Tag Archives: Balboa

Lindy Focus 2017 Vendor Report

IMG_6815

Lindy Shopper and Porg wish you a Happy New Year from Lindy Focus!

2017 was a great year at Lindy Focus – the swing dance community has been growing, learning, becoming better versions of ourselves, working toward becoming a more inclusive community, and Lindy Focus embraced that and gave us resources to explore and grow. ¬†Needless to say, I had an amazing week, I’m filled with hope and joy, and hope that our 2018 continues to see new strides in making us an even better community of people being excellent to each other.

Part of this community is our micro-economy here at Lindy Focus, where vendors set up in the two lobby areas of the Crowne Plaza Resort Asheville and dancers can browse and partake in services and products that are either personal in nature or tailored to swing dancers.

Of course there is the Lindy Focus merchandise table, which is always heavily picked-over by the time I arrive on December 27 – the gear is good, I don’t necessarily know what it was, but I got a green sweatshirt with the LF logo on it and that’s about all this green-loving gal needs. ūüėČ

IMG_6745

Add some Savoy Shop sparkle!

Next to the merchandise/check-in is the Savoy Shop, a consignment shop and shoe repair boutique that has become an essential part of the event to people who not only are looking to buy fun apparel for dancing or offload said apparel to make room in their closets, but also a fantastic on-site backup plan for several kinds of catastrophes that can occur when traveling to dance weekends over holidays – lost luggage, broken shoes, forgotten items, forgotten outfits, upgrades to outfits, and I’m sure there are other ways the Savoy Shop has saved people’s sanity over the course of the week. ¬†Men’s and women’s clothing and shoes available, lots of good selections, tailored to our dancing needs!

IMG_6722

Lush blooms by ChatterBlossom

The main lobby is the main vendor area and the first person I laid eyes on when I got to the hotel was Jamie Sturdevant of ChatterBlossom, an Etsy shop specializing in hair flowers and headpieces made from vintage millinery flowers. ¬†Jamie lives near me, so I am spoiled by being able to collaborate with her on a regular basis, but I am excited that people get to see Jamie’s pieces in person because I can not overstate the fact that vintage millinery flowers are superior in both detail of floral design and in color matching to vintage clothing. ¬†Even if you don’t wear vintage, there are an array of blooms to match your modern attire and add a bit of vintage flair.

IMG_6761

For heads, necks, and lapels…

If Jamie didn’t have something for your head, Forties Forward perhaps had just the piece, offering their lovely blooms, as well as feathered and jeweled headpieces, which were great options for people seeking to add a bit of flair and sparkle to their New Year’s Eve attire. ¬†In addition to hair accessories, Forties Forward also had a nice selection of menswear accessories – ties, hats, and some silky boutonniere flowers just in time for that New Year’s Eve lapel!

IMG_6714

Wear the Woopie rainbow…

A Woopie Bow was a new vendor to Lindy Focus, although I have seen these ties at ILHC in a previous year and I was happy to see them back again, as there are often fewer vendors offering menswear items and I’m sure we all like to have options. ¬†Helena Verheyen, a dancer and theater costume designer based in Ghent, Belgium, is the designer and creator of said bow ties and she selects fantastic fabrics from second-hand clothing and sometimes repurposes neckties to make her bows (which is a great idea if you have a damaged necktie, to get some more wear out of it). ¬†Her website offers custom work, as well!

 

img_6723.jpg

GET IN MY CLOSET

It took a couple of tries to even get close to the Saint Savoy table and I felt bad for Austrian dancer Maren Merian, who was being pulled in a thousand directions – I’ll start this off by suggesting that we all proceed like civilized humans, take a minute to be patient when there is clearly a line and a demand and one person working the booth, and be mindful of personal space and allowing people to have time to make a decision about footwear. ¬†Once I did make it near the table, of course the shoes were glorious and, after waiting my turn, Maren was gracious and helpful and I purchased a pair of Saint Savoy’s brand new multicolored blues/greens Grace shoe, a perfect 1930’s style shoe in a shape I haven’t seen anyone else making and I certainly hadn’t seen in person until Lindy Focus. ¬†It was love at first sight, a shoe that you don’t even care if you own anything to go with it, it must be owned, worn, and loved! ¬†They also came in solid dark red and taupe, and I spotted Jo Hoffberg in the brown colourway. ¬†The Edens and the Rivieras were also selling like hot cakes and I’m excited to see what Saint Savoy has up their sleeves next!

IMG_6758

I don’t know that we’ve had a makeup vendor in the past, outside of someone applying makeup, but dancer Iris Tarou brought us many shades of lip color with LipSense, a product she discovered last year before Lindy Focus and loved it so much she decided to start a business selling it. ¬†There’s nothing better than believing in and loving what you are selling! ¬†Per Iris’ post, LipSense is dance-proof, sweat-proof, kiss-proof, waterproof, and burrito-proof, which is basically what every dancer needs and what sounds like it would be an awesome New Year’s Eve to get your kiss at midnight after a long night of dancing and then go get burritos. ¬†For more information, join the Indelible Look by Iris Facebook group.

We also had massage therapists on-site, which is undoubtedly an essential part of a week-long dance event – Bennie Vo and Erin Hennessy had the perfect setup, a table and chair next to the fireplace for warmth, with the awesome swing music from the music jam in the alcove just a few feet away.

IMG_6752

Charleston kicks for your walls!

Ryan Calloway returned to Lindy Focus with his fantastic jazz music and jazz dancing prints, with a book of samples you could flip through, and then a link to a new service he is using called Redbubble, which streamlined the ordering process a bit, because Ryan didn’t have to be present to take your order and you can see all the options on the website. ¬†In addition to prints, you can also order tee shirts and hoodies with Ryan’s artwork!

IMG_6716

Mary Kay Williams was back offering caricature drawings on-site, on-demand, while you wait. ¬†She had some great samples up, like a dancer/musician/world-famous doctor Dorry Segev in Superman scrubs and Admiral Holdo with her enviable purple fingerwaves. ¬†If you’ve never had a portrait drawn of yourself, Lindy Focus is a great time to add one to your collection!

IMG_6757

Fats Walrus!

Our new visual artist this year is dance instructor Laura Glaess, who had been gradually revealing her line of anthropomorphic jazz musicians on her Facebook artist’s page in the months leading up to Lindy Focus, drawn with a bit of pun and a lot of whimsy. ¬†It was so great to see these in person and see the full lineup of jazz musicians! ¬†She also did the artwork for Brooks Prumo Orchestra‘s debut album which is the perfect segue into the next topic…

IMG_6717

This isn’t even all of it, just what was there when I dropped off the Mint Julep Jazz Band stuff – see how they were adding a second table in front – BANANAS!

…since our local artists also lend their talents to our swing musicians (Ryan Calloway did the artwork for Keenan McKenzie’s new album “Forged in Rhythm“). ¬†The sheer volume of music available for purchase, recorded by musicians in attendance at Lindy Focus, was so large that they had to keep adding tables to hold all the music and merchandise for sale. ¬†It made my heart sing to know that our community can support this much music, much of it recorded and/or composed specifically for dancers and dancing. ¬†I challenge you to learn about these musicians, there’s a list of them here. ¬†Google them, check out their websites, buy their music!

If any of this is incorrect or I have missed something/someone, please let me know and I will edit/add to this post! ¬†It’s hard to keep track of everything going on at Lindy Focus, I’m sure you can agree! ¬†Until next year, love and progress in 2018…

IMG_6715

Woopie Bows in warm tones

IMG_6713

Your Woopie Bow also comes with a how-to diagram

IMG_6718

Edens and Rivieras at your service, from Saint Savoy

IMG_6724

Saint Savoy for men, also with great color options

IMG_6719

The lilies from ChatterBlossom are the size of your face and they are wonderful

IMG_6721

These ChatterBlossom pansies are adorable and sweet (and not the size of your face)

IMG_6744

Lots of real vintage this year at the Savoy Shop, including this wonderful 40’s dress with soutache detailing

IMG_6746

One of several phases of women’s shoes at the Savoy Shop

IMG_6747

Solid men’s shoe offerings at the Savoy Shop

IMG_6748

Anyone know the story on this jacket? ¬†Very interesting…

IMG_6749

Savoy Shop ties to brighten your day

IMG_6750

Just the tip of the iceberg on the Savoy Shop tie clips

IMG_6753

Ryan Calloway’s fabulous prints

IMG_6755

Laura Glaess gives us Lionel Hamster (and Lindy Focus will give us Lionel Hampton as the new bandleader for the 2018 transcription project!)

IMG_6756

Django Rhinohardt is as cool as they come, thanks to Laura Glaess

IMG_6759

Sample the LipSense!

IMG_6760

All the luscious LipSense colors

IMG_6762

Forties Forward gives us flights of fancy!

IMG_6763

Lots of fun blooms at the Forties Forward table, love the polka dots!

IMG_6814

Because because because because because!!!

Advertisements

Saint Savoy Eden

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

23905746_1643550805687849_2236262789561106787_n

Saint Savoy just released a new shoe design, the Eden, and I was virtually stopped in my tracks on Facebook because I need a pair and need to know everything about it.¬† Of course they have a green pair I’m dying to own, but it’s black with a deep, almost iridescent, green detail, as if to say “I’m Evil” in the best possible Una-Mae-Carlisle-kind-of-way.¬† Also available with two tone matte/shiny combos of tan/bronze and white/silver and a double shiny pair with bronze/silver, here’s the post from this morning:

“A classic peep toe, eye-catching asymmetry, sturdy 4-cm heel, and fitted ankle strap.

With padding softer at the heel than the toe, this shoe allows the balls of your feet impeccable control of the floor while firmly supporting your ankles and heels .

A comparison between the heels of the RIVIERA and the EDEN will show the difference in cut. The sole is softer and the toe box wider than the RIVIERAs.

Enjoy this classy shoe on and off the dance floor! We deliver free of charge worldwide and include a shoe bag with every purchase.”

Best possible additional news?  Saint Savoy will be at Lindy Focus!

24176950_1643550715687858_8805310144350333962_n

Natty Shirts’ “Savvy Journalist” Shirt

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

The-Savvy-Journalist

In the search for reproduction menswear, one of the most commonly worn items, a dress shirt, is generally available – however, if you are a stickler for detail, you’ll notice that most modern men’s shirts lack that distinctive spearpoint collar prevalent in jazz age/swing era shirts. ¬†One could always spend the money for a custom shirt, but what if you just want something a little more vintage without spending an arm and a leg?

It has been suggested by some of my esteemed OcTieBer colleagues that Natty Shirts’ “Savvy Journalist” shirt is that shirt – not quite exactly a vintage spearpoint, but definitely closer than most modern options, and, at $29.99, it’s far from breaking the bank. ¬†You can even get it monogrammed for an additional $5.00.

Miss Candyfloss

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

23659450_1622100107833850_1775577729629340095_n

The dress that spoke to me – I already have a coat like this, so the dress just completes the set, right?

I know, I know, another UK repro/retro clothing website, but as long as the UK keeps delivering the goods, I’m going to keep blogging about them. ¬†Miss Candyfloss has been on my list to write about since earlier this fall, since they launched their “Femme Fatale” collection that, in my opinion, elevated them to the next level, with 40’s and 50’s-inspired pieces that were rich in color and style.

Do not let their terrible user interface deter you – there is good stuff here. ¬†Start by following them on Facebook to see higher resolution photos of all the garments, particularly the aforementioned “Femme Fatale” collection, which looks both dance-friendly and work-friendly. ¬†And while I don’t usually like polyester (some looks great, most looks not so great), these garments look so good that I took the plunge on one of their dresses over the weekend. ¬†Also, plaid – there’s never enough plaid. ¬†UK, you keep doing you and keep the plaid and tweeds coming…

Their attention to detail extends to the manufacturing process – from the website:

“Miss Candyfloss is manufactured within Europe under fair trade conditions, as we consider this as an important issue. Though sometimes hard to live up to for larger brands, Miss Candyfloss differ. The clothes aren‚Äôt mass produced in large factory lines, so things like working conditions, salaries and good item quality can be kept a closer watch upon. This also gives you, as a customer, a more long lasting quality where the products are made out of honest concern and care.”

Here are some of my favorites:

23795146_1624515004259027_931782339266221495_n

Jumpsuits are so hot right now. ¬†Green jumpsuits…

22853391_1603270033050191_256238307147977072_n

The perfect fall plaid dress.

22406028_1582386238471904_3378796054931941794_n.jpg

Car coat with REMOVABLE CAPE

22195783_1577838308926697_4983435439087326143_n

Leonie-Rose red pencil dress

21740383_1558103534233508_5995670749662365603_n

Love love love the bow detail on this skirt.

21077794_1542117949165400_3877472989887415517_n

Gotta end on a beautiful green note…

Nancy Mac

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

1f98147c56fe13f4ef0ca1e0c383afa8

I want this on my body right now…I mean, I don’t have anything in THIS shade of green velvet…

It’s about time to start planning what to wear for New Year’s Eve (or, if you are me, you’ve been planning since you knew you were going to Lindy Focus months ago) for Lindy Focus, Snowball, or perhaps your local scene has a special event.¬† This may be the trickiest night of the year to dress yourself because you want to look like you’re on a red carpet, but you also need to be able to move and sweat like you’re running a marathon.

I took one look at Nancy Mac‘s collection of dresses and immediately thought these would make great NYE dresses for swing dancers – luxe fabrics in movement-friendly cuts with vintage silhouettes.¬† This U.K. based company (if anyone was in doubt, the UK is KILLING IT with the repro brands) was founded by two sisters, Hannah and Sarah McMahon, and their about page reads like music to my ears and my closet: “Designed to flatter, Nancy Mac dresses and stand-alone separates are cut with care from luxurious fabrics and unique prints.¬† Every piece in the range is inspired by the belief that true style stands the test of time. We love making beautiful yet affordable clothes that you will want to wear and keep in your wardrobe forever.”

Did I mention that I have a velvet problem, in that I can’t resist it?¬† Specifically vintage silk velvet?¬† Because it feels like buttah on your body, inside and out, but then come the rips I seem to be forever repairing…with a newer garment (which I also own in silk velvet, because problems) fabric deterioration becomes less of an issue and I’m just over the moon about Nancy Mac’s velvet dresses because they look so wearable, on top of that silk velvet feeling.¬† Other fabrics look almost as enticing, such as viscose crepe, silk viscose, and just plain silk.¬† Do you feel fancy?¬† Because I feel fancy talking about all these fancy fabrics.

Let’s not forget that it gets cold in the mountains of North Carolina and in Sweden in December – Nancy Mac also has gorgeous coordinating jackets, shrugs, and coats to go with their dresses.¬† There’s also a collection called Mint Julep…it’s like they knew I was coming…

Here is what I am loving from the Nancy Mac website:

6d9247f6ad9fe881ac7d6dacc0460391

This chevron burnout velvet makes me weep with joy.

6187ce5aea5958a88aa5f3af13f8cbd1

Blue lace, beautifully done.

be45250e0331ee67bc0a3c510b1a4f5d

For New Year’s…or every day for tactile bliss…

f3ffec922b2a7ec0d9b9340e86d3f5cc

This velvet and crepe jumpsuit is brilliant

0cd61347ccd851e0ef2d70eaa6ab87b0

This emerald crepe would be easy to dress up, just add sparkles

Re-Mix Update – New Color Balboa and New Style

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

5a9024cb-67a8-4f71-9275-e282aedcc5b6

The shoe news just keeps coming, Re-mix Vintage Shoes has some new goodies for us – a limited edition teal/blue color combo in their popular Balboa style (but only 16 pairs total – don’t hesitate if you need these in your life) AND a brand new style called Starlet.¬† I love love love the new Starlet shoe, anything with a wide low heel and cutouts is good in my book.¬† It has the same heel as the Gabrielle shoe, I just hope it doesn’t share the same width issues for my fat feet…feel free to weigh in on fit/stretch in the comments after you’ve worn yours for a few months. ūüėČ

aa7c6dc6-9734-4da4-8590-bd14ce51b465

GET ON MY FEET

SuAli Swing Shoes

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

13524386_1619508795026614_4520036700060588761_n

The trend of swing dance-focused shoe companies continues and no one has their pulse on the dance shoes of now like dancer/instructor/organizer Jenna Applegarth – in my next installment of shoes Jenna has recommended to me and others in the Women’s Swing Dance Shoe Hunt! Facebook group, we have SuAli Swing Shoes¬†based in Italy and owned by swing dancers.

You’ll have to pardon my complete ignorance of the Italian language – I’m using Google to translate the SuAli Swing Shoes website, but this is what I can tell from the rough transation (and really, we mostly need photos of these lovely shoes AMIRITE?):

Anyone else with more information is free to share more in the comments section.  Ciao!

21106676_1837359453241546_4232159773782164179_n

The Jean shoe – the sides of the heel have cutouts, too!

15591256_1709555869355239_6742693084013000080_o

The Frankie cap toes, also available in black/brown combo.

15676320_1709553852688774_8437970132140708347_o

Love the Big Bea in this plummy color – also available in royal blue.

Camp Hollywood XX Vendor Report

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

CH-Flyer_2017_Front copy

I’m excited to bring you my first ever Lindy Shopper vendor report from my very first Camp Hollywood!¬† I have been wanting to attend this event for years and life always found a way to keep me away from dancing in California.¬† I was able to attend half of the event (Sunday and Monday), to sing with Michael Gamble and the Rhythm Serenaders, and even attending half of the weekend was awesome, but I’m afraid my vendor report has some holes because not all vendors are at their tables all the time and our schedules didn’t always coincide.

Camp Hollywood has the largest dedicated space for vendors of any event I have attended, it’s an entire hotel ballroom, plus a side room with a clothing vendor and hair salon pop-up.¬† If the airline had lost my luggage, there were no worries about covering my needs for the weekend.

Let’s take the tour, shall we?

IMG_6190

Oh, hello…have we met?

My first stop was Vintage Blue Moon, which arguably held the largest vendor space and was a treasure trove of both men’s and women’s vintage – the men’s section was at least as large, if not larger, than the women’s section.¬† There was enough inventory that I felt transported, I’ve been in some brick and mortar shops with smaller inventory than what owners Robert and Kristi Alvarez brought to the LAX Marriott.¬† The selection was carefully curated for its swing era audience, and even had a good selection of 1920’s clothing and accessories, which they brought this year after getting requests last year.¬† I picked up a 1940’s suit for my day job that is reminiscent of something Tilda Swinton would have worn in her turn as gossip column twins in Hail, Caesar! and I couldn’t be more pleased.

IMG_6192

All the colored bangles at All the Shiny Things

All the Shiny Things occupied most of the vending space in the center of the ballroom and I’m afraid I didn’t get a chance to chat with the owner of this space, but the array of costume jewelry from so many decades past was vast and colorful – I get easily overwhelmed by jewelry counters and this was like the King Kong of jewelry selections.¬† I loved all the colored bangles, if you were looking for a match, you’d probably find it here.¬† Now looking at this photo and wishing I had more time to figure out what colors I need!

IMG_6201

A Loco Lindo dress in one of the most popular prints of the weekend

I was excited to see Loco Lindo again, who had come to All Balboa Weekend several years ago, and see what owner/designer Linda Marrone had been up to since then.¬† I’ve been following her line of clothing on Facebook, but it’s always nice to see things and chat in person.¬† Her washable and danceable crepe dresses (great for work, too!) were already selling well and she was out of several sizes in some prints, but I managed to snag a dress in my size in a tropical print that I’d seen on her website and liked from afar.¬† Her corner of the ballroom was cheerful and bustling, a credit to Linda’s designs and her personality as she chatted with the dancer/shoppers.¬† Like Trashy Diva, her prints come in limited runs, so don’t tarry when making your decisions about what to buy.

IMG_6204

Chloe’s signature shoe

The ever-classy Chloe Hong occupied a good portion of the vendor ballroom, with the largest selection of items I’ve seen at an event to date.¬† In addition to her custom tailoring and racks of samples, she carried two colors of the famous Whitey’s Lindy Hoppers logo tee, as well as a rainbow selection of her low-heeled t-strap shoes, which are fast becoming ubiquitous on dance floors all over the US (and I can say this, having seen them at dance events on the east coast and the west coast on the same weekend).¬† Gracious and kind, it’s always a joy to see her at events and see the beautiful custom work she does for dancers.

IMG_6211

Brittany in action

Occupying an end cap of the All the Shiny Things center island in the vendor ballroom was Electro Flapper – Get Dolled and Dapper, featuring vintage hairstyles, brow shaping, and lashes by owner Brittany Leavitt.¬† I didn’t get to spend time chatting with Brittany, but I do love seeing these services at dance events, whether its for a special updo or routine maintenance that you simply haven’t had time to get to until it’s right there in front of you at a dance weekend and you’ve got an hour of free time.¬† Check out the amazing and perfect vintage ‘dos on her Facebook page and get inspired to make an appointment for CHXI.

IMG_6212

Because there were so many vendors, two vendors had to set up in a conference room next door to the vendor ballroom.¬† The first of these is Pepperpie Vintage, which had a mix of swing era goodies and clothing from more recent decades.¬† Again, I just had enough time to run by and snap some photos, thankfully with the permission of owner Perrin Iacopino – but, alas, I couldn’t find a website or a Facebook page for this shop, so if anyone in the know can direct me I will be happy to link to where we can find Pepperpie Vintage information in the future.

Sharing the space with Pepperpie Vintage was a “Hair Bar” run by Kimmery Michelle Thompson of Shear Attitude Hair Salon, offering up-do’s, down-do’s, a mix of both, hair accessories, and color streaks.¬† The Hair Bar looked so inviting, with a lighted sign, vintage pink bonnet dryer, and a glorious Art Deco vanity that just begs for finger waves to be done in view of its glorious circular mirror.¬† I didn’t get to see Kimmery in action, but you can see her work on her lovely Instagram page, @_kimmerydoesmyhair.¬† Two great hair stylists at this event!

IMG_6216

Adorable and inviting!

We return to the vendor ballroom to visit Saint Savoy’s table – no one was at the table when I was in the ballroom, but it’s no secret that I love dancing in their shoes, having blogged about them several times before on this blog.¬† Since I didn’t acquire any new and interesting tidbits, I’ll share all my previous Saint Savoy posts so you can see the love.

IMG_6194

The lovely Vogue wedge

Also no secret is my love for Re-mix Vintage Shoes and, while I didn’t get to visit the mothership, owner Philip Heath had an extensive selection of footwear, including wedges, which are not usually a part of his All Balboa Weekend display (which is the only other time I have seen Re-mix shoes en masse at an event).¬† I got to chat with Philip for a bit about his recent travel to Italy to sell shoes at an event, his visit to the shoe factory that makes these glorious shoes in Spain, and about the construction of the reproduction 1940’s wedges.¬† Did you know that not just the leather outside of the shoes is modeled after vintage shoes, but also the inside construction of the wedge sole?¬† We talked about the flexibility and give of the leather for each style, particularly the two most popular styles, which right now are the pleated toe wedge and the Vogue wedge.¬† Philip noted that even the finishing touches are the same on these shoes, with a stitched edge on the pleated toe and a ribbon edge on the Vogue, both of which affect the structure of the shoe, how it fits, and how the leather stretches (or in the case of the Vogue, how it doesn’t stretch as much because of the ribbon).¬† This explains why my¬† bunioned/bone spurred feet gravitated toward the pleated toe wedge as my favorite pair of Re-mixes for dancing!¬† Close seconds in the most-popular-Re-mix-wedges-for-dancing category were the Picasso wedge, which I find has similar give to the the leather as the pleated toe, and the Greta wedge, which Philip noted that many people with difficult feet were surprised at how well this shoe worked for them and stretched with them.¬† I had been having some anxiety about another dance shoe company discontinuing all of their wedges (maybe hanging on to them past their smell-by date) since I mostly wear wedges to my local weekly dances, but I feel so much better after this conversation with Philip about selecting Re-mix wedges that are going to be right for my foot for dancing.

FullSizeRender

Last, but certainly not least, instructor/dancer/visual artist Mickey Fortanasce has created a follow-up deck to his original Legends of Swing deck of playing cards (sold at Lindy Focus this past year), with the second edition featuring swing dance legends from the west coast, including Jean Veloz, Hal Takier, and Ray Hirsch.¬† Two important things to note: 1) “ALL profits from the sale of these cards will be donated to worthy organizations The LA Burrito Project doing outreach feeding and donating supplies to the Los Angeles homeless, and Black Lindy Hop Matters, an organization based in Baltimore, MD which works to build welcoming communities and advancement opportunities for black dancers and advocates for cultural integrity, recognition and respect for African American people and heritage” and 2) you can still purchase a deck from the Camp Hollywood website while supplies last!

I know I am missing at least one vendor, but I wasn’t in the ballroom when the vendor was there to get permission to take photos, so my apologies! ¬†(EDITED to add that Jen Gomez of Bandini St. came forward to note the missing vendors, one of which was her table of accessories and shoe bags that was a part of the Loco Lindo booth and I had taken a picture of her shoe bags and not realized it was a separate vendor. ¬†Check out her Etsy shop, full of lovely hair accessories. ¬†The other vendor I missed was A Walk Thru Time Vintage and Costume Annex, selling vintage clothing and costumes. ¬†Thanks, Jen!)

Much love to you, Camp Hollywood, for providing such ample space for vendors and for providing four days of shopping, social dancing, competitions, classes, and so much more. ‚̧

IMG_6179

Jewels at Vintage Blue Moon

 

 

IMG_6189

Enough menswear to line a wall of the ballroom…courtesy of Vintage Blue Moon

 

IMG_6193

Pearls to go with any flapper ensemble, at All the Shiny Things

 

IMG_6195

Far right, Re-mix’s pleated toe wedge, with the Greta wedge in the middle

 

IMG_6198

An adorable blouse by Loco Lindo

IMG_6185

Vintage sunglasses at Vintage Blue Moon

IMG_6200

A tropical dress for me, backed by a number of Loco Lindo’s fantastic crepe prints

IMG_6202

Shoe bags in fun prints by Bandini St.

IMG_6206

Wool caps in lush tweeds and colors by Chloe Hong

IMG_6210

That wonderful logo on tees thanks to Chloe Hong

IMG_6209

Chloe Hong’s custom work sample rack – check out those striped jackets!¬† Someone please buy the green stripes and come dance with me!

IMG_6213

Adorable vintage tunic at Pepperpie Vintage

IMG_6215

I love a capelet! At Pepperpie Vintage

All Balboa Weekend 2017 – Vendor Report

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

logo11

I apologize for the tardiness, but, as we all know, life happens outside of the Internet – always better late than never is the All Balboa Weekend vendor post, because ABW has, in my opinion, the best vendor aggregate year after year. ¬†This was my 10th ABW, if you can believe it, and the first one I couldn’t attend for the entire weekend, but I promise I crunched to maximize my time there and to give you this attempt at a comprehensive vendor post.

Before we get into the shopping, I have two things to note:

  1. I was given the incredible opportunity to examine Genevieve Grazis’ performance clothing, including the famous Beach Clip dress, and was invited to talk about the dress’ construction and details in front of the entire event as part of Kate Hedin and Bobby White‘s presentation and demonstration of the dress. ¬†While everyone is gaga over the 11 godets that, combined with 1930’s satin, make this dress spin like a dream (and rightly so!), but my favorite part of this dress are the sleeves – a triple pleats, both front and back, along the arm hole seam with two piped seams straddling a panel in the middle of the sleeve. ¬†The result is a puffed sleeve created by divine architecture.
19030576_1545189942189544_137862900157519134_n

LindyShopper talks, Kate is radiant in Genevieve’s dress – photograph courtesy of McFreebird Photography

2. ¬†Coif magicians Destinee Cushing and Francine Amendola combined forces to form the Hepcat Salon, delivering incredible and pristine vintage hairstyles all weekend long. ¬†I know several people who will get their hair done and wear it for a couple of nights or most of the weekend so they don’t have to worry about doing it multiple nights and to keep it out of their faces, which I think is a great plan to maximize your ‘do and practical for a dance weekend with lots going on that you don’t want to miss.

The flagship booth at ABW is always Re-mix Vintage Shoes, who makes very rare appearances at any events outside of southern California. ¬†I know people wait until ABW to buy their first (or second, or 10th) pair of Re-mix shoes so they can try them on and see how the styles fit their feet. ¬†I can’t tell you how happy it makes me to see them all in a row.

Next in the lineup was Sweet Lorain, which is my favorite vintage shop in Cleveland. ¬†To call it a shop is really an understatement, it’s almost a warehouse, definitely a department store, and you can get lost in there for hours amongst the clothing, furniture, kitchen wares, records, Christmas decorations, and on. ¬†Of course, for ABW, they pull a selection of garments with dancers in mind from the 1930’s through the 1950’s so that you don’t have to do the digging, it’s already been dug out for you and is sitting in the hallway of the event. ¬†My story this year is that Andy Nishida and Rita Shiang (dancers and organizers of Richmond, VA’s Jammin on the James) had come to Cleveland a few weeks earlier for the World Congress on Art Deco and had scouted a 1920’s dress for me at Sweet Lorain. ¬†1920’s dresses are hard for me because of my body type, so I was hesitant to phone in the purchase, even though Rita knows my size. ¬†I show up at ABW with this texted photograph of a dress and the owner, Redwin Lewis, knew the dress immediately, still had it, knew it would be perfect for me – and it was! ¬†Sometimes vintage shopping is easy and sometimes it takes a few steps to find a dress a home.

De Fils en Perles returned to ABW this year with even more intricate beadwork, much of it Art Deco-inspired. ¬†I was particularly smitten with the earrings this year, which were often made of an exquisite central bead with smaller embellishments and looked perfect for certain 1920’s and 1930’s ensembles. ¬†I am often overwhelmed by jewelry, so many beautiful small things at once, and I took some time to sit down and go through the earrings and really appreciate the detail that goes into each piece.

Retro Rosie made its ABW debut this year and before I even got to ABW, there was a buzz that a vendor was there selling Trashy Diva. ¬†I spoke with Miranda Scott, the owner, who runs this brick and mortar shop and an online shop, that most of her sales are online. ¬†I found this unsurprising, given the specialty nature of the garments (as much as I like to think we are the norm), and was glad she gave ABW a chance. ¬†She had several Trashy Diva dresses that are discontinued in most sizes, so secondary stockists are essential for the dress you may have missed (since they TD lines are selling out within days of launch, nowadays) and the chance to try things on in person.¬† She also had a selection of Besame Cosmetics, another item that I can’t purchase locally to me, but that I see on the internet all the time on vintage blogs and it’s great to see the colors in person and be able to try them on, as well.

il_570xN.1220981534_he3h

Jamie in an ABW ensemble with giant lily

Jamie Sturdevant’s Chatterblossom booth is always a bright spot, with her cheery disposition, creative floral-inspired ensembles for each day, and a bevy of blooms for each possible scenario and outfit. ¬†Indecision abounds at this booth, as there are so many to choose from, so many outfits to match, so many beautiful pieces that you just want to come home with you. ¬†My favorite pieces this year are the giant lilies she acquired earlier in the year by chance, they are just so big and elegant, I want one in every color! ¬†Message her about matching one to your favorite ensemble, her Etsy listings are only the tip of the floral iceberg.

Finally, at the end of the hallway are the Flower Child ladies, who also do an amazing job of curating just the kinds of vintage goods dancers and swing era enthusiasts want, and also go back to their warehouse to look for items to fill specific requests. ¬†With new things brought back every day, it’s worth a gander multiple times during the event to keep up with what is in stock. ¬†My favorite item this year, brought to my attention by Jamie and ultimately purchased by Destinee, was a chartreuse 1930’s gown studded with rhinestones, featuring braided straps and a bias cut guaranteed to flatter the figure. ¬†Destinee wore it on Saturday night and, with her impeccable hair and makeup and a Chatterblossom bloom, looked like a legit silver screen movie star – or perhaps early technicolor, because no one should hide the color of this gown!

And here we are!  Enjoy the photo spread below!

18952681_10154005338449229_284392943343888328_n

But for serious…this chartreuse gown from Flower Child is everything! ¬†Thanks to Destinee Cushing for allowing me to use this photo.

IMG_5856

A sun-speckled display at the Flower Child booth.

IMG_5858

Ladies hats, ladies things…at Flower Child.

IMG_5861

A gorgeous 1940’s rayon print dress at Flower Child.

IMG_5862

Bathing suit…romper…whatever you want…at Flower Child.

IMG_5863

A waistcoat and some men’s accessories at Flower Child.

IMG_5864

Lilies, roses, and blooms about at ChatterBlossom.

IMG_5866

A purple and white orchid at ChatterBlossom.

IMG_5867

Oh, God, I’m terrible at botany – I don’t remember what these are, but they looked like they were dappled in frost, just so lovely – at ChatterBlossom.

IMG_5869

A sight for sore eyes – gorgeous Besame Cosmetics on display at Retro Rosie.

IMG_5870

Vintage hairstyling books and Trashy Diva at Retro Rosie.

IMG_5871

Trashy Diva, alive and in person – at Retro Rosie.

IMG_5872

Perfect summer cropped top at Sweet Lorain.

IMG_5873

What even is this magical woven trim detail on this dress?  At Sweet Lorain.

IMG_5874

A sweet 1940’s rayon print long sleeved dress at Sweet Lorain.

IMG_5875

Bakelite abounds at Sweet Lorain.

IMG_5876

1940’s neckties at Sweet Lorain.

IMG_5878

More delicious details at Sweet Lorain.

IMG_5879

Minty fresh color on this comfy men’s shirt at Sweet Lorain.

IMG_5880

One of many awesome sweater vests at the Sweet Lorain booth.

IMG_5881

A summer starched topper at Sweet Lorain.

IMG_5882

Re-mix, how do I love thee?¬† Let me count the ways…

IMG_5885

Men’s selections at Re-Mix Vintage Shoes.

IMG_5886

Knots divine at Re-Mix Vintage Shoes.

IMG_5921

Beaded sets at De Fils en Perles.

IMG_5922

All this wonderful detail, handmade, just incredible – at De Fils en Perles.

 

 

 

 

SJC 1930’s Chinos

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

19059408_10155214595456421_5693151688489612085_n

If I seem like a broken record, I promise it’s not the record, because the tune keeps changing.¬† One of the benefits of doing limited runs and placing orders in advance for goods is that you are only ordering based on the demand and you can easily switch your attentions to the next development.¬† I really like Simon James Cathcart’s business model because he is constantly bringing new items to the market, hence the repeated posts.¬† The downside is that you don’t get a year to mull over whether or not you need something in your life, but maybe that’s best – if it’s not hitting us in the gut or on our mind consistently for a matter of days, do we really need it?¬† You might if you decide you might have regrets later.¬† I’ve learned to trust my gut.

Another thought before I get to the substance of this post – the most searched for item on Lindy Shopper is men’s high waisted trousers, presumably in light-weight, breathable fabrics for dancing.

So what I am telling you is that this item, which is the most sought-after item on this blog, is available to you now on Simon James Cathcart’s website, but not for long!¬† This limited run of 1930’s chinos, available in khaki, navy, and chocolate brown, are what you have been looking for – something off the rack that you can throw on your body with a shirt of just about any ilk, and go out dancing.¬† Washable.¬† Breathable.¬† Movable.¬† Unisex.¬† That’s right, ladies, these trousers are for us, too – though a man’s pattern, given that these sit at the natural waist and have a wide leg, wide enough to accommodate a larger hip/waist ratio, this could work for you, too.¬† SJC’s advertising includes both a male and a female model to show you just how this will work, which caught my eye and took out the guesswork.

You know what to do!

The Venice Beach Dress

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

5b836d5676b090ac09146de96d6e8bb2

Genevieve and Helwig from the Beach Clip

How often do you find a vintage piece of clothing and wished you knew more about the story of the person who wore it?  Sometimes vintage clothing will come with a tidbit of history, passed on from the family to the vintage clothing vendor, and in those wonderful rare moments you might see a photo of the original owner in the garment.

Then there are the garments that are a part of our history as swing dancers – even more rare, like the Whitey’s Lindy Hoppers jackets (lovingly reproduced by Chloe Hong) or the costumes worn on the silver screen by our Lindy Hop luminaries of the 30’s and 40’s. ¬†Maybe some people know where some of these items are, but others are lost to time.

18557527_10100718525276536_3471271754848033372_n

Kate Hedin in THE dress

I remember reading Bobby White’s Swungover posts on Genevieve Grazis, one of the followers in the famous “Beach Clip” that many a Balboa dancer has studied in painstaking detail, and following his adventures in historic sleuthing about who she was and her life outside of this snippet of time we know as the Beach Clip. ¬†After reading about the lives of the original swing dancers and watching them in videos, I can’t help but think,¬†“Where are the clothes they wore, where are they NOW?” ¬†Maybe that’s just my inclination. ¬†Genevieve’s dress in the Beach Clip is distinct, both in its attention-grabbing “color” and texture, as well as the impeccable twirl of the gored skirt.

So I’m scrolling through Facebook today and at the top of my feed is the resplendent Kate Hedin in a glorious white satin dress – THE satin dress worn by Genevieve Grazis in the Beach Clip! ¬†How does this happen? ¬†Bobby, Kate, and the finder of this dress, Swing Sleuths¬†Jennifer Halsne, explain the wonderful story in the video below, including a demonstration! ¬†I got tingles listening to it – I love the hunt and I love the history!

SJC for Summer – Oviatt Polos and 1930’s Trousers

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

Oviatt+polo+on+shot+1+yellow

This yellow is coming home with me…

It’s a banner week – a new Trashy Diva print is coming out tomorrow and today I open up my Facebook feed to find that Simon James Cathcart has not only restocked his amazing vintage style bamboo fabric polos, there are even more colors (!!!) and he’s added these fantastic 1930’s trousers to the website!

Men and dapper ladies, let’s talk about these trousers – from the website: ¬†”

SJC has just woven 50mts of 16oz Cream English 100% wool flannel, so do not hang about here. This fluffy ecru coloured cloth is thick but soft and billows like the sails of a yacht in the breeze when one moves.

Crafted into a 1930’s loose cut trouser that features deep pleats, a wide leg and a high rise fit. ¬†The pants feature a button down coin pocket flap, side adjustors, sturdy pocket bags, sunburst corozo buttons, suspender buttons, deep fly front and belt loops.

sjc+navy+cream+look

They come in a long untailored length so you can add your own 2″ cuffs on them to suit.

Judging by the outstanding quality of the cloth,¬†the high desirability of the cut, the incredible price these pants will go fast.”

Have you had dreams of Fred Astaire’s wardrobe? ¬†This looks like a good step toward his day-wear. ¬†Pick from cream or gray fabric, then add striped socks and your desired footwear…

Chester Cordite – Modern Vintage Menswear

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

shirt-x-3-here-tester-copy

We should just start giving all our clothing money to the UK because I’m convinced this is where the giant hub of vintage reproduction clothing is located. ¬†Thanks to a Reddit thread about trying to find suits for swing dancing, I’m now hip to Chester Cordite, ¬†which offers “a¬†modern take on classic styles from the golden age of 1930s and 1940s, producing limited edition suits¬†and shirts¬†with¬†period influenced fabrics¬†at splendidly affordable prices and all suits made in England.” ¬†Chester Cordite got its start with that same frustration of not being able to find the right suits in good condition, and since necessity is the mother of invention, we have this company producing wonderful suits and shirts.

The suits are definitely custom, in gorgeous fabrics, perfect vintage-inspired cuts, and are fairly reasonably priced for custom work. ¬†On an even more accessible level are their spearpoint collar shirts, which will give you an immediate vintage look (compare to modern shirt collars) for only 60 pounds (roughly $75 as of the date of this post), about what you would spend for a shirt at a nice menswear store in the U.S. ¬†The shirts also come in an array of solid colors and stripes, which I love for dancers because most menswear-wearing dancers I know don’t commit to a jacket the whole night and it’s nice to have something classic other than a white dress shirt to complete your look. ¬†All of the suits and shirts are paired with vintage ties in photographs on the website to give you an idea of how your vintage look will work.

Here are some of my favorites from the website:

 

buchan-hopsack-sb3-ab-1_2

Just gorgeous – 3 piece suit with belt back, Buchan Hopsack

sb3-afb-1_3

This blue is a herringbone, yessssssss

sage-check-sb3-ab-1_2

Sage check front…

sage-check-sb3-ab-3

…and back!

1641701

Cement gray stripe spearpoint collar shirt.

____1401808458

Blue and black stripes for the spearpoint shirt.

 

 

 

Re-mix Now Offering Women’s Size 5

d6605d6d-42cd-40e9-87fe-7db791c7598eThis post was written by Lindy Shopper.

This will be a very brief post, but I felt it warranted a full-fledged Lindy Shopper post because I know it will make some people very happy – Re-mix Vintage Shoes is now offering U.S. women’s size 5 in the following styles: Anita, Balboa, Charleston, Emily¬† and Emily 2.0!¬† These are all popular styles for swing dancing, which I’m sure is more than a happy coincidence. ūüôā

Tranky Shoes

This post was written by Lindy Shopper.

15203375_697069690446382_3706674413560357965_n

GET IN MY CLOSET

So I basically can’t keep up with all the swing dancer-focused shoe companies popping up right now – the latest company to grab my attention is Tranky Shoes, which Jessica Bullock mentioned in response to a shoe question Gaby Cook posted on Facebook.¬† Their Facbook page is in Italian, Google translate has failed miserably to translate the text, and Facebook translate fared only slightly better, so I’m interested in hearing more about this shoe company.¬† Here’s what I can surmise from their Facebook page:

  • Based in Italy
  • There are green double strap Mary Janes that need to come home with me (sans the velvet bootie – can that happen?)
  • They are being sold at a bunch of European events
  • Handmade, leather upper, leather soles
  • For more information email trankyshoes@gmail.com

Tell me more, peeps!¬† Have you tried these shoes?¬† I want to hear all about them. ūüôā

15220182_696190270534324_8615613030040307953_n

An array of styles and colors.

15095567_694132650740086_6807995165861046830_n

Some Tranky Shoes men’s footwear designs.

Save