Spotlight Saturday: Review of Tatyana’s Havana Top and Annette Skirt

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As an Arizonan of 15 or so years, the burning heat of the desert causes a familiar struggle. My eczema flares up, and even such simple tasks as walking from my apartment to my car results in pain. Finding positives in my city can prove to be challenging, but I do have to admit that I’ve developed a type of grudging kinship with the atmosphere.

While other places might still be happy in their springtime temperatures (like in San Diego where I just managed to get the worst sunburn of my life in 60°)…

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…sometimes it takes a little bit of desert fashion to make your 9 months of summer seem acceptable. So today, up for review, is a gloriously summer friendly outfit from Tatyana, a reproduction clothing store I’ve yet to feature on my blog.

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The Havana Top and Annette Skirt from the shop are a classic retro pairing that’s a great start for anyone looking to start expanding their Western-wear closet.

The top itself is made from a swimsuit-like material that breathes and expands with the body, making sizing quite versatile, and eliminating any sweat stain problems that the heat could cause. As a lover of Le Bomb Shop’s Marilyn Tops, which have a similar design, I figured a comparison would be helpful.

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When comparing the Havana Top and Marilyn Top (pictured in purple right above) in photos, a few differences are obvious: the Marilyn is cut lower on the sides and the middle, and the Havana ties at the neck while the Marilyn ties around the waist. In person, a few more differences are apparent: the Havana is made of a much thicker spandex-y material, and features gathering at the sides on the waist.

These differences mean a few things in practice: the Marilyn is MUCH more revealing, but it’s also more curve-hugging. I never fear I’ll fall out of my Marilyn tops, but the Havana lays less like a second skin since it’s made of a thicker material, and so I had keep an eye on my bust to make sure I was staying fully covered. However, the flip side of the coin is that if you’re self-conscious of your nipples showing, the Havana will help smooth things out the way that Marilyn will not, and the fabric really does cover more surface area when in place.

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When it comes to the gathering at the side, my waist size hasn’t changed much since I wore the purple Marilyn in the image above, but it looks slimmer simply because there’s nothing bunching up and adding weight to my waist. And, the ties at the neck mean you really could have any length of torso and bust size with the Havana as long as your under-bust falls within a few inches of the measurements listed on Tatyana’s site. You also have the ability to choose how to tie the neck which adds versatility to the table that the Marilyn doesn’t have. I do wish that the ties weren’t made of the same thick material as the rest of the top because it bunched up at my neck so much, but I’ll probably just wear my hair up when wearing the Havana in the future so it doesn’t tangle everything up so much.

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The Annette Skirt, obviously the star of the show, is a 24″ circle skirt in a bright, olive-y chartreuse decorated with black, desert-themed line work along the bottom. It has plenty of fabric to fit a petticoat underneath (a requirement for most skirts in my book), but is incredibly lightweight. Again, a great option for hot weather. Although I do generally prefer my skirts a wee bit longer to properly fit my Malco Modes Cosette petticoats beneath, I don’t mind it in this case, and would’ve paired a black petticoat with it if I had one. Fit-wise, Tatyana’s smallest waist size is only a 26″ (while I’m a 24″,) so I definitely had to belt this guy, but I happened to have a belt that matched perfectly! Obviously meant to be.

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All in all, the pairing of the Havana Top and the Annette Skirt is perfect for summer time, whether you live in the desert or not. Heat-friendly styles are few and far between when it comes to true vintage, so I always turn my gaze to reproduction vintage instead when it gets too hot to bare. The Havana with its versatility and the Annette with its thematic novelty print are a perfect addition to the wardrobe of this Arizona gal.

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To purchase either of these items, you can head to the links below:

Havana Top: $56

Annette Skirt: $115

Love,

Miss Lark Bahar

 

 

 

 

Spotlight Saturday: Revisiting The Ambrosia Bowl

Upon quick review of my blog, I was genuinely astonished to find that it’s been so insanely long since I brought you guys a review of anything Disney related! With my impending one day trip to Disneyland and Phoenix Comicon to meet Dick Van Dyke next week, my life has been a flurry of planning bounds and outfits to wear. When my favorite Disney brooch maker, The Ambrosia Bowl (whom I reviewed here about a year ago), released two new designs featuring Smee and Rafiki, I knew I had to add them to my collection, and bring her shop back into the light.

Since acquiring her fearless Jasmine brooch for that first review, I’ve added her Ariel, Mulan, and Belle brooches to my collection; and now, Rafiki, Smee, and Madam Mim (the brooch that first led me to her shop) join their ranks. Erin’s unique character and expression choices continuously astound me, and the execution of her little wooden designs is impeccable in every single brooch I receive. I’m so impressed, in fact, that I am reaching the point where her designs might need their own special brooch board! Since I plan on adding her Gaston and her Ursula brooches as well, and goodness knows I fall in love with each new design she reveals, it might be time to get out the foam board!

Since Rafiki, Smee, and Madam Mim each have such distinct color schemes, I put together individual outfits to show each one off properly.

Madam Mim, the zany witch from “The Sword in the Stone,” gave me the chance to pull out my vintage skirt/capri set and a pink Marilyn top to play homage to her wardrobe and the feel of her character:

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Madam Mim is the first brooch from Erin in my collection that doesn’t feature a painted border, and up close, the wood definitely looked a bit burnt. I had thought this was a fluke since she kindly decided to send me this gal when she discovered her at the bottom of a drawer (they’re currently only up for pre-order as she sold out), but upon closer inspection of other designs without the painted border, this is just the way they look. Luckily, it’s something that’s not noticeable except upon close inspection.

Mr. Smee, one of her two newest designs, features the lovable, familiar character dancing with glee. Since the border color she chose reminds me so much of water and rain, I decided to pair him with a dress in a print with a similar feel:

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I was amused to realize that Mr. Smee’s belly button doesn’t show! I’d thought this a fluke in the design as well until I googled it and realized his pants actually cover his belly button. Who knew? Learning new things every day.

Rafiki, the second of her two new designs, is perhaps my favorite of this batch. There always seems to be a lack of Lion King merchandise despite how incredibly popular it is, and Rafiki feels like the perfect subject for an Ambrosia Bowl design. With his coloring, he also matches a large quantity of my wardrobe that often gets overlooked by Disney brooches, and wearing him to work reminds me to take a deep breath in times of trial:

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If you’re in the market for unique Disney designs, then my first suggestion is hands down Erin’s work. Her painted brooches are identical to the original artwork in the films (a huge bonus), and I love seeing characters caught in moments that feature more than the generic pleasant smile.

If you would like to follow The Ambrosia Bowl in her endeavors (as I would highly suggest given her consistently wonderful releases), you can head to these social medias:

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Instagram