Put on a Happy Face! Featuring Dick Van Dyke and Disneyland

As anyone who follows me on my various other social medias is aware, this past week I had the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to meet one of my idols and have been unable to stop talking about it since. What originally began as a simple plan to take a much needed trip to Disneyland for a few days was upended by Phoenix Comicon’s announcement about a month ago that an astonishing guest was joining the line up: the incredibly talented, dashing icon of a man, Dick Van Dyke.

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While I’ve always had a great appreciation and love for the man since I grew up with Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and Mary Poppins, it wasn’t until I first began watching the Dick Van Dyke Show a few years ago that my appreciation began to grow exponentially. Of all of the actors and actresses out there, he’s been my favorite of the lot. With his gracefully goofy ability to execute all ranges of comedy, and his perfect family of costars Mary Tyler Moore, Rose Marie, and Morey Amsterdam, the Dick Van Dyke Show has gotten me through the many ups and downs of my life the last few years. Upon reading his book, “My Lucky Life in and Out of Show Business” and the discovery of his vocal quartet group, Dick Van Dyke & the Vantastix, I came to realize that he is one of my few idols who’s still alive and kicking – and boy is he kicking!

When the stars aligned and we realized we could pull off meeting Dick Van Dyke, we immediately went to work on last minute outfits for Comicon and could think of much little else.

While I debated for awhile whether I ought to create this blog post since I think I’ve worn the topic to death, I decided to write it up as a memento and diary entry of sorts for future me! So, apologies for the gushing and rambling that will inevitably happen. The excitement is something I don’t ever want to lose!

Part 1: Disneyland!

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Since I never managed to take a graduation trip for myself (being jobless and all for a few months after getting my Masters,) my lil sis Julide (who just graduated from high school) decided to combine our trips and take a Disneyland weekend for ourselves. As always, we simply HAD to Disneybound!

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My roommate Lauren and I had planned a Pinocchio bound awhile ago for a cancelled trip that was going to take place on a hot summer day, so my sister hopped on the bandwagon and we opted for the group bound that would help keep us coolest in steamy weather. Ironically, it was freezing! While my roomie and I had something to throw on over our looks, poor Julide was shivering all day long.

We drove up to Anaheim after Lauren and I got off of work and got into our hotel around midnight. Excitement kept us awake longer than intended, but we soon crashed and woke a few hours later to prepare for our outing.

My look was composed of a Pinocchio Mickey ear hat that I’d seen in the parks for ages before deciding to make use of it, a black shrug sold by Pinup Girl Clothing awhile ago, a 50s bustier/bikini top that I strung a blue piece of fabric through, an apple brooch (to represent the apple he has when beginning his journey), a 60s overskirt from the Instagram shop Far From Here Vintage, 50s shorts from Etsy, and old character shoes that I cut the strap off years ago. The whole outfit was then topped with the perfect vintage cottage purse:

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My sister’s dress was from Forever 21, and my roommate’s Jiminy Cricket look was made up of an old cardigan, mustard scarf, and sandals paired with an infinity wrap top from Le Bomb Shop, shorts from Pinup Girl Clothing, a hat from Amazon with the ribbon changed, and a handmade Official Conscience pin.

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Although just a one day trip, we managed to meet many characters we’ve never met before including Pocahontas and (now one of my favorite characters to meet), the Shadow Man!

We also met some old favorites like Peter Pan (my sister’s absolute favorite character of all time), and, because we simply had to considering our impending meet and greet, Mary and Bert.

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Bert was perfectly goofy and charming and only raised our excitement levels.

One of the most exciting parts of the trip was getting to FINALLY head to the Red Rose Taverne. While ironic that the time we pulled together a Pinocchio group bound was when his Village Haus was made over for Beauty and the Beast, I still couldn’t really argue with the change! I’m a sucker for anything Beauty and the Beast.

I naturally tried the grey stuff (despite maybe technically being allergic to it kinda) and it was DELICIOUS. I’m hoping we can head back before the Taverne changes back because the menu options sounded absolutely mouthwatering, and we had to opt out of food since we had reservations at Cafe Orleans.

The day was overall incredibly successful. We watched both parades currently running in the parks (I wish the Electrical Parade would never leave again!), met new characters, and even went on rides we rarely go on. While we missed out on a few key things, Jungle Cruise, Indiana Jones, and Storybook, and were freezing most of the day, we had a wonderfully relaxed, happy, and successful trip with our friends Pinocchio, Jiminy, and the Blue Fairy.

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Part 2: Phoenix Comicon!

So this happened

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As mentioned above, the preparations for Comicon began as soon as we realized we were attending. Since this was Lauren and my first Comicon (as well as Dick Van Dyke’s!), we knew little of what to expect. While we’ve both attended Broadwaycon, we assumed it would operate a bit differently, and hadn’t been able to get together outfits for that anyway. This time, we KNEW we had to do something despite huge budget and time restrictions.

The crew meeting Mary Poppins and Bert! #disneybounding #disneybound #disney #marypoppins #bert #mrsbanks #disneyland

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Since we had previously put together a Mary Poppins themed bound, my sister decided to simply add to that outfit to make it into more of a costume, while Lauren wanted to put together a better Bert than what she’d done before with a pair of Pinup Girl Clothing’s 1940s Doris pants that properly matched Julide’s Jolly Holiday Mary. While I had personally loved my Mrs. Banks bound (despite nobody recognizing me in the parks), I knew I couldn’t in any way afford recreating her actual outfit and decided to go with something that I could both pull off more easily and represented someone even closer to my heart: Mary Tyler Moore’s Laura Petrie from The Dick Van Dyke Show.

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While I knew going as Laura to a Con was a risk, and that I wouldn’t get noticed in a sea of Mary Poppinses I crossed my fingers that hopefully Dick Van Dyke would realize who I was trying to represent if no one else. I tried two trial run bouffants in the time I had and perfected her hairdo, found some vintage capris with my measurements, purchased Pinup Girl Clothing’s Jane top in white, and desperately tried to repair my pointed-toe flats to pull off Laura’s perfectly casual 60s look. I was so happy with the whole thing that I think I might try to expand my wardrobe forward to the 60s (even if my curves aren’t as easily shown off by the styles).

The night before heading to Comicon, we had heard about the prop weapon ban in reaction to a man who had managed to get in loaded with weapons, and anticipated long lines to get in, but our sole worry was getting to Dick Van Dyke’s panel early enough to get a decent seat. Once we made our way in, we managed to get better seats than we’d imagined and proceeded to stock up on the snacks and coffee we’d had to forego in favor of arriving early.

Lauren and I also took the time to take a few photos for our Instagrams, quickly realizing that the lighting was absolutely atrocious and we probably wouldn’t manage to get anything in passable quality.

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But in the end, I was too excited to care or experience my usual frustration at bad lighting. After all, we only had an hour or so left before getting to hear and see Dick Van Dyke LIVE!

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Photo from Phoenix New Times

Seeing Dick Van Dyke walking on stage might be one of the happiest moments of my life. As he’s 91, we were all a bit anxious to see him in person and unsure how he would handle such a big panel – after all, you never can tell how a person’s really getting along when your only exposure is through media; yet he walked on with the biggest grin I’ve ever seen someone give in real life with a spring in his step. And that smile never left his face.

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His panel was a breath of fresh air. At a time when negativity and discontentedness seems to be celebrated, particularly among actors and artists, Dick Van Dyke’s only negative comment was an opening joke about Trump. Every question asked or story told was tied to statements of how lucky his life has been, how much he loved filming, how much he loved his costars. When asked what his favorite song from “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” was, he answered with “You Two,” surprising the audience who had been muttering “Hushabye Mountain” expectantly, and resulting in a chorus of “awws.” He talked about living in New York with a family and being jobless, and how that had pushed him to audition for anything and everything even without any experience in song and dance, which then led to him landing his role in “Bye Bye Birdie” alongside Chita Rivera, which then led Chita to suggesting he be given a song since he wasn’t doing anything, which then led to his casting in the Dick Van Dyke Show. He mentioned “Me Ol’ Bamboo” being the hardest dance he ever had to do – unsurprisingly! And his amusing story about begging to be the old banker in Mary Poppins. Perhaps the funniest moment was his story about asking a girl to prom where he walked up and her response was “Your fly’s open!” to which his response was to promptly laugh and blow snot all over her. The only moment his smile fell was when he spoke of the beautiful Mary Tyler Moore’s recent passing, a moment when the sadness was palpable in the room, but he also spoke of the best laugh the show ever got: the episode where Rob thinks they were given the wrong baby after Ritchie’s birth, only to find out that that couple their child was supposedly given to is black at the end.

My favorite moment, however, of all of these wonderful moments, was when he sang us the Dick Van Dyke Show theme song all the way through. Although he sang pieces of many other songs during the panel, this is the one that really got me. I wish I had a video to share of that spur of the moment rendition, but if you didn’t realize the song had words to it, you can hear him singing it here with his quartet:

He left the stage to a standing ovation and, of course, threw in a signature trip on his way out. I don’t think I’ve ever clapped so hard in my life!

Next on the agenda was to try to book it to our photo op with him, something scheduled for only 15 minutes after the end of his panel, and upon finally finding our way there, we realized that half of the giant auditorium was taken up by people waiting for their photo op with him as well. Phoenix Comicon had grossly overestimated the number of people that could go through within one hour, and they were understaffed. After 4 hours, we finally made it in for our photo, an experience that lasted under a minute including time to walk up and out. I was one of the few who retained her excitement for the opportunity as I had hoped that the delay was due to Dick Van Dyke being able to take a smidgen more time with fans, and was sad to find that this was far from the case. It was rumored that they had forgotten to book him a lunch, and nobody could believe that they had so crammed his schedule (autograph session, 15 minutes later a panel, 15 minutes later a photo op, 15 minutes later another autograph session, 15 minutes later another photo op). He did end up having to take a break, but was constantly having to jump between photo op and autograph sessions, and all other photo ops were postponed to try to get his line down. I am amazed that a 91 year old could keep up with this kind of pace with the smile he retained. Astonishing.

So this happened

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When we got our photo, he complimented Lauren and Julide’s outfits and asked if they were handmade basically as the picture was being taken, but he sadly didn’t get to see me since I was behind them and obviously less eye catching, and he wasn’t even given the time to glance over. It all happened so quickly that when someone was trying to let him know that “Laura” was standing there, he only had time to ask for clarification as I awkwardly hovered for a split second, hoping he’d realize what was happening, before being yelled at to leave. I was admittedly quite heartbroken, and the high from the panel left as I left the room. Everyone could tell that he was a gentleman who seemed to want to take the time to talk with fans a bit more instead of just stringing everyone through in an inhumane chain as fast as possible. Those first few moments, even the physical photo that helped serve as proof that I’d been near him, felt like a sad reminder of not even having the time to meet his gaze after more than a hundred dollars and 4 hours in line holding spots.

Luckily, this feeling was soon to change. After receiving our photo, we quickly headed to the autograph area, unsure of what was going to happen. After all, while we were a part of the second autograph group, our time had passed two hours ago. We were told it would be at least an hour before he could get to us, but he would be there, so we decided to head over and take a seat in the surprisingly sparse line. After the line of thousands we’d left, the line of around 10 seemed too good to be true. As we waited, I worked on trying to readjust my thinking and be positive again knowing that I had still experienced something unimaginable, yet before we knew it, no more than half an hour later, Dick Van Dyke was walking up to the signing table! Disappointment immediately forgotten, we all jumped up and tried to brush ourselves off and look halfway presentable again as he took his seat. We were standing right in front of him in the line, and I couldn’t believe he was truly up close. There sat an icon, yet he looked more approachable than anyone I’ve ever seen. Big grin stretching across his face, he started to greet fellow fans and sign their items.

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There was a table set up with photographs to get signed if needed, and upon seeing my favorite photo of Dick Van Dyke and Mary Tyler Moore, I packed away the little “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” booklet I’d brought in favor of the new image (if you follow me on Twitter, this sweet image has been my header photo…basically since I first got Twitter). It was made all the sweeter when he told me that this is his favorite photo. Who knew such a little comment could warm a heart so?

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When I finally got to walk up to him, he greeted me with a, “Hello, Laura!” and I honestly can’t believe I retained my calm demeanor as much as I did. He had recognized me! No explanations necessary. His wife (who was sitting beside him) asked if my hair was a wig or really my hair and I mentioned it’s easy for me since I have a lot of it, and it was nice to see Arlene involved instead of just sitting off to the side and looking bored as is often the case in such circumstances. As I had hoped (and feared), DVD asked me if I could do Laura’s iconic, “Oh, Rob!” and in the moment, while I instinctually began to oblige him, I panicked and bashfully backed out. Luckily, a chorus of “Oh, Robs” followed – including from Dick Van Dyke and Arlene – and I joined in quickly, laughing at my foolishness as I walked away.

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There’s a part of me that’s avidly against all fangirling from years of holding it back in the music scene, but it certainly happened with DVD. After we walked out with our autographs, the three of us stood nearby, gabbing excitedly with a fellow fan and gushing about how astonishing a man he is while we watched him give each new person the same kind of rapt attention. Talk about a smile that can light up a room! He’s definitely that rare kind of charismatic person who feels approachable and friendly despite his successful career and fame. And heaven, he has more energy in him now than I do! And I’m 25.

After about 8 hours devoted purely to Dick Van Dyke, we finally had the chance to walk around a bit more. Perhaps if our time had been taken up by anyone else, we would’ve been disappointed that we hadn’t been able to actually enjoy Comicon, but we had nothing but joy. We did some light shopping and entered the Doctor Who world momentarily. There, I met Cassandra, and 10 (who needed a little motherly comforting from Laura – one of my favorite photos of the night!).

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We took a few more photos where I did my best to emulate Laura (despite how different our body types are):

And Lauren and Julide finally got the chance to pose together as Mary and Bert:

Then we decided we were a bit too exhausted to stay at Comicon, had already missed all of the other panels we’d been interested in, and had a two hour drive home, so we took off. I realized I didn’t have any photos with Bert and Mary, so we snapped a few of those outside:

Along the way, Lauren happened to open the door for a Phoenix Comicon worker who had been on Dick Van Dyke’s team, and he told us that we’d been the standouts at the photo op which immediately made all remaining grievances about it disappear. Plus, I’ve had his wife and another Comicon worker find me on Instagram and tell me they appreciated my Laura Petrie, so you could say I am pretty content with my choice to emulate this marvelous woman. I was certainly the only Laura Petrie, and I was amazed at how many people knew exactly who I was and were excited by it. Of course, outside of the Dick Van Dyke universe happening, Elizabeth Taylor was the most common assumption I got, and even within it, there were a few who didn’t know Laura Petrie at all and couldn’t give more than a dismissive shrug when they were told who I was, but hell, I’m not sure if I can top my Laura Petrie considering the circumstances. I hope that I paid her a proper homage (even if I was having a bad hair day and froze up when asked to say “Oh, Rob!”), and managed to show that Dick Van Dyke did something other than Mary Poppins.

All in all, it was probably the best weekend of my life. It’s bittersweet knowing that I will never get to see his brilliant smile in person again, but I wouldn’t change the weekend for anything in the world. I definitely plan on ordering his other books next paycheck, and I haven’t wanted to watch anything but the Dick Van Dyke Show or listen to anything but his music. There’s just no-one like him around and I’m still on cloud 9. The only thing keeping me going is knowing I have a trip to New York City coming up!

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To think, this year I’ve gotten to see my musical theatre idol perform (Bernadette Peters), met my biggest idol of all time (Dick Van Dyke), and now I get to see the singer who started my love for pop rock music finally perform on the Broadway stage as I’ve always wanted him to (Brendon Urie). I can’t truly can’t imagine a better year for myself.

Have any of you met Dick Van Dyke? I’d love to hear some personal anecdotes! Also, kudos to you, if you made it through this whole post ❤️

I have a few exciting things lined up for my blog and my Youtube, including a how-to video on getting a bouffant flip, and a huge review of Besame Cosmetics’ products, so keep an eye out! And thank you, as always, for reading.

Best,

Miss Lark Bahar

I Love Lucy and She Loves Me: Savannah Alexandra’s Starlet Lucy Brooch

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Everyone has that one show, that one artist, that one…thing that really pushed them down that rabbit hole of obsession. I Love Lucy and Lucille Ball herself are certainly top of the list of things that led me to where I am today as a vintage fashion, film, decor, and music lover. With a name synonymous with comedy, Lucy continues to grace the homes of many and bring a little lighthearted joy to our lives. I can hardly count the number of times I watch I Love Lucy straight through each year, and the appreciation is so strong, that I even have little tattoos of their animated images on the backs of my legs:

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Though most of my tattoos represent a different era of my life, these Lucy and Ricky proudly show off my current loves. And besides, what’s more inspiring to have on the backs of your legs than Lucille Ball? So, when the wonderful Savannah Alexandra contacted me via Instagram in search of a collaboration, I jumped on the chance to add a little Lucy to my closet.

If you are someone who follows my Instagram, you’ll have seen this absolutely adorable sketch of me that Savannah drew recently:

The lovely @misslarkbahar~ I had a lot of fun drawing this! #artwork #retro #illustration

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Her bubbly cartoon style is immediately recognizable and perfectly translates to her three brooch designs featuring Lucy, Marilyn, and the incomparable Betty Grable.

While I love all three women in her collection of brooches, and their caricatures perfectly capture who they are, I simply can’t say no to Lucy – especially when likenesses of Lucy in accessory form are quite rare.

To wear her out and about, I decided to put together my best Lucy look to show her off to the best of her ability! Plus, I’ll take any excuse to reference my favorite comedy gal.

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I knew this look couldn’t be wasted, so donned it for a full day of shopping (for work clothes for my roomie and I, and prom shoes for my lil sis) as well as a celebratory lunch for my roomie’s promotion at my favorite local restaurant.

We first stopped by the best vintage shop in Tucson, How Sweet It Was Vintage.

As they recently received a huge supply of dead-stock lingerie, I’d been dying to head over to see if there was anything in my budget.

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What could be more like a 1950s housewife than spending the day shopping so glamorously? The unusually windy weather certainly contributed to the feel.

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Sadly, I only picked up a belt despite having my eye on a three-piece set, and left with a vow to go back when I finally start getting regular paychecks again. We then headed to lunch where I ordered one of Baja Cafe’s famous Eggs Benedict dishes and topped the whole thing off with, of course, a Bloody Mary (because do I ever drink anything else?)

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Our final destination was the local thrift store 1st-Rate 2-Hand where I purchase probably 85% of my shoes. As a friend had sent me image of a brand new collection of vintage shoes resting in the shop, I knew I had to go – we don’t often see huge piles of vintage shoes all in one place like this here!

True to form, however, most of the shoes were too small (despite half being marked my size), so I only returned home with two pairs of shoes to add to my closet.

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All-in-all, it was a successful, enjoyable day, and serving a little Lucy with my little Lucy made it all the better.

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All three of Savannah’s brooches can be found on her Etsy, and you can purchase Lucy and Marilyn either individually for $9.95 each, or add Betty in and go for the trio for $30. My Lucy is a 1.5,” sturdy gal who’s sure to last, and I love how vibrant her hair and eyes are. I can’t wait to see Savannah expand her collection and make more of her art into wearable accessories. Savannah also recently started an Instagram exclusively for her art as well as her own personal account, and I would definitely give them a follow if her art style tickles your fancy. You won’t be disappointed!

Until next time, friends and followers!

Love,

Miss Lark Bahar

 

Fly Me to the Moon: 25th Birthday

As many of you have most likely seen on my Instagram, I turned 25 this week! Quarter of a century. I can earnestly say that nothing in my life is what I thought it would be when I hit this age, yet I have so much hope for my future. There are so many things in my life that I love and I’m so much more confident in myself than I ever thought I could be, yet my professional life is at a standstill. I never had delusions that I’d be a millionaire, but I’d also seen myself traveling around the world by now even if such journeys made me a bit tight on money. One’s 20s are supposed to be a time for adventure, and the last few years have simultaneously been some of the best in my life because of the vintage community I’ve fallen into, and some of the most tedious as I solely worked on getting degrees and found myself limited to traveling to California for the occasional Disney trip at most.

Focusing on my Masters also seriously stunted my growth in arenas that I found joy in previously (dance, song, etc.), but I have hope for the future that I’ll be able to move away from Tucson again and find the time for all the things that have been missing in my life. With a Masters under my belt and a job with steady hours, a decent apartment and a passion, I’m hoping I’ve hit the stage in my life where I can start working toward making the things I love my career instead of focusing on achieving what I am expected to achieve. There’s a reason La La Land resonated with me so much!

On that note, one of the reasons I was feeling down as this birthday approached was that it would be the first birthday in half a decade that I didn’t spend in Disneyland, and my roomie and I didn’t have funds to really go out to celebrate either. This was a downer for both of us and inspired Lauren to do a little something extra this birthday. Her next few weeks were spent putting together a birthday party (with a surprise theme) for a small get together.

When I walked out, I was greeted with a moon and stars theme with everything covered in deep blues and golds.

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She not only made a hanging moon and star for a little photoshoot section, put together a marvelous spread of cheese, meats, candy and chips (as any ideal meal would be composed), but she even made me my very own piñata! Oh, and this gorgeous teal chiffon dress was the perfect gift from her for the theme.

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And the perfect birthday crown completed my look.

Since I wasn’t allowed out of my room until around 3pm, we figured “photoshoots” should be taken care of sooner rather than later  while there was still light outside

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The star, which was left unattached, was surprisingly heavy, so posing with it proved quite the challenge…

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…but we still ALL wanted to play with the star, anyway.

Of course, as the birthday girl, I remained victorious! Despite the good fight my best friend, Sisa, put up. But we somehow found it in our hearts to kiss and make up.

And of course, any proper birthday needs some good confetti action!

My lil sis arrived in the perfect blue velvet dress for the theme.

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And Lauren donned my blue Marilyn top to fit into the theme after starting with my black Marilyn.

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I HAD to get snapshots with the two best friends since there’re so few of all three of us out there. What a trio! I love the way the teal of my dress really pops.

Funny that my sis and Sisa showed up in dark blue completely coincidentally. Everything really fell into place when Lauren changed her top. Everything was so brilliantly cohesive and put together!

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I’m so grateful to Lauren for planning and making everything, and for my sis and Sisa for helping set everything up and dressing up just for me. And who else would be willing to dawn three of your custom personalized brooches for you? Definitely made me feel special, Disneyland or no! Plus, the theme goes along with so many things I love, La La Land, Beauty & the Beast….nothing could be more “Lark.” The moon, at least, is definitely going to have a permanent place in my apartment now.

After taking pictures for awhile, we ventured to our food, which included some tasty organic cotton candy on a stick.

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Aka, the perfect fodder for a sword fight!

With full tummies, we realized the sun was setting, so quickly decided on a park to take the piñata to and drove over before it became too dark to see anything. Naturally, we completely forgot the blindfold, so ended up digging through my car and found a pair of trousers destined for the thrift store to use. While not ideal…it was definitely amusing, and did the trick. To a degree.

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I was amazed at how solid Lauren’s piñata was! Really held its own as we pummeled it to death.

After the piñata (which was filled with everything from Slim Jim’s to Fun Dip), we headed back to the apartment, changed into pajamas, and put on the Live at Albert Hall version of Phantom of the Opera (since no-one will watch it with me normally), and then dove into my cake (which was a fruit tart), and opened presents.

All in all, it was a wonderful birthday party! Made turning 25 at home feel so much less daunting and dull. I’m looking forward to what life has to throw my way now that I’ve hit this milestone!

Love,

Miss Lark Bahar

This is Halloween: Adventure in the Great Wide Disneyland

Hello everyone!

As those who follow my Instagram are well aware by now, this past Monday was spent at the happiest place on Earth, Disneyland! When a friend from Long Island decided to pay a visit due to a school holiday, we figured what better way to celebrate than to take our first vacation since February? A trip to Disneyland (and vacationing in general) has been long overdue, and as my roommate and I have only made it there during Halloween-time once before, we felt this would be the perfect opportunity to try out Mickey’s Halloween Party with its special new parade. And who can turn down being able to trick-or-treat as adults?

As no Disney trip is complete without Disneybounding these days, we opted to make use of the bounds my roomie and I were originally going to showcase when we visited in August: Sorcerer Mickey, and one of Madame Upanova’s dancers from Fantasia. The perfect warm-weather bounds!

To emulate the ostriches, I opted for pairing my black Marilyn top from Le Bomb Shop with a vintage skirt of mine from the Instagram shop FarFromHereVintage. With the off-white of the skirt paired with the Western pattern ringing around, I felt the representation was as close as possible with this kind of character. It was then only a matter of accessorization.

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The cornucopia brooch, velvet necktie, earrings, and large hair bow were obvious choices to emulate one of Madame Upanova’s dancers (although I debated being the pink ostrich prima ballerina, Madame Upanova herself, I decided it wouldn’t be as “me” with the color-scheme). The two difficulties rose from deciding what to do with my shoes. I knew I wanted to try walking around in a pair of my old pointe shoes, but figured this wouldn’t last long, so ordered a back-up pair of lace-up flats from Nine West with great reviews to change into when my feet gave up. Plus, this bound was a great excuse to color a pair of my pointe shoes my favorite color! Sharpie-ing them blue and sewing on new ribbons helped fill up some time waiting in line for a concert on Saturday.

#fourtittiesandapointeshoe #eighttittiesandacastle P.S. that IS my foot

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For my hair, I finally ended up settling on a large, loose poodle-do instead of a ballet bun as it would help create the space for me to pin my bow in standing up without worry that it might fall off or fall limp. The whole thing was then topped by a gorgeous hand-painted, embellished parasol specifically painted by a friend for my bound.

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We decided to spend the first half of the day in California Adventure to save money before hopping on over to Disneyland at 3 (when the special Mickey’s Halloween Party tickets allowed entry). While we probably would have stayed at Disneyland the whole day normally, the heartbreaking impending erasure of The Tower of Terror made us commit to going there. So after styling four gals’ hair in the morning (everyone opted for wet sets this trip, so I was essentially running a salon), we made our way to the parks.

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We started our adventure by immediately booking it to Tower to grab our fast passes for the ride we’d never be able to experience again, and took the chance for a few photo ops along the way. Happily enough, the marquee on the wall had Fantasia listed as the feature film!

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How adorably 20s does my roomie look as Sorcerer Mickey? And my lil sis was really rocking that Ursula bound in my black vintage dress. After a few photos with fast passes in hand, we picked up our friend from LI (who was bounding Merida and happens to hate drop rides and coasters) and we made our way over to our favorite game ride, Toy Story Mania.

Due to poor planning, we had already hit about three hours by the time we were done with the ride, and my feet were in excruciating pain. Not only could I not go on pointe, but I could barely walk because of the pain in my toes and my ankles (how did I use to do this for hours??? I blame the concrete! And…that I haven’t been en pointe in about 8 years). We stopped for one last photo op…

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I tried to bite the bullet and prepared to go up en pointe so I could have at least ONE photo showing off…

…but failed miserably and ended up just going for pretty ballet arms instead.

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Since the lockers my change of shoes were stored in were on the other side of the theme park, after about 10 minutes of teeny-tiny baby steps of pain, I gave up and my roomie and sis went to grab the shoes for me. Taking the pointe shoes and all the toe tape off and slipping into cushioned flats was a blessed relief and I was happy to walk again.

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Next step (ha!) was to go make use of our Tower of Terror passes and ride our beloved ride one last time.

It was a bittersweet experience to say the least. Particularly with the sign already off of the building and all but one of the cast members already out of character.

Our friend caught us as we walked out, and we took a quick farewell photo before moving on to explore the park a bit more and then switching over to Disneyland.

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Halloween-time….finally!

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Definitely our happy place, and it certainly shows! So happy, in fact, that I finally took my outfit out for a much needed twirl!

We took these last few photos before rushing to find one of the more deserted restrooms and changing into our “costumes” for the Halloween Party. I opted for my Belle look that’s previously made it’s appearance on my blog in my week of closet Disneybounding as some felt it to be too costumey for a normal bound (and was too hot for daytime wear in Disney anyway). My roomie went as Prince Adam (as she’s not the princess type and we couldn’t afford to buy new clothing for the event anyway), the visiting friend went as Ariel, and my lil sis went as Snow White. After the most hectic Disneyland experience of my life (why did I commit to a hair change???), we emerged as our new characters.

After the heat and stress of changing, we stopped for another photo op to try to relax and cool down, and take advantage of the light before it disappeared.

Adam woo-ed me with a kiss on my hand.

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And Snow of course needed to visit her wishing well.

But meanwhile, Adam continued to work his magic and swept me up into a dance.

Ariel, being the restless girl she is, tried to book it back to the sea while we were all preoccupied. Can’t take her anywhere!

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So we pulled her back and tried to teach her how to properly pose for a portrait.

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My hands were itching for the book I’d left back at my locker!

Then the day dissolved into darkness and we opted out of taking photos to focus on our hectic night ahead. We rushed around doing all we could do in the short amount of time we had but ended up missing almost all of our favorite rides from poor planning (a hectic trip indeed – Disneyland without teacups? Space Mountain?? Indiana Jones??? unheard of!). The one notable ride was of course the Halloween-must, Haunted Mansion. Decked out just as wonderfully as I remembered it being years ago, the experience was hauntingly enchanting. And that new Sally animatronic was absolutely stunning! My biggest regret is not being able to go through more than once.

All in all it was a wonderful, though poorly planned, experience. The new parade of villains and seeing everyone dressed up definitely makes the cost worth it and we now plan on making Mickey’s Halloween Party a must next year. I’m already antsy to head back and wishing our trip had lasted longer than it did.

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So farewell for now from Belle, Walt, Mickey, and I!

Love,

Miss Lark Bahar

 

A Day in Lady K Loves

Although I’m a huge fan of brands like Pinup Girl Clothing and Tatyana, there will always be a special place in my heart for vintage reproduction companies that feature styles and silhouettes that lean towards a more era-accurate fit instead of the pin up styles that have become so popular nowadays. This is why brands like Vivien of Holloway and Freddies of Pinewood have always appealed to me. Although I have no problems with showing off a little cleavage and featuring loud patterns and colors, there’s something so beautiful about the curvy cut of a pair of 1950s styled peddle pushers and other casual wear that seems to be less popular in the current pin up scene. I immediately feel more authentically ’50s or ’60s when I can don a high-necked cashmere sweater and a pair of high-waisted jeans than I do when I throw on a low-cut dress with a big gathered skirt, and for me, this is a good thing.

When Lady K Loves contacted me suggesting a collaboration, I was over-the-moon jumping-out-of-my-seat excited. Their range of clothes fit perfectly into what I deem to be casual 40s-60s reproduction clothing (with an additional range of more modern skin tight, true high-waisted jeans sewn specifically for curvy gals). While choosing my wishlist was tough, I ended up with such a great range of items that I knew I had to spend a day showing them all off!

These are the four items I ended up with:

This past Saturday, as I had a full day with no solid plans, I decided to snatch up the opportunity and finally have my “Lady K Loves Day” with the help of my roomie photographer.

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The Lydia Patio Top and Darling Skirt in Turquoise are a lightweight wardrobe option perfect for lounging about during the only endurable time of day in the desert heat. I wore it for my morning coffee with Louisa May Alcott at my side. As everything but the waist of the skirt fits loosely given the styling of the two pieces (and even then, the 25″ waist fits my 24″-25″ measurement more perfectly than any other repro company I’ve encountered), it was perfectly comfortable curling up in one of our patio chairs with my book.

The flare of the sleeves is helpful with cutting back the heat as the large armholes aid the breathe-ability of the top, and the shirt, when untucked, is cut with tails in a way that the wearer can tie the waist if desired without it being too short when tucked in. My one qualm with these two pieces is that the ric-rac design on the blouse is incredibly scratchy as there’s no barrier between the skin and the coarse, metallic stitching. Fortunately, as the top isn’t tight fitting, this isn’t as much of a problem as it could be for someone with sensitive skin like me.

After starting the morning with some coffee and a good read, we decided to go spend some time by the pool, enjoying the slight drop in heat due to the overcast skies (yay monsoon season!). Since I try to avoid wearing my expensive vintage bathing suit, I decided to don my Emma Playsuit for some more relaxation time by the pool with drink in hand.

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This was the number that Lady K Loves originally asked me to feature and I admit I was hesitant. Given my long torso, large legs and hips, and small waist, proportionally, I usually can’t comfortably wear a one-piece unless it’s a custom number. To my complete and utter shock, it fit me more perfectly than ANY playsuit, swimsuit, or even short set I own. As I feel the fit is incredibly important for a number like this, I figured I would provide my measurements. I clock in at 36″-24/25″-38″ and my legs are about 23″ around. I unfortunately don’t have my torso measurement, but as you can see from the photos, the XS fits me, a 5’5″gal with short legs and a long torso with the above measurements, seamlessly.

The torso is the perfect length as it doesn’t result in the dreaded camel-toe or sag at the crotch, and the length and diameter of the legs are cut so that when standing, they follow my curves effortlessly without digging in uncomfortably when sitting. I do have to wear a strapless bra with this number as there’s no support sewn in in the bust, but I don’t really mind. Gives me room to throw in a bullet or cone bra!

My only qualm with this number is that they don’t have more prints available! I need MOAR. I know summer’s ending but……………………..gosh darnit, it’s perfect!

But anyway…after lounging around and being lazy for most of the day, we decided to head out and use one of our Groupons for a wine night. Since the Splendid Top has the longer sleeves with the classic wrap-top cut, I figured it would be a great staple that could be dressed up or down given the situation. I ended up opting for a simple, but elegant look for going out, and my roomie snapped a few images of me in the process of getting ready.

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I would say that this is undoubtedly the most elegant top I own. As it’s a wrap top, it opens up completely, and so sizing wasn’t something I was worried about in the least. The fabric is, again, completely breathable and lightweight – perfect for a desert dweller – and the sleeves are cut to be loose and comfortable. I’ve always adored wrap tops since they let me cinch my waist in as few tops are small enough to do, and this top does not disappoint. On occasion, I become worried that I might be pulling a wrap top too tight, but the fabric of Lady K Loves’ version feels sturdy enough to handle pulling me in about an inch or two extra.

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The most interesting trait of this top is the collar, which can be worn up or flattened out seamlessly. The photos from Saturday night show the collar flattened, but in my Instagram image below, you can see what it looks like when “popped.” I love the styling both ways, and figure being able to pop the collar will help keep my neck warm in colder weather.

I opted for pairing this top with various shades of soft pink and my brooch with the two dancers as it reminds me so much of the shrugs I used to don as a ballerina; what better way to pay homage to a time in my life I still dearly regret letting go?

All in all, Lady K Loves has a range of items that can fulfill any wardrobe desire from 1950s casual looks, to 1950s party looks. I’m so glad to feature Lady K Loves on my blog and am so relieved that I can finally start wearing these items! The wrap top and the playsuit are perfect for planning fall-themed looks around and I can’t wait. All of these items have added to my wardrobe so much while giving me comfortable wardrobe staples.

I’m personally DYING to add this set to my closet, and now consider Lady K Loves my staple reproduction brand despite being international.

If you’re a curvy gal like me and looking for a brand that will hug your shape beautifully, then look no further! This is a rare brand indeed. If you have a straighter figure, then I have no doubt that these items would look just as perfect on you – just take a look at their Instagram to show all the gorgeous gals modeling the clothes. Although their size range doesn’t extend into plus-size, hopefully this is a step they can take as their business grows.

If you’d like to keep tabs on this most-wonderful of shops, you can head to these sites:

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Instagram

Facebook

Love,

Miss Lark Bahar

My Week of Closet Disneybounding (08/08/16-08/12/16)

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With my latest plans to head to Disneyland cancelled due to the “big move,” I decided to finally take the plunge on recording a week of Disneybounding at home for my blog to bring a little bit of that magic into my daily routine. The bounds you’ll find featured this week are bounds that I would, for various reasons, not wear to Disneyland – whether it be because a certain clothing item is too tight to execute the bound at a theme park, or it’s a character whose outfit I wouldn’t normally choose to bound. I wanted to, for the first time, work purely from my closet without purchasing additional items to solidify any of the bounds – a surprisingly difficult, yet enjoyable task! I adore being able to look at what I have to try to come up with silhouettes and color combinations that would sufficiently and (to a degree) recognizably represent Disney characters. For those of you who don’t know, Disneybounding is the process of choosing clothing items from your closet or in your personal style that in some way or other represent specific Disney characters and themes, and it’s a great way to pull in some magic to your wardrobe if you’re feeling a little stuck.

So without further ado, I present to you My Week of Closet Disneybounding!

Love,

Miss Lark Bahar

Day 1: Ariel

While Ariel was my favorite princess as a child, I’ve always been partial to her human wardrobe rather than her mermaid look. I’m not a huge one for color blocking since I generally either choose to feature all one color, or some kind of print on top and bottom to break looks up, so I knew that mermaid Ariel would never be a Disneybound look I’d wear to Disneyland itself (unless I ended up moving to California and was able to go to Disney often enough to change this). Since Ariel’s still one of my favorite princesses, and I knew I had the colors required to bound as Ariel, I knew she’d be a perfect start to my week! The earrings – really the best addition to any Ariel bound – are actually from my very first bound which happened to be Kiss the Girl Ariel. The skirt was originally used for a Buzz Lightyear Disneybound in the parks but everyone kept guessing Ariel, so I figured….well, I know it works! I was going to wear a circle skirt but then realized that a pencil skirt would emulate her tail much better anyway. The large hat I ended up wearing to emulate Ariel’s hair was actually my roommate’s idea, so shout out to her!

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Oversized Red Hat: Buffalo Exchange
Fork Earrings: Thrifted
Lipstick: Besame Cosmetics’ Besame Red
Vintage Fish Brooch: Thrifted
Purple Marilyn Top: Le Bomb Shop
Green/Teal Pencil Skirt: Thrifted
Green Heels: Thrifted

Day 2: Genie

I knew this bound wouldn’t be the most recognizable one, so not a bound I would choose to wear to the parks unless going in a group, but I’m quite happy with the look anyway. Love that pop of red paired with the blues! If I wasn’t working purely from items already in my wardrobe, I would definitely have found a blue for the bottom lighter than the navy skirt I used, but then that would defeat the purpose of this week. Also, my roomie came to the rescue again by suggesting I take my photo with my Turkish carpet today to fit in with the whole look. This look was put together more for the colors than a silhouette.

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Single Gold Hoop Earring: Borrowed from roommate
Lipstick: Besame Cosmetics’ Cherry Red
Blue Peasant Top: Pinup Girl Clothing
Gold Rope Brooch: Thrifted
Bangles: Poshmark
Red Grommet Belt: Pinup Girl Clothing
1950s Blue Silk Skirt w/ Silver Triangles: Instagram shop FarFromHereVintage
Cosette Petticoat (x1): Malco Modes
Gold Flats: Poshmark

Day 3: Snow White

This is actually a Disneybound that I WOULD consider wearing to the parks…if my little sister hadn’t already worn the same yellow skirt for the same bound in Disneyland. It’s just too perfect! Also decided to whip out one of my warmer tops for this since I liked the idea of really playing up the 1950s look and what better way to do that than with a slash neck top? This is actually the first time I’ve tried to pin my hair up into a shorter bob, so that was a fun endeavor. Looked pretty cute! Though a bit too…well-coiffed for the way I’d want my short hair to look, probably, if I actually got it cut that way. I even donned purple eyeshadow for this bound!

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Red Hair Scarf: Thrifted
Lipstick: Besame Cosmetics’ Victory Red
Graduated Champagne Pearl Necklace: Vivien of Holloway
Gold & Red Apple Brooch: Thrifted
Navy Slashneck Top: Vivien of Holloway
Red Grommet Belt: Pinup Girl Clothing
1950s Yellow Skirt: Borrowed from sister
Gold & Navy Heels: Thrifted

Day 4: Mushu

This is another character I chose knowing I would probably never bound him in Disneyland since he’s not terribly recognizable being…well…mostly red. I was debating between wearing a felt skirt and peasant top combo and this velvet dress and finally opted for the latter feeling the texture of the material gave the same depth fire gives. I threw on a hair scarf and earrings to emulate the color in his horns, and voila! Mushu. Plus, I threw on the gold pin thinking maybe it looked sorta sword-ish?

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Purple Hair Scarf: Thrifted
Purple Earrings: Thrifted
Lipstick: Besame Cosmetics’ Merlot
Red Velvet Dress: From Etsy shop RetroRedRocket
Gold Pin: Thrifted
Mustard Scarf: Gifted
Seamed Fishnet Tights: Not sure
Red Heels: Thrifted

Day 5: Belle

Honestly, I have never been so excited for or happy with a Disneybound in my life. Belle, my main girl, has been a bound I’ve wanted to throw together for AGES, but never quite had the right pieces for. I recently purchased a beautiful blue and silver gown to wear for a fancier Belle bound, but for the casual look, I knew I wanted to use the Pinup Girl Clothing underskirt as an overskirt to emulate Belle’s apron, and I already had a proper white top and black flats to use, so it was only a matter of finding the blue gown to pull everything together. I found the dress months ago and was ECSTATIC when I did. Plus, how adorable is the handmade book brooch?? The only reason I didn’t save this bound for Disney itself is because the dress is MUCH too small in the bust for me to be able to wear to a theme park. Doesn’t really allow for much movement at all. But you can bet I’ll be using the rest of the look to bound Belle at the parks some time in the future 😉 Will just have to play around with the hair a bit more to get the bow to show properly…and acquire the right lipstick! Definitely would’ve gone with a dusty rose shade if I’d had it. And then hope that I’d actually be let in!

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Blue Hair Bow: Forever 21
Lipstick: Besame Cosmetics’ Besame Red
White Lauren Top: Pinup Girl Clothing
Handmade Book Brooch: Etsy shop RedThreadBindery
1950s Blue Dress: Etsy shop izorasflashback
White Canvas Underskirt:Pinup Girl Clothing
Nude Fishnet Tights w/ Black Seam: Not sure
Black Flats: Thrifted

Harry Potter & the Cursed Child Book Release with My New Femme de Bloom HP-Inspired Brooches

This year marks a wonderful one for Harry Potter fans as we find event after event appearing to warm our Hogwarts-loving hearts. First, all of us near the West Coast FINALLY got our own Wizarding World of Harry Potter in Universal Studios. This past weekend marked the first official release of a Harry Potter “book” in years and years. And before us lies the impending release of Fantastic Beasts featuring one of my biggest movie crushes, Eddie Redmayne. While 2016 has CERTAINLY proven to be a year where new ideas have been dashed in favor of bringing back old loves, I honestly can’t say that I mind Harry Potter making a come-back in pop culture. Though I can’t really say that the HP fanbase has ever died out, it’s nice to see it making headlines again.

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The anticipation for Harry Potter & the Cursed Child, the script to the new play once limited to its single production at the West End, has been almost painful, so as soon as bookstores began to announce good ol’ fashioned midnight book release celebrations, my best friend/roomie, lil sis and I immediately started planning.

We knew we had to dress up in some way, and I knew that my stand-by Bellatrix look I always leaned on due to my once-existent mass of black curls back when the original series was being released would be impossible now, so we opted to simply represent our houses: the other two as Hufflepuffs, and I as a Ravenclaw. My little cousin, whom we were planning to meet up with, would of course represent her Slytherin house.

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I unfortunately realized that, while my wardrobe is full of blue, most of it is a brighter blue that wouldn’t give a proper “Ravenclaw feel,” and none of my jewelry is bronze, so I opted to wear a black wiggle I’d been saving for the cooler months embellished with the odd blue, silver, and gold accessories to emulate the darker blues and bronze. My best friend suggested I try a blue snood, and I decided this would be the best way to show off the color, and topped it off with a silver hat of mine that doesn’t get nearly enough play. Although I have a great distaste for the way double victory rolls flatter my face from all but one angle, I didn’t want to make us any later by dabbling with new styles, so ended up settling and didn’t mind the end result.

 

My little sister borrowed my vintage yellow plaid skirt, and my roomie borrowed a yellow sash of mine to tie around her waist. I also allowed her to borrow my new Butterbeer brooch from the adorable Femme de Bloom while I wasn’t using it for the review (what better time and place to review HP-themed brooches, after all?), while I donned her Nimbus 2000 brooch.

Since we’d spent much of the day putting up everything that has to be hung in our new apartment, we ended up running a bit late – something I wouldn’t normally deem acceptable……..but I have to admit a small part of me had low expectations for the party itself given I was a Borders gal back in the day and we were stuck with going to Barnes & Noble. And these suspicions were confirmed by my cousin who arrived on time and said that people were pretty much just sitting around or playing board games. So when we were finally read to head off, I donned my cape, we each picked up our wands (aka the legs from an old chair), and flew off!

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3 Witches Trying to Decipher the Meaning of This “Muggle Wall”

When we arrived, we were glad that at least people had dressed up (though we saw no true-to-film cosplay level characters which had riddled midnight releases at our Borders back in the day), and each section was set up as one of the houses with individual activities with the Starbucks reigning as the Great Hall. The activities generally ran along the lines of party games, so we opted out of participating and ended up just wandering around and enjoying the bookstore and its little Harry Potter themed sections until the book release, holding a duel here and there to practice our magic, of course.

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Of course, then it turned out all of our dueling had ended up spelling trouble……

…not that you could tell by our sweet faces! 😘

One of the main reasons we focused on taking photos was because of my desire to use the opportunity to take pictures for my Femme de Bloom review. If you ever have the desire to have a photoshoot in Barnes & Noble…..well…….just don’t. My camera couldn’t handle the intensity of the lights, so we ended up having to switch to my roomie’s phone halfway through. Arguably the best duel of the night (since I obviously won against my little sister), was sadly recorded on the camera and resulted in a need for VERY heavy filtration.

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Ah well…at least it gave us something to do as we anxiously awaited the actual release of the book! Sadly, since my roomie and I are sharing a book at this point and are in different houses currently due to A/C problems at our new place, I have only read the first act. By tomorrow, that should no longer be a problem. My thoughts are manifold on what I’ve read though, so I’m in for any discussions! I will admit that it is difficult to ignore my desire for the book to be a novel by JK instead of the script for a play by Jack Thorne based mysteriously on a short story by JK that this novel should have been. It simply hasn’t read like a Harry Potter book so far, but I’m glad to have anything, and I’m definitely left bemoaning the fact that I’m stuck halfway through and can’t continue yet, and that I can’t see the play live yet!

But aside from my ramblings about the actual book…I’ll continue with my actual review of my brooches!

The first, and my favorite of the two – because how much I adore the importance of the Nimbus 2000 to Harry, and how magical its name feels (much better than Firebolt! Sounds like a Mac OS name…) – is a handcrafted brooch made from a bronze plated material. When I received it in the mail, it felt like the sturdier of the two brooches.

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As with all metallic brooches, it’s hard to see the detail in photos as it gets washed out, but as you can see in my close-up of the pin, the details are true to the online image. This problem with details getting lost is naturally not a problem with the second brooch. This one features a printed image instead of the carved details, so doesn’t have the same problem with shininess, and definitely reads easier than the Nimbus 2000 one.

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Sadly, the little clip on the back that wraps around to close the circle when clasping the pin broke off almost immediately as it wasn’t very strong; however, it’s easy enough to simply place the needle into the rounded circle as it’s a light enough brooch that I don’t have any worries of it coming undone.

Melanie, the adorable creator of Femme de Bloom, has an adorably kitschy range of accessories on her Etsy and what she offers is constantly changing, so I would definitely keep an eye out for her on social media:

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Instagram

Facebook

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Did you attend a book release? Have you finished the book yet? Talk to me in the comments! Let’s rave about Harry Potter!

Love,

Miss Lark Bahar

Drag Races at Arizona Hops & Vines (04/23/16)

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While struggling with constant failures of technology (cars breaking down, laptops breaking down…) as I’m in the throes of final papers, one of the few things keeping me sane was/is an impending week of drag shows. Today’s show was hosted by the winery and brewery Hops & Vines located in Sonoita, Arizona – about an hour’s drive from Tucson.

Having never travelled in this direction in Arizona before, I was taken aback by the quickly changing scenery as hills rolled before me, grass started to sprout and…lo and behold…trees appeared before my very eyes! The scenery felt so different from any area I’d been in in Arizona before, that I mentioned it to someone afterwards only to find out that Oklahoma! was actually filmed in the area (though the cornstalks had to be imported)! As one of my favorite musicals, this was pretty exciting to find out, and I now have plans to pop the film in my DVD player and check it out.

Once we walked up the hilly, dirt-covered, gravel path up to Hops & Vines after parking, we all noticed two things: one, the wind was INSANELY strong and the hats we brought were not going to be used much, and two, we probably shouldn’t have worn heels.

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Taco hat syndrome – no good!

The event had a surprisingly good turnout as a $10-$20 ticket came with one food ticket for the present food trucks, six drink tasting tickets, and one souvenir wine glass, but sadly, the majority of attendees were not in drag. There were hardly more than a handful of drag queens who’d gone full out – with the occasional fellow adorning a dress – so my friends and I made our way inside the actual winery to make use of our free drink tasting tickets. We weren’t smitten with anything we tried except for the first white wine, appropriately titled “The Drag Queen.”

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After making use of our last drink tickets, we made our way outside to watch the drag race. While the drag race itself was a sprint that hardly lasted a minute before it was over, I was incredibly impressed by the two gals actually booking it to the “finish line” in heels (the winner wore sneakers – cheater!), as well as the pure fabulousness of the girls who walked slowly behind, milking every step and moment. Sadly, my favorite gal of the day was a sprinter in heels, so I hardly had the chance to try to keep my hair out of my face in the extreme wind enough to see her run by, much less attempt taking a photo!

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After the race itself, we went back inside to avoid the high winds for awhile before deciding to head back to the car to drop off our bottle of The Drag Queen and take a few photos for my outfit of the day. Along the way, we saw a group of queens taking photos, so quickly ran over to take the opportunity. The gal on the right was my favorite of the lot since her blue outfit, make-up, hair, and generally everything was so on point, and she also happened to stick around the longest – the only queen who stayed till the end of the event. They were all incredibly sweet and friendly and seemed to want to take a photo with me as much as I wanted to take a photo with them. The cost of being the only other person who looked “dressed up,” I suppose 😉

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After the quick photo op with the drag queens, we moved on to have one of our own in the parking lot. The wind – and our headlong dive into cliche desert photos – led to some great images (of all sorts).

All in all, it was an amazing event. While I think it could draw a wider array of spectators and participants if the “drag” portion of the show lasted more than a minute (lip-sync battles, anyone???), the cost was more than worth it considering the wine tasting, free food ticket, photo ops, race, and the gorgeous surroundings – with the wind keeping us cooler than us Tucsonans are accustomed to. The inside of the brewery was a mild temperature with plenty of comfortable seating the majority of the time and a classic Southern Arizona feel. They’re supposedly having another similar event while showing “Casablanca,” and I fully plan to attend!

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