Adventures

Join my adventures! This is your ticket to ride along to events, shows and travel with me.

Devel Branded Fashion Show | 1960’s Inspired Fashion

Devel Branded Fashion Show | 1960’s Inspired Fashion

Badass boss babe is kinda my style motto right now, so it’s no surprise that Danielle from Devel Branded is one of my favourite local designers.  Not only is she freakin’ adorable, but her clothes embody the sass and vibrancy that a modern pinup needs. I had a ball strutting in her catwalk show last weekend alongside the coolest girl gang a pinup could hope for.

The show featured garments from her Freshly Squeezed, Poolside and Sprinkles & Cream collections, as well as the luxe Tuxedo Dress and the Black Widow skirt that had me swooning! ( Seriously is it not the most killer goth – meets – vintage skirt you’ve ever seen?! )

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Thanks to Glory Days and Auckland Live for putting on Summer in The Square Vintage Weekend, it was a blast!

Sassily yours,

                  Velvet

 

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Novelty Gumboot Review (Plus my top picks for Spring)

Novelty Gumboot Review (Plus my top picks for Spring)

novelty gumboots for spring | Velvet DeCollete

Rainy weather really gets me down. The roiling grey sky, the mud, the darkness; it’s just not my thing. Choosing cute gumboots over a purely utilitarian style helps brighten the days and get me through til summer. Since the demise of my beloved leopard print wellies I’ve been looking and I’ve finally found a replacement! Echo and I headed over to Victoria Battery to try them out.

Before we go any further I just want to say That I’m not paid, endorsed or sponsored in this review. I just get super excited about shoes and want to share my joy!

I found these gumboots at The Warehouse. They’re a size 5 wide. ( Which is perfect because while small, my feet have spread from going barefoot every summer!)  The navy blue creates a nice background for the fabulously bright shabby chic-ish floral print and the construction seems nice and solid. Echo had a nibble on the top of one but didn’t manage to do any damage. For $29 I honestly don’t think you could do better.

novelty gumboots for spring | Velvet DeColletenovelty gumboots for spring | Velvet DeColletenovelty gumboots for spring | Velvet DeColleteThe battery is the old ruin of a historic ore processing plant. It’s currently flooded after fourteen straight days of rain and Echo is LOVING it. Having her own private lake kinda makes up for us moving away from the beach – at least for now.

novelty gumboots for spring | Velvet DeCollete

There’s no good reason for boring footwear, so here’s a few of my favourite printed gumboots to inspire you! Priced between $30 and $90 (and with mine now on sale at The Warehouse online for $12.98!) there’s a wellie for every budget.

watermelon-print-gumboots | Velvet Decolleteleopard-print-gumboots | Velvet DeCollete

pug-printed-gumboots | Velvet DeColletetropical-print-gumboots | Velvet Decollete

 

 

Muddily yours,

                           Velvet

 

 

 

 

 

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My Top 5 Shopping Day Essentials

We’re busy people. I know your days off are rarer than Louboutins in an op shop. You need to make the most of them, especially when it comes to a hard earned shopping junket.

In a sprawling city like Auckland planning for a successful shopping trip is key. Be unprepared and you could end up heading home in rush hour with a blister, a hungry tummy and three tops you found on sale that you’ll never wear. No one deserves that. Years of experience have left me a shopping mission tactician and here are my top five essentials for shopping like a boss lady.

1. The right clothes.

You’ll need to try things on, so wear something easy to get off (put down the skinny jeans!). Buying off the hanger isn’t reliable when fit and styles vary between new, vintage and store to store. Besides, some of the most flattering things I own looked average on the hanger. Oh, and slip on shoes will save you so much time.

2. A plan.

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Scope out all the shops you want to visit and plan or GPS the most effective route. Remember to avoid busy areas in peak traffic times! I always start at the store furthest from home: it’s one I’m less likely to get to another day and I like being near to home when I’m tired at the end.

3. Water and snacks.

Packing water and snacks means you won’t make unplanned stops because you’re getting grumpy from hunger or dehydration. It’s also cheaper. You want to be spending your hard earned cash on shopping, not food!

4. A bag with a strap.

You’ll need both hands free for flicking through those racks or carrying bolts of fabric. Trust me.

5. A list.

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Making a list of desired items will keep you on track, ensuring you stay focused on what you want or need – not what you just saw on sale. Getting home to realise you forgot the one thing you really needed is a major face-palm moment. Your face is nice, so let’s not palm it.

Now you have the secrets to world shopping domination, go forth and  plan a retail therapy adventure! ( Then show me what you bought, I want to seeeeeeee.)

May the thrifting gods be with you,

                                  Velvet x

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Very Vintage Day Out 2016 | Photo Safari & Outfit Review

Very Vintage Day Out 2016 | Photo Safari & Outfit Review

Apologies on the delayed VVDO post, I’ve been focused so completely on producing the Blue Moon Ball everything else just slipped away. So here, delayed but not forgotten, is a brief outfit review and photo safari images…

In true VVDO tradition the photo safari was organised chaos! Photographers and models vied for unobstructed backgrounds and cars that matched their outfits. There were giggles and goofs as huge petticoats invaded photos and photographers backed into each other – but in the end there were wonderful photographs.

Velvet Decollete vintage style VVDO 16 | David Watson

Velvet Decollete vintage style VVDO 16 | David Watson

When choosing this years ensemble I looked for a contrast to last years dark dress and makeup. Itcame in the form of a glorious blue lurex dress hanging in Tock Tick Vintage. Ensnared by its sparkle and texture I had to try it on, and immediately fell in love with how the modest cut contrasted with the showiness of the fabric. La Vonne found a pillbox hat  close enough in colour to match so both came home with me!

Inspired by the clean, coordinated style of Jackie Onassis I chose white accessories to keep the blue dress in the limelight, and pantihose over stockings as a nod to their huge popularity upon commercial release in the early 1960’s.

Outfit Breakdown

Dress, hat + brooch | All Vintage from Tock Tick Vintage 
Petticoat + Glomesh bag | Vintage op shop finds
Shoes + vintage gloves  | Borrowed from my mother
Belt | Forever New
Sunglasses + vintage earrings | Gifted
Columbine Pantihose | Farmers

Velvet Decollete vintage style VVDO 16 | Shifting Light Photography

Here’s some snaps of me walking in the Authentic Vintage category finals of the Best Dressed competition ( photos by Norrie Montgomery) . This is always so much fun and there are some simply amazing outfits on show. I’m in awe of Miss Lorelei Louise’s sorbet coloured ensemble you can see in the background!

I had such an awful morning with contact lens and eyeliner horrors I feel my makeup wasn’t my best work, I’m just glad I managed to get myself together in time! Do any other pinups struggle with the glasses vs contact lenses debate? My daily glasses aren’t retro styled and my milk bottle lenses are far too expensive to buy an extra pair for pinup . As a result I feel obliged to wear contact lenses even though they irritate my eyes something awful.

The highlight of my day was (as always) the food. Miss Charlotte Cake had the most scrumptious little cakes that looked every bit as delightful as they tasted, while The Tea Ladies put on a much needed cuppa in the afternoon. While there was quite a delay in the high tea service, these things happen and cannot be predicted no matter how hard you work! Overall a lovely way to spend a day.

vintage style VVDO 16 | Velvet Decollete

Vintagely yours,

Velvet DeCollete

 

 

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Thursdays on O’Connell | Ten Days of Fashion Catwalk

Thursdays on O’Connell | Ten Days of Fashion Catwalk

Auckland City has some pretty cool stuff. Like crazy vintage street parties with fashion shows and cocktails. I know. I was there.

I was there because I was walking the catwalk for Hudson, a stylish boutique on O’Connell street. Nerve wracking doesn’t quite describe walking uphill on cobbles, in heels, while trying to look kinda sexy. Clothing is my armour though, so I donned my favourite vintage hat and pearls and had a blast strutting my short-ass stuff.  Plus it was a great excuse to hang out with these babes on a Thursday night.

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I think I did an acceptable job of repping under 5.4″ models haha!

I’d never been to O’Connell street before, but I’ll be back. The warming, rich hot chocolates from Bohemein Chocolaterie guarantee it.

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Strangely Normal kept the crown lubricated at their fab mid century Tiki Bar, while Dr Sketchy provided a pinup sketch scene for the artistically inclined. After changing into my favourite purple ensemble I spent the rest of the night dancing, eating spaghetti and meatballs and admiring Rose’s incredible vintage coat!

Rose from Glory Days Magazine was a driving force behind the evening and I’m ever so grateful she got me involved. Hopefully there’ll be a repeat event next year!

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Photos | Kate Van Der Drift
(plus a couple of selfies and snapshots)

 

 

 

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The Glory Days Deco Market

The Glory Days Deco Market

New Zealand has some fantastic vintage events, and I’m lucky enough that my job(s) take me to most of them!

Clementine and I had a marvelous time taking the Beckon Couture stall to the Glory Days Deco Market at Highwic HouseHendricks Gin had delicious punch, there was dancing on the lawn and some truly amazing Art Deco garb. (not to mention the most impressive picnic table I’ve ever seen – complete with silverware and gramophone!)

I’ll certainly be attending next year. You should too, considering entry to the Deco Day was only $5 – a bargain considering Highwick House usually charges a $10 entry.

I took some snaps on the day for your viewing pleasure. Enjoy with a gin in true 20’s style.

velvet decollete, 1920s, girl, lady, woma, dome, taxidermy bird, beret

I don’t always have a taxidermy bird, but when I do I pose with it.

This was my first attempt at an art deco / 1920’s inspired outfit and makeup. I don’t think it was half bad!

Outfit of the day

Beret | Gift from my Mother
Beaded collar | Tock Tick VIntage
Sheer blouse | Misery Boutique – Op shop find
Trousers | Alexander McQueen – Op shop find
Glorious velvet peeptoe shoes | Borrowed from my mother

And just for fun here’s Clementine and I making silly faces. Because that’s what we do.

I do hope we see you at the next event. If you know of any fun vintage outings let me know, any excuse to wear something pretty !

love,
              Velvet x

PS: All those fake cucumbers in the first montage were for a cucumber decorating competition. You heard me. Cucumber decorating. It was adorable.

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Birthday Snaps | A Retro Luau Party

Birthday Snaps | A Retro Luau Party

Remember that lost weekend between Christmas and New Years Eve? The one when everyone (hospo staff included) are on holiday and nothing opens. Nothing.

That’s my birthday weekend.

So this year I celebrated in true pinup style with a vintage inspired Luau at home!

It started with cool drinks on a hot day and ended with burlesque dancers lip syncing the Chicago soundtrack under disco lights. Lei’s and fruity cocktails for all!

Here’s some candid poolside snaps so you can see how it went down. Plus a bonus picture of my not-quite-one-year-old niece dressed like the island princess she is. Because she’s a cutie patootie.

(I forgot to take pictures of the idyllic decorations my awesome lover set up, but trust me, they were amazing )

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A Classics Museum Carnival

A Classics Museum Carnival

The Classics Museum 3rd Birthday Carnival fell on a sweltering New Zealand summer day.
Normally I’d be happy to swap my petticoats for sarongs in the heat – but after setting up the Vintage Amusements carnival in the midday sun I threw on a cute carnival outfit.

(I managed to win Best Dressed from the lovely ladies at Glory Days Magazine too!)

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Photos | Tiffany Curtis Photography

Outfit breakdown

Top | Forever New
Skirt | Custom made by me – Beckon Couture
Petticoat | Bought online somewhere
Shoes | Number One Shoe Warehouse
Bangles | Thrifted
Flowers | Equip
Parasol | Gift

Scroll down to see some sassy best dressed contestants and me being a cheese while receiving my prize!

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Photo | Tiffany Curtis Photography

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Photo | Tiffany Curtis Photography

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Photo | Tiffany Curtis Photgraphy

Velvets Tips for Summer Pinup Dressing

  1. Keep your fabrics light and try to avoid too many synthetics – They’ll make you sweat!
  2. Keep your hair off your neck. a beehive, cute ponytail or poodle ‘do is a lifesaver.
  3. Deodorant and spray on sun screen. Lots of both! I find spray on sunscreen less sticky and less staining on my clothes.
  4. (a very personal tip) tuck a cotton pad – like you use for toner or makeup – into the front of your bra to catch any chest sweat and prevent unsightly patches on the front of your top or dress!
pinup girls, kissing booth, velvet decollete, betty rage, monique sweet, pinup, style, blog, jukebox diner, classics museum

At the Kissing Booth with pinup babes Monique Sweet and Betty Rage

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James and I cooling off with a well deserved cold Coke

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The Jukebox Diner | Tiffancy Curtis Photography

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Who Do? Voodoo! A 1920’s Voodoo Cabaret Costume

Who Do? Voodoo! A 1920’s Voodoo Cabaret Costume

Halloween darlings …. the best holiday of the year. 

Macabre temptress Bay of Bay Stagewear hosted a spooktacular pre-halloween shindig for those of us that feel one All Hallows Eve simply isn’t enough.
I was there with bells on.

Okay maybe not bells.
Or a shirt.
But there were definitely bones, feathers and a pair of green silk pasties.

voodoo priestess 193-s costume halloween

This is possibly my favourite last minute costume to date!

The Concept: I didn’t have a clear vision in mind when I started this costume, I just wanted something fun. Fun turned out to be a New Orleans Voodoo inspired 1920’s cabaret costume. I do believe it came out rather well.

The Makeup:  Influenced by stylized skull makeups and the lush greens of my headdress. I’m certainly no expert but I found a white eyeliner useful for mapping out the skull shape and mixing a little foundation with the facepaint helped it go on easier. Hit me up if you’d like a tutorial!

Scroll down for an Outfit Breakdown or click on the images to see the costume in more detail.

burlesque halloween costume tailcoat jacket aztec voodoo head dress bones spooky costume

skull, bones, feathers, aztec, voodoo, costume, halloween,

voodoo cabaret circus performer 1920s jazz new orleans style halloween costume

feather and skull custom made voodoo tribal headress hat

Outfit breakdown
Tailcoat | My amazing Mum made this for me ten years ago. I sewed skulls and chicken bones on to it two days before the party.
Headdress + Necklace + Pasties | Beckon Couture
Wig | Trademe – trimmed by me
High Waisted Underwear | Kmart
Stockings | Fiori Hosiery
Shoes | Op Shop find

Just one piece of advice dears; If you happen to be storing a large box of cleaned animal bones for an occasion such as this – make sure you seal them with resin first or you might retrieve them to find a box of dusty bone shaped chalk!

Happy Halloween, see you on the other side!

                                                                          Velvet x

 

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The Pinup Honeys: Congrats to Miss Victory Violet

The Pinup Honeys: Congrats to Miss Victory Violet

For those of you in the pinup world, you’ll know the glorious Miss Victory Violet took out Miss Pinup at Viva Las Vegas this year. For those of you not in the pinup world – that’s a super big deal and we’re all very proud of her here in little old NZ. Pinup or not you should check out her blog and show her some love! She’s an ocean of knowledge in all things hair, makeup and retro fashion related.

Anywho, The Pinup Honeys Social Club decided to have a wee shindig at the luxurious Langham Hotel Auckland to congratulate her on all her hard work. We dressed nice, we drank fancy cocktails, we posed. Alot. (you would too, don’t deny it).
pinup, nz pinups, elegant, pinup model, evening dress, retro, vintage, style, gloves, fashion, ballgown, evening wear, roller sets, pinup social club, velvet decollete, couch, sofa

I didn’t have a gown quite formal enough so I whipped up a classy black iridescent ballgown from fabric left over from my bridesmaids dresses! I just knew it would come in handy, even if it’s 5 years later haha!

Outfit Breakdown 
Dress | Beckon Couture
Gloves | Vintage – Salvation Army Op Shop
Pearls | Vintage – Op shop
Shoes | Wild Pair
Stockings | Pretty Pins from Farmers
Hair Flower | Borrowed from my mama <3 

retro, vintage, man, duke de bonair, suave, charming, suit, waistcoat, style, fashion, bowtie, classic,My partner in crime and love of my life Duke De Bonair looking suave

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pinup, nz pinups, pinup girls, pinup models, evening dress, retro, vintage, style, gloves, fashion, ballgowns, evening wear, roller sets, pinup social club, soda fontaine, miss charlotte cake, velvet decollete, miss rouge
Posing with some of my favourite dames Soda Fontaine, Miss Charlotte Cake and Miss Rouge. I love how we look like a sassy pinup Girl Gang.

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Couldn’t resist sharing this snap I took of the effervescent Soda Fontaine. She’s such a starlet!

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pinup social club, pinups, nz pinups, group photo, retro, vintage fashion

The Pinup Honeys Social CLub – we’re a well dressed bunch dontcha think?

Photos | Velvet DeCollete, Duke De Bonair + David Watson

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