Wednesday, 26 September 2012

My Current Inspiration: Annie

Though I have a fairly whimsical, often eccentric wardrobe, I have found myself leaning more and more towards simpler styling. This really is due to the effortlessly cool Annie who plays bass in my band Screaming Maldini. She often gets compared to Zooey Deschanel with her thick brunette locks and blunt fringe, gorgeous eyes and cheeky smile! Though we are inspired by celebrity, magazines, blogs, music and history I think we are often most inspired by those around us.

The word "effortless" really sums up Annie's style. She turns up to most social engagements looking perfectly put together, yet completely natural and never over-styled. Annie knows what suits her but more importantly she knows what she likes and has unapologetically created a theme within her wardrobe. Especially with colours and tailoring. Annie is often in Zara and Topshop and that little leather jacket is from Mango.

Asking Annie what she's going to wear before a night out or before a gig is a common occurance! Though our styles are completely different, I always find it helpful to know what she's donning. Here are a few things that Annie has taught me:

  • A statement necklace (or 5) is the ideal addition to your accessory collection as it finishes an outift in seconds. Preferably in gold. 
  • Red lipstick can transform an ensemble from "I've just finished work" to "I'm on the rum!"
  • Don't be scared of white shirts and buttoning them up to the collar.
  • Simple works.
  • Fashion doesn't have to be uncomfortable to look good.
  • Stick to what you know suits you.

With this style in mind, I asked Annie to model for my first ASOS Marketplace collection. These two items looked so right on her, they sold in days and no wonder, she makes them look so wearable. That's what my collection is about, making vintage work for anybody. 

She's not only a savvy fashionista, Annie is a wonderful friend and a talented musician. She should really have her own fashion blog really! I wish I knew how to put an outfit together like this girl, I really do. In the mean time, I'll just make fabulous tunes on stage with her. 


Monday, 24 September 2012

The Vintage Fair

Recently my blog has taken a bit of a back seat as I've been working and blogging for The Vintage Fair. A very good reason for taking a back seat! I just thought I'd give you a little update, show you some photos and stuff.  Have a nose at the blog why don't you! Go on...!

It usually starts with a Friday night drive to whichever city we are in the following day or an early Saturday morning drive. That's a lie actually, it really starts with "What do I wear? What era am I vibing today?" and "Where is my red lipstick?"

After saying hello to all of our traders, setting up the room, the front desk and the music, we open the doors at 12 to greet the eager vintage lovers. For the next 5 hours, we eat cake, drink tea, take photos and try not to buy everything. It's a good life. Here are a few snaps...

Hopefully I will see you at one of our fairs in the near future. We are in Sheffield this Saturday and York this Sunday.

Monday, 17 September 2012

The Bright Young Twins

"I think me and Harriet lead lives that people wouldn't expect us to..."

Photo: Katie Holt

The The Bright Young Twins are Harriet and Aimee; two young beautiful women who describe themselves as "vintage creeps with questionable tastes". You can probably understand already, having looked at the image above and read this brief introduction, as to why I wanted to talk to these girls!

How did it all start?
H: It was your idea!
A: I suppose it was my idea, but we've both been reading blogs for some time and I thought 'come on let's do it!' We just decided that, we wear a lot of outfits anyway and since we read so many blogs we figured by writing our own we could 'give something back'. 
H: We took so much inspiration from the people we followed on the internet that we felt we could inspire other people to do what those people did for us.

Are there any blogs in particular that you regularly read?
H: Confessions Of A Female Drag Queen has to be our favourite, (A: Oh yeah we love that girl!) Stella Rose is just amazing. 
A: Oh and Fashion Forestry and Hannah and Landon are two blogs we love. But the blogs we read have dramatically changed over the past two years. We just read so many! Ooh! Fairy Fay has just launched her blog, she's our housemate and has this gorgeous 60s Rolling-Stones-girlfriend thing going on with her long hair, she's really cool.

Did you expect Bright Young Twins to take off like it has? You have 991 blog followers!
A: I know! I don't think either of us expected it to take off no, the first three months were just like, our mums, nans and friends reading it!
H: I nearly gave up, it got to the point where I felt we were giving and giving and getting nothing back. The whole point was to share stuff and we weren't getting the feedback, I'd wear an outfit and then think "what's the point in photographing it if nobody's going to appreciate it?" But then we got featured on the Swedish blog Miriam Kafferep and on Casey's Elegant Musings and it just went from there. 
A: We also started going to parties like Blitz Party and the Chap Ball where we met other established bloggers like Fleur De Guerre which we were really chuffed about as she said she read our blog.

I don't see your blog as a "fashion blog" as you offer so much of yourselves to your readers. Was this a conscious effort?
H: Originally we were very much hoping to make the blog about historical garments and dating particular pieces and in depth posts on vintage styles but nobody read those posts! (But you can still find those in our archive). We looked at the blogs we read and why we like reading them and it's because they are about that person as much as they are about the clothes they wear. 
A: Definitely, like I think Harriet's right when she says there's an element of voyeurism with blogs. I think me and Harriet lead lives that people wouldn't expect us to. 
H: People seem to expect us to live a certain way, not to swear and be good girls! but we are not trying to re-live a certain decade. We just want to show how passionate we are about the fashions from those eras and how that fits into our very modern lives. 
A: We are very much feminists and that's something we wanted to stress in our blog. People have this idea that women who wear vintage are expected to carry the morals along with that time, which is ridiculous!

Do you think living in London gives you a greater freedom to dress the way you do?
H: I think I would dress this way no matter where I lived, but I love this city. It has an impact due to the fact we have access to so much more. 
A: There's never a point where we would change our style to suit our surroundings, we dress the same no matter where we go. 

Give us some London tips, shops, drinking or otherwise.
H: We love Spitalfields on a Thursday. It's definitely our favourite place to shop. We love charity shops but if we told you our favourite charity shops then we wouldn't get all the best stuff! And Paper Dress too - clothes and booze! 
A: We love bad bars. The irony is coming out now! We just love how the weirdest people would try and chat us up. But now we love Harriet's flat. 

Harriet, you and flowers! When are these gorgeous floral hair pieces going to be available to buy?
H: ...definitely by Spring next year?! I've just started working in a florists' so it's pretty tiring getting up at 5am everyday but yeah, I love flowers. I'm just lazy!
A: That's exactly it! People follow us more for Harriet's style, but if it wasn't for me then the posts wouldn't even happen! 

Aimee, congrats on graduating in English Literature! Has that been a big inspiration for your style?
A: I would say so, yes. I only started wearing dark red lipstick because of all the women in Dracula with their big plush lips not because of the magazines! 

Dressing certain ways attracts attention. Have you found this and how do you react to the extra attention?
H: In Berlin a couple of years ago, we were stood next to the Brandenburg gate and people were taking pictures of us instead of the famous monument right next to us! We were like, "It's over there!" 
A: It's not very nice. Harriet hates it and I don't like it very much either. 
H: I have a strong opinion on the whole thing. Why can't people leave each other alone? I'm not a freak show. I may think that I think somebody dresses awfully but never in a million years would I think I had the right to tell them! 
A: I suppose on the other hand, I've just come to expect it and accept it. You just have to deal with it.
H: I actually feel sorry for people. It's like, my hat is blowing your mind right now, it's a hat!

It was an absolute pleasure to meet the Bright Young Twinskeep up to date with all of their latest posts as they get up to goodness knows what wearing goodness knows what! 

Gina x

Monday, 10 September 2012

Shoreditch Vintage Fair: Revival

I stupidly treated myself to this dress from Revival Vintage and their unit in The Nichols' Building (where I have just updated my Pretty Used Things unit! £5 bargains I tell you!). I wore this for The Shoreditch
Vintage Fair on Saturday. 

I'm trying to develop more of a 60s vibe and this dress just fits perfectly, though I have put on a few pounds recently - boo hiss. It has a gorgeous quilted rolled collar and a striking graphic print. I'm thinking late 60s for the era. The unit is actually having a 15% off sale so this baby only cost me a nifty £17. Now what do I keep saying eh? That The Nichols Building has the best selection of vintage in Sheffield? Well here is some proof!

G x

Saturday, 8 September 2012

Miss Paisley's Guest Post

May I introduce Lauren Paisley, one of the coolest Cumbrian chicks around with an awesome wardrobe to match...

Here it is the first blog takeover and I have the joy of posting for Pretty Used Things as a guest. First off introductions, my name’s Lauren I met Gina back in Sheffield studying music together and I am a fellow BGFL!

Now then, it’s taken me weeks to think of something interesting to write but putting finger to laptop and being lazy on a Sunday morning it hit me. I was reading a magazine and the journalist was attending her daughter’s graduation. Whilst proudly watching the young’uns receiving their certificates she noticed how all the girls were all the same, and how everything about the girls was fake! Same fake nails, same fake hair and the same fake baaaaad tan and this got me thinking….how my BGFL girls are all unique and individual in terms of style and character and I just want to tell you how all four of them are bloody amazing, not only for getting me through our crazy Bulgarian holiday but for being strong, unique and individual gals.


The little Geordie blonde bomb shell, “she’s got a banging body with the banter to match”. She never ceases to amaze me not only with whatever comes out of her potty mouth but with whatever she’s wearing next. She’s the smallest person I know and anything she wears always looks good….well…. apart from her newest purchase…that PIMP jacket. Enough said the better (only joking Kate!).  On another note I don’t know where she gets her energy from; I love her style and I love her banter never stop being crazy babz!


Lucy is a beautiful confident babe who has a complete heart of gold! Her party trick is the boob dance, which after many attempts is harder than it looks! The ultimate PS (party starter) she’ll light up any room and her style is always effortless and creative. A recent newbie to the blonde side after being a brunette for so long she makes whatever she wears her own…often with an owl or hedgehog accessory or two.


As the lady who takes the most time in our group to get ready I think she has had the biggest change since our fresher uni days and she is looking FIT. From her hair (the chicken bum!) to halving the time she takes to get ready she has really found her own style. A Manchester girl born and bred she is the mother hen of the group, a strong, fierce lady who knows her mind. I know she’ll never believe me but she has got cracking pins and Barry and Paul are the best pair in the group! Enough said.

 And finally….


I’m so glad I’ve met Gina, she’s always full of inspiration and underneath all the self doubt (that I bet all of us have) there is a feisty and fun lady in there. I’m in awe of her sense of style and drive to create her vintage empire. She has an amazing sense of style and a wicked character (the stories from Bulgaria are classic) and we’ll definitely laugh about them one day ey Gina! Never stop being a babe Gina!

So to my BGFL girls until the next time don’t stop being you! You make me smile every time I see you all. Hopefully our next holiday will be just as classic and crazy as Bulgaria, and our style will have evolved into something new and unique!


Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Hey Sholay VS New Cape

Now I've been shopping quite a bit recently. God knows why as I'm fairly skint, but that's the nature of obsession I suppose. This wool cape is gorgeous, I bought it from a charity shop who "do vintage" so it was a little more expensive than your usual charity purchase, but I'm OK with it. I'd rather spend £XX in St Luke's than in Topshop. I think it's probabaly late 60s early 70s but please, correct me if I'm wrong.

 Cape: St Luke's
Bag: Totally forgotten.
Shoes: Office
Dress: Tesco (I know right?)

I wore this outfit last night to go to the Hey Sholay "Wishbone" ale launch at The Harlequin pub in Sheffield. Nifty idea that, making an ale for your album launch. In fact, the boys are off on tour soon and you should definitely go see them live. Not only are they bursting with energy, charisma and good songs, they're also dead fit. Cash back.

Pre-order their album here.