Archive for the ‘vintage’ Category

Martha Van Der Bly is a lovely actress and videomaker from Holland based in London. I had the opportunity to shoot her in Camden before I left to India.

“She’d frustrate you. She’d irritate you beyond measure but you forgave her…

because you sensed she was wise and that she knew things and, if you were lucky,

she might tell, but like Mary Poppins… she never told.”


October 15th, 2010.

The party is titled Bal Argentèe. It is held at Stoke Place, situated in the countryside, one hour from London. The three storey ‘William and Mary’ style house was built as a family home in 1690 by Patrick Lamb. Later, east and west wings were added to the building creating a substantial and impressive country house and the infamous talents of Capability Brown turned the surrounding grounds into a quintessential rural idyll. Stoke Place is now a 30 bedroom hotel.

The coach to go there leaves from Hanover Square, near Oxford circus. i can e already the atmosphere inside. People chat and already drink, even without bar. Small bottle of spirits and wine spread along the seats. Many people wear silver dresses because of the theme of the night. The countryside house is surrounded by grass and style is lovely. A nice twister stairs go up to the first floor, the wall is green and decorated by many empty frames and long chandelier which hang down in the middle and light up this corner. I go inside a room where many dresses are ready to be worn by the guests, women and gentlemen.

In the backyard a beautiful lady with a white dress plays chess with two gentlemen with the light comes from the house and long shadows reach out the forest around. The Astrological Cocktail Lounge feature a zodiac cocktail list and it a perfect spot to observe the night sky. And many more surprises…

September 25th, 2010

The French phrase ‘La Belle Epoque’ refers to the pre-war ‘fine period’ typified by extravagant dressing and the height of luxury living for the elite.

At the door Nadia give me a really nice welcome. She is very nice with me, she brings me inside and she orders a drink at the bar, a nice cocktail with a delicate taste of lemon. It sounds to be in the 20’s in America, but I am in East London. Can can dancers, acrobatic performance, Montmarte music, corsets and much more. The room is quite dark, few chandeliers light the bar upstairs, some spotlights light up the acrobats, a nice woman makes face paintings and red curtains on the walls give a touch of glamour to the room. But the modern disco music during the last two hours I think is not really appropriate.

The Last Tuesday Society is a ‘Pataphysical organization founded by William James at Harvard in the 1870s and presently run by The Chancellor, Mr.Viktor Wynd and the Tribune, Suzette Field with the aid of The Fellows of The Society.

It is devoted to exploring and furthering the esoteric, literary and artistic aspects of life in London and beyond.

The party on Saturday night is near Charing Cross. Outside it doesn’t look a public club, but once you open the door some stairs go down, you can feel under your feet a soft carpet and listen some old music. At the entrance a nice woman give to everybody a peacock plume. People are really elegant and a tall “lady”, who looks like a child, with a pink miniskirt, walk around with a plastic doll taking care of it. It is surreal.

“an achievement in art or in letters grows more interesting when we begin to percieve its connections; and indeed it maybe said that the study of connections is the recognised function of intellegent criticism”

Henry Jame

“One must give one’s body pleasure, so that one’s soul is happy there”

Viktor Wynd

Thursday September 9th

I heard about a vintage night in occasion of the 4th birthday of the comedy “The 39 Steps” at Criterion Theatre in Piccadilly Circus. When I arrive there I meet Fleur de Guerre and I thank her because she gave me the contact of the office where I asked for the permission to come and take pictures at the vintage night. John Buchan’s classic novel The 39 Steps has been consistently popular since it was first published in 1915. Two films have been made after and this new version at the theatre mix the previous one. The comedy celebrate 4 years of shows after 95 years since the original novel.

The table in the middle of the room is plenty of small pastry made by The Vintage Patisserie. I taste some of them and to be honest they are too sweet and not really good, but maybe I am too exigent because I am Italian. I don’t think so, anyway. The bartenders are serving vodka and orange juice and three women doing vintage hairdressing  and make up and nice 40’s music by Johnny Vercoutre of Time for Tea.

Saturday September 11th.

I take two bus to get to the secret location in Dalston. I have the address and the name of the Club: BOYS CLUB. I look for it, but it is so difficult to find it. I ask someone in the street, but they don’t knowexactly where it is. Ok. I decide to go back to the bus stop and have a look the map there. So, now I know where the street is located. I find it but at the number I have I can see a sort of house which looks like a church and finally I can read on the top of the main door BOYS CLUB. Great news. I knock the door and someone open it. At the entrance a couple of guys were chatting in front of decadent stairs and old frames on the wall. I go through another door and a nice lady seats at a table with the light of only one candle. I told her my name and explain that I talked by email with Die-Freche Muse but she says that this is the name of the party, while she is looking for my name with difficulty. Finally after 2 minutes she find myself and I have free access. The light is very low, the place is surreal, the music is from the 40’s and the people wearing vintage clothes is busy for drinking and chatting. The atmosphere is amazing. Lovely girls are around. They are really fascinating. Baron Von Sanderson is the organizer of the event. On the balcony upstairs people smoke and slowly the room, during the night, smell of smoke. A nice Asian woman perform burlesque, a singer sing live French songs while a gentleman play a classical guitar. The dj plays vintage music and people have fun dancing in couple, like many years ago. There is also a group of very young guys. Vintage doesn’t have age!!!!

I think the members of New Sheridans Club would ike to see more pictures for that special night. The light was really low and technically difficult to take picture. I hate flash because it kills the warm atmosphere. So, I decided to use only the tiny light available and try get something different.

It is time for the New Sheridans Club summer party “The Far Pavilions” at Salon d’Etè. An amazing vintage atmosphere, the right music, the right clothes, the right people. Candles on the tables light up the guests with a warm light, a lovely singer on the stage performs with a band, a funny game is played on the stage, shooting a flying piece of crispy bread is the goal. The social aspect is at the peak and never as now I really feel to be back in the past. I am really fascinated by a lovely woman who is wearing a Victorian dress, her elegance is something indescribable. Mirrors on the wall reflect the person dancing on the floor swing, couples chatting with charm and off course many people have fun drinking and get drunk. This has been the same for ages. Incredible night!!

Back again to shoot for my project retro socialising. Yesterday all day has been dedicated to it. In the morning it took almost two hours to get the Richardson Evans Memorial Playing Fields where The Tashes Trophy was held. A cricket match, organized by the New Sheridans Club, played by the Hirsute Gentlemen against the Clean-Shaven players. It was a funny game. A guy smoking a pipe during the game, an Australian with long hair man wearing an army uniform from the 60’s and much more. The public was chatting and having pic -nic on the grass and wearing vintage clothes, drinking champagne.

An exciting night yesterday at Proud Club in London with Tassel Club. Scarlett Martini from Rome, Banbury Cross, Sophia St Viller, Peacock and more performed in a fantastic glamour atmosphere. A mix of vintage, music, dresses, lingerie, strip tease.

Another night spent for my project about retro socialising. I went to the New Sheridans Club Night at The Wheatsheaf, where I knew many members of this vintage club.

Evadne Raccat talked about “pretty ladies in pretty dresses” with an elaboration of The Duchess of Devonshire’s Ball. Held in 1897, this fancy-dress party, with royal guests of honour, was notable because Lafayette set up a photo booth and made records of many of the costumes, giving an insight into the telling ways that different guests interpreted the code of historical or exotic dress.

This is my first event of vintage, The Chap Olympiad. I am at Bedford Square in London and it seems to be in the 40s. Back to the past for few hours. Music, games, food and vintage clothes. Many beautiful ladies seat on the grass having pic-nic, chatting and take a cup of tea. People dance and have fun, men smoke pipes.