas, cocktail parties, ladies lunches, that kind of thing. But for day to day, I go pretty casual. Lately I've been trying to strike a balance between vintage and classic, and over the past few years have been slowly investing in wardrobe pieces that will be in my closet for years to come. 

Which I have to say, is no easy task for a girl. 

Being female has it's perks fashion-wise. We certainly have more options available to us, more colors, textures, embellishments, details. But quality classic items are something that is severely lacking. At least it's not as easy to come by as quality mens clothing, and we have less options of quality clothing as they do.

We're not supposed to have an article of clothing for decades. We buy quantity, wear something for a season or two, and after that it's on to the next thing. 

And of course if you buy trendy fashions you probably don't want to keep your clothing for decades. There's vintage, and there's outdated. Right now it's a fine line. 

But classic? I'm into that. Items that existed in yesteryear, and are still obtainable today. Especially the things that cross between the mens and womens department. Straight leg jeans, leather loafers, cable knit pullovers. Finding all these classics has been a bit tedious though. But I guess as someone who has hunted, and worn vintage for years, the challenge is part of the fun. I hate that our options are few and far between, but I love when I find exactly what I'm looking for. 

Meanwhile I reach over the Vogue for the mens fashion magazines, and search for small button up shirts in the mens section. 

Because honestly boys, if you're not going to wear it, step aside. 


Boots, 1950s Evan Picone skirt-Urban Eccentric Vintage

Shirt-Stole it from Sam

Cardigan-Handmade by me using this pattern (scroll to the last one)

Burberry trench-Brown Bag Vintage 

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1943 yearbook hair inspiration.

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As mentioned in my last post, old yearbooks are something I really enjoy looking through endlessly. This is my latest find, a 1943 yeabook from Washington State College. 

Yearbooks appeal to me because the hair and clothing featured are more casual and common than in fashion magazines of the time. As much as I love hair rolls and rayon dresses, for everyday I prefer hair down in curls (or lately in a bandanna), and a sweater and skirt/slacks. And of course socks and loafers instead of stockings and heels, but that's another yearbook post altogether!

Next time I'll post either fashion, or boys photos, there's some cuties! 

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Tea and toast

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It seems like at the moment everyone is either sick, or feeling some winter blues. I usually make it to April before joining in on the spring fever (mostly because winter just spills into March and April and spring lasts half a second). But I grew up in the Northwest, so the gray skies are just a normal sight most of the year. 

One way to stay sane is to embrace the coziness that comes with winter. My favorite thing to do is brew some tea, toast some bread, and look through the old yearbooks in my collection. No matter how many times I flip through the pages I always notice something new, and get so much wardrobe and hair inspiration. 

What have you been doing lately to beat winter blues? 

Dress-Buffalo Exchange

Belt-Estate sale

Hairbow-Courtesy of Maribeaux

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{Vintage Beauty} Besame Violet Powder

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Ok, so truth be told I'm a dedicated MAC girl. I always try other brands, and always come back to MAC. Plus they have a recycling program, which I'm all for. My one problem is, as helpful as the makeup girls are at the counter, they always seem to want to "warm up" my complexion. I get caught up in the new makeup experience (there isn't much better than breaking the seal on a new batch of foundation and powder), and I buy them, and they're great, but after a while I get a little tired of my paleness being just a little off. 

A few weeks ago Besame Cosmetics asked if I would like to review a product of theirs, my pick. I was so excited! Besame is one of those vintage girl staples, everyone seems to have some favorite from them they just can't seem to live without. I was close to choosing a lipstick, as lipsticks are actually the one thing I don't care for with MAC, and Chanel discontinued my perfect red. But while browsing I came across the Violet Powder

It sounded so...well, so elegantly old fashioned, and unique to the brand, I thought you might like a review of that more.

At first I used the violet powder over my foundation and regular powder. Other than the scent, I didn't really experience much of a difference. About a week into using the previously mentioned combination, I tried subtracting my normal powder and replacing it with the violet powder. I tapped some into the lid, dipped my brush into it, and dusted it from my brows to my neck. 

And that's what I've done ever since. 

My complexion was cooled, soft, and slightly brighter, and it may be a subtle effect, but if you told me you were going to take away my violet powder tomorrow, I might throw you in a pit of angry wasps. 

(Insect or people? Whichever you find most terrifying.)

I don't think I would have tried such a frivolous sounding product on my own dime, as $22 for 0.21 ounces of  powder sounded like more of a treat than a makeup staple. But now that I have, I can equalize the price tag to what I'd normally spend on powder. And next time I order this, I'll add a lipstick to the mix and let you know how that pans out! 

They do have a store locator on their site for a list of shops worldwide in your area that carry Besame products. 

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Read me: Slacks and Calluses

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A few months ago I attended a lecture at the local history museum about recent archaeological finds at the Kaiser Shipyard site. Vancouver Washington grew in the 40s due to the shipyard and it's workers. Every time I leave the house in slacks and a bandanna, everyone person over 50 remarks at how I look just like their mother, aunt, sister, or even how they looked back in the 40s, working in the shipyard. 

The lecture was very interesting, apparently the most recent dig site was on a small garbage dump area where everything from cold cream jars to scrap metal was found. I was on the edge of my seat when the archaeologist showed pictures of jewelry, workers made from metal scraps on slow days. Crude little metal horse heads and hearts with arrows through them that were rejects for brooches and bracelets. He said even though it was very much against every policy in the book, they would often sell their crafts, and some work was so beautiful the upper management would order pieces of jewelry for their wives! 

I will spend as long as it takes to find a little scrap brooch. 

At the end of the lecture I gathered up the courage to ask the speaker about any books he would recommend. 
(Did I have enough to talk to the elderly woman sitting next to me who had actually worked in the Kaiser Shipyard? No. And I'll kick myself forever for that). 

I scribbled down a little list and received them for Christmas, and this being the shortest was the first to be read! 

Slacks and Calluses is the account of two schoolteachers who work a swing shift during the summer in a San Diego bomber factory. It's written by Constance Bowman Reid and Illustrated by Clara Marie Allen, and is as straightforward and honest an account as you could find. 

It's not exciting, or dramatic, it's really just about their experience in the few months they wanted to do their part. Constance is smart, witty, and there were times I laughed out loud at some account or another. Near the end an entire chapter is dedicated to the girls being forced to wear caps that cover all their hair and the displeasure of every female worker in the factory. 

It seems we always see two types of factory worker photos: Those gritty black and white ones where women were covered in metal dust and their hair was up in a bandanna, and those crisp colorful photos where the girls have perfect little curls peeking from their snood and clean slacks and sweaters. I always thought perhaps the latter was staged and the former was the real deal. Well according to Constance and Clara, both were reality. 

"Blondie and Phyllis were the old timers of the group. They were absolutely the cleanest girls on the line, and they amazed us, even before we got to know them, because they could arrive for work in spotless, creased slacks and leave work at one o'clock with their slacks still spotless and creased......They could keep their hair in intricate coiffures-up in beautiful curls one day and down in beautiful curls the next, with the whole thing topped by fresh or artificial flowers carefully chosen to match the costume jewelry they were wearing today."

"We in our striped t-shirts and dusty blue slacks did not see how they do it. We asked Babe of the bomb bay how some girls managed to keep clean, and she replied, snippily, that some girls had clean jobs and other girls made it their job to keep clean."

They also go into what a vast difference wearing slacks as oppose to skirts made when it came to how men treated them. 

"They called us 'Sister' in a most unbrotherly way, and 'Baby' in a most unfatherly way."

When wearing slacks they were refused service at an ice cream shop, as well as surprised when not a single man gave up their seat on the bus. They even conducted a little experiment and wore skirts and hats on the same bus only to find multiple men jumped up and offered their seats. 

Of course there's quite a bit of technical description, and they each go into depth about the jobs they did and what that involved. 

If you're interested in a personal account of what it was like to work in a bomber factory, I'd highly recommend this book. 
I enjoyed both the writing style and clean illustrations, and accounts of other workers and how their lives varied so much from the teachers (many girls working never graduated high school). Must have been an amazing experience!

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How novel

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This weekend my grandma picked this skirt up for me at an estate sale for 50 cents, and after hemming it up a few inches, starching it, and adding a petticoat, it's good as new! I think the print is cellos, feathers, clocks, and leaves...

Oh novelty prints. The more random the better. 

Skirt, gloves and hat-Estate sale



Shoes-Nordstrom rack


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