Wednesday, July 2, 2014

༺ Currently: Tick Tock ༻

‘Currently’ posts are a little snapshot of the events that are occurring in my day-to-day life. These episodes feature photos from my Instagram, do come and say “Hi!” if you are around. Also, if you would like to participate in this feature yourself, please feel free! I’d love to read your posts, so don’t forget to leave a link.  ♡

Bun-Tea4Two

READING:

My pony books. Of which, take up one and a half shelves on my bookcase, and so there are lots to read and enjoy! I adore the old school pony books and collect them avidly, and read them over and over again. It’s fun.

My favorite authors; Monica Edwards, Pullein-Thompson sisters, and Ruby Ferguson. ⁎*✧*⁎

Locket

WONDERING:

When we’ll get to the snow! We’ve had the dump of a decade last weekend and my powder sense is tingling. I waannnnaaaaaa go boarding!

Rainbow-Puff 

FEELING THANKFUL:

That sometimes the sun comes out and we have blue skies. Love that winter sun.

Doughnut

EATING:

Salads ~ chicken, garden, Caesar. I’m chomping through the green stuff like it’s going out of style. Oh, and potatoes. Bowls of potatoes sprinkled with salt and pepper. Yum!

Red

WATCHING:

The Dragon Riders of Berk; and ah! Best movie ever ~ How To Train Your Dragon 2. Yup, been overdosing{if it’s possible??} on Toothless and Hiccup. Love it!

Case-Bow

WORKING ON:

Um….. (¬_¬)  Nothing. Don’t have any energy. I am reserving it all for packing and moving.

Gold

LOVING:

Blue skies ~ when they actually appear! Oreo cookies with chocolate centers. Because all the chocolate! Midnight Fantasy perfume. Little Happy Stitches felt brooches. Online shopping. Fuzzy bunny slippers. Finally riding my horse again. Yay! Blogilates’ POP Pilates videos; these are seriously addictive and fun. A phone case for every outfit and hair bows to match. Well, not quite{!}, but I do like having a little collection to change up now and then. Playing indoor soccer again.

Cherry-Drop

ATTEMPTING:

To just keep swimmin’, just keep swimmin’ ~ swimmin’ swimmin’ swimmin’…
‘ ‘٩(⁎^ᴗ^⁎)۶’’

Cake

WANTING:

To craft again. I have an itch to work with polymer clay and resin again. I need to get creative. 

Notebook

DOING:

Nothing. Nadda. Nope. Nothing at all. Except riding the pon-pon. So it’s all good. Actually, we are waiting to exchange on the house, so we are just hanging around for that really.

Peach

(‘Currently’ post inspired by Danielle of Sometimes Sweet’s feature and Kaelah of Little Chief Honeybee!)

xox,

bonita

༺ ♡ ༻

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Monday, June 23, 2014

༺ Pin Curls 101: The Curl Brush Out & Styling ༻

And we are back with our Pin Curls 101 series! First we looked at the Basics of Pin Curls and how to do them.  Today we are reviewing the final stages of a wet set; the all-important brush out, and the art of styling your pin curls.

A major component for a successful wet set is the brush out. Half of the success of your finished style lies in what type of brush you use, the other half in the technique you use while brushing. In this particular post, I’ll be addressing the technique, rather than the brushes themselves as we will cover those in The Tools of a Vintage Look. So let’s get started!

Careful brushing for a perfect pin curl style - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill 

How to brush out Pin Curls:

The Wrong Way


Wrong way to brush out - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill 

You can see the bristles of the brush are rolling out away from the head, while the brush is stroking from front to back. This pulls the hair away from the head, resulting in loose, uncontrolled, frizzy curls. The end curl is also often not brushed through thoroughly, resulting in more frizz and mess. It is harder to create a clean style with this brush out technique.

The Right Way

Right-Way 

Here the bristles are turned into the head as the brush strokes from front to back. You can see the brush is flat against the head, rolling slightly with the back of the brush leaning away from the face. This ensures the bristle brush all the way to the ends, resulting in smoother curls as they are more controlled and sculpted. Less time is needed to finish the brush out and a better style is achieved.

 

Trio of vintage beauties perfecting their hair - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill 

Essential Tips for the Best Brush Out:

  • Dry Hair 
    Make sure hair is completely dry. DO NOT brush out wet or damp hair, as doing so will not only destroy your pin curls by pulling them out of shape, but it can also cause potential damage to the hair shaft itself. If you are short on time, use a hair dryer to speed the drying process up, or rearrange the curls into an updo. You can also cover them up with a turban-styled scarf, or a pretty cap.

  • Use a brush
    Do not use a comb unless it’s for styling a flick after the brush out, or to arrange or deepen waves. Cheap plastic combs tend to create static and frizz ~ and frizz is the enemy! If you must use a comb, try to find one with wide gaps between the teeth.

  • Keep brushing!
    When you first take your pin curls down, your hair will look super curly and crazy, and after you finger comb through the curls it might look even worse. Start your brush and do not freak out when you look like you have an afro! The more you brush, the more your curls will fall into nice sleek waves. Brushing disturbs the set temporarily, but will not affect the strength of the curl if the setting was done correctly.

  • Use backcombing
    Backcombing blends the hair together nicely, helps shape the hairdo into smooth lines, and adds height, ‘pouf’, and volume, particularly at the crown {the top of the head}. To backcomb the hair, you hold the hair up and out from the scalp, combing underneath towards the scalp with a ruffling motion. Putting the hair back in place, you carefully smooth the top layer over without ruining the backcombing.

  • Handle hair gently
    Light bushing motions and no tugging! Try to ease the brush through the curls to maintain smoothness and shape. Use your hand to control the frizz by brushing the curls out against the palm of your hand, and gently arranging the curls with your fingers.

  • Use a flexible, brushable, strong hold hairspray
    This way you can touch up repeatedly without damaging your hair or your pin curl set. Cheap hair spray can cause the curls to be too stiff, and can dry your hair out. Plus, your curls will loose their bounce and swinging movement, which is not nice for a vintage style.

 

1940's rolled up-do with middle part - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill

 

Styling Your Pin Curls:

The easiest way to style your pin curls is to simply brush out the curls, creating a deep side part on whichever side of your face you prefer, arranging the curls so that they fall in a pleasing manner ~ à la the ever glamorous Lauren Bacall. You can apply a light application of pomade or a flexible, strong hair spray to ensure your style will hold.

Lauren Bacall's simple 1940's hair style - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill

Note how her side part lines up with the arch of her brow. If you follow the same parting pattern this little trick will help you to achieve that authentic 1940’s look.

Another simple, yet perfectly elegant style is to pin back the hair from the front of your crown, as little or as much as you need, as shown below. Again, apply just enough product to ensure a sleek hairdo for the whole day, but not too much or you will weigh your curls down and they will loose their bounce.

Elegant, yet simple 1940's style - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill

You can also pin or use combs to pull back the sides of your hair;

1940's side pinned style

or sweep across your front crown hair and pin, as seen below.

Bette Davis' easy 1940's hairstyle - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill

As you can see in the examples above, this is where it becomes quite crucial to end up with a successful pin curl set, particularly if you are after a sleek curl.  By themselves, pin curls are such a pretty, elegant hairdo that you can easily have a simple, yet effective arrangement.  

There are, of course, myriads of more complex styles you can achieve with a pin curl base ~

Victory Rolls:
1940's Victory Roll hairdo - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill

The popular half up & half down style to make the most of your curls:

1940's curled half up & half down style - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill 
A feminine pompadour with a low pony tail:

1940's Pompadour hair style - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill

A soft chignon complemented with a gently curling fringe:

1940's Chignon hair style - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill

A Betty Grable updo:

1940's Betty Grable bangs - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill

or for that matter, a Lucille Ball look straight from I Love Lucy’s iconic style!

1940's Lucille Ball's hair style - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill

Just be aware that these more complex hairstyles will often require particular setting patterns in order to achieve the final look, and while some setting patterns can be found online, others are not so easy to get a hold of. I shall round up as many setting patterns as I can further along in the series, but I can really recommend getting hold of some hair styling books specific to vintage styling if you really crave a variety of pin curl hairdos.

But that’s us for now! Coming up next in our series, we’ll be taking a look at all the different kinds of tools you can use for creating the perfect pin curl ‘do.  It can range from a simple rats tail comb, to specific implements invented just to help you curl your hair. I’m looking forwards to it ~ are you?

xox,

bonita

༺ ♡ ༻

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Wednesday, June 18, 2014

༺ Winter’s Quest ༻


Along the banks of the river, leaves drift and fall | Lavender & Twill 
Winter dreaming | Lavender & Twill

Cherry red for a cheerful winter's day | Lavender & Twill

Jewel tones create a striking color pallette | Lavender & Twill

Bow laces are a lovely bit of pouff | Lavender & Twill


In the middle of the day, when the sun is shining so brightly, it’s sort of hard to believe that winter is here already. And then it gets dark around 5:00pm and it’s freezing and grey the next day, so yes…

Winter has most certainly arrived.  And so it ‘tis the time for our annual winter quest! The shorter days can rather chaff with busy family schedules, but it is well worth it when the snow season kicks off full blast. (づ。◕‿‿◕。)づ ❄*:・゚

In case you haven’t already guessed, our family is quite keen on our snow sports ~ the Mister and I are both obsessive snowboarders. It’s actually quite romantic.

You see, when we first met up, we didn’t know each other all that well. We used to be friends, but had lost touch with each other for many years. We accidentally met up again through a mutual friend and hung out a bit, but that was it. Then as winter approached, I had mentioned that I really wanted to learn snowboarding. {At this stage I hadn’t realized that the Mister was such a keen boarder, but I soon found that out!}

Anyways, a long story short, he offered to teach me how to ride, and I accepted. We went down to Jindabyne for a three day weekend on the slopes. By dint of extremely stubborn determination to not let the Mister see me fail {despite an overly tender posterior from spending most of my time on my derriere} I managed to catch on to the basics whilst getting well and truly bitten with the powder bug.

That was the beginnings of a very sweet relationship and three months later he was asking me to marry him! And we all know how that turned out...  (~ ヮ •)   Now the Mister and I generally go every year, as we both thoroughly enjoy the snow that brought us together.
。⁎ ゚・:*❄*:・゚⁎ 。♡~ (。◕‿◕。)

So I eagerly await the advent of this year’s snow season, and hold my breath until we get that first big dump so we can hit the slopes. It’s going to be epic! Do you enjoy snow sports? Or do you prefer to admire the white stuff from a distance?

xox,

bonita

༺ ♡ ༻

Red Ribbon Hair Bow | Dollar Shop, Old
Red-y To Go Cardigan | Thrifted
Plaid Picnic Vintage 50’s Dress | eBay
Sweet Fox Brooch | Little Happy Stitches, Etsy
Ruby Belt | Thrifted
Navy Stockings | Kmart
No Place Like Home Heels | Rivers, Old

༺ ♡ ༻

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Tuesday, June 17, 2014

༺ How To Make Ric-Rac Rose Jewelry ༻

Ric-rac is such a fun, quirky trim that comes in such a variety of colors and sizes, it’s no wonder that it’s still a popular material for many crafters and sewing enthusiasts.

Ric-rac, ribbon and twine | Lavender & Twill

You’ve also probably noticed that ric rac features heavily as a favorite trimming in the 1950s ~ a lot of dresses and skirts had ric rac detailing on them, like these lovely dresses:

Ric-rac 1950's sun dress | Lavender & Twill 
Turquiose & ric-rac make a charming combination ~ found on Rubylane.com | Lavender & Twill 
So if you’re are looking for a simple way to add a touch of that vintage~flavored kitsch to your outfit, then this Ric-Rac Rose Jewelry Tutorial is just the thing for you!

Materials you will need:

  • Thin ric rac if you want to make earrings, thick ric rac to make a broach/ring
  • Jewelry findings ~ such as post earring backs, and a brooch pin or ring base
  • Thread to sew the roses together/to your jewelry findings
  • Hot glue

How to make a ric-rac rose:

Ric-rac Rose Tutorial by Janet of Vintage Vogue’s Nostalgic NeedleART | Lavender & Twill

Step 1:  Cut a length of ric-rac, fold it in half and twist the two pieces around each other.

Step 2:  Roll the rose up and secure it with glue or thread so it doesn’t come unraveled. You can use pins to get the placement of the end right, or just hold it tight. 

Step 3:  Peel the petals back if you like, or use it as a rose bud. 

Now to make your ric-rac roses into jewelry! ✿

To make ric-rac rose bud earrings:

Rolling a ric-rac rose bud - How To Make Ric-Rac Rose Jewelry  | Lavender & Twill

Step 1:  Cut two 15cm pieces of 1/2cm wide ric rac and roll them into a rose bud.

The cup and post findings - How To Make Ric-Rac Rose Jewelry | Lavender & Twill

Step 2:  Glue your bud to the earring finding.

Note:  I used bead cups with the post earring threaded through the hole in the middle because the disc at the end of the post was too small to glue the bud onto.  You can just use a plain post earrings if that is your preference.

Ric-rac rose bud earrings - How To Make Ric-Rac Rose Jewelry | Lavender & Twill

Step 3:  Repeat ~ and voilà!  You have two cute ric rac rose earrings to wear. 

To make a ric-rac rose brooch:

A large ric-rac rose bud - How To Make Ric-Rac Rose Jewelry | Lavender & Twill

Step 1:  Cut a 82cm piece of 1cm wide ric rac and roll into a rose.  Glue the end down.

Unfurling the petals to a full rose - How To Make Ric-Rac Rose Jewelry | Lavender & Twill

Step 2:  Peel the outer layers of the ric rac back to ‘unfurl’ the bud.  You may have to glue the bottom of the rose to keep it from falling apart. 

Pieces of felt to add to the rose brooch - How To Make Ric-Rac Rose Jewelry | Lavender & Twill

Step 3:  Cut out some green felt in the shape of leaves and a small circle that is the width of your broach pin.

Finishing the back of the brooch off - How To Make Ric-Rac Rose Jewelry | Lavender & Twill

Step 4:  Glue down the leaves, then the broach pin, then the felt circle.  You want the circle to sit in the middle of the back of the rose and cover all the untidy glue. 

A pretty two piece, vintage-styled jewelry set - How To Make Ric-Rac Rose Jewelry | Lavender & Twill

Now you are ready to début your lovely set of ric rac rose jewelry. (✿◠‿◠) You could also make a ring, or glue a rose to a clip and wear it in you hair ~ really the possibilities are limitless.  Ric-rac can add the perfect sweet touch to just about anything; so have fun with it!   

xox,

bonita

༺ ♡ ༻

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Wednesday, June 11, 2014

༺ Happy Stitches ༻

 Adventures outside in the cold require warmth in the form of wool skirts and knit cardigans | Lavender & Twill

Adding a touch of kitch, sweetness, or whatever your taste to vintage outfits keeps them from looking dowdy | Lavender & Twill

Adding some brooches creates interesting detail for a simpler outfit | Lavender & Twill Little Happy Stitches brooches are the perfect cute fuzz felt touch | Lavender & Twill  

I was so thrilled to receive my order from Little Happy Stitches in the mail the other day. I had ordered a darling felt fox brooch {similar here} and was dithering over ordering the polar bear as well. In the end, I had to put the bear away in my favorites as I didn’t really have the funds for both items. I was impatiently waiting, when… My parcel arrived from Ireland! Yay!

Just imagine my surprise when I opened up my beautifully wrapped package to find not one, but two perfectly sweet handmade felt brooches!

Wendy, who is the lovely owner of Little Happy Stitches, not only made up the fox on my request {she had sold out before I could snaffle one} but she had also included an extra brooch; and it was a polar bear! *squee!* So happy! Did a happy dance!!
✧゚・:*ヽ(*⌒∇⌒*)ノ*:・゚✧

Little Happy Stitches Felt Brooches | Lavender & Twill

The quality of these pieces is superb. Such tiny, perfectly even stitches! The felt colors are lovely, just like the pictures, and the size is just right. Not too big, not too small! I really couldn’t be more satisfied with my new brooches, I will certainly treasure them for a long time. ☆

There are other wonderful felt goodies for sale at Little Happy Stitches, including cute key rings and precious plushies that are sure to delight, so do check out Wendy’s shop if you feel in need of some felt-y goodness to brighten your day.

Little Happy Stitches Kitten Plushie | Lavender & Twill 
Who wouldn’t smile at a cute kitten like this?


xox,

bonita

༺ ♡ ༻

Sailor Cream Cardigan |  eBay
Green Dream Top | ICE, Old
Fox and Polar Bear Brooch | Little Happy Stitches, Etsy
Wine Wool Midi Skirt | Oasap
Button Victorian Boots | Old

༺ ♡ ༻

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Discloser |  I am not affiliated with Little Happy Stitches, or Etsy in any way; I bought this product myself and chose to do a review because I like it. (✿◠‿◠)

Sunday, June 8, 2014

༺ Pin Curls 101: The Basics of Pin Curls ༻

Pin curls. The essential hair styling technique for a vintage lady’s repertoire. There’s no denying that an authentic 1940s or 1950s look requires curls, and the best way to achieve that is to set your hair the way that they used to back in the day.

On the surface, pin curling doesn’t seem like it’s all that complicated; roll your wet hair up, let it dry, brush it and style! But as I have found out to my chagrin after many failed, or not-quite-right pin curl sets, there is a lot more to it than just that.

Vintage pin curling illustration - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill

There is so much information out on the internet regarding pin curling and how to do it, but it’s not that easy to find, nor is there a comprehensive compilation in any one place. I found that there was a lot of gaps in my knowledge of pin curls and wet sets that I have had to fill in by researching a vast array of different resources.

In order to assist any beginner vintage or pin up aspirants out there, I thought I would try to track all this information down and compile it into an easy to follow ‘How To’ format. I shall not rewrite the information, or try remake the tutorials I have found, rather I aim to bring them all together in such a way as to hopefully make the art of pin curling easier to accomplish.

With this in mind, I am starting a series on pin curling, and after this introduction we will cover the basics; what is a pin curl, the different types of pin curls, and how to do them. Later on in the series, we shall review advanced pin curling techniques, what tools you will need to create successful wet sets, guides to hair setting patterns and more. So please join me for Pin Curling 101 and beyond.

What is a Pin Curl?


The structure of a pin curl - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill

A pin curl is a strand of hair that has been rolled from tip to roots in concentric circles that lie inside each other. The ends are tucked into the centre of these rings to create a nice smooth curl with a corkscrew effect, that is wider at the base {roots of the hair; near your scalp} and is narrower at the ends {tips of your hair}.

Pin curls were used to style hair for a smooth, sophisticated look; as the setting of the pin curls in certain directions, with mind to particular partings, forces the hair to fall in a specific manner. This allows for greater control over the final look, as well as a sleek, pleasing finish to the style.

Pin curls were in their heyday during the 1940s and 1950s, and somewhat during the 1960s as well, although less so. Fashion of the times was greatly dictated by the allure of glamour and flawless femininity, and the pin curl lent itself nicely to this because of the appeal of hair control as well as the elegance of style it produced.

A sleek vintage style that radiates glamour - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill


4 Easy Steps for Perfect Pin Curls:

A sculptured pin curl is characterized by each loop being tucked inside the last loop, the ends carefully secured inside the curl. The result is nice, neat sculptured curls, that look professional and beautiful. There are four steps for rolling a pin curl manually.

Step 1:  Part hair, and clip away sections you are not working on. Portion out a inch sized square strand of hair using a comb, preferably a rat’s tail comb. Comb through to remove tangles.

Step 2:  Dampen hair if necessary. Apply setting lotion to strand, particularly paying attention to the mid-length to ends as they need the most hold. Applying setting lotion to each individual strand, rather than the whole head, before pin curling is important for those with hard to curl hair and can make or break the success of your set.

Step 3:   Carefully wrap the ends of the strand around two fingers ~ one for a small curl, three for a large one. Remove loop from fingers and carefully roll the loop towards the scalp, making sure that the loops are wrap up in each other and that the ends are securely tucked in.

Important: Do not twist the strand of hair at any point of creating the pin curl, because this will make the curl frizzy!

Step 4:  Secure with a clip on the ‘open side of the curl’; that is the side of the curl opposite to the side with the stem, or roots, of the hair. 

For those that learn visually, here are some selected videos detailing how to pin curl.

 


 



Two Types of Pin Curls and Their Function:

There are two types of sculptured pin curls ~ flat pin curls that are clipped securely to the scalp, or standing pin curls, sometimes known as barrel pin curls, that are clipped in such a way as to stand away from the head.

The flat pin curl can be rolled in two directions; either clockwise or anti-clockwise. Like so:

Clockwise pin curl - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill

A clockwise curl that faces away from your face on the right side of your head ~ or otherwise known as a backwards curl

 Anti-clockwise pin curl - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill

An anti-clockwise curl that faces towards your face on the right side of your head ~ or otherwise known as a forwards curl

Standing pin curl or barrel pin curl - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill

These barrel curls are commonly used on the crown to create volume on the top of the head, and are useful for styling fluffy bangs, or smooth rolls, such as Betty Page bangs, or victory rolls.

Barrel pin curls on the crown create volume - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill


Barrel curls can also be rolled two ways. An Underneath Roll, as depicted above, or with an Upper Roll, where the roll sits on top of the stem, opposite to the picture. Naturally, the upper roll will not produce volume at the roots, but it is one method to create looser curls for your fringe.

Now that we have looked at the anatomy of the pin curl, here is the step by step guide for creating a pin curl wet set.

The resulting pin curl elegance - Pin Curls 101 | Lavender & Twill


10 Simple Steps for a Successful Pin Curl Set:

  1. Towel dry clean, shampooed hair. Hair should be damp, but not wet. Use a spray bottle to dampen if necessary. If the hair is too dry it will not hold the curl.

  2. Comb through hair to remove tangles.

  3. Apply setting lotion and comb through hair.

  4. Part hair neatly, and section ready for curling. Clip back any sections of hair that are not being worked on.

  5. Select an inch square portion of hair to curl.{This is standard  ~ the size of the portion may need to be adjusted for hair thickness and setting style.}

  6. Roll hair carefully. The curls can be done in neat rows, or according to a setting pattern. If using a hair setting pattern, pay particular attention to the parts, placement and direction of the curls. Take note if the curls are standing or flat, whether you need rollers or pin curls. Taking time and care to set the hair results in better hairdos.

  7. Make sure the curls are completely dry before removing clips or rollers. A hair dryer, or a hair drying cap can be used to speed this process up. Most sets will take seven hours or longer to dry completely, depending on the thickness of the curls.

  8. If there are loose curls, touch them up with a curling iron or hot rollers.

  9. Gently finger comb through the curls to separate them, then brush out and arrange in desired style.

  10. Apply a flexible, soft hold hairspray to keep the curls in place, or alternatively, use a light application of pomade to smooth down fly-aways.

Next up in the series,  we will cover in depth the all important topic of The Brush Out. There is a lot more to brushing our your pin curls than simply running a brush through your newly bouncing coiffeur, so we will look at the different techniques needed to achieve your dream of a sleek, charming ‘do.

xox,

bonita

༺ ♡ ༻

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