Thursday, 28 May 2009

Books, books, books.

I've just got back from the Hay literary festival- read about my bookish adventures here.If you fancy some intellectual stimulation of your own, keep an eye out for Angela Hill's Pop Up bookshop, set to grace St Martin's Lane on 1st June.
Or hang on til the 3rd June, when the Soho House literary salon will be held in Shoreditch House. Highlights include:
Times columnist Sathnam Sanghera reveals love, secrets and lies in Wolverhampton in his award-winning memoir 'The Boy With the Top Knot'.
Geoff Dyer takes us on a tour of the canals and rivers less travelled in 'Jeff in Venice, Death in Varanasi' his stunning new novel--his first for 11 years.
Alex Heminsley, Elle Books Editor, is doing the Story of Your Life. What book says most about you?
You can attend even if you're not a member of the oh- so- shoreditch, Shoreditch House, but members do get priority, so book a place if you're planning on going.

Thursday, 21 May 2009

More adventures from the House of Fairytales

I am busy packing my wellies,mac and other wet weather paraphernalia in the hope that it will ensure I don't need them at Hay literary festival this weekend. Whilst I'm super excited about going and spending the weekend with Stephen Fry and other brainy folk, I'm a bit gutted it falls at the same time that so much amazing stuff is going down in London. If you're in the capital over the bank holiday, head to the Tate Modern Art Povera Long weekend. My all time favourite art outfit House of Fairytales will be running workshops, performances, installations and surprises on the lawns of the Tate.Founded by artists Gavin Turk and Deborah Curtis, HofF is an arts and education charity that will be collaborating with artists, authors, film makers, composers, seamstresses, inventors and Maypole dancers over the weekend to get everyone into the DIY spirit. Their teen curated venture, Candlelit Matinee will also be holding a cabaret with live bands, comedy and open mic acts. Special guests include Prick Your Finger for knitting shenanigans, Clay Time giant sculpture, Grandmother's bed storytelling from a four-poster and Byrne and Lau's chess laboratory.
House of Fairytales will also be creating a garden at the Chelsea Flower festival, with a procession leaving the site to join activities at the Tate on Sunday 24th.
Watch out for the House of Fairytales Caravan which will be hitting the road for Glastonbury, Latitude, Port Eliot and more...
For what to do with your evenings this weekend, have a look at my Vintagesecret blog.

Monday, 18 May 2009


Mermaids..pangs of jealousy hit me when I woke up this morning to see pictures of Katy Perry emerging from a giant shell a la Ariel. An entire childhood spent swishing my hair around in the pool/sea/bath,legs squished together in a tail, feet flipped out as fins- has left being able to breathe under water number one on my 'most wanted' list of supernatural powers. Anyone else who shares my affection for our mer- relatives, indulge in these aquatic trinkets from Etsy:
Vintage peach shell clutch bag- from Sunbeamed
Adult size custom made mermaid tail- pictured above, from Fairiescloset, and to complete the look:
Mermaid seashell pasties (they chafe a lot less than the real thing)- from BoudoirBetty
Steampunk mermaid earrings- from Ellepaisley

Sunday, 17 May 2009

BURST: 51 reasons for living

Friday night I popped down to the BURST festival at Battersea Arts Centre- sadly I missed Solo, but managed to catch 'And the line goes dead' by Timothy X Attak- a conversation on a very unique telephone that can put you in touch with the dead. After that I popped to Peachy Coochy Nights-a projector, 20 images and just 20 seconds per image during which the presenter/Coocheur talks about the image. Subjects ranged from typography to splodges on the pavement. No really- that one was undoubtedly the best thing I've seen for yonks- I'll definitely be going to the Peachy Coochy regular spot on the last Thursday of each month in Artsadmin's Arts bar and cafe. Anyone interested in the future of interactive theatre should head along to Polarbear's character writing for performance masterclass on 30th May, an introduction to creating new writing for performance, focusing on generation of character and naturalistic performance.If you're up for something less experimental, just head to the cafe for one of the live gigs, or the old-fashioned tea dance in the grand hall on 29th May.

Friday, 15 May 2009

My Sugarland fete

One of my all time favourite London shops is holding an old school summer fete tomorrow!I say shop, but this is drastically over-simplifying things- My sugarland is so much more than your average store. Created by stylist Zoe Lem, the space is an Aladdin's cave of gorgeous fashion finds- both vintage gems and modern pieces by the likes of Belle Sauvage, PPQ and Armand Basi. Sugarland also acts as a gallery space for artists, further enhancing the retail experience, and if you're as besotted as I am; but maybe slightly better endowed financially,you can hire the space for your own events.
Tomorrow Zoe and co are hosting their own summer fete,from 12 noon to 7pm.A 10% discount will be available all day, as well as a tom bola, the all important cake stand, and live music towards the end of the day.Laura Lees,(who's designs you might have seen in Topshop) will be on hand to advise you on how to customize your favourite T, sewing lessons and kits available. More creative skills on show from Bernadette Deddens who'll be crafting her one of a kind conceptual jewellery pieces. Make-up artist to the stars, Emily Newson will be dishing out make-overs along with celebrity nail beautician Gigi.And Zoe Lem herself will be offering special 30 minute body shape analysis and styling sessions.
Have a crazy day of work tomorrow, but will definitely try to pop in and take some pics for those of you who don't make it. A quick look at the fancy website is sure to convince you to make the effort though.I'm off to the press night of BURST festival at Battersea Arts Centre tonight- 51 reasons for living; 51 pieces of experimental theatre designed to cheer us up, mid recession/depression. Expect the weird and wonderful, not to mention tonnes of nudity- I'll be blogging about the acts on Run-Riot, and the festival runs for the next two weeks,so stay tuned.

Friday, 8 May 2009

Storm in a teacup

Yet another designer range of Liberty print inspired pieces- following Cacharel, Nike and Kate Moss for Topshop, cutting edge brand APC has launched its own capsule collection. I say cutting edge, but their £140 Poppy and Daisy Liberty print smock dress is one of the most basic designs you can churn out of a sewing machine-so if you have one, buy some print fabric on ebay and DIY.
It is still worth heading down to Liberty for 'Storm in a teacup' ; an exhibiton of Storm Thorgerson's work on the 4th floor East atrium. Storm has designed the album artwork for all the big names-Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Genesis, Black Sabbath, the Cranberries, Ian Dury, Muse, the Mars Volta and Biffy Clyro.
STORM IN A TEACUP is a collection of limited edition fine art prints derived from original artwork and printed as either silkscreen or giclee, including a special 'teacup print' for the occasion, and even some custom teacups.
If you fancy meeting the artist, he'll be in store on Saturday 9th May from 3pm - 6pm.

Thursday, 7 May 2009

Go Green and Grind A Go Go!

Get ready for the G-force this weekend, starting tomorrow with the last in the Go Green series of talks and events run by the SU of the university of the arts, London. Friday 8th they give you a guide to starting and running your own ethical fashion label, organised by the ECCA and the Centre for Sustainable Fashion, check here for details.
Saturday night Bethnal Green Working Men's Club hosts the regular Ohmygodimissyou 60s clubnight extravaganza, Grind a Go Go. I will be there with some seriously big hair to celebrate my last young persons railcard-eligible birthday. If you have trouble convincing boys to dress up and come along- remind them there will be half naked dancing Go Go girls as well as a revolving mirrored stage- I've never met a man whose ego could resist that.
Sunday sees yet another Pop up shop springing into being at 3 Lowndes court, W1F7HD. Opening its doors at 10am, the store will exist til 7pm only, selling jewellery,t-shirts,sunglasses, sweets and other everyday essentials.
One of my favourite publications, Creature Mag, has been blogging about the Dalston fete at Cafe Oto this Sunday, 10th May- if past events are anything to go by, this should be a treat. Happy Weekend everyone.

Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Wishful thinking

Do you have tonnes of spare cash?Don't know what to do with it?Then this post is for YOU. Limited edition signed prints of some of the swankiest photos from the last few decades.Hang Naomi Campell in your guest loo for only a couple of thousand euros!For everyone else, just enjoy the pics online- I adore the supermodels speak/hear/see no evil one.See more gorgeous pictures here , including Kate Moss on an elephant.

Monday, 4 May 2009

Pyjama party

This weekend Time for Tea are whisking people away to their vintage slumber party, The White Blackbird, in a wonderful mansion outside of London.Promises of pillow fight rings, Victorian seances, burlesque shows in the bath and cinema screenings of black and white classics mean there are precious few tickets still up for grabs. The lucky people who have tickets have, though, been faced with quite a quandary- what to wear to said vintage extravaganza? That baggy old t-shirt you got from the team training day at work certainly won't do. But neither will that skimpy camisole number- you may have to Publictransport it to the pick up points remember!Some sort of cover up will be needed- and as luck would have it, Vintage Secret can help!We have a limited number of original 1930s dressing gowns in stock- give us a shout if you fancy coming and trying one on during the week.
Dolce and Gabbana obviously foresaw the whole resurgence of the sleepover when designing their latest collection- vintage silk PJs all the way (see the ad pictured above)If you can't stretch to D&G prices, have a look at this gorgeous pair on one of my all time favourite sites for lounging about-wear: Hush. If you want to stick to the genuine article, there are all the normal ebay/etsy options- I found a couple of gems here, here and here, and check out these PJs and this smoking jacket for any men you're dragging along.
If you want something a bit daring to wear under your dressing gown,just in case it turns out to be that sort of night (this is more than likely) then log on to La Magia (high tea chemise pictured left ) and invest in some gorgeous vintage inspired undies. Just make sure you contain your excitement and resist the urge to show them off on the tube- we don't want anyone getting done for indecent exposure.

Friday, 1 May 2009

Vintage sales

Recession need not spell the end to retail therapy happiness- as this bank holiday weekend proves with an array of vintage sales and jumbles. The joy of finding something with its own history, that's completely unique and environmentally friendly for £1.50 certainly beats a trip to Primark. Here's the line up:

Go Green week's Vintage and second hand Fayre at the Hub cafe, run by the Students' Union of the University of the Arts London. From 3-8pm this afternoon.

Jumble and Pearls

Jumble and Pearls is a monthly vintage sale with added alcohol and DJs at the Albert and Pearl in Islington.Offers a mixture of men’s and women’s designer labels, vintage, high street wares, accessories, footwear plus allsorts of jumble jumble and more cracking jumble...labels such as; APC, Vanessa Bruno, Vivienne Westwood, Sonia Rykiel, Frost French, Moschino, Dolce & Gabbana, Gucci / street labels ; Diesel, Boxfresh, Fenchurch, Ben Sherman, Adidas, Fred Perry, Hysteric Glamour, Stussy and plenty of vintage 20s, 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s and 80s. Tomorrow is their 7th event, from noon until 5pm.Warning- queues have been known to form around the block so get there early....

Jumble at The Amersham Arms
Another tomorrow, May 2nd,they'll be tons of stalls across two floors selling: Vintage clothing, Vinyl, Jewellery, Crafts, Bric-a-brac, artwork, homemade savouries, vegetarian lunches and fantastic cakes.Plus a fully stocked bar and top indie, retro and lo-fi DJs.

Vintage Fashion Fair, Primrose Hill

Head up to Kate Moss's neck of the woods to bag some vintage gems from this North London vintage set up.Expect fashion, accessories and textiles as well as home made food and refreshments.From 11am-5pm this Sunday 3rd May, £3 entry.
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