Sunday, June 26, 2011

Sunday Best: Pink and Blue

 After noticing this blog didn't have nearly enough style posts, I'm kicking off the new Sunday Best segment! I'll make a better effort to post at least one of my favorite outfits from each week and here's this weeks to get us started!

Outfit Rundown!
Dress: A lace covered cocktail dress I finished this week (started out as a personal project, but  it'll be going into the shop soon!)
Accessories: My blue Society pearl set with the white bracelet used as a necklace extender, coordinated with a vintage 60's pearl and crystal brooch.
Shoes: Forever 21, I love these shoes but honestly can hardly walk in them for some reason. I ordered some replacement blue pumps which I'll be sticking the crystal bows to in the future for better walking! (and higher heels :P)
Hair: New lavender dye job!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Quaintrelle Jello Shots (no booze)

Building on the success of the last "Jello" experiment, I finally went and made my "Quaintrelle jello shots" over the weekend. The flavor? Milk tea of course! To cement the "shot" aspect this time around I made them as individual tiny servings set up in little vintage demitasse!

So if you have a few tiny cups you've been wondering what to do with, this recipe is for you!!

Mini Set Teas (makes about 5 mini teas or 2 regular sized ones)


1 cup boiling water
3 Black tea bags
3Tbs Sweetened condensed milk
1 Envelope Knox Gelatin


  • Brew your 3 tea bags for approx 5 min (or to flavor) in 1 cup of boiling water (ideally in a glass measuring jug or easy pourable vessel) .
  • Mix in the 3Tbs of condensed milk into the brewed tea.
  • Sprinkle gelatin over 4tbs water in a small sauce pan and leave for about 5min
  • Heat water in larger saucepan to make a water bath, float the smaller pan of gelatin in the water bath and heat gently till gelatin is fully dissolved. Shake occasionally but do not stir to avoid bubbles.
  • Once gelatin is dissolved add to you milky tea mixture and stir gently to combine.
  • Pour mixture into each demitasse
  • Chill for 3 hours to set.
These make a wonderful little amuse-bouche  for a more satisfying dessert I recommend setting the Jello in a large teacup with a wide bowl and topping with a rich vanilla Ice-cream or frozen custard. These first "shots" were made with good old regular black tea, but other wonderful flavors included rooibos, earl grey and chai.

I hope you'll give it a shot at your next tea party!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Pearly Queen

If there's one fashion thing people universally agree on, it's that you can't live without a good set of pearls!

When I'm putting together my outfit for the day one of the things I most frequently reach for is one of my favorite strands of simulated pearls! I love them because their beautiful subtle luster looks classy for day or evening wear, and they really do go with everything!

I do have a dream of one day owning a beautiful set of real pearls, but that's one of those dreams I have for the future (if I ever strike it rich someday), for right now though I'm all about nice simulated pearls (even Jackie Kennedy wore faux pearls so there's no shame in being a part of that fashion club!)

Things I like to see in my pearls are a hand knotted cord (It's super secure, and adds a touch of authenticity to the pearls as that's how the real deal are strung) and interesting clasp (the best way to add some extra glitz to the simplicity of pears!) and color.

Color me  retro
Classic white pearls are a great and timeless choice because they literally go with everything a girl might own, ball gowns, jeans, sundresses, the works! But I also love fun colors. In the 50's and 60's especially, colorful pearls were all the rage. With names like Creme de Menthe green, manufacturers went crazy for colors to fit with the vibrant styles of the time. A strong mid century trend for rainbow colored pearls mean colorful pearls are a super way to make timeless pearls look that little bit more obviously retro cool. 

Get the look!
Inspired by vintage pearl jewelry we've recently added a collection of classic pearls in elegant white and retro colors to the shop as a perfect finish to any and all of our outfits! Hand knotted on silk cords to match our Swarovski crystal pearls, and joined together with beautiful crystal clasps in the exact style of our favorite vintage gems.

The great thing about buying this old style new is that you can get the full matching set in tip top condition (so no devastating cord breaks) and with no discrepancy in color or luster between the pieces the way a married set of vintage jewelry has. We even package all our vintage style jewelry in lovely retro velour boxes so it really is just like back in the day!

***Visit the new collection of pearl jewelry just added to the shop today to pick up your own set and get the look today!***

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Hello Kitty Lynne!

I'm sure a few eagle eyed readers have noticed a new face appearing in parts of the shop lately and even in the side bar of this very blog! Today I'd like to give a warm introduction to the latest member of the Vivcore team, lovely pin up model Kitty Lynne!

I always love hearing about why different people fall in love with vintage style so I asked her to do a little interview for the blog!...

Vivcore: What made you fall in love with Vintage Fashion?

Kitty Lynne
: I love vintage beauty. It is timeless. There is an elegance and class that you just don’t see any more in today’s fashions. I have considered vintage fashion to be the epitome of loveliness for as long as I can remember but I think what made me truly fall in love with it was looking at old pictures of my Grandma from the 1950s. She was just so beautiful. Her hair, make-up and dresses were always just so and she always had the prettiest, most genuine smile on her face. I absolutely adore the fact that women back then actually made an effort when getting ready in the morning. No going to the store in PJ’s and a pony tail! Another thing that really made me appreciate vintage fashion was discovering the pin-up art of Vargas and the like. The mix of sexiness and innocence of the women really intrigued me. It was at that moment that my dream to be a pin-up model was born. Although it took MANY years for that dream to manifest itself, I now have the opportunity to pursue it and that is amazing!

Vivcore: Do you have any Vintage Style Icons that you love?

Kitty Lynne
While it may seem like a “you know she was going to say that” answer, I’d have to say that my all time, most loved vintage style icon would have to be Audrey Hepburn. Not only for the clothes she wore but for her unblemished character. All her life she gave her time and resources selflessly to charities and causes she deemed of utmost importance. When it came to her sense of style, I don’t believe she was ever seen looking anything less than amazing. Even in a pair of slacks and a button down shirt, she always brought her “A” game.

Vivcore: What do you think is the most fun thing about Retro Fashion?

Kitty Lynne: I could talk you ear off on this one but I’ll try to keep it short. LOL. I guess if I had to pick one thing that is the most fun about retro fashion it would be, simply put, getting all dressed up. It’s such an awesome feeling when you actually take your time to do your hair and make-up and then put on a gorgeous vintage dress and heels (complete with all the foundation clothing of course)! You just feel so put together.

Vivcore: Anything else for the readers?

Kitty Lynne: Yes, I’d like to add that your readers can follow me on Twitter @Vivcore_Girl or on Facebook at Vivcore Girl ~Ashley Ann~ for additional updates on Vivcore’s awesomeness and to see pics of yours truly modeling Vivcore’s rockin’ designs. I’m also in the process of creating a website/blog devoted to Pin-Up Fashion. The website will be Finally, I’d like to add that it is truly and pleasure and an honor to work with Vivien and to call her friend. She and her designs are amazing.

~Kitty Lynne~

I hope you'll give her a warm welcome to the team and keep a look out for her on the sites!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Quaintrelle Jelly and Ice Cream

The road to reworking great retro desserts starts with a single step! As much as I L.O.V.E Love Jello, I was looking for greater variety and flavor in my wobbly desserts. Today I did a brief experiment to see if I could use some of the syrups from my soda bar to create some original flavor gelatin desserts...

Originally I was going to try some flashy little bite sized treats, but it looked so good in my new Fishs Eddy bowl that I decided getting it to set was a feat in itself, and I went with the English childhood classic, Jelly & Ice Cream! (that's Jello and ice cream to my American chums). Every one here thinks it's weird but I swear it's great!

Lychee and Elderflower Jelly and Ice Cream

  • 1/4 cup Lychee syrup
  • 1/4 cup Elderflower syrup
  • 1/2cup Water
  • 1 Envelope Knox plain gelatin
  • Sprinkle gelatin over 4tbs water in a small sauce pan and leave for about 5min
  • Heat water in larger saucepan to make a water bath, float the smaller pan of gelatin in the water bath and heat gently till gelatin is fully dissolved. Shake occasionally but do not stir to avoid bubbles.
  • Once gelatin is dissolved mix in your syrups along with 1/2 a cup of water and stir gently to combine.
  • Pour mixture into a bowl or mold.
  • Serve along with a scoop of your favorite ice-cream (or in this case frozen custard )
  • Feel like a fancy kid.
I'm still refining everything but this should hopefully be tasty step in the right direction to a few real corkers of desserts!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Seersucker Social 2011

Saturday was the big Seersucker Social here in DC, the Summer bike ride and lawn party held by the magnificent Dandies and Quaintrelles up at the Hillwood estate museum. I'm confess to wimping out of the bike ride, but had a smashing time with my fella at the garden party walking round all the gardens, admiring the Post family house and art collections as well as the areas best dressed in their best dresses!

The parts stretched across several of the gardens, with lawn badminton, croquet for anyone feeling "sporty", cocktails and even a wet plate photographer.

The house I had wanted to visit for a long time, so many wonderful 18th century portraits, the opulent decor is a dream, and the tea cups, oh my gosh the tea cups!  I had read up a little on the collection and was still amazed by how much was on display. All the people who worked at the museum were wonderful too, and let me bore them about my necklace :)

Yesterday really was the best day ever to go see the estate, with all the people dresses to the nines, the activities and the music it felt rather like stepping into a Hemingway novel. You could almost believe the house was still lived in and that you were one of the fabulous socialites at one of Mrs Post's gatherings.

Dandy Wellington and the made to fit band MCed and played through out the event. They are a great outfit and worth checking out!

The weather was perfect for this time of year, a mere 82°F,  which was just comfortable enough for all the crinolines I had managed to pull on under my dress! The people there were all so wonderful and friendly it was great meeting so many new people at the event. The afternoon seemed to just fly by, and it was hard to believe we'd been there as long as we had (till I took off the 5" heels I'd been wearing all day, my feet told the story only too well!)

Visit the Dandies and Quaintrelles website to find out more about future events and sign up 

I'm super excited already for the next Tweed ride and part come Autumn, so looking forward to doing it all over again!

There were some fantastic photographers out there, check out the Flickr pool for some great shots of the ride and the lawn party

Friday, June 3, 2011

Pretty Things

One thing the cocktail drinker has far and away above the soda drinker is the accoutrements. The world just puts more thought into interesting ways to drink liquor than it does a good spot of fruity fizz.

I've been building up a collection slowly of more and more interesting items for our home soda bar, and thanks to my husband (with help from a good friend) I was recently introduced a mecca of retro glass wear that is perfect for the home soda fountain enthusiast, Fishs Eddy! Everything from tumblers and press-glass pitchers to super awesome printed paper straws.

Our 2nd package just arrived from them today (1st package was these wonderful lidded glass bowls for my birthday, good bye boring Tupperware from picnics!). We are now the proud owners of a fountain worthy straw holder, and a selection of pretty paper suckers to sip our latest soda recipes through

I'd been looking out for some more attractive straws to drop in our sodas for a while, and the local grocery store just doesn't take drinking straws as seriously as I do (just neon kids straws) but finally, I'm set!

We also picked up a fabulous turquoise glass pitcher to keep on the table for water, juice or ice tea. I'm still looking out for other things to add to our collection for entertaining with (vintage punch bowl set, and I kinda feel a vintage tumbler collection coming on) but right now I'm tickled pink drinking my rose Italian soda through a star spangled straw at last :)

Italian Soda:
  • 1oz Any syrup (Monin and Torani are the easiest to find)
  • 9oz Soda Water
Interesting fact about the Italian soda, it was actually invented in the US! It got it's name because it was mixed from popular syrups from Italy in the 1920's.

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