Friday, 30 September 2016

Garden Wanders ~ 1940s styling with Vivien of Holloway

As a pear shaped gal who loved 1940’s styles, it can be hard. I spent a lot of my free time on the train or my break at work looking through sites like etsy at the amazing 1940’s true vintage pieces on there. There are hurdles of being a pear shape when it comes to this era though. The 1940’s were more of an A-Line skirt than a circle or swing, as fabric was often rationed which means they are a slimmer fit through the hips. Therefore, I find that most 1940’s items are too small in the hips but would fit perfectly in the upper body. It’s important to remember I think: the state of the world during the 1940’s. World War 2 didn’t end til 1945. The world was not as technologically advanced then and getting goods out to the people for the most part took time in both manufacture and transport, at least in stark comparison to today. With the war taking a good chunk of resources, a lot of people were on rations, which lead to a very trim frame for women. Flash forward to the modern world and that’s hardly the case in developed countries at least. So while I do still hunt for true vintage, I’ve been looking for reproduction 1940’s items that I can add to my wardrobe to wear regularly without fear of damaging them. Enter Vivien of Holloway, a brand with some truly amazing 1940’s pieces!

Scarf ~ Baby Pink nylon scarf from Daisy Jean Floral Designs
Earrings ~ Pastel pink/white eclipe studs from Revere Folie
Brooch ~ Sundae Brooch from Deer Arrow
Blouse ~ Raglan Blouse in Mint from Vivien of Holloway
Pants ~ 1940s Swing Trousers in Soft Sand from Vivien of Holloway
Shoes ~ Saddle shoes from Royal Vintage Shoes
Vivien of Holloway is an amazing brand that hails from the UK that stocks a large amount of 1940’s inspired stuff. One thing I’ve always admired about their stock is that it has an authentic feel to it, which is one of the main things that keeps drawing me back into their store. As I’ve gotten more and more interested in the 1940’s, my desire for an authentic polished look has grown.  Swing pants are something I’ve recently fallen in love with big time. For someone on the go a lot like me, they are amazing. Able to be dressed up for work or down for weekend business errands, this style of swing pants are quickly becoming a staple in my wardrobe. Blouses have also become a recent love, especially as my hunt of investing in more 1940’s suits continues. A blouse and swing pants combo felt like the perfect fit!

Starting with the blouse, I was absolutely smitten with the colour. Green is a favourite of mine and soft pastels even more so. I got the size 18, which is a 40 Bust and a 32 Waist, which is pretty close to my measurements. This blouse did fit a bit roomier than I was used to, namely to my rather narrow rounded shoulders but it wasn’t SO big it wasn’t unwearable. I actually found it a pleasant change compared to my firmer fitting tops and it’s a welcome alternative. I could easily size down though for a firmer look or stick to this size for a more relaxed fit. This blouse is made of poly cotton, which means it breathes quite well, which is a MUST for someone with sensitive skin like mine. 

The sleeves are comfortable and not too tight. Their Raglan blouse comes in an array of different prints and colours. Some of the other colourways I'm dreaming about are the birdie Raglan Blouse and the flamingo Raglon blouse. If long sleeves aren't your thing they also have to Jo-Jo blouse, which is the short sleeve version and I honestly cannot wait to get myself some of those in some of their fun prints for the coming Australian summer. My favorite Jo-Jo blouses atm are the pink spiral blouse and the blue crepe gingham. This blouse is truly everything I’d hoped it would be and its one I cannot wait to style in other ways as well as add more to my collection!

The Vivien of Holloway 1940’s Swing Trousers in soft sand are probably the best fitting pair of trousers I own! While many of my other swing trousers have required being taken up or are much too big in the waist, these ones just fit perfectly not just on my waist, but my hips as well. I’m wearing the 32 waist and 44 hip pair, which are almost exactly my measurements. I love how comfortable these are. The waist side button up also means the lines of these pants are incredibly smooth, as I personally find sometimes zips can bunch on me. I stepped outside my comfort zone with these are got a lighter colour than I normally be comfortable in. As a curvier girl I tend to stick to darker colours that are a bit kinder on the slimming factor, but I find with these pants it’s not an issue at all. Their design and the cut from the waist to the hips, along with the side buttons actually smooths across the front! This is amazing for helping to hide problem areas or bloating and is a feature that I find a lot of modern clothing lacks!

These pants are incredibly comfortable to wear and I cannot wait to get them in varying colours and style them in different ways. Their versatility is truly their winning point. Team them with a blouse or a knit top for a more work appropriate look or go casual with a statement tee or a halter top. I’d love to wear this with a halter top in summer. These pants are flowy enough they wouldn’t be too hot either! I’ll definitely be investing in these in some more colours and they do come in a big range too! The Bottle Green is to die for and I definitely need the burgundy pair as well!

The Raglan blouse retails for $66.13AUD and the Trousers are yours for $93.27AUD plus postage. Considering the quality these prices are very good, even with our poor Australian dollar at the moment. Vivien of Holloway do ship worldwide as well, so ladies outside of Australia, you can also snap yourself up this amazing outfit too!

I hope you’ve all enjoyed this review. I’m honestly loving all the plush green leaves around home at the moment and they made such a great backdrop for this vibrant outfit. I was so grateful for a chance to work with Vivien of Holloway on this outfit for you all and you can expect to see it in something exciting that’s coming very soon to my blog!

Til next time darlings!

 Disclaimer: Whilst I received these items as part of a collaboration with Vivien of Holloway, all opinions expressed are honest to help ensure the most accurate information for my readers. 

Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Graveyard Goodness with Hell Bunny's Harlow 50's Dress

As I said in my post earlier this week, Halloween wasn’t a big deal when I was growing up in Australia. It wasn’t a holiday we really celebrated. However as an adult, I’ve loved slowly incorporating more spooky outfits into my wardrobe for the month of Halloween and didn’t realise how much I enjoyed it til I realised I have almost 10 Halloween themed brooches in my drawer (oops!). So this year I decided to splurge and get myself a Halloween specific frock and Hell Bunny delivered well with the Harlow 50’s Dress in Halloween print.

Flowers ~ Orange Double from Daisy Jean Floral Design
Earrings ~ Minty green holly hoops from Daisy Jean Floral Designs
Necklace ~ Cozy Cobweb from Erstwilder
Dress ~ 50's Harlow Dress by Hell Bunny from Tragic Beautiful
Shoes ~ Red Loraine heels from Royal Vintage Shoes

When I saw this dress on Tragic Beautiful, I was at first a bit hesitant. I don’t really own any ‘themed’ dresses, I prefer to theme outfits with accessories. But I saw this gorgeous dress when it was released and it swayed me. I found the print wasn’t too overbearing and I loved the variety of things within the fabric. So I took the plunge and got it, along with my first kill star dress too! I got it express and it was in my excited hands the very next day, which was amazing. My dresses were couriered as well as opposed to being sent by Australia post which is awesome, as sometimes you can get things sent express with Australia Post and it still doesn’t reach for days. I was excited to see the fabric was just as vibrant in its coloring's  in person as it was online and it was with much excitement I tried it on when I got home.

It fit well, a little roomy with shapewear on but perfectly without. I got the Large, taking into account the lack of elastic in this style and that I’m sitting a bit bigger than I normally do and that I wanted to have the option to wear it without a corset if I wanted. The large was definitely the right choice.  It was easy to get into as well, with a back zip that didn’t catch and stayed up all day (zips that catch on the seam drive me crazy, especially back and side one!).

The first thing I need to say about this dress is that for a small busted pear girl, its honestly MAGICAL! The cut of this dress makes my waist look TEENY. Its not too big in my shoulders, which is a problem I often have with some styles of tops but mostly, it made my bust look big. I average a B to a C cup, brand depending so it was exciting for me to see such a fuller top half with this dress on. The shoulders are comfortable and don’t pull and the small capped sleeves really are a flattering touch. The bodice is lined as well, which was such a nice touch!

For this shoot I did wear my massive petticoat, but this dress is just as gorgeous with a smaller level of flair or even without a petticoat at all. The fall is beautiful and gives great curve to one’s shape. The bust is accentuated by some stitching in the middle as well, which adds to the fullness of the look. Accessorizing this look is so much fun! It’s a dream for matching brooches and accessories too. No rules, just play with what feels right for you!

The 50’s Harlow Dress in Halloween print will set you back $74.95 plus postage, which is a good price for such an amazing dress! If you’re after a fun Halloween dress that you can wear whenever you want to feel a little spooky, this is one to consider! If you aren't in Australia you can always buy Hell Bunny direct now too! Also, I am so pleased with my experience buying from Tragic Beautiful, that it definitely won’t be my last!

Also darlings, I'm current running a survey to see what you'd like to see more of on my page! If you could take too minutes to complete my survey I'd be super appreciative! Just trying to make my blog better! 

Til next time darlings!

Monday, 26 September 2016

Bubble Bubble Toil and Trouble ~ The Erstwilder Halloween Collection

Wearing Toil and Trouble Brooch
Growing up in Australia, Halloween wasn't a big deal. I never went trick or treating as it wasn't a think in the more regional areas I grew up and decorations weren't even in stores. As I came into my teenage years, Halloween started to get a little more traction here in Australia. Trick or Treaters started showing up on our doorstep and my friends started holding 'halloween parties' near the end of my high school life. Now as an adult, I still don't trick or treat (or lets be honest go to Halloween Parties) but I do enjoy incorporating fun Halloween accessories and prints into my wardrobe over the course of October and its definitely been catching on with our local brands! And Australian Accessory Brand Erstwilder are no exception!

This year, Erstwilder have released the cutest halloween brooches and I just had to share, because I believe that are not only fun but can be worn during other seasons! My personal favorites are the Bat Cat brooch, Cozy Cobwet and Toil and Trouble brooch. All of these brooches caught my eye for different reasons and they are all brooches I know I can happily wear outside of the festive season.

Wearing the Bat Cat Brooch
With a mini story of 'Am I the Hero that Erstwilder needs? Or the hero that Erstwilder deserves? One thing's for certain: I'm Bat Cat' the vibrancy of this little guys wings is what caught my eye. That and I just adore bats. I think they are such misunderstood creatures that have been pulled down my a lot of sterotypes. But whats better than a bat, but a bat cat. A fusion of two completely different types of cuddle combined into one!

Bat Cat has purple wings with a gold pattern through them. Bat Cat has a cute cat face with little legs and a tail. As someone who occasionally likes to dabble on the more alternative side, this little guy can definitely come to the dark side with me. His bright purple wings with his dark body makes him fun and easy to wear. He stands out on patterns as well as standing out on a plain black look as well! 

Wearing the Cozy Cobweb Necklace
This is my second Erstwilder necklace and I must say, its definitely the fun one. This necklace features a spiderweb that has the most beautiful shimmer pattern through the back, at a closer look making it look like spiderweb strands. The Spiders on the front are a red back spider and a little black one. These two little guys are happily chilling out together and it makes a great statement piece for a more gothy/vampy look or for darkening your favourite October Halloween looks. Its lightweight to wear, which is something I always feel is super important and its sits comfortably on as well.

Honestly guys, I cannot express how much I simply adore this necklace. Its such a fun piece thats still simple and a great way to compliment or make an outfit. This necklace is definitely proof that creepy crawlies can be cute!

Wearing the Toil and Trouble Brooch
The Toil and Trouble brooch is probably my favorite out of all these brooches. As someone who loved shows and books like The Worst Witch growing up, as well as loving the Mayfair witch series from Anne Rice and of course who could forget Harry Potter, I do have a deep love for witches in literature. So this little Cauldron for me is little bit of the things I loved growing up as a kid. 

The bright green and purple colours of the potion really make this brooch and I love the detail of the fire. It kind of reminds me of the part in Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince when Hermonie is trying to brew the potion to win the Felix Felicis. Or hiding in Myrtle's bathroom. Or both. Who doesn't love wearing some witchy goodness!

You can check out the rest of their Halloween collection by clicking here and snap up your own Halloween goodies! I honestly cannot wait to see the amazing outfits everyone wears over this Halloween period! One thing I adore about pinup and retro styling is the fun you can have with it! So why not incorporate some ghoulish glamour into your own wardrobe!

I hope you've all enjoyed this review! It was super fun to head into the cemetery again for some great shots. You can shop the new Erstwilder Halloween range in full by clicking here!

I'll be reviewing this hell bunny dress I bought from Tragic Beautiful next week!

Til next time darlings!

 Disclaimer: Whilst I received these brooches as part of a collaboration with Erstwilder, all opinions expressed are honest to help ensure the most accurate information for my readers. 

Monday, 19 September 2016

Missi does a conference ~ My first Problogger Experience

So as those who follow my Instagram will know, this past weekend I put on my big girl pants and flew to another state to attend my first ever Problogger event. I can already hear many of you, through your computer screen going 'Problogger what?'. That was honestly my response too when I was first told about it. But in regards to my blogging and seeing how far I've come with my social anxiety and anxiety in general, its been one the best experiences having a blog has enabled me to have. So what is Problogger and how is it I ended up attending? Well, it all started with an amazing man.

I kind of felt I'd hit a wall recently with my blogging. I'd been wanting to grow my blogging space into something more than it has been. I wanted to get off the treadmill of just reviewing things and start including content that means so much to me. As pinup bloggers, I find our blogs can sometimes become superficial and be about nothing more than how things fit and where to buy stuff. Not saying this is a problem or that anyone else should change how they run their blog. But for me, its been bugging me for some time now and I just wanted be able to give more, share more and make my blog space something more than what it currently is. The only issue is: I didn't know how. As stupid as that sounds, it was a real problem and it was one I was struggling to overcome. Here enters my amazing partner. He had heard about the conference and felt that it was important that I should go. He thought I could get a lot out of it in regards to learning new media types, building content and blog design. Even though we were due to move he went above and beyond and made sure I got there and I am eternally grateful for his hard work and his belief in me! I've never had someone believe in me like he does before. So last Friday, at the brisk hour of 4am I was awake to get myself ready to head to the airport for a 6am flight. I can tell you now, 4am isn't a pleasant hour to be awake for anything, especially with having my pole dancing class the night before I wasn't able to head to bed til around midnight as I needed to finish packing. With a lot of gentle encouragement (my hair hadn't set and I was rather panicked) and support I was soon bundled into the car, massive suitcase in tow to head on my first big adventure on my own as a young woman.

Pre-Flight Ticket Photo
Waiting for my mammoth suitcase
On the train to the resort
I am so incredibly grateful that flights were without any issues. I found myself sandwiched between two business men and I was soon napping happily between them. I woke just as the plane touched down and soon found myself navigating the comparatively small Brisbane airport to collect my massive suitcase and head to the train down to the gold coast. The train trip was 42 minutes longer than the trip planner online had estimated (ouch!) and I must admit, by the time I got off the train to get a cab to the resort I was feeling a bit worse for wear, very worn down and incredibly anxious about what I was facing. As someone with anxiety, the prospect of going to a conference was beyond terrifying. The fact I was getting there late just heightened the panic I was feeling. The cab trip was a matter of minutes and I soon found myself outside one of the fanciest hotels I'd ever been. I was staying at the RAVC Royal Pines Resort on the Gold Coast and it is pretty much the fanciest hotel I've ever stayed at. I went to check in before I headed down, so I didn't have to take my bag and to my initial confusion and later delight my room had been upgraded to a suite. Feeling a bit overwhelmed I headed up to my room, to find it the most beautiful room ever.

Pano View of my suite
Bathroom of my suite
Outfit day 1 (Accessories Daisy Jean, Miss Lady A Broad and Debstar Designs. Top & Skirt are Pinup Girl Clothing)

So with my bag dropped off upstairs and a quick outfit photo I swallowed my fear and headed down to register and head in. The first thing I saw was there were a LOT of people. SO SO many. Feeling overwhelmed by this sea of people I sat down at a table by myself, took out my booklet and took notes. Of course, I'd walked in when they were doing a meet new people exercise (oh the irony!!) and I found myself being asked to introduce myself to the people at my table but alas, I was sitting at a table by myself. The lovely ladies who run Aussie Blogger Podcast (Tan and Amanda) waved me down and got me to sit with them at their table to introduce myself. These lovely ladies use their blogspace to showcase Australian bloggers, as we are sometimes forgotten in the big world of blogging. Amanda, who very happily explained she was an introvert that learned to be an extrovert was lovely enough to take me around at morning tea (the food was incredible) and meet people. This simple act of kindness really helped me push myself forward and step out over the coming days to connect with new people. It did become incredibly obvious very quickly that retro bloggers were pretty few and far between at this event. In my first few hours I didn't come across a single one. The most prominent bloggers were mummy bloggers and food bloggers as well as modern fashion bloggers, which I found rather interesting. There were also a number of people who didn't have blogs at all, but were interested in starting one. I attended two workshops that morning around content creation before attending the lunch. By this time (midday) I was feeling pretty buggered and since my ticket included getting all workshops in video form after, I bowed out to go and have a bath and a nap, as I had a ticket to the networking meeting that evening. The hotel bed was INCREDIBLE and I had a good hour nap after a bath in that incredible spa. I got up and went down for the afternoon recap which featured an inspiring story about the founder of Thank You Water, an amazing company that uses the profit from its products to fund projects to improve the lives of people living in third world countries without access to water, food and other medical needs. It was an incredibly inspiring speech and I must say I was a little teary. I finished the afternoon recap and headed upstairs to get ready for my first ever networking night. 

Networking Night Outfit (Accessories ~ Daisy Jean & Debstar Designs. Dress is Pinup Girl Clothing. Shoes are Royal Vintage Shoes)
Outdoor Tent by Katalane Tents
Outdoor Tent by Katalane Tents
The networking night was an incredible experience. I'd met two other retro style bloggers (I'll introduce them a bit later) and I was able to have a good chat with them. I moved around a lot and tried to chat with a few different people, though being a pinup blogger meant we often had little to actually discuss that we both could relate to. I met some really amazing people, I was one of the last to leave the event (shock horror!) and I was feeling a bit of a happy buzz by the time I crawled into bed around midnight on Friday, my hair fresh in curlers for another big day the next day. I felt proud of myself and how far I'd come. 12 months ago I couldn't have faced a room full of people like that and been able to mingle and talk to them. That is such an achievement for me and I went to bed feeling incredible.

Outfit for Day 2 (Scarf is Daisy Jean, Earrings are Retro Resins, Necklace is Debstar Designs. Outfit is Pinup Girl Clothing and shoes are Royal Vintage Shoes)
Pano view of the morning speech
With Retro bloggers My Vintage Childhood and Lisa of Make Plus Do

Me with Nicole of Blank Pages and Empty Spaces
I donated to one of the sponsors while I was there. Orange Sky Laundry are a volunteer initiative that allows homeless people to have access to clean clothes
 I feel like I had more success on day 2 of this conference. i'd found my groove. I wasn't as scared to talk to people. I had morning tea and lunch with the lovely Nicole and her friend Mime. It was lovely to chat and get to know these ladies over the course of my time in Brisbane (we also did breakfast together on the Sunday and I hope to one day be able to catch up with them again when I get to head down to Melbourne in the new year!). I also got to spend more time chatting to the other two retro bloggers who attended the event, who I've tagged above. I had an especially great time chatting to Lisa, who is a keen retro sewer who made her outfits for the conference and looked amazing. 

I got a lot out of the workshops that day and took SO many notes. This conference was amazing on so many levels. It not only connected me to some incredible people, but it showed me that I can create the content I want for my blog space, I can expand it outside of just clothing reviews and there are ways to grow my blog space into something amazing. The whole experience left me feeling empowered, inspired and motivated to knuckle down and get things happening that I wanted to and I am SO incredibly grateful to my fella for making it all happen. I cannot wait to start making plans to work on new content for my social media and share more of the things I love with you all! This will definitely not be my last pro-blogger and I'm hoping to do more in the Olympus workshops next year!

Final Networking night (flowers ~ Daisy Jean, Dress is vivacious Vixen and bag is Lola Von Rose)
Finally got to meet Miss Honey Holloway!
I wrapped up my Problogger experience with an appearance at the final drinks on Saturday before slipping into something casual to finally meet the gorgeously hearted Miss Honey Holloway, who I've been following online for EVER. We had dinner and a chat which I found incredibly inspiring and reaffirmed a lot for me personally about where I want to go and what I want to do. We enjoyed the most amazing food before chilling for a chat. I was feeling incredibly by the time I rolled into my fluffy hotel bed, ready for another big day!

The Lovely Cassie and me

Getting inked by the lovely Nikki Palmer who works at the Painted Tattoo Lady Studio in Brisbane

The Start of Oscar the Dumbo Octopus
 Oscar the Dumbo Octopus all finished!

Sunday was an equally busy day! I had the absolute pleasure of shooting the lovely Cassie for something very special on Sunday morning, though we can't share it yet! Her and her hubby were gracious enough to give me a lift back to Brisbane so i didn't have to do another mammoth train ride and she came with me to get my first real ink (I kind of don't count my back tattoo as its a small script word). I've been following Nikki online for AGES and when I saw she was finally tattooing I knew I needed to make time to see her on the Sunday. And so Oscar the Dumbo Octopus was born! Inspired by this totally cute clip I saw online, Nikki captured exactly what I wanted and I'm absolutely smitten with him. He's so adorable and while it will be at least 6 months before I go under the ink needle again, I'm loving having this guy on my thigh! I handled the whole thing better than I expected (I was worried about it being super painful on my thigh but it was manageable) and Nikki was so awesome to get inked by! As I'm intending to come back up to the Gold Coast next year for the next event, I'll definitely be stopping in to get more ink done by the lovely Nikki then!

After spending my afternoon with the lovely Cassie and her hubby, they very kindly gave me a lift to the airport I was soon all packed up, my bag checked and on the plane home. The whole experience was absolutely incredible and while I loved it, I found that its taken me a fair bit to settle back into my routine this week, as it did leave me feeling incredibly drained.

I am so excited to implement the things I've learnt and start shaping my space to what I want to do, instead of simply doing what everyone else does. I cannot wait to start planning for the amazing things I want to share and bring to this space!

Watch this space lovely people and keep your eyes peeled for more amazing stuff coming soon!