Saturday, July 23, 2011

Blushing Blouse - Finis!

My dressed up and more romantic take on the same peasant blouse pattern I used for the vintage gingham - peasant top is finally finished. I blogged about this blouse back in May and never thought it would take me this long to complete. I live a full life - what can I say? Ha ha! I do love that one pattern produced two lovely tops with completely different looks. Now that's value! Adding to that value, the two fabrics I used were dirt cheap. The green and white jumbo gingham check was thrifted and the beautiful blush crepe was red-tagged at Joanne's - a steal. Will I be packing this little gem for my September Las Vegas trip - you betcha!

How are you stretching your fashion budget during this recession/ near depression?

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Windsong and White Shoulders

Today's momentary passion is a memory - a memory my nose remembers best. Windsong perfume, by Prince Matchebelli and White Shoulders, by Evyan of New York city, are two signature fragrances worn by my late mother, Caroline. When a girl of 19 loses her mother she has but her memories to carry her a lifetime. It's amazing how the mind, body and senses work together to ensure we do not forget those who go before us. I had not thought about these fragrances in a long time but something in this hot summer day clicked and there I was digging around the WWW doing a little research. When I happened upon an image of the very regal "crown" bottle of Windsong there was surprise and instant recall of this bottle on a dresser top from my childhood. It might even be my grandmother's dresser top. Of course most folks my age remember that ...Windsong stays on your mind. Commercial from the early 70's drilled that into us. :-)

The fact is although I have memories of both fragrances, White Shoulders is what I think of most when I think of mom in the summertime. Never overpowering, lightly floral with a fresh bathed crispness and a bit of sexy base notes. LOL! Readers should be warned I haven't a clue how to describe fragrances - it's hard enough to try to keep up with my wine snob friends and their descriptions. Others in bloggy-land are more experienced in the history of fragrances and I will hook you up here to a fabulous post by Amelia about this truly American perfume over at The Vintage Perfume Vault.

Created in 1940 this perfume is considered to be one of the most desired and successful of all American perfumes. It was war time and Americans wanted to spend their money on things made here at home. Hmmm - something sounds familiar.

I'm simply going to have to smell some White Shoulders fragrance today - somewhere. I will search out a Sephora if I have to; it's hard to explain, but I may even need to buy some White Shoulders today. If you think about how fashions come back in style it is not a stretch to imagine that the accompanying fragrances regain popularity as well especially when they remind of of better times.

P.S. The formatting of this post has been a battle today - for no apparent reason. Ug!

Monday, July 4, 2011

Evil Eye on the 4th of July!

Happy 4th of July to all my bloggy friends! This is a big day here in the U.S.A. and one we love to celebrate outdoors with family or friends. Soon we will head over to a nearby friends yard for some BBQ ribs . I can smell them from here! Actually the day has been very low key but it's hard to party hearty on a Monday - tomorrow work beckons. Plus - it's so hot outside this weekend. Whew!

Yesterday Hubby, Lo and I ventured to the Alameda Point Antique Faire where I made a fun necklace purchase. There were rows and rows of fabulous things at this once-a-month affair; but even there by the water, with a clear view of San Francisco, the heat got us and we didn't stay long.

Almost at once my attention was caught by a stall with a great gob of jewelry - stones of every color catching the morning sun - run by an old mother in a pink straw hat and her adult son. Nothing was tagged with a price and so each thing that interested you was put before the Mama and she inspected it and offered you her price. The second necklace I put forth for "pricing" was this cute $15 glass bead fish necklace that just screamed summer to me. I was a bit hesitant when she surprised me by sliding in her little, "It's a Turkish evil eye necklace", comment. I swallowed hard. I mean who needs to invite trouble, right? Thankfully she jumped right back with, "It wards off evil from the wearer - keeps it at bay". I said, "Oh, great - of course. I'll take it for $13"! Sold.

So don't mess with me - I have Mama's Evil Eye necklace on this Independence Day. Ha!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Everything Is Coming Up Roses

Here are some pictures of my roses as they emerged from slumber this Spring. I meant to post them sooner but life got in the way. :-)

I shot them in morning light with just my handy iPhone 4 camera but apparently their beauty won't be denied. These roses came with the house a couple of years back when we moved in so I don't know their exact names. I also have a yellow rose that is very fragrant but was not performing on this particular morning.

I L O V E roses!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Mid-Century fashion love

I have been smitten by fashion since I can ever remember. My mother was a beautiful woman with fabulous taste in clothes. As a youngster there were always Glamour magazines around the house and when it came late summer my mother always bought Seventeen - the college issue as well as Glamour, Mademoiselle (is that even around any longer?) and of course the biggie - Vogue Fall issue. In fact checking I find Mademoiselle left us in 2001. Truth is all the women in my family knew how to put a terrific outfit together including my aunt and grandmother. They were not wealthy people but they had great taste and knew when to add the pearls, a rhinestone broach, a patent leather belt or a smart alligator bag. I have amazing memories of these days - particularly the 60's and early 70's.

My grandmother made a lot of square dance dresses - mostly before I was born - but they were still in use and filled the extra closet when I was little. I loved the colors and texture of the petticoats and the braids and rickrack trimming. I took sewing as part of Home Ec. in Junior High School and also took it as a summer class. Back in April I blogged about being inspired to sew again and I've been taking an informal class on Tuesday nights which I love.

Well I just discovered Recollection, by Irish designer Sandra Murphy through a fabulous interview on Collete Patterns written by Kirsten. Recollection is described in one phrase as: New Clothes With Old Soul. I love that! Sandra even creates all of her own prints so you won't see them elsewhere and she is making all of these garments in the U.S. which I do love. She is also feeds that trend committed to fewer, quality garments, over a closet full of masses of "cheap disposable clothes". I wish her great success. Take a moment to check out her web site where she is featuring her Autumn/Winter 2011 collection. You can click on Looks to see individual shots but don't miss the video showing of the same line - really creative. I think you will agree that these are lovely designs and quite wearable. It makes me want a job in the big city (San Francisco) again as I had in my late 20's and early 30's. Of course I'd like to be in my late 20's and early 30's again, too! I might look a little more like the stunning model Valareia Eva. I have to tell you - her hair is the greatest isn't it...I can do that. Ha ha!