Sweet Violet [Voodoo Vixen]

The first time I clapped eyes on this Voodoo Vixen dress was in the briefest glimpse of a behind the scenes snapshot Miss Victory Violet posted on Instagram while she was modelling it for their SS17 catalogue. It was instant love, immediate obsession. Never mind that all I could see of it was the neckline, never mind that the picture was a selfie more so than a dress sneak peek. That neckline was all I needed to know that it would be a perfect vintage morsel, and a bestseller to boot. I was not wrong.

Voodoo Vixen Violet Floral Trim dressVoodoo Vixen Violet Floral Trim dress Voodoo Vixen Violet Floral Trim dress Voodoo Vixen Violet Floral Trim dress Voodoo Vixen Violet Floral Trim dressVoodoo Vixen Violet Floral Trim dress Voodoo Vixen Violet Floral Trim dressVoodoo Vixen Violet Floral Trim dressVoodoo Vixen Violet Floral Trim dress Voodoo Vixen Violet Floral Trim dress Voodoo Vixen Violet Floral Trim dress Voodoo Vixen Violet Floral Trim dressDress: Violet dress C/O Voodoo Vixen
Bag: Vintage
Cardigan: New Look
Shoes: Old Pinup Couture

The surprising thing about Voodoo Vixen is that, somehow, they always seem to make me fall in love with styles featuring pink. I don’t know how they do it, because the passion with which I hate certain shades of pink is nothing less fiery than that of the surface of the sun. And yet for several seasons in a row they’ve created styles featuring pink that have been some of my season’s favourites. It is super weird and I don’t really know how they’re doing it (Witchcraft? Hypnosis? Hallucinogenics infused fabrics??) but I’m not mad at it. Three of my favourite five styles from this season feature pink heavily or, like this Violet dress, are just downright pink, and yet I don’t feel like the impostor I usually do when sporting these shades.

To be honest, I actually think this dress is a peach, with pink leaning tones depending on the light. Still, regardless of the technical colour, or perhaps because of it, this dress is perfection in my eyes. The embroidered floral trim of the neckline feels so authentically vintage to me that it almost hurts. The fabric is non-stretch and has a subtle, dainty criss-crossing of white stitching that creates a tweed-like finish, except lightweight enough for summer. There are pockets, huzzah, and the 28 inches long flared swing skirt will house a slim volume petticoat for a nice floaty skirt feel should you not want to wear it alone. Balancing out the non-stretch fabric is the shirred back panel and the adjustable shoulder straps which make the fit of this dress more flexible from body to body.

Still, saying that, I’ll admit the non-stretch fabric and my current measurements put my usual Voodoo Vixen XL size at near risk of not fitting me in this dress. My 45 inch bust really wasn’t keen on playing along with the side zipper, but changing my usual style of bra for my WKD longline merrywidow cinched everything in tight enough that I could zip up. And thank God, because I truly might have cried if I hadn’t been able to fit this dress. The waist flat measures 32 inches with just enough give to max out at 34 inches, barely, while the 38 inch bust can stretch to 43 inches thanks to the shirring in the back panel. All that makes this the most true to the size dress I’ve ever had from Voodoo Vixen, which typically sizes a little larger than their size chart states, so absolutely make sure to check the chart for the correct size before you order. Once you do, though, I’m sure you’ll end up with a dress you’re as obsessed with as I am.

And, you know, Voodoo Vixen, if you feel like making this dress in white next year with yellow floral trim, I’d be cool with that. You know, whatevs. (Frantic internal screaming of longing.)

The Violet dress comes in sizes S-XL for £47. I fully expect stock to sell out fast, so do be aware that if Voodoo Vixen sell out of their own stock that their stockists may still have stock as well, and that a restock will be coming in April. Voodoo Vixen ship internationally.

Look For The Lighthouse [Hell Bunny]

Let’s state the obvious right up front: I’m a fan of nautical prints and styles. Considering I don’t actually like swimming, going on boats, sunbathing, or anything else that happens near the sea really (except eating ice cream,) I can only assume what I love most about the theme is the combination of red, white and navy blue, three of my favourite colours to pair together. Plus, there’s often stripes in nautical prints, which is clearly a forever winner in style, and sometimes cute things like anchors and ship wheels as well, so I guess I’m just superficial and only care about appearances when it comes to this topic?? (Appearances and ice cream.)

Oh well, I’ll try to remember to feel awkward about it while I frolic in my cute new Hell Bunny nautical get-up at Eastbourne Pier. (Spoiler alert: no I won’t.)

Hell Bunny Coco Top and Lighthouse 50s SkirtHell Bunny Coco Top and Lighthouse 50s SkirtHell Bunny Coco Top and Lighthouse 50s SkirtHell Bunny Coco Top and Lighthouse 50s SkirtHell Bunny Coco Top and Lighthouse 50s Skirt Hell Bunny Coco Top and Lighthouse 50s Skirt Hell Bunny Coco Top and Lighthouse 50s SkirtHell Bunny Coco Top and Lighthouse 50s Skirt Hell Bunny Coco Top and Lighthouse 50s Skirt Hell Bunny Coco Top and Lighthouse 50s SkirtHell Bunny Coco Top and Lighthouse 50s SkirtHell Bunny Coco Top and Lighthouse 50s Skirt

Top: Coco top C/O Hell Bunny
Skirt: Lighthouse 50s skirt C/O Hell Bunny
Shoes: Navy Jessie textured wedges by Lulu Hun
Hair Flower: Red Signature Rose Double by Daisy Jean Florals
Bangles:  Bamboo bangles + Splendette Bamboo woven bangle
Bag: Red Vintage Inspired Bag by Lola Von Rose

The Coco top is a style first released last season, released again this Spring/Summer in two new colour combinations, including this white/blue stripe. I love that it feels like a design that could have been worn during any decade in the past, fun and simple without being dated or era-specific. I can picture my non-vintage style friends throwing it on in summer with a pair of shorts or jeans with no problem, but paired with a vintage hairstyle and some killer accessories it’s nautical vintage cuteness all the way!

This fine knit sweater features a knitted nautical collar that ties sweetly at the bust and flows into a rectangular block collar in the back. The hem and cuffs are ribbed, the latter with enough give that they didn’t feel tight or uncomfortable on my chunky upper arms. It’s a simple, comfortable staple piece, versatile enough to be worn with almost any bottom–picture it paired with swing skirts, capri pants, cigarette pants or even swing trousers, and I guarantee you can envision all of those options resulting in an outfit that gives off a cute and casual vibe. This size 16/XL I’m wearing is true to size, so it fit me close to the body in a flattering skim without clinging or stretching out the knit.

Then there’s the Lighthouse 50s skirt. Ah, this skirt. The moment I first saw it online I screenshot it and put it on my ‘I know you’re saving but you’re clearly going to have to buy this’ list. Soon afterwards I heard there was going to be a dress version of this print, so for a while I held out sensibly, telling myself I would buy only one of them and would need to see them both before I decided. Now I’ve seen the previews of the dress version and, you know, I’ve obviously decided I need to own them both, and of course I have, because look at that print! With a hearty dose of red, white and blue already recommending it to me, it also features an interesting and adorable mix of boats, sailor’s knots, stripes and, of course, lighthouses. It’s immediately eye-catching but not obnoxious or loud, which is just the type of balance I look for in my prints.

The skirt features wide box pleats that create a flattering flow of fabric from the waistband but don’t limit your ability to achieve some lovely fullness with a medium volume petticoat. It closes with a center back zip topped with a button and it’s got pockets, perfect for stowing your sunglasses, phone, lip balm or anything else you might need out and about on a summer’s day. Made of 100% cotton, this skirt has zero stretch and measures true to size, so I sized up from my usual Hell Bunny 16/XL to the 18/XXL so that I could wear it comfortably. The waistband measures 36 inches flat, so it is a little loose on me but better that than muffin-top unbearably tight, as the 33 inch waisted size 16 would have been. The skirt is 26 inches long and it’s already served me well through a seaside walk and a family roast dinner, so it’s shaping up to be a beautiful relationship already.

The Coco Top comes in 3 colourways (white with navy stripes, white with black stripes, and white with red and black stripes) in sizes XS-4XL for £25.99. The Lighthouse 50s Skirt comes in sizes XS-4XL for £29.99 – £32.99, but the discount code AMYMAY20!% will get you 20% off any order from Hellbunny.com, which ships internationally.