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.
Most pinups find that they often gravitate towards a certain cut of dress. I tend towards strappy swing dresses with a lower neckline because they allow me to stay cool in summer with the option to add layers for warmth in colder months. In winter, though, I do really love a sleeved dress–when I can find one that works for me.
I repeatedly torture myself by seeking out my perfect sleeved specimen; it has to be just the right shape, in the right colour or print, with a skirt that will actually hit me below the knee, and most importantly (and often not the case) with sleeves that will comfortably fit my large upper arms without making me want to cut them off after a couple hours of strained movement or painful digging and pinching. With all that to be considered, sometimes even if I love a sleeved dress I just won’t order it. I’ll feel sure that it won’t live up to my needs, or I’ll be cognizant that at this time of year there’s only so much wear I can get out of a sleeved style before it either A) is so warm it becomes impossible to wear through spring/summer even in England, or B) it looks so wintery in style that it would look silly wearing it in June, even if it is pouring with rain.
Well, finally I’ve found a dress that ticks all my boxes: it’s the right length, there’s no arm abuse involved in wear, it cinches the waist, has pockets, and it’s in a gorgeous vibrant print that will look good literally all year round. Ladies, I give you Darcy.
I think we all do it, buy multiple items of clothing that are similar to items we already own. Without realising it you end up with 5 plain red swing dresses, or 3 red based tartan circle skirts. It’s easy to do because when we love a particular colour or dress cut or pattern or print style all we know when we see a new example of it is that we love it, maybe forgetting that that’s why we already have 4 similar items already hanging in our closet. While I absolutely suffer this, I also do the opposite: sometimes I forget that I’ve grown to love something I didn’t used to.
For me, one such thing is mid-toned blues. It’s not a shade range I’m naturally drawn to for my own wardrobe, but I find people react with ardent appreciation when I wear blues. My best friend Giselle loves me in blues and always praises when I wear them, so much so that I think overtime she unwittingly trained me into loving them as well. Sometimes I forget that I now equally appreciate all blues, not just navy, to the point that when I first saw this Hell Bunny Montana print I almost passed it by, my inactive brain sure that it wasn’t ‘me.’ But wait, a small niggle suggested, quiet there at the back, as if waking up from a sleep. Look at that blue though, it said, reminding me that I now appreciate that tone, and the dashes of yellow and brown that mix together almost like gold. The green of mint peas, the navy and the white and the black. The cross-hatching and smudged quality that makes it feel like midnight. It’s beautiful.
So I looked at it again, and again, and again. I kept coming to the conclusion that deer dashing across a beshrubbed plain just wasn’t my typical Miss Amy May style of print.
Some might say if you can’t decide on something then you probably don’t really want it. Not me. I say if in some way you can think of reasons why you shouldn’t or wouldn’t like it, yet it keeps drawing you in, you should go for it. Sometimes the heart wants what it wants, and so does your closet.
If this dress looks familiar that’s because it is. The Aberdeen dress was first released for AW15, I remember vividly because the first iteration in the green and navy Dublin tartan so enamoured me I ordered it as soon as I first clapped eyes on it online. It came with me to the USA for my October trip to attend a friend’s wedding in Virginia and visit another friend in Texas, and though I massively overpacked for that trip and ordered at least 6 other dresses to greet my arrival at my friend’s house I wore it twice on that 17 day trip. Because that’s the thing about a good dress, one good wear deserves another. And if you’ve got one good dress in a great print or colour, I’m a firm believer that it deserves to be produced in yet another, just so that crazy dress addicts like me can enjoy the same wonderful dress in a second (or third, or fourth!) colour. A colour for every occasion and for every season!
Hell Bunny have humoured me, and every other Aberdeen lover out there, with a new ice blue tartan for our coming winter, so just in case the green/blue Dublin or the white/red Stewart tartans didn’t grab you, this frozen frock can.
You guys must know this by now; I’m a burgundy fan, and I don’t mean the wine. For a long while it seemed hard to find vintage inspired pieces in this colour and given its tone-perfect match for wear in colder months it always baffles me that it isn’t more widely utilised for AW lines by repro brands. In late summer as I waited for the new season’s catalogues to go out I lived again in hope that there would burgundy pieces for me to buy, to wear, to love. The first line I previewed was Hell Bunny’s and what would you know, there it was, the Sherwood 50s dress, sleeved and cute and available in the burgundy of my heart’s desire. Hell Bunny, you darlings, you’ve answered my wishes again.
You might recognise this dress as one of last winter’s bestsellers for Hell Bunny. I missed out on it in my size back then in all three colours it came in, black, navy and green, all of which I loved and found it hard to choose between. I loved it then and I love it now, so I was very excited to learn my chance to own it had not entirely disappeared. Behold and rejoice, for Hell Bunny has some stock left on their website! Ladies who, like me, thought this dress was long gone will want to act fast because it’s even lovelier than I had hoped.
You might not know it because I wear dresses almost exclusively, but I own quite a few skirts too. Whether circle or gathered, when I spot a new vintage-style skirt that makes me swoon I am just as quick to order it as I am a dress. Somehow, though, they seem to get royally shafted in my dress-to-skirt wear ratio. I thought this was because I am a crazy person who makes no sense (and that may be the case on a separate matter entirely) but recently I began to wonder if it’s because I just don’t own enough tops. And not just enough tops, but the right kinds of tops.
Comfortable tops that fit properly and are sleeved for winter. I don’t want something cheap and flimsy that’s going to fall apart after a couple of washes, nor do I want a top like that to cling to all my lumps and bumps. No, I need sturdy tops that can be relied upon and reached for at the last moment, without the need for such mental preparation as ‘Oh, yeah, if I go buy a different bra and a camisole, and maybe don’t bend over while I wear it or eat much, that would look really good to wear on Tuesday night with my blue skirt.’ No thank you.
But the Sophie top, by Voodoo Vixen? Yes, thank you. Thank you very much indeed.
You don’t see houndstooth used as regularly in reproduction clothing as you’d expect, for some reason, though I can’t fathom why. It’s a print I love and feel is under-appreciated, so the first moment I saw this Hell Bunny dress at London Edge in September I was smitten. It went immediately onto my ‘When’s this coming out? Must buy, MUST BUY’ list and since then I kept checking any Hell Bunny stockists I could find to see if this dress had been released yet.
Despite that, I very nearly missed out on this dress as my size sold out quickly in many places, but I’m thrilled I managed to snag it. If you love the style of this dress, you’re going to want to scour the interwebs for any available left in your size or else be prepared to act quickly when the second run of stock comes out later in the season. Because I can tell you this, the moment I tried this dress on, it became one of my all time favourites.
Have you figured out by now that I like green? Rich, emerald green makes me happy. It’s a colour that is surprisingly hard to find in vintage inspired clothing and I can’t at all figure out why. Jewel toned greens look good on pretty much everyone, so you’d expect it to be the kind of colour that is offered widely across all kinds of clothing, dresses and sweaters, skirts and blouses, shrugs and…okay, emerald trousers might be a bit too much for most people, but you get the idea, right? I’m a fan. I’m keen on green. And it frustrates me to no end when I’m putting together an outfit that would pair beautifully with a pop of emerald green, except nowhere can I find what I’m looking for to complete my vision. There are fewer things sadder than the days when the internet search engine fails you. Oh modern life, you make everything so easy yet so dramatic.
But oh ho, what hence! Is that Voodoo Vixen coming to my aide, providing me with green lovelies a plenty this chilly and festive season?
Why yes, yes it is. Continue reading
The Keely dress is one of the new Hell Bunny pieces that I somehow manged to totally miss when I previewed the line at London Edge this season. I don’t know how, because when I flicked through their complete catalogue online a couple weeks later it was an instant screen-shot, must-have piece. It’s more of a 40s cut than my usual fare, but I was really excited (and only a little bit anxious) about trying it. I needn’t have worried: this dress is amazing.
With a full skirt and a modest but prettily pleated bust, it’s work appropriate, vintage inspired and downright beautiful.