April 30, 2013

Looking back at April 2013 (and a huge thank you!)

Good morning, my sweet dears, before launching into a recap of some of the things that have transpired on the blogging front over the past month, I want to take a moment thank you from the bottom of my heart for the outpouring of incredibly caring, thoughtful, touching comments I received on last post about the surgery that I had a couple of weeks ago.

I truly cannot begin to express how very much they each meant to me, as did those I received on sites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, too. Your absolutely lovely well wishes helped to brighten my spirits and help make getting through a challenging time considerably easier to deal with. Again, thank you so much for making this gal feel so much better.

Though I've by no means recouped from my surgery completely (that will be a while still), I feel like I've reached a point in my recovery when I can ease my back into my usual routine of blogging again, and so without further ado...

Given that this is the first post in two weeks, April 2013 certainly wasn't as chocked full of entries as the previous three months of this year have been, but we still got in a number of posts before my short blogging hiatus came into effect and the following stand out as some of my favourites.

Early in the month I explored the power and importance that the sense of smell has in our lives and on our memories, in a post that detailed Ten of my all-time favourite scents. Also in the first week of April, I cordially invited you to Follow me on Instagram (I'm @chronicallyvintage there), in a post that talked about the seriously awesome gift of an iPhone 5 that I received from Tony this past Christmas.

Only one vintage outfit post popped up this month (due to my surgery), but I think you'll agree with me when I say that it was quite noteworthy - as it highlighted what I wore on my first ever day (day) trip to the States. Earlier this year, Tony and I spent a few hours in the charming town of Omak, Washington, and the red, white and blue ensemble (pictured below) that I sported that day was in honour of the fact that, after 28.5 years of life, I finally got a chance to step foot on US soil (I can't wait until the next time!).

On the 10th, I looked back on Four wonderful years of blogging, in celebration of Chronically Vintage's fourth birthday, which took place on April 17th. It has been an incredible four years of sharing my love of all things vintage with you, and I cannot wait to enjoy the next four years - and beyond - as we continue to explore and chat about the endlessly interesting world of mid-century history and fashion.

The very next day I delved into Discussing hats and medical hair loss with Kathleen (from the wonderful blog That's A Pretty Hat), in my first post here that really touched on this intimate subject since my wig unveiling at the start of this year. I love that Kathleen - who is not experiencing hair loss herself - wanted to post about this topic, which affects a great many women at some point (be it temporary of long term) throughout the course of their lives, and have to say thank you again to her for honouring me by asking for some of my thoughts and insight on this topic.

Mid-way through the month, shortly before all went (temporarily) silent on the blogging front here, I rounded up ten images relating to the passion for the colour green that I'm experiencing this year in April's edition of Flickr Favourites. I really am smitten with all things verdant at the moment, and just as this wasn't the first post to mention this topic (I touched on it here, for example), I highly doubt it will be the last before 2013 wraps up either.

Elsewhere in the great, wide interwebs, I was thrilled to recently hear from Sammy of Sammy Davis Vintage that she included Chronically Vintage in her new e-book that's devoted to the The 100 Best Vintage Shops Online, where she super sweetly listed me on page 46 amongst her top sources of vintage style inspiration.

Sammy is a gal with a massive passion for the past (who enjoys writing about and sporting looks from a wide range of twentieth century decades) and a substantial body of knowledge on the subject, stemming in no small part from the fact that she's been selling vintage and writing about the subject of old school fashion for many years now. As such, it was no small honour when she emailed to let me know that she'd included me in her lovely, informative e-book (which you can pick up for just $4.95 here).

As you know, I absolutely, completely adore vintage hats, and my involvement with Kathleen's aforementioned post wasn’t only time I got to discuss this awesome subject over the course of April. Early in the month Katy from the stellar UK blog Vintage Wife interviewed me and a few other (wildly stylish) vintage ladies about our hat collections and some of the reasons why we adore yesteryear chapeaus so very much. If you haven't had a chance to read this delightful post, entitled Top of the Vintage Toppers yet, run, don't walk over to the Vintage Wife, and find out more about how I store, and why I adore, collecting and wearing vintage hats so much.

I won't beat around the bush, April hasn't been the easiest month of all time for me, but the worst is behind us now and instead of focusing on the unpleasantness of serious surgery and how rough I've been feeling ever since, I'm much more interested in looking ahead to May and all that the fifth month of the year holds in store here on the blogging front.

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As a general rule, May is a gorgeous month, sometimes offering up just about the loveliest weather you could ever possibly hope for and a return to spending as much time as possible outdoors, soaking it all up with the gusto of a hungry kitten going to town on a bowl of milk. It's too soon for me to say how much I'll be able to get out and enjoy the glorious sunshine, but at the very least I'll be keeping the blinds open and letting every precious ounce of it stream through the window and onto me as I set about writing May's posts.

In the coming weeks, we'll be reviving the Vintage Fashionista Friday series, reviewing the most recent dress that I've received from eShakti, taking a gander at the history of Cutex nail polish, enjoying a couple of terrific springtime recipes, and holding a giveaway for a newly released page-turner that's set in the 1920s, amongst numerous other posts that I have in the works.

Thank you again deeply, everyone, for your support and care over the past couple of weeks. It never ceases to touch me to my core that I am so blessed to be a part of such a sweet, understanding, wonderful online community. I have a ways to go before I've fully recovered from surgery still, but I'm really looking forward to blogging here again and in savouring each wonderful moment of May that lies ahead.

Have a beautiful last day of April, everyone, and a thoroughly stellar month ahead!

April 15, 2013

Taking a short blogging break due to medical reasons

Good Monday morning greetings, everyone, I hope that you each had a beautiful weekend. As you may recall from my mentioning it in both February and March's month in review posts here, this week - tomorrow, to be exact - I need to go in for surgery again.

{Time to say go say hello to the lovely nurses at Penticton Regional - if only they still sported beautiful mid-century uniforms like this, that should work make going to the hospital a whole lot more fun for a vintage loving lass such as myself! Image source.}

As a result, while I'm recouping, I'm going to be taking the next several days off from blogging. By which I mean, I won't be posting anything new here on Chronically Vintage for a little while.

I've learned over the years that one never knows just how quickly - or slowly, as the case may be - they'll recover from surgery, so I won't set a prescribed number of days until I return here. Assuming things go positively though, I'd imagine that two or so weeks would be about how long it will take before I'm doing well enough to start writing new posts again, but only time will tell.

I don't honestly know how much I'll be online in general throughout the rest of April, but as always will do my best to visit your wonderful blogs and connect with you on social media (where you can find me on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram) as circumstances permit.

{Plenty of rest and healing sleep will be the order of the day for the remainder of the month from tomorrow onward. Image source.}

Thank you each very much for your understanding about this brief medically dictated hiatus. I wholeheartedly look forward to returning to blogging asap, and want you to know that I'll miss all of you a great deal while I'm convalescing.

April 13, 2013

Flickr Favourites: April 13, 2013

{Morny French Fern advertisement ~ totallymystified}

{1920s pond life ~ sandmarg.etsy}

{Jadite ~ Cindy {K}}

{Vera Tschechowa ~ Truus, Bob & Jan too!}

{354/i365 • sweets ~ Krisu-}

{Jessica Ford, January 1958 ~ dovima_is_devine_II}

{Green and black butterfly ~ ruthhallam}

{All images above are from Flickr. To learn more about a specific image, please click on its title to be taken to its respective Flickr page.} 

♥ ♥ ♥

Mid-way through last December, on the fabulous blog The Glamorous Housewife, I first caught wind of the fact that Pantone's color of the year 2013 was going to be emerald green (in this post). Having always loved, but for some (completely unintentional) reason not often owned much green as far as my wardrobe was concerned, this choice on Pantone's part made me a very happy lass indeed.

Already throughout 2012 (long before I knew what Pantone's next color of the year was going to be) I'd been keeping my eyes peeled for my verdant fashions while out thrifting, but few (save pretty much for one lovely chartreuse hued sleeveless top) had come my way. Every years I like to make a conscious effort to add more of certain colours to my wardrobe, and the desire to do so with green has certainly carried on into 2013. Already this year I've added a grass hued crocheted cardigan and an emerald (extra green bonus points there! :) ) v-neck sweater to my closet (both thrifted, natch).

On top of merely just buying new green pieces, I've been making a point of trying to wear more of this fantastic hue, which comprises shades that are both deeply serene and joyfully energetic, and everything in between. As spring (now nearly close to a month old) continues and the last (I hope!) vestiges of the snow vanish from the hills around our town, the world takes on the flush of new life once more and with it comes all manner of green grass, flowers, and trees, each of which is further bolstering my passion for this mellow, inviting hue.

As green is very much on my mind these days, it seemed like a great colour to feature in this month's edition of Flickr favourites, partnered here with shades of yellow (another colours that's I'm making a conscious effort to inject more into my wardrobe), black, white and a smattering of other hues. Green is fun and youthful, revitalizing, harmonious and very becoming on many skin tones (there's scarcely a soul amongst us who can't find at least a shade or two that looks great on them).

The phrase "think green" was one I heard often while growing up in the 1990s. Back then it meant to focus your thoughts on being environmentally friendly, something that is always wise to do. This spring however, when I "think green", my mind races most of all to beautiful images like those in today’s post, verdant vintage garments, and the budding world outside our doors that is once again springing to life.

April 11, 2013

Discussing hats and medical hair loss with Kathleen

On numerous occasions over the past year, I've had the great pleasure of being interviewed and/or asked to share some of my thoughts on certain subjects relating to hats on the terrific blog That's a pretty hat.

Earlier this week, the immensely lovely lady behind this site asked me to do just that another topic pertaining to hats, this time it was one which is certainly of a more personal nature than anything else I'd shared there before, and which I was truly honoured to be asked to speak about: Hats and medical hair loss.

In her post, Kathleen looks at hair loss due to both cancer and other medical related reasons, the latter of which my own story with hair loss falls into. Below are my thoughts, as they appeared in this informative post, which I urge you to visit as well, because you'll find more information (including a video) on this subject there as well.

As I talked about in this post back in January, my own story of hair loss began when I was 14 (14.5 to be exact) and never let up. At first it wasn't too bad, but as the years rolled on and nothing seemed to come forward as the cause or a solution to the problem (I tried mainstream and natural medicines/treatments, consulted scads of doctors, had tons of tests done, etc), my hair continued to fall out. My hair loss is somewhat equally disturbed, but there have always been bigger areas with more hair loss in the front (especially above the temples), sides and crown and these were the ones that I tried to hide (or at least better disguise) with my beloved vintage hats.

My hair loss, while aesthetically irksome, was painless (as in my scalp didn't hurt and I wasn't in any physical discomfort due to my hair falling out) and so this meant that I could wear just about any kind of hat I wanted to. If a person was experiencing scalp pain due to, or in conjunction with, their hair loss, certain types of hats (stiffer materials and tighter styles, for example) might not be ideal.

Depending on the amount of hair loss a woman is experiencing - and how much she wishes to mask the problem - she may find that she can also wear a wide range of hats. If her hair loss is minimal to moderate and/or localized to certain areas of her scalp, most styles should work for her and help conceal the fact that her hair is thinning or balding in one or more areas. If wide spread hair loss is present to a high degree, yet a woman still wishes to keep her real hair (instead of switching to a wig), than sporting larger hats (such as fedoras, cloches, wide brimmed straw and felt hats, large 1960s style pill boxes - even cowboy hats) may be more ideal for her.

One technique I found that helped give the illusion that I had more hair than I actually did was to wear my hair in a simple bun or French roll in the back (with or without a faux bang in the front) and a medium sized hat in the middle of my head. This made it look like my hair was merely tucked into the bun/roll in the back, instead of that it was quite thin all over (and worse in some spots, all of which I usually tried to hide with the hat. Here's an example (pictured below) from last September of when I sported this particular type of hat and hair combo.

I never really felt ashamed of my hair loss - I wasn't doing anything to intentionally cause it and I'd tried diligently to remedy or at least halt the problem, so I wasn't necessarily trying to use hats as a way to hide the issue all the time, but it was sincerely nice to always know that they were their for those days when I wanted to disguise the problem and/or help make it seem like I had more hair than I really did at the time.

I think that when a woman - or really anyone, for that matter - is experiencing hair loss, be it gradual or quite sudden, it feels natural to want to have something on your head (at least some of the time) to help compensate for the amount of hair that you see dwindling away each day when you look in the mirror, and hats can certainly go a very long ways in this regard.

If a person opts (or needs to) become a wig wearer, I can't urge them enough to continue to keep sporting hats. Since I started wearing a wig full time late in 2012, I've sported hats many, many times with my wig. I find that doing so really helps to add an extra element of realness to my wig, making it look more like my own natural hair (I swear, this is one of those secrets to making a wig look lifelike that has escaped the general radar but which can make a world of difference).

You may find that the wig (or wigs) you select change the overall size of your head a little (mine went up about half a hat size, but as my head is fairly small to begin with, thankfully all of my vintage hats still fit), so be mindful of this when you start buying hats after becoming a wig wearer (measure your head with your wig on and use that measurement as your hat size from here on out - or at least for as long as you wear a particular wig).

If you love hats and are experiencing hair loss, I truly hope you'll continue to keep wearing as many of your favourite toppers as possible. They can really help take your mind off of feeling conscious amount your thinning hair, as (depending on their size) they can cover some or even all (think a long 1920s style cloche) of your head and thus, only you, really know just how much, or how little, hair you actually have.

♥ ♥ ♥

Thankfully, hair loss is not something every woman will face in lifetime, but a decent number - whether on a short or long term basis - will at some point (be it due to alopecia, pregnancy, thyroid problems, stress, cancer treatment, or any one of many other possible causes), and I truly hope that those who do will continue to wear hats, if it’s something that they've long enjoyed (or have a newfound desire to try out).

Since becoming a fulltime wig wearer myself last winter, I've taken to wearing a hat (or top of wig) quite a lot of the time when I go (honestly, I'd say with about the same frequency as in my pre-wig days). I adore my vintage hats and could never imagine not including them in my wardrobe due to my hair loss - especially when they'd been such great allies to me over the years as I attempted to conceal the extent to which my locks were thinning.

Regardless of if the hair under them sprouted from my own head or comes in the form of a wig, I'll always top my tresses with a vintage chapeau! (Four examples of which, each from vintage outfit posts over the past few months, you can see below.)

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I think it's fantastic that Kathleen (who is not facing medical hair loss herself) decided to talk about this important topic on her blog, and I really want to say thank you again for giving me the opportunity to chat about some of my own firsthand experience with this subject on your site.

There's nothing to be ashamed about regarding female hair loss, and I really hope that Kathleen's post (and in turn, mine here) will encourage more people to discuss their thoughts on the topic, whether they pertain to hats or not.

April 10, 2013

Reflecting on four wonderful years of blogging

In precisely one week's time, Chronically Vintage will turn four years old. If this blog were a child, it would already be in preschool, talking up a storm, and (I like to imagine) starting to fall in love with vintage fashion, just like it's dear old mom.

{This was the very first image that appeared in my inaugural post here on Chronically Vintage. Almost four years later, it seems more than fitting that it should appear once more. Image source.}

It's fair to say that, while of course a blog is wildly different from a living, breathing child in many ways, both do share some parallels such as that they often require a good amount of our time, focus, thought, and (of course) love.

In the time since beginning this blog on a nippy March day back in 2009, more than 880 blog posts have appeared here. That's a rather hefty number when you stop and think about it, and I'm the first to admit, I'm already eager to crack into the four figure range (with I predict will happen at some point around the end of this year or start of the next, if my current posting rate continues along much the same path it's been on since early 2012).

Through Chronically Vintage was not my first blog (nor is it the only one I run these days, though it is by far the one which I devote the most time and attention to), I can say, without a shadow of a doubt, that it is the blog that I have poured the greatest degree of time and effort into. Though there have been times over the years, when for various reasons (chiefly my health), blogging proved to be something of a challenge for me, there was never a moment in all that time when, in my heart of hearts, I didn't want to blog, to write, to share my unending passion for the past with all of you.

Nor have I ever encountered writer's block, never completely lost my mojo (anytime I felt it waning, I called on the seven tips in this article to help bolster it again), and never run out of ideas to write about here.

The longer I've blogged, the easier and more enjoyable it has become. Long gone are the days of being the new kid on the block, newbie jitters and uncertainties, or of the process of finding my vintage blogging voice. I believe in change and evolution and try never to let this blog fall into a pattern of too much routine (there's a reason the "same old, same old" is called as such!), but I can safely say that, four years on, I've developed a set of techniques, habits, and topics that I turn to time and time again to help ensure that this blog is both what I want it to be, and what I believe my readers will enjoy.

I have zero qualms with admitting that I blog, first and foremost for myself. This site isn't my whole livelihood (though it certainly is a part), but that doesn't mean I don't treat it as though it were, nor that I ever slack off on the job. Whether I'm doing research for a post, writing, replying to comments, visiting and commenting on other blogs, connecting with Chronically Vintage fans through social media, or discussing vintage blogging with someone in person, my site and the general subject of history are always at the forefront of my mind.

Whatever I experience, see, purchase, learn about, or create becomes potential inspiration for a blog post. I love my blog and I adore blogging. If I didn't, I don't imagine that I'd be here writing this post today. You have to love something with all your heart to devote countless hours to it each year, to think about it often as you're drifting off to sleep and when you awake refreshed in the morning.

The longer you blog, the more your blog takes on a life and personality of your own. It becomes a tome of your writing and/or photographs, an autobiography of (at least parts of) your existence, a way to connect with like minded individuals, and outlet for your thoughts and emotions, a trusted friend, and a defining part of who you are.

When I started this blog I settled on the name (Chronically Vintage) that I did because for years already at that point I'd been battling a series of severe chronic illnesses and often felt as though they (my health problems) were defining who I was and taking over my life. I wanted, if only for an hour a day, to take back part of my life and instead define myself on my own terms, by something which had always been near and dear to my heart.

I didn't set out with definitive goals when I began blogging, I just knew that I needed, a very basal level to write about something that brought me unending joy and which I simply could not get enough of: vintage.

Four years on, I'm delighted to say that, right from the get-go, this blog more than lived up my hope that it would provide me a creative outlet that was (for the most part) a million miles away from my health issues.

Over the past four years scores upon scores of other terrific benefits, opportunities, challenges, accomplishments, and new friendships have arise from blogging as well. I've grown as a writer, a photographer, vintage lover, and an overall person. I'm not who I was when this blog began and I adore that fact. When I look back at the five, seven, ten (and so on, I sincerely hope!) year mark, I won't be quite the same then, and that fact makes me happy. Just as I always want to ensure that my site grows and evolves, so too do I hope that these things ring true for me on a personal level.

Without a doubt, one of the most important and meaningful elements of this blog's existence has, from day one, been all of my readers and online friends. To say that I adore you more than Fred Astaire loved his tap shoes would be a serious understatement. Always there to share in the good, the bad, and everything in between, to encourage and inspire, and to motivate me when my spirit was down, you have been - and will always be - and integral part of this blog's universe.

Thank you one and all four four incredible years of sharing in the history, fashion, and lifestyle of the past. I cannot wait to see what the future holds in store here, and wholeheartedly look forward to enjoying every last awesome moment of it with all of you!

April 8, 2013

A Canadian in Omak, Washington

Outfit details

All hair flowers: Arden
White rose stud earrings: Claire's
Red shrug: Fairweather
1980s does 1940s Karin Stevens novelty print dress: eBay
White skinny belt: eBay
Cute vintage wreath brooch: eBay
Bangle bracelets: Assorted sources
Red vintage purse: etsy seller I Love Vintage Stuff
Nude and black seamed stockings: eBay
Black pumps: Payless
Lip colour: MAC Russian Red

Photography by Antonio Cangiano

Travel, even relatively short distances, is extremely challenging for me due to many of my chronic health problems. It bodes well for me then that I'm a natural homebody in a lot of ways. However, I've also always had a spirit of wanderlust and this duality, I believe, will forever exist in my soul. Much as I'd love to take to the open road on a lark whenever the urge strikes, such is, point blank, absolutely out of the question most of the time.

Every now and then, one in a very blue moon, a day comes along though where I sense that in the moment I'll be able to handle a little bit of driving. Kelowna, an hour away, or Osoyoos (also about an hour away) in the opposite direction, is usually the limit of what I'll push myself to, but occasionally I’ll go a little further still. I know full well that I'll pay for this decision with weeks of being bedridden and racked with flare-ups afterwards, but sometimes that's ok. My health can have nearly full reign of my life most of the time, but once in a while I get to still have fun and go on a little adventure, too.

Hard as it may be to believe (considering that I've often lived an hour or less from the border), I went the first twenty-eight and a half years of my life without ever visiting the US. One day a few weeks ago (right around the start of February), sensing that I could probably handle a quick road trip that day, Tony and I decided it was high time we hightailed it to good old US of A.

He - of Italian birth and upbringing - had already been to the States before a couple of times with my parents, but again, never once in my life had I stepped foot below the 49th. Doing so was something I'd longed to accomplish for ages, so on a very chilly weekend day we set out for America. After dealing with US customs (who wanted to check our car for some unknown reason and then made us fill out some pretty standard forms before letting us continue on our way), we cruised over the border and into Washington state.

We headed to the town of Omak with the purpose of grocery shopping (oh, the marvelous array of gluten-free foods that exist in US stores that we don't have here in Canada) and did just that. The whole day was bitingly cold and very, very overcast, but before night fell completely, we quickly grabbed a few shots on (what I'd call) the main stress in Omak, standing in front of a great old vintage movie theater.

The decision to go to the States was made that very morning (that's how my health rolls - advance plans, out, on the fly, in!) and as soon as it was, I knew that I wanted to sport a red, white and blue vintage outfit in honour of the US flag and my first time on American soil.

A few mad dash outfit changes later (cue closet that looks like a tornado hit it!), and this ensemble is what I settled on. Other than the fact that my arms were a touch nippy (I had white gloves in my purse, but forgot to slip them on before we took these snaps) when I wasn't wearing my jacket (not pictured), this was a great choice of outfit for the day (so comfy - a must for any kind of travel) and one which, I was touched to receive plenty of compliments on from folks on both sides of the border (including one of the female US customs agents we were dealing with on our way to the States).

Our whole trip was quick - about five hours spent in the US - but a total blast. Between the epically big Wal-Mart, seeing various US business in person for the first time (Bank of America, Rite Aid, Prince's, etc), and simply spending time in a brand-new-to-me country, it was one of the best days I've had in years.

Trunk loaded with delicious US foods (why, oh why, aren't all the Jet-Puffed marshmallow varieties - such as pumpkin pie, chocolate, coconut, and gingerbread - that you have there available in Canada, too?), photos snapped, and memories made, as a dense fog washed over the road, we carefully (we honestly could not see more than a few feet in front of us) made our way home, sailing over the Canadian border sans any issues.

As I knew would be the case, this delightful dalliance with America left me wrecked, health wise, for a few weeks afterwards, but I don't regret the choice to go one iota. I can now say that I've been to the States for the first time - and what I'm sure will not be the last - time, and that's worth feeling extra crummy for a while. Big time.

Now...where'd I put that bag of pumpkin pie marshmallows? :)

April 6, 2013

Ten of my all-time favorite scents

Though one could very easily think so based on its title, this post is not about the perfumes and colognes that I adore most - though such a post may appear here one day. No, instead today on this soft and beautiful April morning, my mind is filled with thoughts of the smells of the budding season, and by extension of pleasing odours that have long - if not forever - been held dear to my heart.

With spring's return comes an almost overwhelming array of resplendent, diverse, emotion provoking scents. Verdant grass, damp with rain and early morning dew once more; the earliest new crop produce – crisp asparagus, tender lettuce leaves, the teeniest of strawberries and many more are beginning to line the grocer's shelves again; flowers long hidden under a blanket of ice and snow burst forth with equal measures of caution and enthusiasm, this is their time to shine and to fill the air with the nature's founding perfume.

It is often said that scent is the strongest of the senses we posses, and I am not one to argue with that point. Each sense can be remarkably power, but there is something tremendous amount scent that lends it the ability to transport us instantly through time and space, to reconnect with moments long gone and to make memories ever bit as powerful in the moment. Scent can offend or delight, please, entice, sooth, stir, and uplift the soul.

Not all smells are pleasant, and that perhaps is why we adore those that are all the more, why it takes but one whiff a certain small to reminds of things as diverse as our grandmother's dressing table, our first kiss, the last time we saw a cherished friend, a beach thousands of miles away, Christmastime, a new baby, and a universe's worth of other priceless memories and experiences.

I have been stopped dead in my tracks by a familiar scent, moved to tear by the beauty of certain smell, reminded of times long gone and future events I dream of bringing to life. Smells have danced through my mind with the fervor of a tango and the tranquility of waves lapsing at the sand. They have haunted and comforted me, left impressions that no amount of time could erase, and I could scarcely fathom an existence without the insight, experience and joy that scents have granted me throughout the course of my life.

As spring ushers in its symphony of smells - speaking of earth and rain, newborn animals and a renewal of the perpetual order of life as seen through the eyes of the seasons - I thought this first Saturday in April would be a wonderful time to share with you a list of ten of my absolute favourite scents, each accompanied by a beautiful vintage or modern, timeless image depicting said smells.

Not all of these scents tie directly to spring, but again, as this powerful human sense is rekindled with springs's return, it seems a most fitting and lovely time of the year to delve into this subject.

{Line-dried linens}

Vintage 1950s Tite-rope clothesline ad, vintage laundry

{The Pacific rain forest}

West coast of Vancouver Island Pacific Rainforest (image by eerror on Flickr)

{Meat grilling on the barbeque}

Vintage 1950s couple grilling meat on a barbeque


{Freshly cut grass}

Vintage Reo lawnmower ad from 1950, mowing the lawn

{Kitten and puppy dog fur}

Vintage Farm Babies 1940s children's book, puppies, kitties, bunnies

{Old books}

Edwardian toasts books, antique vintage books


Beautiful photo of purple lilacs from Flickr user Miss M Schneiderhead

{Freshly baked chocolate chip cookies}

Vintage 1950s Hershey's chocolate chip ad

{Smoke from a campfire}

Vintage 1930s community campfire

{Classic Coppertone suntan lotion}

1962 Coppertone Suntan Lotion ad, vintage summer

{All images above are from Flickr. To learn more about a specific image, please click on it to be taken to its respective Flickr page.}

There are hundreds, if not thousands of scents that I enjoy, cherish, love being surprised by, and will forever delight in experiencing, just as I'm sure there are for most of you as well.

This list is not a "top ten", nor is it of my absolute ten most favourite. I really don't know if I could create such a list, there are simply too many magnificent smells on this vast and wondrous earth of ours to call out such a small number and tag them as my most favourite. No, what these ten odours hold in common is that I have loved them throughout my whole life (or very nearly thereabout), and thus they are all-time favourites.

What is pleasing to the nose of one person is not always so to another, but I'd venture to guess that amongst this list, you'll find one or more smells that you delight in as well. Which of these do your adore as well, and what others would make it on to your own such roundup of cherished scents?

I hope that as we glide ever further though spring, you take the time to indulge in your most beloved scents. Stop not only to smell the roses, but also the just-mowed grass, the new season produce, the cherry blossoms, and everything else you can lay your nose on in the garden.

April 4, 2013

Follow me on Instagram

This past Christmas Tony gave me one of the most fantastic presents I've ever received: an iPhone 5. Not only was this wildly generous, it was also massively unexpected, because I still had about 27 months left to go at the time on the contract on my previous cell phone, which meant that in addition to getting me an iPhone, he had to buy out the remainder of my old cell's contract plan.

Like many people, I'd been yearning for an iPhone for quite some time, but prior to Christmas, believed that it would be some 27 months before getting one ever became a reality. I have zero qualms with admitting that a big part of the reason why I wanted an iPhone was for it's great (as far as cell phones go) camera.

I have a beloved Canon DSLR that I've use for both my work and many of the photos I take of things in my daily life, but there are time - many times - when it can be more practical and/or handier to simply slip your cell phone into your purse or pocket and use it as your go-to (or secondary) camera when out and about (or trying to capture a very camera shy cat - yes, Miss Stella, I'm talking about you - doing something adorable at home).

Following on the heels of wanting an iPhone for it's terrific photography capabilities, I've been hankering to join, and share pictures on, Instagram for ages now. Blogger after wonderful blogger that I follow seemed to already be on Instagram, and I'll admit, I was feeling a touch left out. As such, once my feet came back down to the ground again after receiving my new iPhone (my first ever, I should mention) last December, pretty much the first thing that I did was to join Instagram.

In the months since then, I've followed many of the aforementioned bloggers there, and have been so touched by all of those folks who have already followed me. I really want to connect with more of you there, so today I'm formally inviting you to follow me on Instagram.

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Please let me know if you do in the comments (with your Instagram handle - I'm @chronicallyvintage) so that I can be sure to follow you back.

Though I still very much feel like I have a ton to learn about iphoneography, I'm educating myself more on this topic every day and likewise taking snaps as often as possible. My favourites of which end up on my Instagram feed, where you'll see photos of everything from Annie and Stella to me in vintage outfits, thrifted treasures to the beautiful landscapes that surrounds us here in British Columbia.

I cannot thank Tony enough for giving me my first iPhone, which in turn allowed me to finally join Instagram and connect with all of you there at long last. Best Christmas gift EVER!!! :)

April 3, 2013

Pink Ice Phone giveaway winner

Two weeks saw the season's first giveaway here on Chronically Vintage (actually, the first giveaway of 2013, come to think of) in which an adorable retro inspired Pink Ice Phone was offered up to one lucky reader.

The giveaway wrapped up on March 29th (between the Easter weekend, my mom's birthday, Annie, and a mysterious stomach bug that struck me late this past Sunday night, I'm a bit behind on getting this post out, my sincere apologies there), I'm delighted to announce here today that the winning comment - selected using a random number generator - was number six.

Happiest congrats to Lisa of Butterflies and Daisies Vintage!!! I'm pleased as punch for you, dear gal. Please email me anytime with your mailing address details so that I can pass them on to the fine folks at Mobile Fun, who will be sending out your cute pink Ice Phone.

Thank you very much to everyone who took part in this fun giveaway! I have two more giveaways for other items in the works for later on in the spring/early summer, so if you didn't win this one, fear not, you might just be the lucky winner next time around.