Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Happy Halloween!

In honour of Halloween, my black cat brooch has taken pride of place on my hat!

Happy Halloween! x

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Flowers, headscarves, hairnets and Etsy ~ my brand spanking new shop!


It's here, and I'm so excited! 
I finally got to grips with Etsy and have opened up my very own shop.

Rosie Alia Designs is my shop and it is packed full of handmade hair accessories inspired by the glamour of the past, because every girl deserves to feel like a starlet!

Here are just a few of the items I have been working hard to get listed this week:

I have started uploading some pieces that are just perfect for the festive season, so if you're looking for a little something as a gift or to top off a special Christmas outfit then I may just have what you need!

What do you think? I would absolutely love you ladies to have a little look as I value all of your opinions.

Pip pip x

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Halloween hair treats giveaway!

It's fast approaching, that there Halloween!

For me this means carving pumpkins, making soup with the entrails and some spooky cocktail concoctions...and whether you plan on going full fancy dress, or just adding a creepy touch to your outfit, I may well have just the thing!

Fancy having this little monster (don't worry, he's plastic!) atop your bonce this Halloween?

Well if you head over to the Facebook page for my hair accessories, you will find this exact photo! Simply 'like' and share the page, and leave a comment on the photo to be in with a chance of winning (UK entrants only I'm afraid). The giveaway will close at midday on Wednesday after which I will randomly select the winner.

I will then contact the winner for an address and pop it in the post as soon as possible.

Pop over here to check out the giveaway for yourself!

Pip pip x

Thursday, 18 October 2012

Birthday, fun and beautiful presents!

My birthday was at the beginning of October. My 25th birthday. This scared me. As did the fact that it was my first "working" birthday ever (I usually wangle a day off). Eurgh, adulthood.

So I decided to pootle off to Norwich for a week before my birthday to spend time with my fam, foraging in other peoples cast offs (carboots, junk shops, charity shops, but that was covered in my previous post), playing drunk pool and eating loads of food.
Plus opening presents, obviously! .....WHAT? I'm not too grown up for presents. Never.

So here is an ever so quick pictorial round up of the week leading up to my birthday, minus the previously shared bargains:

5 games of drunk pool with made-up rules and everyfink. These rules included removing the black ball until the end, so it didn't get accidentally potted before its time. Obvs.

  Family frolicking and dog harassment.

 Birthday bowling after my first ever day of going to work on my birthday.

Now onto the PRESENTS!

Typewriter cushion thoughtfully chosen by my little sister. Knitted gauntlet gloves. Beautiful vintage buttons.

Housekeepers box. Teatowel. Kitsch vintage baby ornaments....and a satchel! A lovely lightly worn black vintage one, a handy smaller size than my beloved Burt. I think I shall name her Betty. And although I shouldn't know the price of birthday presents, my mumma just couldn't resist telling me, for it was such a bargain. Two teeny pounds from a carboot!

A swiss chalet clock.

 A vintage telephone table. A working vintage hairdryer. A 1950's tree topper lady with a crepe paper skirt. A ballerina ring holder. A retro portable radio. A giant shoe horn, of course. Folding coat hanger and retractable airer, and a vintage flag.

A naked lady. A lovely apron. A floral ceramic earring and brooch set. Vintage buttons. A knitted hat needle case. A faux fur capelet. A lucky rabbit foot brooch.

This vintage 1950's card has a music box attached, so when you turn the handle it plays a very twangy version of "Happy Birthday". How fab is that?

A beautifully glamorous vintage pearl, crystal and cut glass earring and choker set. A pair of crochet gloves. A black velvet turban-style headband, lovingly made by my talented nan!

 Tara Starlet 40's style dungarees.


A treat voucher crafted by my wonderful pal.

This absolutely phenomenal 1940's coat was brought down by a lovely lady for me from the storage room of a charity shop when shopping with my mumma. I gasped. And my mother kindly offered to buy it for me as a combined birthday/christmas present. £45 well spent indeed! It is incredibly perfect condition, fits me (well, not on the chesty-region, but that rarely happens!) and just look at those pleats. And hidden/top secret pockets, but I didn't tell you that!

 A beautiful trio of wall mirrors. I can't wait to get these up in my flat when they manage to get here.
Now I just need to find a space for them...cue clever Mr Mike's suggestion to just get rid of some of my "stuff" to make room for them. I think NOT!

 A gold crest motif, which now sits perfectly on the front of our fake fireplace.

 This gorgeous 1940's dress is a luxuriously soft cotton summer dress....but there's no way I can possibly hold on until then. Besides, blue and cream works with brown right? I'm thinking brown What Katie Did seamed stockings, a brown cardigan and a fur collar. That's wintery.

Phew! What a fab bunch of present buyers I know, eh? As you can imagine, I was all smiles.

Pip pip x

Sunday, 30 September 2012

People of Norwich, thanks for all the stuff!

Hi all,

I am currently taking some time off at the moment, and have escaped that big smoky city of London and come to stay with my family in Norwich. Naturally, I have done a little secondhand shopping and picked myself up some delights!

Now first and foremost is my very favourite buy, and probably my most bizarre!

I picked up this vintage St John's Ambulance anatomical diagram wall hanging (almost as tall as me) for £25. 
Although I was trying not too spend too much money and I rarely buy things at such a price, I just couldn't let this one pass me by! I have been obsessed with old anatomical diagrams for years and been desperate for one of these. My excuse it that we were desperately in need of something to fill the void on the wall behind the tv. So if anything, it was a necessary buy....right? (I'll keep telling myself that)

This little vintage felt tilt hat cost me £5. It needs a clean and a bit of a steam and reshape, but it has lots of potential.

 This morning me and my friend set off to our favourite carboot for some very cold bargain hunting and these (along with a couple of presents for people which I cannot show you but am very pleased with) are the gems I picked up:

This skirt looks to me to be a vintage military skirt, possibly Navy? I'd guess this judging by the style and the nature of a lot of the other items on this same stall. It cost me £2! Very happy.

 The skirt has a curious little asterisk stitched into the inside of the waistband! I wonder why. Puzzling!

I am very pleased to have found this framed Lord Kitchener mirror, which probably dates from around the 70's. My Dad picked one up from a carboot previously and I found myself greatly jealous. So when I came across this one for £4 I snapped it up.
The grey box bag is a fabulous size for carting around all the rubbish that inhabits my handbag and even has little pockets for the things that so often get lost and tangled...lipstick, kirbygrips etc. A steal at £3.
The orange/red beads were £1, as were the clip on suspender straps still in their packet!

I am very pleased with my purchases and can't wait to get my mirror and wall hanging up in my flat on my return to London!

Pip pip xx

Monday, 17 September 2012

I'll Be Darned! recent vintage mends.

So as you all no doubt know (due to my wittering on about it, sorry lovelies!), I have a business that deals with vintage clothing alterations and repairs. 4 months in and I am so happy to be doing this!

I have been getting the most beautiful garments coming to me for work, and I thought that maybe I ought to share all these beauties with you....what do you think? I gets lots of inspiration from other vintage bloggers' wardrobes and secondhand finds, so I thought that you ladies might also take some inspiration from these lovely garments.

So this evening I have some wonderful vintage to show off to you....just try not to get too jealous (I have to try rather hard myself, there's lots of things I'd love to own)!

L-R: A beautiful beaded bustier, green lurex capris (part of a two piece).

 A vintage child's western shirt.

 Gold lurex trousers (part of a two-piece).

L-R: A 1940's gown with illusion neckline and embroidery, and a silk fronted bathing suit.

Red chiffon dress with gold trim and shoulder drape.

"Nettie Vogues" chiffon maxi dress with blue drape.

The back of the above dress, before and after!

To find out exactly what I did to each of these beautiful garments, you can pop over to the IBD Facebook page and read more.

Pip pip xx

Friday, 14 September 2012

Sew What?: 1940's pinafore skirt in the last days of Summer!

Oh my, have I been away a long time! Doesn't time fly when you're...err.....working really hard!

Now I hadn't realised just how long it was since I last wrote a post, and I wouldn't blame you for thinking I had dropped off the face of the earth. Or taken a wonderful, lengthy summer holiday. However, I have not.

I have instead just been working really, really hard. In June I started my own alterations and repairs business (plus a sideline in vintage inspired hair accessories) and took the scary leap to self-employment which has left me feeling tired, busy and a little bit all over the place. That, and rather poor. So with not much time and very little money, you'll forgive me for not blogging for *GASP* almost two whole months. It's hard to know what to blog about when you aren't buying wonderful things/going anywhere exciting!

My lack of funds has left me pining after lots of pretty things but unable to afford last night I got a little creative with my sewing machine and took a little bit of time to sew something for myself! I decided to make myself a 1940's style pinafore skirt because it is one of those items I have been pining after for goodness knows how long. Being thrifty, I dived into my stash and made use of some of the fabric I already had; I used a chunky black linen, and some vintage deep orange buttons.

Ever the impatient sewer, once I'd started it became something I simply had to finish immediately. I sewed into the night, and went to bed  one 40's style pinafore skirt richer!

So when I got up this morning, remembered my skirt-making success of the previous night and saw the sun shining (although there is a definite chill in the air) I of course threw on a bright and colourful enseble as I decided to celebrate the dying summer days.

Please excuse the terrible self-taken photographs, my chap wasn't around to take any for me!

 Yellow chiffon headscarf and hair flower, made by me (available here); Peasant top secondhand, originally Topshop); 1940's style pinafore skirt, made by me; Nude seamed stockings, What Katie Did; Coral sandals, a present from my chap and purchased from Clarks.
On the skirt, I made the straps attach to the waistband by way of buttons, as this means it can be worn in a multitude of ways: straight straps, crossed-over at the back, or even strapless as a simple skirt!

I covered up with a little blue wool bolero, part of a repro two-piece from Ebay.
1950's handbag, secondhand shop.

Outfit details:
Beautiful vintage brooch, gift from a friend.
A detail shot of the waist of my skirt, look at those lovely buttons!
Bamboo and green wooden bracelets....and dream shoes.
Hair accessories made by me, find them on my Rosie Alia Hair Accessories Facebook page.

I'll try not to stay away too long this time, promise!

Pip pip xx

Friday, 27 July 2012

We're all going on a summer holiday....a very short one!

So the sun has FINALLY shown its face, and my what a pretty face it is too!

As we have no plans/funds to take a summer holiday, and as me and Mr Mike have been able to share some days at home, yesterday we grabbed the opportunity and hopped into my parents car (being loaned to us whilst they holiday abroad) and took ourselves off on an adventure to Southend!

We put on our sunglasses, lathered ourselves in sun cream, and off we went.

It's not often I get to get out of London, but I relish the time I do get to escape the big city for some sand/sea/country drives. Mmmm, fresh air!

When we arrived, it was incredibly busy, with plenty of people wearing FAR too little clothing, and who were mostly a leathery, lobstery sort of colour! The sea was filled with people swimming, but alas Southend council have a no dogs on beaches rule for the summer season so we could not join them ourselves. Nor could we go on the incredibly long pier, again because there is a no dogs rule. Bah! So we looked out at the pier, and all the swimmers splashing about, and took ourselves off for some good old-fashioned seaside fish and chips...

Then we went on a long wander back along the seafront and to the car. We hopped in and set off for a quieter part of the beach (hoping we'd find a non dog-free part). We parked up at Leigh-on-Sea on a hill overlooking the marina with a wonderful view, and wandered down towards the water. 

On our excursion I wore...
Green chiffon headscarf: charity shop.
Fifties sunglasses and swimsuit: vintage fair.
Coral button-up skirt: New Look.
Hawaiian print slip on shoes: Primark.

When we reached the marina, we found it was also a dog-free zone. So we perched up on a wall by the sea and I clambered down onto the beach for a paddle! I had decided I couldn't possibly go to the seaside without going in the sea at least a tad. Bliss!

I then grabbed an ice cream from a water-side cafe (it had to be done), and off we strolled back up to the car. We proceeded to sing along to Radio One at the top of our lungs all the way home...which I suppose could explain some of the funny looks we were getting!

Me oh my, what a lovely adventure that was!

Have you been able to get out and enjoy this lovely weather dear readers?

Pip pip xx

Thursday, 19 July 2012

Technicalities (and a technophobe!)

This is just a quick post from me today, mainly because I want to show off what my incredibly technophobic (computers confuse me) self managed to make....using an easy website builder, I'll give you that, but STILL!

I made a little website for my alterations and repairs business-

Please do pop over and see it at
 I'd love to hear your feedback!

I have also got myself a business twitter, which I shall be using more often than my personal one from now on I suspect. Follow me please! @Ill_Be_Darned

I now feel ever so proud of myself and my tiny technical advancement....

One small step for me, one giant step for, well, me!

Pip pip! xx

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Sew What?: Doggy bandana!

Today I bring you photos of a very cute dog!

My mum/step-dad/sister have flown off abroad for a 3 week holiday, leaving their lovely pooch in our care. She arrived on Friday and I am absolutely LOVING having a dog to keep me company!

Before her walk yesterday, I popped a bandana of mine round her neck because, let's face it, who doesn't love a dog in a bandana?

Tired pup after a very long, soggy and muddy walk!

She got lots of compliments on her little scarf whilst we were out, so when we got back I decided to make her one of her very own!

I dug out some fabric from my stash and set to work!

20 minutes later, she was sporting her new accessory with pride....

 Kitty the lurcher is modelling her very own I'll Be Darned! reversible floral/gingham doggy bandana.

I think she looks rather beautiful, don't you?

If you have a pooch in need of a custom made doggy bandana then do get in touch!

Pip pip xx