‘Tis the season to be jolly… drunk on gin and champagne. Attending two rather splendid parties in a week, first the Chap Magazine‘s second Grand Anarcho-Dandyist Ball, closely followed by the New Sheridan Club‘s Back To The Futurists Christmas Party, has left me feeling rather in need of a detox. But, oh! What fun they were!
At Christmas time, it’s my yearly tradition to work with my best friend of 12 years, in the posh kitchenwares shop that she manages. The downside of this is that I have hardly any time in which to get ready for the big Christmas parties that I wish to attend. But, hopefully, I pulled it off! Let me show you the evidence.
I didn’t have my camera for the Chap Ball. Which turned out to be a good thing, because the gin and tonics were so very strong, and I managed to acquire so many of them over the evening, that I would probably have broken and/or lost it. The only surviving photos are by others, and none of them show my (in my opinion) fabulous gown in all its glory. Oh well – this just means I can wear it again, sooner rather than later!
Here I am at the beginning of the night in a photo by Mark Davies, posing with the Chap’s designer Michaela and wearing a 1930s gown. It’s made from heavy, double-layered black crepe with cream/white (it needs dry cleaning I think) birds woven into it. The thin straps, neckline and hem are trimmed with ruffled, black silk velvet. I wore a black velvet ribbon as a belt, a coppery gold bird in my hair, gold sandals, and my Able Grable faux fur capelet! In the second photo, I’m with the gorgeous ladies Bethan (who organised the event with The Chap and doesn’t have a blog), Gemma Bake Do and Mend, Jeni Yesterday Girl, Lisa Snoodlebug and Penny Dreadful. Photo is from Jeni’s camera. I think we all look smashing (and tipsy).
And then it all started to go a bit wonky.
In photos pinched from Penny Dreadful and my friend Russell, you can see the rather epic dancing that went on later. The second one I particularly like, with Sara and I dancing to the ‘On a Ragga Tip’ part of Mr B. The Gentleman Rhymer’s ‘Songs For Acid Edward’ ditty. Mr B actually launched his brand-new Album ‘I Say’ on this very night, and I can vouch for its sheer brilliance (follow the link to his shop if you care to).
The rest of the night was a blur of Top Shelf Jazz, Viv the Spiv’s tabletop horse racing, Nickolas Grace and general debauchery. Clayton Hartley took some great photos of the Night of a Thousand Waistcoats, which can be found on his Flickr, so do take a look.
It did take me almost the whole week to recover, which I did just in time for the New Sheridan Party. This was a much smaller affair after the 800 attendees of the Chap Ball, full of friends, and much more reserved (for me!). It had an Avant Garde, Futurism theme, and I decided to wear a fairly plain dress, but with some rather snazzy, snowflake fairy-lights upon my head!
Sorry about the bright flash! It looks like I’m wearing a jumpsuit here, but in fact, the dress was a brand new black ‘1940s Maxi Dress’, purchased from Warehouse. I had planned to add some kind of art deco beading to it, but ran out of time (and energy), so instead I wore a silver ribbon as a belt, and pinned on a sun-bursty brooch (with matching earrings). Since I don’t own any silver sandals, I wore my Rocket Originals Esther wedges. (Psst. Have you seen Rocket’s new Lana design? Amazing!). The fairy lights had a substantial battery pack containing three AA batteries, and was really quite heavy and hard to disguise! I did this in about half an hour, and I think I can do better for New Year’s Eve, when I intend to wear it again! Perhaps with the bird gown this time. I finished off the costume with silver eyeshadow and nail varnish.
New Sheridan parties are always a wheeze. Jeni, Bethan and I played Shoot the Lobster off the Telephone, which Jeni actually managed to do! We missed the Priest-Dragging completely. I also didn’t win anything in the Grand Raffle, sadly, but Bethan and I watched lovely Minna aka Red Legs take home the Bespoke Shirt prize, and Jeni snaffle some delicious SW4 Gin. Hurrah!
Again, there are some more photos of everyone, from Matt the Gentleman Juggler (amazing) to Suri Sumatra’s Metropolis themed act (breathtaking) to be seen on Clayton’s Flickr stream, so do go have a look.
Phew. That’s all for now! Pip pip!