Westworld

Being the fan of westerns that I am, I was immediately taken in by the new HBO incarnation of Westworld. Even though I enjoyed the original 1973 film, it wasn’t without its flaws, which is why I was open to a new take on it, and I can say the show did not let me down, and ended its first season with me begging for more. Parts of the show, including its jaw-dropping finale were filmed at the very accessible Paramount Ranch (which we visited before, back in 2015, you can view that post here) so I felt it was time for a revisit! I also took along my friend, Kaitlyn, also a fan of the show, who had never visited Paramount Ranch before.

If you didn’t read my previous post on Paramount Ranch, but are familiar with the 1990s TV show Dr. Quinn: Medicine Woman, then this will look very familiar, as it was used for Colorado Springs. It was also used in the sci-fi sudo-western, Firefly.

Between our first visit and this one, little changed, with the exception of fresh paint and the addition of the church, which was used in Westworld, and I was delighted to find still there.

Keep reading for more images of Paramount Ranch!

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Undercover Rock-and-Roller

Last night Patrick and I went to go see Elvis & Nixon, a film inspired by what may or may not have occurred when Elvis Presley met President Richard Nixon on December 21, 1970. If I wasn’t already digging the idea, the cast made me eager to see it! Michael Shannon, who some may remember from his phenomenal role as Nelson Van Alden in Boardwalk Empire, as Elvis. Johnny Knoxville as Sonny, Elvis’ bodyguard. Kevin Spacey as President Nixon. And Colin Hanks and Evan Peters as members of the White House staff. The trailer was hysterical, and beyond ridiculous, so when it arrived at the local cinema I pulled out my TBC necklace and a belt I think Elvis would be proud of.

I have to talk about this coat though for a sec. It is one of my favorites, and a complete mystery. I snagged it at a local antique mall, and I have absolutely no idea what kind of fur it is. Yak? Llama? Just plain fluffy cow? I honestly don’t know. All I know is it’s rather soft. If you have any ideas, let me know. (Also know that anti-fur, or hate comments will be removed). The coat also does not feature a label of any kind, and has the craziest lining! And the closures are the twist kind that you would commonly find on a purse.

As for the film itself, the viewer must take all of it with a grain of salt. This much is true, Elvis did indeed write a letter to President Nixon wanting to “be of any service” that he could “to help the country out” and did want a badge from the Federal Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs, to likely add to is already large collection of police badges. And after meeting with Nixon, he did received a badge. Priscilla shared that she thought Elvis wanted the badge because he believed with it he could carry his own personal firearms and drugs wherever he wanted. (Source) Some may not view Shannon as a good Elvis, but, it worked for me within the context of the film, and Spacey was actually an amazing Nixon. The film offered many giggles, which is honestly what I’m into these days when it comes to going to the movies. I deal enough with the real world and political issues on the regular basis, I go to the movies to have a good time. The next film I’m looking forward to also happens to take place in the 70s and hopefully is just as funny as its trailer, which is The Nice Guys.

Outfit
Jacket: Country Roads Antiques, Orange, California
Dress, Purse, & Shoes: Buffalo Exchange
Belt: Red Light, Portland, Oregon
Headband: Elsewhere Vintage, Orange, California
TCB Necklace: Ebay

“You built a time machine out of a DeLorean?”

I’m all about preservation. Especially when it comes to preserving movie history, which is often more fragile than one would think. When people make movies, the props, sets, and even costumes are not made to last, or made well really at all. They are made well enough to be shot and, often just tossed. Some items are beloved enough to be saved, even if it isn’t very well. This is what happened with the “A car” or the “Hero car” of Doc Brown’s infamous DeLorean time machine from the Back to the Future films.

First off, what was “A” or “Hero” mean with regards to movie props? Often there are more than one of prop pieces, and they are often of varying quality. “A” means best, with lower qualities following the grading scale schools have, with “B” and “C” props being not as well done. “Hero” is another term used and means the same as “A”. These primo props are the ones used for close-ups and have the most detail. The Back to the Future time machine sat on viewing at Universal Studios Hollywood for years. John Murdy, the Creative Director at Universal felt like it was worth saving, and handed the task of restoring it to the beloved fans of Back to the Future, more specifically a team that had faithfully recreated Doc’s time machine with their own DeLoreans. Joe Walser was the head of the restoration, and his friend Steve Concotelli wanted in, and even though he had no technical skills to help in the actual restoration, he decided he would film it, and documented the process with his film, Outatime: Saving the DeLorean Time Machine, due out later this year.

But with a fully restored car, where should it go? Well earlier this week it found its forever home. No, not back on Universal’s backlot, but in a museum, the Peterson Automotive Museum in Los Angeles, and Patrick and I were there for its unveiling!

Murdy, Walser, and Concotelli, along with Back to the Future writer Bob Gale, were there to unveil the car, as well as offer their insight on the film and the car in a panel (which you can view here).

After the panel guests could view the car up close. It was seriously difficult to shoot this thing, mainly due to the crowd, so I look forward to returning to the Peterson to take more photos of it, along with the rest of their astonishing collection.

It is always nice to be reminded that there are people out there who care so much about film and film history to go through such efforts. The restoration lasted over a year, and it was worth every second, the care is phenomenal, and I can’t wait until the film is released to watch how it happen!

Entering the Wizarding World

I realize that many of you come to my blog for my outfit posts. I never intended my blog to turn into a vintage fashion blog. Vintage fashion was a large part of it of course, but I also wanted to share other vintage things, like housewares, furniture, cars, and even locations. It slowly turned more into fashion because that is what was easy, and what I mostly did when in Portland, with a geeky con thrown in every so often. When I announced our move to California a little over a year ago, I mentioned that some things would be changing for the blog, and I would be sharing more unique places with you, making this blog less about fashion, and more about adventures. Today highlights this change greatly. Today isn’t really about anything vintage. And it’s about something that perhaps isn’t your cup of tea at all, and that’s fine. You are more than welcome to skip this entry. Because today, we’re entering the Wizarding World of Harry Potter!

Since its massive success at Universal Studios Orlando, the Wizarding World of Harry Potter has finally arrived at the original Universal Studios in Hollywood. And I have been eagerly awaiting its arrival! While the Wizarding World of Harry Potter is not slated to “officially open” until April 7th, Universal has been soft opening the new area for a few weeks now, but between my brother’s visit and our week in Palm Springs I was unable to visit until this last week and I was overjoyed!

So, if you’re a Harry Potter fan, get ready for a pretty picture heavy post!

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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!

Outfit
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

Season of the Force

As Disney prepares for its upcoming release of the seventh Star Wars film and the development of the new land inspired by the franchise, the Disneyland Resort kicked off “Season of the Force” Monday in Tomorrowland, which involved some heavy changes to the area. Since moving, I am more eager than ever to visit the park on the first day of things, so that way I don’t have to see it on the internet before experiencing it in person, which is what always occurred when we lived in Portland, so Patrick and I were among hundreds of other Star Wars fans who descended on Disneyland bright and early Monday morning.

Just a few weeks prior to the kick off of the Season of the Force, Star Trader, one of the shops in Tomorrowland, began to stock even more Star Wars merchandise, including many items from the Her Universe Star Wars collection. I snagged two of her “costume” dresses, one Han Solo, the other Boba Fett, which I wore for the occasion.

The Boba Fett dress is made sleeveless out of t-shirt material, but, as the day called for wind (so, pardon the hair), and cooler temperatures, I got a little creative and wore a sweater under the dress, giving the illusion of long sleeves. The costume dresses are super cute, and comfy, but I ran into the problem I do with so many garments, both new and vintage, where the waist is too high. I have a lower than average waist, and this is a struggle I am constantly battling, but these two dresses were just too cute, I had to have them.

Love Star Wars and want to know what has changed at the Disneyland Resort? Keep reading for more info and loads of pictures from the Star Wars Launch Bay.

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Great Scott!

Today is the day! It’s Back to the Future Day! Today is the day that Marty McFly went into the future! Fans of the Back to the Future trilogy have been awaiting this day, as well as their hoverboards, which still have not arrived! Seriously, Mattel? Get with it. Anyway, while we may not have flying cars, hoverboards, clothing that automatically adjusts, or dehydrated pizza, but we still have made quite a lot of technological advances. The Back to the Future films have always been a favorite of mine, especially the third film. My favorite scene happens early when Doc needs to send Marty to 1885, from 1955, and does from a drive-in movie theatre that is western themed called the Pohatche. It is one beautiful drive-in, and I did some digging to see if it was real, or made up, and the background, which is Monument Valley, was a matte. I learned that the drive-in was in fact built just for that scene, and I came across this t-shirt, which I instantly had to buy.

I wore it out shopping for a flapper gown (for an event in April, I plan super ahead) before going into work for the day. I am kind of bummed I didn’t have the day off, I would have loved to have returned to Universal Studios or ran around completing this fabulous Back to the Future filming location map! I hope to visit each of these locations sooner or later though. How about you? Are you a Back to the Future Fan? Are you disappointed in our lack of hoverboards?

Outfit
T-Shit: The Sloth Brain
Shorts: I honestly don’t remember
Shoes: Olvera Street, Los Angeles, Ca.
Purse: Retro Rejuvenation, Coburg, Or.
Turquoise Jewelry: Ortega’s Capistrano Trading Post, San Juan Capistrano, Ca.