Saturday, July 17, 2010

Coming Clean

Time to come clean!  Some of you who I talk to on Twitter (correction:  used to talk to on Twitter!) or via email already know that over the past few months I've developed this awful inflammation in my hands from too much typing and repetitive-motion computer work.  I've had a hard time crocheting too, which is why you haven't seen a new project in a while.  It's also hard to sew when your hands hurt.

Dear readers, I do hope that you'll understand that this is why the pace of blogging and listing new items in the shops have slowed w-a-a-a-y down as of late.  I have to limit my computer time right now or risk further difficulties. Still, you'll have a brand new Tommorrow's Vintage Collectibles post this week, and then I'll take a short blogging break in order to post some vintage sewing patterns at

So, enjoy this rather silly late 1960s Joy diswashing liquid commercial, which is good for a gander at the hairdos and frocks of the period if nothing else:

And don't forget to enter the July Meet the Artist giveaway for a vintage-style fancy dress "whimsy" hat by Bennett Millinery.  It will be perfect with your little black dress at your next soiree!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Madison Avenue Monday: Who's Home Crocheting?

...not me...the weather's just too hot for woolen yarn right now. Though apparently you can and should crochet in any weather!

From McCall's Needlework &Crafts
Spring-Summer 1972

Friday, July 9, 2010

Meet the Artist: Bennett Millinery

This month I'd like to introduce you to incredibly talented Kelly of Bennett Millinery on Etsy. I was lucky to meet her on my visit to the Lacis Museum of Lace and Textiles! I interviewed Kelly and learned more about her background and inspiration for her line of fancy dress hats, whimsies, and pins:

Tell us a little about yourself, and please tell us a bit about your fabulous job at the Lacis Museum of Lace and Textiles! 

I grew up in a town called Waukegan, which is just outside of Chicago, IL. We were a science-fiction and dress-up family with closets full of home made costumes and I don't think I ever outgrew that. My mother taught me to sew early on, but I didn't take it to heart until later. By the time I graduated with my BA in Sociology from UVA, I had decided to give it all up and invest in my creative career instead. I left the East Coast, moved to California, and now I have a closet full of my very own home made costumes.

For the past four years I have worked at Lacis Museum of Lace and Textiles, which turned out to be a constant source of inspiration for me. My days are saturated with antique textiles, costume, embroideries, and lace, as well as a steady stream of interesting and awesome people who come to the store to shop and ask for advice on everything from building a Burning Man wardrobe, to analyzing Viking needlework, to designing a wedding dress. I'm fortunate enough to have worked in the collection restoring textiles and setting up exhibits, as well as helping customers on a day-to-day basis.

Please tell us about your fancy dress hats and whimsies. Where does your creative inspiration come from?

Sass! If if brings a swish to your walk or a swagger to your step, then that's worth doing. Vintage fashions are always a good springboard and lately I've been taking my design inspiration from nature with my line of Bug Hats (it started with a ladybug and now there are birds, butterflies, and beetles of all kinds). I thrive off of the whimsical and fantastical, but really I'm all over the map. There is only one rule: if it looks good, do it!

What are your favorite materials to work with? 

The fantastic thing about headdress is that it can be made out of anything. Of course my favorite materials are those that create exciting textures, both visually and to touch. Feathers, rhinestones, fur, felt, ribbons, etc., but especially the combination of all of them - it should make your heart skip.

What other crafts do you enjoy?

I make costume of all kinds. I have implemented everything from embroidery and braiding to carpentry and electronics in my work.

Where can we find you online?

Apart from my Etsy shop, photos of past projects, selfish projects, and other things I have done can be found on Flickr at


Giveaway time!  Kelly has generously offered her vintage-style Black Beetle Whimsy (it will look fabulous on you at your next fancy dress party!) as a gift to one lucky Serendipity Handmade reader:

To enter:

1. Visit Bennett Millinery on Etsy and leave a comment on this post about the fancy dress hat or whimsy of your choice. (Required)

To increase your chances of winning, you have the option to do one or more of the following.  For each action post one additional comment on this post:

2. Follow Serendipity Handmade with Google Friend Connect in the right margin.

3. Follow Serendipity Vintage on Twitter and tweet or retweet about this giveaway:

Giveaway! Win a #vintage-style fancy dress whimsy from Bennett Millinery at @SerendipityVint

4. Like the Serendipity Vintage Facebook page.

UPDATED: This giveaway is open to all readers and will end on July 29th at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time. on July 31st at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time . The winner will be drawn by random number at and announced on August 1st! Be sure to leave your email address, website link, or profile link as part of your comment so I can easily contact you.  Good luck to everyone!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Let Freedom Ring

Learn more about this collectible Disney-issued pin in
an upcoming
Tomorrow's Vintage Collectibles.

Have a safe and happy 4th of July!