• Carmella Polka Dot Mesh Swing Dress Review [Collectif]

    This darling of a dress was launched last year but was rereleased this Summer and I’m so glad it was! I totally missed out last year having thought – do I really need another evening dress?! Well, clearly the answer was a resounding YES! Always buy the dress haha. 

    It’s such a pretty design with two layers. The overlay is really delicate with a sheer fabric and velvet polka dots scattered over it. It’s fully detachable so you can wear it over other dresses too, which is a great feature.

    It has sweet little buttons (with elastic hoops for ease of closure) to the front and one at the neck where it fastens into a keyhole shape. There’s also a belt which goes through belt hoops on the outer layer too for a snatched waist. My belt was a bit long so I folded it over, but would do my usual trick of a Velcro dot when I’m out on the razzle dazzle!

    As the buttons stop at the waist, the overlay doesn’t meet at the front, so you always catch glimpses of the under dress, which looks really elegant and flattering as you move. The overlay is unfinished at the hem which I really like as you can see the mesh floating over the dress instead of being drawn to a heavy border.

    Underneath, the base of the dress is a strappy bengaline number with a sweetheart neckline. The straps adjust, which is brilliant as it can fit taller and shorter gals in one short tweak of the straps. I always size up once when I buy anything made from bengaline and I made the right choice with the larger size for this one. Aside from that, it’s a perfect fit and I really like the length which is cut on my mid calf as all good vintage dresses should be. I’m thrilled with it! It’s a full swing skirt so I’ll likely wear a petticoat underneath it for a more fancy pants look, but in the summer sun, I couldn’t handle a petti! 

    Squinty McSquinty in the Summer sun

    Just look at those gorgeous little sleeves and the shirt style collar! To die for. If you missed out on the Carmella Polka Dot dress too, or overlooked it by any chance, it’s reduced down in the sale to an amazing £27 from £90! The mid range sizes are all still available at the time of writing so I’d bag yourself this bargain (and size up once) – you won’t regret it!

    Now, off to a socially distanced, end of summer soirée!

     

    For reference: 
    I’m 4’11” and wearing 4 inch heels in the photos. I’m a standard size 6 in Collectif, but wearing a size 8 in this one which is the size of a 6.

    Also wearing:
    Earrings: Starlet Jewellery
    Hair Flower: High Street 
    Sunnies: Collectif old stock
    Shoes: Iron Fist old stock

  • Pinup picnic, for one [Collectif x Top Vintage Collaboration Caterina Review]

    This year we’ve been treated to another gorgeous collaboration between Top Vintage and Collectif Clothing (you can view the full Collectif Loves Top Vintage range here). There are some very cute circus prints as well as a very fabulous harlequin (which I am eyeing up but I don’t suit pale colours so I’m hoping it’ll return in a bolder colour, fingers crossed!).  Also included in the collection is this sweet little Caterina.

    The Caterina is a very popular style (you know I already have quite a few!), but this one is super special because she’s sleeveless! It’s the stuff of dreams – a sleeveless pencil Caterina. No more trying to figure out how to bunch sleeves up under fitted cardigans just smooth, smooth, lines!

    No more bumpy sleeves!

    I find I’m being drawn more and more to red clothes again. They used to be my staple as a brunette, but since I became a redhead (almost a decade ago), I always avoid red clothes thinking they’ll clash too much. Well I’m truly over that now. Maybe current world events are encouraging me to stop getting hung up on the minutiae as they don’t matter. So, I’m embracing red, clash or no clash. It’s my favourite shade – that bright pop of lipstick red.

    The fabric is cotton with a little stretch but it has a linen look and is lovely and light to wear for Summer too. As a classic 50’s shirtwaister dress, it has sweet wooden buttons running down the front (to the hip line) and these feature on the front pockets too. It has a matching belt with holes as well which is a great addition and I found it true to size for me, if a little bit generous on the hips. I’ve found a couple of the pencils are similarly sized this year. I may run it in a fraction but it gives me room for Covid essential pudding eating, so I’m not all that fussed.

    Close up details of the beautiful neckline and buttons

    I paired it with mint, but it will go well with so many other colour combinations too, I just adore anything on the turquoise scale with red. I’m currently knitting something in these shades and hadn’t realised that when I look around my home and clothes, I tend to put them together A LOT! ha

    Stay safe and I hope you can enjoy a little pinup picnic of your own in your garden or even a floor picnic in your lounge while the sun is shining. We may not be able to get together, but we can carry on looking fabulous until we do! Have a great Easter, until next time cuties x

    The Collectif Loves Top Vintage Caterina is priced at £55.00 and is available in all sizes from 6-22 on the website.  

    For Reference:

    Also Wearing:
    Cardigan: Collectif Lucy Strawberry Cardigan from a previous season (but Abigail would go so well too).
    Sunglasses, Bags and Necklace: All Collectif
    Bangles: Some vintage, mostly Bow & Crossbones
    Peep Toe Shoes: New Look (many moons ago)
    Brooch: Made by me
    Everything else – vintage/ retro bits and bobs from my house

    Stats:
    I’m a standard size 6 in Collectif clothes and I’m wearing 4 inch heels in the photos. The dress sits on my mid calf which is a perfect cut for a vintage look. You can cinch in the waist with the belt for a classic 50’s silhouette.

  • Miss Bella’s Blooms Review

    I must start by saying I already own one of Miss Bella’s Blooms and wear it quite often (it’s the large yellow hydrangea you will see in my pics a lot). So I already knew these hair flowers are amazing quality and beautifully made with so much work gone into them.

    I was lucky enough to receive a wonderful package of pretties in the post and to my utter delight, I have now radically upp’ed my hair flower game!

    Beautifully packaged and free pins!

    I received 4 stunning, custom made, pieces in different shapes and styles which suit me perfectly and go with so many of my outfits, I can’t wait to wear them all just as often as my yellow piece.

    First off is this pretty yellow and green Ranunculus & Alstromeria hair flower which I wore on my last outfit post (here).

    It’s bright and cheery but subtle at the same time and with a mix of colours, I can wear it with so many different outfits. There’s also a splash or orange/red too which ties in well with my hair,  especially as I love to accessorise with red, but all red would have been too much. It measures 7″x 5″ and is perfect to add some vintage glam to every outfit.

    On to the next piece which is a dazzling blue Hydrangea and Tweedia hair flower. This is just amazing and I think it’s my favourite piece of all (also because I’m just such a sucker for hydrangeas, my heart swoons when I see them).

    The blue is so vivid and the clip measures 10″x 4″ making it lovely and long to wrap around the head.

    Luckily, Miss Bella’s Bloom’s thinks of everything and some branded pins were included for me to place the top end of the hair piece down where I wanted it.

    I adore orchids (they were my wedding flowers) and so the last two made me leap with glee! This Green Orchid Hair Flower clip is 5,5″x 2.5″ and features clusters of pale yellow and white hydrangeas (dreamy combination for me!) and white cherry blossoms too.

    It’s a really delicate piece and perfect on its own or with extra flowers added too.

    The final piece was this gorgeously bright and fun Lucina Tropical Orange Orchid clip which is just utterly fabulous with all it’s tiki vibes!

    It measures 4.5″ x 4.5″ and as well as the orange orchid, there are also orange and yellow Alstromeria on green leaves which add interest all the way around – so from whatever angle you’re seen, you’ll be blooming gorgeous!

    They are priced so reasonably for the amount of workmanship that has gone into making these. The orange one above is only £7.50 and the green orchid cluster is just £10.90. You could also contact the very lovely owner, Claire, and commission something if you have a preference for particular flowers.

    The work that goes into these is fantastic and not only do you get beautiful hair flowers, but they also double up as corsages! So you can wear the most beautiful floral brooch on your vintage styled outfits. Look at the handiwork on these with options for hair or corsage on each piece:

    Even the back is beautiful, and look! it’s also a brooch!

    I hope you’ve enjoyed seeing my new collection and no doubt you’ll see plenty more as I just love a hair flower to finish off a vintage look!

     

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    Disclaimer: These were gifted to me by Miss Bella’s Blooms and I have chosen to write an honest review (I wasn’t asked) in support of such a fabulous, independent, business (please buy more from small businesses if you can). I will continue to buy from this company as I had previously (in fact, I made an order today!).