Author Archives: Nicki

Winter Hobby: Knitting

Nicki Written by Nicki

knitting ad

 

As most of you know, I just moved to New York City about a month ago. As all of you know, it’s been FREEZING here, too freezing for this life-long Florida Girl to handle in more than very small doses. I also am yet to find a full-time job, so that means lots of time spent in my tiny sub-let apartment deeeep in Brooklyn without any musical instruments or art supplies (they’re all in storage). What’s a girl to do? In order to not go cabin fever crazy The Shining style, I’ve decided to take up a new hobby…knitting! Yep, I’m gonna be that funky lady knitting socks on the subway, so look out for that.

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you are what you knit

I can’t promise beautiful results, since I’ve never done this before and I barely learned to crochet when I was about 7. I think I’ll look for some vintage knitting patterns to try! Wish me luck guys.

knit for soldiers

Scooter Culture

Nicki Written by Nicki

I absolutely love scooters. My husband and I have an aqua Vespa that we just adore! I plan on finding a vintage one for myself, as I can’t drive ours because it’s too tall! My stumpy legs don’t reach the ground. Scooters have been wildly popular in Europe for decades, but only recently caught on in the states.

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Since the early 1960s, scooters have been closely associated with the mod subculture of England. It was one of the ways they differentiated themselves from the “rockers”, who drove bigger, louder motorcycles. This was immortalized in the 1979 film Quadrophenia.  Mods would embellish their bikes with tons of lights and mirrors. Basically, the more junk that was hanging from your scooter, the cooler you would be! Personally, I prefer a sleek look. However you like to decorate them, scooters are a gas! I can’t wait for the weather to warm up so I can take to the streets again.

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New Year’s Resolutions: Nicki

Nicki Written by Nicki

Today I’d like to share with you a few things I’m excited about for 2014. Last year was a really big year for me, so I’m looking forward to seeing what I’m in store for in the coming year!

parlezvousfrancais

Brushing up on my French

I am determined to become fluent in at least one other language, and since I love France and already know some French, I’m starting there. I’ve found a great little place here called CouCou Brooklyn that  holds French classes and private lessons. They even do yoga classes in French! Je suis toujours un étudiant français.

mad men secretary

Finding a *Good* Job

In case you haven’t heard, New York is expensive. I will be pounding the pavement, as they say, in search of a job that pays the bills and doesn’t make me want to pull my own hair out. That’s the American dream, isn’t it?

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Devoting More Time to Art

This one is always on my list. My artistic endeavors always seem to fall by the wayside in order for pesky “responsibilities” to prevail. It’s a new year, a new life in a new city, and my wonderful husband gave me some new supplies for Christmas. Time to bust out those paint brushes!

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Take Advantage of my New Home

I’ve been longing to live in New York City since I was 13 years old and came here on a middle school field trip. It’s the center of the universe, where the magic happens, what dreams are made of! It’s also home to lots of subway rats and now “Winter Storm Hurcules” (really?!), but I won’t let that stop me from enjoying all the amazing things the big apple has to offer. That means shows, concerts, picnics in central park, museums, food, and getting lost on the subway. Hey, sometimes getting “lost” helps you to find something awesome you would have never discovered otherwise!

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Seven Minutes in Heaven!

Of course, this blog / shop is a big priority this year! I’m hoping that Jem and I can make something really great out of this collaboration. We hope to create some really interesting,  informative, and fun blog posts in the coming year and add some more fabulous vintage pieces to the shop for you guys to add to your wardrobes!

I’m so excited to see what 2014 will bring my way!

Classic Coffee: The Bialetti Moka Express

Nicki Written by Nicki

omino_bialetti_mondocarosello

I had planned on doing a post about my makeup routine today, but as I was shooting the photos I discovered that I looked like a scary monster in just about all of them! So, that one will have to wait for another day. Instead, I’m gonna talk a little about one of my favorite things: COFFEE! Specifically, my favorite coffee maker, the classic Bialetti Moka Express.

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The Bialetti stove-top coffee maker was designed in the 1930′s and has been a mainstay of kitchens around the world since the 1950′s. Nearly every Italian kitchen has one, (I’ve seen Giada De Laurentiis use one several times on her show). If you enjoy a rich, smooth flavor, it really does produce the perfect cup of coffee. 
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I know we’re in the age of the Keurig (I’m guilty of having owned one myself), but once you taste a cup from the Bialetti, you’ll never want to go back to the pre-packaged one cup method again. It’s really quite simple to use. Just unscrew the pot in the middle, take out the aluminum filter, fill the bottom with water, fill the filter with coffee, put it back together and plop it down on the stove. In just a few minutes, you’ll have a bubbling hot pot of rich delicious coffee! (Photo ℅ Penelope’s Oasis)

The Bialetti has enjoyed a surge in popularity in recent years, so of course there are some copy-cats. Pantone has jumped on the bandwagon with their line of brightly colored pots. It’s a very simple design, so i’m sure it’s pretty similar to the classic Bialetti brand. I love the colors!  

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My husband and I just got our very own Bialetti for Christmas! We’ve been using the one provided in the apartment we’re subletting and fell in love with it. Now we’ve got our very own to make thousands of cups of perfect coffee with for years to come!

You can purchase your very own Bialetti here and the Pantone version here

 

Etsy Round-up: Vintage Christmas Decor

Nicki Written by Nicki

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With just a few days left until Christmas, I’m sure most of you already have your home decorated with lots of festive fun decor. When I imagine decorations for this time of year, I always think of my Grandmother’s house when I was growing up. I spent every Christmas Eve and Christmas morning there for years and years, and she had the same decorations every year.

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My Grandmother’s decor was likely all purchased around 1955, because it was just like all of this lovely atomic Christmas gear I’ve featured today! She had it all- the colorful glass ornaments, elf figurines with little doll faces, and that ceramic tree! 

atomic tree top

She had a red tree topper exactly like this one.

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I definitely remember lots of reindeer decor. It seems the reindeer have been put on the back-burner in more recent years, but in the atomic age they were everywhere!

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I just love vintage Christmas decor! It’s so cheerful and sweet, and it reminds me of my childhood. Most of my Grandmother’s beautiful collection has disappeared or broken, but I plan on creating my own collection with the help of Etsy and vintage shops.

 

Nicki’s Top 5 Christmas Movies & T.V. Specials

Nicki Written by Nicki

christmas tv guide
It’s Christmas time, and in my opinion, the best time for movies and television! Like it or not, Christmas-themed programming just has a certain longevity that makes it enjoyable and totally charming for young and old, no matter how many times you’ve watched it. I’ve comprised a list of some of my favorite Christmas viewing goodies, many of which must be watched every single year or it just doesn’t feel like Christmas to me.

1. A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965).  There’s just no denying that this masterpiece of animation is most  people’s favorite. It’s a classic story of the kid that no one ever seems to like who finds someone less fortunate (a sad tree) and gives them a chance at fulfilling their destiny. The voices, the songs, the dancing you just can’t go wrong with this heartwarming gem.

2. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (1964).  This clay-mation special was my favorite when I was little. I had a Rudolph toy whose nose lit up as it walked across the room, and I would always play with it while watching. The story is quite a lesson in tolerance, especially for parents. Donner was such a jerk to his son! That is, until he realized that Rudolph’s freak “problem” actually made him very important and essential in saving Christmas. The Abominable Snow Monster is my favorite character. All he needed was a dentist-in-training to fix his toothache and he turned into a giant googly-eyed teddy bear!

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Christmas Vacation 3_JWO

3. National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989). Hands down the funniest Christmas movie of all time, Chevy Chase’s wacky holiday romp will always have a special place in my heart. My dad was, undeniably, the Clark Griswold of the south. He did it all- covered his house in millions of tiny lightbulbs, stapled himself to the side of the house, fell from the roof (and broke his pinky toe), never yielding in his insatiable need to celebrate Christmas in the BIGGEST way possible. One of my favorite things about this movie is that it shows just how incredibly wrong everything can go during the holidays, and that it’s ok to be ok with it. Sometimes the turkey just comes out mummified.

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4. Love Actually (2003). Every boyfriend’s least favorite, this mash-up of every English actor you can think of gets me every time! Hugh Grant’s rendition of “Good King Wenceslas”, Bill Nighy’s horrendous christmas cover of “Love is all Around”, Rowan Atkinson painfully gift-wrapping a gift that Alan Rickman should not be buying- it’s a laugh riot! It’s also incredibly heart-warming- the kid gets the girl, a man professes his love for his best friend’s wife without any expectations, and the widower finds his Claudia Schiffer. I also like that not every storyline has a happy ending. Laura Linney gives up on the dreamy office guy for a greater responsibility, and Emma Watson basically just stops her husband from doing anything to completely ruin their marriage, but not without some serious damage. I could do without Santana’s “Smooth” segueing Colin into Wisconsin, but the Beach Boys’ “God Only Knows” makes up for it in the end. Not to mention this movie solidifies Mariah Carey’s “All I want for Christmas is you” into eternal holiday life, as if it needed any help.

5. Saturday Night Live (1975-present). Anything SNL has ever done having to do with Christmas is included here. Since the beginning, the jokesters down at Studio 8H have been lampooning the holiday season in style. No matter what anyone thinks about any given cast over the years, there’s no denying that when it comes to Christmas, SNL always delivers. Adam Sandler’s “Hanukkah Song” and Jimmy Fallon’s “I Wish it was Christmas Today” have become holiday classics, and Alec Baldwin will forever be know for his “Schweddy Balls”.

These are just a few of my favorite things to watch at Christmas. What are some of your faves? I’d love to hear about them!

 

 

Moving Day!

Nicki Written by Nicki

moving truck

 

finally, Finally, FINALLY! Today, my husband and I are packing up everything we own and hauling off to the big apple! We’ve been waiting AGES for this and we couldn’t be more excited! Now, both creative forces behind SMiH will be based in NYC, the fashion capitol of the world. I’m very excited to join Jem in the big city so we can make this little vintage business in to something amazing! We’ve already got a photo-shoot in the works for this weekend, so stay tuned!

Vintage Style Inspiration: Mad Men

Nicki Written by Nicki

mad-men-season-6
mad men megan and don
Ok, I know I am wayyy late on this, but I just binge-watched Mad Men seasons 1-5 on Netflix, and it is AMAZING! After years of not having cable television or membership to streaming services, I have finally jumped on the Mad Men bandwagon. My biggest surprise? There has been a television show seemingly created just for me and I have been missing it! For like, 6 years!   As much as I am totally wrapped up in the story of the 60s advertising giants and their exploits, I just can’t get over the overall design of this show. The costumers, set designers, and writers have done such an amazing job of recreating the look, feel, and attitude of the 1960s. They even make a point to show all the women smoking while pregnant like it’s no biggie. You can actually witness the (quite accurate) evolution of style from season to season.

Since I was a little child, I have been obsessed with all things 60s. I watched nothing but Nick-at-Nite growing up (when it actually ran shows from the 50s and 60s, not the late 90s). I always wanted to emulate the style and sophistication I saw on the screen. I ferociously teased my hair to get that bump on the crown of my head, wondering why it would constantly fall flat. I later realized that not only was my hair quite fine, but no amount of hairspray and teasing could do what a good old fashioned hair-piece could do. My Grandmother’s house was almost completely decorated with mid-century furniture and decor, right down to the Christmas decorations! Watching Mad Men not only feeds my fashion and drama desires, it makes me feel like a kid again (even though I wasn’t born until the early 80s).

Honestly, my favorite part of the show is the set design. I want Don & Megan Draper’s super mod Manhattan apartment! Even the office was upgraded when they switched agencies. They went from slightly subdued late 50′s straight lines and muted colors to super pop colors and Eames chairs.

The cars!

The nightgowns!

Betty’s insufferable distaste in children!

Joan!

I just can’t get enough of these effortlessly stylish, endlessly troubled characters and all of their 60s shenanigans. I know I’m not alone!