crafts, fashion, history, Lifestyle, style, travel, vintage

How to run a vintage stall? Bletchley Park 1940s festival 2013

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For the second year in a row I ran a vintage stall with my friends at the annual Bletchley Park 1940s weekend – the biggest BP event of the year, complete with re-enactors, umpteen military vehicles and our very own Winston Churchill. This event usually gets more than 2,000 visitors over the weekend so it’s a great place to clear out some of the stuff I no longer wear.

This year my good friends Auriol and Erin joined me in selling vintage clothes, accessories and home-made pinnies! I also sold some stuff for my friend Billie at Ollie Vee’s Vintage Emporium in Leighton Buzzard. Billie had some brilliant boater hats and 78s!

We took more than £300 between us and the biggest sellers were hats, aprons and jewellery. Cin cin, team!

For a good Bletchley Park vintage stall you need – 

A lot of straw hats, particularly boaters

Records – 78s

Compact mirrors and brooches

Ladies’ scarves

Pimm’s (but fake Pimm’s is even better – Austin’s from Aldi at about £5.50 a bottle!)

Enough cloudy lemonade to avoid sad faces

Strawberries, cucumber and mint

Beers just in case you run out of all of that

And if you would like to buy a gorgeous home-made pinnie for £5, just send me an email at

Day one –

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Sign drawn by the very talented Erin from Miss Lacy Plus Size

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 Erin and Henry manning the stall

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Get yer bargain home-made aprons – just £5!


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Sarah’s Doo-Wop Dos was back this year making all of the ladies look glam. Prices range from £5.

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We had a great little pitch right next to the pond. And there’s Henry’s finger…

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“Photo bomb!”

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I’m wearing:

Blue vintage dress – 1940s, Ollie Vee’s, Leighton Buzzard

Yellow apron – Erin’s home-made pinnies

Shoes – George at Asda

Leather bag – Ollie Vee’s

Cameo ring – Ollie Vee’s

Faux fur coat – charity shop

Belt – Primark

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Auriol and Cameron joined us in the afternoon for Pimm’s and cake

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Day two – 

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 Never get into a stranger’s car… unless it looks like this…

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I’m wearing:

Dress – charity shop –

Apron – by Erin

Shoes – George at Asda

Parasol – present

Fashion, lifestyle, style, vintage

Just bought: cat eye sunglasses



While browsing round sunglasses that reminded me of gorgeous 1940s pairs yesterday evening, I came across these fantastic ones on Asos. They’re £8 down from £12. I love the dark green and tortoiseshell.

fashion, Lifestyle, Style, vintage

1940s inspiration: round sunglasses

I got so inspired by the stunning women who dressed up for the annual 1940s weekend at Bletchley Park over the past two days. Every year I get very jealous of their incredibly glamorous outfits and this weekend I mostly wanted their sunglasses – round, 1940s-style! My favourites were pale pinks and metal frames – or the vintage sci-fi robot look as I like to call it. So cool!

Here are my favourite budget-friendly round sunglasses…


Topshop – £16


Topshop – £16


Asos – £8

fashion, Lifestyle, Shoes, style

Just bought… Red or Dead Lindy Hop heels!



I just bought these fab Red Or Dead Lindy Hop heels for my sister’s wedding where I’ll be a bridesmaid next week! They’re £68 from Schuh and Amazon.

I’m wearing them with a dark purple tea dress from Monsoon.



They come in these cool colours too…



Fashion, Lifestyle, Photography, Style, Vintage

Gatsby dress up in the woods?

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The other day my friend Auriol and I went for a stroll around the woods to take some test shots for a photography project she’s planning. The final shots will have a lot of props, flowers and big skirts but on Thursday we popped out to try out colours and locations.

I’m wearing a 1920s-style dress I bought from a charity shop on holiday a few years ago and the pink netted hat I sewed skulls onto for Hallowe’en.

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We clipped my dress together at the front just to play around with getting more green in the shot. But in real life it scoops right down to the waistline.

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Photos by Auriol Butcher. Camera: Nikon D3100

I’m wearing:

1920s-style dress – charity shop

Black slip – Beyond Retro

Pink netted hat – Ollie Vee’s Vintage Emporium, Leighton Buzzard

Brogues – Russell & Bromley, via a charity shop

Faux fur coat – charity shop

Ring – present

design, drinks, Fashion, interiors, Lifestyle, style, vintage

Tea time at Ollie Vee’s – my favourite vintage haven


Ollie Vee’s in Leighton Buzzard, my favourite vintage shop in the world, recently opened a coffee bar downstairs. Jonny Valentine – another piece of the shop furniture – and I were at first worried we’d have to start paying for tea. And we do – it’s £1.20 a cup. But to be fair we’d had a lot of free tea and biscuits over the years.

Owner Billie wanted to recreate the feel of a 1960s London coffee bar and the bright yellow and black fittings definitely take us back nearly 50 years. My favourite detail is the great drinks menu hanging behind Jourdon. It’s actually 2D.



I used to drink tea on the comfy stool in the changing room. Now we have some really cool vintage tables and chairs. Oh, and on the floor are old film posters varnished on the concrete.



 Meanwhile, elsewhere in the shop today… stuff like Fork Candles…












design, fashion, Lifestyle, Style

Want… Dahlia cat hats

Straw-Cat-Hat-1_grandeI love hats. At one point I think I had about 20 and it was the hat binge of 2010 that contributed significantly to my financial problems that year. That and the dresses, coats and pub lunches…

I just spotted these great hats with cat ears at Dahlia and love them already. They’re £32 and come in three colours. My favourite’s the straw.