dressmaking · Fun days out · Vintage style

The Bling Clutch and the LBD

Hi there!

Thanks so much for visiting my blog 🙂

Every girl needs a little black dress and earlier this year I found an absolute gem at a bargain price. It was during a visit to Leyburn in North Yorkshire, home to my favourite charity shop, which raises funds for St Teresa’s Hospice. My sister, mum and I have found some amazing clothes and accessories here over the years but on this occasion I left feeling particularly smug.


I think the dress dates from the 1980s or 1990s. It’s black velvet with a high neck and three quarter length batwing sleeves. It comes in at the waist and is fitted around the hips, finishing just below the knee on my 5ft11 frame. But it’s at the back where things get exciting as it features an open back fastened at the top with two beautiful sparkly buttons.


As you can see, the label says St Micheal’s, which is the name I remember Marks and Spencer giving to their clothes when I was a little girl. Check out the bargain price!

I bought the dress in the spring so I’ve had to wait almost six months to wear it. But last weekend my friends, Helen and Vanessa, and I enjoyed a night out in Edinburgh and I finally got my chance. Below are some pictures taken in the hotel before we hit the town.


To quote the hilarious Gok Wan – “Accessories are what separates us from the animals.” I’m not sure if I would go that far but I do love my jewellery and I wanted to wear something with added sparkle with my special dress. I settled on a lovely diamanté set that belonged to my late grandma who sadly passed away last year. Grandma Ethel was a very stylish woman and I think she would have liked this outfit.


The finishing touch for the ensemble was my clutch bag, which I made a few days before the trip using the Newlook K6723 pattern. I already had a beautiful piece of silver upholstery fabric in my stash and had recently been given some sparkly buttons so my bling clutch bag was completely free – yay! More money for cocktails. The bag was really quick to make but it did take me and the ladies at sewing club a while to get our heads around the instructions. I’ve taken a few pictures of the process which may help if you decided to make one for yourself.



I am so happy with my outfit, especially the dress. Although it’s most likely from the 1980s, I think it has a 1950s/ early 1960s vibe too. I can’t wait to wear it on another again.

Thanks so much for reading my blog!



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