Friday, 23 October 2015

Putting on the Ritz

The crème de last crème of all afternoon teas has got to be the Ritz!  I can see the sign, written in lights above the door, in my mind so clearly. With Hollywood starlets sacheying through the dining room, wearing bias cut satin and sipping champagne as the grande piano is played. All marble and gold leaf decor, what's not to dream about!

Ok- so I may have gone overboard with the description, but I was so excited to be finally going for tea at the Ritz!!!
 And it didn't disappoint!
(There really was a grand piano being played)

The staff were very accommodating, more so than anywhere else I have taken tea. They went out of their way to make sure we had everything we wanted.
 There was a live pianist playing throughout our tea who played mostly classic Disney songs. I'm a huge Disney fan so that was just lovely. 'The circle of life' in particular was very well done!

The whole ambiance really did give the afternoon a great sense of occasion. (I love a sense of occasion!)

The forget-me-not design on the china  was so sweet and dainty. And the brushed silver cutlery very elegant. 

I have never seen scones that all looked so identically perfect, but as I usually find if it looks too good to be true then it is. They were a little dry and tasteless. Also the jam was not home made. Tut tut, really could do better Ritz!

They did more than make up for it with the French patisseries though. All were immensely delicious! 

I'm a massive sandwich fan, these were particularly scrumptious! And I totally kept requesting refills.
 (Got to get my money's worth!) And no one complained about my excessive greed! Woo Hoo!!!

Grande! Oh so Grande!

All that glittering gold, every edge adorned so indulgently.

So much to look at, I was absorbed by my surroundings and the whole feel of the experience. You can't help but feel sophisticated surrounded by this level of luxury. 

Another hairstyle to add to my favourites!
I really like this look because it was really easy, and let's face it- quick and easy makes all hairstyling better!

 Of course, I wore gloves, if there ever was a glove wearing occasion - this was it! And a vintage fur stole had to be added for the glamorous finishing touch.
This outfit was totally unplanned, for once I managed to pull together a totally spontaneous look that worked. It usually ends up either too matchy matchy or clash central. I wasn't  disappointed at all with this look though, I was going for a sassy, trendy 50s debutante vibe here, and I reckon I hit the nail on the head. 

I made this little brooch from a tutorial on Lavender&Twill. So easy to make and it is really sweet. I'm planning a light pink version next.  

What an incredible place! It is difficult to explain the feeling of it all, but I felt full of excitement and joy while I was there. It is a must see for any one who gets the opportunity to go!

For The Ritz I would score as follows -
  1. Mise-en-scène - 5/5 - An opulent setting. Very impressive! 
  2. Tea - 4/5 - A nice selection of loose leaf teas, but I have had better Earl Grey else where. 
  3. Scones - 3/5 - The scones were beautiful, all looked exactly the same but lacking in flavour.
  4. Service - 5/5 - Attentive staff, unbeatable service!
  5. Value - 4/5 - ok it is expensive, but worth every penny! (50 pounds per person)

Total: 21/25 

I hope you enjoyed my little peek into a magical place!



Wednesday, 14 October 2015

The Last Sigh of Summer.

For the final 'Summer Look' of the year (though I'm adamant a few outfits can still be worn with tights and a cardigan)  I present a super easy look!

In Italy it is compulsory to take pictures in fabulous doorways! There are so many to choose from.
A little peplum top and fitted pencil skirt is a look that is forever elegant!
This is the type of sewing that I like, really easy and yet effective! 

I love the print of this top, I don't own much pink but now I'm 're thinking that for next year- Pink Rocks!

I have a new love for linen, once you come to terms with the creasing it really does look effortless. 

My favourite bag at the moment, but it is going to have to be packed away till spring now. Until next year lovely bag!

I'm usually quite precious with Vintage items. I want to have things that look practically new, but as you can see, this bag is discoloured- and I dont care! 

The old town of Céfalu in Sicily.

A bit of a messy French twist is perfect at the sea side!

As we wave goodbye to the sun in the UK I'm usually dreading the upcoming cold. But this year with some clever sewing and knitting choices, teamed with some lucky vintage finds, I am hoping to be better prepared! 

Are you looking forward to the change in season rapidly approaching?

Are you already prepared?



Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Fabulous Vintage Playsuit!

 I wanted to create a playsuit that could be worn both elegantly for lunch and playfully at the beach. I combined a few different vintage patterns for this look and I couldn't be happier with the result!

 To accesorise the look I carried this new to me- vintage 50s crochet bag. I love the shape of this bag, and it's neutral enough to go with pretty much all my summer wardrobe!
(I try to only buy accessories that I can use easily as space is very limited)

 These tan shoes I have had for ages but never wore because they kept slipping off my feet. I found some suede sling back grips online and now I can wear these beauties comfortably!
(Who knew sling backs are not meant to be dangerous?)

 For the top I used the Mrs Depew Beach Bustier pattern but left off the added detail and made it very simple. Best let the print speak for itself. Oh, and I also made it less pointy, seems to get a mixed reaction when I go for pointy boobs!

Very simple in the back!

 I love the Bakelite buttons I had in my stash, they are glorious!
I don't have a button hole function on my sewing machine though so poppers behind the buttons had to do.
 I must admit that I love poppers, you can rip this skirt of in the most dramatic flourish!

I always play with hairstyles on holiday, I like to have my neck free in order to stay cool. This only took about 10 minutes of playing around but I felt sophisticated all day. 

 Now here comes the drama! 

Whip off the skirt to reveal cute shorts!

Wack on a 40s Duster cap!
(Just imagine doing your house work in a bow that big)

 And you are ready for some beach fun! 

 Yay! I finally have a cute - Vintage Capsule 4 piece! All the pieces I can mix and match with garments I already have in my wardrobe, but teamed all together I think this 4 piece is something special!

I love, love, love the print!!!

And I get to add 3 more vintage patterns to my Vintage Pledge.
That bring me to a total of 9 out of 10, Woo Hoo!

What do you think?

Do you have a cute playsuit?



P.S. Pattern details-

I extended and curved the bust darts to make a more round bust shape and did not include the top frame detail. I made straight straps instead of a halter strap.
I made the skirt from this pattern.  A nice simple make!
I made the shorts with 3 inches extra volume added at the hem for each leg because these are either meant to be incredibly tight or I have bigger thighs than I would ever admit! And I did not do the turn up finish, I did a double turn and topstitch finish.
And finally the Duster Cap is from the 1940s book 'The pictorial guide to modern home dressmaking' I found a fantastic tutorial on the blog Vintage Follies that makes this a really easy and enjoyable make.