1940’s vintage hat, windowpane check vintage dress, and facing fears

New Look | eyreeffect.comNew Look | eyreeffect.comNew Look | eyreeffect.com

New Look

Sometimes, an outfit comes together only after the perfect accessory is found. In the case of today, this hat was needed. After a while you may get tired of me singing Lotty Dotty Vintage’s praise, but this is another dress from her amazing collection and it is one of my favorites. It was one of the first purchases I made from her a few months ago after my own wardrobe purge left me with a way to revamp my aesthetic towards true vintage.

I wore it once, and then felt as though my accessories could not quite do it justice. It needed something special; something to elevate the outfit and solidify the vintage era.

And then, I saw this hat. New Look | eyreeffect.com

It was part of a vintage lot on eBay, and was paired with another vintage hat in a similar style but pastel blue and adorned with flowers, both going for $15 with free shipping. Even if it had only been just this one hat, I would have gotten it right away. As soon as I saw this head-topper, I knew: this was what the dress had been waiting for.

Upon arrival, I showed my friend Skye and she immediately likened the hat to the iconic New Look photo. While I am no vintage Dior model, it did inspire me to edit these photos similar to the color scheme of many vintage photoshoots. De-saturated yellows, very blue greens, reds toned very true, a little bit matte. I’m still perfecting my vintage-photo-look editing, but I loved the way these turned out.

New Look | eyreeffect.comNew Look | eyreeffect.comNew Look | eyreeffect.com

Facing My Fears

This outfit caused me to face some fashion fears. Years ago, merely wearing dresses daily made me feel so self-conscious. I thought that people would laugh at me for trying to be “fancy,” or question why I wore whatever I wore, or think I was putting on a facade. But after committing to dresses and then later, vintage, I’ve found that nobody really cares. Or, if they do comment, it’s to admire what I’m wearing.

Still, there are things on my list that I love, yet feel quite nervous to wear in public. Highly visible vintage hats is at the top of that list.  New Look | eyreeffect.comNew Look | eyreeffect.com

Very few people wear hats where I live. Or if they do, they’re baseball caps emblazoned with sports teams, beanies topped with pompoms, or very mildly vintage-looking cloches. True vintage style hats, that are made to really be seen, are few and far between. Any sort of statement-making hat is rare. One can get away with vintage dresses and skirts, but a hat is bound to take an outfit from “vintage inspired” to “is she in a reenactment?”

So wearing this hat to grocery shop, as silly as it might seem, was out of my comfort zone. And sure, I got a few curious stares. One woman in particular tracked my movement for a fully intense minute or two as I walked past where she stood waiting by a shelf, and her face was impassive.

But most people smiled, or busied themselves talking to Evie, and one woman all out gushed over my hat and my outfit, calling me “so fashionable” and complimenting Evie as well on her sartorial choice of kitty ears.  New Look | eyreeffect.comNew Look | eyreeffect.comNew Look | eyreeffect.com

As frivolous as it may seem to be worried over the appearance of a hat, my sartorial choices go a bit deeper than the outward.

What I wear is a reflection of how I feel. About who I am as a housewife, as a person, even, in some regards, my faith. I choose clothes for their practicality, for their beauty, and for their modesty. These three things say a lot about me as a person, and though a hat is much less of a statement of my life than the make of a garment may be, it still emits a vibe. And until I wore this hat today, braving the judgement of complete strangers to add yet another layer to my vintage housewife aura, I wasn’t quite sure how committed to this vibe I was.

New Look | eyreeffect.comNew Look | eyreeffect.com New Look | eyreeffect.com

As it turns out, I’m quite okay with whatever it is wearing highly visible vintage hats says about me. It is not a particularly brave thing to wear, nor is it groundbreaking, nor shocking, but it is still a choice that sets me apart. I am someone who loves vintage. I am a mother who believes in wearing nice things sometimes for no other reason than… it makes me happy. I am someone who hopes to spread this kind of “bravery” to other women. To everyone who comes up to me and says they wish they could wear what I wear, to every mother who feels like she’s in that era of life where nothing is her own, to every woman who wants to lose weight.

Wear what makes you happy and makes you feel like YOU. In the grand scheme of things, there are a lot more important things that what you wore, but who knows. Someday you  might look back one day and wish you had worn more hats.

So just do it.

Dress, Lotty Dotty Vintage (similar here and here and here) | hat, ebay (similar here) | gloves, old | shoes, thrifted | belt, thrifted | earrings, mom’s | purse, c/o Vendula London

New Look | eyreeffect.com

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eShakti Deer Dress, a plaid shawl, and adventures in the forest

eShakti was kind enough to send me this dress for review, but all opinions expressed herein are my honest thoughts about the dress and brand.A Walk In the Park | eyreeffect.comA Walk In the Park | eyreeffect.com

A Walk in the Park

Happy Monday! Today I am excited to share a dress sent to me by eShakti! Now, I have shared quite a few eShakti dresses here on the blog; some of them thrifted — like this Paris dress and this plaid beauty, — some of them gifted to me for review such as this glorious red dress, and some purchased on my own like this bohemian maxi dress. While I haven’t kept every single one as my style morphed into what it is now (I have some serious regrets about pawning off that plaid one though), I’m always 100% pleased with the quality and fit of eShakti and this deer dress is no different! A Walk In the Park | eyreeffect.comA Walk In the Park | eyreeffect.com

The feature of this dress is, of course, the stunning neckline and the beautiful embroidery. I love that the snowflakes go all the way around the skirt; so many designs tend to only be on the front, but eShakti’s dresses usually carry their designs around for a beautiful effect. I thought that this vintage needlepoint purse, with its whimsical fairytale-esque embroidery, would be a perfect match for the equally fairytale-esque deer on the skirt of this dress.

The fit of eShakti’s dresses, if you opt for their custom fit, is always spot-on. Generally, A-line skirts like this are not my favorite. Since having kids and gaining weight, A-lines tend to emphasize my stomach and hip area, which I’m not keen on. However, with eShakti’s custom garment measurements, I was able to put in exactly how I wanted it to fit my body, and avoid any weird lumps or bumps showing! My one complaint, which can be avoided by adding an inch or two, is that the dress is a bit tight across my shoulders and upper arms if I try to reach forward. A Walk In the Park | eyreeffect.com

This is the case with many modern dresses, and I’ve realized that with eShakti you CAN size your dress to avoid this issue: add an inch for your arm measurement, and perhaps an inch for your shoulders as well. I’m willing to bet that adding some ease through this area would solve the mobility issue! And this is what I love about eShakti: you don’t just have to choose your measurements! If you want the hips to be wider than your own, you can do that. If you want the dress to be longer than shown, that’s an option! If you want shorter sleeves, go for it! eShakti’s custom styling option is 100% worth using and paying for.

I also love that eShakti’s dresses always have pockets, and bra-strap snaps. When those necklines are a little bit off the shoulder, or you just need to keep your straps secure, you can easily keep your bra straps from moving in any of their dresses!

A Walk In the Park | eyreeffect.comA Walk In the Park | eyreeffect.comA Walk In the Park | eyreeffect.com

I am excited to share more eShakti goodness with you in the next few weeks! At the end of showing off their gorgeous dresses I hope to put together a fun little lookbook featuring the four that I own! It should be a lot of fun!

I hope you are all having a lovely start to your New Year.

Dress, c/o eShakti (available in limited stock here) | shawl, old (similar here) | brooch, old (same here) | belt, thrifted | purse, vintage (similar here and here and here) | boots, Amazon (here) | earrings, vintage/grandma’s (similar here)

A Walk In the Park | eyreeffect.com

Photos by Suko Photography

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Vintage 1950’s Shirtwaist Dress, Novelty Vegetable Purse, and Bravery at the Park

The Vegetable Gardens | eyreeffect.com The Vegetable Gardens | eyreeffect.com

The Vegetable Gardens

You all know I am an avid thrift-store shopper. But even in all of the years I have been visiting my local thrift haunts, I am still sometimes surprised by what I find. These like-new (possibly are new!) Chase & Chloe wedges and this vintage fur coat that showed up a year after I first spotted it, this brand-new and tags-still-attached Hearts and Roses of London Dress in my size, this amazing retro Victorian-ice-skaters fabric that I turned into a skirt. Despite having years of fairly good luck at thrift stores, sometimes I am still taken aback.

This vintage vegetable wicker purse is one such item. While browsing through the basket section at my local Goodwill (where I rarely find anything better than 80’s vintage, to be honest), I spotted a carrot adorning the side of a basket. Within seconds, my eyes identified that this was not a regular basket, but a vintage novelty purse and I darted my hand to that purse so quickly I may have nearly decapitated a thrift store patron walking by.

My heart skipped a beat, my breath caught, and I uttered inadvertent words of excitement over what I held in my hands.  The Vegetable Gardens | eyreeffect.comThe Vegetable Gardens | eyreeffect.com

And you might think I am saying these things just to add to the drama of the situation, but no. I don’t know that I have ever reacted quite like this to any thrifted item (though the rare 1950’s dresses do get me!). I’ve never had my heart literally skip a beat, nor my breath leave my chest. Of course I get excited for good finds, but usually it’s a much less visceral reaction.

Ever since following Kara’s blog, I have been hoping to add to my bag collection. Kara may well have the most amazing bag (and shoe!) collection I have ever seen, and I’ve been wishing for a few novelty bags that perfectly compliment an outfit like hers do! This vegetable bag instantly reminded me of her, and I can’t wait to pair it with a few more outfits! I especially love that it’s big and roomy inside; quite enough room for everything I need to put in my purse, and then some! The Vegetable Gardens | eyreeffect.comThe Vegetable Gardens | eyreeffect.comThe Vegetable Gardens | eyreeffect.com

Reaching Goals

This photoshoot is the official first one of the year. Sure, I posted on Monday but I shot those photos last year, and toward the beginning of December at that! So I was excited to be able to go out and shoot photos in an actual location! The opportunity was pure happenstance; I had already begun my process of getting ready as I knew I needed photos for today. Then my mom popped by, and after getting all gussied up, I realized that my tripod was in the van… at my husband’s job. So I borrowed my mom’s car, drove over to get the tripod (which, thankfully, was only about 7 minutes away), and formulated a plan. I was going to go to a park which has a few interesting buildings around it, and shoot photos.

It was almost noon when I reached the park, so my light was smack at the “worst light for photoshoots” light. I drove up to the park… and it was closed for the winter. Still determined, I made my way to a dog park closer to where I live and was relieved to find that only one other person was at the park, and walking the opposite direction from where I wanted to shoot! So at a T in the pathway, I quickly ascertained which way had the best light for this time of day, and started to snap photos as quickly as I could.

The Vegetable Gardens | eyreeffect.comThe Vegetable Gardens | eyreeffect.com The Vegetable Gardens | eyreeffect.com  This is when I quickly regretted not wearing a coat or tights. At 35 degrees Fahrenheit, with a breeze, in the shade… well. My toes and fingers were so numb by the end I could not actually feel whether I was pushing buttons on the camera hard enough to change things. Right before I shot my last few images, the one other occupant of the park walked down the pathway in front of me. He was an older gentleman bundled up in a coat and scarf and gloves and looking very warm, his white hair poking out atop a face shielded by sunglasses. His two dogs amiably walked with him, one an old miniature pug who ambled toward me with some apathy and inspected my bag. The other, on a leash, was an 8 month old English bulldog whose puppy-ness showed through as he jumped and panted in my direction, straining his leash hard until I bent to pet him.

“He just wants his photo taken!” the man exclaimed, laughing a bit at his dog’s enthusiasm. I smiled and mentioned that he looked like a very photogenic pup. His owner mused that I must be feeling chilly, and urged his dogs to move on to “let the nice lady finish.” With a tug of the leash, he tried to walk away as the older of the two dogs slowly trudged off, but the younger continued to strain in my direction until they were out of sight.

The Vegetable Gardens | eyreeffect.com The Vegetable Gardens | eyreeffect.com

I quickly grabbed a few last shots and made my way back to the car. I was parked directly next to him and his dogs, and he was just packing them up when I arrived. Amiably, I exclaimed “and now it’s time to go home and warm up!” to which he responded “yes, you’re making me feel cold! It’s cold out, I’m cold, you look cold; go home and put some clothes on!”

And then his youngest pup peeked around the corner of the car and proceeded to get excited until I bid him, too, a good day.

As afraid as I am to talk to people when I am out and about taking photos, incidents always   turn out to be much more fun and much less judgmental or weird than I expect. I almost always assume people will think I am odd, carting around a tripod and photographing myself, posing, muttering, dancing around, jumping; all of the things I do while taking photos. But in fact, most people are kind and curious. Most people assume I’m a photographer, or a vintage seller, or are just intrigued by and interested in my fashion blog. I’m so glad I braved the cold weather and the chance of speaking to someone, because it went to show me that stories are everywhere.

Imagine, if I had shot this in my yard I’d have nothing more to say than “look at this bag, isn’t it neat?” And by the way, if you don’t follow me on Instagram @eyreeffect, you should. Because I took full advantage of every pun I could in captioning shots of this bag and you don’t want to miss that. 

Dress, Lotty Dotty Vintage (almost the same here, similar here and here) | headscarf, belt, and shoes, thrifted | corn earrings, vintage/gift (similar here and here) | bag, vintage/thrifted (almost exactly the same here!) | gloves, vintage (similar here ) | petticoat, Amazon (is itchy and not super great)The Vegetable Gardens | eyreeffect.com

Vintage coat, swing dress, and bumper bangs

The Long Hunt | eyreeffect.comThe Long Hunt | eyreeffect.comThe Long Hunt | eyreeffect.com

The Long Hunt

Happy New Year! I hope your celebrations were fun and safe, and that your year has started out awesomely! My year began pretty quietly, as we’re all going through varying levels of sickness at the moment. We went to bed at 10pm on New Years Eve, and slept in on New Years’ day! It was pretty  nice, actually! And now, as we all mend, we’re taking this day off to just rest and heal up and clean this disaster of a house.

I thought it was only appropriate to start the year out here on the blog with a coat that took me literally a year to purchase.

The Long Hunt | eyreeffect.com

I saw this gorgeous 1950’s coat with its attached mink collar at my local Goodwill over a year ago. However, after much consideration I decided to leave it behind, as it was priced more than I wanted to spend and I had other items I needed more. As the months went on, I didn’t see it there any more and figured someone had purchased it.

But then, somehow, I visited Goodwill on one of their tag-sale days. And there in all its glory was this coat, now on tag sale for under $2. You can bet I snatched this coat up immediately and didn’t let it go! I never expected that deciding to wait would pay off in such a big way, but here I am now in possession of this dreamy coat, and I could not be happier!  The Long Hunt | eyreeffect.comThe Long Hunt | eyreeffect.com

This dress is also a product of waiting, although of a different sort. After purging a lot of my wardrobe on a BST site, I had some money to spend on things that fit correctly and went searching through Amazon for a good longer-sleeved dress for fall and winter. I happened upon this and two others, and took my time considering all of them and their pros and cons. When I finally settled on this beauty, I placed my order… and waited about 1-1/2 months for it to be marked as sold.

And then to my dismay, its tracking told me that it would not be delivered for another month!

Thankfully, though, tracking was wrong and it was delivered only 4 days later. The Long Hunt | eyreeffect.com

This, too, was well worth the wait! While it does arrive MUCH faster if you have Amazon Prime, I didn’t mind the long shipping time as the dress itself is so pretty and comfortable! I appreciate the working buttons that don’t gap, the stretchy material, and the super full skirt. Any dress I can twirl in is a dress worth waiting for. And the color is so beautiful!

The Long Hunt | eyreeffect.comThe Long Hunt | eyreeffect.com

This year, I already feel like I have accomplished some of my goals. There are some things in the works for the blog that I’m super excited about, and I’ve been making good choices in regards to the foods I’ve been choosing to put into my body! It’s so easy to make excuses when you’re coming down from being sick, but I’m determined! Besides which, a sick body needs healthy choices, not junk food!

Blog wise, though, I have so many ideas spinning through my head and I can’t wait to bring them to fruition!

The Long Hunt | eyreeffect.com

Can we also talk about these shoes? They’re the Chase and Chloe brand, from which I have gotten two of my favorite pairs — these red wedges, and these yellow ones. I was wandering Goodwill one day on a surprise tag sale day. All orange tags were 99 cents. Lo and behold, right before I was about to leave I spotted these beauties, orange tagged, looking almost brand new! I couldn’t believe my luck and of course I snagged them.

While thrifting is definitely something that takes a lot of dedication and time, sometimes those last-minute visits can be so rewarding! I had no idea that the tag sale was going on, and actually no intention of buying anything for myself! I was totally there for my kids and husband, so it was a fun little treat to find a good brand of shoes waiting just for me!

The Long Hunt | eyreeffect.comThe Long Hunt | eyreeffect.com

I hope you have all had a great start to your new year! I think 2017 will be the best year yet! What did you do to celebrate?

Coat, vintage/thrifted (Similar here and here and here) | dress, Amazon | brooch, gift (similar here and here and here) | belt, thrifted | gloves, vintage (similar here) | shoes, thrifted (similar in different colors here) | headscarf thrifted | earrings, gift | Bag c/o Vendula LondonThe Long Hunt | eyreeffect.com

2016 Outfit Recap

Happy New Year’s Eve!

I hope you are all celebrating safely! While I’m sick at home, I thought I’d do a last-minute recap of my favorite outfits of 2016. My style evolved a LOT this year, going from retro-cute to vintage vixen, and I’m so so happy with how it’s settling! So let’s just get right into it!

The Frivolity of Being || Cherry Cherry

BBRBF’s Forever

In January, I was only just coming to terms with the fact that I had Postpartum Depression. I still didn’t quite understand everything that it affected, and you can definitely read it in some of my posts and my demeanor then if you know me well. But the highlight of January was that I met Sara and we bonded and became Best Book Reading Blog Friends Forever! And thus started the BBRBF Book Club.

The Difficulties of a Postpartum Body

At the end of February, I dyed my hair fuchsia and it was one of the most fun things I’ve ever done with my hair! It invigorated me to start trying new styles, which led me to learning how to properly set my locks for vintage curls. Throughout March and April, I continued to play with more vintage styles, though I never really made the commitment to a true vintage look until later in the year.

Irish
Dreamgirl | All Dress April

The Royal We

In March, our first BBRBF Book Club post happened! We read The Royal We, which was kind of hit-or-miss around our little group. I decided to go all out I Love Lucy with my first ever poodle hair and a slightly clashing outfit. Who says you can’t wear red and pink together?

Whovian | By The Sea

Stranger Bird Vintage

In April, I turned 28 and had one of my favorite collaborations to date with the fantastic vintage shop Stranger Bird Vintage. I made myself a Doctor Who skirt, and wore a lot of self-made creations! Figuring out those first few circle skirts has seriously changed how I look at sewing, and there will be a LOT of me-made creations coming in the new year!

Retro On a Budget

Pastel Bettie Page

Somewhere between May and June, I dyed my hair back to its natural dark brown and wrote about dressing retro on a budget. I’m all about budget vintage! I bought my first few LindyBop dresses (which I LOVE), and then styled my first Bettie Bangs and wore a gorgeous lavender dress that Hannah sent to me!

Welcome To The Eyre Effect

And then, big drumroll, in August I rebranded! My blog was Eccentric Owl no more, and I felt all of the cogs click into place as The Eyre Effect took shape. I committed to using a better lens for my photos, and you can immediately see the difference in the look of my photography. It is hands-down the best decision I’ve ever made for blogging, and I don’t regret the change for a day!

Fangirl | 1960’s Fall

Evie’s First Birthday

September rolled around and I found the perfect dress for a mother-daughter photoshoot with Evie, who turned one! Looking back at her, I feel like she’s already changed SO much, even though this was only four months ago (almost.)

Berry Sweet

Channeling Audrey | Frankenstein

Towards the end of September, I channelled my childhood memories with the sweetest skirt I own, and then through October decided to channel two famous icons: Audrey Hepburn, and Frankenstein’s Monster. I really love a good story through photos and clothing, and all of these posts were so fun to share as I could tell the story behind them!

Romantic | The Perfect Cardigan

Vendula London

October also saw in two of the most amazing pieces of vintage outerwear: the glorious heart-print cape that Emily scouted for me at an estate sale near her, and the amazing floral cardigan I swapped with Penny and Lilly on Etsy! And then in the beginning of November, I had one of the most amazing collaborations to date with Vendula London and decided to really commit to a vintage look.

Corn Maze | Cars

The Dress of Dreams

In November, I found the dress that is literally made of my dreams with its headscarf-esque pattern, bright colors, and floral print. It began a nice little surge of vintage-buying after I cleared out my closet in a BST group and garnered funds for a new wardrobe. November completely transformed how I felt about my ability to dress true vintage, and I cannot WAIT to photograph all of the goodies I added to my closet!

A Colorful Past

My Grandmother’s Pie | Thoughts on Standing Out

I also wore the most perfect vintage dress that has ever come into my closet, and shared my thoughts on standing out. It used to be such a scary thing for me to be different. I was so afraid of being seen as a fake, or as someone who thought she was better than others, or just plain stupid that I let insecurities hold me back from wearing what I really wanted to wear. And letting all that go has been so freeing!

Red is a Happy Color

Snow

And now we’re up to December, where some of the most fun and beautiful posts have happened! I shared my progress on pulling out of Postpartum Depression, which I believe is very important to talk about. Then, it snowed! If that outfit is not Christmas as heck, I don’t know what is!

Swamplandia! | Mod(ern) Vintage

And that brings us up to the last post of this year which was one of the first outfits I shot in December! Thank you for coming with me on this retrospective of my outfits and my year. And more importantly, thank you for supporting my blog, my dreams; for commenting, for befriending me, for being some of the best people I know! I’m constantly grateful for the friendships that have come from blogging and the opportunities that arise because of it. I cannot wait to see what next year holds!