Trying to put my thoughts & ideas down somewhere and give another outlet to my creativity. It's all connected, so I can't say it's a blog about just this or just that. Dolls. Fashion. Art. A little bit on travel, whatever... let's take it wherever it goes...


A season for vintage

I think it's gonna be a very, very vintage autumn (and maybe winter) for me this year... sometimes, it just all comes together. Searching Etsy for one thing led to another which... to make it short, I am right now waiting for more than one 1940s dress (plus a suit) to arrive. Plus I am still working on the skirt for a 50s suit after an original pattern (whilst mom is working on the jacket).
Then Nicole's post on her adventures in vintage hairstyling had me think back to... heat curlers, and made me decide to not go to the hairdresser after all. I don't think I've found the right styling product yet, and my hair is still a bit short for curlers, but I *think* I'm getting there. At least it's worth a try. I need a change of look every now and then, and I have been feeling lately that it's been overdue - either it would be back to the shorter hairstyle like I had last year around this time, or something new would have to happen. I get bored of my current hairstyle at regular intervals it seems.
Now I just need to get the furniture in my bedroom into shape (time to introduce more style to the place!) and things are gonna look great all over. I need something to look forward to - it's gonna be another heavy season at work I fear...



Super dresses from Vienna...

Taking a break from sewing (something vintage-style, no less!) and reorganising my dolls (lemme tell you, that's hard work!)...
I had hoped to find maybe some nice 40s or 50s day dress in Vienna... well - nothing of the kind was around, but I think I did find two really cute other dresses. Ok, one's a formal one - as if I hadn't enough formal wear in my closet - but who could resist a cute dress if it's a perfect fit?

A perfect, cute little black dress - ca. early-mid 60s I guess. Might have been made by a seamstress, as there are no labels, but I think it's just a tad too professionally made for home made.

A cute little summer dress - sort of "70s does 40s", by Finnish label Karin(a?) Heikkilä. There's quite a few mainstream Finnish fashion labels around whose dresses seem to turn up all over the world on the second hand/vintage market, but nobody seems to know anything about them. Only they're all well-made and often look very Marimekko-inspired... other such labels are Merry Finn and Fennosport. Since I've seen the first examples of such dresses, I'm now always on the lookout for anything by them - or like them. Who knows, there's probably more! Finland used to have a very big and active clothing- and shoe-industry!



Tales from the bottom of my wardrobe...

Long time no write - I know. It has been time to let some creative juices flow. Can't post any pics now, but I will as soon as I can ;-).

But here's the thing that I have been thinking about... Do you have that too? Clothes that seem to have been in your wardrobe forever... and suddenly you look at them and realize how old you are? Oh dear....!

My prime example are a pair of jeans... or what is left of them.
Thinking back - they actually tell a story - how I grew, what I liked, and how I changed - not just physically.

I got them on our first trip to Australia - wayyyy back in 1991. They were a woman's size and quite too big first. I don't have any really good photos of me wearing them downunder, but you can just see I had to roll them up quite a bit. They were the usual early 90s, slightly carrot-y shape with a high waist. No matter how much too big they were first, I adored them. By '92 on a trip to Venice, they were still too long, but a year later I had finally grown into them, lengthwise and otherwise as the last two pics show (they must have been taken just a few weeks apart from eachother). And you can actually see my hairstyle progressing as they grew longer! Ow, and remember those plastic dummies? I had to have the biggest one of course, even though I hadn't the faintest idea where that trend had come from! I didn't even know what Techno was - duh. As the t-shirt shows, by that time I had started my Beatles-phase by then. I remember, they were quite tight by that time, not the least in the waist, but I thought that as-tight-as-you-possibly-can-wear-them-jeans were the way to go... And cinching my waist with a belt even further. The last pic also shows another thing we probably consider a fashion crime these days... those body suits. I was the queen of them - I must have had tons!

That just reminds me - that Minnie Mouse sweater turns up on a few pictures too. A remnant from my "purple phase". Funny- I have lately been buying a lot of purple clothes again, though I prefer a darker shade these days.

Two years later, I had cut the jeans off. Why? Our annual end-of-the-year-party at secondary school. The first year I had happily gone there wearing my old neon-colored stuff that of course I hadn't realized had been sooo over... So the next year (end of '93) I wanted to do super trendy... which ended in my cutting these jeans off. I had just got my first bellbottoms, and these "carrots" were suddenly as out of fashion as they could be. So I cut them short and wore them with black opaque tights and a black top (body suit, of course!). Although they weren't exactly Daisy Dukes, they caused a mild scandal - judging on my class mates' reactions. With hindsight, it was maybe also simple jealousy - or a way of hiding admiration, since it was generally known that I was NOT cool or particularly popular. Such reactions to my clothing were common then - not that it put me off wearing whatever I liked... Can't say I'm still proud of everything I though was cool then *lol*, but at least I didn't give up - and never cared if my behind might look big in something or whatever... ah, those were the times!!!

Sadly, no pic exists from that party, but some of me goofing around in my cut-offs the next summer. Note the Peace-pendant (I was into my "hippie"-phase by then), the Cleveland Indians cap in the back and the Beatles and Kevin Costner posters in the background. And the Barbie collector dolls - this was at the very beginning of my collecting Barbie dolls. I have neither of these two dolls any more...

Funnily enough, those jeans that were once so tight... not only still fit me, but they're not as tight as they used to be... No kidding! Well, maybe they just gave in after all the washing. Cutting off the top of them came later still, but they come still so high up in the waist that nowadays I ask myself, how could possibly have worn them in the first! Why do I still have them? Duh. Can't even say. I just wear them 'round the house in summer or at most to go to the supermarket around the corner (parading my cellulite around is not what I usually do except when wearing a bikini *lol*). They just stay as long as they hold up... the leatherette inserts have long lost their "leather" look though, but who cares ;-).

I just keep 'em. Maybe because I remember the happy times when I wore them every week. I have things in my wardrobe that I've been about to throw away more often, I admit. But more about that another time...


How would I know...

The things one learns...! I just found this post on the Couture Allure blog about the Charles James exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum (my, I do wish I could be there, those gowns are absolute eye candy!), and what do I see?

The first gown, called the "Butterfly" gown, is what the very last Gene convention doll, "Stardust", which I brought home from Philadelphia in June, is wearing! It's a different color combination, but it's definitely THAT dress. Talk about vintage inspirations...

So the Madra doll that I won as well isn't the only one wearing an outfit that was made after a real inspiration. Now that makes me wonder about the outfits of the other dolls that I got...

There are lots of old Ashton-Drake Gene outfits that are almost 1:1 copied from vintage couture designs, but this is the first time that I actually see Integrity Toys doing it too. But it's a fitting gown for a gal like Gene!


Typically Vienna

Back from a few wonderful days in Vienna... did the usual round of shopping at Humana (pics of the vintage loot will follow), Bootik 54 etc., danced through half a night and generally had fun.

But some of the best bits of this city is walking through it's smaller streets, where you'll never know what you'll find (thanks to my "personal guide" without whom I would never run across them *lol*).

"Wohnzimmer-Galerie - Glücksschwein-Museum" (Living room gallery - lucky pig museum) - the things people get up to!

An interesting place... no idea who built or designed it, but those columns are unique. They're not metal, but some kind of earthenware it seems.

And how cute is that - a dressmaker's shop that certainly catches the eye!