Velvety Goodness

I do love the way fashions go around in circles. And I always marvel at the way something I thought was hideous three years earlier gradually becomes so appealing as it appears in window displays, walking down the street on some hot fashionista type, or in the glossy pages of my fave mag (except glossy pages are now matte, so chique). Similarly I laugh, or gag, at what I once believed to be a thing of beauty, but would now happily flush down the toilet. And I know that this all happens quite naturally, and then will eventually start turning back around again. Fashion circles. Quite fascinating.

When I was a child, I thought of velvet as an item in a dress up box, or something from the “olden days” which were probably the seventies in my young mind. I liked the feel of it, but I never would have worn it unless I was playing Kings and Queens and Princesses with my nursery friends. And when I got little older I was generally annoyed at velvet because whenever I was helping mum to cut it out (usually for some kind of Cadbury’s advert) it left millions of tiny little purple hairs all over my clothes.

But for a few years now I’ve seen it popping up here, there and everywhere. Photos of friends at Glastonbury in velvet bandeau tops, or women walking the streets of Wellington with velvet skirts or leotards. I think they’ve all looked fantastic, but I guess I didn’t ever have the confidence to wear it myself, and I don’t find myself at many festivals these days…

Last Christmas though, my bestie convinced me to try on a black velvet jumpsuit in Urban Outfitters. I did, and I LOVED IT. Strangely, I left the changing rooms and hung it back on the rail. She looked at me as though I was mad, and insisted on going halves for my Christmas pressie. I really did love it, but I just imagined it hanging in my wardrobe forever not being worn. She made me promise not to let that happen, and it has indeed become one of my favourite items. It was even part of my tiny clothing exhibition. I sincerely hope the circle of fashion never gives me the inclination to flush it down the toilet.

I was recently told by a friend to start following @thejungalow on Instagram for it’s velvet and bohemian colour. It made me laugh because it reminded me of how much my own taste for interior design loops in circles. I used to love as much colour as possible, everywhere and anywhere. Then suddenly almost everything had to be white, with little pops of colour usually in the form of a tidily framed artwork, or perhaps a hanging plate. But now whenever I see a picture from The Jungalow I just want to jump into it. I’m back to the beginning again. Just more refined!

So this year I’m totally into the velvet thing. I’m on the hunt in every op shop I enter, and have found some amazing vintage curtains. The first thing I made was a giant pink bean bag which went so beautifully with my totally on-trend dark green wall (a trend which I’m hoping lasts at least until we sell our house). And friends have been on the look out for me too, I’ve had some amazing deliveries or burnt orangey-red and beautiful deep pink velvets which I’ve started turning into round vintage style cushions. I’ve enjoyed making them, turning something old into something new has always been something I find incredibly satisfying. And I’m so happy with how they’ve turned out. This weekend I’m lucky enough to have them on display and for sale with the beautiful reupholstered vintage furniture by Red Couch here in New Plymouth. Check out Kristina’s work here…..  And if you’re local, go down and check out her open weekend!


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