Launch of The Powderpuff Girls On Tour

You probably know I’m a massive fan of The Powderpuff Girls – I’ve hair my hair done by them on many occasions in the past, whether it was at the salon on Columbia Road, or at a pop-up shop during an event!

Well, whilst The Powder Room on Columbia Road has closed its doors, The Powderpuff Girls will be bringing the beauty on tour to a venue near you. The pop-ups will be packed full of exciting new packages for all your girly celebrations, plus all your old favourites too! The Powder Room will also be making appearances at Paper Dress every Saturday – and The Powderpuff Girls were kind enough to invite me to their launch on 26 January for a complimentary pamper. How could I say no?!

Paper Dress

Paper Dress is an amazing vintage clothes and accessories shop that also has a bar to serve cocktails, cakes and coffee (the ultimate three Cs), so this is an amazing venue to visit, even if you’re not getting your hair or make-up done!

Paper Dress board 1

The Powderpuff Girls have a pretty little section at the back of the shop, stocked with all the goodies you’ll ever need for your transformation into a retro beauty queen.

Powderpuff Girls 1

Flicking through their gorgeous look book for Speedy Hair, I plumped for victory rolls (again!) but this time decided to go for a rolled fringe!

Hair

Even though it’s my own hair, I have to admit, it looks amazing – and I can say that with complete modesty, as I had nothing to do with it other than to grow it out of my head! One day I’ll be able to style my hair like this, but until then I’ll leave it in the hands of the professionals…

Back of hair detail

Speedy Hair costs £25, In A Jiffy Make-up costs £20, and you can get a package deal for both for £40 (very reasonable – and they do such an amazing job; I’ve had them do my hair and make-up for my hen party and a very important work event too). The fact that the back of my head is shaped like a heart leads me nicely on to mentioning that appointments are available for pampering sessions for a weekend Valentine’s date on Saturday 16th February. You can also celebrate London Fashion Week with The Powderpuff Girls at The Hoxton, too!

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After getting my hair done, I popped on over to see the new painting of Kate Middleton at The National Portrait Gallery (my opinion: I’m obviously not an art connoisseur), which gave me the perfect chance to take some snaps of my hair in Trafalgar Square!

Top of hair Side hair in Trafalgar Square 3

Side hair in Trafalgar Square 2

(In case you didn’t see my post earlier in the week, I’m wearing the Gretel Coat from Collectif. Sunglasses from eBay, and my earrings are from my nan!)

When I got home, I realised that my hairstyle was actually pretty similar to Rachael’s from Blade Runner, so I decided to break out the navy jacket and shoulder pads and do my best ‘I’ve just discovered I’m a replicant’ expression (sorry, spoiler!).

Rachael Blade Runner

It’s actually really hard to have an existential crisis in front of the camera and not look like a bit of an emo, so I decided to bring out my cat, Saffy, to lighten the mood. A juxtapositioning of the sadness of a robotic lifeform yearning after the simple pleasure that an animal enjoys merely by being alive? Or just a self-portrait of woman and cat?

Gemma and Saffy

Or is she a… (wait for it…) REPLICAT?

Badum tssssh.

Visit The Powderpuff Girls online at www.thepowderpuffgirls.com. You can call them to book on 0844 879 4928, or email shop@thepowderpuffgirls.com!

Little Red Riding Hood in Trafalgar Square: The Collectif Gretel Coat Unleashed!

Way back on Christmas Day last year, I was a tiny bit bored with all the rubbish TV, so I decided to download issue 25 of Vintage Life. Scrolling through, I found the Christmas Wishlist feature and immediately fell in love with the Collectif Gretel Coat.

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Page from Vintage Life magazine.

Well, who wouldn’t? It’s an amazingly extravagant coat, straight out of Little Red Riding Hood – and a beautiful colour to boot. Unfortunately, at £160 it was definitely out of my price range – but then, a Christmas miracle happened. I checked out Collectif’s Facebook page and discovered that the company was running a 40% off discount… And they had one Gretel coat left, in my size. It was certainly fate, and who am I to fly in the face of the cosmos’ mysterious ways?

I ordered immediately, and when the coat arrived I fell in love all over again – but to be honest, I’ve chickened out of wearing it until last weekend. This is not a coat for the faint hearted. I was originally going to wear it last weekend, but with all the snow and ice I figured it would be just my luck to skid on the ice and fall over – embarrassing enough, but even worse when you’re dolled up to the nines. So when I was invited to the launch of The Powder Room on tour (more on that later!) I knew this was the perfect opportunity to wear my coat!

Gretel coat 2

Coat: Gretel by Collectif. Hair: The Powder Room @ Paper Dress*

As you can see, you certainly wouldn’t be lost in the crowd wearing this beauty! Sometimes, I wish I’d gone for the more subtle black version (but there weren’t any in stock, so it’s a moot point!), which would be more wearable, but then again, if you want to make an impact, this is certainly the go-to coat! Check out those beautiful pleats on the skirt, and the pretty pom-poms! The fabric has a gorgeous texture to it, and although the coat is very heavy, that makes it all the more snug for cold weather.

I thought I’d give you some behind the scenes info on taking this photo too. I employed a technique called ‘faith in humanity’, which involves setting your very expensive DSLR camera on timer mode in the middle of central London on a Saturday, and then running off so you can get as much of your body in shot without risking a heart attack. I also used another technique called ‘looking casually at buttons pretending to be doing important stuff’ which is useful when someone starts hanging around near you and looking suspiciously like they’ve mastered the art of ‘nicking someone’s camera when they’re taking photos of themselves in public by leaving their camera on the side’. Just a little insight there, in case you guys were students of photography like myself. (Please note, I have no idea what to do with my camera yet other than timer mode and no flash mode… But I am learning many techniques, which I am happy to humbly share with you!)

* My hair styling session at The Powder Room was complimentary for the purposes of revew on my blog – I’ll be posting a proper write-up later this week!

Judy’s Affordable Vintage Fair

General outfit 2

On Saturday (1 December), my husband and I popped into Judy’s Affordable Vintage Fair, so I could get my hair did for our big night out (more on that later)! I managed to restrain myself from spending big, although I’m now kicking myself because my parents have planned a roaring ’20s Agatha Christie murder mystery night for New Year’s Eve (okay, I sorta suggested it… and already had the kit… shush). If I had known then what I know now, and all that – although I have to admit, I’m more of a ’50s-era fan! (Despite the victory rolls!) There’s been some fierce, flapper-related eBaying since then, but we’ll get to that later – onto the fair!

Vintage Fair 5

The fair definitely lived up to its reputation as being affordable, and there were plenty of goodies on offer. I love vintage accessories, and although I don’t own any vintage clothing, that’s just a matter of time… I did try on a lovely long-sleeved white lace dress, but in the end I couldn’t get on over my hair – how about that for ironic?

In Judy's Vintage Fair 1

One of my favourite things about vintage fairs is how beautifully all the products are displayed. I spent most of my time taking pictures of everything rather than looking properly, in the end!

Vintage Fair Table Display Vintage Fair 13 Vintage Fair 10

I love vintage homewares, and I even spotted some Babycham glasses just like my nan used to break out at New Year’s!
Vintage Fair 7

That brought back some memories, I can tell you! I also coveted these gorgeous phones, and there was plenty of pretty crockery to be had.Vintage Fair 6 Vintage Fair 2

In Judy's Vintage Fair 3

I think for sure the highlights of the show for me were these pair of frankly amazing hats…

Vintage Fair 9 Vintage Fair 8

I especially had my eye on the bottom one – I don’t even know what this style of hat is called, but it’s lovely. I think the price was £50 – sadly too much to spend on something I know for a fact I’ll never really wear (as opposed to things I know I probably won’t wear but take a punt on anyway in case one day I wake up thinner, more daring, and more likely to be invited to lounge around a casino in Monte Carlo or something…)

These babies, however, were in my price range, and something I know I would wear…

Vintage Fair 12

So I bought the lovely silver one on the right – £6! Bargain!

Did anyone else visit the fair at the weekend? Or any other vintage fair recently? Let me know what you bought! And if you know what that style of hat is (and where I can get one, just for future reference, y’know), leave a comment – I’d be everso grateful!

Victory Rolls by The Powderpuff Girls!

On Saturday 1 December, I got my hair and make up done by the lovely Claire from The Powderpuff Girls! The company had a stall at Judy’s Affordable Vintage Fair, so I popped along to get all dolled up!

Getting ready 3

I had already decided I wanted victory rolls, because it’s a look I’ve never been able to do on myself, and I wanted to pick up some tips at the same time as seeing what it would look like! As you can see from this picture, my hair is ridiculously long, so I’m definitely planning on having it cut soon to make styling easier!

Getting ready 7

I guess the main tip I came away with was – don’t be afraid to backcomb to insane proportions! The hair you can see in the picture above hasn’t been sprayed at all, it’s just standing up all by itself!

(As a side note, don’t you LOVE the Powderpuff Girls’ uniform?!)

Getting ready 6

Another thing I’d been doing wrong with victory rolls is trying to curl my hair from the ends down – Claire started from the middle and wound backwards from there, and it definitely made it easier to do!

I also got my makeup done with the classic red lip and cat-eye flick.

Getting ready 5 Getting ready 1 Getting ready 10 Getting ready 11

The whole thing was a very reasonable £30, and I even got to take a free powderpuff home with me too! This is the third time I’ve had my hair and make up done by The Powderpuff Girls, and each time I’ve been really pleased with the look and the style’s holding power. They use Paul and Joe products along with some other brands you can see on the site, and it really makes a different to how long they last. I’m definitely thinking of investing in some Paul and Joe foundation – Claire wrote down all of the products she used on me, which was awesome!

Come back later in the week for more about the fair, my outfit, and the real reason we were in London… to see Viva Forever!