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Thursday, December 8, 2016

My Dream Party-Cinema Spotlight on Star Trek The Original Series Journey to Babel

Now despite the title of the post I actually hate parties.   I'm extremely shy and rather socially awkward and basically my ideal of hell is a cocktail party filled with people unfamiliar to me.  Even family parties make me nervous.  However, I love looking at vintage pictures of Holiday parties.  The more pedestrian the party the better.

These people look quite happy, or at least tipsy.

I love the tinsel on the tree here.

The dress on the girl on the left is just divine.

I love this guys shirt or whatever it is he is wearing.
However, there is only one party I'd like to attend and it is a fictional one, and unsurprisingly it is from the Star Trek universe.

I mean how fabulous is this party!
The episode is one from the original series second season, Journey to Babel, it aired in 1967 and the fabulous colorful kitschiness of the 60s is all over it.  The plot involves the Enterprise hosting a gathering of alien diplomats, including Spock's father, not all of whom have benign intentions.  The story is clever and well done, but what  I love most about the episode is the costume and set design.  William Ware Theiss, Star Trek's first costume designer, who I wrote about here, outdid himself in this episode.  

Usually Theiss's designs where emblematic of the swinging 60s and rather skimpy, focusing viewer attention on ample amounts of alien skin, but as this episode basically deals with an intergalactic U.N. summit the costumes are more covered up and Theiss had lots of fun with fabrics, colors, and trims.   I love every single outfit!

The Vulcans are very covered up and regal.  Lady Amanda Spock's human mother arrives in a vest over some sort of 60s column dress with a huge stand up collar.  My favorite touch is the elbow length gloves.   I also love Sarek's, Spock's vulcan father, military inspired tunic.

Sarek has some nice brocade on his party outfit:

But being a Vulcan it's still for Star Trek at least a rather subdued look.  Lady Amanda being a human gets to have more fun with her clothes.  Like the Vulcan's she is covered up and elegant, but there are plenty of fun touches.  Her party outfit is a psychedelic 60s caftan:

And later she wears a high necked red dress with pink marabou feather trim on the sleeves.

The Vulcan's are just the tip of the costuming ice berg in the episode though.  There is the pig people race, they seem to love shiny fabrics, 

and the little gold people in fezzes. I love the look of the cocktails they are carrying, are those some sort of futuristic gum drop ice cubes?
There are also tons of colorfully costumed extras in the background.  Each more outrageously attired then the last.

The only alien race with slightly boring costumes are the blue skinned Andorians who are wearing chain mail with leather vests.  They are kind of the bad guys of the episode though so maybe Theiss thought they should dress down.  

The Star Fleet dress uniforms on Kirk, Spock and McCoy are my favorite of all the costumes. I love, love, love the gold braid.

The set design in the party scene is also amazing I am obsessed with the psychedelically colored fruit and the brightly colored squares, I guess they are ice cubes?  And the decanters filled with futuristic cocktails.

I even have the perfect outfit to wear to this party if only I could go!  My Mexican Patio Set it even has the gold braid and everything!

Seriously though, I just love this image of a bright, colorful, and diversely costumed future.   So much better then the functional, drab, and boring direction that fashion is heading.  

Monday, December 5, 2016

Around Town: Fry's Trip to the Jersey City Holiday Market

Living  in the city as we do holiday markets are a big thing.  We used to go into Manhattan to the Union Square Holiday Market, but now there is no need too.  As legions of New Yorkers have been priced out of Manhattan and the boroughs, they have crossed the river to NJ and Jersey City, where we live, is becoming the 6th borough.  This has meant a glut of new restaurants and stores and events.  One cool new thing is Project Market,  a bi-monthly outdoor market with food vendors and artists.  

This past weekend Project Market had their biggest market of the year, the Holiday market.  We biked down town with Fry in his basket to check it out.  Fry is currently our best bicycling dog and I really should have gotten a picture of him on the bike.   (Incidentally we have been seriously considering going car free which would mean investing in some different pet bike trailers for the other dogs.  We rarely drive and I love the idea of being car free, except for occasional rentals, if we can figure out how to manage it. Luckily we are two blocks from our vet.  Not only is biking it better for the environment, it saves money, and is great exercises.  My husband is really passionate about biking.)

Fry after his  bike ride.

The market was pretty big and Fry was maybe a little overwhelmed.

We tried S'mores hot chocolate with a gingersnap cookie rim and fried Wisconsin cheese curds.   I didn't get a picture of the curds but they were delicious.

There were tons of stands, more then I could photograph:

My favorite stand was unsurprisingly, the vintage one.  They had a cute collection of vintage valentine cards:

 and some fun poodle things,   I bought the 1950s poodle book ends.

The one thing the market was missing was dog treats!  I was pretty disapointed.  We made it up to Fry by giving him part of a donut from the Italian bakery, so he was happy.

All in all we had a great time at the market, and I love my new book ends.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Winter Wonderland-A Vintage Outfit Post

Which means it is time for one of my favorite holiday traditions, seasonal dressing.  Christmas sweaters, novelty prints, festive jewelry, I love it all.  That is why when I saw the Bernie Dexter Veronique dress in Winter Wonderland print on super sale last May I had to snap it up even if it meant I'd be waiting a looong time to wear it.  This dress has been hanging in my closet for 6 months and I've been itching to wear it, but I'm a stickler for waiting for the right season for an outfit, so I didn't put it on until  Thanksgiving, but Oh My Gosh was it ever worth the wait! I love it!

It makes me feel like I'm living in a snow globe, even if I'm just standing on my grubby urban porch.

The print is just too beautiful

and the cut is very flattering.  I ordered my usual size in Bernie Dexter, large.  It's maybe a little big on me in the waist and chest, but nothing terrible, and I like a bit of wiggle room.

I paired the dress with a 1960s sequin cardigan

and a hair flower from Chatter Blossom.  Jamie made the flower to match the dress and she did a perfect job.

I also added one of my petticoats from Amazon to make the most of the full 50s style skirt and I wore my 1950s style Baby Doll pumps from Remix Vintage Shoes.  These shoes are surprisingly comfortable for high heels.

You may ask where did I wear this fancy Holiday outfit?  The answer no where special.  I've worn it twice so far once to get Bubble tea and once to the movie theatre to see Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (very good by the way and it has a pug in it!).   I'll definitely keep wearing it.  After all Christmas comes but once a year and we aught to make the most of it!

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Kitschmas Decorating (And a Review of The Vermont Country Store Tinsel Tree)

I may never achieve my dream of a mid century home perfectly decorated for Christmas:

but I still enjoy decorating my urban home for the Holidays every year.   I generally collect much more vintage clothing then I do knick knacks and home wares, but over the years I have gathered a sizable collection of kitschy vintage holiday stuff.  In fact in our home I say we celebrate Kitschmas.  

The number one Kitschmas requirement is of course a tree in a color never found in nature: pink, white, or silver.   I've been in love with such trees every since I saw Edward Scissorhand's at age 12 and begged my horrified mother for a tinsel tree, she said no.

As soon as I grew up and got my own home I bought a vintage 1960s tinsel tree.  I loved that tree:

Sadly though it lost more and more tinsel each year until it had sizable bald patches and I began to worry about the dogs or cats ingesting shedded tinsel.  So last year I tossed it. 

 At first I planned to buy another vintage tree but in my research I learned lights on vintage aluminum trees are a major fire hazard (obviously I hadn't known that).  So I decided to go with the Vermont Country Store's reproduction tinsel tree that is pre-lit and fire safe.  The tree retails for for 170 dollars in the 6 foot option and ships quickly with no extra charge.  

Initially when I opened the box I was a little disapointed because the trees material is very different from the 1960s original, but then that is probably why it is fire safe.


Once I got it up and decorated though it started to grow on  me.  Silver is the perfect background for Star Trek ornaments and I have a lot of those (we celebrate Trekmas in our house too.)  My latest ornament is the Gorn Captain, I got it at the Star Trek Convention in Cherry Hill and I gave it a prominent spot on the tree.  Nothing like Christmas with the Gorn.

I have a lot of talking Star Trek Hallmark keepsake ornaments that John has gotten me over the years too and I never tire of listening to them.  The Tribble one is my favorite.

I have some mid century blown glass ornaments too.  I just got this little pipe cleaner angel on a pink ball for a dollar.

I had to take a selfie with the tree when I had finished decorating it.  You can see some of the blown glass ornaments I inherited from my mother in law.  

Once I saw the tree lit I had no more doubts.  I love it!  It's really, really bright.  

The color wheel is from Vermont Country store too.  I reviewed it here.  

Isn't it pretty?

Of course the tree is just one part of the Kitschmas decorating.  I had to put up the dog and cat stockings.

 and my 1950s punch bowl and Christmas corsages, and I have a lot of mid century greeting cards.

On the mantle I displayed most of my cards and my Christmas albums.  

I was so excited when John got me this Colonel Sanders album, I had wanted it for years.

The card on the end was made for me by a former student, my favorite ever.  I almost cried when I found it.

I also have a 1960s Christmas Dream Pet poodle, its so cute I want to leave it up all year.

My all time favorite decoration though is my geeky garland, its my one and only somewhat successful crafting attempt. 

Three years ago used photo shop to make myself cards form all of my favorite shows.  I posted about it here.   Talk about geeky!

What are your favorite Holiday decorations?

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