Sunday, 31 July 2016

Death on the Riviera [books]

All the other John Bude books I've read to date - all reprinted as part of the British Library Crime Classics series - were written in the 1930s. (If you want to read those reviews, I've read The Cornish Coast Murder and The Lake District Murder, and The Sussex Downs Murder.) This one was originally published in 1952, so is rather later than the others, and shows a definite shift in style. Whereas the 1930s stories were very domestic, all about murders in remote rural locations, this one sees the action transported to the French Riviera, a bit of sunshine during the post-war years when rationing was still in effect. The Riviera is beautifully described; you can almost feel the sunshine seen in films such as To Catch A Thief and it all feels almost impossibly chic.

Thursday, 28 July 2016

Blogoversary giveaway!

Aha! July was NOT going to get away without a blogoversary giveaway. As always, I've got a pile of stuff that I think is cool to send to one lucky winner, to celebrate the blog making it through another year. I started it back in 2010, and it's kind of odd to think it's lasted six years. It's changed a bit, as indeed have I, but it's also still very much the same: I've tried to keep it non-commercial (if I ever lose my job, I'll probably take ads, but at the moment the Robot is run on a no-ads, no-freebies basis), and while I'll write about a variety of subjects, from SF to travel to food, I try to maintain a vintage angle on everything. And I've met so many brilliant people through blogging, it's been really wonderful. Whenever I think of giving up, I realise how much I'd miss them if they stopped blogging and wonder if they might also miss me, and so I keep on posting. Here's to another six years!

So, enough about the blog and blogging, what's in the box?

Sunday, 24 July 2016

1930s embroidery transfer brought to life

1930s embroidery transfer on a tablecloth
Okay, half-life, as it's not finished yet. I've had a hankering for a while to do some embroidery, and while doing my mothbusting I rediscovered a Wilkos tablecloth I bought to embroider. I know I should be finishing my knitted jumper, or working on some freelance, or doing housework, but yesterday I really wanted to do the embroidery, so I had a good look through my stash of vintage transfers and found one I liked the look of.

Sunday, 17 July 2016

Crinoline Robot's Vintage Week

Been cooking retro food over at Greedybots again...
For once, I actually feel as though my life is vaguely under control. That's pretty rare for me. The garden isn't quite a mess, the house is more or less presentable, and I've had time to work on one or two personal projects. I've really been enjoying vintage gubbins lately, too.

Saturday, 16 July 2016

Tea Dance [music]

My route into vintage was via the 1920s, and a love of silent films and the music of the era. I've dipped more into later decades in recent years, but recently felt the need for more jazz-age stuff on my iPod*. It has been literally years since I got some new-to-me music from that era. I used to be able to buy CDs from Duck, Son and Pinker, a shop in Bath that had the best selection of vintage music, and bought a lot of CDs back when I was able to browse their stacks, but since that closed down options have been limited. I'd got a couple of CDs on the Past Perfect label from Past Times when that was still going, so decided to order some more discs straight from Past Perfect.

Tuesday, 12 July 2016

Lady Rose Lion (Monkey Unicorn)

Have you been following Gemma's (Retrochick) #glamorousjuly project? I've been joining in when I can, if only because I think most people would welcome a bit of fun and frivolity right now. Today's challenge is to write a positive review to support a small business. And, as it happens, I've got the perfect candidate.

A lot of the 4160 Tuesdays perfumes I've reviewed have been too modern to suit my tastes, but the one I'd really wanted to try from the brand has proved an absolute corker. Many perfumistas have described Lady Rose Lion (Monkey Unicorn) as echoing the scent of a classic vintage chypre. I wanted to try it because it's got a peach note and I was really hoping that with that and the oakmoss it would be like Mitsouko.

Monday, 11 July 2016

How to moth-proof your wardrobe

Clothes moths. Horrible things. If your taste in vintage leans more to the 1960s and 1970s, when polyester and other synthetics really came into vogue, you might not care about them so much – moths have no taste for crimplene. However, if your tastes are a little earlier, or you're a knitter, or you're mad about felt hats, you will understand exactly why I hate them so much. Those tiny, flittering, harmless looking things can wreak havoc on clothes.

I'd noticed a few moths flitting about the bedroom recently, and while I wasn't 100% certain they were clothes moths, I wasn't taking any chances. I decided to give the wardrobes and drawers a proper-deep down mothproofing. It's a simple enough process, if fairly time consuming. 

Monday, 4 July 2016

Who wants a free 50s fridge?

Prestcold fridge logoSorry about the impromptu break. I didn't seem to have much to write about, and then the country went bonkers and I couldn't think of much to write (frankly, I felt like digging myself a bunker to retreat into until about 2026), hence my general silence. Unfortunately my garden was too overgrown for much excavation, so the bunker plan had to be shelved* and you're stuck with me. But I do have little things to talk about...

First up: anyone want a genuine 1950s Prestcold fridge? Pale yellow outside, turquoise inside. Though the external paint isn't pristine it's still got all its original drawers, and when we last turned it on (back in the 1990s) it still worked, though it was noisy and inefficient. We've been using it to store wine in, as it's lightproof and keeps bottles safe from temperature changes, but it's really taking up too much space for something that no longer works with our dining room design. It's free to a good home, but you'll have to be able to collect it from Trowbridge at a weekend, and you WILL need two people to move it. Contact me if you want it or have any questions at the usual email addy – crinolinerobot AT yahoo DOT com.
Prestcold refrigerator