Category Archives: Retro

The Picton George IV Inn First Annual Rockabilly Festival

Image by Love Stories by Kate (previously Gaia Photography)

Image by Love Stories by Kate (previously Gaia Photography)

My hometown of Picton held its very first rockabilly festival last weekend. Held at the George IV Inn (one of the oldest pubs in New South Wales), the event was attended by a large and diverse crowd. Luckily, the day had clear, sunny skies after a week filled with gale force winds and rain. Overall, the event itself was a fun-filled day and a relative success for the first ever rockabilly festival in Picton, however there was some room for improvement for next year. Here’s my highlights and not-so-highlights from the day:


-Live Music: The Voodoo Rhythm Shakers, a Sydney-based rockabilly band were definitely the main reason behind the great atmosphere of the festival. The band held up a steady collection of rockabilly classics from Brian Setzer, the Stray Cats and much more with a strong-voiced female lead singer. Not only did these guys do a show at the inn the night before, but they also played for the majority of the festival held the following day. They were able to keep the dance floor open, and they didn’t stray from upbeat foot-tapping songs – there was never a ‘slow song’ to give the dancers (and the band) a break, so I do admire their stamina. I’d love to see these guys perform again at the festival in the future, and would love to see some other gigs they’re in!

-Great use of the layout of the George IV Inn: The inn itself has just been freshly renovated, with a big barn/shed area opened up. Because of this, they were easily able to accommodate a car show outside the back, a band at the front, markets and stalls around the sides of the inn and keep the inn itself relatively not too busy with the flow of crowds. Throughout the day, we were easily able to pop out back to the outside dining area to have a break and grab a few drinks and some food, which was very convenient.

-Free entry: Who doesn’t love free entry?! I’ve been to so many era-themed events recently, where an entry fee or participation charge was required (and it definitely was not worth it). So, it was really refreshing to have an event where anyone was welcome. The friendly feel and relaxed nature of the day may be a result of this.

-Family friendly (to an extent): there was lots of activities for the kids (well, enough that you can run outside of a pub), including face painting, colouring in competitions and temporary airbrushed tattoos. It can be hard to have many kid-friendly activities at an event held at a pub, however the kids present found many things to do to entertain themselves (including having a go on the dance floor). In future, I’d suggest that there be more things to get the kids involved – perhaps a kids ‘best dressed’ competition (or a better title…’pinup competition’ for kids is a bit inappropriate) would be a good idea!


-Not enough food options, and expensive food: as someone who suffers from coeliac disease, I was pretty disappointed to discover that unless you really liked bread and pizza, there weren’t many options for food. As the staff couldn’t guarantee that the hot chips were gluten-free, I had to take a chance and hope I didn’t get glutened after. Surely I wouldn’t have been the only person with issues in getting food at the event: anyone who was vegetarian, gluten intolerant or lactose intolerant may have had issues as well. That being said, what was on offer (other than food directly from the inn) was from one stall only – serving up hot dogs costing $10 made from the cheapest looking ingredients. I’d pay $10 for a decent Subway sandwich (if I could eat one), however this was definitely not worth the price that was being charged, and there weren’t any other choices available to patrons. However, due to the location of the inn, many food outlets were close by which could accommodate instead.

-Some parts of the day were poorly organised, particularly the Pinup Competition. The Pinup Competition had been advertised as commencing at 4:15pm, with interested contestants being told via the Facebook event page that they just needed to show up at the pageant to be able to enter. However, these ladies then discovered at the festival that ‘try outs’ and heats were taking place at 2pm on the day, without any advertisement of this happening. As a result, there were many ladies turning up to the pageant who were then told they could not enter. On top of this, many children entered the contest as well as there was no age limit or restrictions advertised: while I am happy for children to have a go at things, this wasn’t very appropriate as it was a ‘pinup’ contest advertised and aimed at an older audience, where all other contestants were older women. In fact, many adult contestants were knocked out in the heats due to the ‘cute factor’ of many children who entered. It has already been advised that there will be a separate category for children next year, which will be much more suitable (hopefully it’s just a ‘best dressed’ contest, rather than being ‘pinup’ themed). Also, the competition was judged based on audience approval alone, giving an unfair advantage to locals or many who had supportive friends come along. In future, there should be a combination of a designated judging panel, as well as audience participation.

-Not enough stalls and variety of stalls: I understand that it can be hard to have a large variety of stalls in the first year of a festival. Plus, when you’ve got limited space, you can only select a few stalls for the day or otherwise risk WHS issues. However, there really wasn’t that much variety in the stalls and shops on the day. Some of my favourite local sellers were there (which was amazing), but other than that, not many other stalls stood out with their products. In fact, many didn’t really align with the theme of the festival very well (or, they attempted to try and ‘fit in’ and didn’t really cut it). In future, hopefully the word gets out about the festival, with more peeps getting involved who are in the rockabilly culture and industry.

Overall thoughts

It was really fantastic being a part of the first rockabilly festival in my hometown. Having an alternative, classy and trendy themed festival become a part of where I grew up means that I’m pretty excited about where this festival will go over the next few years. It was a great ‘first go’ of the festival, however with better promotion, more diversity of the stalls involved and better organisation, the festival is surely going to become bigger and better than ever. Congrats to all who were involved on the day – can’t wait to see what’s in store next year!

This post was polished by Page & Parchment.

My Favourite Bloggers and Online Communities

As a casual/amateur blogger, I am always seeking to find inspiration and support through following some amazing people and communities. These blogs and websites continually motivate me to stay positive, be creative and also to go after what I am passionate about. I am so thankful for finding these incredible people, who I follow on a regular (sometimes daily) basis, and am happy to share them with you now!

In no particular order…

Frocks and Frou Frou

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Frocks and Frou Frou is the very first plus-size fashion blog I ever followed (back in 2009!). From the moment I found the blog through mutual friends on Facebook, I fell in love with blogger Lilli’s classic yet unique and quirky style. Being an Australian blogger based in Melbourne, Lilli also provides some fantastic feedback on purchasing from some of the major plus-size brands, as well as some easy-to-follow DIY projects. Her style of writing is friendly, informative and easy-to-read, and she has a very supportive fan following. For any of my plus-sized friends, I highly encourage you to follow Frocks and Frou Frou!

The Militant Baker

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If you’re looking for empowerment and positive body talk, this is the blog to follow. When I first discovered the diverse and supportive community of plus-sized bloggers, this is the blogger that they all mentioned as an inspiration. Jess now not only pursues her body positivity on a full-time basis, but also runs some epic conferences over in the US, which would be amazing to attend one day! In particular, the first post of Jess’ which I read (my favourite too) is this:

I highly recommend following Jess if you’re someone who is looking for a body-positive online community, as well as looking at how to love your body better: whether it be plus-size, average or skinny!

Offbeat Bride/Home

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If you’re getting married, I am now introducing you to the Mecca of resources. Offbeat Bride was the only blog/medium (they also have a book) that gave me realistic expectations for my wedding, and helped me plan a unique, affordable, quirky-yet-beautiful wedding. After unsuccessfully getting any inspiration through common bridal magazines (seriously…I only found a handful of weddings under $20, 000 in these magazines, which was ridiculous), it was such a godsend to discover this website. The community is HUGE, and the forums are incredible for finding DIY inspiration, advice and ideas. However, this website doesn’t just stop at weddings – they also have a massive section dedicated to life/living/home in general. The posts relate easily to everyday life (especially if you’re a crafty/arty/creative person), and you can easily find yourself spending hours on their sites gaining more and more ideas for future projects.

Gorilla Wolf  (check out their TwitchTV Channel here)

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My absolute go-to for anything gaming-related, Gorilla Wolf are probably the newest group of peeps I follow on a regular basis. Gorilla Wolf is run by Dom and James, who are aiming to make this their full-time pursuit. I discovered Gorilla Wolf through my husband when we started to watch video game streams on TwitchTV. After spending ages trawling through the channels to find an entertaining Zelda play-through, we found these guys doing such an entertaining job at Majora’s Marsk (they were terribly lost though, haha). What kept us watching these guys is their entertainment value, dedication to investigating and reporting on new games, and their massive commitment to making their chat and followers as engaging as possible. We watch their TwitchTV channel on a weekly basis, and are so excited to see where the future takes them. If you’re after good gaming commentaries and play-throughs online with a friendly fan following, check out these guys ASAP!

The Adventures of Modern June Cleaver and Amelia Jetson

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June and Amelia, two best friends run an amazing website which follows their retro and vintage-inspired fashion adventures. These two are my absolute inspiration when it comes to perfecting the vintage/retro look. They are such friendly and positive ladies too, and are willing to help out fellow retro fashion bloggers – they are so supportive and active on Instagram! Whenever these ladies share their outfits, they always link to each piece in their outfit, making it so easy to track down. These lovely ladies also host giveaways on their website from some incredible brands such as Erstwilder and Deer Arrow.

Gertie’s New Blog for Better Sewing

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This lady and her amazing blog have inspired me to try and re-start one of my favourite hobbies from when I was younger: sewing. When I discovered her blog, little did I know that she also had a book. Within minutes of discovering her blog, I also found myself purchasing her first book, and I now also own her second book based on casual vintage. Gertie has a way of explaining her sewing projects in an easy-to-follow manner, and always includes pictures in her steps (I tend to get lost when following sewing instructions, so this is hugely helpful!) Gertie also creates patterns sold through Butterick, and also shares these through her blog. Her passion for sewing, as well as seeing the projects of her followers, makes this blog a fantastic creative outlet for those wishing to get some much-needed inspiration. She’s made me start the adventure of sitting with my sewing machine and tackling some long-awaited projects!

Who do you look to online for inspiration? Feel free to share your thoughts 🙂

This post was polished by Page & Parchment.

Week 2 Update, 2015


Week 2 of 2014! I can’t believe how quickly this year is going so far! Here’s what I’ve been up to over the past week:

-I’m pretty sure I’ll be posting my weekly updates on a Monday night. This is to ensure I can provide up-to-date results from my Curves Complete program (I have my weigh-in and coaching on Monday afternoons), and gives me more time to reflect over the week.

-My leg ulcer has been playing up big-time this week. I managed to roll my ankle when trying to walk to the gym (I ended up not going to the gym), and hurt my ulcer in the process. I haven’t been in this much pain from it for almost a year. Because of this, I think the pain is mostly because of the heat and humidity, with sweat and walking around so much putting a lot of pressure on my wound. Plus, having it become more painful from my tumble really doesn’t help. It’s pretty frustrating, as it means I’ve barely been able to get my step goals this week. But I have to listen to my body, especially if it’s obvious that I need to take it easy.

-As per the above, Curves Complete program progress this week was been very slow. As I injured myself, I had to take it easy this week. However, even though I haven’t been able to get my 10,000 steps a day or hit the gym as much as I had hoped to, I’ve kept to my water intake and stuck to the meal plan relatively well. I’ve managed to also gain some Fitbit friends (anyone with a Fitbit is welcome to add me!), who have been smashing their step goals, so I’ve got some inspiration once I am able to walk more regularly again. With all of the above, I ended up putting on a couple of hundred grams this week due to needing to rest my leg and not exercising. My coaches agreed that I made the right decision in taking it easy, as it’s important to ensure that “long-term me” has a healed ulcer and normally working ankle/foot. We’ve set some goals for this year, however, with the major goal being to stay healthy and keep my diabetes in excellent control, and an aim to try and lose 10 kilos overall (I got quite close to this last year until I got sick/got injured, so it will be interesting to see if I meet this).

-This week, I’ve struggled with staying positive on occasions. I’ve noticed that when I’m feeling bored or unmotivated (which has been happening a lot during the day lately), I tend to view it negatively. It makes me think that what I’m doing isn’t important or of value because I’m not feeling challenged or enthusiastic, therefore put myself in a spiral of feeling bad about myself. However, my husband suggested that rather than using this time to build up negative thoughts, I could try and focus on making it a positive: having the down-time to think of ideas, inspiration and goals. So, I’ve been trying to refocus at times where I’ve started to become bored or feeling useless, and using this time to think of ideas towards my positive goals that have been set for 2015. It’s going to take some time to adjust to using this time in a positive manner, but I’m going to work on it!

-I managed to complete reading Lena Dunham’s Not that kind of Girl this week. Overall, it’s a good read: I felt I connected well with the author, and it was very amusing and an easy read. It wasn’t as inspirational as some of the other books I’ve read recently, but it was a book I enjoyed reading. This week, I’m going to read the Secret History of Wonder Woman by Jill Lepore.

-After receiving some belated birthday present contributions, I finally took the plunge this week and did something I’ve wanted to do for ages: buy some vintage styled underwear. I’ve been eyeing off Rago’s longline bras for forever, as so many plus-sized bloggers swear by them for comfort and fit, and they also assist with posture (I have terrible posture sometimes thanks to years as a musician and an above-average sized chest area). They’re wire-free too, however seem to be known as having much better support than normal underwire bras…plus they’re the same type that the actresses wear on Mad Men and are so adorable. It’s going to be good to see how they go with my outfits, and I hope that I’ve gotten the right sizes as I had to order from the US!

That’s about it for this week. Later this week, I’ll be putting up an article about my new-found obsession with tea. Thanks for reading! 🙂

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Summer Shopping Lust List

Since celebrating Christmas and my Birthday, I’m now eagerly eyeing off some items to help vamp up my wardrobe (in an attempt to make my wardrobe full of things I’ve always wanted to wear, but never had the confidence to try). Here’s what is currently on my “to buy as soon as possible” list:

”1932” 1960s inspired silvertone pen necklace:


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I love Joan Holloway. She is my style icon, and I wish I could look like her…heck, be her. In fact, recently I’ve realised that with my administrative roles at work, I sort-of could be the “Joan” of our small team (this really helps me stay positive, believe it or not, haha). Ever since I saw Joan’s pen necklace, I knew I had to have one. Luckily the company that made the necklace she wore, 1932 has released a whole collection of pen necklaces. As goldtone stuff doesn’t really work with my skin colouring, I was overjoyed to discover they released a silvertone version. The pen actually works too, and you can purchase ink refills for only $1 USD. The necklace is only $20 USD, which is very affordable!

-Lucite/Resin Earrings and Jewellery

I can’t believe I haven’t gotten on board with resin jewellery sooner. Since joining Instagram, I’ve found some amazing individuals who create retro inspired resin jewellery. My favourite designers so far include Dazzalite, Glamourlite (an awesome Australian company!), Desperate Beatnik and the Alamo Basement

So far, these are the pair I desperately would like to have from Glamourlite:


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-More Erstwilder brooches and jewellery

If you’ve been on my Instagram at all this year, you’ll see that I’m usually wearing one of my Erstwilder brooches with outfits that I feature. I love how quirky and cute the brooches are, and how easily they can jazz up any outfit. I plan to keep accessorising this year, and hope to grow my collection of Erstwilder. Currently, these are the items I am obsessed about getting as soon as possible (you’ll notice that they’re all foxes…no coincidence, haha):


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I would highly recommend purchasing Erstwilder through the lovely Vintage Pip or Coconette, as both are amazing sellers with great customer service and a huge range of cute products!

-A pair of vintage styled denim capris

It’s summer in Australia, and whilst I can live in skirts and dresses, I do need some decent pants/shorts. I have been eyeing off the capris offered through Tatyana Boutique and the Collectif Monroe jeans. I really can’t decide which of the two would look better…so I may have to end up getting both. Which pair do you prefer?

Monroe Cropped Jeans Blue

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Tatyana (image from )


I love shoes. Unfortunately, as someone with foot issues (thanks diabetes) including being quite flat footed, wearing orthotics occasionally and having wide feet, it’s hard for me to find good retro/pinup shoes which are comfy. I’ve had to settle for flats, or very expensive heels with a myriad of support in them. However, of recent, some of the amazing ladies I follow on Instagram have been showing off the shoes offered by the brands Miss L Fire and B.A.I.T and raving about their comfort factor. I am definitely now hooked on getting some shoes for my collection from these stores. At present, I am eyeing off the following sandals (I barely have any summer appropriate footwear!)



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Heart of Haute Constellation Skirt


Last but not least, I’ve been eyeing off some more skirts to add to my collection of “epic skirts to wear with a poofy petticoat” collection. I saw pictures of this skirt on Instagram and knew I had to get it. It was after finding where to buy the skirt online, I then discovered that the stars GLOW IN THE DARK. Therefore, the skirt is now on the top of my list of clothing items to buy. This is so epic.

Lots of pretty things to save up for, it seems! What are you eyeing off this summer (or winter, depending on which hemisphere you’re in)? 🙂