This is Jasmine. You might think she's an Edwardian lovely who's excited by the very latest telephone technology circa 1914, but you'd be wrong. She is in fact a retro loving, L.A. dwelling, 2014 existing cutie! She bought her beautiful candelstick, rotary dial, lift off ear piece vintage phone last weekend at her very favourite flea market. And her silk and cotton kimono style house coat, possibly made in 1910 or thereabouts, she purchased online. She got it for a steal at $30 US dollars minus postage and delivery. And as for her plans this weekend, well she's holding a girlie cocktail party on the roof of her apartment and the theme is "Dress as your favourite early 20th century female". I think it sounds delightful! You can find her in my shop here.
Long before Rudolf Nureyev and Mikhail Baryshnikov there was Vaslav Nijinsky.
I absolutely adore the top image which is a costume design by Russian painter and set designer Léon Samoilovitch Bakst for the ballet L'après-midi d'un faune (Afternoon of the Faun). Nijinski choreographed and starred in this ballet which was performed by the Ballet Russes in 1912. You can see Nijinski with his co-star Lydia Nelidova mid performance in the photograph below.
I love that Virginia Woolf got her older sister Vanessa Bell, a post - impressionist painter, to illustrate her book covers. They were apparently very close with Vanessa once quoted as saying that after the death of their mother, she and her sister "formed together a close conspiracy", and of course they later became a pivotal part of the Bloomsbury Group. In fact, although Virginia was possibly the more famous of the two sisters, it was Vanessa who along with her brother Thoby created the Bloomsbury Group. Vanessa had a "Friday Club" where she would meet with and entertain her artist friends, and Thoby had his "Thursday Evenings" for his writer friends and so by merging these two evenings together the Bloomsbury Group was born.
I have collected together a few of my favourite Vanessa Bell covers for her sister's books along with two photos of Vanessa and one of the two sisters together playing cricket.
Photos of Vanessa from here and here. Photo of Vanessa and Virginia playing cricket from here. Book covers from here, here and here.
This illustration by the American artist Jessie Willcox Smith is called A Mother's Days which I thought was pretty appropriate considering it's Mother's Day today!
Jessie Willcox Smith's illustrations are in the classic Arts and Crafts/ Art Nouveau style which isn't surprising as she did most of her work around the turn of the last century. She worked for magazines and periodicals such as Ladies' Home JournalandScribner's Magazine, but it is her work for the children's book The Water-Babies that is most well-known and loved. I have a selection of the 12 illustrations she did for The Water-Babies below. Aren't they sweet?
Apparently it is the 150 year anniversary of the London Underground. To celebrate, the London Transport Museum is having an exhibition of posters designed for what was/is the world's first underground railway. The posters span the period from 1908 to the present day. I thought they were very stylish!
An issue or two ago Vanity Fair had an interesting article about the Summer of Love and the San Francisco scene in 1967. You can read the article here. It was interesting for me because it, amongst other things, talked about the poster artists who were quite an important component of the whole scene. The four most influential artists working in San Francisco were Wes Wilson, Stanley Mouse, Alton Kelley and Victor Moscoso. Of course, the other big name in psychedelic art was Sydney boy Martin Sharp, but he was working across the Atlantic in London at that time. I did a post about him a while back which you can read here.
So, for your viewing pleasure I have collected together a selection of my favourite posters from that era. Happy Sunday!
Stanley Mouse and Alton Kelley
Posters by Victor Moscoso and bottom right, the man himself.
Something else I found in my ignored cupboard (see original post here): my collection of book marks. The avid collector strikes again!
These are a real find! I used to get these at Glebe Books when there was just the one store up by the church. I wonder if they still have them? I never used them as book marks. I used them to decorate various bare bedroom walls I was living in at the time. I have many more too, but these are the nicest.
I was investigating the pochoir method of print making the other day and came across these gorgeous insect prints by E.A.Seguy. It's very possible that you've seen them in your travels as they are now quite popular as posters. I had seen them around, but I had no idea how old they were. Most of them are about 100 years old. The mayfly and dragon fly prints are particularly pretty. I feel I could possibly identify these insects in the wild if I had to based of these lovely prints.
Someone groovy peering throught the Art Nouveau window of a Biba store circa 1966
I've been looking through my mother's ancient magazine collection again. This time I chanced upon a Life Magazine from 1966. This issue is full of choice articles such as "Spread of Swinging Revolution - even the peers are going 'mod'" and "Anarchists in Holland". The images here are from the article dedicated to the groovy new fashions sweeping through the "mod" world and it's called "So long, Sad Sack".
Some of my favourite quotes from this article are:
"The way-out styles already have appeared in such disparate metropolises as Paris and Chicago and may eventually change the whole raison d'etre of male dress."
"If your clothes aren't way out, you're on your way out."
...and this caption for the photograph below: "With Chicago's Marina City, a way-out symbol of tomorrow looming behind them, boys show off their op-arty shirts and other gear of the Midwest Mod from a shop called The Man at Ease."