Sunday, January 24, 2010

Silver Screen Sunday {Groovy Movie}

I'm afraid to say there is no 'proper' Silver Screen Sunday, today. I'm about to embark on Swing Camp Oz, an entire week of swing dancing and what-not. I'm more than a little bit nervous and also quite a bit intimidated by the thought of so much physical exercise. I can assure you my 'exercise regime' generally consists of walking to the television to turn it on and back to the couch. So, hopefully I survive this week. If not, send flowers!

As I mentioned, I haven't the time for a proper Silver Screen Sunday. Instead, I shall leave you with this short from 1944 entitled Groovie Movie, a spoof on instructional dance videos and also efforts to find high culture in the dance. It's rather corny but I think it's fun and more than a bit cute. I like the overuse of slang. There's a little bit written about it here, although this page says it was filmed in 1942.

If I do manage to survive, I shall see you all in about a week's time.

Andi B. Goode

Saturday, January 23, 2010

A Night, or Two, on the Town

On Thursday night I went out for my sister's 38th birthday. We had dinner at the Pancake Kitchen and then I went on to the Jade Monkey to see a friend's band play. It was terribly hot and there was not a single person there not feeling the heat. I can't remember the exact temperature but I think it reached 40 celsius. I decided to wear a dress I recently purchased from Dear Golden Vintage on etsy.

Outfit details: flowers - cheap shop/discount store; faux pearls - Hero vintage; 1950s dress - etsy; bracelet - via mum; shoes - Rubi Shoes.

I think my hair turned out somewhere between Bettie Page (the curls dropped later in the night and my hair was closer to her length) and Barbara Stanwyck's wig in Double Indemnity.

I don't usually wear a lot of jewellery but I felt like wearing an extra ring so I fished this one out of one of my drawers. I bought it when I was in California in 2006. I got it from a gold-mining settlement that's set up as a tourist attraction but I can't for the life of me remember what it's called! It's made from a nail and I wish I had bought more of them when I was there.

Close-up of my bracelet.

A very poor photo of my handbag. This is my day-to-day bag. I love it. It fits everything I need in it and adds a little Kustom Kulture to my outfits.

A detail of the fabric of the dress.

Last night I went out for my friend Jacoba's birthday. We met at Supermild and had a bit of a dance. It was a chilly night so I wore a warmer dress...which turned out to be a mistake as it was terribly hot on the dancefloor!

This has kind of become my 'femme fatale' dress as I wore it for one of my photo projects in 2008 in which I created my own film noir; I played the 'femme fatale' Yvonne Savage. You can see the images here.

Outfit details: hair flower & earrings - Diva; faux pearls - Hero vintage; 1940s N.O.S. dress - Red Ruby Vintage; 1970s beaded purse - gift; vintage nylons - Antique Market; shoes - Spend-Less.

Andi B. Goode

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Andi B. Goode, the artiste.

Thanks so much to everyone who left suggestions for me on yesterday's post. They've all been super helpful!

A couple of you said you'd be interested in seeing more of my art, so I shall share a few images with you. These were from the series I worked on for pretty much the entirety of 2009. First of all, though, here is my artist statement for the series:

My work examines the aesthetic qualities of women’s fashion, in particular those from the 1940s and 1950s and I am inspired by the sumptuous colour in the Technicolor musicals of the same eras. I am also interested in the aesthetics of form and colour and its organisation within the frame; films such as West Side Story and On the Town demonstrate this use of colour. Costumes are colour coordinated within scenes yet interesting juxtapositions of colours are also used.

Along with exploring the aesthetic, my work also deals with the idea of self-expression through fashion. I believe that by turning to the clothes of bygone eras, an alternative and individual identity, which is not enforced by mainstream media, can be created. However, the models remain anonymous so that the emphasis is on the vintage clothing as a universal symbol and not the individuals who inhabit the pieces.

This series is a celebration of both the visual beauty of vintage clothes as well as the feeling of liberation they can afford to those who wear them, today.

The Sophisticate's Twist
The Sophisticate's Twist

'S Wonderful
'S Wonderful

Razzle Dazzle
Razzle Dazzle

These images, along with some others (which you can see here...the ones I'm referring to are those which have titles) were selected to be shown in the Helpmann Academy Graduate exhibition, which starts at the end of February. My work has also been selected for the promotional material for the exhibition, which is very exciting.

I did fairly extensive research to 'back up' my work, including sending out surveys to other girls who have similar fashion styles to mine, and reading a fair bit of literature on fashion, etc. I found Elizabeth Wilson's work to be particularly interesting, especially this book. My reading was only preliminary, of course, so I don't know a lot about this area but find it interesting. I shall leave you with a quote, which is quite long, (from that book) which I found to be particularly relevant to my work:

"Fashion resembles photography. Both are liminal forms, on the threshold between art and not-art. Both are industrially produced, yet deeply individual. Both are poised ambiguously between present and past: the photograph congeals the essence of the now, while fashion freezes the moment in an eternal gesture of the-only-right-way-to-be. Yet nothing more poignantly testifies to transience than the embalmed moments preserved in those old snapshots where we pose in yesterday’s clothes. Far from stopping time, they locate us in history. ‘Now is past’ wrote the eighteenth century poet, John Clare, and the ‘now’ of fashion is nostalgia in the making.

Clothes are among the most fraught objects in the material world of things, since they are so closely involved with the human body and the human life cycle. They are objects, but they are also images. They communicate more subtly than most objects and commodities, precisely because of that intimate relationship to our bodies and our selves, so that we speak (however loosely) of both a ‘language’ and a ‘psychology’ of dress."

I hope you all enjoyed this. It was never really my intention to share my art on this blog but my work is very much inspired by my love of vintage fashion, anyway. I'll tell you, though, I never thought I would get through last year and I'm incredibly proud of my work. My lighting skills alone are infinitely better than they were at the beginning of 2009.

Andi B. Goode

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

I'll Get By With a Little Help...

So, I have this dress and it is beautiful and I feel like a princess (of the Disney variety) when I wear it but I also feel very much like a little girl. This is not something I am particularly fond of but I don't feel as though I am ready to get rid of it. I think this dress deserves one more chance from me. So, I come to you, dear blog readers, in hope of some suggestions. What can I do to make myself feel more like a woman and less like a little girl going to a birthday party when I wear this dress?

Disney Princess

I was thinking of wearing different shoes. Maybe the ones I'm wearing here or even the ones in this photo. And I would most definitely wear my hair down and curled, like I usually do, now. But any suggestions would be very much appreciated. I'm reluctant to part with this dear dress as I bought it when I was in San Francisco in 2006, so it has a lot of good memories attached to it.

Whilst I’m asking questions, I’d also like some feedback. I’d like to know what you all like about my blog, what you might not like so much, what you’d like to see more of, etc.

Would you like to know more about my forays into swing dancing? Other things I like about the eras I love? I do post about movies, obviously, though never critically and I occasionally post about music, too. Would you like more about the music I like? My style icons? My vintage swoons? More about where I shop in Adelaide? Maybe to take a look at my vintage family photos?

Last time I asked something similar a few people suggested tutorials but I was kind of stuck as to what to do. There already seem to be tutorials for most of the styles I do (or, at least, similar) but if there is anything specific you’d like a tutorial on, I could give it a bash.

I think my problem is that I have so many ideas I don’t know where to start!

But here are a few post ideas I’m working on…it’d be great if you let me know what you’re most interested in:

The cost of vintage, with specific reference to Adelaide and etsy
What to wear when summer makes you feel lazy
A little ‘review’ of different stockings I’ve bought
Vegan friendly vintage inspired shoes

I also had a request to do a post showcasing my hats, which I'm more than happy to do, as well.

Forgive me if this is a lot to process but I’m kind of feeling as though I’ve come to a bit of a standstill and keep posting the same things over and over.

Thanks to anyone who took the time to read this and hopefully you can help me out. It’s very much appreciated.

Andi B. Goode

Monday, January 18, 2010

Fleur's Glamorous Giveaway

Also, if you don't know about it already, the lovely Fleur is hosting a wonderful giveaway over at her blog. Go here to enter for the chance to win this gorgeous lingerie.
Good luck to everyone who enters!

Andi B. Goode

Silver Screen Sunday {The Gang's All Here}

This week's Silver Screen Sunday takes a look at Busby Berkeley's 1943 movie The Gang's All Here. Now this bran of musical is not a particular favourite of mine - I much prefer the song's to be integrated as part of the plot and used in lieu of dialogue in certain parts. But it's still fun to watch this type especially when it comes to this film. The plot may be a little thin but there are some very good tunes (Benny Goodman and his orchestra appear in it!), a little bit of swing dancing, lots of amazing costumes, very big hair (which I go mad for) and the Lady with the Tutti Frutti Hat!

Her costumes may not be particularly practical for day-to-day wear but you can't say they're not colourful or fun, can you?

"Some people say I dress too gay, but every day I feel so gay, and when I'm gay I dress that way, is something wrong with that? Noooo!"

Other things I practically swooned over in this film:

Lots and lots of lovely hair accessories but, most importantly, bows.

Amazing and, sometimes, ridiculous hats. When Mrs Peyton Potter, played by Charlotte Greenwood, sees Carmen's hat in the bottom left, this is what she says: "That hat! I'd better watch my lampshades and bell-cords!"

Alice Faye's incredibly pretty pink dress. I think I may have squealed when I saw this. It's the perfect shade of pink!

This was the closest I could find on etsy. It's not quite as deep but it's just as pretty! Found here.

Then there was all the long, long hair. I have had the feeling to get my hair cut a bit shorter so I can style it to some of the cute '30s styles I like. Then I watched this movie and decided my hair needs to be longer again. (The girl with the shorts and long-sleeved blouse in the bottom right has the longest hair in that shot but Alice Faye's hair is fairly long, too).

Instead of looking for dresses on etsy, like I usually do, I took some inspiration from Carmen and looked at some fruity jewellery instead.

I'm quite taken with these cornucopia earrings. I would mind having them for myself! Found here.

These little clustered earrings are just darling! Found here.

I also wouldn't mind having these. Too bad my birthday's so far away! Found here.

This little set is really quite nice. Found here.

And here's a rather bizarre sequence involving giant bananas.

I've edited this to add one thing: last week Dorthe Mey asked me where I get all of my DVDs from. My answer is that almost all of my DVDs have been bought in stores here. A few have been from amazon (check at the bottom of the site and you should find that there are international sites, too) but, other than a few exceptions, I buy them all in stores around Adelaide. Atlantic DVD is apparently the biggest region 4 DVD store (self-proclaimed) but I also find Ezy DVD to be a fairly decent resource, for region 4 DVDs. I'd also note that they'd be largely in PAL format. Kate of Silents and Talkies has offered to share her DVD collection and Raquelle of Out of the Past wrote on 'How to be a Classic Film Fan Without TCM'. I hope that helps a little bit!

Andi B. Goode

P.S. Would anyone be able to recommend some online resources about knitting from vintage patterns? Anything about Australian/British patterns would be the most helpful. Thanks in advance.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Andi B. Goode is a Curious Cat

Last night (being Saturday night) I went to see Cats, for the second time (the first being when I was about eight or nine years old), and, oh my, it's amazing. There aren't a whole lot of chances to see musicals in Adelaide so I try to take every chance that I get. I wanted to buy something new to wear but I decided to save my pennies and give this dress, which my wonderful mother made me, another outing.

Outfit details: 1950s hat - etsy; necklace - Diva; gloves - gift; dress - made by my mother (from a repro vintage pattern); Jonathan Aston hold-ups - Myer; shoes - Rubi Shoes.

After the show, Jacoba and I went on a suicide mission to Chocolate Bean. I say suicide mission because we consumed lethal amounts of chocolate. I had a lavender truffle, jasmine chocolate icy and half a slice of walnut cake (the icing was as thick as the cake) which had chocolate sauce drizzled over it. It may or may not sound like much but, trust me, I felt ready to die. It was all divine, though.

Then we went to the Crown and Anchor and one of Jacoba's friends politely asked me if I had been to a funeral. I was rather amused.

Now I am keen to buy myself a copy of Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats by T.S. Eliot and the soundtrack to Cats (I may have to go back to the theatre during the week and pick up a copy) so I can pretend I'm a Jellicle Cat and have a little sing-along.

Has anyone else seen Cats? Which Cat do you wish you were? I'm not sure which one I'd like to be but I do know I'd definitely swoon over the Rum Tum Tugger. As an aside, a cat just walked past my window. She must have known I was thinking about her kin.

Andi B. Goode

P.S. I had had this all set up to post tomorrow morning so that I could do a Silver Screen Sunday, today. However, I've just spent a couple of hours screen-capping and now I'm pooped! So, the SSS shall have to wait. Perhaps one day I'll actually do it on a Sunday.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Outfit Post

On Thursday night I went out to dinner (t0 the Ed Castle) for my friend, Katey's, birthday.

Outfit details: 1950s hat - Red Ruby Vintage; faux pearls - Hero Vintage or Gilles Street Market; 1950s dress - Exclusive Vintage; gloves - Good Will; belt - gift; vintage David Jones' stockings - Red Ruby Vintage; shoes - Rubi Shoes; purse (pictured below) - garage sale.

These are literally the only two photos I took as I was feeling rather ill before I went out and was impressed that I managed to take any photos of myself at all, to tell the truth.

As you can see, I have yet to choose another title for my outfit posts. Thanks to everyone for the suggestions...I shall ponder them and see what I think fits!

Andi B. Goode

Friday, January 15, 2010

Is it a dress...?

On Wednesday I found the most amazing thing that I have come across in quite some time.

Is that a cute 1940s dress I see?

Hmmm...what's that?


It's a playsuit!

And I can't remember where I saved this from but it's pretty much the same thing as mine. I just love these little playsuits with matching skirts. They're quite versatile!

Honestly, you could have knocked me over with a feather when I saw this hanging up on the door of a shop I went into with my dad. The tag says 'A Tom Boy Fashion' and it's by 'Racketeer' but I could find out anything about the label. The only other information on the tag is that it comes from the United States. If anyone else has something by the same label, I'd love to know about it!

Also, I just realised that the Thoroughly Modern Millie edition of Silver Screen Sunday marked my 100th post! Hup! Hup! Huzzah!

Andi B. Goode

P.S. Forgive the silly photos - I was so happy about my playsuit that I was in rather a silly mood - and messy background.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Outfit Post

Yesterday I had to go into town and, as I didn't have time to set my hair the night before, I decided to wear my hair in plaits and built the outfit around that.

Outfit details: ribbon - ?; vintage nurse's uniform - Rewind Recycled Fashions; ankle socks - Big W; shoes - KMart.

I don't know if I've ever posted about inspiration for an outfit before, but this was the inspiration for yesterday. Obviously, she is wearing trousers and a vest, and I was wearing a dress but I picked up on the details of plaits, ankle socks and lace-up shoes. As an aside, this picture is from a booklet of knitting patterns that I bought a while back. If anyone is interested, I was thinking of scanning them all and uploading them somewhere, perhaps as a .pdf.

Also, I need to think of a more interesting title than just 'Outfit post'...any suggestions?

Andi B. Goode

Monday, January 11, 2010

Silver Screen Sunday {Thoroughly Modern Millie}

A little while ago I had a request to look at Thoroughly Modern Millie for Silver Screen Sunday. So, today, that is what I am going to do! The film was made in 1967 but is set in the roaring twenties. You can read a fairly detailed description of the plot here, but the film more or less follows Millie (played by the beautiful Julie Andrews), who has reinvented herself as a 'modern' as she tries to marry her boss. I think the film does poke a little bit of fun at the era but it seems like it's out of love.

One of my favourite parts of this film is this little bit:

I also like the incorporation of title cards from time to time.

One of my favourite thing about musicals is that scenes are so often colour-coordinated, like this one! I couldn't find my favourite scene of the film (when Julie Andrews and Mary Tyler Moore are tap-dancing in the elevator) but this scene is definitely a runner-up:

My favourite variation is the 'slapioca'.

Although the line of this dress is not something I personally like wearing, I like the idea of incorporating a skinny tie and a snappy blouse into an outfit. Actually, I definitely have rather a 'thing' for skinny ties. There are a few to be found on etsy but you can also find them in various colours here. I'm also quite partial to Millie's pom-pom hat.

I love Millie's 'vamp' look. It's very dramatic! I like the half-and-half style of the dress and cloche hat.

I also couldn't resist adding in these pictures of James Fox also done up in the 'vamp' look. And I do like the checkerboard details of Millie's outfit (that design always makes me think of ska/2 Tone Records.)

When it comes to fashion, my favourite eras are definitely the 1940s and 1950s but I still love the fashions of the 1920s, even though they do not love me at all. For today I've steered away from authentic 1920s and looked, instead, at 1960s clothes which draw inspiration from the '20s.

This plaid dress is very, very similar to one worn by Julie Andrews in the film. Found here on etsy.

This yellow dress would fit in quite well in the 'Tapioca' scene. Found here on etsy.

This dress doesn't come with the blouse but I think it looks awfully cute this way! And it reminds me of Millie's outfit with the tie. Found here on etsy.

And a pom pom hat! Not quite as bright as Millie's but just as cute. Found here on etsy.

Andi B. Goode

PS If this is vague in anyway whatsoever, I apologise. It's over 40C today (104F) and the internet will only work in the hottest room in the house, where the benefits of airconditioning will not reach. So, this was a little rushed but hopefully still enjoyable.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Happy Birthday, Mr. Presley.

Today, I just wanted to post a little Happy Birthday to one of my all-time favourite 'vintage' musicians: The King himself, Elvis Presley. He would have been 75 today.

I know it's quite cliched but I do believe that his earlier recordings are amongst some of the finest to ever be recorded by anyone. Sam Phillips began recording local (Memphis) blues and rhythm and blues musicians in his tiny Sun Studio in 1950. He knew that many of the artists who passed through his studio had something special to offer - among them being the likes of Riley "B.B." King and Chester "Howlin' Wolf" Burnett - but he feared they would never be able to achieve anything more than moderate success on the charts. He wanted a musician to take this new style of music, which was sweeping Memphis and the surrounding area, to a mainstream audience and knew he would need to find a young white musician to do this.

Late one afternoon during the summer of 1953, Phillips finally found the young musician he was looking for when 18 year old Elvis Presley walked timidly through the front door of Sun Studio. It wasn’t until a year later in 1954, however, that Phillips brought Elvis back into the studio to play with guitarist Scotty Moore and bass player Bill Black who were struggling to find the right sound for their country band the Starlite Wranglers.

They recorded together unsuccessfully until the evening of July 5, 1954 – exhausted after another full but unproductive day, Phillips and the other musicians were about to call it quits. Suddenly, Presley began singing an old blues song by Arthur “Big Boy” Crudup called “That’s All Right (Mama)”. Sitting in the recording booth, Phillips knew immediately that he had finally found the sound for which he had been searching – and the young performer to sing it.

The song was released 2 weeks later and it immediately began to cause a sensation among both white and black listeners.

In less than a year Elvis became the most popular young entertainer in the mid-south and by the summer of ’55 Phillips realised that Elvis had outgrown the limited resources of Sun Studio – in November of the same year Colonel Tom Parker arranged for RCA Records to purchase the young singer’s contract from Sun Records for $35,000. By the time he was drafted by the US Army in 1958, Presley had already sold more than 16 million records for RCA and had established himself as one of the dominant figures in the history of popular music.

This is one definitely one of my favourite versions of Blue Moon. It's thoroughly haunting.

As well as being one of my favourite music artists, I have to say I dig Elvis' style, (mainly up to the early-mid '60s, anyway).

Photo found here.

And if you want to dress like The King? Lansky Brothers have their 'Clothier to the King' line (Elvis used to buy many of his cool threads from them).

This reproduction of the jacket Elvis wore in Speedway is definitely one of my favourites. I love the vibrant red and the racing stripes.

Although it was originally a Carl Perkins song, Blue Suede Shoes has been synonymous with Elvis Presley and these are certainly a nice pair!

I hope you all enjoyed my little birthday tribute to The King. It was impromptu so it may be a little sloppy but I didn't want it to be too long or too brief.

Andi B. Goode

P.S. I'd also like to note that, whilst looking for pictures for this post, I was overcome by many a swoon! Oh come another.

A lot of the information in this post comes from The History of Rock and Roll by David Shirley.