Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Design For Glamour

Hello everybody and welcome to any new readers who have found me through the Black Nell Robe!  Since the release of the pictures of the very beautiful model Morgana in my Black version of The Nell Robe, things have stepped up a gear here at Betty Blue's HQ.  Before I knew it I had completely sold out of Small's, have only 1 left in Medium and 2 in Large!  And I have had many an email begging me to tell them when and if I will be getting more Small's in.

Well I have been busy as a bee trying to organise more of these beauties being made, and I think I'm nearly there.  The robe has been a nightmare for my factory so hats off to them for doing such a sterling job.  The problem being that the black fabric is A LOT more stretchy than the red (despite being the exact same fabric from the exact same supplier) so is a complete nightmare to sew the lace panels into.  But fear not my lovely followers, we think we may have figured this baby out and mastered the art of making it!  So hopefully very soon I will be able to tell you all when I will be getting more in!  In the meantime why not sign up to my new mailing list so you can be one of the first to know when the Small's get into my office.  You can do so here.

In between panicking about the Black Nell Robe, I recently discovered a vintage clothing/accessories/kitchenalia/bar accessories/furniture shop just 5 minutes down the road from my house.  DANGEROUS!!!  I have already bought way too much stuff.  But one particular item I just had to share with you is a book called "Design For Glamour". 

In essence it is a book all about the art of glamour and how to achieve it.  It was first published in 1945, written by Terry Hunt who also wrote "Exercise and Keep Fit".  There is indeed a chapter on how to exercise for 'Conditioning for Health and Beauty' in this book.

The book was £5 so not one of my usual bargains, but I knew I had to have it when I opened it and it stopped on the chapter 'Fifty Beauty Hints'.

My favourite hint is number 5 and something which I am afraid I am guilty of:

5.  Winter does not excuse you for having "fuzz" on your legs.  Sheer hose does not hide it.  Use a depilatory.

I'm sure you have done it too in the winter.  In a rush to get out of the door and out, instead of bothering to shave your legs (or wax or whatever) just popped on a pair of stockings and hope that it will cover up those pesky hairs.  I then read on and number 7 made me giggle

7.  Hair on your arms is ugly.  The five-and-ten-cent stores sell a bleaching kit that will make these almost invisible - use it.

What I love is the after thought - use it - like they're trying to enforce the importance of not having arm hair haha.  Anyone who has really hairy arms, if they bleached it, it would just make them blonde; ie it doesn't actually make them any less visible as they are still there!  If anything it makes it more obvious as people stare and think why on earth have they bleached their arm hair?!?!  Teehee but I'm sure the writer had people's best intention at heart.

Another tip?  Well this one is a great one:

39.  Don't wear shoes two sizes too small because it is the fashionable thing to do.  Be sure your shoes fit you and so avoid corns, bunions and calluses.

...........Really don't think I could get my feet into shoes two sizes too small!  Number 50 is a nice one though:

50.  Learn to be generous, open - minded, kindly, decent in your attitude towards others.  These emotions will eventually be reflected in your face and will attract people to you.

I wholeheartedly believe in number 50.  It is the 'same as what goes around comes around' or Karma.  Also I'm of the opinion that if you change your attitude to positivity and 'things will go well for me' then generally positive things start happening in your life.

This book really is a gem and totally worth the £5 I spent on the old tatty book.  I think I will probably do more posts in the future taking inspiration from some of the chapters.  The foreword entices us in by stating:

"Glamour is that curious something which makes a girl look like a Poiret model in a $2.98 dress"

Well yes please, I'll have me some of that!!!  My business is all about how to achieve glamour in your everyday life so I'm sure we can learn a lot from this book - after all there is a WHOLE chapter on 'Your Perfume', intriguing!

Until next time, keep glam ladies and shave/wax those legs!
Betty xxx

P.S Don't forget to sign up to my new newsletter so you don't miss out on the Black Nell Robe this time!!!  To do so click here.

P.P.S IF you want one now and are either a Medium or Large, I do have a few in stock!!!  So go poste haste to my website ;-) and you will get it in a few days instead of weeks.

Monday, 18 June 2012

Move Over Dita Von Teese - Betty's in Town!

Move over Dita Von Teese, there is a younger, paler but red headed girl on the scene!

I kid of course, no one could replace the beautiful Dita, but I have long been told about my resemblance to the Queen of Tease.  I never really used to understand why, but obviously it was a huge compliment.  I could see that we both have pale skin, wear red lipstick and I sometimes wear my hair 1940's styley, but to me that is where the similarities ended.  Are people really that silly that they think anyone with mildly vintage looking hair, pale skin and red lippy look like Dita Von Teese?  Well that is what I thought, yes people really are that stupid.............until I took a trip to Iberian Black Arts for a makeover shoot/my latest product shoot.

I did of course do a blog post a few weeks ago about my decision to model which you can read here.  I previously worked with Morgana on my Uni final collection and more recently she modelled The Black Nell Robe, and she did a phenomenal job, so I knew was in good hands. 

Can you guess who my main inspiration was for my Uni Final Collection?
Having been a model herself she would be able to direct me into poses AND she is her own make up artist so she would be able to prettify me.  I had also seen her series of make over blogs which proved her credentials again.  This girl is a genius and I urge you to book her for a make over shoot as she will transform you into a princess!

So without further adooo, here are the results of the shoot, showcasing the new Tempest Bed Jacket, Babydoll and Brief set.

This is how I imagine my customers lounge around their houses, as do I of course ;-)

Now can I just state I have not shown these shots to my Dad.  It was A LOT less see through in daylight!!!  But hey ho!  This set is inspired by the infamous Tempest Storm and Bettie Page Tease-o-rama video.  Tempest Storm wears a rather alluring basque set in varying transparencies of black mesh.  So using this as a starting point, I created a naughty little set to captivate and titillate like the great Ms Storm herself.  The whole set is rather nicely finished of with a ruffly trim that helps the skirt stick out and become all flirty and fun to cavort around in ;-).  Rather more daring than the last BBL babydoll set, The Bridgette Babydoll and Brief Set, but something truer to my lingerie roots (I studied Lingerie design at Uni).  It is made from a soft sheer black mesh and details include those fun ruffles and a giant bow over the bust on the Babydoll.  I am in talks with my factory about this lovely little item so more details on the price and date of arrival to come in the near future!  But if anyone is absolutely desperate to get their hands on one, just give me an email with your name and size and I will make sure one has your name on it when I do get them in :)

Some other of my shots as a model I have already released.  I updated the product picture of The Marilyn Rain Bonnet to be shown on a person, instead of on my trusty head stand Doris.

The Marilyn Rain Bonnet in Powder Pink.  Also available in Black.

This picture did indeed prompt more Dita Von Teese comparisons.  My new nickname is Red Dita :).  And it has given me an idea, I will happily dye my hair black and wear green contact lenses if someone wishes to sign me to a lookielike agency, I'm thinking there could be some money in this.  And if the price is right I will even take my clothes off, heck I already seem to have inadvertently done that in the above photos!  I do of course need a Dita wardrobe first, so please buy my loungewear here so I can afford designer shoes and dresses :-D

The final shots that were taken are of another brand new BBL item, The Hedy Teddy.  I named it after Hedy Lamarr, not because it was inspired by her vintage beauty, rather because it rhymes with teddy and made me giggle.

Buuuut I doubt the fashion industry has a sense of humour, they take themselves very seriously, so the official line is yes it was inspired by Hedy Lamarr ;-).

The Hedy Teddy is made of a gorgeously sumptuous stretch satin in baby blue.  It hugs to your every curve and also has an adjustable tie at the bust, so will fit an array of bust sizes.   I have VERY LIMITED amounts of this fabric so as yet I am unsure how many will be on sale, so when this goes up in the website, if you want one you had better not delay as I am pretty sure I won't be able to get this colour fabric again.  I will of course let you know as and when I know when my factory will be making this.

So to round up this mammoth blogety post there are several things I have learnt about modelling.

1.  I am in fact a lot paler than I thought I was.
2.  I am a lot bigger than I think I am (years as a teenager of biatches telling me "do me a favour love, eat more" and that I look anorexic has given me somewhat of a complex.  Like people who think they look fat when they aren't except the opposite, I am not in actual fact a skeleton.  I have some roundness to me.  Not my fault your fat bitchezzzz, keep your body issues to yourself!)
3.  Poses that look elegant and relaxed and comfortable, are in fact horrifically uncomfortable and do not at all make you feel elegant.
4.  There is a difference between ballet pointy toes and model pointy toes.  What my ballet teacher would think is excellent footwork is too pointy for modelling.
5. Modelling isn't as scary as I thought it would be.  It was actually quite enjoyable!
6.  I guess, if you squint, I kinda do look a bit like Dita Von Teese.

Lots of Love
Betty xxxx

Sunday, 10 June 2012

Portsmouth Vintage Fair

I am a little cautious of doing selling events such as Vintage Fairs.  My price point is quite high so there are not many people who impulse buy from Betty Blue's Loungerie.  People tend to have to think about their purchase and save up for a splurge, so often the cost of the hire of the stall far outweighs my sales.  Last weekend however I changed my mind about stalls at events.

With the Queen's Diamond Jubilee I felt as a British girl born and bred I should really do something to celebrate.  So when I saw Naomi at Vintage Secret and of The Vintage Mafia advertising the Victorious Vintage at Portsmouth's Historic Docks, I jumped at the chance to take part.

Gratuitous Boat Shot
The last time I went to the Portsmouth Docks must have been when I was about 7 or 8 with my school to see The Mary Rose.  Driving through the Docks to set up my stall was lovely, I can't say I remembered it, but the boat houses and general area had a lovely historic feel about it.  A perfect location to celebrate all things British at the sight of the Victory and The Mary Rose!  There were also some big modern looking boats docked there too but I can't remember which ones they were. 

I shared my stall with the lovely Katie at Katie Vale Designs.  Her skill is in Millinery and her hats were a perfect compliment to my loungewear; being around the same price point and a similar target customer.  Here is Katie looking very patriotic in her own handmade red, white and blue hat.

(Later on in the weekend a young man tried this hat on and we all agreed that it actually suited him more than any lady that had tried it on haha).  You can see a few of her lovely creations in this picture and some of my posters in the background :).  Katie hand makes each and every one of her hats.  Some of her hats take 5 whole days to craft, now that is dedication for you!

A shot of my "poodle hair" for my twitter friend @splendidstitches :)
The weather was surprisingly good in Portsmouth considering London and pretty much the whole of the rest of the country was a wash out.  So on the first day I wore a pretty red and white cotton dress with a blue cardi..........I must admit the dress was a wee bit too tight for me teehee.  I haven't got another pic of it unfortunately so the above will have to do!

What was lovely about this event is that it was a really family orientated event.  There were lots of family's milling around and even my Mummy came down to help me out on the stall.

Mama Blue's, Betty and Stylish Customer
I was glad not to be the only stall holder who's mum occasionally helps out.  The lady in the stall next to us, which was a vintage clothing stall, had her mum helping out as did Ellie of Darlings Vintage :).

My mummy even brought this cake along which she made, to give out free to people to help celebrate for our Queenie.  The cake originally had a Union Jack around the picture of our Queen in 1952, but it broke up whilst putting on the cake so we rescued it with gold glitter and gold balls!!  (The glitter makes your poo glittery ;) teehee).

Sneaky peek at the Tempest set ;-)
On the Sunday I wore my trusty Rita Siren Suit.  The weather forecast lied and said it was going to be cold and rainy, so for most of the day I boiled in this; although the green looked sooooo pretty in the sunshine.  In this picture I am posing with my trusty mannequin that got me through Uni.  Her name is Maria (came with the name, I'm not one of those crazies that names inanimate objects) and Maria certainly got lots of attention that weekend!  Maria is wearing the new, never before seen, Tempest Babydoll, Bed Jacket and Knicker set.  A sheer black delight, with girlie ruffles, inspired by the infamous video clip of Bettie Page and Tempest Storm.  The wind kept blowing her bed jacket open and exposing the sheerness of the babydoll ;).  The men of Portsmouth were certainly impressed!!

The highlight of my weekend must have been the following pictures.

On my lunch break I went to the little tea house around the corner from my stall and saw this awesome display!  The brown teapot at the back has a smaller decorative teapot on the lid!!  This thing was HUUUGE and £315!  I NEED THIS IN MY LIFE!!!!!!!!  If all my readers could please go to my website and order some items of beautiful loungewear it would be much appreciated, because then I would be able to buy this much needed item!  Alternatively if someone would like to donate me some money so I can indeed buy this then please get in contact :) betty@bettybluesloungerie.  I think you will all agree this is a bargain at £315 teehee.

The crinoline lady and racing car teapots were also some of my favourite, but not as much of a statement piece as the big brown one ;-).  They were also a lot more affordable at around £35/£45.

Anyway back to Betty Blue's Loungerie!  Details of the Tempest set will come soon, I am in talks with a new factory at the moment so will hopefully have more info on them very very soon for you all :).  I will leave you all with a picture of another Jubilee themed item.

A quilted Union Jack cover for 'The Throne' ;-).  I'm so proud my mummy won a competition at her quilting club for this.  She won on the novelty/giggle factor, not necessarily her quilting skills teehee.

Lots of Love
Betty xxx

P.S Hi to my blog followers who talked to me at the fair!  Was lovely to meet you and I'm glad you are both enjoying my blog, and your lovely red Nell Robe ;-)

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Change In Postage Charges


Well the Jubilee festivities are over (and I personally am knackered!!!) and everyone is back to work.  I will post about the Jubilee event I took part in, but for now I am posting about a change in my postage charges.

If you have ordered from me before you will have been charged a flat rate of £6 for UK postage and £11 for EU and International postage regardless of weight of the parcel.  I have always sent parcels fully insured and by the fastest service possible.  I have always shipped this way as if a parcel goes missing in the post, as they sometimes do, I can claim back the cost of the items sent should anything go awry.  You may be aware that in April UK postage prices were raised.  This means I am unfortunately no longer able to absorb the extra cost in my margin.

So I have devised a staggered postage cost system:

£4.50 - Standard UK 1st Class Delivery
£8.50 - UK Special Delivery (fully insured, guaranteed next day delivery, trackable)
£11.00 - EU and International Shipping
£24.00 - EU and International Express Shipping (fully insured, express service, trackable)

The main difference is that you will now have to pay a little more to get guaranteed next day delivery, and for your items to be fully insured.  This means it is your responsibility should your package go missing in the post, unless you pay for the fully insured, trackable option.

In a way this is a good thing as now, if you are UK based, you can choose to pay only £4.50 instead of £6.00.  So every cloud has a silver lining :)

In other BBL news, if you pre ordered The Black Nell Robe in either a Medium or Large, you should be getting them through the post veryyyyyy soon :).  If you ordered in Small fear not, yours will be with me soon and I shall let you know when I have them!!!

Photos of Jubilee funness to come soon I promise!

Lots of Love
Betty xxx