Tag: Vivien of Holloway

It’s only Vivien of Holloway but I like it…

My brother married his lovely fiancée at the beginning of June. They tied the knot in Portmeirion in North Wales, which if you don’t know it, is a stunning location. It was built by eccentric architect Clough Williams Ellis, whose vision for an Italianate village led him to build in this charming valley in North Wales.

It was the setting for 1960s TV series The Prisoner, starring Patrick McGoohan, which has become something of a cult classic.

The wedding was the first big event we’d been to as a family of three and my first chance to dress up post-baby! It was a lot of driving but we were very excited to stay in the beautiful Portmeirion Hotel (just behind Patrick in the photo above!) and explore the village together.


The village is beautiful, quirky, charming and really has to be visited, because every nook and cranny holds a delight.

But enough about that. On to the real reason for my post: the dress. And no, I don’t mean the bride’s dress. Hers was very nice but it wasn’t vintage inspired. I decided to go for a Tiki theme as I’d been asked to play my ukulele in the wedding ceremony. I looked through all my favourite websites but this beauty from Vivien of Holloway (http://www.vivienofholloway.com )caught my eye.

I’m a big fan of Vivien of Holloway (my wedding dress was VofH!) and this dress didn’t disappoint. The only thing I find difficult is the sizing. They don’t marry up to high street sizes and you have to try and order from your measurements – but mine never seem to match a size that works on me so I have a lot of ordering and returning by mail order until I find what fits.

The fabric was great – nice weight cotton mix that hung beautifully. I paired it with a green petticoat (also VofH) and some wedges from White Stuff few years back. I find having a baby on your arm/shoulder/hip makes most jewellery impractical these days, so I decided against the bamboo bangles and silver pendant I’d like to have worn! I did of course, put a flower from Claire at Uptown Curls in my hair!

The fit was great, it nipped me in at the waist and was snug across the bust. The halterneck, although not adjustable, worked perfectly. Best of all, there was yards and yards of lovely full circle skirt to skim out over my petticoat.

Later on in the evening I got to sing a number with the band – that’s a pint of water, I promise!

Lovely sister and me, posing in front of the stunning views.

I think I carried out my hula girl duties satisfactorily and a good time was had by all.

It is with hazy summer memories I say:

It’s only vintage but I like it!

It’s only a Wedding Dress but I like it!

I have a little announcement to make!


I’m married! (Although you may have picked that up!)

The Dr and I tied the knot on the 31st of March and had a blissful day. I have lots of things to tell you about the day but I’m going to spread it out over a few blog posts, starting today with the most important thing: my outfit!

I tried on various dresses. I tried, I really did. After a distressing experience in a bridal shop a few years back I vowed I would not set foot in one again. On said occasion I was a bridesmaid and the assistant in the shop insisted on dropping dresses over my head that were several sizes too small (‘just to see’), shoved her hands up my skirt to help my into the dress and then paraded me around in front of the shop window with half my back hanging out of the dress. Or at least that’s how it felt to me. I was much bigger back then, had zero body confidence and didn’t own any dresses…

Luckily, 2016 finds me several sizes smaller and much more in tune with my feminine side. I didn’t visit any bridal boutiques, I met with Gilly from Gilly-Leigh’s Vintage and PreLoved Wedding Gowns and tried on a few of her vintage gowns but, as is the nature of vintage, she just didn’t have anything that was quite right at the time. She was lovely though and has an ever expanding range of dresses, so give her a look if that’s your bag.

I’ve been following Vivien of Holloway for some time now on Facebook and loved their bridal range. I sent for and tried on both the Grace and Duchess dresses.

Vivien of Holloway Duchess
Vivien of Holloway Grace

After some deliberation (and sending my mum selfies in both dresses) I decided Grace, with her snug waistline, wrap detailing and partial sleeves was a more ‘grown up’ look. I also thought Grace would show off the fact that, with a bit of help, I can have a tiny waist!

I should admit at this point that before I even bought a dress I had purchased these delicate beauties from Irregular Choice.


I later relented, admitted I couldn’t really walk in them and they might make me just fractionally taller than the Dr, and bought the same style of shoes in a kitten heel.

My next idea I cherry-picked from blogger Georgina Horne as she looked so lovely on her big day.


I fell in love with George’s petticoat and decided to add a splash of colour to my outfit in the same way. Luckily the fabric in my Irregular Choice shoes perfectly matched the teal petticoat I bought from Vivien of Holloway.


The dress and petticoat covered my ‘Something new’ and ‘Something blue’ and I figured a simple string of pearls might be a good look, so the vintage pearls that the Dr’s Mum gave me covered my ‘Something old’.


I borrowed a ring from my sister and completed the quartet.

The next question was what shape wear would give me the smooth lines I desired. I’ve lost lots of weight, but still have some jelly rolls on my tummy which get in the way of lots of clothing choices.


This Waspie Glamour Nouveau from What Katie Did did a perfect job and was relatively comfortable. By the end of the night I was feeling the need to remove it, I will admit, but it’s shape wear – it needs to be snug and it did make me look very smooth.

So here’s the overall look! More on hair and make up to come!

I’ve only had a few finished images from lovely photographer Flora Westbrook but they look amazing and they show off my outfit very well! I’ll be sharing more, have no doubt!




It is with something old, new, borrowed and blue I say:

It’s only vintage but I like it!

It’s only SS16 but I like it…

It’s that time of year when all the clothing companies announce their new ranges. We actually had a quite a nice sunny Sunday this weekend and the Dr and I had a quick walk around the Common. The softly thawing ground smelled of Spring and gave me a little bit of hope for warmer weather and skimpier clothes!

The following is a quick round up of my favourite items from my favourite companies!image

This Caterina Vintage Swing Dress from Collectif (https://www.collectif.co.uk/collectif-vintage-caterina-vintage-swing-dress-p-vss160812-c-navy.html) would be a fab wardrobe staple, perfect for work, or lovely dressed up with heels and a nice bag in the evening. I’d get lots of wear out of it!image

Absolutely adore this range from Lady V, modelled here by gorgeous George (www.fullerfigurefullerbust.com). This bright spring pattern is perfect and I like the nice broad shoulder straps. Looks very comfy – and stylish!image

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – I’m a sucker for a fun print and this ticks that box! Fun, fruity and fabulous, I think you could have lots of fun in this! (https://ladyvlondon.com/Tutti-Fruity-Phoebe-Dress/#.VrjzyMSQGrU)


This Kitty Anemone dress from Vivien of Holloway is lovely in teal. The pattern is soft and works well with its different shades of bluey-green. (http://www.vivienofholloway.com/women-c70/dresses-c10/kitty-anemone-teal-p2081)image

i don’t think you have to know who Milly Molly Mandy is to love this dress – but it helps! Lindy Bop have done us proud again, for just £35 this Bletchley Swing Dress (http://www.lindybop.co.uk/dresses-c1/swing-jive-dresses-c3/bletchley-red-stripe-shirt-swing-dress-p2596) can be yours… imageI’m a big fan of mustard clothes and I don’t own enough of them. I have this dress in a  another colour way and can confirm its lovely soft cotton and a great fit… Lindy Bop’s Ionia Tea Dress at £30 (http://www.lindybop.co.uk/dresses-c1/tea-day-dresses-c2/ionia-mustard-polka-dot-tea-dress-p2647).


I don’t get on very well with this style of skirt but I might be tempted to try again having spotted this amazingly cute Tippi candy striped skirt from Lindy Bop (http://www.lindybop.co.uk/bottoms-c21/skirts-c5/tippi-ice-cream-stripe-swing-skirt-p2556). It would be so adorable with a just a plain white top and some pastel flats. Really must lose half a stone and try and make this work!

Some very exciting stuff out there, these are just a few of my favourites, and I’d definitely recommend you have a look at the websites of these companies as there are many more delights waiting for you… Happy Spring!

It is with a longing for Spring I say:

It’s only vintage but I like it!

It’s only a Wedding but I like it…

My wedding for the record. My wedding which is in less than 8 weeks. This weekend my Mum, my little cousin Molly, my sister and my oldest friend came to me for the day. We ate cake and cookies (baked by Molly and I that morning) we had our hair done and our make up done and we tried on dresses, petticoats and jewellery together for the first time.


It’s a scary moment when all the things you have sat and ordered on wet and windy evenings on your own, suddenly materialise and are put together in the right order. You hope you chose the right colour, the right length, the right material and that it fits and works as a whole.


And do you know? It did. Almost all of it.

The hardest job I am having is not showing you the photos of all of us, dressed up, made up and grinning together. My bridesmaids are the loveliest, and most perfect ladies ever. They look so good together and even though none of them is that into vintage they have all committed to full circle skirts, petticoats and retro hairstyles.

It is with excitement I say:

It’s only vintage but I like it!

It’s only the Festive Season but I like it…

Do you know I am so loving being back in the UK and having seasons? Literally, consciously loving it. And of course, we are fast approaching the party season. That time when there are lots of social events. Well, if I’m honest, I’ll have a couple of things and none of them very big or posh. But still. I’ll have a work do, and, not having worked there very long, I kind of want to make a statement. The work do is a chance (in my mind anyway) to show the side of you that you don’t really show so much at work. I want to be vintage, I want to look nice, I want to be me.

So it was time for a little online shopping. This is my round up of frocks for the party season – hold on to your hats!

For starters, I’d head over to What Katie Did and grab myself some shapewear – probably this underbust corset to give me a nice smooth silhouette. ( http://www.whatkatiedid.com/product/687/vintage-1950%92s-satin-glamour-zip-underbust-girdle)


Collectif ( www.collectif.co.uk ) has a few treats in store for us, of course:

 Dolores dress polka red new

This Dolores red polka dot wiggle dress is fun and perfect for parties.

 Dolores Doll Cherry Stem Black New

I love, love, love the Dolores Cherry Stem and I could wear a big poofy petticoat too!

As for Lindy Bop (http://www.lindybop.co.uk ), this Grace swing dress in cranberry is so cute with the little bow! It reminds me of a line from Mad Men about a Joan Holloway dress where her bow makes her look ‘like a Christmas gift’. I mean who doesn’t want Joan as their style icon?


I also adore this Myrtle halterneck – it would seem I’m all about the red this year! The shape of that bust and the button detail is just delish!


I’m also drawn to this black silk number called Gina. I’ve never a had black dress but this looks so luxuriant – I’m sure I’d feel a million dollars in it…

Lindy Bop Gina

Of course, if I was looking to spend a bit more, I’d love a Vivian Of Holloway (http://www.vivienofholloway.com ) dress and this black satin with purple stars number would be very charming.

VoH purple stars

I thought writing this post would help me find a dress, but actually i think it’s made it harder to choose! What would you go for? Or have you spotted some more delights on your travels?

It is with a dress-addled brain I say:

It’s only vintage but I like it!