It feels like the recent cold snap has definitely welcomed in Winter this week and here we are in December already! What to wear in Winter while keeping it vintage is always a bit of a conundrum, especially when you’re wanting to stay warm. I love layering during the colder seasons and it works so well when you have a great base like the Collectif Tave Top.
It’s a pretty simple top but all the drama comes from the neckline, with its nautical style ties to the front that drape down over the front. It’s such a great feature and you can easily wear 40s or 50s styles with it and a warm knit over the top to keep you cosy with that extra layer.
Made from 100% cotton, it’s super comfortable to wear and has three quarter length sleeves to keep you warm but show off your fabulous accessories too!
I wore it with the Alexa Valley Check pencil skirt from the Top Vintage collaboration last year, but there’s a very similar check in this season’s Collectif stock called the Alexa Giles if you’re looking to go for this style. It would also look fabulous under a sleeveless dress with just straps, with trousers and with a swing skirt. It’s very versatile and could be worn to work or out for drinks!
It’s a really lovely fit and I have my normal size which was perfect for me. There’s lots of stretch to the top too and it’s long enough in length to tuck into things.
The boring stuff, in case you need to know:
I’m a standard size 6 and wearing a Collectif size 6 in the photos above. My stats are 33:24:33 and I’m 4’11”.
As Summer is drawing to a close, I’m making full use of my sale buys and enjoying the last of the sunshine in this very sweet little dress, the Demmi Deckchair, part of the Bright & Beautiful range from Collectif.
It’s super lightweight and made from rayon which is perfect for warm days. I’ve previously spoken about its counterpart with the Astrid in this print, but this shorter version is really lovely too and great to have as a more casual option.
As well as the amazing bright stripes, this dress has a gorgeous, sweetheart, neckline and adjustable straps which are great to ensure a good fit for everyone. The top part is fitted and has pretty wooden buttons running down the centre to the waist. From there, the skirt billows out with darts finishing at hip height. I really like how full the skirt part feels along with the fitted bodice. There’s also an invisible side zip to get in and out which is super handy and discreet.
The fit is great for me. I love that it’s a mini dress version – which actually works as just a normal length dress for me! It’s a wonderful length for petites and sits just above my knee (which to be honest, doesn’t usually get seen much now!). It will obviously sit shorter for those of average height and taller. There’s no stretch in the fabric so if you’re busty, you may want to size up and also if your widest part is on the waist. I found it true to size for me and I’m really happy with how it fits.
As the Collectif sale is coming to an end, this dress is now out of stock on the main site, however, you can still pick it up in selected sizes for just £22 at SilkFred which includes free delivery too – bargain!
I’m a standard size 6 in Collectif Clothing and I’m wearing a size 6 in this Bright & Beautiful range. I’m 4’11” tall wearing 4 inch heels.
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!
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!
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.
Earrings: Starlet Jewellery
Hair Flower: High Street
Sunnies: Collectif old stock
Shoes: Iron Fist old stock
We’ve reached the end of another week – a miserable one here in the UK sadly with all the rain (but our gardens are thankful!). Better weather is on its way though and what better way to hold on to hopes of blue skies and endless sunshine than by adorning yourself with a taste of Spain (when I see sweet juicy oranges, I always think of Valencia).
I managed to purchase this one during the 50% off sale and my size happened to appear (it was meant to be!) so I snapped it up immediately. The Mirtilla style is new this season and what a fab little pencil she is! Emblazoned with oranges on a navy cotton sateen, she has a casual feel with the polo style top but still dressy with the tailored wiggle. I absolutely love this new design, especially the bespoke orange print, it’s just delicious.
The collar has a couple of buttons to the front and turn up sleeves on the arms. There is a side zip on this one which, to be honest, I found incredibly difficult to get on with a pencil style. They work much better for swing dresses and I do wish it had a centre back zip instead as I have to ruin my hair to get it on. I much prefer to step into dresses and I felt a bit like I needed to be double jointed to get into it with side zip haha. Once on though, it’s super comfortable to wear and it has just the right amount of stretch.
It falls on my mid calf which is just perfect for a good vintage length. I love that it’s more of a casual style but still in my beloved pencil shape. I really hope to see more of this design returning (but fingers crossed for a centre back zip). There are also swing versions of this design if you’re not a pencil lovin’ kinda gal, but not in the oranges print.
I paired mine with the orange Billie cinch belt and Natalie orange bead necklace from last year’s Collectif accessories, the parasol I picked up at a Collectif outlet sale event a couple of years ago, the Aaliyah orange orchid hair flower from earlier this season at Collectif, shoes from Lulu Hun (featured earlier on the blog, here) and bangles by Splendette and Bow & Crossbones which were a perfect match with this dress. I felt totally tropical! Bring back sunny days x
I’m 4’11 and wearing 4″ heels, I’m a standard size 6 in Collectif and no alterations have been made.
It’s been about a year since I first saw these jeans and started swooning over them. I’d followed the company for a good while before as they suit so many of my vintage lovin’ gals, especially the fabulous ‘Hug me Baby‘ style which makes all pear shaped beaut’s dreams come true!
But alas, being a bit vertically challenged, I rarely do well in trousers or jeans without alterations and they’re especially problematic if they’re high waisted as I just don’t have the extra torso space. So I almost fell off my chair when the awesome Lady K Loves designed the amazing Polly jeans – with a shorter rise and perfect for us petites!
If you’re not petite, but you prefer a mid or low rise jean, then this style would also be a great choice for you. I’m thrilled to finally own a pair of Polly’s in indigo which are now my wardrobe staple. I love the beautiful stitching with the sweetheart yoke on the back.
The fit is really good too. The rise is just where it should sit on my frame – instead of a few inches higher where other high waisted jeans normally sit on me (which is practically directly under my boobs – not a good look for anyone). They’re really comfortable, and I love the feel of the denim. Speaking of which, not only does LKL cater for all shapes and sizes with their range of jeans, they’re also very consious about ethical sourcing, fair trade, and providing a fabulous but sustainable, quality product. They’ve definitely hit the nail on the head with these jeans, and it feels great to support a company with such high ethical standards. You can read more about this process on their website (here).
The little details like the new label and iron on patch (which is definitely going to be added to my pair) are fab too:
With the leg length, I bought the 27″, but when measuring them, they’re actually 28″ so were always going to be too long on me anyway as I’m a teeny 4’11” as most of you know. I’ve rolled up twice but will likely just alter them so the roll ups sit better – nothing I wouldn’t normally do for jeans/trousers, though I think I can get away with them as they are, which never happens!
The ordering process was super easy and I emailed Boss Babe, Kessie, for sizing guidance prior to ordering (there’s a great size guide on the website but I needed a little extra help). She was so lovely and helpful and made the purchase a real pleasure. Based in Bristol, she’s still hard at work sending out happy parcels from her home office to us during these weird times, which I was really thankful for. These jeans have come at the perfect time for me as I want to incorporate a more casual look to my vintage style wardrobe. I normally wear dresses, so these have become a really cool alternative for my 50’s aesthetic when I don’t feel like putting on a frock. They ooze vintage style but with the modern fit, feel great and enable me to do whatever my little heart desires.
As well a range of jeans to suit all, LKL makes limited edition tops, skirts and accessories and offers a variety of ways to pay, including Clear Pay, so you can spread the payments if needed. There are also some cheeky sale bargains in the Last Chance section which has some great offers and is worth checking out – I picked up a cute yellow top from a previous sale and was so glad I snapped it up as it didn’t come back (it really was the last chance) – so if you see something you like, grab it! Enjoy x
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!
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.
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.
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
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.
Happy Friyay lovelies!
Hope you’ve all enjoyed a little splurge on the sales. Isn’t the January sale always AMAZING?! I confess, I do tend to buy throughout the seasons as and when things appear so by sale time, I’m thinking I’m pretty much done and don’t need anything. However, then I flick through the sale pages and realise I NEED IT ALL!
I’ve been pretty tame this year and just bought a few things. Some went back as the sizing wasn’t right for me (which is my own fault as I knew a different size wouldn’t fit me but one can dream) and these are the items I kept (there are a couple of others but they were duplicates of things I already have).
Firstly, the peter pan collar obsession continues with this beautiful Clemence Pencil Dress. This was one of my must haves when I saw it a trade show and I’d been patiently waiting for it to launch, which it did, shortly before Christmas. Having been a bit extravagant at Christmas, I waited for the sale and bought it at 50% off and my goodness am I so glad I managed to snag it! and for that price too!
The gorgeous meadow print is used on a couple of other seasonal styles. It has a large green, white and black check and the sweetest details, including covered black, velvet, buttons which run down the front and little black buttons on the sleeves. Yes, that’s right gals, I said SLEEVES! How fantastic is it to have a dress with sleeves during the winter months. I always feel the cold so I am over the moon as sometimes three quarter sleeves aren’t enough for me little chilly wrists.
There is also an optional ready made, adjustable, bow which can be worn or excluded. I really liked both options and will also be using the bow on my other dresses and blouses. Such a great feature!
Fit-wise, I found it a little roomy for me. It seems larger than some of my others, but you know, that’s just room for puddings. I also found it longer than other pencils I’ve had. They normally cut mid calf but this one sits on my lower calf. I may end up having it altered slightly to be a tiny bit shorter, but I was happy with the overall fit and look. I’m also removing the buttons on the skirt part as I prefer them just on the top half. Hopefully I won’t make any holes! I paired it with my black Lulu Hun Susan Heels and some Christmas decorations which were still up at the time I took the photos haha
Next is one I’d forgotten about until I happened to remember that some Modcloth items are included at sale time. The polka dot print on this Caterina is the same as those on the Jemima and Dolores dresses we’d had previously, but in a glorious navy instead.
The 50’s shirtwaister style is such a classic for a vintage lovin’ gal. I have a number of dresses in this style but this is definitely my new favourite. The polka dots against the navy are really lovely.
I tend to size down with Caterinas and I did with this Modcloth collaboration too and it fits perfectly. There’s a matching belt in the same fabric and pockets in the side seams. I also much prefer the buttons on this one which are metal with a little pattern around the edge. Caterina’s are so easy to wear wherever you’re going (or not going – just add a pinny over it at home for 50’s housewife chic!).
Lastly, this is a sale item I didn’t expect to be keeping as I thought it wouldn’t work for me, but I think it does! woohoo! The Dolores Palm Jumpsuit was from the last Summer collection and I didn’t take much notice of it as I don’t suit Dolores styles, and with the petite aspect, jumpsuits often don’t work with my shorter frame. But I threw caution to the wind (as you often do during sale time) and figured, what’s the worst that could happen? I end up with a saggy crotch? Ok, that sounds pretty bad, but luckily it didn’t turn out that way!
The top of the jumpsuit is a normal Dolores style with slim fit trousers. Genius! Firstly, this print has been amazing and I’ve picked up a few styles with this palm tree design. I’ve always loved the look of a Dolores on others, but for some reason, I can’t get my body to make it work. So the jumpsuit option made my little Dolores-wannabe heart sing! There’s a centre back zip and a pocket on your butt. It’s a comfortable fit with stretch in the fabric. She’s going to get worn a lot this Summer as you put it on and instantly launch SASS mode. I popped a wide red belt on to cinch in the waist and some white heels to fully embrace the sassiness.
Unfortunately the jumpsuit is no longer available, but fingers crossed for a return this year in a different print (or check the Collectif buy/sell group for this version). The Clemence dress is in the sale, along with the full swing version too. I recommend snapping these up! The Modcloth Caterina isn’t in the sale section so I was lucky to get that with the 50% off code, but it will no doubt enter the sale at some point so keep your eyes peeled.
Having all shopped til we drop, I’ve been patiently awaiting the launch of the Spring/Summer 2020 collection and was delighted to see the new additions to the site this week (although strangely they’re not in the New In section, you have to look for them by category). I’ve bought a few items which I’ll share next time with you (I know it’s still winter, but I’m already wishing it was Spring). Some of them will crossover with a cardi and tights added for winter so I can get double the wear! In the meantime, enjoy your sale items and look out for further reductions x
I’m a standard size 6 in Collectif and 4’11” usually wearing 4 inch heels in the photos above.
Bangles: Bow & Crossbones
Necklace: Charity shop find
Shoes: Lulu Hun and Everything5pounds
Silly Doggo spying in one of the pics: Model’s own
I don’t shop on the High Street much, but I was browsing (monstera covered) homewares when I happened upon the petite collection at Matalan (which had launched five years ago apparently!). The range is limited, as with most petite collections, but there’s enough to provide a petite gal with a good few options for Summer.
Available in sizes 6-18, I tried on a few things in a 6 and the proportions were on the large side for me personally. However, there were a couple of pieces which were great.
I loved this green Paisley Shirt Dress which had a strong 70’s vibe. There are buttons all the way down the centre, on the cuffs of the cropped sleeves and a pull through belt. It’s a cool midi length, but it would be too long for me without heels. They aim for 5’3″ and under, so it would probably be great for the top end of that height range if you only wear flats. Add some tortoiseshell earrings and a scarf in your hair for boho chic, a comfortable heel for a great office look or flat sandals and a wicker bag for a shopping day. Or you know, if you’re trying it on in a changing room, the barefoot look works too….
The best buy I found were the April Embroidered Ankle Grazer Jeans which have the most amazing embroidery panel and pom pom trim! (you know I’m all about the pom poms). They’re a skinny fit style with pockets and were actually a really good length (22 inch inside leg – slightly cropped, above the ankle) and fit (no bagging around the waist, the waist was actually in the right place, no extra length in the crotch area which usually happens with standard sizing on petite gals).
At £18 they’re an utter bargain too. Limited sizes are left online but they had plenty in my store so it may be worth calling ahead to see if yours has them.
I paired my new jeans with the Collectif Ronda top which continued the pom pom theme and added more colour to what would make a perfect summer bbq outfit. It was such an easy to wear outfit and will be perfect for mooching around in the sunshine too.
I’ll keep my eye on Matalan from now on – I like to support companies which are trying to provide us with a targeted range; that way it’ll encourage others to do so (the same with collections aimed at tall people, too). We need more like this to jump on board and think about torso sizes, waistbands, leg length etc. We are small in stature and in number, but we’re still a target market prime for the taking. Fingers crossed for more petite lines in the future!
For reference, I’m 33:24:33 and a standard size 6 in most shops. I’m 4’11” and wearing 4 inch heels in the main photos.
Belt: Lisa belt in blue from Collectif (I had to add a couple of holes to make it fit)
Shoes: Lorena by Lulu Hun
Hairflowers: Lucina by Miss Bella’s Blooms
Bangles: Mix of Splendette, Bow & Crossbones and Vivien of Holloway
Hello lovelies, it’s that time again! I had the pleasure of attending London Edge at the weekend and ogling all the new pretties heading our way – my goodness, wall to wall fabulousness!
It was so great to see everyone there and catch up with all the staff, models and stockists. I wore my Winona Slither dress with the Carmella coat I bought in the sale – she is divine! With black Lulu Hun Mara shoes upon my feet, I was head to toe in Collectif!
So, what have we got to look forward to? Well, everything! Basically, we will all be broke for the next year because we’ll be buying all the new Spring/Summer pieces and the amazing Autumn/Winter collection. I’d already seen SS19 at last year’s London Edge and have a few pieces already (see here), so I was really looking forward to previewing AW19 and the brand new Menswear range – and oh happy days, it didn’t disappoint! There’s so much I want to share with you that I’ll have to break this up into three parts (SS19, Menswear and AW19).
There are some amazing summer prints heading our way, with pretty pastels as well as bold primary colours too. Faithful staples like the Dolores and Caterinas return in new colourways as well as a whole new range of exciting tops and dresses…and the all important swimwear!
Swimwear launched very recently at Collectif with the Playful Promises collaboration. It’s great to see two independent brands teaming up to produce such a pinup perfect collection! My favourites are the leopard print swimsuit and bikini and the green palm bikini. In a couple of months, more of the collection will be available, including these gorgeous items:
The Watermelon bikini is awesome! I love the cupped styles and some also have light padding in too for extra support. They’re perfect for lounging around a pool with a cocktail in hand at your next beach holiday! I am also considering pairing the leopard swimsuit with slacks to wear for an evening look.
Moving on to separates, there are a dazzling array of new tops coming this spring, including all of these:
The bardot and slash neck tops are such a great addition as they’re such a staple for a retro gal’s wardrobe. You can pair them with anything and instantly feel a little rockabilly. I like wearing mine with capris or wide leg trousers, circle or pencil skirts or under dungarees (check my instagram for styling ideas as I wear these a lot).
There’s also a return to the light sweater tops which are so perfect for spring. These Wendy tops are so reminiscent of the era. I really hope a matching cardigan will come in the future too as twin sets are a personal favourite of mine.
An alternative to the Dolores tops which I know you are all big fans of, is this lovely gypsy style top with elasticated sleeves and button front will be available in a lovely light cotton in black or white. This is going to be great to slip on with anything.
I love broderie anglaise for summer and so I was delighted to see it on a Sammy shirt. Sammy shirts go so well with denim, light trousers or shorts. The tie detail at the front is great for a pinup feel with a bandana in your hair, and I also like to tuck the waist ties into trousers for a slightly tailored look. This one is available on the site to buy now.
The Amanda top was very popular last year and it’s returning in a beautiful, vibrant, red this year! I know this will make a lot of you very happy. I have this in last year’s navy and the button feature at the shoulder is just darling.
The biggest new addition was the range of tshirts which are coming! Yes, you heard it right, tshirts! Such cute retro themed designs which you’ll be able to tuck in or over cute denim on casual days. I adore these and will need the whole set.
Speaking of denim, these sweetheart dungaree shorts and button feature jeans really stood out for me. I love the detailing with the brown buttons at the top.
Moving on to skirts, I loved this new red style which has deep front pockets with a covered button and is begging to be paired with the slash neck stripey tops or a bardot.
The Jasmines are a style I’ve always really liked as they suit so many of us, whatever the size or shape and a full gathered skirt is a perfect 50’s pick. The fruity fun of recent years continues with limes. There’s also a Jade dress in this print and a matching cardigan (we all love a matching cardi!).
The fabulous knitwear continues with the ever gorgeous Chrissie jumpers. This season features the amazing palm print detail to the shoulders in a muted green.
Now, it’s time for the dresses! The Cecilia Lemon print from last year (I have the pencil version of this and it’s beautiful!) has been added to the Dolores collection and as a full swing Cecilia. These look so pretty and the fabric is lovely. Definitely one (or two) to add to your wish list! As you can see from the photo, there’s also a matching lemon cardigan coming too which pairs exquisitely.
This red palm tree print is stunning and will be available as the Dolores shown here, but also in other styles too and in a range of colours. It’s a perfect summer print!
For the Caterina fans, there are new shades like this beautiful pale grey, , a large blue check and a pink and blue check too which are so 50’s!
There’s some radiant sunshine yellow pieces this season too, including the Aria shirt dress with a fresh new look. I love everything yellow – it brightens up even the coolest of summer days!
The Ocean Map wrap dress is very cool (there are a few other styles in this print available online here), teamed with the matching mermaid cardigan.
I also really like this light cotton cactus dress and the totally bananas Lorena (so fun!).
One of my all time faves from last year , the Wanda (I have it in green and the black/white polka dot version already), returns in pastel pink, woohoo!
I’m also a big Outlaw jacket fan and have 3 of the previous styles, but I know this shell pink version will really appeal to the pastel princesses out there!
The accessories and shoes this season are also off the scale! They’ve really outdone themselves! So many colourful jewellery sets, belts, bags, hair pieces and fantastic summer sandals!
I mean, look at these iridescent mermaid shoes and matching bag!!
I particularly love the cute cactus bag, which is also coming in a natural shade.
And I am always a fan of a novelty sandal and a gingham ballet shoe for summer outfits
The gingham continues with these sweet wedges and matching bag. I think the bag would match the black and white Suzanne and June dresses I bought last year too.
As always, this is only a snippet of my own picks, and there will be so much more coming, so if we don’t have the same tastes, rest assured, there will be something coming which will totally grab you!
I hope you’ve enjoyed the little preview of the new collection and parts 2 and 3 will be coming up shortly with menswear and autumn/winter, so subscribe below to be notified of the new posts going live x