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Sunday, May 22, 2016

Goodbye Blogger, Hello Wordpress!

Hello! Some of you might have already heard but about a week ago I made the change from blogspot to wordpress and so if you are following me via GFC or blogloving you will no longer get an update when I have a new post up. I apologize for the inconvenience but the good news is that both of my blogs are now together on one page that is so much easier to navigate! You will see that there are a few options for how you can subscribe to my posts on there that makes it nice and easy for us to keep in touch. To see more photos of this outfit from OceanfrontBoutique head on over to my new page, Harlow Darling!

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Shhh-shoo baby, shoo, shoo!

Emmy Design are a brand known for their high quality vintage reproduction designs that feature a beautiful range of clothes from the thirties to the sixties. I was recently asked to review a piece from their  SS16 collection! The Lemon Shoo Shoo dress and bolero set was inspired by a 1940s dress from the designers private collection and named after the Andrews Sisters song Shoo Shoo Baby. I love bolero sets for the way that you are getting two dresses in one and depending on how they are styled you can put together an outfit that is more serious work friendly and still fine to wear to the beach.

This set is made of crinkle and crease resistant bengaline and after a long car trip and walking around all day in the Shoo Shoo dress I was pleasantly surprised that the fabric stayed clear of any frustrating creasing and looked pristine all day long. The bolero was great for keeping my back and shoulders protected from the sun and the fabric was light enough to keep me from over heating in our harsh climate, this is definitely the dress you are going to want to pack if you are heading on holiday somewhere sunny and fabulous!

Emmy Design use German/Scandinavian sizing so it is important to measure yourself and consult the size chart on their website to work out your size. I am wearing a size 36 and found that the sizing runs true to size and the fit to be extremely comfortable and easy to move in. An especially great dress if you want to go swing dancing!

Lemon Shoo Shoo dress - courtesy of Emmy Design
B.A.I.T - shoes

Thursday, March 3, 2016

The Reception

Photography by Cassandra Sutton
Our wedding was a family affair where everyone got involved and lent a hand, from those that collected coffee jars throughout the year for the table lights, to the ones who made sausage rolls and did all of the electrical wiring for our lighting set up. The reception was in part to thank everyone who worked hard to make the wedding happen, and a respite from what was a long day full of rushing around with hardly a moment to eat. With everyone so hungry, the food came out very quickly and everyone dug in right away so there are no photos as food started to come out while our photographer was taking some final portraits of Hugh and I in the quickly fading evening light.

It was important to us that our wedding reception had the feeling of a fun low key family barbecue with simple, unpretentious wholesome food. We had a variety of home cooked food as well as a huge roast brought in by a catering company. And we ordered pizza, simple plain old pizza from Dominos. Because who doesn't love pizza? It was not the sort of affair where guests were presented with a riddle of forks for various mollusks, and although champagne was served guests were encouraged to drink it from the bottle.

Our wedding cake was home made because wedding cakes are such a headache. After much frustration dealing with various wedding cake businesses and explaining that I detest fruit cake and fondant, I had my mother in law bake our wedding cake. It was a delicious and very rich caramel mud cake.

There were speeches, wheel barrows full of beer and even some cheeky fireworks provided by a mischievous uncle. Unlike the wedding ceremony which was very serious, the reception was very informal with guests helping themselves to food and alcohol and everyone spreading out in their groups to play cards and chat. There were certainly some guests that were worse for wear the next morning!

We were lucky with weather that weekend and although we had bought a large marquee there was no need for it and we were able to enjoy sitting under the canopy of the beautiful fig tree. Later on in the night it did get a little chilly since it was spring and guests were provided with blankets.

Looking back now I am so pleased with how everything worked out and I don't think there is anything I would have wanted to do any differently. That is not to say that the lead up to the wedding wasn't without it's obstacles and bumps in the road, or nights spent crying over Pinterest, but all of this was overcome.

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Our Vintage Wedding: Ceremony

Photography by Cassandra Sutton

I have always wanted a very traditional and sober wedding. To me a wedding is a serious and solemn occasion and it was important to us that our ceremony was incredibly formal and dignified. The whole ceremony was a surreal experience and looking back on it now everything went so fast that if it wasn't for these photos the whole thing could have been written off as a day dream. 

Friday, February 19, 2016

The Bride Wore Vintage

Photography by Cassandra Sutton

Like many of you in the vintage community, our family and friends are not actually into vintage. While I do have my vintage friends that I have met through blogging, none of our friends and family involved in the wedding are into vintage and so it was important to me that I wasn't forcing vintage styles on those who were not enamored with the look the way I am.

My number one priority with picking the bridesmaids attire was ensuring that the dress all of the girls would wear was one that everyone felt good in and would be able to wear after the wedding as well. The last thing I wanted was for my friends to wear dresses that they hated and that were impractical to wear ever again, the same being for shoes as well. As a result we settled on a dress that reflected the aesthetic of the wedding and one that would be comfortable to wear for the festivities after the ceremony. Bridesmaids dresses in the fifties were typically very formal - lots of tulle and lace - so older members of the family who had got married in the fifties were confused that I opted for such simple dresses for the girls despite aiming for a fifties look!

The reason I did not go for more extravagant and traditional bridesmaids dresses was because of what it would cost my bridesmaids. Although there were some amazing vintage reproduction dresses on offer that would have made great bridesmaids dresses, they were also a few hundred dollars than I was comfortable with asking my friends to pay. I know that I personally would not be happy paying that much for a dress I would wear once, especially if it was not my style. I think it is important that when you are planning a wedding that you take into consideration what people who are involved are going to be able to afford to spend.

For Bonnie, our flower girl, we decided on a dress that was more dramatic than the bridesmaids dresses as she would be the first one to walk down the isle and it was important that her entrance made an impression. As for the groomsmen it was as simple as me telling them what to wear because men generally don't care whether a particular colour suits their complexion/hair colour...They were however allowed to pick out their own novelty cuff links to customize their look.

I wore an original fifties wedding dress that had been made in Paris and was in near immaculate vintage condition save for a few parts where the lace had started to detach. This had been the dress of my dreams for many years from when I saw a near identical dress in a fifties Vogue and decided then on that I would only get married in a dress like it. At first I went to a fitting in an actual wedding dress shop that specialized in vintage reproduction dresses but found the incredibly patronizing staff not worth my time or money, and frankly their quality and dresses were not that great either. So I returned to looking online, which has always been a reliable way of buying clothing for me!

I really do love vintage, but one of the reasons I have always avoided buying it is because I rarely find anything my size. All of the dresses I like always have a 24 inch waist! I knew when I decided on getting a vintage wedding dress that I would have to just buy a larger size and go to a dress maker for alterations. This is exactly what I did, and our dress maker did a fantastic job not only taking the dress in and re-doing all of the boning, but also restored the damage to the lace and made the dress look good as new.

Instead of hiring a team of hair and makeup people, we did it all on our own with the help of online hair tutorials. Rather forcing the girls into sponge rollers and wet sets, my sister in law Lilli Rose who did everyone's hair, went for a simple contemporary hair style that still had an elegant vintage look, adorned with sprigs of babies breath. I was happy to do my own hair and makeup the way I would on any other day to ensure that I did not have to worry about having a bad hair day.

The Bridesmaids wore:
Retrospec'd dresses
Mel heels

The Flower Girl wore:
Chi Chi London dress
Vivienne Westwood Melissa flats

The Bride wore:
Vintage 1950s dress
Vintage veil
Vivienne Westwood Melissa heels
Vintage 1950s pearls

The Groom & Groomsmen:
Suits custom made by Studio Suits
Cuff links found on Ebay