I don’t wear a lot of trousers or pencil skirts. I’ll be honest, as body positive as I am, I still find it hard not to feel self-conscious of my stomach in tight fitting clothing. It saddens me sometimes that I force myself to overlook dresses, skirts or trousers I want because I know I won’t have the confidence to rock them as consistently as I would need to in order to justify the purchase.
However, it’s just not practical to live all of one’s life in a swing dress. Sometimes pants are required. Sometimes a pencil skirt is just much more appropriate and attractive. And for those occasions I found the perfect solution: the Alika top by Tatyana.
It’s obvious that red is one of my favourite colours. It’s my go-to for lipstick 99% of the time, and my favourite shoe and accessory colour for 90% of pairings as well–honestly, half the time that I don’t wear red shoes with something it’s only because I’ve told myself I should stop being so predictable and repetitive, not because I think red shoes won’t work with that outfit. So, saying all that, it’s probably not surprising that a lot of the SS16 pieces I’ve been most anticipating release this season are items featuring a lot of red. The Tatyana Marnie dress is one of them.
I was recently very excited to attend the launch party for Atypical-girl.com, a brand new clothing website stocking a selection of carefully curated original vintage and reproduction clothing, aimed at retro loving dolls and girls with a fashion edge. Atypical Girl is different to your typical pinup clothing site because the focus is on finding your own style, whether that be with a truly authentic eye to a classic era or with a modern take on vintage looks you love. So I was very curious to attend to the launch party and see just what Atypical Girl would be about–and of course, it was no surprise that it was a great event held in a funky private member’s club, featuring a variety of excellent retro music, vintage canapes and even some kick-ass Go Go dancers. I was thrilled to meet Atypical Girl’s founder Simone Hadfield, @missturnstiles to you Instagrammers, who, yes, is as gorgeous, chic and lovely in person as you’d expect. I love me some Girl Bosses, and Simone is definitely one of them. Pictures of the event can be found on the Atypical Girl’s Facebook page, which you should go like. Bonus points to the first reader to count up the number of times I’m caught pulling a stupid face while actively engaging in conversation (It is, I’m ashamed to say, many times.)
After attending such a wonderful event it was obvious I needed something from the Atypical Girl range, and at Simone’s own suggestion I couldn’t help but agree that the Joan dress had to join my wardrobe. This green wiggle dress is a true classic, made of knitted twillit’s comfortable as well as flattering, and I love the waist detail of pleats settled beneath a fabric kind-of-belt that crosses at the front then fastens behind with a single button. The dress is truly timeless, and considering how killer it would look on Christina Hendricks’ character in Mad Men it is no surprise at all why this hot little item is named the Joan. All you redheaded ladies definitely need to pick up this colourway as it will be true magic with your ginger hair, but it’s such a universally complimentary colour that I can’t think of a single hair colour or skin tone that wouldn’t wow in this dress.
For those of you who read my last blog A Dress Named Alika about the Tatyana Alika dress you’ll know I coveted that dress for nigh on a year before I was able to make it mine. It was the gorgeous lattice detail neckline that made me want that dress so badly, so imagine my delight when I logged into the Tatyana website a little while back to check out their Buy One Get One offer only to find they now offered an Alika blouse with that same gorgeous lattice work and a flattering peplum cut. I literally gasped when I saw it, my heart rate increasing. I began swatting at my phone in a panic to load the purchase page as if worried every other pinup in the world might be making this same discovery simultaneously and could cause this item to go out of stock even as I was attempting to buy it. A bit dramatic, but sometimes I excited about pretty things.
With the item safely purchased, I could not wait for my package to arrive! And when it did I was just as in love with this blouse as I thought I would be.
When I was but a newbie pinup–when I was tentatively attempting to craft a retro look out of cheap dancewear circle skirts and still scared of red lipstick–there were 3 dresses I saw in my online wanderings that made me swoon and sigh with want and desire: the Pinup Girl Clothing Monica dress, their Sailor Swing dress, and the Tatyana (then Bettie Page) Alika dress. The Alika dress runs for $150 in the US and in the UK around £120, sadly out of my typical budget, so at the time I yearned and gurned and craved, stored it in the not-so-little part of my brain that houses my dream ‘one day’ wardrobe, and moved on with my life.
Until this summer, when I happened to have an upcoming wedding to attend, and the Alika dress was marked down to $120 in a sale. Our time had come! This would be the perfect opportunity to treat myself to this dress. The Alika, that black elegant goddess of glamour and style, was going to be my lady.
Now that we’re together I am so glad our time finally did come, because we were meant to be. Alika and I went for a little stroll together in the woods to share with you our love.