Monday, 31 May 2010

Judy's does Radio One's Big Weekend

Although we didn't manage to lure Fearne Cotton to our Affordable Vintage Tent we had a blast at Radio One's big Weekend. It gave us a real taste of what to expect from the festival season. We just can't wait to get back on the road!

Our marquee was packed full of vintage. There were maxi dresses, leather backpacks, sunglasses, jewellery, too much gorgeous vintage to mention! Here are some of the stallholders who joined us:

If you didn't see us at Radio One's Big Weekend check us out at the other festivals we will be visiting over the summer:

Beach Break Live 14th-18th June
Hop Farm Festival 2nd-3rd July
Lovebox 16th-18th July
Secret Garden Party 22nd-25th July
Kendal Calling 30th-31st July
Vintage At Goodwood 13th-15th August

Thursday, 27 May 2010

The Marvellous Summer Fete

I'm planning a trip to The Marvellous Tea Dance Companies Summer Fete this Saturday. Hosted by the lovely ladies from The Marvellous Tea Dance Company, it proves to be yet another legendary soiree. The Faversham will be decked out with an abundance of bunting, mis matched crockery and vintage lovelies, let's not forget the cake!

I can't think of anything better than enjoying a good old english high tea on Saturday, so throw on your vintage glad rags and i'll see you there! Mmm cake yum yum!

The Marvellous Tea Dance Company Presents Summer Fete
The Faversham, 1-5 Springfield Mount, Leeds, LS2 9NG
Saturday 29th May

Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Leeds Affordable Vintage Fair and Ruby Macintosh

We had a fantastic day on Sunday at our last Leeds fair of the season. Nearly 600 of you dropped in to the Riley Smith Hall during the day to take advantage of the many bargains on offer from our 40 lovely traders and left looking happy and laden with many a bag! We had fantastic menswear from Princes Vintage, gorgeous jewellery from Victoria Vintage, Leonore Holder and Dolls and Molls as well as stunning homeware from Benjamin Jay, to name but a few of the traders. The Marvellous Tea Dance Ladies were also there with their fabulous cupcakes, three of which I had the pleasure of sampling (including their new Tiramisu flavoured cupcake which was gorgeous) and our very own vintage fair in house singer, Ruby Macintosh, serenaded us with her fantastic covers and original tunes throughout the day.

In fact, I was flicking through an old copy of ‘You’ magazine the other day (dated 16th august 2009 so practically vintage!) and who should I happen to come across but none other than Ruby. She was being covered in their article about stars of the future and was even featured on the contents page looking ever the lovely 50’s starlet.

For more info on Ruby or to have a listen to her yourself, visit

We will be in Leicester this weekend so if you missed the Leeds fair, make sure you pop along.

See you there!


Wednesday, 12 May 2010

London's Affordable Vintage Fair

1000 of you turned out in full force to welcome The Affordable Vintage Fair to it's new home in York Hall, Bethnal Green. We set out a spectacular fair covering 6 decades with over 45 stalls. We had dresses from £5 sitting next to 1940s evening dresses for a mere £40. Homewares stalls sat amongst haberdashery, jewellery and of course vintage menswear was in abundance. Here's a sneaky peek at some of our home grown photographs (the professional ones will be with us next week). Our next Bethnal Green vintage fair will be in October 2010, visit our website and sign up to the mailing list for reminders.

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Cambridge Vintage Fairs

The Cambridge Affordable Vintage Fair was fun, fun, fun!! For those of you who missed the frock spectacular, we filled two large halls with vintage clothes, jewellery and nik naks for men, women and children. And nearly 1000 of you turned up to shop and snap up bargains galore.

We noticed quite a large amount of newcomers to the vintage scene who had popped in to see what the fuss was about, and they all walked away with bags full of new clothes.

A huge thank you as well to the lovely Sam who gave good tea and cake!

Here's some images of the fair for you to fawn over. And don't worry Cambridge we will be back in the guildhall in the Autumn

Monday, 3 May 2010

Femininity and Glamour

Everyone is channelling the 1940's look at the moment. I wish I had been catching some rays at Coachella like Kelly O and Dita Von Teese, but I suppose there is always next year. I'm looking forward to the start of the British festival season and all the festivals we have planned with The Affordable Vintage Fair this summer! I found the article on the left in this weeks Grazia magazine. The thing that particularly excites me about the 40's trend (apart from the floral tea dresses!) is the hair. I've never really delved into the world of pin curls, waves and victory rolls but I'm going to do some serious experimentation. I'd most like to try Bette Davis' look since I fell in love with her watching 'Now, Voyager' recently. I'll let you know how it goes!

It's not just the forties that are having a revival, Marc Jacobs Autumn Winter 2010 collection was so fifties it hurt! The dresses and skirts made from masses of fabric oozed glamour and femininity. Jacobs sights inspiration from fifties film starlets such as Doris Day, Sophia Loren and Brigitte Bardot. I know where I will be looking for my festival attire inspiration.


On this lovely ‘hot’, ‘sunny’ and definitely NOT rainy bank holiday Monday in Leeds*, I thought id take the opportunity to finally write up my first blog post for the Affordable Vintage Fair in the form of a personal introduction and hopefully take like a duck to water and consequently become the next Tavi (minus the 13 year old bit. Although I have been told I look young for my age...)

So firstly, hello! I’m Sam and I help organise the bookings and promotion for The Affordable Vintage Fair. I am a great lover of vintage (as you may have expected), particularly anything that channels the edgy Spanish Harlem influenced styling’s of the Ronnettes with their big beehives and even bigger eyelashes (they used to have competitions in the dressing rooms to see who could have the biggest beehive or the longest lashes) : -

To the slightly more prim and often masculine style of the Shangri-la’s with their peter pan collars, pussy bows and playful take on men’s clothing, the picture below on the right being a great example of this : -

In fact, here I am at Leeds fest '07 trying to work that pussy bow/peter pan collar look: -

Although I have actually found myself channelling the 90’s recently (blame Selfridges introducing 90’s vintage into its concept store) with a grungy and distressed grey oversized denim jacket my brother bought in the mid 90’s, a leather yin/yang necklace and John Lennon circular sunglasses, two items of which can be seen in the pic below. I just wonder though whether the poster in the background is trying to tell me that I need to think again on whether channelling the 90’s really is such a great idea...

Overall though, I love mixing it all up and creating something that doesn’t look like it comes from just one era but instead takes elements from many and combines them together to create something new. Its the creativity that vintage allows for which is great; its the not knowing what you may find when rifling through a rail or box of vintage, the fact that you are unlikely to find the exact same item elsewhere and that you can often only get it in the shape and size that you find it in so its up to you to play around with it to make it work. Fantastic!

My story with the vintage fair began at the tender age of 18 when I arrived from the bright lights of Worcester (ahem) to the even brighter lights of Leeds to study politics at Leeds Uni. Having been starved of anything resembling vintage unless it was a lucky find in a charity or second hand shop, to say that I got excited when I heard they actually had an affordable vintage FAIR in Leeds would be a bit of an understatement as there may have been quite a lot of squealing involved.

I was young, don’t judge me.

I’d previously earnt most of my pocket money since the age of 16 selling vintage on eBay that Id sourced from in and around Worcester, so realising that the fair was a chance to sell my items in person, I jumped at the opportunity. But unfortunately, the money I made from this wasn’t enough to fund my ever expanding wardrobe and hedonistic student lifestyle so when I heard that Judy was looking for someone to help promote the vintage fairs in Leeds, I went for the job. Fast forward 3 years to when I became a lowly graduate, I was fortunate enough to be taken pity on by the lovely Judy who took me under her wing and fed me Marks and Spencer’s tit bits while I helped manage the promotional side of the fairs and then soon after that, the bookings for the fairs.

So that’s my story, a tale of humble beginnings, 90’s clothes and marks and Spencer’s Gefilte fish balls (they are amazing, I highly recommend them!) This will hopefully not be the last you hear from me as I have a couple of ideas for future blog posts but in the meantime, thanks for reading :)

Sam x

*DISCLAIMER: All weather reports appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real weather is purely coincidental.