July 11, 2014

Under the sea vintage fashion fun

Vintage Fashionista Friday blog graphic for Chronically Vintage photo VintagefashionistaChronicallyVintag.png

{Whether your hair is as long as a mermaid’s or considerably shorter, there isn't a head around that wouldn't look sensational with this elegantly gorgeous handmade seashell and starfish comb nestled against it. $35.00 from Be Something New.}

{If ever there was an aptly named scent to wear to the beach or anyplace during the summer, this lovely bottle of Mermaid Kiss handmade perfume is it. $9.25 for a 15ml bottle from Butter Toki.}

{If you're not in the mood for a full on ocean inspired look, or if you want to jazz your mermaid-worthy outfit up even further, why not pick up these beautiful vintage lucite clip-on earrings featuring oodles of cute little seashells and metallic confetti? $18.00 from SoCal Jewelry Box.}

{Aren't these handmade capiz shell, starfish, and Swarovski crystal earrings absolutely breathtaking? I could see them working wonders with everything from vintage tropical print playsuits to a flowing, breezy white dress for a relaxed beach wedding. Swoon!!! $25.00 from Lovelorn Siren.}

{Vintage frocks really don't come any more shimmery, alluring, or gorgeous than this stunning 1960s metallic blue tinsel wiggle dress. Love. Epically. Fits up to a 36" bust/28" waist. $125.00 from (fellow B.C. Etsian) True Value Vintage.}

{Whether they're the real deal plucked from the sea or the sort created on land in factory, there's no denying the truly timeless appeal of pearl jewelry. This strikingly beautiful 1940s hand knotted faux pearl necklace features a 23.5 inch strand of solid, good quality glass pearls in a beguilingly lovely shade of rose gold meets brown gold meets champagne that would look especially incredible against summertime tanned skin. $28.00 from Chronically Vintage on Etsy.}

{Every time I go to the Vancouver Aquarium (as we did on our recent travels to that fine city), I spend a good long while gazing at the resident mighty fire hued Giant Pacific Octopus. There is, to my mind, something both scary and appealing awesome about these powerful eight-armed aquatic creatures and its easy to see why they've long held court over much of the ocean floor. Far from frightening, this wonderful block of handmade vegan soap featuring one of these hefty octopi is just the ticket to get your skin looking, if you'll forgive a relevant maritime pun, shipshape in no time! $9.00 for a 4 ounce bar of soap from The Charming Frog.}

{Raffia and summertime go together like tropical drinks and the beach. Lightweight, breathable, and comfy, it's a classic natural material that makes for the ideal warm weather shoe and these great 1960s woven raffia flats are no exception. Fits a ladies size 6.5 foot. $25.00 from Luckiest Duck 1.}

{Today's final item entry isn't for your wardrobe, but instead for your walls! I discovered these fabulous hand painted underwater themed vintage reproduction chalkware sets a few months ago and have been thoroughly smitten ever since. They look the kitschy mid-century part to a tee, are very reasonably priced, and just as cute as cute can possibly be! $40.00 for a three-piece set of chalkware mermaids from HilltopCast.}

♥ ♥ ♥

Before I delve further into today's post, I want to take a moment to thank absolutely everyone who has showered me with happy 30th birthday wishes this week. Yesterday was fun filled, beautiful, inspiring and bursting with all those special elements that one hopes for when the anniversary of their birth rolls around. My celebrate was truly made all the more sweet and memorable thanks to your splendidly lovely wishes. Thank you, one and all!

I'm not the only thing getting older these days. I recently read that 2014 is the 25th anniversary of Disney's endlessly classic take on The Little Mermaid and it stopped me right in my tracks. No way! I thought to myself, feeling like I could remember watching it, on VHS, naturally, for the first time as though it were yesterday. And yet, it only took a couple more seconds of hopping down memory lane to realize that, by Jove, yes, it really had been that long, because I can clearly recall having a Little Mermaid theme for either my sixth or seventh birthday.

As a child, growing up in a very dysfunctional, oppressive, challenging home setting, I instantly felt like I could relate to Ariel and her desire to break away from her tyrannical father's rule and discover a world of her own where she could finally experience the freedom she deeply, powerfully longed for. Though I wasn't born with a tail and I never forgot what the word "burn" was, I found so many parallels between her life and my own plight that Ariel became something of a personal mascot and certainly a major source of inspiration for me all through my early childhood years.

{A copy of the exact same Disney Little Mermaid poster that hung on my bedroom wall for a few years of my youth, reminding and quietly helping to encourage me each time I looked at it to explore my own proverbial "shore above" and to take my freedom into my own hands. Image source.}

Much like Disney's most famous mermaid, I too eventually found both my freedom and my wonderful prince charming. I developed my own legs of a different sort and taught myself how to stand on them, even in the face of the harshest adversities. While I'm certainly no longer a child anymore, I still love Ariel and her delightful cast of underwater friends all the same and can sing, to this day, all of the songs in that movie by heart.

Inspired by my passion for and personal relationship with this film, in the midst of one of (if not "the", depending on whereabouts you live) hottest months of the year, I knew that I wanted this month's edition of Vintage Fashionista Friday to have a charmingly fantastic mermaid theme to it.

July, the sea, cool waters and the joy that imagining a world in which mermaids really did exist makes for a seriously appealing combination and one that will continue appeal to me whether I'm five, thirty, fifty or a hundred years old! :)


Hurry, my dears, and take advantage of the awesome 25% off sale that is still underway on everything in my Etsy shop. The sale ends tomorrow and is the only one I have planned for the summer, so now is the time to save big! 


  1. Oooh, that shimmery dress and that second pair of earrings are amazing!!

  2. I love everything thing about this post... except for how very old you've made me feel! The Little Mermaid is 25, how can that be?! Like you, I vividly remember watching for the first time (and on a loop, thereafter), referring to forks and dinglehoppers, and singing the songs while swimming in the pool.

    Living by the sea always makes me want to add more ocean inspired pieces to my wardrobe, and now, thinking of Ariel, I'm wanting to grow my hair out, purchase that gorgeous hair comb and go lounge on the beach in high mermaid style!

    Though I refuse to believe you've turned the big 3-0, I hope you had a wonderful birthday! Best wishes for a fabulous year.

  3. I have always loved mermaids, was convinced I was one when I was a little girl, and perhaps really was one in a previous life. I love these mermaid-inspired pieces, particularly the lucite clip-ons. Along with mermaids, I've always been fascinated by marine life and films and books about underwater adventures. Always one for a theme, I definitely try to channel mermaids when I don my pearls, abalone shell earrings, and mother of pearl jewelry. It's such fun to adopt a persona and feel transported through fashion!

    Thanks too for sharing some of your journey and how you related to and sought refuge in The Little Mermaid. The best stories are the ones that allow us to do that. :-)

    <3 Liz

  4. I LOVE The Little Mermaid!! I can remember having everything Little Mermaid when I was young (25 years this year?! Where does the time go...) and vividly remember sitting in a group on the floor of my friends house for her Little Mermaid themed birthday party (we all dressed like mermaids to go) and singing to every song as we looked up to the TV watching the movie after we ate cake.

    I'm still a big TLM fan, even as an adult. There is a professional musical theatre company here in Winnipeg called Rainbow Stage and they are producing the Canadian premier of the Broadway version of The Little Mermaid in August!! EEEEEEE!!! I'm totally geeking out about it.
    I've already bought my tickets. Many of my colleagues are in the show and I'm elated to see them perform in it.

    Glad to hear you had a wonderful birthday. :)

  5. such a sweet connection to the film and lovely mermaid inspired style selections too
    retro rover

  6. I love pearls, too pretty <3 Dear gal, i hope you had a wonderful birthday, full of happiness!! ^^
    Have a great weekend <3 xxx


  7. what a gorgeous theme! you´r inspiring me to channel my inner mermaid for tomorrows outfit :-)

  8. What wonderful gems you selected! Under the sea is such a great idea!

  9. I just adore this post! I honestly have not seen the disney version all the way through, but I do plan to at some point. Mermaids are after all one of my favourite mythological creatures. I love the vintage spin you put on it. This is just so girly and fun! I am glad you had a nice birthday :)

  10. I'm glad that "Little Mermaid" gave you something to consider and hope for as you grew up (and much as I like Hans Christian Andersen's original ending, Disney's take worked for me, too!). It's funny—so many people hate and castigate Disney, and surely the films have their issues, but so many girls, like yourself, have found something to aspire to in their films, and it's not always the snotty "princess" attitude, thank goodness. Though I wish there were more male characters for little boys, the movies do show that with persistence we can overcome a lot of obstacles while occasionally even giving us some character development (for instance, IIRC, Ariel tearfully and lovingly kissing her father goodbye from the ship's deck after he'd given her what she so desired; she realized he'd always deeply loved her and wished to protect her, even if that meant painfully restricting her). I think "Brave" is another look at the same theme, in a way.

    Also, to my mind, there's much to be said for the fantasy element; it can be an introduction to the world of the classical liberal arts, without which our world would be so cold.

    So many pretty finds, and a unique take on the nautical theme that seems to roll around every summer (as the granddaughter of a sailor, I do NOT mind this)—it's fanciful and sweet, reminding us of the bounty of the sea.

    Also: That octopus soap would also be a superb gift for any Detroit Red Wings fan. I may have to pick up a few bars to give to family for the start of the season this fall! That hardly fits in with the theme here, but I could not help thinking that. ;) Have a great weekend! I hope you find more birthday fun.

  11. Your post is gorgeous, interesting and fun as always! :)

  12. The mermaid brooches <3 I love them! I too empathized with Ariel, but for different reasons. At 16, my parents felt I was too young to have a boyfriend. I, obviously felt otherwise - a bit like Ariel!

  13. Despite the winter here, I have actually been to the beach about 3 times in the last 2 weeks, as I stayed with a friend at Manly and my in-laws at Maroubra. Even warmly dressed it was lovely to smell the sea air, walk on the sand and watch the brave surfers and scuba-divers in action. So I'm feeling surprisingly drawn to this under-the-sea theme!

    Also, I do love The Little Mermaid! I have memories of watching it as a child too. I haven't seen it in some years, but the songs are on my regular playlist! They are some of the best, in my opinion.

  14. I think I would feel like a mermaid if I wore that gorgeous blue dress and the lucite with shells earrings. Such a fun outfit. I am quite shocked to find that The Little Mermaid is 25. I remember going to see it at the cinema.

  15. That necklace!!! It reminds me of the one I wore on my wedding day. 💕


  16. The Little Mermaid is my favourite Disney film! Gosh that makes me feel old that it's turning 25! I love your picks, as usual, you have impeccable taste. The sparkly blue dress is my favourite, and I'd love to wear it with a spritz of the mermaid kisses x

    1. Isn't that dress mind blowingly fabulous? I didn't have the wiggle room in my budget for it this summer or else, as it's my size, it would have been coming home with me for sure. I really want to add a sparkle covered or lame frock (or both!) to my wardrobe and this would have fit the bill sublimely.

      Thank you deeply for your immensely lovely compliment. It made my day and then some!

      Big hugs & happy weekend wishes,
      ♥ Jessica

  17. The seashell and starfish comb is amazing. I must make something like that!

  18. it's great that you can incorporate some of your own shop items into these posts. i think that blue shimmer dress is perfect for a mermaid fin inspired look.