Saturday, June 24, 2017

Got You Under My Heels

 I caved, and bought the shoes. It isn't every day you find squirrel shoes, you know!
It is difficult to see in the photos, but their bellies have a fuzzy fabric. The knit acorns are detachable. I wore them out today and heard quite a lot of, "Oh my god that lady has squirrels on her shoes!" One woman requested a photo. I have some nice shoes, but no one has ever asked for a photo of them. These were fun, and I was pleased to be able to spread a few smiles around town. They hurt like the dickens, but they looked great.
"Yeah, well they look like dinner as far as I'm concerned."
I knew such special shoes would require a nicer-than-typical dress. This wild 60's number was begging to be worn.

 The dress is a shiny, textured nylon material that was popular when I was a child. I bought the dress with the original tags from Goldblatt's on it. I had to laugh at that as I wouldn't have been caught dead near Goldblatt's when I was young (it was cheap and frequented by old people in search of a bargain). Today, being just that sort of person in search of a bargain, I wish Goldblatt's still existed. Oh well, I'm thrilled to pieces with the dress.

Outfit Particulars:
Vintage 60's Dress-Etsy seller Cloistered Muse
Necklace-Goodwill. My best guess is Ethiopian as I bought it in a set with a Lion of Judah pendant. Could be Jamaican by way of Ethiopia-or it could be something else entirely. Any experts have an opinion?
Irregular Choice Nibbles McNutty Shoes-Ashbury Skies
Vintage belt-Thrift World (the dress had the original gold belt, but I didn't like it)
Vintage straw bag-Yard sale
Fragrance-Vintage formulation Cabochard (that was the end of the bottle. Sob. I have so much perfume it seems crazy to replace a fragrance most people find offensively strong but...well, you know how I absolutely live to offend).
We had some wild cloud-to-cloud lightning the other night. The storm never materialised on the ground, but it was fascinating to watch up in the sky.
We have a new statue on the college campus. I don't know why they stuck it off in a corner of the parking lot no one sees, but in the process of assembling it they did away with the nice picnic bench beneath the tree. The statue sits atop a very steep hill overlooking a lower cement parking area. I give it a month before some drunken student climbs the statue and goes tumbling down 50 ft. It is a nursing college, so at least they shouldn't have trouble finding someone to administer first aid.
I'm laughing here because our postman just drove by, slowed nearly to a stop, leaned out the truck, and gave me a waving peace-sign as he went by. He's my age, so it was funny. Far out, maaaaaan.
 I hope you're having a lovely weekend.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Mexican Flowers

My Mexican shell flowers are blooming! I'm so excited, as this is the first year I've grown them, and didn't know what to expect. I've tried to stagger the blooms in my garden planting things that flower throughout the season-but that doesn't always go to plan with our unpredictable weather. These will be a welcome burst of colour as we wait for the gladiolas to bloom.
The wasps and bees are enjoying the garden as well. Danny tells me this is in fact not a wasp, but a robber fly. I learn all sorts of interesting things from that kid.
Speaking of beautiful florals from's the vintage hand-tooled leather bag I bought last week. The inside is lovely too...
In person it looks like pale, watercolour flowers. My camera isn't doing it justice. Sadly, the Armadillo bag arrived broken in pieces from poor packaging, but the seller issued a full refund so at least I wasn't stuck with a, "Busted Armadilla". On the positive side, I get to shout, "Busted Armadilla"  to amuse my son. Sure, other people look at us strange, but when don't they? Busted Armadilla! I'll get my bag, someday. 
Keeping with the floral theme, I gave this embroidered dress another wear. 
I can't decide how I feel about it. This will never be the first dress I reach for, but on beastly hot days when the thought of sleeves makes me break out in hives, I'm glad I own it. The top needs to be closed with a brooch unless I feel like letting it all hang out (which is fine, but not on a weekday morning when I'm headed out to do mundane chores) but that's clearly not a problem as anyone that's seen my brooch collection will know. I went with this replica of a Pre-Columbian nose-ring. I do like a good museum reproduction piece.

Outfit Particulars:
Embroidered dress-Goodwill
Brooch-Salvation Army store, Lincoln
Earrings-K Mart
Vintage Handbag-New Life Thrift
Flip-Flops-Hand- Me-Ups
Square bangles-K Mart
Other gold bangles-various thrift stores
Fragrance-Eau de Gaga (Nice! It has a dominant lime note that sticks around for hours. A little leathery, a little woody, this was five bucks well spent).

 I have a few more flowers to share. This skirt *almost* matched the bag. So close-gah. I wore it anyway, but I must admit, I wasn't happy once I got outside in the light. Still, I had people stopping me to compliment the skirt, so it couldn't have been as distracting as I thought. It is harder to match poppy prints than you'd suspect!
 At least the necklace and earrings were a good match. They look like raspberries, but are tiny beads. It is heavier than it looks.
Outfit Particulars:
Talbott's cotton skirt-Hand-Me-Ups
Top-K Mart
Ted Baker handbag-Goodwill
Necklace and earring set-Hand-Me-Ups
Cinnabar bangle-Hand-Me-Ups
Gucci shoes-Goodwill
Fragrance-Sophia Vergara Tempting

Also blooming in the garden at the moment-nasturtiums, violas, geraniums, salvia, calibrachoa, dianthus, and borage. The columbines are about ready to bloom, and my mums from spring are starting to bud again. I wasn't kidding when I said the weather was strange. The poppies died (boo) but everything else seems to be doing well. We've had plenty of honey bees, but not a single bumble bee this year. That's odd too.

I hope wherever you are, something is blooming, if only in a fab print or a tooled handbag. Oh, and one last thing...
                                                        BUSTED ARMADILLA!

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Autumn Colours in Spring

More awful news day after day. I find it interesting that for someone who's so quick to tweet (blurt) out whatever unfiltered rubbish courses through his head, the bully been maintaining complete radio silence the past few days. Interesting, eh? Well, no role model there I guess. I mean, come on-not even a completely hollow and meaningless, "Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims"? 

Okay, just had to get that out of my system. 

Here, have some cake.

On to nicer things. Happy Midsummer! We make this cake every year for Danny's half-Birthday which happens to fall at Midsummer eve. He spent the first nine years living in a very small town that was settled by Swedish immigrants that came to Nebraska as homesteaders in the 1800's. The real reason we save this cake for Midsummer is because you can't get raspberries in December! It is a very special cake that takes three days to complete, and as a result isn't the sort of thing I'd want to undertake baking more than once a year. What's in it you ask that takes three days? 
Homemade raspberry jam
Raspberry puree
Chocolate buttermilk cake
Raspberry chocolate ganache
And assembly that includes a wide variety of curse words!

In the end, we have enough cake for the next week and another half for the freezer. 

Let's move on to the real reason you come sparkling personality vintage clothing. 
Sigh, I like brown and rust colours. Always have. I imagine it is a matter of knowing what works for me, but it can look a bit out of place come spring and summer. That's where accessories become useful in stretching my favourite wardrobe pieces.
There isn't anything inherently summery about Western wear, but I do tend to associate it with the rodeo season which in Nebraska at least tends to be in the summertime. Confession-I like rodeos. The boys don't, but that's okay. I took Danny to a rodeo once and that was enough for him. 
I think Danny was about three when we took him to the Ashland rodeo (I can't remember when he stopped using a sippy cup). I couldn't bribe him to wear a cowboy hat and Western shirt these days. That's a pity as I find some really great stuff in the thrifts. All well, kids need to grow up and find their own interests. 
Anyway, accessories can drag an autumn skirt into summer as I've done with the addition of these open-toed sling-back heels. A hand-tooled leather bag always feels summery to me. I recently purchased one in dark green leather with a tan and rust rose motif in the centre. It would have worked with the colours of the skirt but I was afraid it would end up getting lost with the print of the fabric. "More is more" is a great rule of thumb, but shocking as it might sound hearing me say it, sometimes you've gotta hold back. I know, there there, the shock must be terrible. You should probably go have a lie down.
Outfit Particulars:
Blouse-K Mart a few years ago
1970's skirt-Thrift World
Vintage Belt-New Life Thrift
Vintage hand tooled Mexican purse-New Life Thrift
Vintage root beer Bakelite earrings-Can't remember
Fragrance-Fleur de Cabotine (cactus flower felt like the right note here)
How about another?
This nylon dress and matching jacket would be too flimsy to wear in our autumn weather, but the colours do suggest changing leaves. To help lighten this outfit up, I added a new-to-me Hobe  necklace and bracelet set. 

 I can appreciate why people collect Hobe-the pieces are substantial. My wrist was sore by the end of the day! Sort of like a fashionable wrist-weight.
 Outfit Particulars:
1970's nylon dress and jacket-Thrift World
Vintage Hobe necklace and bracelet-Thrift World (under three bucks. Really).
Vintage handbag-Thrift World
Brooch-Etsy shop, Nomads With Baggage
Vintage Gaymode shoes-Thrift World
 If you like the brooch, there's another still available in silver.

What about you? Do you save certain colours for specific seasons, or do you wear what you like when you like? 
Giddyup pardner.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Spiked Heels/Heels With Spikes

I wasn't going to buy these shoes. I was at Hand-Me-Ups with Danny when he noticed I kept picking them up, then putting them back. No longer able to stand my indecisiveness he grabbed them saying, "If you don't buy them, I will." I told him he's a bad influence on me, and he laughed in agreement. I've spent $5.99 on worse things.
This silver vintage bag cost $5.99 as well. I didn't require any persuading to make that purchase. It isn't any more practical than the shoes, but somehow it feels less extravagant. I love how it is flat like a briefcase while clearly not being a briefcase...unless you're some sort of  attorney with a wild sense of style.  It occurs to me that, Disco Solicitor would be one hell of a band name. Anyhoo, I couldn't leave it any more than Danny could let me leave the shoes.
 This dress has been worn on-blog before, but the jacket is a recent purchase. I removed the massive shoulder pads, and wore it slightly back from my shoulders to distract from how large it is. I don't remember waterfall style jackets being popular in the 80's, but this piece obviously proves my memory wrong. Peter Popovitch is becoming a sought-after vintage designer (God only knows why, the stuff is generally hideous) but this jacket spoke to me. Mostly it muttered, "What the hell?"
I have a few other Popovitch pieces and they are just as awful. At some point this summer I'll wear the nautical walking shorts with sailing flags and rope print. It is as awful as it sounds. But hey, Fashion!
Outfit Particulars:
Dress-rummage sale
Peter Popovitch jacket (80's/90's)-Goodwill
Guess shoes-Hand-Me-Ups
Vintage Necklace-Salvation Army store-Lincoln
Hair flowers-Tiff and Tam
Vintage handbag-New Life Thrift
We had some wild storms blow through Omaha last evening. 100+ mph winds that downed power lines and tore roofs off houses along with more water than we've seen in some time. 
 Hmm, that looks bad...

 ...but there was a rainbow at the end when it was over. Our neighbourhood was spared power outages and significant damage but other parts of the city weren't so lucky. The College World Series (baseball) is taking place this week in Omaha and we have visitors coming from across the country and the world. I can't imagine what they were thinking last night, but at least the series organisers had the sense to cancel the opening ceremonies once it was clear the storms were coming. A baseball park isn't the place to be in 100 mph winds. Anyway, I won't need to water the garden for some time.
 I'll leave you with some photos before a storm we had earlier in the week.
Stay dry, and have a great weekend.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

JLove by Jennifer Lopez-Fragrance Review

After Christmas, I purchased a bargain set of Jennifer Lopez fragrances for a few dollars at K Mart. I didn't expect much, but I've learned to keep an open mind. I'm glad I waited until the warm weather arrived to try out JLove, as I know it wouldn't have done much for me in December. With temperatures in the upper 90's, it seemed like an opportune time to try out this fruity, floral fragrance. First impression? 
Remember when, "Push-Up" didn't refer to a style of bra? 
So yeah, JLove's top notes remind me of fake orange ice cream on a stick. That's not a bad thing, as I have fond memories of reaching into the freezer case at the neighbourhood Rexall drugstore, grabbing one from the very bottom of the box (where they'd be coldest), handing over my .35 cents and racing over to the park to eat it on the bench next to the rocket ship jungle gym. They cost more than a Hershey Bar (.25 cents) but less than an ice cream Klondike Bar which was .45 cents. So overall, a good value...sort of like JLove. 

There's coconut and pineapple listed in the notes, but I don't detect either. That's strange as they're both notes with a tendency to overwhelm, It is almost a relief as I struggle to enjoy coconut in fragrances, and pineapple often turns unpleasant on my skin. But no such issues here-orange, vanilla, and a little muskiness later on to keep it from being too sweet. The only thing missing, keeping this from being the perfect childhood summer evoking fragrance is the smell of a heavily chlorinated pool, and cigarette smoke because everyone smoked everywhere when I was young, and the smell lingered all the more in the hot, humid climate of Chicago.

There's nothing sophisticated about JLove. It isn't remarkable in any way, it isn't innovative, and the bottle is cheap looking. That said, there isn't anything wrong with the fragrance either. It is light, sweet without being too sweet, perfectly appropriate for an office or public transport, and generally cheerful. I can't really ask much more from a three dollar bottle of perfume. The longevity isn't bad, considering the price, and you don't need to apply a giant cloud of it to get a good effect. The silage is moderate, but in a polite way. I wouldn't want to wear JLove regularly, but on a very hot day when almost everything seems like too much, it is a nice, refreshing scent that will make you crave orange sherbet. Not much to fault in that.

Notes according to Fragrantica:
Raspberry, pink grapefruit, pineapple, tangerine, orchid, water lily, coconut, vanilla, white wood, musk, tiare flower, and sorbet.

I like to think I have a rather skilled nose, but I don't get the raspberry either and the tangerine smells more orange to me. There is a sharpness to JLove, but it isn't the sort of simulated tartness you'd expect from tangerine, grapefruit or pineapple. I'm not certain where it is coming from, but it definitely leans more industrial chemical, than zesty fruit. Again, that's not as bad as it sounds.

Overall, I enjoyed JLove for the bright, summery fragrance that stops short of being fruit cocktail doused in condensed milk (as so many fruity, sweet fragrances are). Do I sound less than enthusiastic about JLove? I suppose that's a fair assessment but only because I have so many things I would rather wear instead. Absent the assortment of perfumes, I might reach for JLove more often for a nice burst of  fresh sweetness on a summer day, though probably not in the evening. This is a pre-sundown sort of scent.

Just a quick mention in passing-Jennifer Lopez Glow isn't a terrible fragrance for the money either, though the rose and tuberose fight it out with the amber for dominance. Not my kind of thing, but if you like sweet florals it is worth a try. Longevity is about half an hour, though what do you want for that price? They should have stuck the coconut and pineapple in Glo instead of JLove-that would have been a nice fragrance!

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Don't Be Chicken...Unless You're Headed to Wayne, NE.

 No one needs a rubber chicken purse, but I can at least attempt the argument as the Wayne Chicken Show is coming up.  Danny will be competing in the Cluck-Off for the second year (he took 3rd place last year) and I'm tempted to enter the, "Chicken Legs" competition. Anyway, I saw this bag and thought, "Gee, that would be great for the Chicken Show." As for the recently purchased vintage taxidermied armadillo purse I bought off, I haven't any excuse for that one. You know how it is, you see a taxidermied armadillo purse and think, "Ewww, why would anyone...?" and the next thing you know you hit the, "Buy it now" button.  We've all done that, right?

Here's an impossible-to-photograph skirt. It looks just as bright in person as it does in the photos. My first impulse was to wear it with my gold lame pleated-sleeve blouse-but I was afraid I might blind someone(it was sunny today). I find it challenging to dress-down a fancy skirt, but I thought the addition of a slouchy cotton blouse and leather sandals might work. This wasn't my first attempt-black, white, even a wine coloured top were all tried before I settled on the gold blouse. Most mornings I don't need to work this hard getting dressed. Still, in the end i liked the overall effect, and perhaps in the dead of winter I'll try it with the gold top, or a velvet tunic. The skirt is 3 sizes too large and hangs on my hips, but I like the casual look that gives it. 
Outfit Particulars:
Skirt-Goodwill (no tags to indicate age or origin)
Sandals-Can't remember
Belt-Retail, about 20 years ago
Earrings-Shop Ko about 15 years ago
Chicken purse-Hand-Me-Ups
Bracelet-Garage sale
Fragrance-Sofia Vergara Tempting 
If you will are local and plan to attend the Chicken Show, drop me an email and we can hang-out together. There's also a large flea market in town the same weekend that I'm told is worth going to. There are a few thrift stores in town along the parade route as well. Should be a good time. Now, to find an appropriate event for an armadillo purse...haven't been to Oklahoma in a few years...