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My Super Cute 1950’s Halloween Outfit

My Super Cute 1950’s Halloween Outfit

I intended to have this post out before Halloween, but (obviously) that didn’t happen, so lets say it’s a nightmare before Christmas.

I bought this adorably spoopy cartoon spider print fabric at Halloween last year. I didn’t get a chance to sew up an outfit at the time, but it was on the top of my pile for this October!

 

Construction & Design

Halloween calls for boldness and fun, and so did the super cute spider print! I contrasted the printed cotton with vintage orange linen from my stash for vibrancy and graphic appeal.

The natural fibers of these fabrics makes them perfect for the humidly warm October days in New Zealand. (Which means they’re also perfect for summer, when I’ll be wearing this because everyday is Halloween!)

The Top

I used my trusty Simplicity 1426, with a few size adjustments and different straps. The cups don’t sit as smoothly as the version of this top I made in cotton sateen, I may add some foam cups at a later stage. I stitched in a nude bra strap hook and eye set for the back closure, which ended up almost invisible!

The Skirt

The skirt is a classic self drafted circle skirt. I decided on a contrast waistband to emphasise my waist, with a back zip and hook and eyes. After cutting out the skirt I cut the top out of the leftovers – a great way to make the most of fabric when you’re using a pattern with small pieces!

 

Vintage Pinup girl Velvet DeCollete talks about sewing her cute spider print halloween skirt and top set, a 1950's skirt and top using self drafted and

 

Outfit Details

Skirt + top | Made by me
Floral Haircomb | Made by me ( Similar styles can be found in my Etsy Boutique)
Bangles | Thrifted
Shoes | Preloved

 

 

Posted by velvetdecollete in FASHION STORIES, PINUP, 0 comments
Monochrome Minxes

Monochrome Minxes

Hellooooo darlings!

Firstly, apologies for the break in blogging.
I’ve been going through a very busy and stressful time for the last few months and needed to take a step back to avoid burning myself out.

Secondly, I’m baaaaaack!
While I’d originally planned to have these posts out before Halloween, it just didn’t happen. But I know that everyday is Halloween for ya’ll as well, and better late than never right!?

So let’s get back into some fun, spooky, retro style…

The Concept

We shot this set with Froger on the same day as my Spider Girl set. It was the first time I’d modeled alongside Rose Halfpenny, so we basically just winged it!

Rose is very much a stunning modern model – tall, incredibly slim and catwalk ready – while I’m petite, curvier and have a very vintage aesthetic. So this should could have looked kinda disjointed.  We created a cohesive look that combined our personal styles using monochrome outfits, combining modern and vintage influences, and shooting in black and white.

I styled a look focused on creating interest with layers and textures.  Vintage and fetish inspired modern pieces married sheer fabrics with leather and patent finishes, topped with my bespoke zebra stripe (faux) fur and muff. I really wanted to embody a juxtaposition of demureness, sexuality and outlandishness a la John Willie and Ryan Heshka.
Rose wore reproduction 1950’s lingerie paired with a gritty modern jacket and boots.

 

My Outfit Details

Beaded Spider Hair Pins | Velvet DeCollete ( That’s me! I make this pins to order)
Faux Fur Shrug and Muff | Fluff Club by Velvet Decollete – Custom Design
Gloves | Vintage
Sheer Blouse | Thrifted
Sheer Wiggle Skirt + Zebra Shoes | Preloved
Stockings | Voodoo Hosiery
Lingerie | Bras N Things

 

All photos by the excellent Froger Photography.

With Style & Sass,

Velvet DeCollete

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Vintage Witch | 1970’s Inspired Outfit

Vintage Witch | 1970’s Inspired Outfit

It’s October now (how did that happen!?), the month where I dress like the love child of Stevie Nicks and the spirit of Halloweens gone by.

Halloween aligns with spring here in New Zealand and isn’t widely celebrated, so I dream of a spooky autumn Hallow’s Eve surrounded by pumpkins and crimson leaves. While I hope to one day spend October in the USA or Europe, for now I  make do by making my wardrobe and life even spookier than usual.

What else could you expect from someone who lives in a haunted hotel?

This vintage witch outfit is inspired by the dreamy white witches of the 1970’s, using their crystals and spells for love and healing.

THE OUTFIT

1970s romantic vintage witch outfit Velvet DeCollete

 

It’s fairly simple as my outfits go. Just a hat and a dress.
No gloves, no shoes, basic accessories.
But with a dress like this, who needs ’em?

This bewitching dress is a vintage gothic dream. Inky black satin falls in glossy folds and the cut is impeccable. Delicate latticework on the shoulders and yoke creates just the right amount of texture and definition. The double sleeves are my favourite feature, the silhouette created by that cape-like oversleeve is so dramatic!

Created by iconic New Zealand designer Annie Bonza, this gown is one of the most precious in my collection. Owning such a beautiful piece of Kiwi fashion history is a humbling experience.  Considered a pioneer of boutique fashion, Annie’s signature ‘doodle’ style consists of braiding, ribbon, beading, embroidery and hand painting clothing with Māori and Polynesia influences. You can see some of that trademark braided lattice on this dress! Her designs are held in collections at Te Papa Museum and won awards at the Benson & Hedges Fashion Design Awards in 1971 and 1989.

If you’re not familiar with Annie Bonza, I recommend you visit this New Zealand Fashion Museum page to find out more about her.

 

1970s romantic vintage witch outfit Velvet DeCollete

1970s romantic vintage witch look by Velvet DeCollete

 

I made this witch hat from an old pre-loved felt hat I had lying around. Its crown is softly pointed, in a wearable  ‘daily witch’ style. The fluttery pink flowers are two hairflowers that I clipped to the grosgrain band for a romantic, feminine finish.

(Keep scrolling to find a quick tutorial for reshaping your own hat!)

I tied a dusty pink grosgrain ribbon around my neck to carry on those soft femme vibes, threw on a few silver rings and pronounced this outfit done!

1970s vintage witch dress Velvet DeCollete

1970s romantic vintage witch dress and hat Velvet DeCollete 1

HAIR & MAKEUP

In keeping with the romantic 1970s influence I chose a simple makeup look.  A swipe of pale green eyeshadow, bold liquid eyeliner and long lashes, with white eyeliner pencil on the inner rim to create that bright eyed effect. I did apply false eyelashes to the edge of my bottom lashes for the first time! I loved the bottom lash effect, but I wish I’d blended the edge in with liner a bit more.

Cheeks and lips are dusted with subtle peachy pinks, and brows are softly defined.

I left my hair in its natural curly state, and backcombed the bottom half for fluffy volume.

 

1970s Vintage witch makeup look Velvet DeCollete

 

DIY VINTAGE WITCH HAT

1970s vintage witch hat diy

 

I don’t know about you, but  cheap plastic witch hats make me cringe. They’re not sustainable, they don’t look good and the number of them that end up in landfill every Halloween hurts my soul.

Good thing ethical witches like you can make a vintage inspired witch hat with a wave of your wand! Or at least with nothing more than a thrifted felt hat and your own two hands.

Make your own vintage style pointy witch hat

  1. Find an old felt hat. I used a thrifted one that bought a few years ago. I forgot to take a photo before I started, but it had a standard round crown, and had become a bit faded on my hat rack, which doesn’t matter if you’re making it into a vintage witch hat!
    Now stick that hat upside down in a pot or bowl of hot tap water. Make sure the whole of the crown is submerged, I plonked a bowl in mine to stop it floating back up. ( The yellow in the water is just dye from the hat, don’t panic if this happens. )
  2. Once the crown of your hat is totally soaked through and warm, you can start shaping it! Put an old towel on your bench to catch the excess water and start gently stretching and pulling the crown into it’s new shape. If it starts drying out, just pop it back in the hot water for a minute.
    I created the pointed shape by holding one side of the crown against my benchtop like in the photo, and then pulling on the top side to stretch it out. I worked my way around the crown like this, making sure I kept my fingertips where I wanted the point to be.
  3. Every now and then check your shape and use your hands or the side of a bowl or vase to smooth our any unwanted dips or bumps. You can also lightly wet the brim and reshape that if you want to!
  4.  Try on your damp hat and make sure you like the shape. Then leave it somewhere warm and sheltered to dry – I left mine in the sun on my deck.

Now your hat is reshaped trim is with ribbons and flowers, paint it, glitter it, whatever you want!

 

Reshaping a felt hat into a diy vintage witch hat

Don’t feel like you have to stick to wide brimmed hats either! I also reshaped an old felt fedora into a 1920’s influenced witch hat.

With Style & Sass,

Velvet DeCollete

 

Posted by velvetdecollete in FASHION STORIES, 2 comments
French Twist

French Twist

They say dress for the job you want, not the job you have. If that’s the case, the job I want is 1980’s Tekken character, who’s about to shiv you for your Louis Vuitton in a Parisian disco.
Seriously, I’ll cut you for that purse. (And then walk into the club purse first.)

 

French Twist, green eyed pinup girl Velvet DeCollete sits cross legged wearing suede boots, a black lace teddy and pink leather accessories

Style Concept

This outfit didn’t have a specific style inspiration, it was all about the mood. Feminine, soft but extroverted, sensual and slightly dangerous. The kind of woman you want to hit on, but you’re pretty sure she’ll kick your ass.

Baby pink and black is a favourite combo of mine, as you might have noticed from my branding. I adore the contrast, and the connotations of good girl and dangerous dame assigned to each colour.

Aaaand I really wanted to wear these boots. A beautiful line is created with an over-the-knee style, gently pointed toe and platform-less sole, making the perfectly shaped boot for cosplaying classic superheroines.  A night of dancing proved them to be surprisingly comfortable!
The cherry on top? Got ’em on sale too!

The rustic sitting room hints at alpine ski club vibes – post midwinter party? Underwater tones thrown by the stained glass windows create nightclub-esque streaks of colour in what would otherwise be a cozy room.

 

French Twist, sexy green eyed pinup girl Velvet DeCollete sits cross legged wearing suede boots, a black lace teddy and pink leather accessories

French Twist, Pinup Girl Velvet DeCollete poses in long boots, leather gloves, stockings, black lace lingerie and a pink beret

French twist, pink leather and black lace pinup girl Velvet DeCollete

Outfit Details

Satin + Lace Bodysuit | Pleasure State
Leather Gloves | Vintage via Trademe
Wool Beret | Boohoo.com
Vinyl Belt | Pinup Girl Clothing
Stockings | Pretty Polly
Suede Boots | Number One Shoes
Leather Collar + Cuffs | Aliexpress
Earrings | So old I can’t remember!

 

French Twist cute modern pinup girl Velvet DeCollete is a good girl gone bad in leather and lace

 

Love this look? Follow me on Instagram, subscribe to my blog in the sidebar, or sign up for a membership at Frogerphoto.com for more photos from this set, and other sets like it!

Photography | Mike Froger
Model, HMUA, Styling | Velvet DeCollete

With Style & Sass,

  Velvet DeCollete

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Tickled Pink | Vintage Fashion Inspiration

Four years ago I would never have worn pink.

I saw pink as overly ‘girly’, a symbol of the expectations and restrictions placed on women by society. A colour worn because it appealed to boys.

Now I wear pink to celebrate the power of fierce femininity, my pride in being a woman and our potential to overcome those restrictions. I wear pink aggressively and intentionally to challenge it’s reputation as a soft, submissive colour.

With that in mind, this dose of vintage fashion inspiration pays tribute to the versatility of pink!

 

Suzy Parker Sunny Harnett and Dovima in promotional shoot for film Funny Face

 

Pretty & Practical

Pink was immensely popular in the nineteen fifties and sixties, for everything. Pink furniture, pink wallpaper, pink kitchens and of course pink clothes. Pink wasn’t just for parties, it was for everyday.

While it’s hard to imagine wearing a pink suit to a contemporary office, those two women in lush pink coats are an advert for “Working Women in Pink” – featured in a 1953 issue of Glamour Magazine.

Make pinks practical with cotton or wool fabrics. Shell pink capris and knitwear the colour of turkish delight were casual wardrobe basics, often paired with the prerequisite matching hat. (Those pale trousers are a disaster waiting to happen in my house, my dog is far too keen on muddy cuddles. But they do look incredibly chic!)

All those infinitely practical shirt dresses have me swooning. I want one in every style – apron fronted, long sleeve, sleeveless… I can’t be the only one attracted to the simplicity of looking crisply put-together while only having to pick one garment in the morning!

 

Playful & Bold

I’ll take my pink fearless, sassy and occasionally bordering on the ridiculous thanks.

You see that raspberry ensemble by Jean Patou? I’m obsessed. OBSESSED I TELL YOU. I really, really want to recreate that suit and coat, only not lined with a cute Southeast Asian mammal.

And those red and pink contrasting colour combos? Diviiiiiiiiiiiine. Picking the wrong shades makes pink with red look like a four year old’s Valentine drawing, or painfully tacky lingerie. Somehow these bold choices just work though – maybe it’s the slightly purple tinged pinks?

Whether it’s a harlequin print or giant roses on your head, being adventurous with pink will ensure you’re seen, even if you’re not heard.

 

Glamorous & Romantic

Ahhh, the traditional lady in pink. Soft, sensual and elegant these gowns are all strawberry marshmallows and rose tinted visions. Bare shoulders and nipped waists prove that pink isn’t just for little girls.

Shirley Maclaine wearing Edith Head had to be included, because while it’s a costume, her pink sheath, candyfloss hair and enormous fur coat are simultaneously OTT and insanely glam.

While I feel that evening wear is a predictable choice for pink, these vintage designs are gloriously feminine.  That dusky blush bridal ensemble would look in vogue walking down the aisle today!

 

 

For even more vintage outfit inspiration in every shade of pink, visit my dedicated pink Pinterest board! A candy shop of garments and fashion photographs I couldn’t include awaits you, and I just know you’ll be inspired!

If you love nineteen forties, fifties and sixties fashion you might like this post, exploring spots and dots in vintage fashion design.

 

Polka dots and spots were immensely popular in fashion from the 1930s, 1940s and 1950's. Let's take a look at how sophisticated and sexy polka dot clothes can really be!

With Style & Sass,

Velvet DeCollete

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Honest Review | Downtown Dame Faux Leather Wiggle Dress

Honest Review | Downtown Dame Faux Leather Wiggle Dress

A brief but honest review of the hottest dress I’ve ever worn
( aesthetically and physically )

I’m talking about the Downtown Dame dress from Pin Up Girl Clothing, in bubblegum pink faux leather. I’ve had this dress for a year, but it took a few wears to decide how I really felt about it.
I’ll keep it short and sweet – this dress is hot, as in you feel like a total babe made entirely of dangerous curves.
It’s also hot, as in if you’re in a warm environment you’ll sweat like cheese in clingfilm.
Personally I’m happy to make the trade off, but I’m also happy to keep it for the cooler months. Or air conditioned locales.

The only other downside to the Downtown Dame wiggle dress, is that when I wiggle, my thighs touch. In this dress they are permanently squished together and were painfully chafed by the end of a long sweaty night. I’d highly recommend wearing shapewear shorts or those wide soft lace thigh garters designed to stop chafing.
( I actually might get some of those garters just because they’re cute)

BUT… I 100% still love the Downtown Dame dress.

why?
Because it curves in all the right places. It accommodates my not-inconsiderable augmented bust, while still fitting snugly at the waist. The kick pleat extends high enough that by some miracle I haven’t torn it, as I have every other kick pleat in my wardrobe. The belt is nice and wide, and the straps are adjustable. And honestly, I feel like a vinyl wrapped fetish Barbie when I wear it.

So that’s my honest opinion of the Deadly Dames Downtown Dames dress. If you want it in the fake leather finish be aware that it’s a trade off. Will you be comfortable? Unlikely. Will you look and feel like the hottest badass to walk the earth? Undoubtedly.

If it’s any help at all I’m 5.3″ tall and my measurements are 33″ –  25.5″ – 36.25″.  I’m wearing a size XS. If you’d like to read a plus size review of this dress there’s a fabulous one over at Curves to Kill.

PS: Don’t wear this at the beach.

An honest review of the Pinup Girl Clothing Downtown Dame dress from the Deadly Dames line. Find out what it's really like to wear this bubblegum pink faux leather wiggle dress.

An honest review of the Pinup Girl Clothing Downtown Dame dress from the Deadly Dames line. Find out what it's really like to wear this bubblegum pink faux leather wiggle dress.
An honest review of the Pinup Girl Clothing Downtown Dame dress from the Deadly Dames line. Find out what it's really like to wear this bubblegum pink faux leather wiggle dress.

Photos | Froger – otherwise known as the only man who can convince me to wear stilettos on sand

* I wasn’t paid, sponsored, given product or otherwise encouraged to write this review, just so ya know. *

With style and sass,

        Velvet DeCollete

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Make Do & Mend | Pinup Style with Vintage Fabric

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Make Do and Mend.

That’s what my Nana always tells me, usually as she’s unpicking old curtains, making overalls for the grandkids tearing around her garden. Vintage philosophies can be the best inspiration for vintage style, especially as a pinup on a budget!

I’m incredibly lucky to have a network of old ladies – friends of my Nana – who hand me down vintage fabric they no longer use. I design my clothes to make the most of the gifted yardage. This fifties floral two piece was cut around age stains on a length of 1950’s printed fabric.

Photographed on two different days at two locations, this post shows how lighting can change a photo from bright and crisp to soft and dreamy!

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The Outfit

Printed with rustic baskets overflowing with fruit and flowers, this fabric was made for sweet summer style. I chose a wide necked, fitted top ( which I personally find very flattering ) because there wasn’t enough fabric for sleeves! The simple silhouette displays the print nicely, so I made sure the basket motif would match up when the blouse was closed. Press studs and a tie front finish the blouse.

The circle skirt is cut in two panels and hemmed with synthetic horsehair braid for extra volume. A side zip and tap with novelty pink flower button allow for a tidy nipped in waist – my preferred silhouette for almost any occasion!

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The Styling

Matching accessories to a colour in the fabric makes choosing an outfit easy . I love the pink roses in this print, so that means all pink everything!

The sugar pink gloves have the cutest pleated trim, I think they’re from the 1950’s or 1960’s. The pink petticoat, cat eye sunglasses, hair flower and shoes are all modern made but worked so well with the colours and style of the outfit nonetheless!

Due to shooting forties style outfits on the same days, hair and makeup on both days were a mix of 1940’s and 1950’s. The half up – half down hairstyle was more successful, with fuller and better shaped rolls. No matter how hard I tried I just couldn’t recreate them for the updo when we re-shot! I find victory rolls in any style tricky due to my baby-fine, thin hair. There never seems to be enough of it.  ( I’m envious of all you thick haired ladies who can do multiple rolls and poodle ‘dos! )

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Top & Skirt | Velvet DeCollete
Gloves | Tock Tick Vintage
Flower | Coin Save
Shoes | Number One Shoe Warehouse
Petticoat | Online through a Facebook sale page

With Style & Sass,

            Velvet DeCollete

Posted by velvetdecollete in FASHION STORIES, PINUP, 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.33

enhance curves with ruffles

Fashion is like magic, you can create an illusion of something that’s not really there! Wear ruffles or frills around your bust, hips or bum to create a curvier silhouette or balance out your heavier areas.

Stylishly yours,

          Velvet  x

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Monday Style Tip No.31

cover regrowth or frizz with a cute beret

Cringing over your regrowth or fussing over flyaways? Cover a multitude of sins with an elegant beret a la Lauren Bacall in The Big Sleep. Or forget your hair and go watch The Big Sleep, it’s a classic and Bacall has a killer wardrobe.

Stylishly yours,

          Velvet  x

Posted by velvetdecollete in FASHION STORIES, OTHER, 0 comments