Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Fragrances For Heat and Humidity-Bargain Edition

Generally, I ignore all the blather about seasonal fragrances and wear what I like, when I like. Some summers however, are made for exceptions and this appears to be one. The idea of wearing anything even remotely spicy in this weather makes me gag, as does anything too heavy on the tuberose.

I once heard summer in the midwest summarised as: There's one seat left on the bus beside you, and the sweaty man without a shirt takes it. And the window won't open.

Which is pretty accurate, but I'd add: And a group of tween girls doused in CK One and numerous hair products get on the bus and sit opposite you. And the window still won't open.

Ideally then, you want something that will serve not only as olfactory protection against the sweaty man and Aqua Netted tweens, but will not inflict suffering on others. Naturally, I have some thoughts about this.

Yardley Lily of the Valley
It seems every morning since around March I've started my post-shower day with a liberal dousing of Yardley Lily of the Valley talc. The large canister is still better than half full, and at five dollars it was the scented bargain of the season. Sure, I have the lavender and April Violets talc as well, but when the dew point is over 70 degrees F. and the humidity is lingering around 80%, violets and lavender are going to smell too sweet. Where Lily of the Valley can at times waver between air freshener and antiseptic, the hot, humid weather brings out the deeper floral aspects that can be missed in cool weather. I can't say enough nice things about Yardley Lily of the Valley, and the fragrance is also an excellent value. As a bonus-it is a difficult (though not impossible) scent to over-do.

Coty Muget des Bois
A classic lily of the valley fragrance that is easily found on the web for very little money. It isn't terribly long lasting, but is cheap enough that you can keep refreshing through the day. I like the rose note here as it isn't overpowering and works well with a pleasant blast of citrus at the top.The sandalwood and musk base are nearly impossible to detect, though they are listed. I consider that skilled perfumery as it lends some depth without overpowering the bright lily of the valley. I still love most of the Coty fragrances (we won't talk about my Emeraude stash) even if they are starting to show their age. I hope they don't stop making this one. Stockpile at your discretion.

Oscar de la Renta-Live in Love
Another inexpensive gem that would seem somewhat uninteresting in winter but really blows me away in the warmer weather. Lily of the valley again, but here blended with hyacinth, rose, bergamot, cedar, sandalwood, and musk. It sounds heavy on paper, but is as fresh and refreshing as frozen lemonade on an August day. The cedar note is very well done, and avoids smelling like moth repellent. I should note however, that there is just the teeny, tiniest, aspect to Live in Love that reminds me of Deep Woods Off mosquito spray. That's not a bad thing (I rather like it) particularly if you have good associations with it of summer camp. Personally, I hated camp-but I still like the smell of Deep Woods Off. The lily of the valley, galbanum, and rose do a swell job of keeping it more perfume than bug spray. Marketed to women, Live in Love is clearly unisex. I bought mine at Marshalls for about ten dollars.

4711 Maurer and Wirtz
Cedar, basil, oakmoss, citrus-the classic summer fragrance for over 150 years. You can't go wrong with this one. Cheap, easy to find, attractive bottle loaded with nostalgia, it ticks all the boxes of what an inexpensive summer fragrance should be. It does not last more than an hour, so you'll need to reapply-but that's the idea of 4711. It is intended as a sort of pick-me-up. I think of it as a less expensive alternative to Guerlain Imperiale, and even Cedrat. You get that bright, light enjoyable fragrance without the price tag. I have nice memories of going to Kuhns delicatessen with my dad to buy Christmas presents for his customers (mostly booze because you can't go wrong with a bottle of Asbach at Christmas) and the old ladies that worked there sending me home with enough samples of 4711 to last until next Christmas. And licorice pipes that I didn't have to share with my sister because she didn't come along for the ride to Lincoln Ave ( She didn't get poppy seed strudel from Dinkels bakery a few doors down from the deli either, but we never mentioned the strudel as it was gone long before we got home). I can't smell 4711 without thinking candy and strudel as the association is so strong. Anyway, 4711 is a perfect summer bargain. I think I know what I'm baking tomorrow.

Gres Cabotine Rose
Unlike regular green Cabotine the rose flanker is a nice surprise. I'm listing it here as inexpensive as the EDT is often available at discounters for under $20.00. The rose name is misleading as it smells more of cherry blossom than rose, but it is blended nicely with notes of pepper, pear and vetiver creating a fragrance that is anything but rose scented. Interestingly, this isn't a sweet perfume at all, and it barely projects any sort of warmth. To my nose, it is quite fresh without smelling of household cleaner. As a bonus, you get an attractive bottle with a flower shaped cap.

Elizabeth Taylor Violet Eyes
Violet eyes smells exactly like Eclat de Arpege-at half the price. In fact, I prefer it to Eclat de Arpege as it lacks the sharp green note that reminds me of Glade solid from the 70's. The bottle is nicer than the stupidly designed Arpege that threatens to slip from my hands and crash to the tray each time I lift it up. Violet Eyes has a well done peach note that lacks that rotting dead animal aspect it can sometimes get. Peony is such a lovely note and I'm happy to see it used here to great effect. I paid about seven dollars for my bottle at Marshalls, and am quite happy with it. The warm weather seems to help with the longevity as well. I get several hours from a small spray on my wrist. Put on your best caftan, a few sparkly baubles and indulge your inner-Liz (you know you have one).

Fragrances of Ireland Innisfree
I'm listing this as a warm weather fragrance, though it does nicely in all seasons. The perfume has undergone reformulation since the 80's when I wore it regularly, but they've managed to keep the scent pretty much the same. I believe it had some oakmoss at one time (it does not now) and my older bottle does seem closer to a chypre than a fougere, but let's not quibble-this is a terrific fragrance for very little money. The longevity is incredible, and the silage is...all the way to Ireland and beyond.  Yes, it is strong, and yes it is vibrant-but it won't sting your eyeballs, and at most people will want to know what smells so good. You will smell good. Iris, apricot, cedar, lavender, lily of the valley-the sort of perfume that is *almost* universally loved. It will send my son running from the room, but everyone else in my immediate circle loves it. There's always one fougere hater in a family.

Fragrances of Ireland Connemara
Years ago, when I first encountered this one I thought it dull compared to Innisfree. How wrong I was. Connemara has all the bright notes of Innisfree with a good dose of rose mixed in. Carnation and orris root give it that spicy/fresh smell with that nearly impossible to describe "cold" clay smell of orris root. There's quite a bit of violet here, and for some people that would put Connemara firmly in the powdery/old fashioned category. On paper, that's true but in person what you get is a floral with a nice green base that has decent longevity for such an bargain perfume. Ever try that C Howards violet candy and gum designed to disguise cigarette smoke on your breath? It is a bit like that. By the way, for the youngsters reading-you shouldn't smoke, and your mother will know you've been smoking no matter what you do, so spare yourself the C Howards mints and Sen Sen. Don't smoke kids.

Jean Nate-The splash is great, but the body lotion is incredible. For the money, you get a wonderful body lotion that not only smells nice but does something. Sure, it is so cheap they practically give the stuff away, but it is bright, light, and inoffensive which is the sort of thing you want on hot, muggy days. I have the splash in a spray bottle which makes it convenient to blast the back of my neck and shoulders when I'm feeling miserable by midday. There's a bit of vanilla-just enough to make it smell like like lemon sorbet and vanilla ice cream which is the best antidote to summer heat I know of.

Revlon Charlie (Original)
To be fair, you can wear Charlie year round but as I first discovered it in the summer, and it is so forever etched in my 70's mind, I had to mention it here. Oakmoss, aldehydes, gardenia, and hyacinth read like an olfactory yearbook of 1977. Again, lily of the valley makes an appearance with some sandalwood and the result is an extremely well-made bargain fragrance that for someone like me never quite went out of fashion.  Put on your best white flares, get in the Dodge Dart, and load up the 8-track player with the new offering from Slade (your sister will bitch about it and want to listen to a James Taylor 8- track, but ignore her). Spray the car and yourself liberally with Charlie and go hang out at Belmont Harbor in Chicago. Your sister will want to go to North Ave. Beach, but ignore her. Spray more Charlie, and enjoy reliving your youth without all the angst and acne.

Payot Pavlova
In the last few years of my mother's life she took a liking to Pavlova. At the time, it seemed strange that someone with a perfume tray overflowing with expensive, glorious perfumes would prefer wearing this cheap drugstore scent in the crappy looking bottle. There's a dead swan on the cap-ya know, because...Pavlova the ballerina, and Swan Lake. I hate that ballet, and frankly I don't want any bird much less a dead one on the cap of my perfume bottles. What's wrong with a fancy dessert of fruit and meringues as an homage to a ballerina? Huh? Well? No, they have to go all dead swan on the perfume bottle. Geez.  To my nose it smelled floral without any real direction-a perfume that didn't know what it wanted to be when it grew up. Twenty five years later, I have a better understanding of what makes a fragrance wearable, and I'm less swayed by fancy bottles and esteemed names. Raspberry, lemon, and orange at the top makes the initial impression of Pavlova seem too weak. After a bit though, the florals come through with *just enough* tuberose and hyacinth to keep it from being too heavy in the summer heat. In fact, this fragrance almost seems made for humidity. The vetiver and oakmoss base do quite a bit to keep the florals fresh smelling, and though my mother would have been layering it over Coast soap (vile, I know but she could not be swayed. Once it was introduced in the 70's that was it) and Breck shampoo and creme rinse (that's conditioner in the 70's). Somehow, it all sort of worked on her, but you can still make use of Pavlova without resorting to Coast soap. The longevity is crap with this one, but again it is so cheap, who cares?

Vera Wang Periwinkle and Iris
I can't believe I like this one as it is so far from my typical sort of scent, but I do. It is super-cheap (they sell it at K Mart) and it won't last very long on your skin (it is a bit better on clothes) but if you're looking for something light that will cut through all the bad odours summer has to offer (everything smells like fungus and rotting garbage where I'm at) this is your bargain fragrance. Periwinkle, iris, and violet might sound a bit old fashioned, but there's so much vanilla and benzoin in it you could practically eat this one like candy. Normally, I shy away from that in a fragrance but here it just seems to work so well without smelling childish. Vanilla doesn't sound obvious for warm weather, and I can't guarantee you won't have every honeybee in a five mile radius approaching to see if you're dinner, but wear this out on a humid evening in late summer and you'll seduce the fireflies and anyone else around. I do understand that this sort of fragrance is objectionable to many people (typically I'd be one of them) so I urge you to try before you buy. My K Mart had a display of testers with other scents in the Vera Wang line. Be warned though-the green tea and pear blossom one is disgusting. I have a hard time imagining anyone liking that. Maybe a fruit fly.

Honorable Mention: Guerlain Terracotta
It isn't exactly cheap, but the edt is available online in the $30-$40 range which won't break the bank. You could save a few dollars and just slather on some Coppertone suntan lotion, but the Terracotta is a bit more nuanced. I didn't care for it back when it was released, but Danny likes it and I admit it is starting to grow on me.

Well? What about you? Have any inexpensive scents for the dog days of summer to recommend?

Sunday, July 26, 2015

National Get Your Geriatric Tits Out Day-2015

Fine, it isn't an official holiday, and I'm the only person celebrating but this is the inaugural year, and you know how lazy people are about participation. Someone had to go bra-less in this heat, and it might as well be me. I made up for it with stockings and a slip-happy now?
Knowing that this weather is with us for a bit, we took Danny to the comic book store to stock-up on reading. Poor kid hasn't been to the pool but a handful of times, and bike riding is out of the question in this bad air with asthma. Sure, we've watched movies, and read books but when you see your summer break slipping away day after blisteringly hot/humid day, someone has to intervene and make the summer a bit more enjoyable. We have a terrific comic book store near us, so thank goodness for that.

The necklace and earring set I'm wearing today was a Mother's Day gift from Danny several years ago. On most of my clothing it disappears, but I finally found the perfect dress for it. The child has excellent taste.

My local K Mart was having a sale this weekend on shoes. Already clearenced shoes were buy one, get one so these ended up costing four dollars. I bought a second pair in a similar style. They'd look better without the nana tights, I know.
Outfit Particulars:

Shoes-K Mart
Necklace and earrings set-Gift From Danny
Fragrance-Jovan, Woman

 The world's easiest up-do for a hot day, courtesy of a giant comb.  I like the back closure on the dress, though the strange crease across it is annoying. It won't wash or steam out, so my guess is it was a problem with the design.

 Thus concludes the first annual National Get Your Geriatric Tits Out Day, soon to be followed by National, "Put Those Away Granny" Day.

No caftan this week due to heat. Stay cool/warm wherever you are, and have a great week.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Vintage Cabochard de Gres-Review

I don't know about, "Cultivating a winner", but I certainly have a soft spot for Cabochard. I'd find it difficult to wear in public these days, but I happily spray it on before bed. This really is a perfume that takes a bit of time to develop, and if you can avoid the urge to scrub it from your skin after the initial cloud of aldehydes, asafoetida, and lemon it does (eventually) turn into a lovely fragrance. Like many good things, it does require a bit of waiting.

Having recently reviewed Bandit, I thought it appropriate to say a few things about Cabochard as they're often mentioned in the same breath. I'm not sure that's a fair comparison, though they do share a leathery/smoky sort of base. If anything, it reminds me of Aramis (which I just learned makes sense as it was the same perfumer Bernard Chant. He was also responsible for Estee, but I guess we can forgive him that. You can't always hit it out of the ballpark. Thanks, Google!).

Oakmoss, leather, and tobacco aren't for everyone. Twenty years ago I would have insisted they're not for me, I would have protested at such extravagant use of oakmoss. I was wrong. Wrong, wrong, wrong. Perhaps it is a case of absence making the heart grow fonder as oakmoss has been regulated out of modern perfumes, or my nose has matured-either way I am now thoroughly converted just in time to see the stuff's use discontinued. I haven't smelled the new Cabochard, and I'm not sure I wish to.

Cabochard is categorised as a "green" perfume, which I suppose it is given the amount of vetiver, tarragon, and sage in it-but the warmth of sandalwood and patchouli combined with the cold orris root and geranium keeps it from smelling like a freshly mowed lawn sprayed with Lysol disinfectant. Cabochard isn't that sort of green (though Cabotine definitely IS). Most reviews put the leather and tobacco as dominant notes, and they're there-but to my nose the dominant note is oakmoss. And then, a bit of musk, oakmoss, and some more oakmoss. Oh hey, how about some oakmoss? Yeah? Well here 'ya go! So yeah, there's a whole hell of a lot of oakmoss in Cabochard. Although described as a feminine perfume I don't see any reason why a man couldn't or shouldn't wear Cabochard. In fact, to modern American perfume sensibilities, Cabochard seems more appropriate on a man. The only "feminine" thing I can find in Cabochard is the vague fruit/coconut notes that tend to appear and fade quickly in about the amount of time it takes to wonder what it was. It has always been my opinion that rose and lemon work better on men anyway.

I'm rather certain the thrift stores I frequent will never present me with a Madame Gres gown, but bottles of vintage formulation Cabochard do frequently turn up.
(That gown? In my thrift stores? Not going to happen).

Cabochard seems like a fragrance that was both behind and ahead of its time. The strong leather chypre fragrances of the 30's and 40's would have made Cabochard seem old fashioned by 1959. What it anticipates (without knowing it) is the unisex fragrance trend that began in earnest with the musks and herbal scents of the 60's. The "big" 80's fragrances owe something to Cabochard as well with the gigantic blast of aldehydes. I won't claim Cabochard is the embodiment of 20th century perfumery, but if you pay attention, nearly all the good points are represented.

I do think, in 2015 United States office culture, Cabochard would be a no-go. Lightly applied perhaps an hour before arriving at work you *might* be able to pull it off, but I could see it being headache inducing even to a perfume lover with all that oakmoss. Chypres need space to roam free like the waves crashing the rocks of a Greek island, which if any of the places I worked in the last 30 years were typical, that does not describe the cubicle hell of modern offices. I only recall one office with an open floor-plan rather like a newsroom, and I still wouldn't have worn Cabochard there. If memory serves, I was deep in love with Innisfree by Fragrances of Ireland at that time, not exactly a quiet scent! But not Cabochard, that would have been too much. Still, you know your office culture better than I, so use your judgement. Cabochard does make a wonderful evening fragrance.

Has anyone tried the most recent reformulation of Cabochard? Please share your impressions.

She Likes Rainbow

You thought I'd go for, "She's Like a Rainbow", didn't you? I never really liked the Stones all that much, and that song in particular always irritated me. Now, Rainbow I liked! A lot.  
Here's a good use of ten minutes if you have it. There's things worth making time for.
So back to the rainbow of my wardrobe. I was stumped for how to accessorise this dress. I knew it needed red because I've learned that from Sue. No one does red, black, and white the way Sue does. I was trying to think if purple or blue would work too, when I decided to check my collection of bangles to see if I could pull off a rainbow. Turns out, I could do both arms. Exciting, I know.
Yesterday was our hottest day in several years with the heat index hitting 118 F. Madness. That's about 45 C. Today was a bit cooler, but we're back under the heat warnings again tomorrow. I stocked-up on tinned salmon and crispbreads-I see many cold meals in our future because there's no way I'm cooking in this.

It is so humid outside, the camera (and my specs) steamed over! Eventually they adjusted to the outside air. I wore a new-to-me fragrance today-Ambre et Diamant Noir Ambergris. It is extraordinary. Worth the money? Oh yes (yes, yes, yes!). There's a great wallop of ambergris along with civet, castoreum, iris, rose and some vanilla. It sounds like a damn zoo on paper, I know but the end result is one of the best fragrances I've ever worn. I splurged on a larger-than-typical decant and I'm so glad I did. I'll do a proper review eventually, I promise. If you like animalic musks, this might be for you. Mr. ETB wanted me to douse the bedroom in it so he could read Moby Dick before bed. Obviously, I refused. Besides, the scene where they're harvesting the ambergris from a whale wouldn't smell nice as it needs to be aged before it is suitable for perfumery. I did offer to shit the bed (on his side, of course) as a close approximation of what fresh ambergris would smell like, but he declined.

Outfit Particulars:
Cotton Dress-Nearly New Shop
Vintage bangles-all over
Rings-Hobby Lobby/Thrifted
Earrings-Big Lots
Cherries brooch-Thrift World
Shoes-K Mart
Vintage handbag-Goodwill
Fragrace-Ambre et Diamant Noir

 "You did What to my side of the bed?!"
That's the face I get when I ask him to smile for a nice photo. Sigh.

I hope everyone is having a nice weekend.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

She Sells Sea Shells By the Platte River?!

 Landlocked as I am in the centre of the US, I'll take any coastal reference I can get. I miss the ocean.
The skirt is hand-sewn and there's an exact skirt in a different print that were both donated to the thrift store together. I bought both, not because the sewing is good (it isn't) but because the fabrics were so great. This one is a heavy rayon-almost like the cold rayon you find in 40's dresses, and it is lined in an equal quality material. That's so rare that I can forgive unfinished seams and shaky sewing (I wonder if it was a student project?).

 I resisted the urge to wear every shell accessory I own (and there are many) favouring quality over quantity. These tiny painted shells on my clip earrings are so cheerful. I can't, "Hear" the sea in them, of course.
This wooden and shell belt I bought some time ago figuring there would be something in my wardrobe to go with it. Today that finally happened which made me feel better about that $1.99 I forked over for it. All those tiny shells being strung onto a belt must have been maddening work for the crafts person making it. It was marked, Indonesia, and my guess is it was a tourist item. The belt is very well made.
Speaking of tropical, the gardenia finally decided to bloom. It was rather late this year. It isn't helped by the sparrows that like to sit in the branches and kick off the buds before they have a chance to flower. They must assume that a pretty little tree next to a parking lot is for their benefit-why else would you put a tree there if not for sparrows to sit in?
I thought this ring could be the ocean.

Outfit Particulars:
Peasant blouse-K Mart
Wood and shell belt-Hand-Me-Ups
Ring-Hobby Lobby
Earrings-New Life Thrift
Both Necklaces-Thrift World
Fragrance-Oleg Cassini for Women (though I should have worn CB I Hate Perfume, Mr. Hulout's Holiday, which is a nice aquatic, and I have it. Oh well, next time).

I stopped at the Church consignment boutique today to check it out. If I were looking for nice clothes to wear to work, or a party it would be great, if a little pricier than I'm used to with thrift stores. They've lost their minds on the pricing of vintage though, and most of it looked like you'd need some sort of immunization after handling them. Probably not a place I would shop regularly, but it was in the neighbourhood, and I found a nicer-than-typical dress for $12.00

The *real* shopping excitement came at the Friends of the Library Book Sale today. I've been ill all week, and really didn't feel up to going, but I'm glad I did. They had a cart of old VHS tapes for .25 cents. I spotted, Clash of the Titans and complained to Danny that they never have Jason and the Argonauts, which I've spent years searching for. Before the words were fully out my mouth-there it was! A moment later, I spotted all three Sinbad movies! I wasn't jumping up and down or anything (I'm still too weak for that) but I was so overjoyed and happy I think it might have frightened the volunteers. They're used to a more sedate version of my personality. We came right home and watched Jason and the Argonauts. I was surprised Danny remembered so much of it from the first time he saw it (he was about four and there were still video stores to rent from). So anyway, another "Sea" reference.

I remember seeing Jason and the Argonauts when it made a return to the theatres about a few years after it was released. They'd been hyping it, and I'd seen the clips and posters and really wanted to see it. It wasn't my mum's sort of movie, and my sister couldn't be bothered so finally my dad took a rare Saturday off from work and took me to see it. I want to say it was the Pickwick theatre, but after so many years I can't be certain. I remember it being a somewhat older theatre, and that it wasn't terribly full even for a Saturday matinee.
Here's a clip of the skeleton fight. Only after looking around YouTube did I notice the full movie is available. Still, it was fun to sit and watch it with Danny on a television screen. I would love to see it in a theatre again. They did give the myth a Hollywood ending however, so if you'd like a less Hollywood version of Medea's story, The Passolini version is also available on YouTube. I loved that movie so damn much, but not the sort of thing to watch with a ten year old.
I wonder if I wore something in an African print if I'd find a copy of The African Queen at the sale next week? I still need to watch that one with Danny before the summer is over.

I'm sure this weekend won't be nearly as exciting as last, what with the Gilligan's Island party and all...

But that's no reason to pack away the coconut cups and palm tree! 
I didn't read the dimensions on the palm tree carefully, and I had a bit of a Spinal Tap/Stonehenge moment when I saw how small it was. 

I hope you have a great weekend. 

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Caftan Sunday Returns

What are you gawking at? Never seen a woman in a velour caftan on a 90 degree day? Go get me a cocktail. With ice.

This is not a summer caftan. Five minutes after taking the photos I raced inside to get out of the velour. I can see wearing it to entertain at Christmastime, but definitely not in July.

 Outfit Particulars:
Neiman Marcus caftan (80's I'd guess) Hand-Me-Ups
Jack Rogers vintage cork-heeled slides-Goodwill
Costume necklace-Hand-Me-Ups
Earrings-Target, some time ago
Gold bangle-can't remember
Ruby waterfall ring-Mum's

I cannot feel anything but glam in these slides. The previous owner put shoe savers on them-I would have too. They were pristine when I found them. 

And in other news, I found the tooled handbag of my dreams at New Life Thrift.

 I don't know who AMT was, but she kept her purse in nice shape.
 I might have squealed with joy (a bit) when I spotted it in a display bin overflowing with old rucksacks and shoppers. As I always insist, whatever you desire (within reason) eventually turns up at the thrift store for a reasonable price. I found a similar bag on Etsy for $175. Madness.

 Outfit Particulars:
Vintage Carefree Fashions of Scottsdale AZ. skirt-Thrift World
Vintage Mexican hand-tooled leather purse-New Life Thrift
Bamboo bangles-Hand-Me-Ups
Shoes-K Mart
Blouse-K Mart
Hair Flowers-Tiff and Tam
Hand-woven belt-Goodwill
Fragrance-Chantilly (still as horrible as I remember it, but sometimes I need to remind myself)
Gigantic ring-Hobby Lobby

I'm off to host my Gilligan's Island Tiki Party. I made vegetarian sweet and sour meatballs, which I hope will go over well. I stopped at the party store for a table-top palm tree, and "coconut" glasses for punch. With any luck I'll be busy enough to escape actually watching the marathon viewing.

See you soon.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Fetch My Owl, We're Headed to Olympus

Fine, Omaha, not Olympus. Same difference.  Chilly Willy is keeping watch in the garden, and cheering-up passersby. 
We've been known to do this sort of thing before in a heatwave...
Someone has to maintain a sense of humour around here-might as well be us. Man, I do NOT miss keeping that lawn maintained in the heat. I think Danny was about 6 in that photo.

 If you're headed off to Mt. Olympus for the weekend to listen to lyre music and eat ambrosia, you'll want to dress for it. The gods are very particular about accessories (can't go wrong with gold) so wear it if you have it!
 I took this photo in my chariot Ford Focus.
We headed out early before the heat warnings are in place (after 2 PM). True to my promise to wear as little clothing as possible, I selected this purple dress I bought a few years ago and am first getting around to wearing (purple is hard to wear). This seemed like a good time to wear the kind-of-Cycladic brooch as well.

Outfit Particulars:
Maggie London dress-Goodwill
Y&S Original purse-New Life Thrift
Kathy Van Zeeland shoes-Goodwill
Large bracelet-Claire's
Earrings-Free gift from an Etsy seller
Rings-all over
Liz Claiborne belt-Hand-Me-Ups
Lippy-Revlon Super Lustrous Fuchsia Fusion (which is identical to the old, Sea Fleur, if you've been missing it for the last 35 years)
Fragrance-Courreges in Blue (should have worn Kouros, I know).

The library has a community puzzle in the reading room for people to help complete. Some take longer than others to finish, but this one seems to be going along at a good clip. It isn't unusual to see young and old, and people from all walls of life sitting and working on the puzzle together.
 Have I mentioned how much we love our library? They had some sort of programme for very young children going on today with music and dancing-it sounded like fun!
 The library is an excellent place to ride out a heatwave.

 Behold, the boob-enlarging power of pleats! Yeah well, "The bigger the better" etc. Works on hips too, but there's only so much I can blame on pleats.
 I like this back detail quite a bit. The blousing of the material around the cutaway does lighten the feel of the dress and permit a breeze. I do wish the hem wasn't one of those high-low designs that make you feel like a mermaid dragging a tail as I had to consider how the outfit would look from both front and rear which made selecting shoes difficult. It also causes run-on sentences. High-low hems are bad for fashion, and grammar.

Look who fledged! Out of the nest, and swooping all over the neighbourhood. I keep refilling the water for the birds, but other than a few sparrows and finches I haven't seen many birds bathing and splashing about. The grackles like to drink from it though, so I suppose it is worth keeping refilled. I don't know why birds don't just head over to the pool? I know I would if I were a bird. Perhaps they don't like the chlorine.

Tomorrow, the Retro-TV channel is having a 3 hour (Tour) Gilligan's Island special complete with commentary from from, "Mary Ann." I somehow ended up in charge of a Gilligan's Island party complete with tropical drinks, costumes, and Polynesian style food ("Bring on the Pu-Pu Platter!"). Not that I need an occasion to break out my Tiki items, but this is as good a reason as any. Maybe they're finally gonna get off of that island...

 Have a great weekend, everyone!

Friday, July 17, 2015

An Excellent Fake

I removed my earlier post after being jittery that I might have a valuable piece of jewelry sitting at home. I took it to the local high-end jeweler that deals with estate items and I'm relieved to know it is very good quality costume. Had it been real, I would have returned it to the shop of course, but then that would complicate things for them getting appraisals, trying to find the person that donated it, selling it, etc. The gemstones are real, but of poor quality, and the setting is not gold. The markings are deliberately fraudulent, and the elaborate settings and design were likely made to be deceptive. I imagine a disappointed 1960's tourist returning to Omaha with an excellent fake, and a good story about being taken. Even the jeweler at the desk was taken by it! Only when the appraiser got hold of it did the truth come out. So that's that. Thanks to everyone for their insights about the piece. Now I can keep it, and wear it happily.
Feeling relieved about the necklace, I asked Danny if he felt like trying our thrifting mojo over at New Life Thrift. We rarely go there as it takes twenty minutes to drive over instead of ten minutes to our regular haunt. Danny is getting ready to open an online shop devoted to vintage scarves and ties as he's found so many good ones for a small investment. NLThrift is almost always great for scarves and they're .98 cents. For his efforts digging through the bins he found over 50 good quality scarves including several older Veras, tourist scarves from London, Las Vegas, and Amsterdam, and a slew of beautiful silk, hand rolled scarves with everything from florals to atomic prints. After a bit we started joking, "Ho hum, another Vera." before bursting out laughing. So that's Danny's online shop sorted, now he just needs to wash, press and photograph them all.
New Life Thrift has a good selection of vintage patterns for .10 cents, and this trip I was able to bring home a pattern for a, "Culotte Ensemble." Just typing that was exciting. I also found a pattern for a nightgown which is perfect as I recently found a beautifully made antique crochet inset for one. Now, I just need to locate some good quality cotton deserving of such a beautiful yoke. On our way to the shop we noticed a local church has a "Nearly New" shop operating Thursday through Saturday which I'm interested in checking out. The more I swear I'm not spending any more money, the more these places keep beckoning me in like sirens. "Come in Goody...come in...we have very nice polyester dresses". I feel like Odysseus (and sometimes when I get lost driving around South Omaha and it looks like I'll never find a familiar street again, I start to fear it might take a while to get home).

Outfit Particulars:
Fast fashion crappy dress via Goodwill- .99 cents (It really isn't worth .99 cents-I'm sure it will fall apart after a couple wears).
Vintage handbag-Goodwill
Vintage Naturalizer shoes-Thrift World
1950's bead earring clips-Hand-Me-Ups
Milkglass and MOP bracelet-Hand-Me-Ups
Black carved Bakelite pinky ring-Hand-Me-Ups
1950's (60's?) jet necklace-Hand-Me-Ups
Fragrance-L' Heure Bleue (vintage formulation)

We're under excessive heat warnings for the next few days as the heat and humidity are combining to reach dangerous heat indices. I think they were saying something outrageous like 112 degrees F. which is somewhere in the 40 degrees C. range, to give those outside the US an idea of what it means. Well, what it means is that I won't be leaving the house, we'll be sitting in the dark, and I won't be firing up the cooker! We had the same scenario last weekend, but we've had such a cool summer otherwise it would be foolish to complain. My tomato plants are pleased anyway.

Now, to figure out how to be fashionable in a heat wave. Maybe I'll just wear a swimsuit and a magnificent (albeit fake) ruby necklace.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Some Cute Recent Finds

 Just a very quick post of some vintage 70's mugs and a nice brooch all found at thrift stores this week.
 A meadowlark on a branch rather than a post (which is now the default pose for meadowlarks).
 A gigantic key brooch to open...I dunno.
1970's mugs-Hand-Me-Ups
1970's brooch-Goodwill

Whoo hoo, almost Friday!