Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Vintage Winter Warmers

There is nothing like good old fashioned home comforts when it's cold outside.  Who can resist the warmth and cheeriness of a real log fire?  Imagine sitting at the fireside, snuggled up in a comfy chair, wearing a homemade knitted jumper, cuddling a hot water bottle, with a granny blanket swaddled around you and a nice warming cup of tea or hot chocolate and toasted teacakes on a tray.  Sound good to you?  Well here are some ideas to get you started on this picture of bliss! (If you haven't got a log fire, then here's an open coal fire to keep you warm this winter.  (With thanks to Flock 92 Productions).

Here at Vintiquery we love textiles, especially ones that look and feel good.  Wool is a versatile and natural material and we adore old fashioned blankets, especially ones in pretty colours, or with romantic flower designs.  Welsh blankets and Scottish tartan blankets, can be very colourful and double up in the summer as picnic blankets.  

Vintage English & Spanish Blankets

In the winter months it's time to get the knitting needles out and make some lovely woolly items!  If you've never knitted before, it is really easy and once you start, you will soon be inspired to upgrade your skills from knitting a simple scarf to a pretty 1950s style twin set.  There is a wonderful sense of achievement in making something for yourself or your home.  We are currently knitting hundreds of squares to make a huge granny blanket and love these retro turquoise plastic knitting needles.

 As soon as the granny blanket is complete, we thought it would be fun using a vintage knitting pattern to make an item of clothing.  At the present time we are trying to decide whether to make the Jaeger jacket/cardigan, or the His and Hers matching cardigans! Using modern wool there could be a very interesting result!!! We'd love to know if you've used retro knitting patterns to make a modern garment and if it was successful or not.

These vintage knitting patterns are a reminder of the days when Mum would knit clothes for all her family and Granny would knit Christening shawls, blankets, cushions and slippers! They look pretty old fashioned now, but are a cheap and cheerful way of creating a bespoke vintage item of clothing, either true to the pattern, or with a contemporary twist by using modern yarn.

We mentioned the good old fashioned hot water bottle, still popular today as a means of keeping warm.  We've found some pretty vintage style and woolly hot water bottle covers for added cosiness.  Which one would you choose? 

Years ago a warm winter's coat would have been an expensive item and therefore the same coat would have been worn for many years. There's something about wearing a heavy wool coat that takes you back to childhood, when you would have had a "best coat".  A winter's coat is still a great investment and vintage is much more affordable, better quality and best of all you can find something really unusual and unique.  Our Vintiquery Team have chosen their favourite vintage coats.

Fabulous show-stopping 1970s style full length cashmere maxi coat, it really has the wow factor and is much admired by fans of Barbie, Lady Penelope and Legally Blonde!

 Oh-so-retro 1980s calf length wool coat, Santa red with black velvet trimmings. Very Dynasty/Dallas with padded shoulders and great tailoring.
 This absolutely adorable handmade 1950s wool swing coat in fabulous fleck with vintage purple shiny buttons is so amazing the photo does not do it justice.  A happy find from the vintage heaven that is Beyond Retro  My Nan used to have a coat very similar and always wore a blue brooch on it, as all self respecting ladies used to do! Brooches are the perfect finishing touch to a winter's coat and we have found just the right brooches to go with our coats.

 Is it a coat? Or is it a cardigan? Or even a jacket? Whatever it is this truly quirky unique coat is a great talking point.  Much admired and swooned over, the wearer is guaranteed attention! This wool coat from designer Critical Mass was a lucky find hunting through rails of vintage clothes in St Nicholas' Market, Bristol.  It has a French and a Vivienne Westwood feel to it.  Our stylists found the perfect snood scarf and clutch bag to match it, just what we love, a mix of textiles all from the same palette!

 Vintiquery is a bit of a magpie's nest when it comes to jewellery, we just can't resist anything shiny, sparkly or bling-bling! We will write more about our treasure trove of jewellery, but in the meantime, here are our coats with a brooch chosen to be the perfect accompaniment to each.
Pretty Pink Pearl surrounded by Diamante.
Floral Aurora Borealis glass stones reflecting all the colours in the coat.
Swirls of silver metal, surrounded by tiny black and silver crystals in a silver frame. French Marie Antoinette Style.

Black metal, margasites and seed pearls, surrounding a large oval pearl.
We hope that we have inspired you to keep warm this winter, with these vintage ideas. 

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