It’s only Self-hosting but I like it…


Sorry for my absence this week, I’ve been busy finding out how to host my site myself!

I wanted a bit more freedom with regard to what I could include so decided to host the website myself via

It’d be tremendously helpful if you’d amend your favourites – I’m now to be found at

Come on over – all the existing content is still there, and that’s where all the new stuff will be too. Lots of exciting projects in the offing – don’t miss out!

It is with a forward march I say:

It’s only Vintage but i like it!


Travel by train

Love this post from Mrs Fox – have always adored these old seaside adverts! Enjoy!

Mrs Fox's Finery

The January weather is too cold and I think I’m not alone in being fed up with the post Christmas winter chills;  it seems holidays are on everyone’s mind at the moment.

All the magazines are telling you the best places to go, places where it’s hot this time of the year, or there are endless adverts for planning the ‘holiday of a life-time’ in 2015 (if you have the money and holiday time).

However there was a time when going to the coast in the UK was the done thing. When familys would get on a train with endless amounts of luggage to a seaside town for their summer holiday. I was reminded of this when a friend gave me an old calendar of hers with images of 1940s and 1950s adverts from the railways.

I had remarked earlier last year when at their house for drinks how much…

View original post 240 more words

It’s only perfume but I like it…

Smell is the most sensitive of the senses. It is the sense most linked to emotional recollection and one study showed that people could recall scents within 65% accuracy after a year whilst visual recall is about 50% within 3 months.

With this in mind I think the choice of scent to go with my vintage attire is very important. My first thoughts about vintage scent were the bottles of Yardley perfume my Gran always had in her handbag. My Gran sadly suffered a stroke when I was just 4 and she remained house ( well, chair) bound for over 14 years following that. Next to her chair she always kept her handbag – as though she may be called upon to leave the house at any moment. It contained – amongst other things- lipstick, perfume and, I seem to recall, a love letter my Grandad sent her when he was serving in Burma during the Second World War. There was a perfume called Tweed, a blue bottle containing a perfume called Blue Lace and possibly others. The smells were not pleasing to my little nose, a bit cloying perhaps, but I still loved the feel of the cool glass bottle, the shiny material which formed the drawstring purse it came in and I longed to arch my neck and spray clouds of quickly dissipating loveliness on my skin. It seemed so grown up.

I toyed with a rose scented perfume a few years back. The Body Shop’s Moroccan Rose to be exact.


Most of my friends dismissed it as ‘Granified’ but I liked it’s old worldly charm. Paul Smith has a nice rose scented perfume – a little more musky, but delicious.


But it was on a recent shopping trip I decided to try a new shop. I have passed the odd Jo Malone store on my travels but never really delved in. I visited the store in John Lewis in West Quay, Southampton and had a very nice experience. I explained I was looking for something floral and vintage-y and the assistant was very helpful. She showed me several different scents and sprayed them onto cards for me, then let me wander and sniff until I’d made a decision.

In the end I plumped for the English Pear and Freesia, finding it floral with a hint of sweetness.

I’ve mentioned my penchant for nice packaging before and this was definitely a box I could tick!


The cream and black packaging is very classy and two samples of other scents were popped into my ribboned bag, which was stuffed with scented tissue paper.

An even nicer end to this story is the lovely card I received in the post a few days later.


I’m very happy with the perfume. Dr P says he likes it. My Mum was less impressed. She said it was too strong, but I must admit I sprayed a lot on when I dressed for the wedding (see previous post). It’s a good quality perfume and doesn’t need as liberal an application as I gave. At £45 for 30ml it’s more than I’d usually spend but I think it will go a long way because of its intensity.

On reflection I like the scent, received great service and would definitely recommend a visit – if only for a little spray and sniff!

It is with an arched neck I say:

It’s only Vintage but I like it…

*Disclaimer – this was my own vintage adventure, I paid for all products reviewed!*

It’s only Frilly Chantilly but I like it!

I had a wedding to go to, as is so often in the case in the month of August. In fact we attended three this summer – two were for my sister’s ( nuptials and the other was my cousin Kate’s wedding. My cousin’s was a big family affair – all of my Dad’s extended family, so I wanted to look lovely and to show off my new vintage style. I needed a stunning summery dress and one night when I couldn’t sleep I had a trawl around all of the vintage clothing sites I know of. A new discovery that week had been and a quick browse there soon found me exactly what I had been looking for.

Their beautiful Garden Party dress comes in two lengths and is quite reasonably priced at £45. I loved the shape of it and went to bed that night dreaming of a big floral cloud of a dress! I imagined how striking I would look placed in the rolling, Welsh fields of my cousin’s wedding reception. It was definitely love at first sight!

It arrived promptly and, it embarrasses me to say it, but I am a massive sucker for nice packaging! This didn’t disappoint.

I loved the fact in came in a nice box and the ribbon has been stashed away to be repurposed!

I went for the longer length and was very happy with the quality of the dress. It was made from a nice weight cotton mix fabric. It had pretty lapel details to the front and purple buttons at the centre. I’m a new convert to the halter neck, having previously thought it wouldn’t work due to my capacious chest! It had a zip to the back which gave me some initial difficulties, due to me being at home alone when it arrived and not being able to do it up myself. I always wondered why ladies in black and white films got their husbands to do up their dresses. Now that I own some 1940s style dresses myself I can see why – these bad boys are fiendishly difficult to do up yourself! One simply must have a husband in order to make sure one goes out properly dressed! It’s about angles and forces and I’m sure there’s an equation out there somewhere which explains it better than I could. I was almost tearful from the frustration of not being able to zip up and try on my new dress. I even considered going out into the hall and asking the lift repairman who was hard at work there to ‘do me up’, but I was worried this sounded like an improper suggestion…

Underneath my dress I put an extra long white petticoat from  I accessorised the dress with a stretchy blue belt off eBay, a simple silver necklace, a purple bag, my Retro Peepers specs and of course, a slick of Besame lipstick…

On the actual day we were too busy drinking Pimms, eating canapés and catching up with long lost rellies to take any decent pictures it would seem. This is the only one I’m sharing!


Dr P and I took these for the purposes of illustration…



I won the (unofficial but coveted) ‘Best Shoes’ award from cousin Huw. Irregular Choice never let me down!


Many of Aunties ooh-ed and ahh-ed over the dress and told me tales of similar dresses they’d had in their youth. They loved the petticoat (I may have flashed it!) and said they hadn’t seen anything like it in years!


One lady guest I didn’t know asked my auntie to please introduce her to the-girl-in-the-50s-dress so she could ask me about it. Job done as far as I’m concerned!

Had a lovely day and the dress made me feel a million dollars. Will definitely head back to Frilly Chantilly next time I have an event.

It is with a fond, hazy summer memory I say:

It’s only vintage but I like it…

*All views expressed are my own and I paid for the items reviewed!*

It’s only Besame but I like it!

I absolutely must tell you about my day on Friday. I had a very nice, unexpected shopping trip in Southampton.

I had read on a Facebook group called ‘Southampton Vintage’ that a cosmetics company called Besame would be peddling their wares in West Quay shopping centre over Friday, Saturday and Sunday as part of their European launch. I had a quick google and was impressed to read the reviews – beautifully packaged vintage inspired cosmetics – whats not to like? I decided I must pop by for a look and though it might be an excuse to dress up a bit and have a go at a vintage hairstyle!

I watched a tutorial on youtube from Lisa Freemont ( ) as, it seems, this is the way to figure out these hairstyles. Lisa’s tutorial was perfect for me because she has short hair that is not cut in a traditional 1940s style, like myself. Anyway, I watched, I listened, I rolled, I pinned, I sprayed, I swore and I repeated a few times. But I have to say, it wasn’t as tricky as I’d thought and for someone like me, who is completely clueless, I was pretty pleased with the results!


I didn’t follow Lisa’s tutorial to the letter – she curled her hair first, but that’s something I have yet to figure out!

I added this dress from Nomads which I bought a couple of summers ago and headed into town.

I found Sharon Holloway (who I believe is one of the main UK stockists of Besame and is co-owner of VHL Emporium) and her lovely team in West Quay and had very quickly inveigled my way into their models chair where Sharon expertly applied some Cherry Red lipstick. I had been shown the range of red lipsticks (I’m a new convert to a bright red lippy!) and immediately adored this shade. Sharon applied it using a brush and gave my lips a lovely shape. She then surprised me by not giving me the hard sell but rather advised me to “Go have a wander round, pout in lots of mirrors and come back if you’d like to make a purchase”. How amazing, and so different to a recent experience where a very pushy assistant put a bag of make up in my hand and asked “Cash or card?” before they’d even finished their sales pitch!


You’ll be pleased to know I did exactly as I was advised and took these photos in a store changing room!


The texture of the lipstick was lovely and it smelt and tasted very natural – I remember buying cheaply made lipstick as a teenager and putting something that smells like swiftly rendered pig fat on my lips is not something I’ll repeat. Besame pride themselves on their use of natural ingredients – and boast that their mascara has just 7 ingredients! Not a claim many manufacturers could make, I’d wager…

Anyway, I wandered, I selfie’d, I purchased two beautifully printed tops and a delish perfume and then headed back to the Besame stand to claim my lippy. I had a quick chat about my blog and then paid a pretty reasonable £22 for my lovely cherry red lipstick. It comes in a lovely vintage style metal case, red velvet slipcase and pretty box. I’m a sucker for nice packaging and this doesn’t disappoint!


I must admit that after this I ate an ice lolly, a big salad and had a few snogs with Dr P when he got in and as you can see it hasn’t budged an inch!


If you’re interested in trying some products check the VHL website here for details:

I’m already planning new purchases and couldn’t be more delighted with this product.

It is with a shimmering lip line I say:

It’s only vintage but I like it…

*Disclaimer* I paid for these products and any views expressed are my own…

It’s only the UK but I like it…

I’m still stuck out here in the sandpit. But not for much longer! I fly home on Saturday and I can honestly say I cannot wait. Missing Dr P, a nasty virus and the admin hell I’ve been through trying to leave here, have left me tired, deflated, unsettled and mildly unhinged.


I want to to come back to the UK because it is home. Because it has history. Because more and more in the past few years we have come to value the things that went before. Traditions and crafts that our grandparents would have engaged in like knitting, sewing and making things out of other, knackered, things! I really value all ethic. I think it is good and real and wholesome and a stark contrast to the ‘Throw-it-away-and-buy-a-new-one’ culture out here.

I’m setting up home with Dr P and I am so looking forward to scouring car boot sales for the perfect vintage jug, or the perfect lamp stand. I want to make my own lampshades – there are like a bazillion tutorials out there, how hard can it be? I’m longing for two key items in my eventual home – a vintage record player and an upright piano. I own the piano, but it’s in Wales so it will be a journey in itself to reunite me with it but it’ll be worth it. As for the record player, I’ll have to do some research. I have a handful of vinyl I rescued from my Dad’s house and I look forward to listening to it in a new space. 


All of this could take some time. I’ll be in Dr P’s new build flat for the first few months and we’ll see what happens from there. But I’m excited and I’m moving in the right direction and that, I find, is always a good start.

It is with an excited flutter I say:

It’s only vintage but I like it…

It’s only Tala but I like it…

I have been short changing you, readers. I promised to give you the details of my vintage home and wardrobe and so far I’ve only provided 50% of that.

This is partly due to the fact that my current home is in the middle of the desert in Abu Dhabi and it’s a modern one bedroom flat. It doesn’t cry vintage. Also, given that I was pretty sure I’d only be here a short while, and the main reason for being here was to save money, I have not invested a huge amount in home furnishings. Just enough to make it feel homely – and most of that is from Ikea because home stores are not many and varied in the Middle East.

Still, I did once have a British home and I did grow up in the UK, so I am going to share with you one of my favourite kitchenware brands.

My Mum tells a story about being with my paternal grandmother one afternoon when I was baby. Mum was thinking out loud that she couldn’t decide what to give me for my tea and my Nan suggested jelly and disappeared off to the kitchen returning with these jelly moulds.

tala jelly moulds

I own these now. Mum has passed them on to me, still in their original packaging and there is something so special about them. I like that story. I like the fact they’ve been handed down through the generations. I like the fact that Tala has been producing kitchen staples since 1899. I have picked up various bits of vintage Tala from Car boot sales and the like, but I also love the retro items they have bought out in the last few years. A few lovely things have made their way into my Christmas stocking courtesy of my Mum. I love the idea that one day I might pass them on to my daughter or granddaughter.

I’m moving in with DrP when I move back to the UK in July and in an attempt to improve his woefully resourced kitchen I treated myself to a few online purchases recently. I’d always wanted one of these and now I have one!

tala measure

It is with a nostalgic look I say:


It’s only vintage but I like it…


Oh, and: That cute Collectif dress? Here’s a video of me singing whilst wearing it. It looks stunning. I won’t tell you the sad of story how I ruined it in the washing machine after just 2 wears 😦