beauty, lifestyle, style, vintage

Want… Neal’s Yard, Queenie May and Margarita Bloom

Since changing my moisturiser recently my skin’s not been very happy. Maybe this lot can cheer everything up…

I’ve just discovered…

Margarita Bloom:

A very glamorous, sexy and vintage-inspired range of beauty products. Browse collections with names like Bakery, Golden Geisha and There Be Pirates Here Beware.

Queenie May’s Vintage Skincare:

Small New Zealand-based skincare company that started when its founder fell in love with cold cream but couldn’t buy it in her corner of the world. Its creams are made from 1930s recipes and packaged in elegant 1930s-inspired jars.

beauty, fashion, lifestyle, style, vintage

Spring ready…

Spring ready...

$215 –

Illesteva sunglasses
$355 –

Charlotte Lisa fur shawl
$520 –


Chanel lip stick


Neal s Yard neals yard
$32 –

Burt s Bees burt s bee
$9.06 –

Chanel beauty product
$42 –

art, crafts, DIY, fashion, interiors, lifestyle, recycling, style, vintage

Interview: My Make Do and Mend Year

In September fellow blogger Jen embarked on a year-long mission to avoid buying anything brand new by making do and mending in the Blitz spirit. Already she estimates she has saved £1,000.

JennyVintage finds out how she’s bearing up, how her craft skills are coming and how it’s changed her style.

What inspired you to embark on a year of make do and mend?

I got fed up with all the ‘stuff’ and a little bit scared that by the age of three, my eldest (BigSmall) was already so focused on getting more ‘stuff’. I also wondered if it could be done, and then read about Suzy Prince and her Secondhand Safari, and it gave me the shove I needed to give it a go!

Did you already have a lot of craft and sewing skills to prepare you for what you may have let yourself in for?

Having never been at all arty or crafty I learned to sew when I was on maternity leave after having BigSmall, and then got into all things ‘upcycling’ and discovered vintage along the way!

What are the best craft skills you have learnt since starting your year?

I would probably say crocheting. I learnt just before Christmas, and I am now well and truly hooked (excuse the pun!)

Any craft disasters or tears?

My first attempt at a crocheted hat was a bit of a disaster – not at all glamorous or flattering, and it is now being used as a crocheted ‘bucket’!

Crochet hat1

Has make do and mend had a big impact on your style? How would you sum up your current style?

I have never been big follower of fashion and the latest styles, but I hope I am not so bad that I embarrass the kids! Buying second-hand has definitely influenced my style though. I have gone from no dresses, to four (yes, four!), all from charity shops. And I have picked up several lovely snuggly wooly jumpers at vintage fairs. I think I am now braver in what I will try, as things are invariably a bit cheaper than buying new. And I have more confidence to just go with what I like, rather than what I think I should like because the shop is telling me to.

new dress41

What have been your best second-hand and vintage finds during your project?

I bought a faux fur coat from the car boot for £15 that I love! And I have a weakness for vintage haberdashery and got a job lot of wooden vintage cotton spools at a flea market, that again I love. No idea if I will even use them for their original purpose, but I enjoy just looking at them, and planning projects for them!

What are the best markets, shops and websites you’ve found to shop for second-hand and vintage since starting the project? 

Car boots are good for general everyday stuff, and you can sometimes find a genuine vintage bargain. I love the flea market at the Bath and West Showground, although it is becoming less of a flea market and more of a vintage fair now, and the prices are rising accordingly…

How much money do you estimate you have saved by not buying brand new? Did you start with a target for savings?

We didn’t set out to save money, it was more of a ‘sustainable living’ project, but we have undoubtedly saved some cash along the way. Over Christmas, our maximum spend for all the presents was less than £50, compared with the more like £300 we would usually have spent. We have possibly saved up to £1,000 in the first six months, but I couldn’t be sure.


What are your make do and mend plans like for the second half of your year? Is there anything you’re determined to achieve before it’s over?

I want to spread the word!  I feel quite passionately that a little bit of Make Do and Mend is what we should all be aiming for, and would encourage everyone to just stop and think for a minute or two before rushing out and buying yet more stuff, about whether or not they really need it, and if they do, can they find it second-hand?

I want mending to be as cool as baking is at the moment – it could be the next big thing.

I want to run some Make Do and Mend craft days, and some mending evenings, and maybe some school workshops – big plans, and really start to get the message out there.

Would you do another year?

Definitely (although hubby may say otherwise). It has without a doubt changed the way we will shop in the future. Just by giving a bit more thought to what we are buying is not only saving us money, but has meant that we have often ended up with one-off unique to us items (clothes and furniture, for instance) that are far more interesting than yet another identikit outfit or piece of furniture.

In Bath1


drinks, fashion, food, history, lifestyle, style, travel, vintage

Woburn: the birthplace of afternoon tea

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When my friend Ayesha came up from London for the weekend and said she’d never tried afternoon tea, I took her to Woburn in Bedfordshire, which claims to be its birthplace. According to Woburn Abbey, the seventh Duchess of Bedford – Anna Maria – invented afternoon tea in the 1840s because she felt the hours between luncheon and dinner were far too long. She needed sandwiches and cakes at five o’clock to tide her over.

The Duchess Anna Maria afternoon tea is £16.25 a person and you can add a glass of champagne for £7.25.

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I’m wearing:

Coat – charity shop

Lace gloves – vintage

Bag – Beyond Retro

Brogues – Pied A Terre

Umbrella – Lulu Guinness

drinks, food, lifestyle, recipes, vintage

New York cooler cocktail


From 100 Cocktails: How To Mix Them by Bernard

1/2 gill of Canadian club whiskey

1/4 gill of lemon squash

1 dash of lemon peel juice

3 dashes of grenadine syrup

1 slice of lemon

1 lump of ice

Fill up with soda water

Put the lump of ice in a tall glass and add the Canadian club whiskey. Then add the lemon squash and the grenadine syrup. Fill up with soda water and stir well. Serve with a dash of lemon peel juice and a slice of lemon.

drinks, fashion, food, lifestyle, recipes, style

Photo shoot nibbles…


Lunchtime on the day of the photo shoot for my friend Erin’s plus-size clothing range at Asos – misslacyltd – was pretty special, with chocolate covered strawberries and red velvet mini cupcakes for dessert. Erin’s also taken to something new and very pretty – frozen blueberries in cocktails, which turn drinks purple in no time…

And the chargrilled chicken on little pieces of bagel with basil was my favourite bit –



fashion, lifestyle, style, vintage

Photo shoot: Miss Lacy plus-size



    Today my very good friend Erin launched her new collection of plus-size clothing on Asos Marketplace so I thought I’d share some of the snaps I took during the photo shoot for the new bits last week. The gorgeous model is our lovely friend Ruby Retro.



The 1940s-style purple tea dress is one of my favourites in the collection and this maxi dress reminds me of a kimono –









  The designer: Erin, AKA Miss Lacy –
















 Me trying not to get in the way…