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"I believe in pink. I believe that laughing is the best calorie burner. I believe in kissing...kissing a lot. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls."
Audrey Hepburn

Monday, December 19, 2011

Scott H. Biram and the Thankless City

So Scott H. Biram is returning to the Hitone Cafe on January 28th and I have a few words for Memphis Tennessee.

Why is it that so few of you 'blues fans' are showing up for his shows? He's performed at the Hitone several times and always the turn-out is slimmer than it should be. Scott H. Biram is a blues musician with deeply apparant influences of hillbilly, country, and punk-all of which make for an amazing live performance. His work is gritty and poignant and powerful-everything a blues show should be. So why are the hot spots on Beale, replete with their endless selection of tepid Delbert McClinton cover acts, receiving all the attention when such greatness is only a couple of miles down the road? You tell me. I'm going to be generous and assume that it's because people simply don't know he's there, or that they haven't taken the time to discover he or other great acts like him. For the readers of this post, both of those reasons should no longer exist.

I am not after an enormous number of viewers on Youtube. I will never be a candidate for 'King of the Web' and I will likely never ask you to vote me into a top spot of some kind. What I will do is ask that you pass this blog link around to anyone you think might be willing to promote this show or drive to attend it. I'll venture to say that even if you live a few hours from Memphis (or any of the other cities on his tour), you'll find it well worth your time to make the trip. I have always made it a point to expose my viewers to great music and I am so happy when you all tell me that you've discovered someone due to the music on my channel. I hope that if you haven't heard of Scott H. Biram before now, you are now a fan. And if you did know about him, that you're doing what you can to support him by purchasing his music and attending his shows.

I was born and raised in Memphis. I love the musical history in my home town and wish that the artists that create lovingly authentic music in the same genres that made the city famous could continue to rely on it for appreciation and acknowledgement.

Thanks for reading and sharing this post.


Friday, December 9, 2011

Viva Fit Club Update!~The 100 Workout

Hup, Two, Three, Four...!

So here we are only four months away from The VLV Rockabilly Weekender and the Viva Fit Club Facebook Group is SWINGIN'! 356 members and counting! So have you joined up yet? If not, please hop over because we need you! I can't believe how motivating all of you ladies have been for me. With all this time off ahead of us, it's good to have some folks around to keep us on track.

Anyway, I'm trying hard to keep up my water intake and my calories down. This part has been difficult for me since I tend to get busy and forget to eat...thus over-eating when the hunger hits. However, I've found that the 'My Fitness Pal' app for Iphone has really helped. It's the easiest thing I've found for keeping an accurate record of caloric intake and calories burned through exercise. It also allows you to follow the progress of your friends and help keep them motivated! So make sure to check that out as an option if you are the type of person who likes to keep a diary of such things.

Since the start of the Viva Fit Club, two posts in particular stood to me, donated by other members of the group and greatly appreciated. First, I was intrigued by the recipe for 'Sassy Water', which is supposed to help flatten the belly when you drink it along with a low calorie diet. Here is the recipe as it was posted. You're supposed to drink two liters (!) a day. I haven't started it yet but I have all the ingredients so I think I'm gonna mix up my first batch tonight.

Here's the recipe, for anyone else who's interested:

Sassy water
2 liters of water
1 tsp fresh Ginger
1 medium cucumber, sliced
1 med lemon, sliced
12 mint leaves
Mix together in pitcher and refrigerate over night. Drink 2 liters in a day.

Thanks Rachel Davis for this info!

The 2nd post that intrigued me was the idea for the workout linked above, called the '100's workout' ( I can't find the original post but thanks to whomever posted it!). I tried it for the first time today...and yes, it's a butt-kicker! I thought I'd let you know how I tailored it to my own fitness level and also how I made it through:

Disclaimer: I am not a fitness professional. This is an account of my own attempt at this work out and is not an indicator of what I feel YOU should do. Always consult a professional before beginning this or any other work out routine.

~ 100 Jumping Jacks-This was BY FAR the hardest part of the workout for me. I have always tried to do jumping jacks the right way (as taught by celebrity fitness guru Kendall Hogan) so I end in a squat and try never to bounce. The problems with that is that I was DEAD by 40 jumping jacks. So I took a quick breather and finished in the traditional 'grade school' way, staying lighter on the feet. I was able to finish very winded but alive.

~90 crunches-It's SUPER easy to zone out while you're doing crunches, especially when you do a bunch in a row like this. I mixed up this part by doing 20 full range crunches, 20 oblique twists, 20 bicycles, 20 full range crunches, and then finishing with 20 oblique twists.

~80 squats-That's A LOT of squats. And in other work outs I've done, you don't usually do a bunch of full-range squats in a row. So I mixed this part up by doing 10 slow squats, 10 short range squats, 10 plie squats (toes turned out) until I reached 80. It was'nt bad at all.

~70 leg raises-35 on each leg. Not too difficult.

~60 Jumping Jacks-Significantly easier than 100, let me tell you!

~50 Crunches-25 bicycles and 25 full range crunches

~40 squats-This time I did 20 full range squats and 20 lunges. I thought this workout needed lunges. haha

~30 Leg Lifts-15 each leg. Kind of a breeze, by this point.

~20 Jumping Jacks

~ Run for 10 minutes- Since I had the kids around, I couldnt take a run around the block or anything. I ran/jogged in place for 5 minutes and stretched for 5 minutes.
Anyway, this is a great workout and I think it would be excellent for those days you want to get a lot done quickly. I figure by the Fitness Calculator on My Fitness Pal, the calories burned are probably about 235 calories. I entered it as 30 minutes of 'Circuit Training'. Let me know if you feel it qualifies as another category instead?

Cheers, ladies!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Shame On Me!

No posts since the 18th of November? I have been far too busy and have sadly neglected my blog! I promise to try to post at least once a week from now on!

I hope all of you are well!

Friday, November 18, 2011

The Great Whirling Turban Dress Giveaway !!

That's right. Katherine, the designer extraordinaire of Whirling Turban is sponsoring a giveaway in celebration our affiliation and the wonderful new updates in store for her site!

ENTRY RULES: The prize will be a wing bust dress (similar to the one pictured above) made from any of our rayon prints that do not require a lining. Only one entry is allowed per person, you must be a new mailing list member, and you will be required to pay shipping.

1. Go to the Whirling Turban Website:

2. Choose your favorite Whirling Turban design. This is for feedback purposes. The prize is a classic wing bust dress with circle skirt.

3. Go to the Whirling Turban facebook page:
'Like' the page and post a photo or a link to your favorite Whirling Turban along with a note stating you'd like to be entered into the giveaway.

4. You will be privately invited to the mailing list and entered into the drawing. If you do not have a Facebook account, email us to be added to the mailing list:

5. Giveaway will close on or around Dec 15th.

This more involved entry process is designed to increase the mailing list and the flow of traffic to the Facebook page. It also benefits YOU in that those who are not seriously interested in winning will be weeded out and increase your odds!

Happy Hoping!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Photos that Change Everything...

What would Terry Malloy Say?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Sponsor Salute and Affiliate Affection!!

It's time again to pay homage to those brilliant businesses that keep the hair curling, here on Lisa Freemont Street!

I'm so excited by some of the new additions to the respective sites of my lovely sponsors, some in response to climate changes, and some due merely to the creativity of the parties involved.


Heartbreaker Fashion:
Just in time for this season's formal events, Heartbreaker has released a few elegant frocks to capture your 'fancy'. This gorgeous dress, the Antoinette, is a new design from the independent company. Modeled here by the lovely Ludella Hahn, this dress features a sophisticated fabric, peek-a-boo back, and gorgeous scalloped lace. It retails at a very reasonable 120.00

2. Queen of Heartz:
Don't fall into a slump as the cold weather approaches, by breaking out those faded jeans and yoga pants. Stay sleek and fashionable all year round with these casually stunning 'Nandy Pant's from Queen of Heartz! The Denim lends a relaxed mood to your style while still appearing professional, on the job. For your day off, pair them with a cozy sweater and some sensible shoes. Heads will turn for all the right reasons! The pants retail for 119.00

3. Kelly Grace-Artist

Etsy seller Kelly Grace has more than just retro styled and Pin Up art in her shop! For those of you looking for whimsical wall art for yourself or a little girl's room, please see her selection of beautiful Fairy pieces. New items are added often and Kelly's signature style will be an instant conversation piece.

Click on the links to the right to visit our Sponsors!


More and more often, I'm using Layrite products in my every day styles. The Grooming Spray and the original pomades are my favorites but my husband feels that the Super Hold is ideal for maintaining his mustache. He prefers it to any other mustache product he's found. To purchase Layrite products, simply visit my shop, linked beneath the heading of this blog.

In addition, don't forget that Whirling Turban is adding a shopping cart to their site very soon! For those of you who are on the mailing list, a special DEEPLY discounted sell will be happening as soon as the bugs are worked out of the new system. If you haven't joined the mailing list, get on the ball! Click here to be added to the mailing list and get that invitation when the big event happens. Whirling Turban's site currently has plenty of gorgeous items in the boutique as well, for those of you who just can't wait for the sale.

Happy Shopping!


Thursday, October 27, 2011

"The Viva Fit Club"-VLV Girls Unite!

Ihad an idea. Today I filmed a video called 'Barbarella Bodies', in which I lamented the fact that even though I have always been inspired by Jane Fonda's physique in the 1968 film, I have really done little in the way of trying to achieve my own version. While I've always been somewhat active and had a very clean lifestyle, I have never truly committed to any diet or exercise program over the years.

The time has come to develop a fitness routine in my otherwise very routined life!

Since Viva Las Vegas-The Rockabilly Weekender- is an event that many of us plan our year around, why not set April 5th as the 'finish line'? So those of you who are planning to attend the Las Vegas Weekender, join me and plan some fitness goals that you also would like to meet by the deadline! We can keep in touch via blog posts and facebook, where I plan to post weekly updates on my progress and touch base with you on yours. We can trade suggestons, recipes, work-out plans...we can even gripe about our inevitable failures along the way. I'll be starting a page for the Viva Fit Club and hope you'll all join me there. If you aren't attending Viva, you can absolutely still join the group to discuss your own Fitness goals and add your two cents! Request to join the group and I'll be happy to add you.

My own fitness goals are as follows:

1. Drink at least 8 glasses of water a day
2. Work Out 4 days a week, at least 30 minutes of focused activity
3. Eat balanced meals and decrease refined flours/sugars.
4. Treat self to 'sweets' and empty calories on weekends only
5. Visit photo inspirations often, to keep self on track.

Feel free to post your own goals here in the comments, on your own blogs (let me know if you post a reciprocating blog entry, please!), or in the Facebook group!

Shake it, Girls!


Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Whatcha Got Cookin? ~ Pavlova Recipe

For this installment of the 'Whatcha' Got Cookin?' series, I chose to do my own family favorite recipe for the Aussie traditional dessert, Pavlova.

I first learned this recipe on the food network but tailored it to my own tastes. Thought the traditional recipe calls for Red Wine or Raspberry vinegar in the meringue, I go with Balsamic. I find that this gives a nicer color and a slightly richer taste to the finished product. Try it both ways and see which you prefer!

4 egg whites at room temp.
1/8 tsp salt
1/8 tsp cream of tartar
1 cup sugar
1-1/2 tsp cornstarch
1 T. balsamic vinegar
1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1-1/4 c. heavy cream
2 T. light brown sugar, packed.
fruits of your choice.

Preheat oven to 350 degreen.

With a hand mixer (or with a whisk) whip the egg whites, cream of tartar, and salt in a clean, dry bowl until lightly foamy. Add granulated sugar, cornstarch, vinegar, and vanilla. Continue whipping until smooth, glossy, and stiff enough to not budge when the bowl is turned over. On a sheet of parchment paper (placed on a sheet pan), use a pencil to draw a 9 inch circle. Use a pie plate or a spring form pan bottom to trace. Turn paper over and fill the circle with your meringue, being careful to evenly spread the mixture to the edges of the circle. Bake in the center of the oven for 10 minutes, then reduce the heat to 300 degrees and back 45 minutes more, until the meringue has puffed a little and cracked. It should be about the color of cafe au lait. Turn off the oven, prop the oven door open, and let the Pavlova cool in the oven for at least 30 minutes, to room temperature.

Whip the cream and brown sugar together until stiff. Spoon into the pavlova (cooled) and top with sliced fruit.


Video Tutorial:

Thursday, September 22, 2011

In The Dressing Room- With Heartbreaker Fashion!

Ready to break some hearts? Heartbreaker Fashion has been helping gals do it for years!

One of my favorite vintage inspired lines out there, Heartbreaker Fashion is the brain child of mother/daughter team- Teresa and Amanda Becker. By May of 2008, the initially 'home based' business had grown out of its britches and was making its mark at an ever increasing office/warehouse space located in San Dimas, CA. The casual elegance of their travel-friendly styles will certainly keep them growing and adding even more darling designs to their already impressive selection.

Since I already had some Heartbreaker pieces in my collection, I was extra excited to get a message from Mandie Bee, informing me that she'd like to contribute to my Dressing Room Series. She sent me two dresses for your consideration, which I review thoroughly in the following video:

The first dress is their very popular style, The Sweetie Dress. This comfortably cut halter dress has been around since the inception of the business, and it's no wonder! The classic lines, cotton fabric, and easy flow of this dress makes it an absolutely ideal piece for ladies on the go. Pair it with ballet flats for a trip to the park, heels for a dinner date, and a sweet shoulder shrug for those cooler evenings. The dress retails for 90.00.

The 2nd dress they sent, The Monique Dress, is my favorite of the two. It has a classic late 50's/early 60's shape that is universally flattering. Also constructed of a quality cotton, the boat neck really frames the face and the simple sash at the waist creates a clean and complimentary silhouette. Another ideal dress for busy days around the office, it also dresses up nicely for a night out! Simply change your shoes and add a snazzy hair accessory and you're ready to go! Retails for 90.00

The 3rd dress I reviewed is one I've owned for about 3 years, the Astro Dress. Though my particular fabric is not currently available on the site, it's easy to see why the style continues to stick around. Reasonably priced at 88.00, this dress features a crossover neckline, patterned belt at the wide waistband, and additional touches that really help make it special. It works especially well for day, also being constructed of high quality cotton, and though the neckline is a little low for me (I usually wear a camisole underneath), continues to be a go-to dress in my wardrobe.

The last item I wanted to feature (but technical difficulties prevailed) was one of my favorite separates, my Trixie Top. Suffice it to say that I have never owned a knit item that has held up so well to washing, wearing, and *gulp* even pregnancy! It has not lost its shape or shrunken up at all, which is saying a lot. The neckline is decidedly 60's inspired, which I love, and the length is very flattering since it easily sits over the hips and doesn't ride up. Get thee some Trixie Tops now! (I actually think I've mentioned this before on my blog but it bears repeating.)

In addition to these lovely frocks, Heartbreaker has also broadened their options to include (quality) hair accessories, intimates, and swimwear!

It's easy to see why the company's motto is:
'Made in California with Love and No Regrets.'

So get to clickin' on that link at the right and once again, 'Happy Shopping, Ladies'!


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Kelly Osbourne says 'Come Up and See Me Sometime'....

She might have been slightly overdressed for the Emmys. Looks like an Oscar dress to me.

But... holy cow.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Sponsor Salute! -Queen of Heartz and Kelly Grace!

Time again to pay homage to those lovely companies that help keep Lisa Freemont Street on the 'map'! I'm proud to have as my sponsors those websites that put a little extra emphasis on beauty and form.

Kelly Grace-Artist

New to my site is artist Kelly Grace, who really has an amazing and unique style. Her pieces are for sale on Etsy and have a definite vintage feel. I really love the hues she works with, since they maintain a level of tradition but still feel modern in many ways.


Queen of Hearts

This month, I wanted to show another of my favorite dresses by Queen of Heartz. You all remember the company from my popular Dressing Room series, which I linked here on my blog last month. Since we are transitioning into fall, I thought the following dress was a lovely option for wearing alone or layering with a light cardigan or blazer. This 'Priscilla' brown floral dress maintains the colors of fall but the lightness of summer.

Pair it with some colorful shoes and a jacket or sweater in a complementary hue! The dress retails for 132.00.

Happy Shopping!


Monday, September 12, 2011

Monday Movie Review-'A Room With A View' (1986)

Directed by: James Ivory
Starring: Julian Sands, Helena Bonham Carter, Maggie Smith

A hopeless romantic since grade school, this movie is an inevitable choice as my favorite sweeping 'period romance'. I have adored it since I first saw it at age 15, and it is one film that has not diminished over the years. Now, I appreciate different things about it than I did as a teen, but it still appeals to the romantic sensibilities that I have never outgrown.

Initially set in 1908 Florence Italy, the story opens with young Lucy Honeychurch (Bonham-Carter) staring out of the window of the Pensione Bertolini-complaining of her view. She is touring the country with her elder cousin Charlotte (Maggie Smith), a prim and proper English spinster who is far more intent on preserving Lucy's purity than broadening her horizons. Lucy has a stifled passion for life that is only evident when she plays piano, but becomes more apparent when she meets George Emmerson, a young Englishmen who is also touring the country with his 'free thinking' father. Over the course of the few days in Florence, Lucy's life abruptly changes direction , much to the chagrin of her straight-laced cousin. The aftermath follows her home to England where she tries to get back into the groove of English society, even accepting the proposal of laughably sober Cecil Vyse (Daniel Day Lewis). But the passion of Italy soon re-enters her life and forces her to make some major decisions.

When it comes to love stories, it is hard to beat the sheer 'atmosphere' of this one. I swim in it. It simply envelopes you, from the opening credits and the gorgeous Kiri Te Kanawa arias placed strategically throughout the film, to the final satisfying moments. The lush musical score, the breathtaking Italian vistas, the perfect cast, the impeccable costumes...all these things combine to make a purely awesome cinematic achievement.

Though as a teen I was mostly drawn to the brooding hero and heroine of the story, as an adult I have come to realize how brilliant the supporting (Oscar nominated) players are, in the success of its execution. Maggie Smith is prude and proper perfection. Denholm Elliot (as George's father) is floundering and endearingly sympathetic. Daniel Day Lewis is a wonderfully memorable fop, Judy Dench a feisty authoress, and Simon Callow turns in possibly his best performance as the open minded clergyman 'Reverend Mr Beebe'. The dialogue (adapted from the book by E. M. Forster) is faultless, funny, and always entertaining. I think I've quoted it more than any other film ('Miss Teresa, you have flowers in your hair'...'We all have our little foibles and mine is the prompty settling of accounts.'). Merchant/Ivory has never had a more succesfully realized vision than this one, if you ask me (though critics prefer Howard's End and The Remains of the Day, it seems).

There are are moments of this movie that will go down in history as some of my all time favorites: The kiss in the barley field, the 'bathe' in the 'Sacred Lake' (hilariously honest nude scene), and the moment when Lucy finally confesses her 'muddled' feelings to George's father-among many others.

Because of that, the girl in me will never ever outgrow this one...and the woman in me will constantly find new things about it to love.

My rating: 10/10

Style Score: 10/10
Though the early 1900's are not my favorite time period for style, there is no doubt that the period costuming and hair styling are flawless. To so completely convey an era through modern film is a very special accomplishment.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Doing the 'Whirling Turban' Happy Dance!

So perhaps you've heard the rumors...the ones that I spread myself. Lisa Freemont Street is joining forces with her very favorite online company for vintage reproduction clothing...Whirling Turban! See that pretty little link over there in the right hand column under the word 'Affiliates'?

Let me tell you a little about this company. I posted a blog entry to Whirling Turban a while back, describing my experience with my custom dress as I stepped along through the process. When I received my dress, I posted the following video, showcasing some of the details and featuring a simple hairstyle that I felt complemented it.

Katherine Robinson is the owner of Whirling Turban and she puts her personal touch on every dress that leaves the Bali based shop. The shop has only about a dozen expert employees and operates largely by natural light...a small touch that I felt was really special. You must see the video on their home page to see how lovely the work environment seems to be.

Katherine was a seamstress in Hollywood and KNOWS how to craft an expertly fitted dress from a distance. She offers these services at only a fraction of the price that most stateside companies could afford, and therefore your experience with Whirling Turban may end up being the closest thing to movie-star attention that you'll ever have. The fabrics are all chosen deliberately, with special attention to quality and beauty.

While custom dresses have always been the main focus of the company, Katherine knows that many ladies can't afford the extra touches so she is broadening her business and opening up a lot more options for those of you searching for 'ready to wear' items in the Whirling Turban Boutique. Items here are undergoing a 'mark down' that will make these things more affordable for the average gal...and the custom stuff? Well it's getting a bit of a revamp as well.

From now on, the majority of Katherine's custom skills (excluding small alterations to boutique items) will go into her fabulously gorgeous wedding dresses! The dresses
are droolingly perfect...unlike anything you will ever see a traditional bride on 'Say Yes to the Dress' try on. These gowns are couture one-of-a-kind masterpieces that any bride can be proud to wear. Not only that, but Whirling Turban has also opened up an affordable option for Bridesmaid dresses so that your bridesmaids can wear complimentary dresses to yours without having to shell out the big bucks! This option features a wing bust, full skirt, and can be dyed to match any color you like! Plus, it starts at only 199.00 including shipping!

So where do I come in? Well, as a blog affiliate, if you click on the tab to the right and buy a dress, I'll get a commission. However, that wasn't enough for me-a long time fan of the company! So I am terming my association with Whirling Turban as 'Active Affiliate'. This means that I not only get the standard blog commission but I am assisting in thei inquiry process as well! I will be assisting brides through custom designing their dresses (my favorite part!) and helping buyers decide which boutique options may work best for their body type. Katherine is walking me through all of the particulars because, as most of you know, I do NOT sew. But I'm hoping to lend my styling sensibilities to this collaboration and help make Whirling Turban THE place to go for custom wedding and special event dresses!

I'm so excited, as you can tell. However, I want to assure all of you that this does mean that I am going to bombard you with sales pitches on Youtube or that I am abandoning my new 'Dressing Room' series in favor of a slew of Whirling Turban videos. Katherine is a specialist, which means she focuses her attention on authentic reproduction 1940's and 50's styles with specific pattern details. There are things she doesn't carry that other companies do; and I intend to continue to alert you to other businesses that offer retro inspired clothing. Lisa Freemont Street on Youtube will continue to provide you with free beauty tutorials and product reviews.

But I hope all of you will share my positivity in this new step forward and keep Whirling Turban in mind for your next vintage dress!


Thursday, August 25, 2011

In the Dressing Room- 'Queen of Heartz'

This installment of 'The Dressing Room Series' is dedicated to Queen of Heartz, an LA based clothing line created in 2001 by vintage enthusiast Letty Tennant. Queen of Heartz sets themselves apart through use of 'fine fabrics, and perfection of construction-both important to obtain a true vintage look'.

In browsing through the easy-to-navigate website, I noticed that the majority of the dresses and separates are in the style of the 1940's and 1950's, with a few 1930's touches thrown into the mix. The company also offers a lovely selection of wedding dresses and swimwear. Shipping is available worldwide, though what you pay will be dependent on order total and location.

Pricing is standard of high quality vintage inspired clothing, dresses ranging from 80.00 to 200.00, depending on style and availability. Prices are indicative of quality and to this I can personally attest. All of the dresses I received were extraordinarily well made, constructed of high grade fabrics.

Dress #1, The 'Ruca', is a a 40's style cocktail dress featuring a wide surplice neckline and cris-cross panels at the hips. There is also a lovely sequin applique at the shoulder that accentuates the neckline and the stretch satin fabric. The fit is conservative but body-conscious. I did not notice that there was a significant amount of stretch in the material, however, so make sure to check the measurements before ordering. I feel that the fit is very flattering, especially since the panels at the hips draw attention to the waistline. On the model, the panels do lay much flatter than they do on my own body type, therefore this could be a drawback for someone who is more conscious of their mid-section. It retails for 120.00 and is available in several shades.

Dress #2 is the Rosa, a sexier 'wiggle-style' dress constructed of stretch satin as well, and available in a variety of colors. The one I received was a lovely shade of ivory that would be very flattering to deeper skin tones. It is cut with a much slimmer fit than the Ruca, but features a gorgeous gathered bust and rosette detail that will enhance a smaller chest area.
The pockets at the waist are an interesting architectural detail but again, may draw attention to the waistline in a way that may be off-putting to some. While the fit is not as conservative as The Ruca, it is undeniably a beautiful dress, retailing at 144.00.

Dress # 3, 'The Holiday', is a great option for dancing dolls. It features a full swing skirt with no skimping on the fabric and a lovely rosette detail at the slightly dropped waistline. The stretch cotton sateen is a comfortable choice, providing a breathability that will withstand even extreme climates. The neckline is a modest draped halter style with a winged accent at the bust. I found that the sizing was again accurate, although the bust does seem to press down a little and could cause some concern to those who aren't blessed in that department. The dropped waist also causes a few fit issues for me since I am by nature short-waisted...but this is something that could easily be altered and would be worthwhile for such a timeless piece. The dress definitely would benefit through use of a crinoline, to further accentuate the waist. It retails for a sale price of 120.00, currently.

Final Thoughts:
Queen of Heartz is an excellent option for vintage inspired fashion that isn't run-of-the-mill. The garments are very well crafted and well planned, providing a great wardrobe option for vintage enthusiasts and classic style alike. So click on that purty little link on the right, in my Sponsor column, and shop around the site for a while!


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Movie Review: All About Eve (1950)

Starring: Bette Davis, Ann Baxter, George Sanders
Directed By: Joseph L. Mankiewicz

Another of my top ten favorite films, 'All About Eve' is the quintessential 'show business' film. If you are a fan of stage or screen, this timeless look into the lives of the 'players' will always prove to be a great piece of entertainment.

Synopsis: Margo Channing (Bette Davis)is a renowned stage actress, revered for her great commitment to her craft. One evening, Margo is introduced to Eve- a starry eyed fan of her work who has seen every performance of her current play, 'Aged in Wood'. Eve's charming personality and infatuation with the stage make her a beloved addition to Margo's circle of friends...for a time. Acid-tongued columnist Addison DeWitt soon sees something in Eve that the others do not...determination and driving ambition. By the time the people to whom Eve has attached herself become aware of her goals, the damage has been done.

The Film: One of the most successful things about this film is Mankiewicz's 'stage-like' direction. It retains the appeal of a live production while still giving us gorgeous black and white cinematography and stunning camera-work. The subtle nuances of the character development are increasingly apparent as the film progresses, inviting us into Eve's world and Margo's confusion. The dialogue is unequaled, possibly the best ever written. It is both witty and profound; candid and coy. Never once does the story lag or the execution of it disappoint.

The Players: I make no secret of the fact that I feel this is the 'dream cast'. It is an absolutely perfect juxtaposition of attitudes and skills that cannot possibly be conveyed by simple delivery of the brilliant lines. Standout is of course Davis...and this is her crowning achievement, in my opinion. Her Margo is a flawed but powerful heroine, a lady you'd feel honored to know-but in whose presence you'd feel inadequate. Her troubled heart is evident throughout the film, and yet her tough exterior makes her seem even more human.

Playing a very slim 'second-fiddle' to Davis' scenery chewing broad is George Sanders as Addison DeWitt- the cynical theater critic whose admiration of Margo's talent is in conflict with his obvious attraction to Eve. In the latter, he sees a feminine counterpart...someone who shares his passion and tenacity. From the opening narration, his honeyed voice inevitably pulls you into the drama at hand.

Supporting parts are also immaculately played, from Celeste Holm's loyal wife and friend to Gary Merrill as Margo's masculine support team and Thelma Ritter as her shrewdly perceptive maid. Marilyn Monroe also makes a memorable big screen debut as Miss Caswell, a flighty model who is trying to break into acting- using Addison as her means to an end.

Final Thoughts: There are not many dialogue driven films that can retain my interest after multiple viewings, like this one. It is by far the most successful film of its kind and is a 'must see' for anyone who is interested in theater and the lives of those who have chosen the stage as their career.

My rating: 10/10

Style Score: 9/10

Make sure to check out the 'extras' during the party and restaurant scenes for great glimpses of early 50's styling. Monroe has also never looked lovelier. Her 'audition' costume and styling is my favorite of the film.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Motions Foaming Wrap Lotion-Product Review

In an ardent desire to prevent damage to my hair, I have significantly cut down on the amount of heat I use in styling. Whenever I can, I let my hair dry naturally before setting it, and for curls-I tend to opt for a 'wet set' over a heated one. Therefore, a good setting lotion is a must.

You who have been following my Youtube channel for a while, may remember my Lottabody Setting Lotion Review that I did around the time of my Starlet Series.

The one problem I had with Lottabody was that it tended to leave my hair sort of 'crunchy' unless I diluted the heck out of it. Then the staying power seemed somewhat compromised. A gal from Australia (sorry, I forget her name) alerted me to Motions on the Fedora Lounge and I am forever indebted. It's a wonderful product!

'Motions Foaming Wrap Lotion' is a mousse-type setting lotion for wet sets that can be found in the Ethnic sections of most drugstores, here in the States. It has a clean, non-descript scent. When I'm doing a dry, heated set I tend to use my Layrite Grooming Spray to prep my hair before drying and curling it. When I am utilizing a wet set, I usually prep my hair with setting lotion before allowing it to air dry or blowing it dry. THEN I use plain water to re-moisten the hair before I pin curl or roll. If I'm going for a curlier 'do', then I will prep the hair w/ Motions first, and then roll straight from damp hair. Try both ways and see which suits you best!

The result for me is hair soft to the touch that holds curl nearly twice as long.


Video Review:

Saturday, July 30, 2011

In the Dressing Room-Le Bomb Shop

The first company I'm featuring in my Dressing Room series on Youtube is Le Bomb Shop, an Ebay based company specializing in retro inspired dresses and separates.

Le Bomb Shop offers clothing that ranges in inspiration from the 40's to the 80's, at very decent prices. Most items are between 30.00 and 60.00, with some separates coming in at as little as 10.00!

I feel that this store is ideal for those of us who love to dress in vintage inspired clothing but also can't afford the prices of some of the other reproduction clothing companies. There are some amazing options for every day dresses, as well as frocks for special occasions. My friend Kalia used Le Bomb Shop to purchase her bridesmaid dresses!

While I can't vouch for the quality of every garment pictured, the ones I received recently are of decent construction. Fabrics are indicative of price, usually of a cotton blend and containing some stretch. If stretch is present in the item, it will be noted on the description page.

One of the main 'plus' points of this company is the attention to styling options and the multiple photos of each dress, from every angle. Keep in mind that the dress form is small however, and the dress will likely not look exactly the same on your frame unless you are a tiny thing. I have had a few issues with fit, in the past, but the measurements of the two items reviewed seemed to be accurate. So make sure to take your measurements and purchase accordingly, to insure proper fit.

Visit Le Bomb Shop...and make sure to let them know you heard about them here!


Friday, July 22, 2011

'Grandma Miller's Rolls'-Viewer Contributed Family Recipe!

I am so pleased to be trying my hand at 'viewer contributed' family recipes on my Youtube Channel! The recipe for this week's tutorial was offered by viewer Karen, who claims he Grandma Miller's homemade rolls were next to none! Make sure to check out the video for the full process (and some great tunes by Marti Brom), but here is the written version of the recipe.


Grandma's Rolls

2 eggs well beaten
1/3 c. powdered milk
4 tsp yeast dissolved in 3/4 c warm water with 1 tsp sugar
1 1/2 c water
2 T sugar
1 tsp salt
about 4 3/4c. flour

Mix together all ingredients with enough flour to make a soft batter that can be rolled out on a floured surface. Roll to 1/2 inch thick and spread dough with thin layer of shortening. Fold again and roll, then spread with margarine. Fold one last time and roll, then cut into circles (Grandma used a glass for a cutter). Dip half of dough circle in melted margarine, fold in half, pinching edges, and lay close to one another in baking pan. Let rise for about 2 hours. Bake at 425 degrees for 10 minutes

Friday, July 15, 2011

'Fortune Cookie Soaps' Giveaway!

As promised in my recent product review, I'm hosting a giveaway for Fortune Cookie Soaps, absolutely the 'Cat's Meow' in whimsical, lusciously scented bath products.

The prize will be four 25.00 Gift Certificates! Yay!

Here are the rules, as laid out by the company:
1. Entry begins at 11pm tonight and ends at 11pm on the 29th of July.

2. You must follow Fortune Cookie Soaps on Twitter at 'fortunefreak'.

3. 'Like' the Facebook Fan Page

4. Tell them what your favorite Fortune Cookie Products is!

5. Make sure to provide a valid email address with your entry so that you can be easily reached.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

A Family of Fashion Illustrators

A couple of weeks ago, I was visiting my mother and came across these fabulous prints which I felt you all might enjoy.

My grandfather and mother were both fashion illustrators. My grandfather, Frank Nichols, became quite well known for his art and eventually opened up an art school, here in Tennessee. His house always smelled like coffee and turpentine. Visiting, as a child, I was fascinated by his studio. There was a life sized mannequin in the sudio, which always frightened me at night, and various paintings at different stages of completion. His favorite mediums were oil (which he used on most of his landscapes and portraits) or pen and ink. Though his oil paintings are still some of my most prized possessions (and which provide the backgrounds for many of my finished styling photos), I was always most drawn to those long, lean black and gray ladies of his fashion illustrations.

He specialized in textures-furs, lame', leather. I was always astonished how sleek and perfected his tiny brush could make these things appear.

My mother inherited much of his talent and was trained to be a fashion illustrator herself. She was gorgeous, simply built for a career in fashion. Starting out as a model, her runway experience helped her to develop an eye for design and accessorizing. She began to draw for Levy's department store in Memphis in the mid 1960's.

When I was a kid, I naturally had the very best in paper dolls.
I would just have to tell mom that I wanted 'that dress' for my paper dolls and she'd bang it out in mere minutes. When I watched 'The Ten Commandments', she drew me a 12 inch Egyptian doll that had an array of fascinating 'Hollywood' inspired costumes and a stunning black bobbed haircut. Somewhere along the way, I became obsessed with 'Gigi' and my talented mother was quick to create a doll that was the height of Minneli-esque, Lautrec-inspired french fashion.

Anyway, I thought I'd share a little of her artwork with you here. I plan to frame some of it...I love the fact that you can still see her penciled in notes and those of the editor. Shoes were her specialty. In these days, where everything is done with computers, we sometimes forget the effort that was put into making clothing appealing to the average shopper. Pen and ink did that best, if you ask me.

Thanks for visiting,