Feeding my soul

Good soul music should make you want to weep and rejoice in the same sensation of taking it all in, looking to the sky, smiling with tears in your eyes.

My Sunday mornings many times are composed of a radio, WNCU 90.7 Gospel Brunch and a whole lot of joy and tears. I can’t keep in my chair, if a song comes on that is performed with a deepness of feeling, the anguish of loss, hope or love, I’m absolutely swimming  in it. I sway, rocking from foot to foot. I allow the dulcet tones to completely envelop me. The louder the better too.

A slightly out of tune piano hammered on my experienced fingers with a woman singing at the top of their lungs in chorus is perfection in my eyes. This was the birth place of rock and roll, rhythm  and blues. A church service and choir singing to Jesus. Crying for freedom for the weary soul. Tambourines in hand, this is gospel at its best.

What sparked today’s post was actually the  tunes droning over the loud speakers at a concert I attended this last Saturday. I was so taken with the music  in the background of my picnic on the lawn, I turned to my boyfriend “You have to Shazam this! It’s amazing!”.

And this is what we heard,  Sail by Pastor T.L. Barrett And The Youth For Christ Choir (36 seconds in the chorus starts)

Also Nick Cave, from his album Lyre of Orpheus, O Children uses the chorus of a gopel choir to tap into the sorrow of the human soul. I’m fully going to own the fact that I was exposed to this song by the film  Harry Potter Deathly Hallows. Yes, the scene from the movie is sad but the music makes it. The sorrow of loss and fear are conveyed in the slow tempo and minor key blues of Cave then the chorus brings hope. “Oo children, lift up your voice, children, rejoice.”

Such a powerful song.


Weddings! Weddings All Around!

While home visiting family, I stumbled across my parent’s wedding album, and oh what a find it was!

Wedding Album

The bride blushingly wore gobs of white satin , the groom indeed was as skinny as a rail, it was a wedding in the 1970’s.

I’ve seen my parent’s album before, but giving it a fresh look from aged (not sooo aged) eyes I see new and enlightening things. It’s  fun to look back on the family something like 40 year ago and see all that has changed. I peer at their faces knowing each’s character and imagining their thoughts. Whom is seated next to whom at the reception tables ah yes, I secretly know why.

The photo below, blushing bride and groom and their parents.

Couple with the Parents

*Note  my Grandma with the hankie…it was apparently a very moving ceremony.



Amazing time the 70’s, the ginormous bow tie , my mother’s hair in ringlets (honestly I think this is the one and only time she ever wore it this way as far as I know, but my knowledge of such things is limited to the late 80’s and beyond)The grandmas are both strikingly beautiful and both totally unaware that the big hair of the 60’s is now somewhat pasé. The  parlor and bouffant had to move over for  the natural look of the flower child. They played guitars on park bridges and sang songs of love in small town Kansas. Grandma Mary has those glasses that change tinting with light (she still has them) . Current pair is literally rose colored! She’s so pretty, I bet her blue eyes just popped with that sateen dress. Just in case you were wondering blue happens to be her most favorite color in the world.

Grandmother is in a red velvet cocktail dress with a fitted crossover bodice containing woven gold green and red cording. These were popular in the 70’s usually floor length and always solid with embellishment on the bodice. Grandmother you’re killing it!

My parents married in the mid-late 70’s…yes, should know the date but I don’t so anyway it’s all 70’s , one only has to look at the belled sleeves and side burns ! Way to go Dad, nice burns  (high five!)

Being Sweet

If you haven’t noticed, this is a winter wedding. December 26th to be exact. My Mom always preferred winter, darling you are such a romantic, and the church was already decorated for Christmas…so practical as well.

*Note the evergreen trim and red, white and green colors all over. AND! If it snowed white, how lovely.

Even if this isn’t a summer wedding the colors and feelings are the same. Weddings are happy times and the photos make for a most excellent fashion time capsule!

Fashion note worthy weddings:

Elvis and Priscilla 1967


Bill and Hillary 1975

Bill and Hillary 2

And another just for fun one of them as grad students!

Bill and Hillary

Elizabeth Taylor and Conrad Hilton (first wedding) 1950



Betty Brosmer Pinup Icon

From The Selvedge Yard (one of my favorite reads)


Some photos of the lady

Betty Brosmer 1


The coloring in the photo below is classic. Such a feminine display of pastel and delicate sheer fabric. Note the night shawl, aqua is hawt, among other things in this photo .



That Waist! measurements 38″-18″-36″…actually the more I think about it’s alien to me…she looks like she’ll just break in half…amaze! Love the strong brow!



I bet she had to have her clothes tailored…but then again I think everyone in the 1950’s had their clothes made specifically for them..like the dress shop in West Side Story, seriously that would be awesome.betty-brosmer-kitchen

This was her husband Joe Weider

George Costanza


Ahahah! Just Kidding! Here he is..Joe was a body builder…go figure.


Qipao! That’s a Hot Asian Dress!

The Qipao or Cheongsam dominates today’s study

From chinatoday.com, I don’t’ think I could have written it better (smirk)


As a traditional Chinese dress. Qipao is like a wonderful blossom in China’s bright-colored fashion scene. Because of its unique charm, many women wear it to show their special grace.

The history of Qipao
In the early 17th century in North China, Nurhachi, set up the Eight
Banner System. Later he led his troops into Beijing and overthrew the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). After years, a collarless tube-shaped gown was well developed, which was worn by both genders. This is the early version of the Qipao. It became kind of popular among the royal palace of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) to show the Manchu nobility.

Most of them were made of silk, and embroidered, with thick laces trimmed at the collar, sleeves and edges. The dress empresses of past dynasties wore them. Their style of dress was noted as the highest of standards for Chinese women
for several thousand years.

Qipao characterize Chinese women’s modesty, softness and beauty. Like Chinese women’s personality.

Like many fashions, the beauty of Qipao stands away from others.
Stunning is one of its features from the collar, loop, chest, waist
and hips to the lower hem. Qipao completely shows off a woman’s figure. Not only does it lay stress on the natural beauty of a female figure, but also makes women’s legs appear more slender.

I don’t know where the inspiration came from to purchase a Qipao or before I knew the real name I called it a Chinese style dress. I was looking through etsy and came across this one. So highly stylized but I liked it the moment I saw it. It would be mine..oh yes, it would be mine.

I felt a little strange like I did when I bought the nautical one, will I be in costume?  I don’t normally go with “themes” just what looks good on me. Maybe I was seeing them in the vintage shops and thought, wow that would really hug my curves…I like it . Bodycon and mini skirts usually look good on me because of the curves so I stick with that, ladies we got to work with what we’re given.

And I’m not going to lie, I was kinda interested in this guy awhile back who dug Asia and the cultures. I thought, what the hey? He’ll probably think it’s hot… and he did. Alright

Totally irrelevant story time! yay!

The night  he saw me wearing this dress he blurting out “That Dress!”, by which I laughed and said, “Oh you like it?”. Somewhat reminiscent of It’s A Wonderful Life where Violet responds to George’s compliment, “What?, this old thing!, I only wear it when I don’t care how I look.” It never came to anything except a fabulous dress so for that I’m grateful. Qipao you have done no wrong you sexy beast 😉

Back to the topic! I think I was also drawn to the use of color. Vibrant flowers with the shocking black background! Yess!! And how classic the look is. I guess from reading some things on the Qipao that it’s peak was the 1940’s and was worn internationally, it’s had some revivals in the 60’s and 70’s some in the early 1990’s and early 2000’s. I modernized my 70’s piece by turning it into a mini (note the part above about working one’s assets) it was maxi length with a thigh high slit on the left side. This one also has the traditional toggle closures and high neck with capped sleeves.

The Qipao reminds me of soft airbrushed photos from the 1940’s where ladies dress in embroidered silk to the neck, bright beguiling lip shades and  glossy black  perfectly rollered hair frames porcelain faces.

I love these photos of actress Li Lhua and Clark Gable circa 1954…note the Qipao! And her glasses! I want!

Clark and Li Lhua

Clark and Li Lhua



And some other celebs from the late 90’s to early 2000’s that defiantly pulled it off better than me…

Nicole Kidman from the film Australia

Nicole Kidman Australia

Liv Tyler post Crazy music video

Liv Tyler

Katy Perry circa 2011

Katy Perry

And who could forget Paris Hilton ahaha!

Paris Hilton




More to satisfy your curiosity:



Props to Mehreen for the photo, you’re so fancy!

Harper’s Bazaar on “Psycho”

Reblogging this one, such dynamic images!

Ina Balke


Model Ina Balke wears a white square neckline shift with lace, button pearl earrings and cocktail ring and black pointed flats, so classic.

A pattern that has a similar style.

Simplicity Pattern


Time After Time: 80’s Does the 50’s

The 50’s were snappy and who wouldn’t dig the far out 60’s ? But where totally awesome meets way cool would have to be 80’s does the 50’s. Yes, I’m a product of the 80’s which could possibly incline me towards a personal bias and perhaps a tad bit of nostalgia. But don’t worry reader, I wont start boring you with  Teddy Ruxpin stories or  how much better things were under Ronald Reagan ahahaha !

No no, here I will digest what I find to be the very best of that radical fusion!


The fashion of the 50’s is mainly in solid colors pastels and Crinoline dresses along with the slim tie and greased hair for the gents. I have a selected a few fellas and dolls that really hold it all together 😀

The Duckman!

I name The:  80’s fashion icon!

Pretty in Pink

(Note the greased hair and blazer reminiscent of the sleek suited mad men, however 80’s spin, cotton tee underneath button up shirt with popped color, though you cant see it, he has on black high water slacks and white socks and Creepers.

Let’s take a moment to talk about Creepers, they are loafer inspired almost Dr. Marten’s thickness of sole 80’s to the max. Duckie does them a service in his dancing…The Creepers!

and AND he’s wearing a brooch! a brooch (lil’ gender bend) I LOVE IT!!!!!

Duckie sings Otis Redding!!! (This post is a total indulgence! on my part, is it ok to be completely obsessed with your own post, like I just can’t get enough…thank you Depeche Mode, I could just go on and on!)

Here’s the video:


The slick pastel suit, the undone polka dot tie and I’m sure he’s wearing a pair of sleek saddle shoes or shiny patented loafers. 80’s Bowie you will always be my first love!



Bowie’s Modern Love from the 1983 album Let’s Dance is the 80’s does the 50’s  anthem, understated, pop fun and super cheesy this song has it all. (side note: adolescent Cara would blast this snap her fingers to the side and “skillfully” recreate Bowie glory , I am a lip sync master 😉  ♪♫ I know when to go out…and when to stay in ♫ I get things done ♪ ♫


Let’s move on to the Ladies:

This genre saw a mix of  high wasted skirts shoulder sloping v-necklines and strapless bodices amid the wide midi puffy skirts. Bold pastels and busy light colored prints against dark backgrounds were on the palate. the 80’s awoke the animal inside! Leopard, cheetah and zebra prints reign supreme. Did I mention lace, yes? lots of lace. Madonna ran with the idea especially picking up on the delicate and functional finger-less gloves.


Hair was big! BIG! but the bob was more important than the beehive, unless you were a part of the B 52’s 😉 Accessories were bold and numerous, continuously layered, it was kind of ridiculous, but I do enjoy the large plastic button earrings and bangle bracelets. You can find them everywhere and they are a must have! So many colors and sooo super cute!

button earrings


Classic use of 1980’s go 50’s, is the dress Kathleen Turner wears to her high school reunion in the 1986 Peggy Sue Got Married. A metallic ruffled party dress, complete with metal belt. First of all Metallic Fabrics yikes! But the way the designers modernized the 50’s look is interesting.

Peggy Sue got married 1986 Francis Ford Coppola Kathleen Turner



They drop the waist but keep the figure of the 50’s silhouette by maintaining a form fitting bodice and adding a belt. Also the ruffles blend in the country square dance thing that went around in the late 50’s . This is  a really fun fantasy film as well as being directed by Francis Ford Coppola it had to be a gem.

Since I continue to list movies lets look at a few other favorites.


Little Shop of Horrors! Audrey is AMAZE, how small is Ellen Greene’s waist!


Love love love the cheetah print wiggle dress and heels! Adorbs!!

The Outsiders…a little bit of jean, a whole lot of hunk 😉



Nothing says summer and the 80’s like Dirty Dancing!

Pastel pinked, jorts, white ked’s Yay!

Dirty Dancing



And por final, a bit of kitsch…

Nicole I think this was hanging in your room in middle school/high school ha ha!


80's mickey and mini


All Aboard!

Vintage Dress Nautical

I might have just paid $60 to look like Sailor Moon. I hear she’s having a come back so that’s not soo bad.. right?

To be frank with you dear reader, I was apprehensive to embrace the Nautical theme…by apprehensive I mean my inclination towards wearing stripes was nil,until this purchase that is. Yes, I do love it on others but in my foolishness, I felt that it was a fad that would fade out like platform penny loafers did along with the band Aqua. This is where I roll my eyes at my own silliness. Really Cara…really…have you heard of the brand NAUTICA which has been around for like EVER…really?

Now that I think on it more, the Nautical look is classic. Coco Chanel coined it. The way that she talks about form and where she finds her inspiration is fascinating. She used the striped shirts and peacoats worn by local fishermen, curving the lines into women’s fashion! Brilliant! I watched the 2009 movie Coco Before Chanel and now am thinking back on the impact it has had on me. An artist, a fashion icon who stretched the boundaries by making women’s wear both chic and comfortable. From what I gathered she wasn’t a true feminist, but she was too strong willed and intelligent to let the world dictate her art. She knew what she wanted to be wearing and she made it happen, even if the status quo said it wasn’t right. I am inspired by Chanel, her tenacity and courage.

Coco Nautical

My other inspiration 😉 : http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/05/sailor-moon-crystal-trailer_n_5455148.html

Vintage Nautical!: 

Vargas Girl


Photo by Shiv Nelson…heart you Shiv!

The Jean Jacket

An Ode to my favorite accessory… The Jean Jacket. Give me a neatly tailored denim number and I will be pressed  to find a vintage dress that doesn’t look good with it!

The Jean Jacket is beautifully versatile. Added to any outfit for the perfect statement. It might say, “Hey I’m a Punk!” if you want to pin a slashed death metal band shirt on the back.  Or “Howdy Partner where you’d get those dungaroos?” should you wear a pair of jeans the same color to complete the Texas Tux. A, “Hey I work in a records shop in one of those ubiquitous 80’s teen movies and I’m soo cool” image is accomplished with  a few band buttons to the right below the collar and the obligatory fedora. Or throw some acid on it, roll up the cuffs and rock your heart out 1992.

Bedazzled with spikes and/or rose painted on the back, whatever its fashion orientation, almost too tiny jean jacket, I love you.

Uncle Jesse

TIME: Featuring Julie Andrews

Since we’re on the topic of Sound of Music, I stumbled upon some old TIME magazines at this marvelous antique shop settled in an old house and even more marvelous is the name, “Everything But My Grannie’s Panties” otherwise known as Grannie’s Panties by Durhamites.

So here’s an article featuring Julie Andrews and the release of Sound of Music, I added a few saucy advertisements to go with the Retro vibe…



2nd page

At the banquet


Ordained a Queen

Pizza Flavor!

Julie and Richar Rodgers

Last page