One dress – so many styles

Shooting Juli 17 mit Jörn und Ken-002English [see German version down below]

Recently I saw the beautiful Curstie Marie a.k.a Miss Vintage Lady in Stop Staring’s ‚Dori dress‘ . As I am recently looking for teaching appropriate vintage inspired styles it caught my eye immediately. The dress was $165.00and is now on sale for $129.00. Sadly too much for my still tight student budget, because I’m also saving up for a large thigh tattoo this autumn. Luckily, my significant other found this dress for less than 50€ on eBay and for less than 75€ with shipping and customs it was mine. This dress is really well made from a high quality, soft but thicker grey fabric flocked with black micro dots. What I also love about this dress is the rounded square neckline with the generous bow above the the bust. The princess cut makes it fitted at the torso, while the wide swishy skirt enables free movement. It’s great for uni just by itself, for a date paired with a cute hair bow, for a formal or business occasion with a nice tailored blazer, for a rock concert or car show with a biker jacket and bandana or with a boater hat for chilling by the sea side. Enjoy the photos I took at my latest photoshoot with Ken and Jörn and feel free to leave more suggestions for styling this versatile little number.

 

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photocredit: Jörn Schimmelpfeng Artful Photography

 

IMG05667 by Ken

by Ken W. Photo

Deutsch:

 

Nachdem ich nun am Übergang zwischen Studium und Arbeitswelt bin, sehe ich mich immer mehr nach unterrichtstauglichen Kleidungsstücken um. Dabei fiel mir vor einer Weile das „Dori“ KLeif von Stop Staring and der bezaubernden Curstie Marie [@missvintagelady] auf Instagram auf. Es hat einen moderaten, gerundeten Ausschnitt mit großzügiger Schleife, einen gut sitzenden Prinzessinnen-Schnitt am Torso und einen angenehmen weiten Rock. Da das Kleid zwar im Sale, aber noch immer außerhalb meines zur Zeit engen Budgets war, habe ich auf eBay geschaut und mein Freund hat mir tatsächlich dieses Kleid neu mit Zetteln für weniger als 75€ inklusive Versand und Zoll aus den USA ergattert. Seither hab ich es auch schon mehrfach zu den verschiedensten Anlässen ausgeführt, da es unfassbar vielseitig ist. Mit einer Haarblume zum Date, mit Lederjacke für ein Konzert oder eine Oltimer Show, mit Blazer für ein Prüfungsgespräch, mit Strohhut für den Tag am See -die Kombinationsmöglichkeiten sind dank des neutralen grau mit den geflockten Micro-Polkadots endlos. Schaut euch gerne die Bilder von meinem letzten Fotoshooting mit Jörn Schimmelpfeng und Ken Werner an und hinterlasst mir gerne auch noch mehr Ideen was ihr zu Dori kombinieren würdet.

 

Shooting Juli 17 mit Jörn und Ken

picture 1-3 by Ken W., picture 4 by Jörn Schimmelpfeng. Biker jacket by Collectif, 

 

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Mary Poppins would love this, too. This is maybe my favourite picture ever.

 

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The pretty boater hat is by Malonsilla from Spain, earrings are made by our very own pinup flatmate Sush.

 

 

 

 

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Teal’s the deal

Have you met Yvonne? Yvonne is a long favorite of mine. This dress is a double breasted style in rich teal with gingham trimming along the collar and end of the sleeves. It feels nice on the skin, the fabric flows beautifully and creates a smooth silhouette. The main material of this dress is polyester, however, due to its crêpe-ish texture I did not experience any sweat issues ever. Other bonus points in my book are the longer sleeves [which are not tight so you have full movement and you are protected from sun burn] and the elegant neckline which does not need any fancy bra solution to be pulled off. This is the perfect dress  for days when you have to hurry in the morning or you know that you need comfort and full range of movement. To make this clear: you can wear granny panties and your oldest comfiest bra and you can see no lines, frayed bra straps or trimmings of full cups. It is totally office and teaching appropriate. For pale people like me who shy away from colours this is a very pleasing shade, a subtle touch of colour that won’t make you look washed out as many lighter colours do. I also own the WIlhelmina dress in the same shade and fabric for my winter wardrobe. The Yvonne dress was brought back as the Yvonne Hanna Check Trim Swing Dress in black with a tartan trim. I hope for more colourways to come, a dark plum with a gingham collar would be great, right?

What is your „comfy as pj’s“ go to dress?

xoxo,

Katha

 

 

 

A vintage girl’s careguide to phantasy hair

I’ve had my fair share of different hair colours in the last three years. I started out with blue highlights and then went crazy on the colour wheel. However, from the beginning I was a bit worried about destroying my hair, about having to cut off the last inches faster then my roots grows back. Wet sets and pin curling with my curling iron does not make it easier for my hair to stay healthy, but I managed to keep a few rules that helped me a great deal.

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I’ve had my fair share of different colours in the last three years: blue, purple, orange and Pink highlights, red and burgundy all over, rainbow etc.

 

  1. Avoid bleach – Yes, I do bleach parts of my hair and I do it myself as someone who is not trained as a hair stylist. I have colourful underlights and one colourful strand of hair at my forehead. Although nobody likes out grown roots I try to wait until they are at least half an inch. When I used box dye bleaches my hair was brittle, prone to breaking and I got a lot of split ends. Now I use the Directions White Fire Kit which a) saves me a lot of money because I can mix just so much as I need and keep the rest for later. According to my Amazon history my current kit was bought mid August last year and there are still some touch up uses left in it! If you need to remove colour that turned out wrong try a good cleansing shampoo (I use Paul Mitchell Shampoo Three -Cleanse which is also cruelty free and vegan!) or a more gentle bleach wash.

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    Here you see how you want your roots to be outgrown before bleaching, my bleached roots and the result. Don’t bleach a part twice (hence the blue lengths).

  2. Avoid heat. This is really a no brainer, right? We all know that heat is drying and damaging to hair and even more to hair that is already treated with bleach and colour. I usually just towel dry, detangle, separate my front part to make a roll and put the rest of my hair up in a messy bun over night. Then again, I have naturally curly hair and can get away with unpolished curls and waves and a suicide roll when I put a headscarf on.
  3. Detangle gently. As those of you with curls may know (and here it is no difference if you are blessed with natural curls, have a perm oder do your weekly wet set like my grandmother does) there will be tangles. If you tease your roots to get volume and stability for your victory rolls there will be tangles. Anyhow to solve this mess tangle teasers are great. Start brushing out from the ends of your hair. I start with holding my hair 4-5 inches before the ends and brush the last inches, when those are detangled I grab my hair a few inches from the roots and brush from there downwards again. Only when I’m finished with that I brush through the full length of my hair.  The reason behind that is that when you start brushing through the full length of you hair you will accumulate all the tangles and knots on your head at the bottom and loose knots will be pulled tight when you move them a few inches down and will therefore be harder to detangle. When your hair tends to be dry in the lengths it will also be more prone to get knotty. A good oil which is sold to prevent split ends might also help you – I use the excess of my hand creme (Lemony Flutter by Lush) for that purpose.

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    Don’t let unwanted knots take a chance! You can also see here that it is possible to dye your hair and grow it longer.

  4. Use gentle shampoo and nourishing conditioners. I heard a lot of girls with phantasy coloured hair use baby shampoo to give their hair a mild cleanse which is also gentle on the colour. For me that does not work it is in fact the only thing that will give me horribly greasy hair. What I also find to be not optimal is slapping a whole scoop of shampoo (however good) on your scalp. That will result in your roots fading out a lot faster then your lengths and might irritate your scalp as well. I use a travel size bottle for cosmetics, put my shampoo in dissolve it with two times more water, shake it gently so it mixes without being all bubbles and then pour it over my hair evenly, massage everything briefly in and rinse it off. However, trying to not strip your hair from colour and oils is only half the deal -you have to nourish it as well. I like to put in leave in treatments over night, do hair masks and hot oil treatments (those only when the colour is already faded). I personally prefer natural treatments which are either home made or from Lush, but every hair is different and you need to find what is right for your hair type.
  5. Updos and braids are your friend. Did you know that when you wear your hair down a lot chances are it will be more damaged? When your hair is shoulder lever its tips will bump on your neck and shoulders constantly and the mechanic strain will cause them to get damaged, split and break eventually. If your hair is longer it will likely get caught in your jacket, your handbags shoulder strap or your backpack. These things will rub and pull on your hair, put pressure on it or scratch the surface of your hair. Once damaged other hair is more likely to get caught up in the damaged hairs and when trying to brush out your knots the damage can work its way up with every tug. To keep my hair in pace I do up dos quite often and braid my hair for the night. That way each hair is nicely in line and can’t get caught in spaces it is not supposed to be. To prevent ends sticking out of your braids (be it baby hair or layers) you can use pomade [e.g.: Suavecita) to gloss the strands over before you braid or a thick hand creme. In winter I sometimes also use coconut oil, but if you live in a warmer climate this will melt too easily and might even smell rancid after a while. If you are interested I can do a look book on braid styles and how to make them look more vintage.Markierte Fotos

„Beauty is pain“, or: Sneezing in a corset

„Beauty is pain“, or as we Germans say it „Wer schön sein will muss leiden“ (who wants to be pretty, has to suffer [in order to get there]) is a saying we have all heard or said at least once in our lives, I guess. I do have a very special relationship to this line, because I have  scoliosis. That means my spine is curved and twisted in ways it is not supposed to be. When I was a young teenager I had a hunchback (I refuse to say I was or am a hunchback, as this is not the defining feature of my personality). To set the matter, and my spine, straight I had to wear an orthopaedic corset or, as they are often referred to, „backbraces„. This thing is neither comfy nor pretty, but I am eternally grateful that this therapy was available to me, because although those were three and a half very painful years in which I had to wear this corset for 23,5h each day -it saved me a lot of trouble with health issues in the long run. I am not sure if you can understand how emotionally attached you can become to such a torture device. It was a dark time and as a teenager health issues that may impact the rest of your life are nothing you take lightly. However, this corset provided a routine and a hug that was so tight it hurt. Nontheless, it was a hug, a reassuring feeling to be held save. When I was fully grown I was allowed to gradually reduce the hours I was wearing it while upping my exercise to strengthen my muscles to keep the results of my therapy in shipshape. That meant I could spend my days feely and then return to my corset’s firm hug for the evening and night. Then it was time to say goodbye completely.

I value the opportunities I was given by this therapy. So when I went to London for my semester abroad I took the opportunity to go to the What Katie Did Boutique in Portobello Road to get myself a good steel boned corset. My first „real“ corset was their Morticia underbust corset in peach. Before that I have owned a really cheap and dodgy black underbust fashion corset. It gave my a really tubular shape and was really bendy. Morticia is so different to that. First off, she is made for hourglass figures like mine: she cinches the waist nicely without pinching my hips while leaving enough room for my ribcage so I can breath comfortably. The best part about her is she helps me with my back pains when I have to work long hours on my essays fand papers for university. Usually, I try to sit straight at my desk, sucking my out-sticking shoulder in and trying to balance the way my spine bends, but that gives me cramps after a few hours which result in a migraine. Not really a glamorous situation. When wearing my corset I can give the responsibility for my posture to Morticia for a while, she keeps me straight up on the outside while I relax on the inside and focus my potential on my tasks. The only time the beauty of having killer curves and the posture of a ballerina while going about my life is when I have to sneeze, because even the comfiest corset is restricting your torso in some way.

Over the years I added two more steel boned corsets: a What Katie did Antoinette halfbust corset which I wore to a lot of parties and last year’s Halloween photoshoot with my boyfriend. I chose the Antoinette a size bigger than my usual corset size, because when trying to lace the back up evenly the bust part would have been a problem in the 20″ version. My most recent addition to the collection is from Revanche de la Femme, a German corsetier. It is a beautiful black waspie with the prettiest baroque velvet flock print and which creates a really extreme silhouette. In the picture collage below you can see the different shapes those corsets help me achieve, especially in comparison to the cheap alternative I started out with. I have to admit that while in hospital to get my scoliosis sorted out my young mind was trained well in seeing my imperfections in order to correct them. Unfortunately once you see something you cannot unsee it and for years I was mortified that everyone else saw how broken I am, too. Actually, that is what I love so much about pinup and vintage culture: I am not pretty or healthy by nature, but I can mold and shape the image I present to the world, and there is no better thing to mold and shape that image (at least to me) then a corset. Noone notices the troubles I want to keep private when I use my little distraction tactic aka killer curves and I can go about with my live untroubled and pain free. Weird how backbraces did not only shape my back, but also my life and made me a corset and vintage lover.

What is your corset story? Have you found your perfect match yet or is it still a painful journey? And to all you with scoliosis out there: please consult your doctor first before trying a corset as a fix for your back pain.

Love,

Katha

Korsette Vergleich corset comparison WKD Revanche de la femme

Mix and match pieces: The Vixen top

English:

If you have been around with us for a bit you know that I am still a student and Sush just entered the work force, so we are all about keeping within budget. Yes soup and noodles are always an option, but it is hard to be glamorous and gracious when you are starving. So here comes our fist mix’n’match basic pieces for pinups on a budget. The Vixen top is from Vixen by Micheline Pitt and is 46,74€ +13,47€ shipping to Germany when ordered directly on her Etsy-site and 64,96€ with no shipping fees when ordered via TopVintage. Yes, that sounds expensive, but the quality is amazing and if you keep your eyes open there is a Sale every now and then when you can catch Micheline’s creations for a bargain.

As you can see in the pictures below these tops can be styled with a flirty circle skirt for a date or a stroll on the park, but also with jeans for a casual day at home or under a pencil dress for an office ready style. I think they also look bad ass with a cropped biker jacket with some lapel pins. Tucked in or worn over your bottoms both ways look great and open the range of possibilities even wider. What ever you do these soft, comfy, zipper-free tops are a perfect companion for all walks of life.

Deutsch:

Für diejenigen, die unseren Blog schone eine Weile verfolgen, ist es nichts neues, dass wir beide diesen Blog als Studentinnen begonnen haben. Sush hat erst kürzlich ihr Masterzeugnis erhalten und angefangen zu arbeiten, während ich für das Staatsexamen in meinem Zweitfach pauke. Daher sind wir immer sehr auf unser Budget bedacht. Klar kann man sich am Ende des Monats von Tütensuppen ernähren, aber das will doch niemand. Wir achten darum immer darauf in vielseitige Dinge zu investieren. Das Vixen Top von ‚Vixen by Micheline Pitt‘ ist so ein vielseitiges Teil. Von Micheline’s Etsy-Seite kann man die Tops für 46,74€ plus 13,47€ Versand bestellen und bisher wurden alle Päckchen von ihr ohne Aufpreis durch den Zoll gewunken. Wem europäische Händler (allein schon wegen einem eventuellen Umtausch) lieber sind: es gibt die Teile auch bei TopVintage für 64,95€ und gratis Versand. Das klingt happig, aber die in den USA handgemachten Tops sind von toller Qualität und wenn ihr geduldig wartet kommt immer mal wieder ein Sale bei dem sich wahnsinnige Schnäppchen schießen lassen.

In den Bildern unten habe ich mal mögliche Styles zusammengetragen. Das Top lässt sich super sowohl mit einem taillenhohen Rock darüber als auch über einer Jeans tragen. Zudem kann es von flirty, über lässig, bis hin zum Business-Style soziemlich alles sein, worauf du grade lust hast. Durch die tolle Qualität von Stoff und Schnitt braucht es zudem keine kratzenden Reisverschlüsse um seine Form zu behalten wie es bei vielen anderen Vintage-Repro-Marken Standard ist.

 

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Red Vixen top paired with

or

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Baby pink Vixen top paired with:

or

or

 

As you see you get a lot of wear out of these tops which in my opinion saves you money because you need to buy less to build a solid wardrobe when you have quality versatile pieces in it.

 

Wie Ihr seht sind die Tops tatsächlich sehr vielseitig einsetzbar und sparen einem, meiner Meinung nach zumindest, auf diese Weise Geld, da man nicht noch hundert andere Tops speziell für den einen oder anderen Zweck braucht, wenn man ein paar gute wandelbare Teile im Schrank hat.

 

Love,

Katha

P.S.: This post is totally #notsponsored -but just to let the fangirl in me out for a second: look who commented on my picture!

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Wild for Erstwilder

For years I wore brooches I got from my grandma and her sisters – cheap vintage brooches they didn’t wear any more. Then about three years ago some quirky resin brooches I saw on other pin-up style loving ladies caught my eye and they were from Erstwilder. About December 2015 I got my first piece: Curling Cassandra. In the meantime I got some more pieces from various stockists. So I thought I would give you a brief overview about prices, shipping and selections available. There are, of course, more stockists of Erstwilder in the UK and around the globe which I am looking forward to check out. However, for now these are the ones I have experience with shopping at.

TopVintage

price per brooch:28,95€ –no additional customs for EU citizens

ultra fast and free shipping available for Germany and other EU countries

carefully packed with bag and sent in a parcel

small selection of styles

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Erstwilder

price per brooch 34,95 AUD

price for the ear rings: 29,94 AUD

free shipping for international orders over $150 and national orders over $80 (delivery between 2-7 business days, fully tracked), layby option available! Shipped in a sturdy, but cutesy parcel.

Lastest styles and greatest selection.

Customs and federal taxes will be charged by your country upon delivery.

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Daisy Park

price per brooch £23 (does have a Sale section though where bargains can be made)

Shipping to Germany is £4,95 -no customs or taxes added when ordering from another EU country.

Great selection of current or generally speaking newer styles.

Comes with a nice personalized note

 

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Glitterally UK

price per brooch £23

Shipping to Germany £3,95 – no customs or taxes added for EU customers

Great selection of styles

Comes in a bubble wrap envelope with a little handwritten note.

GREAT customer services. My order had to be broken up since the ‚Treasure Within‘ brooch was sold out pretty soon and Glitterally put it in as a pre-order option for their next stock-up. They sent me e-mails as soon as they noticed there had been a glitch and some customers were not able to see that this was only pre-order and would take a time to arrive. I was updated through out the process and got the ‚Tulip Bouquet‘ immediately while they sent the ‚Treasure Within‘ to me as soon as they got their stock and free of additional charge for the added postage and shipping, too. Really pleased with the experience!

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They just make everything look more put together and it’s so much fun choosing which one to wear in the morning. It really mixes things up if you are used to vintage ones 🙂

Let me know which stockists you love to shop with!

xoxo,

Katha

P.S.: if you want to enter Erstwilder’s give-away to win vouchers or 10 brooches of your choice klick the link below!

http://lp.megaphonemarketing.com.au/erstwilder-feb17?kid=E23N0

 

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I wore my ‚Seasonal Symmetry‘ for a photoshoot earlier this year and it sat on my coat basically all winter.