Thursday, December 31, 2009

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Coming Soon

Fast Eddie's

Pin Up Skater

Monday, December 28, 2009

Bravo Penelope for wearing vintage!

'Penélope Cruz is among the stellar leading ladies in Rob Marshall’s Nine, which also stars Judi Dench, Marion Cotillard, Nicole Kidman, and Kate Hudson.

At its New York premiere, Cruz made a bold statement in a vintage Chanel goddess gown accessorized with pear-shaped diamond chandelier earrings from Chopard.'

I think her stylist should have chosen a deeper color red for her lipstick and have to agree with Debutante Clothing that it would have made a big difference if only the lipstick had been the correct shade, it was after all, very important in that era.

For instance, Chanel has a Red N°5, Armani Cosmetics carries a Matte Silk Lipstick No. 9, Nars's Fire Down Below...

Some of my vintage loving friends swear by MAC Matte Lipstick in Russian Red.

I wore Revlon's Cherries In The Snow for many years.

Then there are the shades by an old brand called Poppy, by Poppy King originating in Australia and now in the US and online. The brand in now called Lipstick Queen, they are typical 1940's colours.

What is your favorite shade of red lipstick?

Saturday, December 26, 2009

How to continue when I feel I really shouldnt..

Its the day after Christmas and I hope everyone had a fantastic holiday with their loved ones.

This is not a cheery post. It is about an Indie artist by the name of Vic Chestnutt, someone who had a big influence in my life. I am in the vintage clothing business but music is a big part of my life and many of my clients are in the music business. Vic's music is not for everyone, it has been described as Southern Gothic at its best. Whatever they call it in the music business Vic's words are certainly worth listening to, he had a lot to say.

His record company reported that Vic fell into a comma on Thursday, Christmas Eve, sadly Vic died yesterday Christmas Day at about 3PM in his hometown of Athens GA.

One of the things I loved about living in Athens was running into Vic here and there from time to time, at the 40 Watt Club where he performed, at Big Lots...

For those that dont know about Vic he was involved in a serious car crash when he was 18 that left him paralyzed and with serious health issues.

The Obit in The New York Times printed yesterday "Mr. Chesnutt had a cracked, small voice but sang with disarming candor about a struggle for peace in a life filled with pain."

Through the years he incurred so much debt due to his health that I'm certain it contributed to depression, which he often spoke of, wrote and sang about.

He had health insurance, paid 500. a month for 60 to 80% coverage but still was not enough because of 'pre existing conditions' Vic recently told an interviewer that he feared becoming homeless.

When I attended the Health Insurance Reform rally in Seattle I did it for people like Vic.

He gave a couple of interviews about the Health Reform, maybe some folks may not agree with what he had to say but this is a man who lived through it.

Singer-songwriter VIC CHESNUTT won't stay quiet Winnipeg Free Press 19/11/2009

I was introduced to Vic's music by Widespread Panic, the song I first heard was Aunt Avis.

another song, Blight, one Dave Schools, bass player for Widespread Panic sings and knows is a favorite of mine became my Halloween costume at a WP show in New Orleans 2000.

I wore a vintage black Gothic dress with black wings. While Dave sang Blight I presented him the In & Out earrings I was wearing, the little table inside the Cauldron of 'vapors that vile humans brew', the jar of 'prismatic eyes'...the 'downward spiral' - a pendant of a tornado...


We sat on the couch a playin'
Touch the tongue and bump the table
But I was scorned after little ado
Tossed right out into the blue

I set into a downward spiral
Caught an illness that was literally viral
I heard some words of wisdom the other day
And they went in one ear and out the other one

I awoke from this beatific binge
With prismatic eyes, now lite is tinged
With all the vapors that the vile humans brew
Shining through the.. blight of you
Shining through the.. blight of you
Shining through the.. blight of you

After my accident in 99 Walkin' and Blight became the songs that I drew strength from 'Shining through the blight of you'

Recently my friends and I got a kick out of Fringe's glyphs or easter eggs, spelling out BLIGHT on one August show

This page is a tribute to Vic Chesnutt and is accepting donations on behalf of his family to defray the expenses associated with his recent hospitalizations and death.

100% of all funds raised will go to Vic's family.

In addition, figure8studio will donate 25% of the sales from our store this and the month of January to help Vic's family.

Thursday, December 24, 2009


at figure8studio




Friday, December 11, 2009

figure8studio Featured at DresStory!

DresStory is a blog for those who love vintage and feel inspired by it, vintage with a story.

We at figure8studio, are honored to be the featured DresStory's Launch contributor.

Audrey, DresStory's owner, asked what is my current favorite item? We recently added a Gold Brocade Bombshell Halter vintage Dress with matching Jewelled Jacket we've had in our collection for a few years, each time I handle the garment I am amazed at the beauty, quality and construction of the pieces.

The label has an interesting story of its own, the owner was such a prolific artist that her work resides at the Castellani Art Museum.

My first contribution was a very short story. Not being sure how lengthy our pieces should the long run we believe it worked great.

The Vintage Bulletin and DresStory are both current favorite vintage blogs. We are thrilled to be a part of such a talented community.

Please allow us to share with you our love for a stunning little bridal dress, the story was inspired by the pink diamond engagement ring my dad presented to my mom in 1951.

Please visit DresStory and support our community.

Warmest holiday wishes.


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Top Of The Heap!

New York New York.

The Universe is back in order.

Hideki Matsui finally gets his much deserved ring and MVP!

I hope he stays in pinstripes.

Time to celebrate!

Baseball's all that's real!

My beloved Bronx Bombers return home for Game 6 of the World Series.

Daddy's new house needs the aroma of champagne & Matsui could sure use World Series *BLING* on his finger.

~Vintage 1952 World Series Ring.

They say the Yankees are the team most people love to hate, that's because there is no denying they are simply the BEST.

I grew up in the Bronx, home of egg creams, handball, stickball and Yankee Stadium, you could practically smell the hot dogs and popcorn through the entire borough when there was a game going on.

Sometimes its difficult to explain to someone who is not from there how baseball was ingrained in my culture. I watched baseball with dad, religiously. Those were some of the best times of my childhood. Dad was a hardcore Cincinnati Reds fan but he had respect for the Yankees.

I only had eyes for the pinstripes, even when they were going through their most difficult years in the 70s.

Later, in my early 30s I worked for a time with an organization of which Steinbrenner is a member. I spoke with the man, several times, he was always gracious, accommodating and generous. I will not lie when I say that I was pleasantly surprised.

I now live in the NW but no matter, I will always be a die hard Yankee fan. You can take the girl out of the Bronx but you cant take the Bronx out of the girl.

My mother was what you could call a super Yankee fan, her favorite player was Derek Jeter

Mom was in her 70s when she stood up on the hood of her car during the parade the City of NY held in honor of the Yankees victory of the 1999 World Series. She taped every single Yankee game! Im not that bad, I only record the World Series, if the Yankees are playing, the Parade and the Key To The City ceremony.

I have been doing a bit of vintage Yankee sleuthing

World Series watch 1923

World Series 1937 Official Program 25 cents!

A vintage magazine AD

1939 Spring Training St Pete FL.

'When Mantle learned that he and DiMaggio would have plaques side by side, he insisted that DiMaggio's "hang a little higher than mine"

Gehrig & Shawkey go fishing at the golf course LOL!

'As part of Gehrig's surprising desire to take Hollywood by storm he had earlier set his sights on playing Tarzan.'

"These were the most revealing portraits of Gehrig's body ever taken . . . his lower body appeared to belong to another species, neither man nor ape. Each thigh was bigger than many a man's waist, each calf the size of a Christmas ham. Here was the hidden source of his tremendous power and durability." ~ Jonathan Eig. Luckiest Man: The Life and Death of Lou Gehrig. New York: Simon & Schuster, 2005, 432 pp

Credit and Brian Bohnett.

The best line of his Farewell Speech

'...for the past two weeks you have been reading about a bad break I got. Yet today, I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of the earth.'

Years later another wonderful man and fantastic musician by the name of Michael Houser would use those words in an announcement to his fans and the world regarding his illness.

Michael Houser ~ January 6, 1962 - August 10, 2002

Whatever happens tonight I can always count on my Yankees conducting themselves with class and style and performing best under pressure.

This post dedicated to all Yankees team members past and present.

'At night all the faces light up as the players take the field' - Rebirtha ~ Widespread Panic

Let's play ball!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Thursday Eye Candy at figure8studio

and a Red Damask 60s Evening Swing Coat

Its all about color this month at figure8studio
Shop here for vintage dreams and more...

Shared via AddThis

Friday, August 21, 2009

If no one's in the kitchen, who's to see?

Seattle friends finally able to tear ourselves away from a myriad of responsibilities to see the much anticipated Julie & Julia, the movie about two foodies from different times Julia Child and the Texan living in Queens, NY, woman who with the help of her supportive and famished husband blogs through "Mastering the Art of French Cooking" over the course of a year.

We take time, sometimes once a month, sometimes more often-but never enough, to get together, smell the roses...or in this case, the beef bourguignon. I guarantee that by the time you leave the theater you will swear that you can.

I did not wear the string of pearls mom had given me years ago, its been too hot, it also turned into a balmy night. Barbara wore her cool cotton pedal pushers and was the envy of us.

Being a collector of Julia's books for a few years....

I wonder what became of our 'Mastering the Art of French Cooking'. What is even more mysterious is three of us are missing copies from our shelves.

Maybe they are keeping each other company.

The movie begins with Julie and husband moving from Queens NY to Brooklyn NY over a Pizza Parlor and Julia and husband to a fabulous Paris apartment.

My favorite car in the world is the 1955 Citroën DS, designed by Flaminio Bertoni it was named 'Most beautiful car of all time' by Classic & Sports Car magazine.

But I was smitten with the 1947 turquoise Buick Roadmaster station wagon used in the movie, I read Paul Child named it "Flash".

Upon further research on the web about the Buick I found a couple of discussions questioning the accuracy of the date and model.

Take for instance these convos on separate Auto Clubs.

"Mr. Mark Ricker, the film's production manager in an article written by Mr. Darrell Hartman. When Ricker was asked about the car, he had the following description to give: "A 1947 (sic-clearly it was a 1950) wooded blue Buick station wagon. They called it "The Blue Flash". We found it in France. It could have been Paul and Julia's original car, as far as we know."

"In the movie Julie and Julia, the Buick Estate Wagon is clearly a 1950 "four-holer" Roadmaster, but with a '49 style two-piece windshield. My Buick reference book doesn't mention such a configuration, and even my memory says the windshield was one piece. One web page I came across states, "Special still has the split windshield", which logically means that the Super and Roadmaster didn't."

There also seems to be some speculation the car was modified.

Back to the movie.

Streep was given Julia's height by the angles of the camera, tabletops lowered, shorter the market scenes. Also lifts were used. Not terribly attractive platform shoes or high heeled sneakers. eek.

I don't remember Julia ever wearing anything like them.

The shoes just did not seem quite right, but I'm probably just being nitpicky because, well, that's my job.

I remember Julia's enthusiastic personality watching her shows over my mother's shoulder, Julia sipping her wine as she cooked, as friend Sara pointed out, a pinch of this and that...not too worried about exact measures, sipping and cooking, chatting and laughing and disturbingly 'playing' with those plucked chickens. Julia had a way of holding them on the table in a way that it looked like they were dancing.

Ponder this story told by an esteemed acquaintance.

One evening you and your partner are cooking a special dinner for guests out of the pages of one of Julia's books, one of the sauces is not turning quite the way you expected. One of you look in the phone book and you cant believe that Julia is actually listed! After a couple of glasses of fine wine and a little courage you ring her for advice, probably doubting she will even pick up the phone, you expect an assistant or an answering machine, at best, urging you to leave a message for an appointment.

You are surprised and delighted, once again, when Julia herself answers and she does not even seem bothered or annoyed, she gladly volunteers to walk you through the process on the phone. After several tries when there seems to be no progress she asks about your impressive wine collection and suggests, if you mind, if she drops by!?


That evening she is your 'private chef', to the shock and surprise of your guests who are probably still pinching themselves after all these years, she joins the guests and you are able to enjoy her company till the wee hours of the morning.

I'm guessing Julie Powell would not be terribly pleased with this story as, according to what has been told, her goal was to attract Julia's attention. Sort of like when there is a fan at a rock show who is constantly yelling the musician's name, except Julie's method was subtle.

Isn't that life though?

Sometimes, when you least expect it, the stars align perfectly and magic happens. Unplanned.

Totally by chance.

And sometimes we simply live with our dreams.

Streep is one of our favorite actresses, we felt she played Julia to a T.

a Streep cooking tip from one of her interviews about the movie: 'You can remove the odor of garlic and onions from your hands by rubbing them with salt and cool water, It actually works better than hot water and soap.' she said.

The scene of Julie in Dean & De Luca made my heart skip, those tiny tins, treasures in any serious foodie's kitchen shelves, they found their way, to my delight (and wallet relief) in (gasp) discount gourmet places. Stores where a poor college student could afford a bit of luxury, or as Julia would have said 'Those without a cook'

The post war Paris scenes and fashions were a delight, another reason I was looking forward to seeing the movie, being in the vintage business and all.

I confess I cringed and even closed my eyes during most of the lobster scene.


But simply couldn't help cracking a smile during the one where they are sitting at the table and Julie is wearing a lobster pin. I am a lobster pin collector, my favorite found in a Woodstock NY gallery, red enamel with black marcasites.

My NYC kitchen happened to be painted turquoise, as I now realize so was Julia's, with many red lobsters on the walls, that's where the similarity ends. After a few years my collection morphed into all sorts of lobster items as friends gave me anything lobster. Ashtrays, key chains, magnets, pot holders, dishes, candle holders, bottle opener...even Lobster Man!

Here he is, happily riding on Godzilla's tail

A gift from a special friend

A "star aligning perfectly" moment in my life.

What fun it must have been to shop for this movie! The thrill of the hunt one hundred times over.

Some say more should have been made of the Julia vs Julie's blog snub but I 'got it' and I thought the movie did just fine without adding to the already rather awkward situation.

The movie had an excellent cast. The love depicted between Julia and Paul was heart warming.

After we exited the theater we chatted about it for some time, comparing our childhood and early adulthood Julia memories. Barb, being the excellent cook that she is, told us she was actually able to conquer the Aspic recipe without making soup and that her prize dish, prepared in Chicago from 'Mastering the Art' was the Veal Prince Orloff.

The movie has lit my fire to dig through my collection for fashions of the era.

A quickie

Vogue Trend Reports the recession was still Topic A in the front rows of fall shows, maybe that's why they also announced the 40's is 'in'

Vintage will always be a smart investment.

Follow this link to an article found in Country Living mag with interesting tidbits about Julia's kitchen and the movie.

I highly recommend this movie, even those unable to boil water will find it charming.
Bon appetit!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

I've got cling cling fsssss steam heat


Victorian Sci Fi. Anything that involves ingenuity and creativity without further waste. That which redefines time should be celebrated and deserves thoughtful consideration.

Jules Verne. H. G. Wells's The Time Machine. Art Nouveau. Whimsical fantasy. Victorian England. Romanced technology coming alive with a heartbeat and misapplied technology.

There are no hard and fast rules for Steampunk style, its why it is possible for British adventurers, sky pirates, neo Victorianas, mad scientists to exist under the same moniker.

Militaria, top hats, industrial Gothic leathers, corduroys or 'cords' as we call them in the States, velvets, browns, antique black or lightly touched with antique white laces, any color can be steampunked with perhaps the exception of neons. Gogles, monocles, skeleton keys.

Even Tiffany jumped on the bandwagon

Goes to show you how powerful this movement has become.

...Marching band jackets paired off with Victorian skirts, riding boots, docs (as in Martens)...

Oscillating antique fans lull me to dreamland...

My favorite aspect of the steampunk movement is how it combines technology with sustainability and DIY aesthetics

A Steam Powered Ipod Charger



In my Cañones cigar/jewelry box you'll find 80s earrings from recycled watch parts.

An example of colors used in steampunk. Designer Nikki Fizer

Alexander McQueen, one of the first designers that took steampunk to the fashion runways.
Even white can be made into steampunk.

In my store:


Victorian Style Dress

Victorian Inspired Dress

Other fine offerings:

Suzy Creamcheese Velvet Edwardian Style Suit - magsrags

Armani Vintage Jacket on etsy = sold.

Gloves on etsy - sold.

rogueretro hat on etsy

The possibilities are endless.

All you need is imagination.

hmm...all this talk about steampunk reminds me Im overdue for a visit to one of my favorite parks in the Emerald City; Gas Works Park


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