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Beauty & Style

Velvet Cave – Garden Of My Mind SS17

Velvet Cave Garden of my Mind

I’ve been obsessed with Velvet Cave for awhile now. Based in the UK, this independent shop is the perfect mix of stunning vintage finds and handmade designs inspired by the 60s & 70s. Primarily lush velvets, I can’t get enough of their aesthetic.

All handmade items are made to order with the ability to customize – perfect for short girls like me to be able to choose my desired inseam or dress length!

Shot by Alice Barnes, the ‘Garden Of My Mind SS17‘ lookbook a evokes dreamy vintage vibes wonderfully showcasing this badass collection. Below are a few of my favourite images, you can view the full ‘Garden Of My Mind SS17‘ lookbook and others here.

Gold Dust MiniVelvet Cave SS17Eden Floral Velvet Top & Shorts Co-ord SetAnd following are a few of my favourite handmade pieces from Velvet Cave:Velvet Cave favesIncense for the Damned Paisley Velvet Bell Bottoms | Gold Dust Velvet Gold Lace Bell Sleeve Mini Dress | Sirius Crushed Velvet Zip Bell Bottoms

Velvet Cave Sabbath Dress

Sabbath Lace Up Velvet Bell Sleeve Mini Dress available in Garnet, Emerald, or Onyx.

All Photos: Velvet Cave
Photographer: Alice Barnes
Models: Emily Wood & Gemma Edwards
Stylist: Imogen Shurey

Beauty & Style

Grit N Glory’s Scream Queens

Grit N Glory Scream Queens

Grit N Glory’s Scream Queens Collection has been out for awhile now but still warrants sharing in case you haven’t seen these spooky shredders before.

Originally designed by tattoo artist extraordinaire Megan Massacre as flash, the artwork now features on black ultra soft, reverse stitch muscle tees with this exclusive Grit N Glory collection.

My personal favourites are Morticia & Lydia (man what is it with Winona and those red dresses!? Just LOVE!)

Lily & Vampira Scream Queens Shredders Lydia Scream Queens Shredder Tee Morticia & Wednesday Addams ShreddersShop the whole Scream Queens collection now at Grit N Glory.

Grit N Glory Scream Queen Shredders

Beauty & Style

Alternative Black Friday Sales 2016

Alternative Black Friday Shopping

In keeping with last years round up of Alternative Black Friday Sales, might I present to you my list of Alternative Black Friday Sales for 2016.

Compiling these lists really shows to me how much option we have out there. Many small businesses are also taking part once again in the Wild Unknown’sGood Karma Movement‘, donating a portion of their sales to a charity of their choosing. I’d highly recommend also checking out that shop list in detail too and supporting those businesses!

Alternative Black Friday Sales

under the pyramids From Friday 11/25 to Monday 11/28 save 15% off all orders with code: BLACKPYRAMIDS15

Mathyld has also joined the GOOD KARMA SALE movement and will be giving 10% of this weekends sales to Lyme Sans Frontières and Peta France.

April Leino Save 20% on orders now through Sunday November 27 with discount code: NOVEMBER20

Elemental Child All ⚡️Curved Air⚡️and ⚡️Light of the Stars⚡️raw Quartz point crowns are marked down on the website until midnight tonight, EST.

Cat Coven now until Monday night 15% off with code: FEAST

As well Cat Coven will be donating 10% of sales during this time to the Batten Disease Support and Research Association.

LVNEA 20% off all orders until 11/28 with code: BLACKFOREST

PLUS LVNEA will be donating 10% of all orders placed during this time to Sacred Stone Camp.

Alison Scarpulla 40% off all prints now – Monday, using code: ThankYou

10% of all sales this weekend will go directly to Standing Rock as well.

nyxturna now through Monday 11/28 get 25% OFF on all purchases with code: DARKNESS

nyxturna will also be continuing to donate a portion of each purchase to the warriors protecting the land and protesting the DAPL at Standing Rock.

Morph Knitwear Everything is 25% off through December 1 with code: STANDING

An additional 25% of each order is being donated to Standing Rock.

Rock N Roll Bride are giving away back issues of Rock N Roll Bride Magazine for FREE! There’s no code, just click the link and order.

Ancient Hearts Now through Monday, Nov 28th you get 25% off all items with code: AncientFriday

Dajana Heremic Friday through Saturday, Nov 26th all items have a 10% Discount with code: WINTERISHERE

Gypsy Warrior Now through 11/29 get 30% off everything with code: BLACKFRIDAY

Spell and the Gypsy Collective 30% off selected styles now through Monday, Nov 28th Midnight AEDT with code: BLACKFRIDAY30

Burke and Hare Co now through Monday 30% off your purchase with code: BLVCK3

Babe Coven 30% off everything now through Monday with the code: BLACK30

Black Moon Cosmetics 30% off all shades Black Friday 12:01 PST through Cyber Monday 11:59 PST – no code necessary.

Poison Apple Printshop this Friday and through Monday 20% off with code: FROST **Does not include The Hedge Witch’s Herbal Grimoire**

Souvenir Jewelry Save 20% off with code: BLACKOUT

Bill Crisafi now through Monday everything is 30% off with the code: 30black

ᗞEANDRI 20-50% off everything no codes required

Glitter and the Moon 40% off on all robes, bed jackets & french knickers now till midnight GMT 11/28 with code: blackfriday40

SOVRIN now through Monday 11/28 get 20% off with code: WINTERSNOW

Ovate Now until 29th November 20% OFF all clothing and accessories with code: 20off

Inner Decay now through 11/28 get 15% off with code: ALLDECAY

Crown & Glory 20% off everything for this weekend only till 11/28 with code: BLACKFRIDAY

Straight to Hell Apparel Get 20% off, ending Midnight Central standard time on 11/27 using code: BLACKFRI

Fiendies Now through 11/28 get 20% off all spirit boards and planchettes with code: YULETIDE20

Blackhorne Now through Monday take 20% off everything with code: ALLBLACK

Bloody Mary Metal 20% off everything with code: SPENDINGLIKEIMRICH

Maude Nibelungen 25% off storewide through Friday – use code: BLACKFRIDAY2016

Pale Tree Arcana Save 20% off your order of $60 or more now through Monday November 28th at midnight Central time. Use code: FridayNoir

Burial Ground Until Saturday 11/26 get 25% off your jewelry order with the code: Grimoire

Beauty & Style

Doll Parts: Courtney Love X Nasty Gal’s Second Collection

Courtney Love of Hole

Courtney Love was one of my earliest style icons. I was a huge Hole fan, and very much part of the Grunge and Riot Grrrl scene during its heyday. A lover of costume and vintage clothing, it’s easy to see why Love’s aesthique really appealed and resonated with me back then.

I still remember the thrill of finding similar vintage baby doll dresses as worn in the “Live Through This” years when I was a 90’s teenager visiting the UK. Portabello Road, Camden and the sadly long gone Kensington Market in London were absolute treasure troves to dress my restless suburban self.

Such finds now can be harder (and more expensive) to come by, so it was an absolute treat when Courtney Love’s Collection with Nasty Gal launched last January. With its mix of baby dolls, satin slips and crystal tiara’s its no surprise it sold out so quickly.

So I’m super excited to see that Love is soon launching a second collection with Nasty Gal on November 3rd.

While there are still nods to the iconic baby doll dress, Vogue says it best when these describe this collection as a “transhistorical reimagining“. It’s still feels like 90’s Love, but there’s an evolution with its rich velvets, hand beading and “a kind of Jim Morrison pirate blouse,” as Courtney calls it.

From the collection previews I’ve seen so far, the vibe is total Rock N Roll Witchery which I’m loving.

GAH. Hi. Take my money!

You can sign up for exclusive access to Nasty Gal’s x Courtney Love’s latest collection now.

And here are a few of my favourite pieces (so far):

Courtney Love x Nasty Gal - Black Pirate TopCourtney Love x Nasty Gal - Velvet Baby Doll DressCourtney Love x Nasty Gal - Velvet Frock CoatCourtney Love x Nasty Gal - Pirate TopCourtney Love x Nasty Gal - Leopard Print Coat

Beauty & Style

Hit the Pool – Vacation Swimwear

Hit the pool

We’ve slowly been packing up the house for the upcoming move, so I took the opportunity to go through my wardrobe again while doing so. With an upcoming girlie trip to Vegas in June, I decided to try on my old swimsuits in advance and I’m glad I did because – Boobsapoppin. ARGH. They fit *everywhere* perfectly except in the bust, so time to try and find some new swimwear.

I hate shopping for swimwear. And not because of any supposed body issues but just because the whole process is so awkward and uncomfortable. I always find myself falling over in the change room or panicking as I somehow get myself stuck in a swimsuit or any number of cringe worthy Seinfeldesque type scenarios.

The options at the local mall here are pretty slim but I decided to give it a go.

The first place I headed caters to an age demographic probably 10 years younger than I, but they have nice stuff with a bohemian/beachy vibe so what the hell. I found several different options, off to the change room I went and so the pain began.

Again nothing fit, their cuts were too young and apparently for women without boobs it would seem. I think I shocked the sales girl – who most definitely was born AK (After Kurt) – when she came back a third time to “see how I was doing and whether I needed a different size”, I flat out told her my tits were escaping all the swimsuits and that I had the largest size, so no go.

Cue tumbleweed and awkward “Oh, uh, uhm ok” from said sales girl.

I was dying with laughter at this inside the change room while simultaneously wanting to launch the bikini’s into the air sling shot style. But I’m Canadian so of course didn’t do this.

Onto several other shops, equally frustrating and no luck. The final place I hit I knew catered to more mature women so I excepted would have cuts suited to bustier figures, but the styles and designs were beyond matronly and I’m not dead yet so I finally exited the mall, accepting the ‘Faily McFail Fail’ of the day.

To the interwebs then…

I decided after trawling through reviews to try an Esther Williams swimsuit. ModCloth currently have a promo on now for 30% off all bathing suits – Use Code SUNDERFUL (Ends 05/19 @ 9 am EST) and they stock a ton of different Esther Williams swimwear so I ordered from them.

I haven’t received my order yet, but will post a review later on once it arrives – I picked up an Esther Williams Bikini as well as a one-piece. Hopefully both are awesome, but at this stage I’d be happy if just even one of them worked. Fingers crossed!

I tend to like prints for my swimwear – not exactly the most goth – but give me a floppy hat and a margarita poolside any day! Here are a few of the Esther Williams one-piece swimsuits I’m  currently digging.

Vacation Swimwear

Vacation Swimwear - Beach Blanket Bingo One-Piece Swimsuit Vacation Swimwear - Modcloth One Piece Swim Suits1. Polka Dot Beach Blanket Bingo One-Piece Swimsuit  2. Midnight Garden Bathing Beauty One-Piece Swimsuit 3. Tropical Bathing Beauty One-Piece Swimsuit 4.Swirls Bathing Beauty One-Piece Swimsuit

Photo Credit: ModCloth

**This post contains affiliate links. This is not a sponsored post. For more on this please see my disclaimer.**

Beauty & Style

Gypsy Warrior Review

YRU Laso Boots from Gypsy Warrior

I was first introduced to Gypsy Warrior a few years ago by a work colleague with killer style. I’ve followed the company ever since – part professional interest (back when I was an E-Commerce Manager) and part personal interest – but had never ordered from them previously.

I’m always a bit nervous with online ordering from a company whose fit are an unknown to me, regardless of all the detailed size charts or what have you. But a recent “Curvy Warrior” blog post on Gypsy Warrior caught my attention and I decided to hazard an order.

And I’m very glad I did!

Confession time – as soon as I get home I strip off and jump into jammies. This isn’t a new thing, hell my friends at Uni used to call me ‘Jim-Jam-Jamie’ because of this. I don’t know what it is, but something about getting home, into my own house, makes me want to launch my bra across the room and fling my jeans out the door.

Subsequently because we’ve become homebodies living out of the city, I’ve been in my jammies a lot more and it’s been making me feel kind of down for being so sloppy (yes I know I could easily put my bra and jeans back on but honestly screw that). SO! I’ve been on the look out for comfortable weirdo stuff to wear at home. Enter stage left Gypsy Warrior’s joggers and muscle tanks.

I’m curvy and spanning the L-XL-1X clothing range these days so really had no idea how I’d fare with ordering all Larges for the following:

Gypsy Warrior Haul

Snake Eye Joggers | To The Extreme Hi Low Top | Laso Harness Bootie | Hell Bound Muscle Tank

But everything worked out excellently. For reference, I’m normally an XL, these Larges fit fine!

Also, I’m not really a fashion blogger, as you can probably tell:

Not a Fashion BloggerGypsy Warrior Clothing Review

Anyway – the muscle tank and joggers fit perfectly – ridiculously comfortable and weirdo-rific with no sense of wearing jammies. The Hi Lo Top is great to wear over sleeveless dresses so as to be work appropriate and cover tattoos. And I can’t squee enough over the YRU Laso Booties which are vegan and hella comfy as well. I range between a size 7-8 as I have wide feet, and I ordered an 8 and these fit excellently.

Vegan YRU Laso BootsGypsy Warrior Snake Eyes Joggers

The joggers do tend to attract a ton of cat hair (but whatever), the fit’s great, love the design and no complaints. Overall, an excellent experience, love the products, great customer service and quick international shipping (I’m in Canada). I’ll be ordering for sure again in future! And this is *not* a sponsored post, I paid for these products with my hard earned loonies! So top marks for Gypsy Warrior – and keep at it with the fantastic Curvy Warrior posts, they’re stellar!

Gypsy Warrior Relaxed Style

Beauty & Style

Folk Florals In Bloom

Folk Florals Vest

I’ve always been drawn to odd florals, often embroidered, often vintage, and often treading a fine line as to whether they were garish or not. The same thing as well with weird patterns and prints. I have a shirt (at least I think I still do) buried somewhere deep in storage from the 70’s that I LOVE. It’s quite hideous to most eyes (ok really all) but I love it to death. It’s slinky and feels cool on the skin and looks like something Billy Corgan would have worn in 1993. It’s also several nauseating shades of green, brown and white in an incredible zig zag pattern that looks like some sort of psychedelic double mint gum packaging; the kind that would have been pulled from the shelves for inducing seizures upon opening to it’s minty delights. That kind of top.

But of all the pieces of clothing that have rotated through my never-ending wardrobe, my favourite was a folk florals dress. It was a 70’s vintage find with an empire waist and long sleeves. The cuffs and the neckline were an array of folk florals embroidery, and the dress itself was long and made of a lush, rich blue velvet – soft and bright (or maybe it was velveteen given that it wasn’t very thick). I had to wear it with platforms because I’m a hobbit and also was too inept as a teenager to have it taken up. I remember my boyfriend at the time *hating* it with a passion. It only made me wear it more. I loved it and how it made me feel like some wild witch-fairy queen.

Over time I stopped wearing much colour (or any really). Shying away from things I liked for fear of not conforming to my chosen subculture. In hindsight, aligning myself to a subculture didn’t set these limitations. Sure they’re present, but you can always choose to ignore such things; I just opted not to.

Colours other than black are starting to make their way back into my closet. It’s been a bit of a trial and error as I figure out how to blend in decidedly goth elements with these eclectic pieces. My fear is looking like a cracked out children’s performer with some of the clothing I’m drawn to. But I suppose that’s part of the process with evolving style. Or hey maybe I can start a side business as Kranky-the-Klown. Anyway! Here are a few things I’ve stumbled upon as of late…


Folk Florals Embroidered Tassel Maxi Dress

Embroidered Tassel Maxi Dress from ASOS

Folk Florals Bloom Cardigan from Mod Cloth

Bloom Service Delivery Cardigan from Mod Cloth

Folk Florals Embroidered and Print Midi Dress

Embroidered and Print Midi Dress from ASOS

FP One Marishka Blouse

FP One Marishka Blouse from Free People

folk florals vintage embroidered cape

Vintage Embroidered Cape from HOV U.K.

Anna Sui Folk Florals Dress

Worth Your Beguile Dress from Anna Sui

Boohoo Plus Embroidered Smock Dress

Boohoo Plus Embroidered Smock Dress from ASOS

Folk Florals Vintage 60s Tapestry Cape

Vintage 60s Tapestry Cape from Gisela & Zoe Vintage

Alice & You Embroidered Off The Shoulder Folk Top

Alice & You Embroidered Off The Shoulder Folk Top from ASOS

ASOS PETITE One Premium Embroidered Swing Dress

PETITE Embroidered Swing Dress from ASOS

Folk Florals Ukrainian linen dress

Ukrainian Linen Dress from Embroidered Dream

ASOS Embroidered Cotton Midi Dress

Embroidered Cotton Midi Dress from ASOS

Art of Folk Embroidered Waistcoat

Art of Folk Embroidered Waistcoat from Kiss The Sky

Beauty & Style

5 Tips to Help Downsize Your Makeup Collection

5 tips to help you downsize your makeup collection

The first time I properly wore makeup was when I was 12 years old – cast as a gypsy in a stage production of Pinocchio with the local youth theatre. I was awkward, terribly spotty and hid in my hair which only made matters worse.

Our Director had a friend who was a professional makeup artist for stage & screen that had volunteered to come in and run workshops with us. When it was my turn, I slinked into the dressing room, nervous and anxious for what was next. Sitting in the chair, awash in bright lights from the surrounding mirrors, I surveyed the tools of the trade laid out in front of me.

And that’s when everything changed.

My afternoon with that Makeup Artist showed me just how transforming cosmetics could be. Makeup became a tool of self-expression, and helped me recognize things in myself I’d taken for granted. For as much as I used it to “cover up”, it actually uncovered something in myself and became very empowering. I wore makeup because I wanted to, not to attract a suitor, but because I liked how it looked.

In my past life as a performer, having my makeup done took on a wonderfully mediative quality and was part of the process in becoming something else. To this day I find it really calming, and love having someone else do my makeup whether it’s my dear friend Diana (who’s a pro and long suffering for putting up with me), or whether an MUA at Sephora or wherever.

Having my makeup doneGoth makeup stylesWith that said though, I *am* a makeup hoarder.

I have WAY more than I need or will ever use. In trying to face my bad habit of hanging onto things head on, I decided to overhaul my makeup – a warm-up before attempting to tackle my wardrobe full on.

If you’re also in the process of decluttering, taking things a step at a time is really helpful. It’s less overwhelming and you can see the progress you’re making. These are a few things I found useful and you might as well too.

5 Tips to Help Downsize Your Makeup Collection

1. Throw out any old makeup.

Dude. Sunk cost. Throw it out if it’s old. It may “look” fine, but old makeup is gross. When I was going through my stuff I found MAC palettes I know I bought in 2001 when a friend was starting her career as a Make Up Artist. Eiii! Told you I was a total makeup hoarder. This alone helped me shed most of the excess I had. If you’re not certain on shelf life, here’s a general makeup expiration guide.

2. Cancel subscription boxes.

Hey…what? YES. DO IT. I love mail and trying out new products but when it came down to it, I didn’t use half of the stuff I was being sent each month. My hunch is that you probably have a bunch of dust gatherers from various subscription boxes as well. If this sounds too painful to unsub from everything, than limit yourself to one beauty box.

With any money saved from monthly subscription boxes you can put it towards something you’ll really use instead!

3. Be realistic about your lifestyle.

This is always a hard one for me. I like to be prepared for anything. However my day-to-day really doesn’t call for much dramatic makeup (also I’m lazy, I won’t be going full-Siouxsie to the grocery store any time soon as much as I love seeing people who do!)

So this isn’t to say you should ditch everything fun that you might use once in a blue moon, but try to see if you notice a pattern emerging with what you use; be it product type or colours you’re drawn to as this can help you narrow it down. Eg: I had 14 blushes, I next to never use blush – ergo I only need 1.

4. Decide on your optimal colour palette.

This was really useful for me – I had a rainbow at my disposable, but I rarely strayed from certain colours.

Be honest with yourself as to what looks good on you and what will you use? What colours do you gravitate more towards? You probably already have a good idea about this, so now it’s just a matter of starting to consciously craft a colour palette that’s right for you.

5. Take stock of what remains and pare back.

Are you a makeup artist? No? Ok, then you really don’t need 27 varying shades of black eyeshadow. Yes, I know that one is glittery and the other one is a limited edition released during the Blood Moon, and OMG you got that shade when you were in New York. BUT the aim here to cut back on what you have. Be ruthless!

Eyeshadow selects

Overall there isn’t a magic number of how much you should have, it’s really up to you!

I’m making a conscious effort to fully transition to cruelty-free beauty, so when really stumped with deciding what to keep and what to toss, this was something that made the decision easy. (Here’s another great list of cruelty free brands for your reference if interested).

I’ll definitely be adding more to my makeup collection in future. However now that I’ve done the initial cull, I intend to be a lot more mindful so I don’t wind up with eyeshadows in my collection again that are almost ‘old enough to drink’.

Beauty & Style

Saint Laurent Palladium Collection Fall 2016

Saint Laurent imperial couture embroidered coat

Luscious velvets, embroidered details, rich brocades, sequins and gold glitz – I can’t get enough of the Saint Laurent Palladium collection for Pre-Fall/Fall 2016. It’s a retro-glam-rock-n-roll extravaganza. The silhouettes, the glam boots, the wide belts just *everything* (ok maybe not the furs, can we just go faux already please?); is pretty near perfection if you love reimagined vintage looks paying homage to music style history. Bowie vibes throughout and unisex/androgynous elements, paired with mixed prints and a rich colour palette of red, black, and gold – can it be Fall now please? Below are a few favourites, you can view the whole collection at Vogue, or watch the show at the Palladium on YouTube.

Saint Laurent Gold Dress Fall 2016YSL Fall 2016 DetailsYSL Ziggy Stardust inspired dressZiggy Stardust inspired hand embroidered lightening boltcomic tuxCosmic TuxFall 2016 YSL Red Velvet CapeRed Velvet CapeFlorals and wild prints from Saint Laurent Fall 2016

Beauty & Style

Sanctus Clothing

Sanctus Clothing Coats

I don’t know about you but I get a bit obsessed over things at times. Currently – to be filed under “things I do not need right now but can’t stop looking at none the less” – these coats from Sanctus Clothing, which are handmade in London from vegan friendly materials. I can just picture myself going for long winter walks wearing the last one below with my soon to be adopted wolf-dog by my side. Of course right? Bleh, must be practical for the moment, so I’ll just leave the below here for you in case you’re after a drappy-wolfie-vegan-coat, meanwhile I’m off to work on my #pingame.

Sanctus Clothing Asylum Coat Noir V3
Sanctus Clothing Asylum Coat ZeroSanctus Clothing Wolf Skin Asylum Coat