Monday, 13 December 2010

Christmas with a Vintage Twist

[Seasons] Greetings loved ones! We hope you're feeling as festive and eager for the season as we are. As fair season 2010 winds down, we give Judy HQ a good spruce and Bookings [and Facilities - never forget Facilities!] Manager Sam Collins ponders over what colour post-it notes will be 'on-trend' in 2011 [Honeysuckle perhaps?] we wanted to give you a short write-up of all the antics from York's Affordable Vintage Fair and some thoughts on a fantastic season.

As our final fair of 2010, located smack in the middle of this wonderful month, it's safe to say we were a little bit psyched for York. Set within the museum gardens, York's Affordable Vintage Fair is always that little bit more bewitching than others. Perhaps it is something about The Hospitium, but our stock always seems extra appealing, the cakes extra tasty and both traders and shoppers alike bursting with enthusiasm. Hosting an evening event for the first time, the entire fair had an air of Fantasia about it, as if the suits might ask the dresses to dance at any moment. Greeting the guests at the door, the caramel vocals of Ruby Macintosh and her festive troupe ensured that the magic never wavered all night [take a look below]

To hear Ruby in action [and because i'm having an absolute technological 'mare] click here.

Wandering around the fair, it made me realise what a phenomenal year this had been for Judy's, for vintage and for fashion as a whole. Perhaps I was blinded by the fairy lights, but seeing the dramatic silhouettes of the capes and coats hanging on the rails, the abundance of leather and shearling and the timeless dresses made me think this may be my favourite A/W to date.

With a constant stream of shoppers coming out of the cold, it made me realise how far vintage clothing has come; gone or the connotations of something for students, the wrinkled-noses associated with 'second-hand' or something that's not completely new. Although some still hold this true, in today's increasingly shoestring society, our former penchant for something in size-order, uneconomical and one of many almost seems selfish, if not lazy. Whilst stuffing our faces [thanks Tea Dance ladies] and observing all those who had come to York instead of the hernia-inducing Highstreet, it dawned on me that vintage was victorious. The streams of people at York, the thousands that came out to London, Lincoln, Scotland and Leeds, the new cities that welcomed us with open arms were all testament that Judy's is onto a winner. Milling around the rails of eighties glitter, fifties glamour and forties dapper-ware, it was never more apparent that old-fashion isn't old-fashioned. Maybe all that mulled-apple juice had gone to my noggin, but I felt proud to be a part of it.

Phew! That's enough of that before we get even more misty-eyed. Taking a wee break for the holidays, the vintage Style blog will be back early ready next year, jam-packed with all the Judy news, dates and trends as we burst into 2011. We've even gone and got us a new design...Fancy!

And to end on a rather 'festive' note, check out this rather incriminating piece of evidence from the Judy's Affordable Vintage Fair Christmas bash. Five booze-hounds, one bar tab. You do the merry maths [safe to say, all I want for Christmas is a new liver.]

Merry Christmas vintage fans and see you next year!

Vintage Vulture out xVx

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Getting ahead with Now, Voyager!

Greetings loved ones! Now as crimbo draws upon us [and some of you are getting ready and merry for York's Affordable Vintage Fair tonight] there may be some of you who are looking in the mirror, feeling like the ghost of Christmas past-it. 'Never fear!' I tell you, for those lovely ladies and headgear-enthusiasts Now, Voyager have prepared a winning how-to guide on how to get the best out of your barnet, ready for the festive season. Combs at the ready, lets get QUOFFED!

'Hi Judy Fans!

You may remember Now, Voyager from lots of Judy’s Fairs! If we haven’t had the pleasure of meeting you yet, allow us to introduce ourselves - we at Now, Voyager offer glamour & silliness for your hair in the form of everything you can imagine…from our famous birdie hair clips (Judy's fave!) to cake hair clips (master-baker and booking manager Sam Collins' fave adornment when baking like a maniac!). Now, if you're a bloke, we apologise for you may be bored stiff [although when we're though with your ladies it will be worth the tedium!] Ladies, if you'll bare with us, allow us to take you on a retro hair journey (just in time for the holidays...)


We have become slightly addicted to vintage hair. Styles so voluminous & shiny they call to our very hearts and make boys’ heads turn…but how to achieve this on a day-to-day basis? [and without becoming rather vain?] Our vintage hairstyle obsession began with a trip to East London’s Powder Room. After a speedy make-up and 50’s style hair do for a birthday party, we were in love.

As we watched the talented Powderpuff Girl expertly roll our fringes (while being treated to tea & biscuits-yum!), we were inspired to try it at home [and have never looked back!] Firstly, we recommend that you find a vintage hairstylist in your area, and get your hair styled. This should only cost around £10-£15 and is a great way to get to grips with vintage hair if its a new world to you. Additionally, you can pick up good tips - for instance, when back-combing make sure you back-comb straight and not at an angle, i.e. hacking the hair, to avoid hair damage [leaving you looking like Russel Brand circa '06]


Now you know what you are trying to achieve at home, take five, turn on your computer and log on to the Youtube tutorials [ahh, the wonders of the internet!] Start with rolling your fringe & practicing victory rolls, shown in the tutorial below. Once you get the hang of this, it can become an easy everyday hairstyle taking only about 10 mins.

Youtube Tutorial-Rolled Fringe & Victory Rolls


If you can't get the right amount of volume, you can roll you hair around hair padding, which is available in blonde, black & brown on eBay for around £5. Practice until you are feeling slightly cocky, then you can try some extra special Updos like the one below. Should you achieve this, watch the size of your head grow as the compliments start flying!

Youtube Tutorial-Updo

After such success, you could then venture on to the wonderful world of pin curling for bombshell hair!

Youtube Tutorial-Pin Curling Part One

Youtube Tutorial-Pin Curling Part Two


You can also purchase PDF files of vintage beauty guides at Retro Belles.

Of course, now that your hair is styled you will surely feel the need for some adornment. That's where Now, Voyager! comes in. Cakes, birds and toys galore!

In light of such a brilliant bonnet, we would love to see pics of your vintage hair styles & send in any hair tips you have for use on our Now, Voyager blog ! Please e-mail them to

[As its the season of goodwill, we thought we would throw in a 50’s make-up tutorial, just for good measure! ]

Youtube Tutorial-50’s Make-Up


Happy Holidays Vintage Lovers!

Cake & Kisses,

Felicity & Jess

Now, Voyager xx '

Wooah Nelly! Now there's no excuse for you to look brushed, preened and plucky in time for all those festive dos. Follow a few of these ladies tips, and your follicles will be looking so fifties that onlookers will wonder what decade they're in when the clock strikes twelve!

See some of you tonight festive revellers and for the rest of you, expect a full report of York's retro grotto [alongside the usual oldschol musings and perusings next week!]

A spirited VV out xVx

Monday, 29 November 2010

Vintage in The Blizzard: Lincoln and Sheffield's Affordable Vintage Fairs

Greetings loved ones! We hope you've got that heating cranked up as you peruse, possibly swaddled in some sort of blanket/jacket/couture cape as the country comes under lock-down for the Big Freeze '10. Never one for curfews [or common sense!] we here at Judy HQ threw caution to the wind this weekend, braving the elements to bring you both Lincoln and Sheffield's Affordable Vintage Fairs, filling your wardrobes and warming your cockles as we plod on through November.

Setting-up shop from midday, almost 700 of you trudged,waddled and shimmied your way down to Lincoln's Engine Shed for a butchers at our 40-odd stalls of vintage bits. With photographer and local lass Charlie Heather-Cray behind the lens, here are some of our favourtie snaps from a chilly albeit busy Affordable Vintage Fair...

Handcrafted gifts, hats, bags and scarves, row upon row of faux fur and even knitting patterns and haberdashery to fend of the cold all season long - well worth an abominable trek in the arctic outdoors for! As our be-caped and hatted customer above demonstrates, even though you may not be the biggest city on the Affordable Vintage Fair map Lincoln, you're always at the forefront, fashionably-speaking [geography be damned!]

As alarms went off and we bombed down the motorway to do it all again, all thoughts of Siberian temperatures and chattering teeth were left behind as Sheffield's Affordable Vintage Fair was given the warmest of welcomes! With every tea-ladened trader mucking in to help those stranded in the snow set-up, The Workstation came together as the clock struck 11 and the first 200 of you flew through the doors in the first sixty minutes! First warming your cockles and stuffing your chops at The Travelling Tea Shoppe, registers were ringing as you stocked-up on Winter staples, menswear, dresses, retro accessories and old-world best, ready for those festive dos which are just around the corner...

So there we have it folks. Our penultimate fairs of the season went off with a bang and it's a pleasure to know that several months on from those sunny September fairs at the beginning of the season, our traders are still pulling out all the stops and you are snapping them up. For that [and for all those that came out with runny noses or chattering teeth] we say thanks! Whether in mohair or miniskirts, deck shoes or doc martens, vintage is an all-weather affair. Cheers for coming down and hope to see you at our final event of the year, York's Affordable [festive] Vintage Fair for Christmas with a vintage twist. For anyone wishing to spot me and wish a vintage merry christmas, look for the boy spinning around in policeman's cape, spilling a circumference of mulled wine and probably sporting a jumper so festive it's arrestable the other eleven months of the year. Ahh, tis the season!

Over and out,

A soon-to-be-merry Vintage Vulture xVx

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

A season in the shoes of Judy's Affordable Vintage Fair

Greetings loved ones! Now its been a few since i've graced your shores dropping pearls left, right and centre like an oyster with butter fingers but as fair season A/W 10 comes to a close and things start to slow down at Judy HQ, you once more have my undivided attention [well, not quite undivided - we still have the old-school bonanzas that are Lincoln, Sheffield and an incredibly festive York to do. But apart from that, its blog,blog,blog, chomp, chomp, chomp - it's practically December and so it would be considered intolerable if i didn't stuff my face.]

As is the tendency towards this slim, festive slither of the year that remains, we here at Judy HQ have taken a look back at the season that's just been - a season of new cities, fresh faces and, of course, vintage outfits galore. Waxing historical and in that favourite style of our resident bookings manager, the list, here's our top 5 Judy's moments throughout A/W 10...

1. The Vintage Furniture Flea

Born from a love of homewares treading the decades and embracing the current trend to furnish ecclectically, the Vintage Furniture Flea was born. Focusing primarily on the 50s through to the 70s, the Bethnal Green event was a roaring success, grabbing a flat-pack Ikea generation by the scruff of the neck and demonstrating the ease of furnishing an abode with genuine old-school articles without costing an arm and a leg. Capturing all the chutzpah of a bustling Brooklyn flea, we can't wait for the next one! NYC via Bethnal Green? Yes please!

2. The launch of new cities -Brighton and Birmingham

With knitted brows and shrewed faces we at Judy HQ waited to see where would be the latest destinations to recieve the Judy Berger vintage fair treatment. As the pointing stick [there was no actual 'pointing stick' - contrary to popular belief, Judy HQ isn't some sort of war bunker, 150 ft below ground] landed on not one but TWO destinations, one right in the belly of Britannia and the other south of the border [er, so to speak...] the job was done. Launching for the first time this month, Brighton and Birmingham's Affordable Vintage Fairs were a laugh riot! With you Midlands kids going loco for vintage and our 60 traders at Brighton representin' our biggest fair yet, we loved it. The only problem is: WE WANT MORE! Bigger, better,bolder, like that bit in Power Rangers where the baddy gets even LARGER! Now, i can't give too much away but let's just say....Wales, its morphin' time!

3. The Vintage Pop-Up at The Corn Exchange

Whats that you say, sonny? You want to turn a gorgeous, medieval stalwart of the community into a what....a block of hotels?! An Asda?! I don't think so sunshine! Packed to the rafters with vintage bits from all over Yorkshire, Leeds' Corn Exchange was brought back to life by Berger and crew! Where empty pale-faced rooms once stood, now stand rail upon rail of retro paraphanalia, capes, coats and magazines, eyeglasses, accessories and jewellery, jumpers galore and a whole lot more. Finally taking its rightful place as a retail Duke of the local community, the Corn Exchange is alive and kicking [apart from their ghost of course...still, you have to pick your battles!]

4. Judy's Affordable Vintage Fair Leeds - September 2010

T: "Hey mate. are we going to go to that vintage fair that's going on at the Union?"

S: "Oh, i dunno mate - i'm hanging, have uni at one and i'm broke."

T:"Hmm, says here that there's cake. And fill a bag for a tenner..."

[insert dust cloud where students used to be]

Times the above scenario by about 1900 and we're pretty much there. Wow.

5. Bethnal Green' Affordable Vintage Fair

The Big Smoke is always a big one but little did we know just how VERY big it was going to be. 2000 of you eager vintage beavers perused our stalls and stripped our rails clean - not a faux fur in site or a barbour for miles come hometime! London, you were hungry for it and for your appetite, we salute you. God save the...well, you!

So there we have it folks! Keep your eyes glued here for more lists and nostalgia as the weeks go passed and for all of those umming and ahing about Lincoln, Sheffield and York in the next two weeks, we hope this has wet your appetite.

A very happy and humbled VV out! x

Wednesday, 17 November 2010

How to shop the vintage fairs

By guest blogger Laura Davies, visit her exquisite blog here

Vintage fairs can be pretty scary places to the novice shopper; endless stalls, piles of clothes everywhere and manic bargain hunters with sharpened elbows. As a hardened vintage shopper I’ve developed a few techniques that have helped me score some real treasures, all with military precision:

Set A Budget: It’s all too easy to get caught up in the excitement of it all and want to spend spend spend. The best thing is to work out your absolute maximum you can spend, get it in cash (keep it in a safe place obviously) and LEAVE YOUR CARD AT HOME! This means that you’ll really consider what you’re buying and you’ll end up with wonderful things that you’ll wear year after year. And your overdraft will remain untouched, hurrah!

Go With A Group: It’s always lovely going shopping with your friends but at a vintage fair, they really come in handy. When you get into the fair, split up. Especially if the fair is huge, it can be difficult to see all the stalls so if you and your pals spread out, you can cover more ground. Look out for things your friends might like and get them to do the same so that when you get together, you can direct each other to that stall with “the amazing dress that would look amazing on you”

Know Yourself: I did just quote Ashlene from Big Brother but it’s important to know what you like and you don’t, what suits you and what doesn’t etc. All too often I’ll be persuaded to buy something that doesn’t quite fit just because it’s cheap and I’m buzzing off all the bargain hunting. Don’t fall into that trap! It may seem like a good idea to buy that 80s sequinned batwing jumper because it’s only £1 and it’s got a zebra on it but will it go with that 70s maxi dress you just bought? No. Buying things for comedic value is also not good.

Do Your Research: Research is the best way to find the real gems. If you’re on the quest for an early 60s dress worthy of Betty Draper, look into the fabrics and the patterns of the dresses of that time. That means that you can do a quick scan of a rail and spot what you’re looking for instantly, just by looking at the sleeve of a garment. A seasoned shopper can tell a ‘good’ rail from a ‘bad’ rail at 20 paces.

Always check bargain buckets: This is pretty self-explanatory but it’s really worth having a quick look in bargain boxes and sale rails. Most of the time you’ll resurface empty handed but once I found a pair of 1960s cream vinyl ankle boots at the bottom of a basket. Got em for a tenner, cracking.

I hope these tips will serve you well when you hit the next fair near you. Good luck and God speed!

This blog post was brought to you by Laura Davies (guest blogger of the week!)

Friday, 12 November 2010

the full vintage events diary for 2010

Judy's Affordable Vintage Dates for your diary

As the nights draw in we are nearly at the end of our vintage tour of the country. So, we thought we'd give you a simple list of all the vintage events that are coming to a town near you in November and December. Write them down, iphone them or just mark them in your diaries.

Birmingham's Affordable Vintage Fair
Saturday 13th November
Aston University Student Union, Aston Triangle, Birmingham, B4 7ES
Opening hours: 11:30 - 16:30
Entry £2.00 / NUS/OAP £1.00 / Under 12s go free

Over 45 stalls of fabulous vintage from the 20s to the 80s, plus re-worked, hand-made and amazing jewellery, fabrics and haberdashery. Large menswear stalls plus some childrens clothing and our Vintage Tea Party will be open all day serving up proper homemade cakes and treats.

Click for Website or Facebook


The London Vintage Kilo Sale
Saturday 13th / Sunday 14th November
The Rag Factory, 16 Heneage Street, London, E1 5LJ (just off Brick Lane)
Entry £1.00

Over 2.5 tonnes of vintage clothes, pick and mix from thousands of items, take them to the weigh station and we'll charge you by weight. Pay just £15 per kilo of vintage - that's around 4 - 6 items. Plus Vintage Tea Party, wholesale jewellery room and re-worked room.

Click for Website or Facebook


Cambridge's Affordable Vintage Fair
Saturday 20th November
The Guidhall, Market Square, Cambridge, CB2 3QJ
Opening Hours: 10:30 - 16:30
Entry £2.00 / Under 12s go free
Two rooms of the beautiful Guildhall will be filled with vintage treasures dating back to the 1920s. Expect lots of vintage bargains, glorious 40s and 50s dealers and hand-made items perfect for Christmas gifts and party season.

Click for Website or Facebook


The Vintage Furniture Flea
Sunday 21st November
York Hall, Old Ford Road, Bethnal Green, London, E2 9PJ
11:00 Early Bird / 11:30 - 4:30
Entry Early Bird: £3.00 / General £2.00 / Under 12s go free

Our new business venture born out of our love for mid-century furniture and retro homewares. This sale will encompass all aspects of vintage living from the late 40s to the late 70s. Expect affordable homewares, furniture, ceramics, lighting, fabrics, prints and collectibles. Plus, a delectable vintage tea party and live music.

Click for Website or Facebook

Lincoln's Affordable Vintage Fair
Saturday 27th November
The Engine Shed, Brayford Pool, Lincoln, LN6 7TS
12:00 - 17:00
Entry £1.00 / Under 12s go free

A regular date for all the Lincoln fans out there. With over 50 traders selling an eclectic mix of vintage dating back to the 1940s and our vintage tea party.
Click for Website or Facebook


Sheffield's Affordable Vintage Fair
Sunday 28th November
The Workstation [next to the Showroom Cinema] 15 Paternoster Row, Sheffield, S1 2BX
Opening Hours: 11am - 4pm
£1.00 Entry / Under 12s go free

One of our largest vintage fairs returns to Sheffield with 2 floors of pure vintage bargains, collectables, hand-made and re-worked clothes, jewellery and accessories. The Vintage tea party will be serving up home made cakes on the top floor alongside live music and Christmas gift stalls - thank goodness this event falls on payday.

Click for Website or Facebook

York's Affordable Vintage Fair
Thursday 9th December
The Hospitium, Museum Gardens, Museum Street, York, YO1 7FR
Opening hours: 16:00 - 21:00
Entry £1.50 / Under 12s go free

With the fairy lights lighting up the Museum Gardens this winter we thought we would bring you a Christmas shopping event on a school night. Expect carol singers, mince pies and our beautiful selection of vintage atire, homewares, fabrics, haberdashery, jewellery and hand-made. A perfect place to pick up a Christmas jumper and treat your friends to a unique gift.

Click for Website or Facebook

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

The Vintage Furniture Flea

I would like to formally introduce you to our new business venture - The Vintage Furniture Flea. Born out of my love for all things 'retro home' and my passion for mid century furniture, The Vintage Furniture Flea is set to help all you vintage lovers out there who want a little old school in your home without paying silly prices.

Our First Furniture Flea will take place at our London venue - York Hall, Old Ford Road, Bethnal Green, London E29PJ.

Here's our first flyer (very Elle Deco) and our lovely posters (we'll be selling these for £2 on the door of the Flea). Here's hoping it's successful so we can roll it out around the country.

For more details please visit our furniture Flea website or our facebook fan page or click to confirm you are coming on the event page.

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Head above the rest

Greetings loved ones. Now, not to bombard you so with three bloggo posts in a row [Ker-azy!] but due to an iminent jaunt to Krakow [hello holidays!] i want to leave you with enough pearls and insights to keep you sated in my absence [to be fair, i'm sure the rest of the style blog posse will keep you nice and full - i'm just being narcissistic - why, if my head blows up any more, maybe i can use it helium balloon 'Around the World in 80 days' style and float to Poland...]
For those lucky pups who peruse our fortnightly large newsletter, i'm sure you saw our introduction to new Brighton trader and milliner-magnifique, KC Lake. Following her debut London show last week, we caught up with her to have a little chat about the lady behind the hats....

Q. KC, how on earth did you get into headgear?

A."It was on my honeymoon in October 2009 that I declared to my husband Lex that I was going to make hats. He sighed and I set about making an action plan. The sigh was not out of contempt but because it was another thing on a long list of creative endeavours I have pursued and subsequently let go; dressmaking (too technical), silkscreen printing (I lacked the tenacity) knitting (never got past knit one), interior decoration, soft furnishings, framing, junky styling and jewellery making are all pastimes I have dabbled in and still enjoy, in small doses. By November I had set up a home studio and in March I enrolled in Millinery 1 at London College of Fashion, under the expert tutelage of Chloe Scrivener. Ten weeks and three hats (felt, straw and buckram) later I was well and truly hooked. It transpires that millinery is in my blood (my great aunt was a milliner proper) and now it is an all consuming passion of mine.

Q.Would you say you have any definite influences?

A."I draw from many themes however vintage 1920-30’s and the gothic seem to reoccur in my work. I do not follow convention in the way I work. I cannot draw (perspectives and I just don’t get on) so I do not start with a sketch of an idea and I never seem to get round to mood boards. I work from people, photos, images, outfits, places…I work from the gut, on feeling and instinct. My millinery is driven from materials I source and I freestyle designs rather than block (blocks are expensive!). Freestyling guarantees completely unique shapes; to me individuality is the most important ethos."

Q.Do you see your pieces as wearable and where do they fit into a conventional fashion market?

A."People do stop me in the street and want to talk about the hat I am wearing. Those who have commissioned my pieces relay back all the (good!) attention they got when wearing it. I would love people to want to wear my hats for any occasion, not just to the races or a wedding. As for whether they fit in, i'd say probably not, but that's fine - I have never followed trends. My millinery is an example of the fanciful and freakish reconstructed into wearable art. Conceptual and completely bespoke, the handmade designs change with each new vision or commission. The styles I create are avant-garde, casual, edgy, eccentric and whimsical."

Whimsical is definitely the word. As you can see by the pictures below, KC's pieces, a mishmash of inspirations, time periods and locations are almost dream-like in their ambiguity. Gothic lace, shapes and styles such as turbans and exuberant colours take the eye to a land that time forgot, adding a touch of storybook to modern life. With milllinery like hers, we see how headgear doesn't have to be frumpy or one-time appropriate, but fantastical and exciting. Trading at Brighton on Sunday 7th November, go check her out.

Well, that's all from me folks - i'll be back in a week with pictures of all the occular delights Eastern Europe has to offer - vintage style blog on tour! With cold, cold weather ahead, i'm going to take a leaf out of Jason Scwarzman's book, circa 'Rushmore...'


Tuesday, 2 November 2010

Pop goes the Vintage Shop!

Greetings loved ones. Now, in the run up to tonight's launch, prepping, checking sockets and locks and making sure everyone's ready to go, just a quickie to remind you that The Vintage Pop Up Shop launches TONIGHT from 5pm at the Corn Exchange! Huzzah!

So, what's on offer? Vintage stylin', incredible decor, music, offers, the whole shebang! It's going to be like retail time-travel all under one roof. For those of you who didn't our post about a Casper-esque experience at the Corn Exchange, [see post below] here's a closer picture of the little haunter prowling the balconies. Spooky...
Roll up tonight from 5pm for a chance to catch this Corn Exchange spectre for yourself. If being a medium's not really your bag and your more about mingling than Mulder and Scully, then just come along for the event. As this lovely picture of our bookings manager Sam Collins depicts, you know you want a SLICE of the action!