Saturday, 23 January 2016

Everybody is a part of everything anyway, you can have everything if you let yourself be

I recently started a new sketch journal and I really love how it's coming together so far, even if I am just a few pages in. I picked something spiral bound, usually I go for moleskines which aren't practical as I like to build up the pages so much. They're also much easier to draw with as you can flip the entire thing back on itself which is much easier for drawing on the go.

This is my favourite spread so far. The postcard was received with a vintage clothing order.

I changed my hair too. I've wanted green hair for the longest time, but haven't had the courage, telling myself all the excuses. But then I ran out of them, and before I knew it the dye had turned up on my doorstep. I love it, I haven't felt this excited about my appearance in a long time and it feels so very me. I couldn't help but have a little chuckle when going through the dying process though, remembering the story of Roger Taylor dying his hair green by accident by over processing the blond - then getting really upset and trying to destroy all photographic evidence. Bless!

I can't normally be bothered with the sales, but I ended up looking in Topshop to kill time and saw this wonderful technicolour bishop sleeve poking out the sale rail. I grabbed for it instantly, confused as it felt and looked vintage, but in Topshop?? It is vintage, sold by a brand called 'Loving Youth'. They've hacked the bottom off and poorly hemmed it, I imagine it was once a beautiful maxi dress, unmistakably from the '70s. I hope it was damaged and they didn't attack a perfectly good vintage dress. I had to rescue it, it'll look fab with my vintage suede vests and a pair of coloured tights to cheer it back up again. It felt like fate that I should find it.

I also recently bought this little bundle of original Biba make up! Vintage make up isn't something I'd ever really considered owning before, I'd thought it unusable and just decorative knick-knacks. But all of the things I bought are deadstock from when the store went bankrupt in 1975, so perfectly hygienic and I'm obsessed with the colours. I debated a little with myself over whether I would use the products, but I definitely shall. I have no need to preserve them, and I don't believe there's anything dangerous in the ingredients, we're not talking back in the days when they used lead after all!

A little different from your modern contour palette! The little compact is perfect and I can imagine slipping it in my handbag to touch up my make up on the go.

Dreamy powder tints for eyeshadow. They're beautifully pigmented, much more so than modern equivalent brands.

This nail varnish is 40 years old and perfect, whereas I have nail varnishes I purchased a year ago that are a gloopy mess in their bottles already. It's a beautiful metallic rust colour, the photo here really doesn't do it justice.

This shimmery blue foundation feels as glam rock as you could possibly get! It reminds me of Bowie and Marc Bolan each time I look at it. They had a separate product called "China Girl Cheeks", whereas this is "China Girl Foundation", so I'm not sure if originally this would of been intended to wear over the entire face like we think of foundation today? It'll look perfect as a highlighter, especially above the lilac contour, like Twiggy in her Biba make up below.

Gorgeous Biba dolly Madeline Smith, and below a shop girl working her shift at the Biba make up counter. I love how opulent Biba were, providing affordable glamour to the everyday girl. Nowadays these kind of extravagant aesthetics would be reserved for high end stores, which is truly a shame.

Monday, 11 January 2016

News guy wept and told us earth was really dying, cried so much his face was wet then I knew he was not lying

Look up here, I’m in heaven
I’ve got scars that can’t be seen
I’ve got drama, can’t be stolen
Everybody knows me now

- Lazarus                                                                    

I don't even know what to say? What can be said? All words feel trite and empty. I woke up to the news and couldn't compute it, I still can't.

It's so strange when a public figure dies, really it has little meaning beyond the emotional. You didn't know him personally, so nothing is physically missing from your life, you can just carry on as normal. But there's a huge David Bowie shaped hole in the universe now, which can never be filled by another and somehow the world feels a whole lot dimmer for it.

All of my favourites and heroes are either over 60 or already passed, so it's a fact I've come to accept long, long ago that I would have to witness death snatch these wonderful people from our lives, irreplaceable people who've inspired and changed the face of our world forever. Unfortunately it doesn't make it any less shocking or heartbreaking when it does happen. All the more as these fantastic souls feel so ageless and eternal, such a part of our landscape, that surely they must be immortal. Childish and naive but true nonetheless.

I wanted to draw something to commemorate. I'm not thrilled with how this came out as I've had low energy today, but I have a hopefully better idea which I'll try and draw later in the week.

Oh I’ll be free
Just like that bluebird
Oh I’ll be free
Ain’t that just like me

- Lazarus                                                                   

Friday, 1 January 2016

Thrifty finds

'Home' for me is really great for vintage and records - something I completely took for granted until I moved away and saw how much scarcer and more expensive these things are where I am now. So when I knew I'd be going back for Christmas I hoped I might find some wonderful things. And I picked up a whole bunch of goodies!

There was a big pile of different vintage fabrics and curtains, some of them really beautiful. I fell in love with a pair of truly psychedelic silk curtains in a multi coloured paisley pattern, but unfortunately they had a price fitting for how wonderful they were. I did however find this little floral off cut of fabric for only £1. It's so pretty and delicate I couldn't leave it behind, I love the flowery trim. I have about a metre of which I'm undecided what to do with so far, but even if I only use it as a tablecloth I'll be perfectly happy.

I've been desperately in want of a new purse for a long time now, my old one I'd been using every day for nine years and it was literally falling apart and very little use. I'd of been happy with a modern purse and wasn't particularly on the hunt for a vintage one, but I couldn't find anything in a decent size, all modern purses are absolutely huge! I don't want something that's going to fill up my entire handbag all by itself. Walking into the little vintage store I wasn't looking for purses, but when I saw a basketful of them thought I'd may as well give them a look. And I'm so glad I did as I found this little tan leather beauty! It looks as if it's never been used, or if it has it's only been lightly. It'll be such a pleasure pulling this out of my bag, and to think it only cost £6. Being vintage it's obviously missing a little feature we take for granted nowadays: pockets for your credit cards! But luckily I only have the one card so it's not a problem as I can slip it in with my bank notes.

I was also pleased to find this little floral 1970s tin. I already have one exactly the same in a different pattern, as can be seen here. I keep it next to my record player as it's the perfect size to store my record cleaner, record brush and cloth, scales and 45 adapters and such. It's such a handy size that I know I'll make use of this one in no time. I bought both tins from the same store years apart, a funny coinsidence.

This lovely 1970s sweater was being hidden away underneath a jacket and was very almost overlooked. It's in such good condition I expected it to cost much higher than it's £8 tag so I was quick to grab it! It'll look perfect with a mini skirt and boots.

I was paying at the counter when I noticed a jar of brooches I'd overlooked, with this perfect enamel daisy lying on top. An enamel flower pin is something I've wanted for the absolute longest time, but have never been lucky enough to find one in the flesh so I was quick to snap this up. It wasn't cheap at £10, but it's in beautiful condition and I felt it absolutely worth it - I've seen them sell for much higher!

I also found this wonderful cropped jacket for an absolute steal. It's made from a spangly lurex and will dress up my colourful tent dresses just perfectly. The label is 'Mary Fair, 18 Baker St' which I can't find anything about. I asked my mum hoping she might know as she grew up a stones throw away in Marylebone, but she laughed and said Baker Street boutiques were way out of her budget in the '60s! If you know anything about Mary Fair, do let me know, it's such a beautifully made little jacket and I'd love to know it's background.

This 1950s magazine rack I've had my eye on for the past year, it's brown and mustard and quite lovely but cost just that little bit more than I wanted to spend. This visit they were having a sale, so I grabbed it straight away! I love these little magazine racks, they're the perfect size for storing LPs. I can put my most played ones in here to make them easier to grab.

I also had a lot of luck in the two record stores I visited! I bought 16 LPs and 5 45s for £40! I'm lucky if I can find them for under £10 each where I live currently, and that's in poor condition. I went a little mad and grabbed some LPs I'm less familiar with just because I liked the covers or what not. I also found a few I've been after for a long, long time. I've always struggled to find The Kinks, but was lucky enough to find two original pressings. Aladdin Sane is a most welcome addition to my Bowie collection. I had to laugh finding Sheer Heart Attack by Queen - I'd been looking for this album for years and had only recently been able to add it to my collection. Then I found two more copies! Although I already own it, I get far to excited finding anything Queen related so just had to get one of them and for only £3 why not?

I also added two Christmas LPs to my collection as they were out for the season, even if I won't be listening to them for a year now. I've found myself wishing for some festive records to listen to, and these are perfect. The Christmas Album particularly, it's a Now That's What I Call Music compilation that my mother used to own in cassette form when I was little, so the cover art brought back wonderful memories and it's got a fab track listing including Wizzard, Queen, Slade, Greg Lake, etc.

I also had a quick sort through the 45s and found these. I'm less fussed about 45s so I try to only buy picture sleeves unless it's an artist I collect such as Pink Floyd or Queen. I already own the sleeve to Thank God It's Christmas, but the actual disc inside when I bought it was for Bohemian Rhapsody / I'm In Love With My Car, so I'm glad to now actually down the disc! Similarly, though one of these David Bowie sleeves is for Ashes to Ashes, it actually contains Life On Mars? The other Ashes to Ashes is an alternative version of the song, and although I already own Somebody to Love it's in a plain sleeve rather than the picture sleeve so I'm glad to add that to my Queen collection. And Instant Karma! just happens to be my favourite John Lennon solo song.

I'm not sure how I'll fit everything in my already overflowing suitcase, but I'm a determined girl so I'm sure I'll manage it!
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