Saturday, May 28, 2011

Fancy Feet

Not really fancy, but just well-adorned. Of my many, many vintage wish-list items, shoes are easily at the forefront. Partly because I just love shoes. Really, it probably isn’t good how much I like them. Maybe its because they are both functional (cover and protect your feet) and aesthetically satiating – they present a chance to do as you will with pretty details and decoration, all on this tiny and concentrated canvas. And, unlike clothing, people don’t think its weird if you wear the same ones all the time, so you can get a lot of use out of them.

They’re also at the top of my list because I don’t have any (vintage pairs, that is), besides two amazing Daniel Greens (not taking those out of the house) and a mid 40s style sandal that is pretty fragile. This part of my wardrobe is left largely undeveloped due to money and the fact that size 8s are somewhat harder to find - the average ladies' shoe size in the 30s and early 40s was tiny! Here are a few pictures of shoes that I’ve coveted over the past few months - it was really difficult to narrow the list down! Taken from etsy, ebay, other blogs, the internets… unfortunately I didn’t do well at marking where I found them. Enjoy!

- Emily

Oh, how I love all of these. The rainbow woven style tie-up sandals would be perfect for the beach/sport, and I love the three at the top, especially the all-black ones. 

Friday, May 27, 2011

Cats & Berries - the Song

Hello chums and chumettes (mostly chumettes, I suppose),

My absence, if at all noted, is due to the fact that I’ve recently moved from Atlanta to Boston. I’ll be in Beantown for the summer doing an internship at a production company and taking a summer course at a nearby college. I’m really excited to be here, and hope that I make the most of it and don’t get city-shy and hide away in my apartment during my free time in order to avoid the confusion of public transport and the unfamiliar busy pace of the streets.
Anyway, I’m still feeling rather lazy in terms of posting (I spend way more time reading other blogger’s posts!) so here’s a quick one. I wanted to share with you a cute little clip “You’re the Cats”, a short musical number with Ben Lyon and Ona Munson from 1931 in the movie “The Hot Heiress”:

I saw this clip a few weeks before Gracie and I started talking about making a blog, and though it is by no means a lyrically sophisticated or musically poignant number, I do love it and think it’s cute. Anyway, as you can see, this is where Gee and I got the idea for the name of this blog!
Hope you are all doing well!

- Emily 

Doin' the Dirty

And by "the dirty" I mean procrastinating the dozen or so things I need to do over the next several hours, including writing a paper on a local Gothic Cathedral's architecture, creating tiny gardens and zombie food (unrelated) and starting and finishing an 8-10 page essay about historic gardens. Im starting to wish caffeine had an affect on me, but alas...
So, what better way to not do what I need to than by online shopping (no luck there of course) and blog browsing (sadly, there is only so much I can take in at once!) and posting?!
Here you have it folks! More pictures of my gorgeous family in the heart of the good ol' U.S.A., New York, New York. For the majority at least...

Ana at 15 years. Pre-glamour it seems... Still love it. Oakdale, NY, USA.
Ana outside of Tia Josie's house at 18 years (so she says....) Also, she looks A LOT like my mom here. Which makes sense, but it's still really weird.
Ana at 15 lounging in Oakdale, NY.

Monday, May 23, 2011

All I Want is Loving You and Desserts, Desserts, Desserts

Howdy'do, folks!

Gracie here to talk to you about (okay, mostly to show you) my fantastic treat-filled weekend with my mommy. I am lucky enough to go to school only two hours away from her house so I go there (too) frequently.  This weekend was the first I actually did some of what I had hoped to, however, so I am really really happy. Obviously.

So, first things first: DESSERTS.

This weekend I made two batches of ice cream and, consequently, two friggin' fantastic types of frozen goodies. If you want recipes let me know!

1) Chocolate covered strawberry ice cream bites.

this picture sucks, I know, but it's the only one I took of the finished product. Dumb me.

2) Mint ice cream-chocolate chip cookie sandwiches

I know the internet really downgrades the impressiveness of baking, but trust me, these were awesome. And I am generally very critical about my work, so you can have faith that these were actually good.

Next thing: Outfit post numero dos!

Today I wore all modern clothes!!! IT WAS MADNESS. Not really....
And, okay, when I say "modern clothes" I mean that they were made in the last few years by big manufacturers that sell modern styled clothes to lots and lots of people who often over look the more classic styles being sold. And I have no problem with wearing clothes like this if they look nice (which I think they do!) so, in that regard I am not a snob, but if we start in on the topic of other modern clothes... well, that's when I'll get a little pompous and mean and angry. So, lets save that for another day, shall we?

Anyway, since I actually left the house today (I had nothing left to bake...) to go see "Water For Elephants" with my mutti, I changed out of my strawberry-and-chocolate-covered '50s dress into this outfit.

The baby in my arms is Pi. She's pleasantly plump and the source of many-a-asthma attack of mine. But I love her.

Top: Anthropologie. (Oh how I miss having gifts cards for the lovely place)
Jeans (my only pair, mind you!) are hand-me down Lucky Brand. I think they're meant for boys though, since I got them from my cousin and I don't think he cross-dresses, though I could be wrong.
Loafers: Goodwill
The weird belt (which happens to be the only one I had with me) is a hand-me-down from my aunt.

In other exciting news, I finally invested in quality lipstick and liner. I had never owned lip liner before last friday, but now I don't know that I can go on without it. I bought MAC brand because I have heard/read really good things about it, it was not super-pricey (though it did cost over twice as much as what I paid previously.... I'm just really frugal, I guess) they have a color in matte finish that I really like (Russian Red), and it doesn't have the highest lead content, so I won't die as soon. I hope. I also finally replaced the eye liner my sister stole from me. So that was fun.
I was also really happy with how my hair turned out today, despite several preliminary un-victorious victory rolls this morning.
Gardenias in my hair always smell so nice and remind me of one of the songs Keira Knightly sings in "Edge of Love"

That's enough of my uninteresting mess of a weekend. Hope you lot had a great one!!

So long for now,


Friday, May 20, 2011

McCall's, 1942

By the time I discovered that my school has quite an extensive array of archived women’s interest and fashion magazines, the school year was weeks away from being over. Nevertheless, I spent quite a few afternoons holed up at the most private nook of the library I could find, flipping through pages of the past that delighted my history fascination and agonized my shallower fancies with longing. Reading articles such as “If You Say, ‘I’m Just Too Thin!’” and “The Inconstancy of Beauty” (both of which I will upload in later posts), and others relating to current events of the era, I found this treasure trove literally endlessly fascinating - my second day there I had this horrifying but morbidly amusing image of me spending the rest of my days there in an insane obsession, relentlessly trying to document every page and sigh over every fashion illustration, until I created my own tomb of magazines. I think many people are interested or amused by seeing examples of how ideas and events were perceived and written about in the past.
And although the writings were fun to look through, still my favorite part was the fashion illustration, especially in McCall’s Magazine. I started out looking though Vogue, but I found that the way they presented clothing (more artistically, either through fashion photography that was beginning to be experimented with, or with wispy and abstract illustrations) made it harder to see the clothing plainly and clearly. McCall’s was less fancy, and I liked their pages of straightforward color illustrations.
Below I’ve uploaded the few images I managed to get from a McCall’s Magazine in 1942. I mostly looked at archives from the 30s, but I picked up one from the 40s, and only got a few pages photographed before my camera’s battery got too low to take pictures. Also, please forgive the annoyance of a photographed page instead of a photocopied page – the copiers were not readily available for the amount of picture-grabbing I wanted to do. So I figured I’d show the 40s images first, and then work through the ones I got from 30s magazines. I hope you enjoy!

- Emily

I wish I could've gotten a better image of this. I just think its charming, the girls' patriotic color scheme and the cute GI in the reflection!

Don't you think the girl at the top looks a bit like a young Lana Turner? Anyway, I thought some other vintage gals might like to see some hair advice straight from the era-horse's mouth.

Click on the image to enlarge if you'd like to read this. An account of how to deal with the shift from the glamourous 30s wardrobe to the necessary practicality of a wartime 40s wardrobe. I am very modern in my desire for a large wardrobe; I am astounded but impressed with their statement that a basic wardrobe of 4 dresses and a coat could suffice! I think most vintage dressers have a very un-vintage problem with clothing accumulation, but I don't mind - while I find this simplicity admirable, I won't kid myself that I am at all interested in emulating it. I do, however, agree that quality is more important than quantity - I just would prefer to have both, ha! Anyway, I found the part about the defense factory girl's earning power very amusing - "think of all the War Bonds she can buy!". 

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

My Grand Gran

Here's some eye-candy for all of you who are as clothing, hair, hat and shoe obsessed as I am.
There are some really glorious things that were in my family's possession. Curses upon who ever decided it was a good idea to throw out the things they didn't wear anymore!

My Tia Middy and my grandma, Ana, in 1943 (-ish). 
Ana, a friend I have yet to identify, and Middy in 1943.

Another unidentified friend and Ana at 18.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Celebrity Celebration #1 - Alice Faye

As I am sure many of you know, last week on May 5th was Alice Faye's day of birth. She would have turned 96 if she were still alive. To celebrate I planned on treating my self to lots of ice cream and cookies. But really I was doing homework all day. Because this is college and I can do nothing else with my time.... three weeks left and then boredom! ... erm, I mean... freedom! Yay, summer time.

Ahh! Enough of my personal nonsense, back to Alice. She is one of my top five favorite actresses. I just love her so so so much. And Emily has come to love her just as much as I do, if not more. To be honest, when I saw her for the first time in "In Old Chicago" I wasn't all that impressed by her. I had rented that film because of Tyrone Power actually... he is so dreamy. Like melt your soul dreamy. ...Anyway, so I didn't really like her (because I am dumb and was envious she got hit on by Tyrone,) but then I watched "Rose of Washington Square" and "Alexander's Ragtime Band" (all because of Ty-Pow) and grew to love her and like him a bit less though I'd still go for him if I had a chance.

So what is my favorite film of hers that I have seen? "Tin Pan Alley" for sure. Though I haven't seen many more than those four, so I'm probably not the most knowledgable about which film of hers is the absolute best. What I love about her is how she was beautiful in a way I don't think a lot of other actresses were.  I mean, she had a sort of baby-face and a less than "ideal" nose. She was also a mediocre dancer (at least, compared to some of her very light-footed contemporaries), and had a deep singing voice (not that that was a bad thing at all, but just unusual at the time).  But for those things I love her more. She was also a really good person. She wasn't a diva and she cared about people. I think if I had been around she and I could have been friends.

So, for your viewing pleasures, here are some of my favorite photos of my dear Alice Faye and a clip from "Tin Pan Alley" of her and Betty Grable (another 1/5 of my favorites) preforming a beloved song.

Tyrone Power and Alice Faye in "In Old Chicago"

Alice and her husband Phil


I hope you enjoy her as much as I do!
- Gracie

P.S. Sorry I am not a great blogger, I am trying to finish school up for the term, so maybe in a few weeks I'll be able to keep up with everyone!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Yet Another Feast (For the Eyes)

Hello Blogoverse!
I’m just popping in to say hello, and to share some more lovely images with you. These are all from Silverbluestar's photostream (the same place I sourced these early 20th century images). These are mostly from the 20s and 30s, and once again, I just don’t get tired of looking at these. I didn’t even notice the lady bits in one image until about the fifth time I looked at it, I was so distracted with the vivid and enchanting colors and scenery!

I just love this one. If I had a place to decorate, I would frame it. 

By Brunelleschi, 1925.

By Brunelleschi, 1926.

By Brunelleschi, 1927.

By Coppa, 1923.

By Corbella, 1925.

By Meschini, 1916.

By Meschini, 1928. A lovely scene, but after looking at it for awhile I realized that it's kind of amusing that this lady is being wooed/serenaded by, quite literally, a clown. Who knows, maybe she's actually leaning over that wall thinking how to best give him the ol' brush off politely. But I doubt that, it wouldn't fit what seems to be Meschini's characteristic romance in his images. Perhaps the clown has a voice like Dick Powell, or he is actually in a disguise because of some complicated, slap stick comedy-like circumstances. Ah well. It's better to imagine, I think. 

By Meschini, 1930. I want that coat. 

By Meschini, 1938.

Hope you all are having a wonderful weekend!
- Emily

Monday, May 2, 2011

Tornadoes & Turbans

Hello (two or three) readers!

Not that you’ve particularly been wondering, but this past week has been rather busy for Gee and I, what with finals/midterms and the tornadoes that came through the south. Gracie was too far south to really be affected by them, but my county had a tornado watch and warning. This region isn’t exactly known for any sort of natural disasters, so the experience was both novel and a bit frightening.

We were told that there might be bad weather on Wednesday night, and nobody really expected anything to happen. But, I decided to be cautious for the sake of my vanity and my health, so I didn’t shower in the case that a.) it arrived whilst I was trapped in my nuddy pants or b.) it arrived late at night and I had set my just-washed hair in unflattering rollers. So I just did a dry set of pin curls, and climbed into bed around 12:30. Just as I was drifting off, I thought I heard sirens, but I wasn’t sure because it was so quiet. I pulled back the blinds, and lo and behold, right before my very eyes I saw the trees begin to sway and the rain begin to fall. So I went into the hall (I live in a coed dorm) and the girls were all gathered and giddy, as if there were a party and not a column of destructive air coming towards us. I ran back inside, wrapped a scarf around my head (because although pincurls don’t look quite as crazy to modern folk as rollers do, they still look funny), grabbed my laptop and a blanket, and headed to the window-less stairwell, where I proceeded to sit for about an hour while I shamefully tried to duck my unstyled and makeup-less head as handfuls of guys (some quite attractive) passed by.
But I am very thankful that all I lost was a bit of dignity, and not something much more serious, as thousands of people did as a result of the storms.
Serious and un-vintage bit over, here’s a quick little tidbit of vintage lest I be accused of turning this into my personal diary:

A couple of weeks ago I went to my school’s library and photographed some pages from vintage women’s magazines. They’ve got TONS of archives, from a variety of magazines, but I only looked at McCall’s and Vogue, from the 30s and 40s (though they’ve got archives as far back as the 1700s! I don’t remember what it was, but it was some fashion magazine!!) I plan on putting some of the pictures up later, as there is tons of style inspiration to be had from these pages, as well as some funny and antiquated advertisements, but for now, here’s a snap of a page from Vogue in 1940 (I forgot to record the exact issue!) where they brag about being responsible for beginning the turban trend. You should be able to click on the images to enlarge them.

Till next time!
- Emily