If you are a fan of classic 80′s style then this is the suit for you! I could so see this on Cyndi Lauper! This suit has it all, shoulder pads, big sleeves, gilt buttons and it is in remarkable condition, if it was worn it was only a few times. Both skirt and jacket are fully lined and someone has taken the lining up on the skirt a little, it must have been hanging down.
This could be worn so many ways together or separately so you could make tons of use of this classic piece.

Label: ‘Echoes’ by Mariam O’Donovan

I am currently selling this suit on Etsy

This was such a dream of a dress in its day, real Great Gatsby stuff but unfortunately during its long life it has suffered for love and now has quite a bit of shattering on the shoulders and a patch in the front where the buckle was attached so now it is really a study piece. But what a study piece, the amazing beading is in perfect condition on the skirt and I have seen another website where someone turned a dress like this into a skirt which is certainly possible if someone had the skills. The diamanté buckle comes with the dress but is no longer attached, I guess the weight of it was shredding the delicate chiffon of the gown. Even if you only want to hang it somewhere for inspiration, this is truly an incredible dress and the ghosts of more than one long and elegant party night hang around its beaded hemline!

This dress sold on my etsy shop…


This wonderful day dress dates from the 1930′s and is in spectacular condition considering its age. The label is ‘junior guild’ though the dress is an adult British size 10.

The dress is a fabulous russet colour with a cream lace collar which has diamanté beading on it.
I found two places where the stitching has opened a little on the seam but they are easily mended.
This dress is really one of a kind and would make a lovely occasion dress for a party or communion.

I  am selling this dress right now on Etsy…

This beautiful dress is so Betty from Mad men! It is in that early 60′s style which was still very 1950′s new look. It could be worn with a net underskirt. The bodice is elasticated at the back and boned at the front to create a wonderful shape. It is an off the shoulder style with wired draped sleevelets and two thin straps.
The skirt has two hidden side pockets and falls to a graceful calf length. The material is 100% cotton.
This dress is magical and you would be the belle of any ball in this piece!
I am selling this item on etsy right now…
vintage-1960s-mad-men-style-floral-tea

I’m excited to be getting ready to launch the shop end of A Retro life. I have quite a small amount of stock to start off with and each and every piece will be difficult to part with but I am still excited to get started. In a couple of days I have a mannequin arriving so that I can start photographing the stock. As soon as I have some images they will be going up here on the blog, stay tuned!

I have to say that I have a tough time decided on an all time favourite era when it comes to style but I love the vampish image of the 1920′s flapper. I completly lost myself in ‘The great gatsby’ when I read it and have been equally immersed in ‘Tender is the night’ which I started recently.To celebrate this current obsession I thought I would share some handy links I have come across on flapper make up.

1920′s make up tips

One of my style heroes is the designer Peter O’Brien.Peter is an Irish designer who worked for years in Paris at Christian Dior, Givenchy and Chloe. In 2006 Peter brought out a collection for ‘high st’ store A-wear. I fell in love with it, the classic shapes, the colours and materials all seemed much more expensive than the actual price and I invested. I bought a tuxedo style, navy pinstripe trouser suit and a masculine style overcoat, all very Bette Davis or Katherine Hepburn. I still remember how excited I was at the check out, the beautiful way they were wrapped and the bags they were put in, the lovely postcards which were tied to the outside of the bags which I kept, everything.
(I have this dress in navy)
Since then every time Peter has brought out a collection for A wear I have bought something and they have pride of place in my wardrobe. Just last Sunday I wore a navy silk belted dress with a lace front and collar which moves so beautifully and is always admired, topped by that same coat that I bought back in 2006, now thats what I call an investment!
Peter if you’re out there, thank you!

The lovely Imelda May is going to play the ‘big top’ at the market in Limerick city for the second time this year, on the night before Christmas eve . I am really hoping I can go to this as I missed the last gig which was supposed to be a brilliant night.

This is something I give a lot of thought to. I definitely feel ten times better the days that I dress in something that has even a little retro flavour to it. Personally, I do not have a problem with wearing modern clothes that have a retro style to them, they are usually easier on the pocket than true vintage. Most days I wear a mix of retro and modern clothes and I like to wear something old even if it is only one of the lovely 1940′s to 1950′s brooches I inherited from my grandmothers.

I am always more self conscious though when it comes to make up. I love the full red lip, black flicked liner look but do not feel up to facing the school gate like this. Maybe I’m being a bit of a wimp but I was comforted to watch this interview with Dita last night. To hear that even she has days when she goes with just powder, mascara and a red lip and has gone for weeks without her liner! I was shocked but I love that she was being so honest and down to earth.

Another situation which occurs each week is what to wear when working out. I hike, do yoga and bellydancing, all of which are not well suited to stockings and heels! I enjoy my work outs but hate spending so much time in the dreaded lycra!

I would love to hear from anyone else who likes to dress retro, do you do it sometimes, on special occasions, or every day, is it head to toe hair style, make up, clothing and underpinings or a mix? Feel free to comment!

I’ve been doing a lot of research on the web as to what constitutes a good retro skin care regime. I am lucky enough to have a source for one of the best, my Dad used to work for the makers of good old Nivea creme which has about a million uses.

I always thought of it as a moisturiser which could be used on any part of the body or face but since doing my research I have found that loads of people actually use it as a cold cream as well. I even came across this video on you tube where a girl tested it against Pond’s cold cream for make up removal powers and their are plenty more videos like this one!

On vintage discussion boards many women say they use a cold creme regime nightly and use witch hazel as a toner one or two nights a week. I think this is the one I am going to try because my skin is quite oily so it would need the witch hazel. Both of these products are quite cheap so if you are interested why not try out a more low tech approach to skin care and see how your skin likes it!