Wednesday, 18 August 2010

It's Vintage, Dahling

We went, oh yes of course we did, how could we miss a whole festival devoted to our beloved vintage? So sister safely packed off back up North after a lovely nattery week, off we went with our vintage bits 'n' bobs, off to Chichester, well precisely to Goodwood. Vintage at Goodwood, that is. Coming along for the photographic ride (it's long, I warn you)?

Here we are on Saturday morning, joining the throng of folks headed for this first festival devoted to 50 years of vintage cool. I rather like the signage, I must say.

Over the red carpet we all tripped, after a short walk through a little wooded clearing. There had been rain the day before and there were a few squelchy bits underfoot to miss. This bevvy of bathing belles was the first thing we saw; shame about the sad, sexist old bloke that was with them!

There were lots and lots of photographers here, snapping people as they walked through, in particular, the people who dressed up for the event which was heavily encouraged in the advertising. What to do next? It's a very large site with a mind boggling array of things to do...

Straight ahead was the much talked about "vintage high street" with its pop-up shops. We went straight to the beauty parlour which was offering (at a cost) makeovers and hair styling but all the appointments were already completely booked for the day. Ah well.

Oxfam's shop looked pretty jazzy from the outside. Mr HH reliably informs me that everything they were selling was donated (given charity shops seem to be full of new rubbish these days) and I have read that they took thousands of pounds within hours of opening. I didn't actually go inside, which now seems incredible, but there was simply too much to do in two days.

Anyone for tea? The idea behind V at G is that it is a pretty posh festival, people dressing up in their glamorous (vintage) best, wining and dining and who would have thought it, there were even flushing loos!

Ah, I didn't go in this shop either.

Only kiddding, 'course I did!

The pop-up shops were fab, it's amazing everything looked so professional and yet it was all just for a few temporary days. Cath K was very busy indeed and I thought the shop looked great. A few items had been created specifically for sale at the festival including woven badges and items made from discontinued fabrics (book bags, and tea towels which came in a quirky can!)

There was even a Cath K ice cream counter. It was all beautifully displayed, there was a gorgeous painted dresser behind groaning with china and goodies and all the paper ice cream tubs and cone wrappers were decorated with pretty Provence Rose print.

Further along the high street there was also a pop-up John Lewis haberdashery store. We came here very late in the day so it was relatively quiet. There were areas set up for crafting workshops, you can see here that Rowan had covered the tables in a patchwork of pretty fabrics and made those whacky lampshades.

There was also a very cosy corner devoted to yarn.

I wasn't particularly impressed with the things for sale but the team had done a stunning job of styling the place.

Want to learn some new skills? Best to head to the vintage school...

In here, the company Clothkits was running workshops.

This Kenwood pop-up shop shows you the scale of the high street with its super scale buildings. My mum still has a Kenwood mixer just like this!

Inside, there were cookery demonstrations from qualified chefs in this very cute retro kitchen.

We rested a while in the Festival of Britain pub complete with its retro jukebox and vintage fittings. Somehow, by Saturday lunchtime they had already run out of draught ale though?

The festival was in a beautiful setting, surrounded by rolling country fields, there was even a windmill at the top of the hill to gaze at whilst enjoying your ice cream from this rather marvellous van.

Funnily enough, you could enjoy the same view from the champagne enclosure!

There were a lot of vintage vehicles at the festival which pleased the Munchkin no end. Mr HH rather took a shine to this beauty. Move over 007!

...but I think this was more within the budget...

...whilst the Munchy one was going ga-ga over the vintage caravans. He managed to sweet talk the owners wherever he went and they usually ended up asking him to pose for photos!

Aside from wandering around the many lovely vehicles, there was a traditional funfair to enjoy.

Disappointingly but perhaps predictably, all the rides were at extra cost and were not cheap. The Muchkin went on the helter skelter which is his favourite, but £2 for one go was a far cry from 3 goes for a £1 on the Isle of Wight recently!

A seasidey area had been created complete with sand which many families were enjoying...

Music, oh yes, everywhere you went there was music. Not all of it was to our taste but we enjoyed the rock 'n' roll lounge, "Let it Rock"! This band was fantastic.

So much so that quite a few folks were strutting their stuff, even at midday.

Come evening time, this however, was much more the HenHouse scene.

Here the theme was the 1940s and '50s so we were pretty much in our element watching all the talented dancers whilst scoffing a pretty good dinner (once we'd queued for an absolute age to get in - not good).

The highlight for some appeared to be the nightly burlesque show but as it took place at about 8pm it was not particularly risque.

I was pretty disappointed to be honest and preferred the band!

This was the Johnny Miller Band and they were superb. There's nothing quite like hearing all those fabby old songs played by a proper full live band.

Next day, there was still so much to see and after a rather late night, it was a tad daunting! The main building wall you can see in the photo below was home to an ever-expanding collage of photos of nattily dressed festival goers who were being snapped as they walked in.

Ah, there we are!

Time for yet more retail therapy for behind each side of the vintage high street was the vintage marketplace...

Here there were second hand and new vintage-style goodies from all the various eras. The first section we encountered looked pretty much like a jumble sale but I guess if you were into newer vintage maybe it was just the ticket.

There were also areas for yet more crafting:

The BBC Homes and Antiques magazine stand looked great. It was beautifully decorated with atomic era fabrics and furniture and the two ladies in attendance looked similarly stylish.

In the end we did find many stalls which were to our taste...

...and even found old friends! Who did we bump into but the first lady of vintage fabrics, Donna.

Refreshment stands were dotted around the site, this one selling vintage cakes being more my cup of tea (ha dee ha)!

This one was also styled as a vintage tearoom. Not sure why everyone there looks so miserable?!

Children getting bored? Well ours didn't but there was a rather jolly looking Butlin's tent to entertain them if they were.

I was content to rest my poor little aching feet and ponder all things vintage. Now where's my cocktail?

...and according to the Munchkin, this little mention makes us famous at last ! (Thanks ladies-Annie, Jill and Donna- for the tip offs.)


  1. Everytime I read your blog, I feel like I have taken a trip over the pond! Love how cool you are and better yet, that you share it! Thanks for the experience!

  2. Wow! I was warned!... and I am just astounded at such an amazing event. Very stylish and vintage. Wish we had someting like that here!

  3. Oh Hen, this looks like such fun. Bravo to you and M for the Vogue pic.

    I just cannot imagine how much work went into preparing for this festival. Was this its debut?

    Best wishes.

  4. What a fabulous looking event! I would have loved to be there.

  5. What a fabulous event! It is always nice to be surrounded by people who share our passions (especially when we get to dress up)!

  6. Loved all the photos Hen - looks like great fun!


  7. Hen, thank you so much! A brilliant "tour" of what looked to be a fab weekend. Next year I will be there! Lizzie x

  8. Looked absolutely fantastic. I listened to the comentary on the radio, it sounded great,now I've seen the pics too!
    Julie xxxxxx

  9. Wow, that looked completely awesome! Thankyou so much for sharing the time you had there with us! xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  10. Love the photos! And you and Munchkin on the Vogue website look great!!
    Tamzin X

  11. It looks amazing, I would have loved to have gone, thank you so much for sharing your photos with us. You all look great it must be such fun dressing up. It looks as though the rain held off for you which was good. Hopefully it will be on again next year and I might get to go . Congrats on your appearance in the Vogue blog.
    Ann x

  12. Great write-up, looks like you had a really fab day.
    Bit diasppointed as we were s'posed to go but were then unable, but will def be at Goodwood Revival as normal- do you go to that?

  13. oh my !!!! not a word I normally use, but gosh that looks "AWESOME"

  14. You've taken some absolutely wonderful photos! It looks soo amazing! I wish to high heaven I had gone now! Do you know, is it just a one off? xox

  15. Wow! This looks like an amazing event. Great photo's

  16. Fantastic post, I've been dying to hear how it all went, so jealous! You look stunning xx

  17. Oh wow! What an event! How marvellous! Makes you realise just how big vintage has grown recently! I can't believe I missed this! It looks so wicked! You were very lucky to be informed and to go! xxx

  18. You all look so fab in the pics! That would have been a perfect day out for us..Mr Boo in the beer tent,while I get to peruse all those wonderful stalls!

    Bellaboo :o)

  19. oooh Hen! how did go! Nothing at all like I imagined though..sounds a bit expensive but still looks fun, I'd have loved a peek at all those stalls..and get you in Vogue,oohh er!
    You would have loved what we used to get up to 20 years ago in Hemsby..but that was the 'bad-girl B-movie vintage' version..this all looks a bit more refined!

  20. Oh it looks like a fantastic event, something I would love to go to. And you all looked so stylish. Thank you for giving us the tour and the low down, and congratulations to getting into Vogue, of course you are famous now!

    Bertie x

  21. Wasn't it wonderful? Your photos are fab. I took so few! I can't wait for next year :-)

  22. Such beautiful photos! I want to know how the flavors of ice cream were arranged in the Kath cooler because I bet they went together beautifully! I'm guessing it was strawberry next to pistachio next to vanilla :)

  23. WOW! What a fab day you all had and even getting your photo in Vogue! The event looked amazing and makes me wish that I went there too - I love the vintage kitchen photo and Munchkin looks as wizard as ever! Thanks so much for sharing your photos :-)

  24. Thankyou for sharing the two days with us, you both look amazing in your costumes, love the fox fur stole and munchkin looked right at home in the caravan.
    The reviews I read were not that great but you have blown that out of the water with your descriptions and photos. Now just need to persuade the other half it is a must go to next year.

  25. I wondered if you had gone to the festival. It looks absolutely fab and so did the three of you.
    Did you Glamp? or stay in something more homely?
    And...not many can say they have been featured in Vogue!!

  26. Vogue...Dahhhhhhling.....Of course you and the Munchy one are now famous! You all looked FAB Hen, what a great few days, I'd have loved to have gone. Thanks so much for all the effort you make taking all the pictures, and the time it must take you to upload them all so that we can all feel like we're there with you. I always love it when I see you've updated your blog as it's always full of such wonderful things,
    Take care,
    Jane. xx

  27. Hi Hen, I meant to also add how fab you all looked! xx

  28. Hi hen, What a fab weekend, I would have loved to go. And Vogue stop you'll be on the cover! Just saw a peek of a vintage pram on the photo of the "beach" boys had a pram like that, I still have it, from the 1960s! My friends thought I was mad! Hope you are all well, Love, kathyx PS. Tickets for November again?

  29. Looks fab! I really wished I could have made it!

  30. Wow, you three are always off doing something fabulous! Thanks for sharing! :)

    (I love that 'yarn lounge' photo. I need to add a new room to my home so I can have one of those! :D )

  31. I need to go to this next year..if they have one? You, Mr HH and the munchkin looked wonderful and the pictures have given me a real sense of the excitement. Thanks for the marketing while you were there too!!

  32. What a fantastic account of the event Hen..
    I would love to have gone but you brought it to me instead..
    Thank you!
    The Hen House family look very stylish indeed.. what fun it must've been to dress up in character.

    Michele x

    P.s Not a bad start with fame!!!!

  33. Great post! I loved it and really hope they do it next year. Have a sweet day!

  34. Looks like you all had a wonderful time...Great photo's and write up! as always..

  35. i am so so jealous!! i so wanted to go!

  36. Wow, what a great weekend!!! You all look so stylish, and well done for getting into Vogue.
    There looks like so much to see, you must of been tired out, bet you could off done with a few more days!!!
    Wonderful photos that capture the feel of the event, thanks for sharing.
    Linda O xx

  37. Soo glad you got to go Hen, I was in The Body Shop all day Saturday giving free make overs so didn't get to look round the festival too much. The build up the 2 days before where we built the pop up shop was great though as we go to see a lot of behind the scenes.
    Looking forward to next year already. Luv Sophie xxx


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