Saturday, February 27, 2010

DIY Framed Wedding Menu

This post for a framed wedding menu at the Ruffled wedding blog has a ton of cool possibilities. If you are comfortable with Microsoft word, you could pretty much use any background to create these. First you'd want to find the picture you want to add, then import it to add the border (here's a tutorial for word 2007). After that, you can split the page in half to make it fit into the frames mentioned in the Ruffled post. There are plenty of tutorials on how to work in word on the Microsoft How-to articles page.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Rockabilly Wedding Shoot

Rock n' Roll Bride is a great blog to follow. She just posted a wedding shoot after my own heart- rockabilly bowling alley. Seeing as I got married in a bowling alley, I l-o-v-e this post! I wish we could have afforded to get high-end pictures like these (taken by the talented Jessica Monnich), but we were lucky enough to be able to get some great memories, and to me that is all that really matters. With that said- get yourself on over to this blog post and drool a bit.

What's On Sale- 50s Red Chiffon Dress

Hey Curvy Gals! Twila Jean from The Mysterious Life of the Metropolitan Housewife blog is having a 40% off sale on some of the items in her etsy shop. One item you may be interested in in this late 50s red chiffon dress. The bust is 44" and waist is 34" and it is only $25.20! You can't see it right away, but the bodice has a gold net overlay. Snatch it up quick cause this dress is gonna go like hotcakes.

Talking about deals, I am in the middle of an intense paper frenzy for school, but I will try and post my next installment of Blog Specials this weekend, including those Troylings Alligator shoes I mentioned.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Ruffle Apron Giveaway (closed)

Wow, it is awesome giveaway day today, I guess. The wonderful blog The Apron Goddesses is giving away this AH-dorable shabby chic apron AnnieG Aprons and Bags. Be prepared to drool when you visit the apron site because there is a cowboy apron on there that is to die for! To enter: click here.

Victorian Clock Give-Away (closed)

Aged Vintage Papier: { Fabulous Victorian Clock Give-Away 

Would you like to win this lovely repro clock? Me too. I can't quite think of a way to fit it into the 20s-50s, so let's just go with- it's a cool clock and you can win it? I thought you might agree...

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Curling Your Hair with Paper

I'm not sure why I never ran across this before, but I have just been turned on to how to curl your hair with paper. According to various sources, you can reuse the paper too. How green! I found some instructions on how to use paper bags, which seem to be thick enough to handle multiple uses, so visit the links below for more info.

The Lost Art of the Paper Curl- Mother Earth News

Old-Fashioned Hair Styling: The Paper Curl- Associated Content

 (picture taken from

Friday, February 19, 2010

Tart Deco Blog Specials #2 (closed)

This batch is closed. Anything that wasn't SOLD is available in my etsy store, Tart Deco.

Here is the second set of items at a special blog price to my readers. These blog prices are 40-60% less than what they will be listed as on etsy later. Remember the rules I posted earlier, you have 3 days from posting to contact me to reserve the items at the blog price. After that they get added to my etsy shop at a higher, permanent price. As always, click on the pictures for a larger, more detailed view.

 Vintage 50s/60s Day Dress
 Size 14/16 (bust 43, waist 39, hips open)

Cotton dress with adorable folk art print, white ric rac trim and buttons that go halfway down the front. Handmade with  one pocket and tie belt in matching fabric. This dress is in great shape. It looks like there may have been belt loops that were cut off.

Blog price- $18, plus shipping SOLD

Vintage Demi Parure- Clip Earrings and Pin

This unsigned set looks like it has never been used. The gems are ocean blue and the finish is gold. Some of the foil has come off the back of the box, which looks to be the original display.

Blog price- $12, plus shipping

Vintage Green Gingham Apron

Knife pleat waistline and hand embroidered all over the place, this apron is a little more primary green than the picture suggests. Really great shape and waiting to be splattered with some home-cookin' :)

Blog price- $6, plus shipping

Vintage Lemon Yellow Sweater
Size 38 chest

Oh how I wish I fit into this sweater! Vintage hand loomed, full-fashioned acrylic sweater with pale yellow buttons. This item is like new.

Blog price- $8, plus shipping

So, that's group #2. You have until Feb. 22nd midnight, central time, to contact me to claim any of these goodies. First come, first serve and you may claim as many as you'd like (I will combine shipping for multiple items). Just remember that you have to pay within 3 days of your reserve listing or you lose the blog price, as per my posted instructions.

Happy Shopping!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Vintage Furs- the Dilemma

Recently there was a discussion on one of the blogs I follow about vintage furs. It got a little heated to be sure, but I didn't really feel that anyone offered a good alternative on what to do with the furs. Problem solved! Today I ran across Coats for Cubs which is sponsored by the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS). All of the furs received are sent to wildlife rehabilitators, who use the furs to warm and comfort orphaned and injured wildlife.The furry blanket becomes a surrogate mother to orphaned animals, reducing stress and giving comfort. If you mail the donation directly to HSUS you will be able to deduct the donation from your taxes. Visit the site for more details.

To make it a little easier, from now until April 22, you can drop off your donation at any Buffalo Exchange, a nationwide resale store. Just make sure to let them know it's for Coats for Cubs.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Tart Deco Blog Specials #1 (closed)

This batch is closed. Anything that wasn't SOLD is available in my etsy store, Tart Deco.

Here is my first installment of items at a special blog price to my readers. These blog prices are 40-60% less than what they will be listed as on etsy later. Remember the rules I posted earlier, you have 3 days to contact me to reserve the items at the blog price. After that they get added to my etsy shop at a higher, permanent price. Sorry about the pictures this time. I had to use my husband's camera that I'm not as familiar with, but I wanted to get these posted asap. As always, click on the pictures for a larger, more detailed view.

2 pairs Park Avenue seamless stockings
Size 9 1/2-10, in box.
New Old Stock (never used on original cards). One pair is tan, the other is slightly darker.
Blog price- $6, plus shipping

Vintage 50s Pattern: Simplicity 1682-
Size 12 (bust 32)
Pattern has been cut, but is complete with instructions. The envelope shows some wear, but the pattern is fine.
Blog price- $4 SOLD

(* For an extra $1, I will include instructions on how to resize vintage patterns. Let me know when you contact me if you would like to add this)

Vintage 60s Pattern: McCalls 7004
Size 14 (bust 34)
Pattern is factory folded and includes instructions. Envelope shows some wear, but pattern is fine.
Blog price- $3, plus shipping

(* For an extra $1, I will include instructions on how to resize vintage patterns. Let me know when you contact me if you would like to add this)

Vintage Mixed Fruit
10 pieces of various fruit like cherries, pears, and apples, never been used. The pieces are roughly 1 inch round and 1 inch high (depending on the fruit). Most have their wrapped wire stems, but some do not.
Blog price- $3 a bag, plus shipping

I have 4 bags available.

Vintage Vanity Fair Pink Peignoir Set
Label says size Medium, but sleeveless nightie can accommodate up to a size 42" chest. The short sleeve robe is basically an open size that closes with a button.
This set is in extremely good shape, almost like new. It has adorable lace flower accents (see pictures below for more details and better color view).
Blog price- $10 SOLD

So, that's group #1. You have until Feb. 18th midnight, central time, to contact me to claim any of these goodies. First come, first serve and you may claim as many as you'd like (I will combine shipping for multiple items). Just remember that you have to pay within 3 days of your reserve listing or you lose the blog price, as per my posted instructions.

Happy Shopping!

Milwaukee Boutique Plus Size Model Contest

Yeah for Milwaukee! Local upcoming business Boutique Larrieux, an upscale retailer offering an extensive selection of contemporary designer apparel and accessories for women ranging from sizes 12-24, is looking for a new face to represent their store. The winner gets all kinds of goodies:
  • Image consultancy complete with a makeover including a wardrobe valued at $500; and beauty advising from a M.A.C cosmetics makeup artist
  • An appearance as the first Boutique Larrieux Beauty on NBC TMJ-4’s The Morning Blend
  • VIP Access to the March 2010 launch of Boutique Larrieux
  • The ability to distribute gift certificates to fellow plus size fashionistas
  • Opportunity to serve as a Boutique Larrieux fit model
  • Feature in an upcoming Boutique Larrieux photo shoot
The winner has to live in the greater Milwaukee, WI area or close enough to travel to the city on a regular basis. You can enter here. Contest ends Feb. 25th, so get cracking my plus-size beauties!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Old Radio Shows

Do you like to listen to old radio shows? I sure do. I found a neat resource today called the Old Time Radio Network ( that lets you download real audio files to listen to. They cover radio shows from the 30s to the 50s like My Favorite Husband, Have Gun, Will Travel, and Fibber McGee and Molly. If you are handy, you can find ram to MP3 converters and make yourself some cds to listen to. According to the site's legal notices the copyrights on the shows they host have lapsed, so you you should be safe.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

What's On Sale- eShakti Custom Clothes

How would you like to have clothing custom made for you at ready-to-wear prices? I will give you a moment to catch your breath after jumping up and down shouting "Me! Me!."

I have been made aware of a website called through the wonderful blog The Give-Away Diva. I visited eShakti's site and was surprised to find numerous retro inspired fashions, especially in the day dress category. The best part- they go up to a 26W (53" bust, 47" waist)! Their prices are affordable, usually around $50-60. Here are a few of the retro cuties I found:

Friday, February 12, 2010


My new obsession is flappers. This usually happens when I start a new music project. My newest is Bootless Betties, a 1920s-40s hot jazz vocal trio. I have been reading a plethora of books about these fun ladies and I've come to the conclusion that the social atmosphere after WWI was very similar to the atmosphere after WWII, especially in the regard of women workers during the war. This has peaked my interest enough that I might incorporate it into my masters thesis on women in rockabilly music. Stay tuned for more on that...

Listen to 1920s and 30s music online at Radio Dismuke.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Vintage Ribbon Work and Tutorials

I am an avid reader of the FIDM Museum Blog. They have gorgeous posts about various museum pieces and projects like this 1920s Boué Soeurs dress. Isn't it gorgeous? There is more information about this beautiful dress and the sisters that founded Boué Soeurs on their blog, so be sure to visit.

You can also view more of their work on the Fashion Spot forum here.
Notice the detail on the shoulder? This particular style is a mixture of handcrafted ribbon work and lace called Filet Boué, a floral patterned lace worked on a mesh ground developed by the Boué Soeurs own lacemakers. If you click on the picture, you can get a larger, clearer view. Go ahead , click on it, I'll wait...

Aren't you glad you clicked? Details and trims like this  just don't happen in mainstream clothing anymore and it makes me sad. This is a project you could do while watching a movie or your favorite TV show. There are books about how to do ribbon work, but I also found a couple of tutorials online to get you started.

Hey vintage brides! Wouldn't this be a beautiful; and easy way to embellish your gown or accessories? You could also incorporate something borrowed or something blue into this trim detail.

Have fun and be sure to post about the finished project and leave us a link here!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Vintage Valentines to Print

I ran across these while perusing a nifty blog I found called Pink Cupcake Vintage. Click on them for a larger image. You can print them out on card stock for an old school feel (plus they last longer).

See all of them here.

UPDATE: Sweetheartville just posted some of her own valentines to print as well as links to more. No Pattern Required also posted a few of her own. Yipee!!

My Bettie Page Interview

A little while back I blogged about being interviewed for a Bettie Page documentary at a Chicago sci-fi convention. Well, it's been posted!

Hey, I sound pretty smart. I really need to smile more though. I guess I get very serious when I am thinking. Hope you like it!

What's On Sale- Repro Cloche Hat

I found this great repro Vintage felt hat
on for only $14.80.

What? What?!?

Also available in black.
What ho?!? Is this another cloche hat in navy (and black) that I spy on the same website for the same price?!?

These hats are SO mine...

Monday, February 8, 2010

What's On Sale- My Vintage Collection

Every once in a while my house starts to look like my parent's house growing up. I actually thought to myself today- "I should save this box from the 70s because someone might want it. It might be worth something." Scary!

When I feel like this I start purging. This is where it gets fun for you!

I am going to start adding things to my Tart Deco etsy store for sale soon. However, I will be posting the items on this blog 3 days before at a special price just for you! If you want it you just have to contact me and I will list it on etsy as a reserve for you. You will have 3 days to purchase your reserve or it gets relisted at a higher price and the special price goes bye-bye.

What will I be listing? EVERYTHING! And most of it will be vintage or recycled vintage: Aprons, hankies, hats, shoes, dresses, jewelry, sewing supplies, etc. My husband will also be going through his stash of vintage and repro military items and collectibles.

(pic of me and my husband selling at a fair when I last felt like purging. This time there is MUCH more)

Shake, Rattle and Rock

See Fats Domino save the day in the 50s movie Shake, Rattle and Rock. If any of you remember the kitschy 1994 movie with the same title that starred Renee Zellweger, this is the original that movie was based on.

Click on the screen at the right to watch the whole movie online at!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

If You Like Janis- You'll LOVE Lorrie Collins!

For those of you who like Janis Martin and Wanda Jackson, you should know about Lorrie Collins of The Collins Kids. Considered Rockabilly Royalty, she was Ricky Nelson's first girlfriend, on TV and off. She sure looked sweet but had a voice with incredible warmth and power. She tended to stir up a little controversy because she would sing the same words her male counterparts did when she covered their songs. All of this was done in the most stunning 50s outfits.

It is unfortunate that she took time off of music because she got married at 17, but this is too often the story with female performers of the time. It was assumed that women merely dabbled in whatever they did for work to keep them busy until they had children, whether they agreed or not. Her early departure from performing also caused a rift between her and her brother Larry, the other half of The Collins Kids and a lightening-fast guitarist. In 1997 they reunited and began to perform again, lucky for us, and they still perform at various Rock n' Roll festivals around the world.

The best collection of theirs is Hop, Skip and Jump, which is pretty definitive. Unfortunately it is usually pretty expensive too. I would suggest getting Rockin-est because it is a decent overview of their hits.

Also, if my posts about female rockabilly singers has piqued your interest and you want to learn more, pick up a copy of The Women of Rockabilly: Welcome to the Club by Beth Harrington. It was a PBS special chock full of interviews and footage. I was lucky enough to buy a copy when it was still $24, which still happens from time to time. You can also rent it from Blockbuster online and Netflix, as well as some libraries.

You can view Lorrie Collins segment of the documentary on youtube. It is almost 10 minutes long, but worth it :)

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Janis Martin- The Female Elvis

Out of all the rockabilly singers in the 1950s, the one I relate to the most is Janis Martin. For one, we have the same birthday (March 27). She was known for her powerful voice and equally powerful performances. She had a sweet schoolgirl look, but a hellraiser attitude with a deep love for 50s R&B. She also didn't seem too concerned with what people thought of her, she followed her heart even when everyone tried to pressure her otherwise.

Hard to believe that she was only 15 when she did most of her recording, isn't it? Oddly enough, she was one of the only female rockabilly singers that got support in her singing career from a major label. So much support that she was dubbed The Female Elvis. It was the fact that she got married and pregnant that ended her career in the 50s. She eventually got back on track in the 70s and rode the rockabilly revival that started in the 80s. Unfortunately, Janis died from cancer in 2007, but she was performing up until the end.

If you aren't familiar with Janis' music, pick up at least one cd for your collection. She was one of the best.

Friday, February 5, 2010

50s Vintage Perfection

You know how sometimes you come across a vintage dress that makes you want it, even though it would never fit you in a million years and you can't afford it, so you just keep a copy of the picture and use it as your desktop background for a while, letting a little sob out every once in a while because it is so beautiful?

Naw. Me neither.

But if I did, this dress would be one of those dresses:

Available in the TimelessVixenVintage store on etsy for $375. Every inch of that dress is worth it as it is in gorgeous shape, but unfortunately I have new tires to buy. Plus with a 34" bust, I could only dream of fitting into this lovely.

Hey, you're getting drool on your keyboard... oh, wait- that's me!

Vintage Hair Tutorials

I just discovered the user PinUpSweetShoppe on Youtube. She has the most adorable tutorials, including this one on how to tackle the "day after" look. Make sure and check out her Victory Rolls tutorials too!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Apron Giveaway (closed)

For those of you who didn't win my vintage giveaway, here is an adorable apron giveaway at the From Cathy With Love blog. It ends TODAY So hurry up and enter!

Vintage Giveaway Winner

Hi everyone! This was by far my biggest giveaway with 96 comments. I also jumped up to 93 followers! That means I will be having another giveaway soon when I reach 100 followers (another blog milestone), so keep your eyes peeled.

I was so happy with the results that I have decided to have a special Valentine's Day Sale in my Tart Deco etsy shop for anyone that entered the giveaway: 25% off anything in the store until Feb. 10th. When you make a purchase, just put the words "blog sale 25" and the name or email you entered my giveaway with in the comments to the seller section and wait for me to send you a new invoice with the discounted price. If you have any questions or issues, let me know.

Okay, on to the winner:

Andy is the winner! According to his comment, he is doing this as a Valentine's Day gift for his vintage-loving girlfriend. What a lucky gal! Andy has been contacted and has CONFIRMED. Congrats Andy!

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