So, I said pictures, right? Let's start with the outfit I wore out clubbing on Friday. I picked up the dress in London at an amazing vintage store near Waterloo station called Radio Days (way cheaper than anything you'll see around Portobello Market). I went there on my birthday, then again the next time I was in England, and found this dress, that fits like a glove.
It's from the 1950s, and has a full circle skirt, as well as the gorgeous draped detailing at the bodice. Even better, it still had its own belt, and the belt was in good condition - somewhat of a rarity these days. I got it for 38 pounds, which is expensive for me, but cheap compared to the prices I saw elsewhere in London. Apart from a little iron damage (shiny spots) and a small blemish on the left shoulder, it's in perfect condition.
The skirt needed a proper petticoat; I bought one and added some cute detailing to it:
The petticoat has another petticoat underneath it - that's the longer bit you see. The net petticoat was somewhat see-through. I added pink ribbon to the lines, and then hot-glued pink ribbon flowers with rhinestone centers to the bottom two layers. I love pretty clothes, and I really love spinning and doing twirls in a full skirt. *sigh*
Like I said this morning, dancing this Friday too - I rarely get the chance to dance twice in a month, and I'm looking forward to it. Hopefully a band won't be playing (nothing against the bands, but I want to dance).
This is the vinatge stuff I was talking about earlier today:
The coat. I love the coat - it's a working coat. The inside is carefully quilted, and there's a gorgeously made watch pocket on the inside. The inside collar has a marking (in felt pen, grrr) that says "Costume Shop, Westminster, MD".
The teeny wool coat. The back of the collar is velvet.
One of the black tops I got - this one has the most gorgeous button detailing on the sleeves and front (it fastens in the back). The sleeves have a series of tucks down the length, and each tuck is decorated with a button. The net inset front is beaded with jet beads, and the neck had some sort of white edging once, but it has badly deteriorated. I think I paid $10 for this.
The other black top - possibly once part of a full dress - that is totally weird in feeling, especially the lace inset at the neck (which is original, as the neck stays and the stitching shows), and feels very modern, even though it's not (though I'm not sure when exactly it is from - somewhere in the 1890-1914 timeframe, I think). I love the bead detailing, and though it's damaged, it was a total bargain at $5. Note the bead buttons in the second picture - the front is off-set.
This is a rather odd little thing (I paid $5 for it) that could be a capelet, or could be a skirt "apron". The band is a bit too large to be a collar. What I love is the braid decoration, which is accented with steel beads.
A gorgeous, gorgeous capelet in wool with a double-shot silk twill (!) lining that is badly deteriorated in places, but still worth way more than the $2 I paid for it. The lining is so gorgeous; I wish they still made fabric like this. *sigh* Second picture shows the variations in the lining (as well as some of the damage; predictably, it is worse at the neck).
And the binoculars I got:
So pretty. And they came with the original case.
Finally, on to the creche - I found some lovely lead figures this year, and I used them to add a couple of vignettes to the whole thing:
This is the whole thing - the more secular (for certain values of secular) bits are on the sideboard behind the main creche - and the creche is now large enough that it takes up the whole table. I need to get a better stable - the one I have is more of a stable sideout. The inn, is, of course, full, and this is the reason why:
(Sorry about the slight blur; low light.) But if you look, you can see the rich woman (let's say she's Paris Hilton) and her pink poodle. She is staying in the best suite, and has rented out all the rooms so she and her entourage can party. Note the porter; I love the porter.
(Everyone in her entourage except the porter is going to Hell.)
The little sign on the door says "no room, try stable". And yes, that's a Beefeater by the door. And in the second picture, that's my soldiers representing the Christmas Truce. That event is terribly important to me since it speaks of the good in humanity and the power of Christmas. Of course they deserve a place in the creche.
My new representation this year is the preacher teaching Creationism to the little animals who have stopped making their way to the creche, and are never going to see the baby Jesus if they are distracted by the nonsense the preacher is teaching them. Note the dinosaur looking over his shoulder; I am nothing if not subtle.
Like a brick.
(Yes, I'm offending vast swathes of people. Hit the back button. If it kills you to know that people like me exist at all, too bad. We happen to think the baby Jesus and His Father are perfectly capable of creating something like evolution, and would laugh at the idea of dinosaurs and people living together. My God is way bigger and more bad-ass than the Creationists give him credit for.)
Finally, I have this:
The little turtle is at the farthest point of the table from the creche, but he is patiently working his way towards the stable. He will get a little closer each day, and on Christmas Day (or slightly before, since I will be in North Carolina on the day itself), he will be right by the baby Jesus, along with the rabbits:
(The rabbits are getting in early, since they want to corner the market on Easter.) The little turtle will be right in front, since patience and quiet determination are both qualities valued by J.C. (Bob says he should arrive on Epiphany, after everyone has left, but he's mean, and is going to Hell, too).
As am I. That should make the Creationists happy. Too bad I'll have to put up with them there as well. *evil*