Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Review: The Rose Bowl Flea Market

This flea market, in Pasadena, CA, is billed as "the world's largest flea market" and boy, they aren't kidding.
This thing is enormous! Like, there's-no-possible-way-to-see-it-all enormous.

Two Sundays ago was the first time I'd been in 20 years...which is weird because I live relatively close by...
It won't be that long until my next visit! I had a great time and found a pretty decent pile of booty, despite hardly even trying to score deals.

Here are some great things I saw (and passed up):

travel theme needlepoint bag...way expensive!

souvenir pillowslips...including a "Lindberg" one! Very rare.

Drool-worthy furniture

this couch is repro, but isn't it fab?

tables to go with the green couch

bowls for the Airstream (I wish)

re-arranged Italian army bag...huge
Here's what I ended up getting:

like I could pass up leopard :-)

This one's to paint tikis or something on...
all silk, from the $1 table
glitter! Lucite!
This last handbag is one of those convertible styles! The cover comes off and reverses to shiny black patent leather. Without the cover, the bag is navy blue grosgrain-type fabric. Three bags in one! This one's going up in my Etsy shop, I think, once I get it cleaned up.

Here are some tips if you decide to visit:

~wear the most comfortable & supportive shoes you own. Seriously. This place is enormous and all on concrete...your dogs will be barking at the end of the day!

~bring a big 'ol pile of cash, with lots of small bills. Remarkably, many of the vendors still only take cash (dur...ever heard of Square? seriously, vendor-people...you're missing sales).

~wear layers....it starts off really cold in the morning, because it's sort of down in a canyon. Once the sun is shining it starts heating up pretty fast. When I first got there at about 8 am I was cozy in jeans, jacket, hoodie, t-shirt, hat, gloves and light scarf. By noon I was down to the jeans and t-shirt!

~those rolly cart things are awesome, but if you don't have one of those, at least bring a big, lightweight tote bag or something to haul your booty in.

~you might consider bringing drinks, water, snacks...they really gouge you for the drinks, and if you're vegan, like me, there are no food options. Next time I go I honestly think I'll bring a whole lunch for myself.

~pace yourself, take breaks, and strategize....focus on what you're really looking for. It's really easy to get overwhelmed and start walking around in a daze like a zombie. Don't become a Rose Bowl zombie!

Last, but not least, here's a link the the Rose Bowl Website

Monday, November 19, 2012

Construction Zone...No Hard Hat Required!

I'm very excited to announce that I'll be making some changes to my blog in the next few weeks!

No protective gear required, however...

Why so serious, Johnny?

 For now, I've got two new ways for you to get your Vintage Advantage...now you can subscribe by email, or you can subscribe by RSS feed!

Stay tuned!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Grace and Mom

Happy Birthday to the ever-lovely Grace Kelly, who was born on this day in 1929.

Here she is in a publicity shot for 1954's Rear Window, one of my favorite Hitchcock films:

a great example of the influence of Dior's "New Look"

Anyone who loves Hitchcock films like I do, and who loves vintage clothing, certainly has to be fond of Grace...
Her clothes in Rear Window and Dial M for Murder (also released in '54) are so gorgeous! They were designed by costumer Edith Head (I'm reading a fabulously entertaining book about Ms. Head right now...stay tuned for a review very soon!)

I particularly love this beautifully graphic black and white dress:

Ms. Head loved to design beautiful back details

and this fabulous sage-green and white outfit...when she enters the room, it looks so prim and covered-up...

Miss Priss, right?

and then she removes the jacket and the top is so (relatively) skimpy...you can't see it here, but it's almost totally backless!

Hmmm, not so prissy after all!

Another favorite is the beautiful red dress from Dial M for Murder

Scarlet woman

I must admit that for a long while I had a bit of a crush on Ms. Kelly! I think it was because of my Mom. You see, my Mom passed away when I was 17, just a few years after Grace Kelly tragically died in a car crash. I always thought that my Mom looked a bit like Grace, and in that way that teenagers have, I sort of mashed the two together in my memories as this sort of Beautiful Mother Tragic Princess figure...boy, there's one for the analyst's chair!

Here's my Mom:

This Grace Kelly-Mom thing stuck in my head for a long time, and then something funny happened:  I saw  the 1953 movie Mogambo. In this film, Grace plays the young, naive wife of an anthropologist, who meets the rough & tumble game hunter played by Clark Gable on an African safari. She plays opposite Ava Gardner, who's a plucky world-wise show girl.

That was it! Grace's character in this movie is such a simpering wuss, and so annoying, that it snapped me right out of my crush!

Grace Kelly and Ava Gardner in Mogambo

 I wanted Ava to kick her whimpering little butt, but alas, Ava's character was too classy for that. Funnily enough, apparently the three actors, Grace, Ava, and Clark, got along famously during the shoot and became fast friends.

Now, with my crush dissolved (mostly!) away, I can just appreciate Grace for the talented actress that she was...and appreciate her beautiful costumes & style!
What's your favorite Grace Kelly movie?
Think your Mom looks like a famous actress? I'd love to hear!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Dia De Los Muertos

The real Frida didn't smile this much :-)
That was me, last night, dressed up for the West Hollywood Halloween Carnavale. What a madhouse! I was worried that no-one would know who I "was", and man was I surprised! I guess I know a little bit of what it's like to be a celebrity, with all the people wanting to take pics with me & shouting out "Frida!"
It was really fun...I love to do elaborate costumes for Halloween, but I've never gotten such a response before. As an artist & former art teacher, it warms my heart to know that so many people love Frida Kahlo. I guess there is hope for the human race, after all...

It seems that every Halloween has a big trend or two, and last night's seemed to be the "Dia De Los Muertos" costume with flowery skeleton makeup...I saw a ton of gorgeous examples last night, and would you believe that I took ZERO pictures of them? I completely forgot! Derp, lerp....

 Anyway, the traditional Mexican festival of Dia De Los Muertos is becoming a really big thing here in So Cal...
 I love the idea of having a special day to honor your loved ones that have passed away, and I think it caps off the Halloween season in a nice way.
I've been a fan of the sugar skull motif for a long time.

Don't know if you all have seen these, but along with my vintage clothing store I also sell my hand-painted bags (sometimes shoes & other things, too) in my Etsy shop MoMosMadness

Here are a few recent creations:

Love the two-tone...these bags are hard to find!

a petite one

my fave so far...


The last one there should've been finished weeks ago and up in my shop for sale, but...life happens. And by "life" I mean looking at Pinterest and watching The Walking Dead.

Oh well...Feliz Dia De Los Muertos!!