pinup fashion

Vintage Earrings | My Collection and Favourite Styles

Vintage Earrings | My Collection and Favourite Styles

It started with one pair of vintage screws on, on an overcrowded op shop rack. Then *poof*, I had a vintage earring collection! Read on for the stories behind my favourite vintage costume earrings.

As all collections do, it started with a single pair. A single pair of screw on earrings on a crowded op shop jewellery rack. And then suddenly, *poof* my single pair turned into a collection.

There’s something so special about vintage earrings. They have history, unique designs, that special something you don’t find on a department store shelf. They feel more… personal. Like the vintage earrings you choose say more about you than the modern ones. I don’t know exactly what my favourites say about me, maybe you can tell me?

So back to that first pair I bought. An unusual crowned skull design, with flowers around the eyes. Kind of weird and creepy looking, but impossible to walk away from. I’ve been carrying these around since I was 15, long before I fell in love with the style of bygone eras.

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Next were these glorious magenta earrings from Tock Tick Vintage.

Deep pink paste jewels with glinting rhinestones and faux pearls, they came with a matching necklace. An anniversary gift from my husband, these drop earrings brim with sentimental value, and I love imagining all the special occasions they’ve adorned before ours. ( Their romantic colorway inspired the lining and embellishment of my Orchid dress! )

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The glittering trays of Tock Tick yielded these beauties too ( Maybe I have a shopping problem?). The chartreuse frosted glass glows from within, and the gold tone leaved are dotted with tiny green gems. The contrasting textures make these my go-to for subtle glamour, plus their green and gold tones bring out my eyes! See ’em in action paired with my fifties inspired suit.

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High on my list of wonderful things? Fairytale forest earrings with cute teeny toadstools and flowers!

They look like miniature Alice In Wonderland gardens bursting out of their daisy shaped beds. Made in Czechoslovakia these dead stock earrings were still clipped to their original packaging card. ( Although time has taken it’s toll, so I’m very wary of worsening those pesky hairline cracks!)

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Bigger is better right? More is more! More rhinestones that is.

Once again my green obsession comes to the fore, and I snapped these up like a magpie at Very Vintage Day Out 2016. I haven’t even worn them yet, but their graduated leafy greens make me happy. ( If you know what these would look great with, please let me know! I haven’t found the right outfit yet.)

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These pearl clusters were a ‘new town’ gift to myself. After moving house for the seventh time in 10 years and feeling pretty sorry for myself, these were a grand total of $12 at the local vintage shop!

They’re just a classic, easy to wear style that works well with fifties and sixties clothes. Bigger clip on’s always make me nervous, but these faux pearls are light enough that I don’t stress about them falling off.
I prefer ivory and tea toned pearl jewellery to bright white, how about you?

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Community hall junk sale. $4. Vintage rhinestone clip on’s.
Need I say more?

These are my most recent vintage jewellery purchase. Winged shaped earrings are so elegant, sweeping upward and sparkling against your hair without crowding your jawline. Perfection! ( In my dreams I wear these with clear, rhinestone encrusted cat eye spectacles and feel infinitely glamorous )

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I hope you enjoyed this peek into my jewellery box. Please share your favourites with me by leaving your Pinterest profile below, so I can add you to my vintage earring board!

With style and sass,

               Velvet DeCollete

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Miss Pinup New Zealand 2017 | Who, Why, What and Where?

Miss Pinup New Zealand 2017 | Who, Why, What and Where?

During the Miss Pin Up New Zealand application process I put a lot of thought into what ‘Pin Up’ and pinup culture really means to me.
What do I love about pinup?
What do I want people to know about pinup?

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For me pinup culture is about more than fashion, more than photos and more than a homage to vintage beauty. For me, pinup is an opportunity to learn from the inspirational women of the past and the impact they had on our social, political and creative landscapes. By doing so we can become stronger, more confident women and better role models for those who follow in our footsteps.

Pinup is also a way for me to express myself through style, using clothes, hair and makeup to create the woman I want to be on any particular day. In a society that places increasing pressure on women to look a certain way, taking ownership of your body and personal style is incredibly freeing!

I entered Miss Pinup to share those views with as many people as possible, inspiring women of all ages to educate, encourage and empower each other.
I hope you’ll join me – whether you’re cheering from the audience or encouraging your mates to vote online in the People’s Choice category , your support will make all the difference!

Miss Pinup New Zealand in association with Sailor Jerry spiced rum is held on Saturday October 28th at the Very Vintage Day Out.

 

Let’s Take a Look at the Ten Finalists!

The top ten finalists for Miss Pinup New Zealand have been announced!
They’re an impressive posse of pinups and I’m absolutely thrilled to say I’m one of them ( and that I can breathe again after holding my breath til the call came in! ).


 Taking the stage at Miss Pinup New Zealand 2017  are….
*drumroll please*…..

From left to right, top row then bottom row:
Miss Lulu Jade
Miss Kitty Kaos
Mrs Greatnews
Velvet DeCollete
Miss Jessica Mae
Miss Honeybee
Xamia Arc
Ginger
Miss Flossy Pots
Vola Tile

This is my first pageant and I’m not going to lie, the competition looks intense. There isn’t a single pinup in that lineup who doesn’t deserve to win, so it’s going to take a lot of work to stand out!

If you’d like to support my Miss Pinup New Zealand journey you can…

Vote for me in the People’s Choice category
Share my Facebook or Instagram posts and encourage your friends and family to vote using the hashtags #VoteVelvet and #MPUNZ2017 !

 

Finalist montage | Various Photographers via Miss Pinup New Zealand
Vote Velvet Photo | Tony McKay, Hair and Makeup by the Beauty School Dropouts

 

With Style and Sass,

               Velvet DeCollete

 

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Nylon Stockings & Vintage Tease

Nylon Stockings & Vintage Tease

I’m all about the tease. Silky nylon stockings, a wayward bra strap and a cheeky grin appeal to me far more than brazen modern erotica. Not to say the modern stuff doesn’t have it’s place, it’s just not my place.

The Villa showcases all that soft vintage deliciousness. Capturing only natural light, these photos have a dreamy homemade feel, like a lazy rainy afternoon. The kind where you turn up the heater and don’t bother getting dressed.

Unsurprisingly, we photographed this set in a small renovated villa. I enter the scene wearing a peach silk chemise and knickers with vintage nylon stockings, but it does get somewhat naughtier. For those wishing to indulge Froger has compiled the full set into luscious E-book, available here. At just $15 NZD it’s a steal for all my USA and UK fans!

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Outfit

Chemise | Galliano
Stockings | Vintage fully fashioned nylons, thrifted

When I’m choosing clothes for a shoot I imagine the character I’m trying to portray. What would a cheeky 1950’s babe be wearing on a lazy afternoon with her lover? What would have her comfortable and confidant, laughing as he snapped some pin up photos with their Kodak Argus?

I settled on this soft peachy slip. It’s the kind of lingerie I’d put on under a dress, and then lounge around in after the dress hit the floor. Not wearing a girdle or suspenders was a deliberate choice. I think our flirty fifties character would have taken her girdle off by now, or maybe she’s only just getting ready to go out?

Model, HMUA | Velvet DeCollete
Photographer | Froger

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Looking for more? If you’re into pin ups, girls in stockings or vintage inspired erotica, these posts will be right up your alley…

Play Your Cards Right ( Bubblegum )                 Retro Playboy                                      Reading in Lingerie 

With style and sass,

            Velvet DeCollete

Posted by velvetdecollete in PINUP, 0 comments
Tui | A Bespoke 1950’s Cocktail Dress

Tui | A Bespoke 1950’s Cocktail Dress

This outfit didn’t make the cut.
The cut for my Miss Pinup entry video that is. I wear the heck out of it every where else!

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The Outfit

We shot the Tui dress as part of my glove styling video, but technical issues meant it didn’t make the cut! I absolutely love this formal pinup look though and I think you will too.

Like Tui feathers gleaming in the sun, this iridescent fabric makes for a next level little black dress. It was left over from my bridesmaids dresses seven years ago, so in true make-do style I designed a dress to fit the yardage I had left!  Based on a 1950’s wedding dress, the boned bodice features horizontal pleats reminiscent of lorica sementata ( who else loves the concept of an armoured evening dress?). Floral lace froths over the sweetheart shelf bust, hand stitched on for perfect placement. For the most economical use of fabric the skirt is a gathered rectangle – I’d prefer a gathered circle skirt but there just wasn’t enough fabric!

To complement the fabric’s pink highlights I accessorised with vintage white and magenta costume jewellery. The glamorous necklace and earrings set are especially sentimental to me, an anniversary gift from my ever patient husband. Matching magenta orchids and my favourite vintage satin gloves finish the outfit with a pretty elegance.

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Photos | James Beck
Tui vintage style dress | Velvet DeCollete
Hair flowers | Made With Love NZ
Vintage Gloves | I’ve had them so long I can’t remember!
Vintage Costume Jewellery | Tock Tick Vintage
Leather shoes | Alonso Andretti – thrifted

PS: I wore this dress at a Pinup Honey’s event before adding the lace, check it out!

With style & sass,

                   Velvet DeCollete

 

 

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Secret Garden | A 1950’s Inspired Cocktail Suit

Secret Garden | A 1950’s Inspired Cocktail Suit

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Power dressing is nothing new. From the Phoenician purple robes of the Romans to 80’s power suits, we’ve been using clothes to boost our confidence and social standing for thousands of years. Which got me thinking; what does power dressing look like to a vintage loving gal?

For me the answer was a well cut suit. The suit worn by a film noir vixen perched on a detective’s desk, knowing he’ll do whatever she asks. A suit that says you’re 100% business, and 100% woman. A suit you’d wear to the funeral of your fifth wealthy husband mysteriously dies.

Obviously I needed to make this suit.

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The Suit

Drawing inspiration from 1950’s clothing company Lilli Ann, I sketched a figure enhancing peplum silhouette. The wide neckline, fitted waist and flared hip accentuate my hourglass figure, while the slimline pencil skirt puts a wiggle in my walk – I’m known for walking quite fast and this skirt definitely hobbles my stride a bit!  A textured black fabric with a woven pattern of golden roses balances the hyper feminine cut with dark glamour.

This is my first ladies suit ( I’ve made one trouser suit before ). Delayed for months due to costume commissions I finally finished it in time for the Duke and I’s seven year wedding anniversary. ( We stayed at Hotel Debrett and watched Horror at the Civic Theatre. ) There’s a tiny area of fit I’m not quite happy with in the jacket, but considering I had to fit it on myself I’m very happy with the result!

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The Outfit

Two statement collars are better than one and the PUG Lauren top creates a striking inky black layered neckline.

No well dressed dame would be caught without gloves and hat.  The beaded gloves were a serendipitous find at Tock Tick Vintage long before I started the suit. Their glossy floral beading was too pretty to pass up!  The velvet tilt hat is from the Auckland Textile Fair. A band and bow of woven black straw circle the hat, and I added the veiling for extra sass.

My earrings are green and gold vintage clip ons . The frosted glass matches my eyes (a rarity) , and seems to glow from within . Classic back seam stockings, black leather Alonso Andretti shoes and a gold beaded clutch finished my 50’s power dressing dream.

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We shot these photos in the picturesque Hamilton Gardens while filming my entry video for Miss Pin Up New Zealand 2017. Subscribe to my blog to follow my progress in the competition!

See more outfits from my entry video below!
1940’s summer style

With style & sass

         Velvet x

Posted by velvetdecollete in FASHION STORIES, PINUP, 1 comment
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.

I wore the Freshly Squeezed Lemonade wiggle skirt. It’s bright, fresh and would you just look at those novelty appliqued pockets!? The detail and craftsmanship is goooorgeous. The Girlboss blouse is a crisp white shirt with a statement collar, very Elizabeth Taylor.

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Miss Charlotte Cake modeled the Limeade swing skirt from the Freshly Squeezed collection. If you don’t know Charlotte, she’s fricken awesome, hilarious and has an amazing blog, especially if you’re into baking taaaaaaasty stuuuuuuff!

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The show also featured garments from her 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, we had a blast!

With style and sass,

                  Velvet

Posted by velvetdecollete in FASHION STORIES, PINUP, 0 comments
5 Ways to Buy the Right Vintage, Not Any Vintage.

5 Ways to Buy the Right Vintage, Not Any Vintage.

Do you love vintage clothes?

I love vintage clothes.

I love them with a magpie-ish, kid in a candy store fervor that has lead me to buying things that have never and will never fit, that are falling apart, or that I’ll just straight out never wear but I wanted them anyway.
To curb my dragonish hoarding tendencies I’ve developed a five point checklist to ensure I’m buying the right vintage garment, not every vintage garment. It really does help separate the investments from the impulse buys.

So if you have overflowing wardrobes, empty bank accounts and still nothing to wear, this might help! Shop wisely and dress well…

Velvet’s ‘The Right Vintage’ Shopping Checklisthow to buy the right vintage clothes

1.  Does the garment have any damage?

Vintage garments are generally preloved and made from different fabrics than the hardy synthetics popular today. Holding that dress up to a window or light will show you any holes or patches of thinning fabric. Perspiration is acidic so check under the arms for any discoloration and damage caused by sweat.

2. Are the fastenings intact?

Check the zips, buttons, hooks and eyes, eyelets or pop studs. Are they damaged or missing? Is the fabric tearing or fraying around them? There may be enough spare fabric in a hem to replace a covered button, but don’t buy anything with very damaged fastenings unless you know it can be fixed, or you’re happy to have it replaced with a modern equivalent.
( Check those belt loops and belts for damage while you’re at it. )

3. Does it fit?

Ignore size labels and try it on. Female proportions and sizing have changed a lot through the decades and you’ll find a 1950’s size 14 is around a modern NZ size 8. If you’re buying online make sure you check your measurements carefully.
Circa Vintage Clothing has a handy guide to the alpha sizing system used in some New Zealand and Australian vintage clothing.

4. Can you wear it right away?

Unless you’re a highly motivated seamstress with plenty of free time, damaged items and those needing large alterations will sit in your wardrobe forever. (Trust me, I have a whole drawer of things needing alts or repairs but I never have time!). Some vintage fabrics will be too delicate to withstand alterations and most seamstresses aren’t familiar with the era appropriate sewing techniques.

5. Does it suit you?

This is imperative. Put the garment on and be honest. Does it reflect your personal style? Is it flattering? Does it coordinate with things you already own? If not, it might be best to put it back on the rack.

best vintage shopping tips

With a few alterations this checklist can be applied to vintage shoes, accessories and furniture as well as clothing. While leaving that eye catching but not-quite-right piece in the store can be gut wrenching, it’s better to leave it for someone who’ll use it or restore it and keep your valuable space for things that are perfect for you!

Happy shopping x

With style and sass,

                                Velvet DeCollete

 

 

 

Posted by velvetdecollete in FASHION STORIES, LIFESTYLE, 0 comments

Monday Style Tip No.34

secure-plunging-necklines-with-fashion-tape

The key to owning that plunging neckline? Fashion tape and oodles of confidence.

Stylishly yours,

          Velvet  x

Posted by velvetdecollete in FASHION STORIES, OTHER, 0 comments

Monday Style Tip No.34

 

pearl-or-diamante-studs-match-everything

They’re basically the perfect earring

Stylishly yours,

          Velvet  x

Posted by velvetdecollete in FASHION STORIES, OTHER, 0 comments

Monday Style Tip No.29

 

Shoe clips add versatile glamour | Monday Style Tip

I’ve also used them as dress clips, brooches and hair accessories, so don’t feel like you can only use them on shoes!

Stylishly yours,

          Velvet  x

Posted by velvetdecollete in FASHION STORIES, OTHER, 0 comments