Down Here in New Orleans

Over the past couple of weeks I have been working on a top secret Disney project. It started with a desire to have something unique for Dapper Day, and spawned into a massive endeavor creating multiple variations. Originally I intended to debut the first of my creations on Valentine’s Day, but when I spied Mardi Gras on the calendar, I couldn’t help debuting a more recent creation. What is this top secret project? Disney parasols!

With it being Mardi Gras, and Disneyland having its very own Big Easy, I decided to visit the park and Disneybound as Princess and the Frog’s Charlotte LeBoeuf, Tiana’s near and dear friend, who begs Tiana to whip up some of her “man catchin’ beignets” so she can snag herself a prince. Also, this parasol design is pretty much an ode to my love of beignets.

I also thought this the perfect opportunity to visit with some of the characters from Princess and the Frog, including the Shadow Man himself, Dr. Facilier, Tiana and that jazz loving gator, Louis, who is also a mighty fine dancer!

I have completed a few more Disney inspired parasols that you’ll see pop up, and have a long list of others that I am planning on creating. I also made a mate to this one, featuring Tiana and her beignets, which I made as a gift for fellow Disney lover and blogger, Carla of Tiny Angry Crafter. I hope she and I can visit together soon with them.

Dress: Wanderlust, Portland, Oregon
Belt: Nordstorm
Shoes: Re-Mix
Bangles & Scarf: Don’t remember…
Mardi Gras Pin & Purse: Disneyland

Celebrate at Cicada

Over the weekend one of my friends celebrated her birthday, and she decided to do it in style by having a Gatsby themed dinner at Cicada Club, which is located in the Oviatt Building, the oldest Art Deco building in Los Angeles. Even before moving to California I had heard of Cicada. Portland friends like Sarah of Simply Vintage and Julie of FabGabs Vintage had been during visits to LA, and boasted of its elegant ambiance. So, needless to say I was excited!

If you truly ever wanted to step back in time to a jazz supper club of the 1920s or 30s, with dinner, drinks, live entertainment, and dancing, Cicada is closest you’re going to get. With its live performances, it’s simply spectacular, and many people take the evenings quite seriously, as there were quite a few women in floor length gowns. For the evening, I pulled out my one real 20s gown. Even though I recently purchased a repro beaded flapper dress from Unique Vintage, but I’m saving it for an event in April. And just before the event I found blue velvet heels at Elsewhere Vintage! Along with repros of Daisy’s pieces from Baz Luhrmann’s Great Gatsby.

The interior of Cicada may be familiar to fans of American Horror Story: Hotel, as its interior is the inspiration for the lobby of the Hotel Cortez, and the outside was used for the exterior shots of the Cortez. And at the conclusion of Hotel, Cicada received the Art Deco light fixtures used in the lobby. But Cicada wasn’t always a swank supper club, it actually started out as a haberdashery that many classic stars of the silver screen frequented. Speaking of the silver screen and seeming a bit familiar. A scene from The Artist was also filmed here, and prior to Cicada taking over the space, another restaurant, Rex Il Ristorante, was home here, and was the location for the infamous “slippery little suckers” scene in Pretty Woman.

Our whole party had a delightful time, and I am looking forward to returning, as it is the perfect place to go all gussied up!

1920s Blue Velvet Gown: Thrifted, if you can believe it!
Vintage Fur Stole: Nobody’s Baby, Eugene, Oregon
Pearls: Gift from my mother
Brooch: Belonged to my grandmother
Purse, Heels, Gatsby Repro headpiece and bracelet/ring combo: Elsewhere Vintage, Orange, California

Rey Day

Unless you either live under a rock or simply don’t care one ounce about Star Wars, then you’ve heard of the controversy surrounding the lack of Star Wars: The Force Awakens merchandise featuring its lead character, Rey. There has been a slew of articles written (including one where the film’s director J.J. Abrams chimes in.), and the latest says that toymakers were told specifically not to include her, as they didn’t believe boys would want toys that included a female (no, never mind that in 1977 boys played with ’em.). And after the outcry over the lack of Rey in the Force Awakens Monopoly game, (which Hasbro claims she was omitted because of spoilers, which I think is a load of BS), they are finally re-issuing the game with her in it. Where am I going with all of this? Well, we felt like we should show our support for the awesome character by giving Rey her own day. A few of my friends came up with idea and organized the event and we converged on Disneyland in Rey Disneybounds.

Later in the day a few of us decided we should visit Chewbacca, who was overjoyed to see so many gals dressed up as his new friend. Also, wookies give the best hugs. Period.

Also mid-way through the day I met one of my art idols, Brianna of Brianna Garcia Illustration! If you love Disney you should for sure check her out.

For as much as I love Disney, I hardly Disneybound. I think a lot of this is because my wardrobe isn’t full of color blocked basics, which I think are key to Disneybounding. This is why my Maleficent Disneybound felt like an accomplishment. So, when I got invited to Rey Day I thought “Oh, she’s just khaki…I got loads of that.” Sadly, my initial idea failed miserably, so I dashed the TJ Maxx that is practically next door and found nearly my entire bound there. My feelings that I had while shopping the racks of TJ Maxx could be a post in itself, but I’ll spare you. Despite the numerous “WTF!?” moments when shopping and trying stuff on, I am overjoyed with the outcome, and it was so well received.

Wrap & Belt: Thrifted
Sweater, Top & Pants: TJ Maxx
Boots: Buffalo Exchange
Purse & Rey Button by Loungefly: Charming Shoppe, Orange, California

Dolly and Dotty

Recently I was contacted by the UK based, retro influenced clothing company Dolly and Dotty to see if I was interested in test driving one of their items for review. For the most part Dolly and Dotty’s website is full of the classic retro staples, with fitted dresses, swing dresses, pencil skirts and striped tops, and also features its fair share of polka-dots and cherries. In flipping through their pages, I spied a navy pencil skirt (one of many shades I am lacking) and I instantly opted for it.

When the skirt arrived I was impressed by the smoothness of the fabric, and that it had great body to it, but didn’t feel bulky. The garment is made of 95% cotton (yay!) and 5% spandex, which is to be expected from almost any modern garment. The skirt is fully lined in a super soft fabric, that feels like a thin, old, cotton t-shirt (in the best way, you know the one you’ve had for ages and feels fabulous). All of the visible fabric edges are surged, and I believe the lining hem is surged prior to being folded over and hemmed, as there is a bit of extra surging thread peeking out at the hem. Speaking of hems, like most contemporary garments, this skirt features a regularly stitched hem.

The skirt features an eight and a half inch invisible zipper and hook and eye along the back. Also note the skirt features a Hollywood Waist (no separate waistband), and I have become really fond of the style. The skirt’s care tag is located along the left side lining, and recommends it gets hand washed, which I will likely do. The tag also reads that this skirt was made in China. A bit of a bummer. The skirt is 25 inches in length and you can see in the next few pictures, it hits me right below my knee cap, and I stand 5′ 6″.

At a 27 inch waist and 38 inch hip, I opted for a UK size 10 by using their size chart. And the skirt fits like a gem. It hugs just right, and feels great because of that soft lining. Patrick and I had to run a few errands today so wore the skirt for its trial run.

I will say that because it is cotton, it does wrinkle fairly easily. The visible wrinkles are from me adjusting my top when getting dressed and from our car ride. But I will also so I really do like this skirt, as it was incredibly comfortable, and the wee bit of stretch and the seven inch slit in the back made walking easy. Those familiar with older pencils will know some skirts don’t allow for a good stride. And I’m a girl with a fairly long stride. I also got a handful of compliments as we popped in and out of shops. So, I’m pretty happy!

Two-Tone Fringe Leather Jacket & Tooled Leather Purse: Found by my dad!
Blouse: Buffalo Exchange
Skirt: Courtesy of Dolly & Dotty. Thank you!
Nude Fishnets: Oroblu
Shoes: Olvera Street, Los Angeles, California
Turquoise Bracelet: Christmas present from my mother
Turquoise Rings: One came from Expo I think…the other…not sure…

Disclaimer: I received this skirt free of charge from Dolly and Dotty in exchange for an honest review of their garment.

Fur & Feathers Comes to LA!

Just a little preface: This post will show a lot of vintage fur. To read my views on fur please read this post. Please also note that unkind comments will be deleted from the comments section.

Long time readers of my blog will remember an annual event that Julie of FabGabs Vintage would put on, called Fur & Feathers, which I attended multiple times during the time I lived in Portland. Fur & Feathers was boasted as a time when vintage lovers could break out their beloved pieces that featured fur and feathers, hence the name, as well as incorporate items of alligator or snake, or other wearable items derived from animals, insects, etc. When January came around in 2015 I saw many of my vintage loving Portland friends attending the luncheon and I bemoaned missing out on the event. But in the last year I have met a slew of vintage lovers here, and I was able to put together the first ever Fur & Feathers: Los Angeles! We wanted to include the men folk as well, so prints were also encouraged, and the men came out wearing fun ties featuring birds, feathers and other animals!

In Portland, the Fur & Feathers Luncheon was held at Huber’s, Portland’s oldest restaurant, but for LA I decided the newly remodeled Clifton’s would be quite fitting because it is home to quite a few pieces of taxidermy.

We had an awesome turn out, I think we had 22 people! Including friend and fellow blogger, Christine of Smitten. And we received quite a lot compliments, which is always wonderful. I can’t wait to do this again next year!

Vintage Fur Wrap: Christmas present from Patrick
Hat: Expo
Dress (which features one of my favorite labels, Miss Hollywood): Plucky Maidens Junk Fest
Shoes: Farylrobin
Bracelets: Belonged to my great grandmother

The La Brea Tar Pits

Over the weekend Patrick and I went to the La Brea Tar Pits. Finally! We had been wanting to go since we moved, but I wanted to wait until I found myself a piece of jewelry featuring my favorite prehistoric creature, the saber-toothed cat (formally known as the Smilodon), which I happily found on Etsy from Hungry Designs. I was beyond excited to finally see the loads of fossils that have been discovered right in the heart of Los Angeles since 1913, and are still being found to this day.

The Page Museum at the La Brea Tar Pits offers a lot of insight into the area we now know as Los Angeles during the prehistoric time period, with thousands of fossils on display, active dig sites and labs. When peeking through the window into a lab we observed paleontologists working on finding micro-fossils using microscopes. One used her phone to take a picture through her microscope to show what she had found, which I thought was a really nifty way of showing what she was seeing. Another unique offering at the Page Museum is the Encounter Theatre where guests learn more about Rancho La Brea, the current digs going on, and even encounter a real life saber-toothed cat! Or, at least a very incredible, life sized puppet of one.

I’ve loved saber-toothed cats since I can remember. I recall once at day care (like pre-kindergarten) we used stencils to decorate necklaces we were making, and after using a cat stencil I added the large teeth to make a saber-toothed cat. And as a full grown adult I made a saber tooth cat at Build-a-Bear when it was offered a little ways back. Also, fun fact the saber-toothed cat is the official state fossil of California!

Sweater: I honestly don’t remember…
Skirt & Penny Loafers: Buffalo Exchange
Purse: Present from my sister
Sabor Tooth Cat Brooch: Hungry Designs
Scarf: Thrifted…probably…


Sorry for the radio silence since Christmas Eve. I wish I could say it was due to the busy holiday season, but alas, I finally caught the cold Patrick got earlier in the month, and we’ve spent every day since Christmas Eve bundled up and drinking gallons of tea, until yesterday. No, I’m not over my cold yet, nor is he, but ages ago he made secret Fantasmic dinner reservations, as the show will be disappearing for the next year, because its staging area will be disrupted by the building of the new Star Wars themed land coming to Disneyland. So I’ve included quite a few snaps from the show too here, so prepare for a picture heavy post!

Fantasmic is my favorite thing at Disneyland, and I wasn’t going to let a little cold stand between me and a dinner at Blue Bayou followed by prime Fantasmic viewing. So, loaded up with cold meds I got dressed in one of my few Disneybound outfits (wearing street clothes that are inspired by Disney characters. You can read more here) and we made our way to the park. I bounded as Maleficent, as she is one of my favorite villains, and a centerpiece to Fantasmic.

So, what is Fantasmic and what do I mean by “Fantasmic dinner reservations”? To those unfamiliar with Fantasmic, I hope the above images help out. The show takes Guests into Mickey’s imagination and Guests witness a beautiful spectacle featuring live characters, projections and, my favorite part, Maleficent turning into a fire breathing dragon. As for the dining aspect, this year Disneyland introduced the Fastpass ticketing to the show. It’s similar to what is used for World of Color at Disney’s California Adventure, for those who may have participated in that. Prior to this, Fantasmic was strictly first-come-first-served seating, and those wishing to view from prime locations sat for hours before the show. Seriously, I’m not kidding. Plopping down at 5:30 or 6:00 for a show that didn’t start until 9:00. Yeah, and I was one of them. I did it a ton before the ticketing system was introduced. Now, to sit in the same area as we did before, Guests must purchase a dining package from either the Blue Bayou or the River Belle Terrace. Other seating areas, around the sides, are reserved for regular Fastpass Guests, who must plan ahead and visit the distribution location, located behind Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, to get a ticket. And they do run out! To learn more about Fantasmic, and their dining system, click here. But know, Fantasmic will be closing up shop during the construction of the new Star Wars themed land.

You can be certain I am paying for our outing last night, I’ve already taken cold meds, drank two cups of tea, and had a smoothie. I really need to focus on getting better because my dad arrives this weekend! He’s staying in town for about a week, so I need to be better so I can spend time with him. So, I’m doubtful of any New Years celebrations.

Motorcycle Jacket: Thrifted
Top: Buffalo Exchange
Skirt: Switchblade Stiletto
Belt & Scarf: I don’t remember…
Fishnets: Oroblu, Nordstorm
Flats: Marshall’s
Purse: Lux De Ville, but was a surprise gift from Patrick
Pin: Was a trade
Ears: Disneyland