I think I must have said "Sorry, that's my bag not my hand" about six times at Vintage on the South Bank on Saturday. Great fun though. Bought a book from the Fashion and Textile Museum stall called Chic on a Shoestring. It gives instructions on how to make a fascinator out of feathers and a bit of felt, how to make a plain pair of shoes look like really expensive brogues with some glue and scissors and suede (VERY clever. I shall be sexing up several pairs I hope) and also how to make an 'emergency pillbox hat' out of an old CD, a cereal box and some fabric. Oh, and of course, glue!
I was with Andrea and her Czech friend, who did not understand vintage at all. "My grandmother still has this stuff. We don't like it."Andrea fell under the spell though. I think that one aspect of vintage opens up others. So if you came for the clothes, you'll probably grow to like the music. In Andrea's case, it's the other way round!
Andrea bought a gorgeous hairpiece from a fabulous milliner called Valerie Corona. She makes hats at Walter Wright, the oldest hat factory still run by its founding family, still actually making hats in Luton. "We stay alive because of events like this," said Philip Wright amidst all the Chaps, Chapettes, Swing-dancers and tea-and-scone drinkers. "If we'd catered to the high street we would have been forced to base our operations in the far east." So next time you hop onto one of those orange planes to Malaga or Geneva, remember that Luton was originally the town of hats.
Someone has posted footage of me singing an aeronautical (and in the second verse, prohibition) song from 1917. I like the fact it's in black and white. And that it's Albert Ball's Flying Aces! Woooooo! I adore singing with them! Nick Ball on spoons! Ellie Smith on Trombone! Dickie Evans on Sousaphone! Matt Redman on guitar! Simon Marsh on saxophone! Playing pop songs from the first world war.