Saturday, 29 December 2012

Happy Holidays! Christmas at the Fancy Dresscapade House

Hello everyone! I hope that you all had a good holiday season.

For me its been a bit of a quiet one, my first married Christmas (that I unfortunately had to spend away from my husband), my first Christmas with only two grandparents and my first proper working Christmas. I was lucky to get Christmas day itself off and decided to dress for the occasion.

I wore a red dress from Laura Ashley, I've had this a few years now and I'm glad that the diet finally needs I need a belt to pull it in around the waist :)

My hair was somewhat dirty, from three long shifts the days before, but dirty hair allows for some interesting hair sculpting. I tried my hand at doing three large hair rolls right on the top of my head - somewhat inspired by Angel Adoree of the Vintage Patisserie, but I'm not sure I got the placement of that middle roll quite right.

Ah well, more practice practice!

One of my gifts this year was a lovely faux fur hat and collar set, I was really pleased with this as it will add a snuggly vintage touch to all my coats! (Sadly my hair was too big to try the hat on...).

One of my favourite parts, along with I imagine everyone else, of Christmas day is the meal. My family are quite relaxed about such things as we all like to cook so our tactic is to assign a few tasks to each member and share the load. It generally works quite well, although there are the very occasional moments where too many cooks spoil the broth rings true.

One of my main jobs was to make the Yorkshire puddings. I use a family secret recipe from my Grandad and it works every time (and yes, my apron has cupcakes on it...).

One last thing i that I am very grateful to Mr Fancy for getting me a 3DSXL for Christmas (especially since it has Pikachu on it!) But one of the fun things about a 3DS is that you get to style a game avatar to look like you. Here is mine, and the one I made for Mr Fancy:

Its not really the most accurate representation of my I could have made, but you get the idea...

How way your Christmas?

Saturday, 22 December 2012

Cosplay Inspirations: V&A Hollywood Camera App

I think by now it can be considered that the V&A Hollywood Costume exhibition is a big hit.

Now, I can't speak from personal experience as I have still yet to go (I'm hoping to sneak a visit after I've submitted my thesis) but everyone I know that's has been says it is an excellent exhibition.

Anywho, my mum went around a month ago and she came back with an app for me.

The V&A Hollywood Camera is a little bit of fluff that allows you to 'wear' various costumes from the exhibit. The style of the app is a camera screen that you can shoot or upload photographs to and then superimpose the costumes over the top of the photo (the interface isn't unlike Instagram to be honest). The costumes are fully re-sizable and can be rotated, which is great, however they can't be turned on their axis meaning that all photographs used must be taken straight on.

This is okay if you are posing for pictures directly, but if you thought you'd like to Hollywood-ise all your Facebook pictures this probably isn't the app for you.

I had lots of fun Hollywood-ising photos for my blog but the results varied enormously and in the end the best shots came from a photo that was simply posed against a plain background. Unfortunately this sort of detracts from the fun a little.

Having said that I have wanted to know how I would look in Keira Knightly's Anna Karenina outfit for some time - and now I know!

The selection of costumes is split between male and female so you can equally Hollywood-ise brothers, sisters, husbands or mothers - you know they'd love to dress as Heath Ledger from Brokeback Mountain!

I tried putting a Blues Brothers outfit over Mr Fancy but I'm not sure he was too pleased with the results...

Tree are 17 costumes to choose from and each costume has a little bit of info to tell you about the costumes origin and who wore it too.

Maria 'Angel' Barker - Angel & Karen - Out of Africa
Queen Elizabeth I - Elizabeth: the Golden Age & Pu Yi - The Last Emperor
Judy Barton - Vertigo & Viola - Shakespeare in Love

To be honest there is a lot of scope for this app to be regularly updated with new costumes from the exhibit but I don't get the impression that will happen. At 69p it's not bad value and its something you can play with with almost every new person you meet and as far as souvenirs go, 69p is exceptionally cheap.

There are a few things that could make this app a bit more versatile but for the price it's okay, a bit of photoshopping will help an awful lot too! It makes for nice easy costume pictures which always makes me happy!

Did you make it to the V&A Hollywood Costume Exhibition? If so what did you think?

Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Cosplay Review: A Versatile Venetian Veneer - or a Beautiful Metal Mask (I love alliteration!)

Yesterday I arrived home to a lovely surprise! Caroline from Silly Jokes sent me a present in the form of a gorgeous Venetian mask.

No when I think of a Venetian mask I think of opulent parties and sumptuous satin dresses (although those masks with the big noses weird me out a little) but they are not really limited to historical costume these days.

I was advised that this particular style was similar to a mask seen in The Vampire Diaries and after a bit of research I saw that this alternative style of Venetian mask was classy, stylish and very wearable.

The mask I was sent is made of a fine coated metal with beautiful filigree design (you can view it here). I am informed that they are made and imported from the Veneto region in Italy - these are the real deal!

I found wearing the mask a little odd at first but very quickly became used to it, the metal work is smooth and does not scratch and the ribbon ties make it comfortable over your ears. I wore this for around an hour to get a feeling of how it might feel on a night out (the things I do for my readers!) and surprisingly it was more comfortable than the card mask I wore during my time as Harley Quinn.

The only downside to this mask is that the price may seem a little expensive, but the quality is really outstanding. It is the kind of thing that you could bring out again and again at a new year party which is something very valuable in costuming.

Now if only I had a party to go to...

Have you ever been to a masquerade ball?

Friday, 14 December 2012

Vintage Outfit: Red Tartan and a New Hat

At the moment I have a little bit of an obsession with tartan. When I get a few spare moments I'm hoping to make a plaid dress, but before that I have satisfied my plaid lust with a couple of skirts. The first is is one I mentioned here.

The second one is this lovely bright red one. It is a Viyella wool pleated midi skirt, c.1990, that I bought online. It is a little but long but it keeps me nice and warm.

The coat I am wearing on this picture is one I have worn a lot this winter and features in a few previous posts.

This hat is a small American Style hat made of straw in a sort of coral and red colour. It's a very cute little day hat which is probably not best suited to sit upon my nest of hair but oh well! I think it should have sat a little further forward but I need to experiment with it.

Recently I've been playing with the VA Hollywood costume app so I'll have a post on that soon!

Monday, 10 December 2012

Vintage Events: 'Introducing Barberpop' - The Scarlet Street EP Launch

Last Friday I was a lucky blogger and was invited to the Scarlet Street EP launch for Introducing Barberpop. I wrote a brief heads up about this group a few posts ago so I won't go into too much detail on that here.

The launch was held at Jimmyz Bar on the trendy Newcastle quayside and the whole bar was booked for the private party.

Upon arrival (right on time for a change) it was quiet enough for my husband and I to get a drink and I could take a few snapshots of the decorations around the bar.

There were posters showing the EP album work scattered around but Scarlet Street had even had their own coasters printed for the event! This was definitely a favourite touch of Mr Fancy who collects such trinkets.

The group also has a special cocktail menu devised for the event - a class act all the way! I very much appreciated that one of the drinks was called 'The Jen' (on a side note I should have known I would appreciate this band when upon first speaking to the famous Jen she said 'Oh! Hi Jennie - great name by the way!') Sadly 'The Jen' cocktail was not really my thing as I'm not a fan of Tia Maria. 'The Zita' however was something I could happily sip on (that sounds ruder than its meant to).

The first act of the night was a rockabilly band named the Honey Bop Trio who sang around 10 songs and were thoroughly entertaining while I took pictures of the band. Who were impeccably dressed by the way!

The ever humble Scarlet Street served guests with delicious canap├ęs wearing a collection of retro pinnies.

After the band there was a burlesque act by the Sisters of Tease. They did several strips and it was really fun to hear the gasps and giggles from the audience.

Then on to the main event. Scarlet Street performed several of their YouTube classics while bathed in a red light and wearing red. I've always been a fan of ladies wearing red and I have to say these gals looked fantastic.

After a few acapella tracks they moved on to perform the original songs from the EP - and they are certainly very good!

Annoyingly my last train home was at half past 10 so I didn't get so see the whole set but I saw about 6 songs and they were all fantastic.

I would highly recommend Scarlet Street to everyone who is a fan of that close harmony big band barbershop style.

You can buy their EP online at CD Baby now and it will be available on iTunes soon!

Oh and one last picture - just in case you were wondering what I wore for the evening:

Sorry I look a little dishevelled - I got thoroughly rained on while walking to the bar and my hair does not survive well in the damp.

That's all from me for now.

Thursday, 6 December 2012

Vintage Outfit: A Gorgeous 1960s Swing Coat

Hey there everyone,

This post features another gem i acquired courtesy of my grandmother. She was clearly a very stylish lady back in the day, it makes me sad that so little of her wardrobe remains now but if there was I would probably be suffering with guilt from wanting to steal it all...

Anywho, I was raiding the wardrobe, as usual, and came across this beautiful coat! It was bought and worn for my Dad's christening in 1962 and now I can wear it 50 years later. Personally I think that's amazing!

The fit was slightly too big so I altered the buttons to reduce the size slightly but as the style of the coat is an A-line swing coat so it is meant to be quite baggy around the waist and hips. Its not the fit that I am used to but its very pretty and a lovely colour.

It is a really gorgeous coat with an amazing feature collar that can be worn in two ways either flat or turned over as a cowel neck.

I teamed the coat with some red leather gloves and a black satchel for my walk into town.

If you're interested in what I wore under the coat it was a black midi skirt with a red paisley design with a red blouse and a mock aran cardigan. Sorry my hair is so dishevelled at this point - it was rather windy on the way back from town.

Coat - Vintage 1960s
Skirt - Jane Norman via eBay
Blouse - Next via thrift shop
Cardigan - Primark
Boots - Clarks Sale

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Scarlet Street

Hello everyone!

I don't usually talk about music on Fancy Dresscapades but I discovered something recently that was too good not to share.

I live in the North East of England. So imagine my surprise when I found a Newcastle-based vocal group that sings close harmonies and acapella, barber-shop style versions of pop songs (and some old classics)? As if thats not enough they are super-stylish ladies that dress in a retro rockabilly style?

Yeah, I know!

The ladies in question are Scarlet Street, like the 1945 movie of the same name, and they are a fab female foursome that are driving the sound of barber pop.

Here is a video to show you what it's all about:

They are currently spreading the word, or sound, of barberpop and are soon launching an EP featuring 5 songs, two original, two covers and a remix. They promise big band arrangements fused with barberpop vocals.

There EP, calle Barberpop, is released on the 7th of December and will be sold by online retailers. I am hoping to tag along to the launch party that evening and I will post on that then - oh and of course what me and the ladies are wearing!

But for now check out their YouTube channel - its awesome!!
Oh and you can follow Twitter here.

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