April 19, 2015

A big top's worth of vintage circus themed fashion fun


Before we delve into today's post, I wanted to let you all know that decided to start either putting the graphic headers for reoccurring posts like this further down in the posts themselves or removing them all together. The reason for this is that I have things set up so as to automatically post an update on Facebook and Twitter when a new blog post appears here and the app that does that takes the first image that it sees on the page for the image it then displays on Facebook.

As such, my FB followers just see the same post header time and time again whenever a new post in a series like Vintage Fashionista Friday (or Saturday Snapshots, 25 Vintage Deals Under $100, Flickr Favourites, etc) appears, not an image specific to the topic at the post of the heart itself. I want folks to see that kind of image, so again, I'll be scaling back or just getting rid of, in some cases, such post headers from here on out in most cases.



Now, on with the show! :)



{Inject a serious hit of colour and lively movement into your look with this delightful pair of big vintage beaded cha-cha clip-on earrings in a rainbow of punchy hues, that instantly make me think of bunches of balloons being sold at a circus or carnival. $18.00 from Chronically Vintage on Etsy.}




{Whether you call it cotton candy, fairy floss, or candy floss, there's no denying that this sublimely saccharine treat goes hand-in-hand with the circus. Enjoy the scent of this sweet treat sans calories anytime when you pamper your lips with this charmingly lovely handmade cotton candy lip balm. $4.00 for a 0.15 oz tube from Crimson Hill.}




{Between the swirling pattern and juggler's balls worthy shape of the round glass beads in this marvelously lovely mid-century vintage necklace, it's easy to see why it would suit a circus themed outfit or day spent with The Greatest Show On Earth especially well. $25.00 from Chronically Vintage on Etsy.}




{You would be thoroughly hard pressed to find a more perfect garment to wear to the circus, a circus themed party or any kind of fun event (birthdays very much included) than this awesome 1950s short sleeve balloon and clown print short sleeve novelty print dress. Fits up to a 38.5" bust/33.5" waist. $95.00 from By Cin, By Hand.}




{When one thinks of animals and the circus, seals are often amongst the first that spring to mind. With their adorable faces and penchant for doing tricks, they suit the big top well, just as they do all kinds of delightful vintage and modern outfits alike. Why not let a trained seal of the jewelry variety steal the show with any outfit care of this darling faux pearl and gold tone mid-century vintage novelty brooch? $10.00 from Chronically Vintage on Etsy.}




{What would a circus be without a magician and where would that magician be without their darling white bunny tucked away in a top hat? Celebrate one of the circus's most iconic critters with this beautiful, vintage-y looking handmade brass and and shrink plastic bracelet. $45.00 from Mama's Little Babies.}




{Use it as a clutch, a makeup page, a storage pouch, a small toiletries bag when you travel, to stash receipts in - you name it, just make sure you put this cuter than cute fabric pouch, with its vintage-esque looking circus print fabric, to work. It's too adorable not to see tons of use! $10.00 from Ashley Rose EGL.}




{Though they may have originally been intended for children, there's no reason circus fans of all ages couldn't use these wonderfully whimsical, absolutely darling vintage hankies. $18.00 for a three-piece set in its original box from Oliver's Forest.}




{From their jubilant colour palette to their charming polka dots to their beautiful red rose - which can't help but remind one, in a circus context, of the water squirting faux blooms that clowns are keen on wearing on their lapels, this gorgeous pair of vintage inspired peep toe platform heels is sure to turn more heads than a fast flying trapeze artist! Available in modern ladies sizes 7 to 9 (at the time of writing) from Blue Velvet Vintage.}



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

♥ ♥ ♥



You know, I can't help but feel like there's a three ring circus joke or pun that could have worked for today's title, I but I couldn't think of one that had a positive connotation to this commonly used expression, so I skipped it and went for something more descriptive instead.

As the weather continues to warm up and the last vestiges of winter melt away, my mind turns instantly to both plans for this season and to memories of past springs and summers alike. In the case of the later, vivid recollections of afternoons spent under the big top as a youngster instantly come rushing back.

Though I must state for the record that I do not as an adult usually support circuses involving animals (their handing and care often being a million miles away from as ethical or human as I'm personally comfortable with), and haven't attended one in nearly two decades, as a child when the annual traveling circus came to town - usually around this time of the year - I did certainly watch the acts with the same wide-eyed wonder that millions other children have for hundreds of years now.

No matter your stance on circuses involving animals, I think that we can all agree that the iconic images and scenes that they present and can lend to vintage clothing is well worth cheering about. From elephants to trained seals, clowns (okay, not everyone's favourite, but cute smiling ones usually aren't very menacing unless you have coulrophobia) to top hat adorned ring masters, circus themed items and fashions are fun and nostalgic at the same time - always a winning combo for vintage lovers like us.

Circus related outfits, parties, and dinners can all be a blast and though they are especially well suited to the younger crowd, there's no reason why us "kids at heart" can't get in on the merriment as well (and to that end, I've seen a few circus themed weddings that have been shared online before and they're always a blast, too). I can't say as though I own a ton of circus themed fashions or accessories, but one can easily appropriate various items to have them fit this bill.

From the aforementioned top hats (and tails) to feathers, assorted animal themed items (think horses, dogs, seals, elephants, monkeys, rabbits, lions, and tigers in particular), sequins and ruffles like a trapeze artist or acrobat might wear, and of course, red and white stripes like the famous big top tents themselves, it may be easy to raid your closet right now for numerous pieces that channel a fun circus theme.

Spring is a lighthearted, feel good season that calls for more fun than you can shake a magician's wand at, so why not make like this week's stylish Vintage Fashionista and put together a circus inspired ensemble this year, no matter if you're headed down to the big top or not. It's a happy theme for any outfit that is sure to make you, and all who see your look, smile wider than a chipper clown! :)

28 comments:

  1. I had those hankies as a kid! My grandma gave them to me!! I love that bracelet too

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  2. I love your circus themed descriptions for each item :)
    And of course I'm in love with the shoes.
    xxxx

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  3. I understand fully how you feel Jessica. We are still waiting for fall and winter to come down under and it looks like summer is not letting go lol.
    Love these jewellery pieces! Fabulous, truly funky and bursting with passion!
    http://inkandlacedesigns.blogspot.com.au/

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  4. This is such a gorgeous collection, Jessica- love the blue dress! xx

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  5. I particularly like that blue balloon dress, though I admit I find clowns more scary than appealing! I heartily agree about the whole circus+animals=no thing, I have stopped attending Colorado's Renaissance festival for this same reason, as they have Elephant rides (awful cramped small pen where they walk in a circle all day) and a big cat show by a man who has past animal rights law violations. Icky, just ick! Anyway, in better circus related ideas, you must read the book The Night Circus if you haven't already! It is so magical!

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  6. Oh, the balloon earrings, the red candy necklace, and the cotton candy lipbalms. It is my favourite lip balm flavour, plus marsh mellows, it is such a guilt free treat to have on your lips, and I always buy them from Etsy, since we don't have such fancy flavours in Danish shops. The red shoes are fabulous, they went right on my wish list. Wishing you a lovely day, dear. I've been down with a cold all weekend, so I am home today taking it easy. :)

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  7. I enjoyed the circus theme, I have very happy memories of going to the circus as a child and being amazed by the acrobats and the horses. I often look out for circus themed items as I work in a haberdashery called Ribbon Circus and my friends who own it like a bit of vintage circus stuff. In fact, yesterday we were discussing the possibility of knitting some sort of ring master's coat and working out how it could be done!

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  8. Such fun items! I don't like circuses, one of my earliest memories is of being taken out of a circus because I was crying. I think it was the popping of the balloons, as I had very sensitive ears as a baby/toddler xx

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  9. I never know how you find all of these fabulous things - you out-do me in your knowledge of where to buy amazing things on the internet! Those shoes at the end are rather fabulous... Hope you have a lovely week! CC x

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  10. All the colors!
    The statement given above is what forst came to my mind. And, it's nothing strange, since that indeed is what Spring "brings to the table", right?! That is why we love it and long for it. That POP of amazing colors, the joy they bring, the amazement that they wake in our minds... do you feel like singing? :)

    Marija

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  11. jessica! did you plant some spyware in my system? ;-)
    R. and i saw a circus show on saturday!!!!! i teeny tiny family circus, 4 adults and 3 kids - 2, 9, 12 years old. and some ponies, 2 goats and a dromedar. it was really magic and heartwarming. and sooo much fun!!!
    and fun are the items you show here! perfect for a sunny spring sunday with or without a circus in town :-)
    <3 <3 <3

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  12. I love how you managed to present this theme: Circus.
    I think your choices were splendid! The balloon earrings are a true masterpiece, I had never seen anything like them. The bunny bracelet is also a great piece.
    Like you, I too attended circuses while growing up- never once after I was coherent enough to understand what was going on there- where I live they're trying to pass a law that forbids any circuses that have performances that include animals...

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  13. i agree, no matter the stance on the circus it certainly is enjoyable to dream in vivid colors and excitement. To me, there seems to be something so romantically vintage and yesteryear about the circus in general, though personally i have never attended one.

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  14. I'm not a fan of using animals in circus acts either but the circus is like candy for the eye with all its marvellous colours.
    Kids books with circus trains where the giraffe's head is sticking out, lions in cage cars and brightly coloured signs were always a draw for me and still is if I can find them while thrifting.

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  15. Fabulous picks! I haven't been to the circus in a long time either, but I love watching videos from Cirque de Soliel (I've horribly misspelled that, I'm sure) and other things like that. It's amazing the sort of things people can do with their own bodies, without having to exploit animals for entertainment. Contortionists, sword swallowers, fire eaters, tightrope walkers and trapeze artists - it's all just as amazing.
    I love the theme and the choices you made to go along with it, very fun. Those earrings are just divine!

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  16. awwww! Such a fun collection of goodies! [ ty!!! : ) ]

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  17. I love ❤️ Just love the bunny bracelet! Xx ChristyByTheSea

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    1. Isn't it magnificently cute with just the right hit of vintage-ness to it? All of that woman's creations are sensational. I don't know her personally, but I've been an admirer for a while now and loved that this post gave me a chance to share one of her pieces here.

      Tons of hugs,
      ♥ Jessica

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  18. Oh, the pop of colors made me instantly happy this early morning!
    I am not a big fan of the circus (nor (smiling) clowns for that matter), but this post I did love! Those colorful clip-ons are a great accessory to have for the summer to come!

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    1. That's great to hear! Anytime I brighten someone's day with one of my posts, my heart is officially warmed. Those earrings really are marvelous! They're vibrant, fun, kitschy and cool, but not fully OTT, which makes them quite wearable on a daily basis. One could partner them with anything from a 40s frock to modern denim and they'd look great!

      Big hugs & many thanks for your lovely comment,
      ♥ Jessica

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  19. I love how colorful and happy all these are! I just love vibrant and colorful accessories, they add SO much to an outfit. I've never supported circuses for the whole ethics issue concerning animals (and I've never actually attended one myself), but I do agree that the circus theme rings well with vintage style clothing. I wouldn't mind owning a circus-themed novelty print dress (that balloon and clown one you have listed is super cute!), as long as I know my purchase does not contribute to the continuation of inhumane treatment of circus animals :(. Lovely post, regardless! <3

    xo, Serli
    www.lesoleilchic.blogspot.com

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  20. I have never been to the circus, the big striped fascinates me and worries me, I would like all the animals are free but the stories of the circus are another thing, the style also. The trapeze is my favorite, my imagination has the fishnets, dramatic makeup and costume worn and Baroque at the same time and very sparkly red shoes. I'm complicated, I know! In Italy we have the queen of the circus Moira, now a decadent character, a real beauty vintage old movies CinecittĂ .
    In this post I'm in love bracelet with rabbit- illusionist, the red shoes (divine) and the blue dress.

    baci

    Serena

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  21. I like the rabbit bracelet! the black red and white colour scheme reminds me of that book 'The Night Circus'. I really enjoyed that book and thought it was quite magical, maybe it's time for a re-read...

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  22. Those red and white polka dot shoes are darling! I once saw a pair like that and didn't buy them (well...because I have waaay too many shoes as it is) but I always regretted not purchasing them. I think I'm going to give in this time around! Thanks for sharing them!

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    1. Hi Naomi,

      Thank you very much for your lovely comment. Goodness, do I have a (more than a...) few of those items that I regret not purchasing, too. Top amongst which is an aqua 40s/50s cartwheel at 2 or 3 three years ago (someone else "BINed" it on eBay before I'd saved up enough to do the same). I hope that you love these delightfully fun shoes, if you give them a spin.

      Have a beautiful week,
      ♥ Jessica

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  23. Those hankies are absolutely adorable! I love a good circus theme :) (although, I have never actually been to a circus)

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    1. Hi lovely Abbi, aren't they fabulous? I've had some good luck at finding vintage hankies for my shop lately (one has been listed so far, others will follow soon), but none quite this adorable. More ones that fall into the beautiful/elegant zone. :)

      I think that circuses, especially in North America, are a lot rarer than they used to be. I haven't seen one come through our town in many years now. I hope that you're able to make it to one some day. I'd really love to see Cirque du Soleil, unlike most of my relatives, I haven't yet and sooo want to. The snippets of performances that I've seen online always look so breathtaking!

      Thank you very much for both of your great comments this weekend. Have a beautiful week ahead, my friend!

      ♥ Jessica

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  24. Such a fun theme!! I love the cute fabric make up bag - the images are adorable!

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