There are some specific features that make up a good leopard print, in my opinion. Famously leopard print can either look incredibly expensive or incredibly cheap, and putting aside the impact styling choices can make on a leopard print item, I think the print itself needs to have two things to read as the former; a variation in its depth of background colour, showcasing darker brown and near black patches mixed in with the lighter gold swathes, and a variation in size, shape and openness of the spots.
These things, when done correctly, will make the print look more realistic, and thus, expensive. What irony, then, that one of the best leopard prints I’ve found in our vintage-inspired realm comes from one of our most budget-friendly brands: Hell Bunny. Their Panthera leopard print is luxe and rich, and is available on a range of items that covers everything from capri pants to dresses. So whether your leopard style icon veers more Peggy Bundy or more Jackie O, Hell Bunny is bound to have options to fulfill your heart’s purring desires.
Wicker handbags are one of my favourite things. Every summer I find myself buying more, then going to add it to my collection on my shelf and realising, oh, I have much more of these than I thought, I probably shouldn’t have bought another one…
And then I do it all over again. Considering that wicker bags are kind of delicate as far as handbags go, unable to handle an accidental bash against a wall or bump by a stranger without the risk of a snapped weave, that makes my compulsion all the worse. You’d think, then, that I would feel guilty about the subject of this post, but on the contrary, that delicate natural of my favourite arm candy is the exact reason I do not. Because sometimes with reproduction items, you miss out a bit on the magic of what the originals offered in the eras gone by, but sometimes reproduction fixes a problem that modern life only highlights, and these Hell Bunny bags do just that; say hello to wicker style handbags that don’t need babying!
If you’re a regular reader of this blog then you’ll have read me announcing at least a dozen times that it was love at first sight for me when I saw a certain dress, or skirt, or bag, or pair of shoes…okay, maybe less like a dozen, and more like a hundred. But what can I say? I find men hard work, but falling for pretty things I can twirl in is easy.
In this case, I actually saw the skirt version of this dress first, and thence came the fall. I quickly realised, though, that Voodoo Vixen would not be making the skirt in their plus sizes. Thence came the devastation. Such heartbreak! Why would they forsake me so? However, it was coming in a dress version, I was told, and so returned hope.
I wasn’t fully sold on the dress style when I saw it initially, for reasons I couldn’t quite put my finger on, but after mulling over the reality of missing out on this print entirely, as well as reminding myself honestly that I almost never wear skirts compared to dresses, I came around to the idea of the dress and decided to give this print a second chance. We could make it, this print and I. I just had to be willing to open up my heart again. And boy oh boy, am I glad I did.
If you’re a Miss L Fire fan you’re bound to be a lover of their Loretta heels. If you aren’t familiar with Miss L Fire, allow me to make the introduction. Miss L Fire is a vintage-inspired brand passionate about producing beautiful and comfortable shoes, often with a modern twist. Some of their designs are on the more quirky side of the style spectrum, sporting giant embroidered novelty cherries or 70s-esque large leather flowers, while many are more classic and reminiscent of the most glamorous eras in fashion history. The Loretta heels are part of that latter section of the line that harkens back to a time of elegance, and I am more than a little bit in love with them.
We all have things we like. You might like bodycon dresses, the colour black, cut outs. Your best friend may be in to watermelons, swing skirts, and novelty shaped buttons. I like all shades of yellow, dresses with lots of stretch, and peasant-style necklines. And, like anyone else, I get a bit excited when I find several of my favourite things represented in one item. In this instance, I have Doll Me Up to thank for this accumulation of Things That Make Amy Happy.
If you’ve been following this blog or my Instagram account for a long time then no doubt you’ll remember my signature red sparkly shoes. I had them in both sexy-skyscraper heeled and much-more-forgiving ballet flat forms, both pairs painstakingly and lovingly decorated with thousands of scarlet flat-backed crystals, each hand placed by myself over the course of many evenings. I wore them with almost every outfit, declaring happily that red goes with almost everything, I swear, but they make few appearances these days.
The reason is not that I have forsaken my love of a red accessory, but merely that crystal covered shoes are prone to losing crystals over time, leaving them looking a bit sad. It’s possible to replace the bare areas with fresh crystals, a patch-up job I undertook many a time, but eventually I just needed to make myself a fresh pair of the flats entirely and I lacked the time and motivation necessary to devote the several hours needed to that endeavor. What I needed, really, was a sparkly red shoe that could replace my signature crystal flats without losing any of the fun twinkle, while gaining a better sense of longevity. Hotter Shoes is here to answer that call.
I’ve been dressing in vintage styles for 5 years now, my love for swishy skirts, perfect curls and a crisp cats-eye wing ever-growing. Dressing in this way has given me an endless boost of confidence and an excitement to get dressed, replacing the common dread many face when having to consider what they should wear when they leave the house. For me, embracing vintage fashion has given more than just my wardrobe a new lease on life.
I tend to dwell in the 1950s, where the cinched waists and full skirts make me feel most at home, but embracing such an unusual style of dressing–by today’s standards–has also taught me that it’s good to shake things up occasionally with something different. For me, that tends to mean either slipping into a form fitting wiggle dress or winding back the clock a further decade to dabble in the styles of the 40s. Today, we’re looking at an example of the latter, by taking a spin in something that is a first for me, shockingly, even after 5 years of vintage dressing–my first ever tea dress.
May is always a great month; it encapsulates my birthday, which I really do drag out for the entire month. But even that aside, it’s been sunny, I’ve been able to spend a lot of lovely time with friends and family, and even though I’m generally not bothered either way by the Royals, I must admit I ended up being swept away by with the excitement surrounding the big wedding, and rather touched by it. Now we’re looking forward to June, which begins the string of summer birthdays among my loved ones that always makes for lots of laughs and fun. If the weather could settle on being sunny but as a mild 18c with a gentle breeze, that would set us up for perfection!
Summer is approaching, swiftly it feels with our recent bursts of sunshine, but I know the English weather so I’m certain that it can be relied upon to rain on our parade, quite literally, to keep that spring feeling alive for a few weeks more. My favourite apple tree hasn’t blossomed yet, after all, so until it does I am determined to consider it spring. It is, if you didn’t know, my favourite season, as well as the perfect excuse to frolic in every dainty floral frock in one’s wardrobe. Today I add another, with this gorgeous Beautiful Roses print Liliana by Lady V London.
Splendette, Bow and Crossbones, and Luxulite accessories finishing off an outfit to perfection
There’s a lot of small accessory brands out there in our vintage inspired community, but because they’re small companies, often owned and run by one woman doing everything herself, it can be hard to discover them because they don’t have the same advertising budgets as the larger vintage inspired clothing brands/shops we see constantly promoted on our feeds.
In my experience the best way to find new accessory brands is to check the tags and captions of the photos you see in your news feeds or the blogs you follow, so that when you see a fakelite bangle or a reproduction handbag you like the look of you can establish whether it’s a true vintage item or something currently for sale. All of these businesses below are ones I found scrolling through Instagram and spotting them on the arm or in the hair of one of my favourite fellow pinups. Continue reading