Saturday, January 30, 2010

Carnival Wedding

This carnival wedding is a little off what I normally post, but when I saw it on the Ruffled wedding blog it was so beautiful that I had to include it. This theme could easily be tweaked to be more steampunk or burlesque. You could even go Golden 30s Hollywood or 20s Ziegfield Follies.

Please go to the Ruffled blog for more pics and info on this amazing cake!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Love Year 'Round

Valentine's Day is coming soon. Personally, my husband and I do wonderful things for each other year 'round, so we don't really celebrate Valentine's Day per se, but it is still nice to take the time and reflect on my relationship with him.

The pictures in this post pretty much tell it all. We met at a WWII reenactment and it sounds like a story from the movies: we saw each other during the day and were too shy to talk. At the dance that same night, our friends intervened and got us to talk to each other, which we did for at least an hour straight until the end of the dance (it's hard to tell how long it was because I was in another world!).

1 year later we got engaged at the same WWII dance event and 8 months after that we were married!

My husband is my best friend and partner in crime. We tell each other we love each other many times every day and I ALWAYS look forward to seeing him.

Sure, we've only been married a short time and I know that the only thing that is constant in a marriage is change, but we are so grateful to have found each other in this big ole world that somehow, I think we'll be allright...

Whats On Sale? Pettipants for Valentine's Day!

Wowza- love these pettipants. I have a couple pairs and I wear them when I know I'll be twirling or just to give me a little extra sass. The ones pictured are available at one of my favorite etsy stores called Cheapfrillz in the pettipants and panties section, along with a dozen or so more lovelies like this.

They range in price from $20-39 and the sizes are basically medium, but they stretch to go up to a waist size of 48-50" and leg size of 27-30". I would suggest using your thigh measurement to see if they would work for you. If you need a bigger (or smaller) size, you can request a custom order through Cheapfrillz etsy store. Please allow up to 6 weeks for custom work.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Vintage Chores- Washing the Dishes

For those of us that still wash our dishes by hand, the nifty blog Behind the Curtain has a 2 part post on how women did this tedious chore back in the day. Part one can be found here and part two is coming soon! Can't wait to read about the products they used!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

ReMix Vintage Repro Shoes on Sale

Want these lovely shoes? They are normally 25-50% more, but Amazon is having a sale. There are about 13 pairs of Remix Vintage Reproduction Shoes on sale right now. If you take care of these lovelies they can last a very long time, just like the originals.

Monday, January 25, 2010

One Big Vintage Giveaway! (closed)

I think it is providence that my one-year blog anniversary is so close to when I am reaching my goal of 75 blog followers. Fate wants me to do a giveaway, that's for sure. I promised you a vintage homemaker's giveaway and here it is!

The Prize:
-Adorable vintage gingham-checked apron
-Matching hair flower made with recycled vintage trinkets
-Vintage recipe book "Dining For Lovers"
-Vintage hanky
-Vintage 50s pattern (I will choose from my personal collection to get as close to the winner's size as possible)
-Printed directions on how to resize vintage patterns
-Plus, I will throw in a few other fun surprise vintage items from my own collection

How to Enter:
1. Leave a comment here telling me why you are interested in living vintage. Your email address must be included in the post or available in your profile for me to contact you or you can't win (see the note below)! This is Mandatory, do this first.

2. If you are a blog follower, leave another comment letting me know for an extra entry.

3. You can get yet another entry by joining the Tart Deco facebook group. Make sure to leave an extra comment for your extra entry!

4. You can get TWO extra entries by posting about this on your blog. Please leave me 2 extra comments with the link to the post in at least one of the comments.

The giveaway ends Wednesday, February 3rd at midnight (central time) and the winner will be posted the next day. The giveaway is for US residents, but I will include international if you are willing to pay for shipping.

Good luck!

** QUICK NOTE- I've been reading some of the responses and they are really great. Thanks! However, when I click on the people so far who didn't leave their email in their response, most of them have their profiles private or don't have their emails visible to the public, which means I can't contact them and they can't win. So to reiterate- please leave your email in your comment or make it visible in your profile. If you are worried about spammers write it like this- soandso (at) yahoo (dot) com- and you'll be safe. If you have already left a comment without your email, you can delete your original 1st comment and leave it again.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Fixing Up the House- Vintage Floors

For any of you DIYers out there working on fixing up your home, the Retrorenovation blog just posted pictures of floor samples from the 50s to help you match to current options. Nifty, eh?

Friday, January 22, 2010

Vintage Dream Part II

Back in October when I moved, I wrote a post about some amazing things I found in a box in our attic. The most amazing was a 1920s flapper dress. As you may have read in my previous post, I had all kinds of glorious thoughts of laundering the dress and fixing it up. Well, after letting the dress air out for the past few months and getting numerous second opinions, I have come to the conclusion that it is beyond repair and too delicate to wash.

So my next step is to try and make a pattern from the dress so I can reconstruct it. I can't bear to take it apart. I even sat down with seam ripper in hand and got physically ill when I got close to the dress with it. I feel like I am ripping into a piece of someone's personal history...

I figure I have 2 options:
1. Lay the dress flat and trace around the major pieces and guesstimate on the others by sight.
2. Try and find a pattern (vintage or modern) that is similar and modify the pattern.

Either way I am looking at numerous mock-ups to make sure I get it right. Unless someone else has a better suggestion... anyone?

BTW, there are more pics of this dress on my flickr account.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

What's On Sale- Mode Merr Rockabilly Skirts

All Mode Merr skirts are $50 for 1 week only starting 1/22 and ends 1/28! Snatch these puppies up ladies!

While you are at it, check out the adorable tops too.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

One- Year Anniversary!

I have been blogging for one year today! So much has happened over the last year:getting married, moving, restarting my rockabilly band... It's a wonder I sleep at all :)  Thanks so much for reading my blog!! I will be posting an anniversary giveaway in the next day or so, so check back soon!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Diary of a Vintage Girl: A glamorous giveaway (closed)

Diary of a Vintage Girl: A glamorous giveaway

Want to win a beautiful set of vintage inspired lingerie from Kiss me Deadly? I thought so. Visit the link above for the info.

Searching the Patent Archives

ZipZapKap is one of my new favorite blogs! She is oh so clever with her post about searching the patent archives for old patterns.

PS I found her through an interview post on Gertie's New Blog for Better Sewing which also happens to have a giveaway for ZipZapKap's pattern etsy shop(giveaway closed).

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

As Seen in Vogue Giveaway (closed)

The Vintage Traveler blog is having a nifty giveaway right now for a copy of As Seen in Vogue. This is a great book that you can also find on [because I am gonna win this one :)]

What's On Sale- Rockabilly Wedge Shoes

Oh my these are adorable! They look comfy too. Wish they fit me... sigh... Here's the skinny on these shoes:

PranceandSwagger on etsy

Circa: 1960's/70's
Label: Magdesian's California
Condition: Excellent, never worn
Notes: a couple small marks from
Size: 6.5 M
Insole: 9.5", Heel: 2.5", Width: 3"

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Sewing Tips- Scalloped Slip Tutorial

Gertie's New Blog for Better Sewing has a super easy, but lovely tutorial on how to create a scalloped edge slip in a vintage style like the one shown in this pic. While you are there, make sure to view her other tutorials because they are super keen!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Pattern Storage

I am in the process of setting up my sewing room at my new apartment. I have A LOT of patterns, like 300 or so, and many of them are vintage so I needed to devise a way to store and organize that wouldn't put too much stress on the patterns or my pocketbook.

After a few false starts, I finally figured out that I can fit 30-45 patterns, including the larger vintage Vogue patterns, in the large Sterlite Show-off bins. These bins are made for hanging file folders, but they are 10" wide and 15.5" tall so they work great! I got mine at Target for $4.99 each. I am sure there are other brands that will work just as well, you just have to be sure they are at least 8" wide for the larger pattern envelopes.

Want to shop online for these? Amazon has them
for slightly more, but no driving...

The Amazing Shirtdress Part II

A while ago I wrote a post on shirtdresses and how every vintage gal needs to have at least one or two. Well, today I found a wonderful web site called Clothesline: The Online Journal of Costume and Dress that talks about the history of the shirtdress, or the shirtwaist dress as the author calls it.

Incredibly detailed, with pictures as the one seen in this posting, the web article traces the history of the frock from the 1900s and on. I especially like the section on the "New Look" waistline (referred to lovingly as the gasp waistline) and what was used to achieve it. If you like vintage fashion, get on over there and read, read, read!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Flappers and Rosie?

I have this thing- I LOVE history and I am always adding new projects to my plate. In fact, my newest project is a 1920s/30s vocal trio called Bootless Betties that sings hot jazz, or flapper music with three singers, ukulele and whatever percussion instruments we can strap to ourselves (think knee cymbals).

Whenever I start a new project, or twenty, I always do a ton of research. Of course, I am under the pretense that others might be interested too. It's one of the reasons I started this blog. I really love posting to it and showing off all of the neat tidbits I have picked up in my research on rockabilly and the 1950s. I'd like to do the same for the 1920s/30s info I have amassed recently too.

Which leaves me with a slight dilemma- to me, the Tart Deco blog would be a perfect place to add more eras. The name makes sense (Tart Deco- Vintage Glamour & Retro Living), I was always teetering on the edge of including vintage info outside of Rockabilly, and it would be less confusing to me to have the one blog. However, I don't want to alienate my followers who read this blog specifically for rockabilly/50s and feel like they might have to wade through decades they don't care about.

SO- I have created a really short survey (4 questions- easy peasy) to get your opinion. (edit: I fixed the link)

If I branch out the timeline for the blog it would be 1920s-60s, covering Art Deco, flappers, WWII, and rockabilly subjects. I would also modify my sidebar labels to group the posts together and I have some questions on the survey about that too.


PS My one-year anniversary is coming soon, so keep an eye out for a neato giveaway!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

What's On Sale- Lace Marilyn Top

A few months ago I wrote a What's On Sale post about the online shop PacificPlex. I revisited the site today and saw this insanely cute, but sultry Sheer Black Lace top (which goes up to a 50" bust!) for only $19.99. Seriously?!? Yes.

By the way, doesn't this shirt remind you of one Marilyn wore in this picture?

Friday, January 8, 2010

Sewing Tips- Resizing Patterns

It is pretty rare that I don't have to resize a pattern, modern or vintage. I also don't like to cut my patterns. So I kill 2 birds with 1 stone and trace my pattern on tracing or parchment paper with pencil. That allows me to make any changes I need, including adjustments after I make a mock-up (which I always do with a pattern I haven't used or if I have changed weight). I usually get my paper in large tablets at an office supply store, which costs around $15-20. However, I have found a roll of tracing paper (2 ft by 12.5 ft) for only $12.96 (free shipping) on Cost Central.

Some people also swear by using Swedish Tracing Paper which you are supposed to be able to sew through. I have never used it myself, but it basically looks like a slightly thicker version of the parchment paper. I found a 29 in. by 30 ft roll at CreateForLess for $15.64 (includes shipping).

Finally, you can buy a roll of pattern tracing paper (as shown in the picture) that is 21 in. by 77yds at Clotilde for $12.98 (includes shipping).

Happy patterning!

What's On Sale- Vintage Shelf Paper & Edging

(pic from the posy blog)

My husband and I recently moved into a duplex built in 1884 and I became obsessed with trying to recreate the historical feel of the apartment. Of course, there is only so much one can do if you don't own, but there are some temporary things that don't take too much time or money. One of those things is shelf paper and shelf edging. This is especially cool for us because we have a big pantry with lots of shelves. Shelf paper is very similar to contact paper available now, but it sometimes came with a built in edge to hang over the front of the shelf, which is the look I love. You can also find the edging itself. Retrorenovation blog has a nice post that gives an overview of edging, including some sources.

I have found a few gems on etsy:

15 feet

Also available in yellow/grey

(If you have a lot of shelves and need more, you can get 3 more packages at $9 at marvamost)

15 feet

15 feet

Magpie Lovely $50 Gift Card GUEST GIVEAWAY!!!! (closed)

Magpie Lovely $50 Gift Card GUEST GIVEAWAY!!!!

Grosgrain Blog is having a lovely giveaway for a $50 gift card to Magpie Lovely. There a some very feminine shirts that are eco friendly, as well as some rosette necklaces.

The selections are more on the softer side of rockabilly, but I am sure you can see how beautiful the shirt above would look with a full circle skirt, yes?

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Vintage Magazine giveaway (closed)

Super quick- Couture Allure is having a vintage magazine giveaway but you can only enter through tonight (1/7) because the winner is picked tomorrow. Sorry about the last minute post but I just found out about it today myself. Hurry up and enter!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Sewing Tips- Preshrinking Fabric

 (pic from

I have found that many people who try and live a vintage or retro life end up having to become someone who sews. Let's face it- how many of us can actually fit into the tiny clothes that have made it it intact through the years, not to mention the ones that haven't made it and need some TLC. So I have decided to start a new label of sewing tips to make it easier for me to tag these gems as I find them.

On that note, Gertie over at Gertie's New Blog for Better Sewing has just posted about how to pre-shrink fabrics. If you are a new sewer and don't know why or how to do this, get yourself over to this discussion asap!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

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