If I had a mere English pound for every remark I’d heard about not having the time to be glamorous, I could retire and simply just be glamorous without having to work. But the truth is, that as an inherently quite lazy person, my secret is to look like I’m high-maintenance, without actually putting in vast quantities of time or effort. I use all sorts of cheat methods – instead of pincurling or sleeping in rollers, I had a light perm (to change the structure of my hair), and use hot sticks. You know this, if you’re a regular reader.
I don’t claim to be an advocate of 24/7 glamour. There are times when I have my hair scraped back in a bun and fairly rubbishy clothes on. But my ‘knocking-about’ clothes tend to be things like old, threadbare housedresses, old Heyday trousers that I’ve ripped the turnup and just safety-pinned (see above about being lazy – the motto about ‘a stitch in time’ doesn’t figure strongly in my life!), retro-esque tshirts and so on. If I open the door to a canvasser or the postie, they probably think I’m terribly eccentric, but I at least look decently put-together in my mind. And this is hugely important to me. Glamour has been my lifeline over the last year.
Well, that’s a bit dramatic. But I’ve had a tough year for one reason and another (still ongoing, sorry to say), and I’ve been, to put an amusing name to it, a bit down in the dumps! Sometimes, all I have wanted to do is stay in bed and never get dressed. But I have made an effort not to let my standards slip. I know I’ve talked about this on here before…several times in fact. So humour me as I bring this up again, for no reason other than justifying it to myself!
My red lipstick, vintage hairdos and extensive retro wardrobe are like my armour against the negativity. They make my life better. Because of how I look, and my obvious passion and dedication, opportunities have come my way. Which isn’t to say that I don’t work hard to make a living: I do. But sometimes strange and random things crop up. I believe in fate and embrace the funny things it throws at me. My look and the fact that I show it off has gained me invites to events. It’s got me a part in a short film. It’s got me freebies. It makes strangers talk to me. It gets me paid work. It does tend to put off men, it’s true. Obviously the wrong men! But it makes me who I am. If I feel like crap, putting in my usual effort helps to offset that crapness. I am not diminished WITHOUT my vintage warpaint… but WITH it, I am unstoppable! Or so I like to think. I couldn’t get this daily boost if it wasn’t easy to do. If you want to lead a more glamorous life, keep it simple. Start small – you can always build up! These are the things I always try to do when I am in my most subdued mood. They work for me!
- Wear lipstick! If you’ve never gone red, then embrace the pillarbox! If not, then a rose pink is suitably vintage, without being too scary. Try MAC Russian Red for the former, Boots No. 7 Classic Rose for the latter.
- Paint your nails! Mine are in a dreadful state, but polish transforms them. OPI’s Start to Finish makes my manicure last a week. Expensive but worth it.
- Put on a nice frock, just to go shopping. I’m not talking about a ballgown or a cocktail dress, but something bright and summery. Don’t save your vintage for best! And don’t wear dark, drab clothes if you’re feeling dark and drab. Wear colour and walk tall in it – you look smashing!
- Drink your tea from a vintage teacup. I definitely don’t do this very often as a teacup just doesn’t hold enough to satisfy my addiction, but it doesn’t half make you feel special when you’re sipping from an art deco delight!
- Put a flower in your hair! Even if you haven’t styled it in a vintage way, give yourself a side parting and pop a bloom on the parting side. Instant pin-up!
- Wear an armful of bright, musical bangles. Bakelite, bamboo, wood and modern plastic – they all make a wonderful noise and look splendid.
- Go out and do some exercise. Whether it’s a run, cycle, swim, or just a walk around the block. It’ll raise your endorphins and the fresh air will put colour in your cheeks. Nothing is more glamorous than a glowing complexion! Finding stylish workout wear is of course a separate problem I’ve complained about recently… but when you’ve finished, you can get the aforementioned vintage frock on!
I hope this advice doesn’t sound too patronising, obvious or trite. There are many people in the world who have worse problems than me, problems that can’t be eased with red lipstick and hair flowers. But I have genuinely found some solace in these little things over the last year, which has honestly been pretty relentlessly downbeat in some areas.
And so this blog isn’t completely image-free, let me talk about one lovely invite I got recently. Initially it was meant to be just me, but over the course of the evening, four of the Mafia ended up at this soiree thrown by St-Germain, a, elderflower liqueur. Talking of fate, the chap who created St-G was an American who had never tasted elderflower before a fateful trip to France, but who then spent his life savings trying to create an alcoholic version of the ambrosia he tasted! If we weren’t all such glamourpusses I’m sure we wouldn’t have been welcomed so warmly… since the other girls all came straight from the office! 😉
Here I am demonstrating use of lipstick, nailvarnish, hair flowers and bangles! 😉 Running and teacups are not pictured. Thanks must go to the lovely Tina, pictured in the middle!
This was also the night that we found the venue for our big sale, since after stumbling into a local diner we’d never previously entered, we got talking to the owner (who was fascinated with our looks) and sweet talked him into letting us hold our event there. See… being glamorous makes stuff happen, ladies.
I’ll fill you in on the sale soon… till then, I hope you are all feeling happy and healthy my dear readers!