Friday, 25 May 2012

Outfit post - my latest sewing creation!

I finished my Hawaiian print dress a few weeks ago, and the current UK heatwave, means its finally nice enough to wear it!
Here it is with a macthing coral colour cardi (which I got from Matalan, £6)
And without. I'm so happy with my new dress, this style is so comfy :) 
Its also really cost effective to make your own clothes too...this dress, including zip cost less than £5 to make.
And a close up on the bangles - Bakelite, and Bamboo - and a nice spiky plant in my garden!
Shoes from Office, but picked up for a £1 at a car boot sale last year...don't really match...but I don't have any coral shoes so these had to do!
And a close up of the top of the dress. I added a bow on one of the straps
This week, I also picked up this fab vintage tablecloth - a steal at 50p from the YMCA charity shop
And a close up on the print...My class tutor is going to show me how to turn it into a circle skirt in next weeks  sewing class!
I also got these new patterns through sewing class, for £3 each. 5 versions of a simple skirt, and a 60s style dress with 5 variations.....for when I'm feeling more confident to tackle a trickier project.
I was also given access to the college pattern stash! Wow! Tons of patterns from the 50s to the 80s all available to borrow! I picked out these two which are more or less my size. Hoping to make the high waist version of the left pattern, and one from the right at some point too.
I also finished my flamingo dress today. I'm going to wear it tomorrow as I'm trading at The Alternative and Burlesque Fair in Manchester, so will get some pics then. Hope you all have a nice weekend :) x

Monday, 21 May 2012

New products from Dolly Cool!

I've been busy the past few weeks as coming up very soon, I have a run of 5 shows in quick succession, including two big tattoo conventions! I have had time to develop a few new products however, some pocket mirrors featuring my original art, and available in Tattoo Rose, Swallow, Pow!, Day of the Dead Sugar Skull and Tiki:
And 3 new Hairtie designs, perfect for summer - Cherry Polka, Flamingo and Red Rose Polka Shabby Chic!
As usual - all are available on the website!
For Mirrors - click here
For Hairties - click here
Hope you all had a nice weekend :) x

Monday, 14 May 2012

This weekends vintage/flea/car booty finds!

Finally some nice weather in the UK! Well, nice for us anyway - sunny, dry and that means that the car boots are ON! :)
I was very happy as I have not got anything really special for quite a while now, and I did this weekend....here are my finds!
Find of the weekend! 50s cat vase - 20p! Yes really. It was filthy, and was in two pieces in the bottom of a box as its head had snapped off. All it took was a gentle wash, some superglue and a scrap of ribbon and it looks nearly good as new. We've called her Jess!
She fits right in with all our other retro nik naks :)
Popped into a vintage fair on Saturday and got these fab 'American Optical' cats eye frames for £10. They are being sent off to be re-glazed with my prescription (normal lenses - not pink ones!) this week.
Vintage drinking glasses - 50p the set. Mint condition and more than one, for once!
And 3 more vintage glasses - lonely one offs as is more usual, to add to the glass orphanage! The Bamboo one is my fave.
Red Boat neck Topshop Jumper - 50p. Swallow print coat - £1. Washed and dried yesterday and ready to wear today. No head today as have a bit of a cold and look like Rudolph! 
Close up on the print and accessorised with an anchor pin I got from a thrift store in San Francisco a few years ago.
And just purchased today off Ebay - 2 metres of this deadstock barkcloth for future sewing projects....Tiki Tastic! Hope you all had a nice weekend x

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Trip to Saltaire Arts Trail, some David Hockney and Antiques!

This Monday was bank (public) holiday in the UK. True to fashion, it rained! Thankfully, only sporadically so we were still able to go for our day out to Saltaire in Yorkshire.
Saltaire was created by Titus Salt, and is a Victorian industrial model village - the best preserved in the country. Not model, as in a miniature model village, but as in a purpose built village that was fashioned around a textile mill for the purpose of housing the mill's workers. Like that would ever happen today! You are lucky if you get sick pay and a pension these days, let alone a provided house with your job.
The mill opened its doors in the 1850's and 4,500 people lived and worked in and around its community. Today, the mill is an exhibition space, cafe, learning centre and antiques shop, and the houses are privately owned.
Twice a year, they host the Saltaire Arts Trail - where they have 'open houses' - meaning members of the public let people into their homes and they can view and buy local artists work - oh, and of course you get to have a nosy inside peoples houses too, yay! There is also a designer/makers fair - of which 4 of my creative friends were exhibiting this time, so off we went for a nosy!
Booklet you get when you arrive. Inside was a pull out map, showing all the open houses you could go and visit, and what art was on show in each house.
The grand Salt Mill
One of the rows of houses. All so beautiful! I'm a big fan of period architecture.
House detail. look at the door arches and window glass. All the buildings are grade II listed.
This is what the open houses looked like - bunting outside so you knew which ones they were!
Although the houses were lovely, they were TINY. Like really really small. 4 rooms only per house, with a tiny back yard. No room to swing a cat - or a mouse!
One of the very few larger houses, these were for the mill supervisors. You can just see one of the artists who was live oil painting outside
Obligatory outfit pic....my handmade Russian doll dress (you are going to get sick of seeing this!) with spotty bag from accessorise (gift from friend), boots off Ebay, Red blazer from car boot sale, and bakelite bangles, brooch and necklace.
View down the cobbled streets of the village. So quaint!
Ok, its childish but it made us laugh! Fanny was the name of  one of  Titus' daughters. It was a popular name in days gone by, shame now however that its slang in the USA for bottom, and slang in the UK for er, ladies front bottom!
Switched the camera to B&W to get this classic car parked next to Salt Mill
Inside the Mill, in the gallery area. The Mill really has been beautifully restored. 
On display is a permanent collection of David Hockney's work - one of the largest collections anywhere. David Hockney was born in Bradford, which is home to Saltaire so rightly so his work should be on show here. Who needs to go to London, queue for 2 hours and pay £15 to get in the Royal Academy when you can see all this for free!
Some of Hockney's work
And there is also an antiques centre in the mill (well, it is massive!)
Really cool pieces on display
A 'Book piece' - original 50s art palette shaped table in mint condition...the price tag? £270. Eek.
One of everything in here please!
And so on to the shopping....this is what I bought....
Vintage Glitter confetti cats eyes....cant decide if I should have them as sunglasses or normal glasses...hmmmmm. From Ivy & Co Vintage 
And from the makers fair - from left, recycled Peter and Jane gift tags from Swirlyarts, Star card and lion moleskine notebook from The Imagination of Ladysnail, and wood print moleskine from Finest Imaginary.
And these prints are by local artist Clare Caulfield. I really like her illustration style, it reminds me of Quentin Blake.
We had such a great day out. If you are interested in art and architecture, the next Saltaire Arts Trail should be on your must visit list! :)

Saturday, 5 May 2012

Latest sewing project, my sewing room and some sugar skulls!

Bit of a mis-matched blog title but thats what this post is all about!
I am absolutely LOVING my sewing class, and am really enjoying having the confidence to make from patterns, which is something that I have always wanted to do. Who would have thought just a local class with a group of retired ladies at the local community college would have been so inspiring?! Very actually...most of them have been sewing for years and have a wealth of experience that they are happy to share, luckily for me. So, this week I made the high waisted skirt from the vintage pattern, out of Day of The Dead fabric and here it is.....
Ta Da! Still having to wear leggings underneath - still cold in the UK!
And the back...I also made a matching hair tie with a remnant coz I love a bit of matchy matchy!
Isn't the print on this fabric ace? Its by Alexander Henry and from my friend Jen's shop - Stitch Me Lane.
And this was my pattern. It is an original "Easy to make 1 yard skirt" from 1959, I made view C. It was actually very easy, and only uses two pieces, one piece for the entire skirt (with quite a few darts and pleats) and the waistband. I made the entire skirt from start to finish - including hand stitching the hem - in about 4 hours.
I thought I'd give you a sneak peak at my sewing room as well. I moved all my work stuff into our spare room over the last few months and here it is...
50s table and sewing box, 60s chair and lamp, 80s sewing machine, given to me by my mum. I actually used to "play" on this as a child, sewing offcuts of cloth and trying out all the stitches. I'm thrilled that its now mine and helps me earn my living and make myself some clothes!
And lots of cute nik naks - cupcake pincushion was gift from my sister Jan a few years ago, owl embroidery scissors from Michael, the apple dish and Paul Frank Scurvy skull teddy were from my friend Kate and I bought myself all the other stuff! The Tiki mug is my pen pot and 4 of the sugar skulls are a new acquisition that I found this week in a cheap book shop of all places!
Two new ones that have photo clips on them...the black one is hand made by Kalahula.
And these are actually money boxes. I couldn't decide which one I wanted so I bought both!
Hope you all have a nice weekend :)

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Feeling down in the mouth....and some 60s charity cheer!

Since my last post, I have been feeling considerably "down in the mouth"....due to the hideousness that is wisdom tooth pain! Anyone who has ever had it will know how very painful it is, and I have had a week of mouth hell! I'm on antibiotics and painkillers now so it is getting better thankfully - but have felt like doing little, let alone blog posting in the mean time! 
Bad Tooth earring - by me :)
Anyway...enough moaning and onto other things! 
Thank you to everyone who left me a nice comment on my last post about the dress I made. I have worn it three times since I made it, and was complimented each time! I felt proud to say "I made this"!
Exciting news is that since last week, I have made myself a high waist skirt from the 1959 skirt pattern that I had, in some really cool Day of the Dead print fabric. I love it and I'm hoping to get photos and post about it later in the week so watch this space :)
Popped into the local charity shop while stocking up on postage supplies earlier...not had any good finds for AGES (the car boot sales have started here 3 weeks ago, but have been cancelled 2 weekends in a row so far due to really poor weather!) but was very pleased to find some 60s scales and bowls to add to our collection;
60s Salter Scales - £1
In my favourite vintage homeware shade of electric orange!
And 4 Pyrex snowflake pattern bowls - just 20p each! 
And a close up on the pattern
Very happy to find these - I don't often find bowls on my vintage crockery hunts! :))