Friday, July 2, 2010

Living Dolls - Miss July 2010

Well, it is my birthday this month, so I thought it was a good oportunity to nab the Miss July title for myself !! Dont think me conceited or anything, as I mingle in various vintage circles people are always surprised to find out that I am 'Alice Jean's', so I thought it might be somewhat helpful to share a little about myself here, so that people know me and can say 'hi' when they meet me ( I am also partial to hugs and kisses !!!)........ (my apologies to those who read part of this interview on Queens of Vintage not long ago.....)

What does 'vintage' mean to you?

Anything pre 1965

What was it that first prompted your interest in vintage culture?

As far as the 1950's goes, I have always loved the joyfulness and sentimentality of the music (brings back memories of growing up listening to my Nanna and Dad's records) but the clincher was undoubtedly at a girlfriends sleepover in grade 5 when we watched 'Back to The Future'....all I wanted to do was go back in time. One of the best movies ever, fanciful though it may be. I also grew up on vintage movie matinees and fell in love with all the sophistication, beauty and glamour there.....I guess my 1950's influences are many and varied, but they were all something I could identify with !

I also became OBSESSED with Anne of Green Gables (different era I know, but still vintage!!!) throughout my teenage years and completely felt like I had been born in the wrong decade. I yearned for the romance and culture of community that is so vividly depicted in the books. I guess those books had a big impact upon my love of history and historic culture too.

What is your favourite era, and do you 'live it' every day? In what ways?

I live the 1950's every day as much as I am able. I dress and do my hair up in an attempt at the glamorous 'Betty Draper' housewife look....I do have some concessions to modernity – my dishwasher and clothes washer, good heating and air-conditioning, computer and a comfortable 'everyday' car. But pretty much all the visual aesthetics are 1950's. Also aesthetically speaking, the 1950's would have to be my favourite era (although I love history in any form) – 50's clothing was so feminine and pretty, men were suave, cars were the last word in glamour and style, furniture was becoming streamlined and practical yet there was still room for rose strewn carpet ! Having said all that, I am so thankful I live today when not only can I dress and be anything from any era I want, but I also have modern freedoms, equality, choices and advantages.

Tell us about your favourite item of vintage clothing, kitchenalia, music, furniture or whatever !

Being an utterly sentimental girl, my favourite vintage items usually have some story to tell – my 1960's Beatles apron almost identical to the one worn by my Nanna, a roses print that belonged to my Nanna, two authentic vintage dresses given to my husband (but for me!!) by one of his many fans. A cute black velvet hat that belonged to my Grandma, and my collection of vintage magazines and dress patterns for oodles of inspiration ! Oooh yeah – and my 1951 Pontiac Cheifton convertible – my dream car !

Can you share with us why vintage culture continues to hold such appeal for you?

I love the whole culture – the feeling of belonging I get amongst like minded people who value history, creativity, artistry and beautiful aesthetics in life. It really is a wonderful community to be a part of – and the people I have met (and continue to meet) are all so warm and are being genuinely true to themselves, something I find completely inspiring ! After all, culture is nothing without kindred spirits to share it with.

Do you have any tips for anyone starting out in the vintage scene?

Be brave ! Dont be sacred to walk down the street dressed to the nines every day – people are more likely to compliment you than otherwise. Put simply, be true to yourself and what you really is so much more fulfilling to know what you like and stick to it than to be a slave to ever changing, fickle fashion ! 

Make sure you get out there and meet other vintage loving people however you can – at dances, gigs, markets, seminars etc. (I highly recommend one of the Lindy Charm School For Girls sessions as a great and fun way to meet others.)

Dont neglect hair and make up - a vintage look is as much, if not mostly, about your hair and make up's no good wearing a classic dress with Jennifer Anniston hair...I'm afriad it just doesnt work if you are aiming for that complete vintage look. If your aim is to look vintage with a modern twist, then that's ok ! Search out womens hairstyles and make up you admire and learn to emulate their 'do'. Once again, the Lindy Charm Girls can be a wonderful help.

 Lastly, if I ever hear a woman tell me again that she would love to dress like me but doesn't have the figure for it, I will scream ! 50's fashion is soooo flattering to all figure types, big curvy girls look totally awesome in rockabilly/vintage frocks – ever so much more so than tracky dacks and hoodies ! (Just keep away from gathered waists and circle skirts with boofy blouses !!)

Now is your chance to provide us with an overview of who you are and what you do. Tell my readers as much or as little as you like !!!!

I am a stay at home Mum to three extremely busy little people, and wife to a very talented performer and all round great guy! I run this wonderful blogsite (named for my grandmothers) which I am totally addicted to doing, am studying my Masters degree in Community Planning and Development, and do the occasional garden design for my little hobby business, Eden Design. I also love to sing and perform, discover 'new' old music, garden, sew, laugh, dream and see my dreams fulfilled !

Finally, what or who inspires you and why?

I have already mentioned it, but people who are true to themselves, regardless of what others may think.

People who are creative, people who help others achieve their dreams, people with sensitive, caring, generous souls.

For her beauty, Grace Kelly
 for her gorgeous heart, Audrey Hepburn
for her vivacity and spirit, Katherine Hepburn
for his integrity Jimmy Stewart
for his class Gregory Peck
for his talent and achievement, Buddy Holly


  1. Ellie Mae is sitting on my knee looking at the scrren as I read this post and she just come out with "oh wow, just perfect" which just about sums everything up.

  2. Great post - nice to learn more about you. Your choice of people who inspire is fabulous - oh to find myself a Gregory Peck, circa To Kill a Mockingbird ...


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