Weekend at the Festival of Vintage in York


Finally, after a one-year break Mum and I went back to the Festival of Vintage in York. And for both days too! I didn’t want to miss an opportunity to wear something frilly, so out of the two outfits I brought one was fully lolita.

| Innocent World Georges Rose JSK | Innocent World Rose Lace Millefeuille bolero | offbrand blouse | AatP Lace Up Ribbon OTKs | Sosic Shop heels | Cutie Creator headbow | Claire's flower clip | Violet Fane brooch | 

I was going to curl my hair, but it was so rainy that it wouldn't survive stepping out of the door.

Georges Rose is one of those dresses that if you’re not too knowledgeable about either lolita or vintage fashion, people just assume you’re dressed in something nice from earlier in the XXth century. The super simple cut and timeless floral print makes this an excellent piece if you’d rather blend in and have fewer members of the public bother you. What’s more, that cut can’t handle any big poof, which is excellent when navigating large crowds, half of whom are wearing giant rockabilly petticoats themselves. To save on suitcase space, I wore this with brown, as these pieces could double up with my other outfit without being too shoehorned. Selfie was taken literally on the go, I was walking when I remembered that I didn’t take one and I really like how it turned out. Rainy days can be excellent for lighting!

I was going to take so many more pictures, to blog about the event properly, but didn’t. Between holding my jacket in one arm and browsing the wares with the other, I didn’t have the energy to take. So other than the sweets stand outside and this pretty shot of rainbow petticoats, I have nothing to offer you.

Fluffy rainbow of dreams. I was really tempted, actually.

Which in other words means that the event was absolutely amazing and I had a blast! Festival of Vintage in York is a true celebration of the first half of the XXth century, particularly the fashion. You can find anything, from clothes to homeware, from the 1920’s to the 1960’s, both original and reproductions, with occasional slightly earlier or later bits. On top of this there is a classic car display outside (which seems to have grown since the last time we were at this event), several stages with fashion shows, musicians and dancing taking place – including some dance lessons here and there – a vintage hair and makeup salon, and even a men’s barber shop! This is seriously a lot and while the York Racecourse, where it all takes place, has plenty of room for all of this, it can still be a lot.

So many classic cars in so many colours! You could easily do pretty photoshoots there.

Which is why it’s great that Mum and I managed to make it to the full weekend this time. On our first visit two years ago we only managed one day (and I’m pretty sure it was a Saturday) and we were absolutely dead by the end of it. Trying to see everything in one day (and still unsuccessfully) was a big ask and we came a little ill-prepared, not knowing what to expect. This time we knew what to anticipate: we brought some light lunchtime snacks to keep us going and decided that if we get too tired, we’ll just stop after the first hall and leave the other one for the next day. What’s more, Saturday was definitely the busier day and as the organisers have tried to squeeze as many vendors as possible, much of our time was spent in queues to even get to the stall to browse it. Pro tip: if you want to shop, but don’t want to battle literally hundreds of people, go on the Sunday. All the stuff that I had eyes on (whether it actually fit me or not) was still there on the Sunday and fewer people made the shopping experience much more pleasant.

Treat events like this like you would a con: bring a bottle of water and a snack!

So what did I buy? Well, much less than I had anticipated to. I came armed with loads of cash to spend on some amazing vintage clothes, but came back with only four items, two bought each day. While I purchased these mostly with lolita in mind, they will also compliment a lot of my vintage outfits. That hat is by far my biggest pride and joy! I completely did not intend to buy it, when I saw it on Saturday – but it was still there on Sunday, so I thought “I’ll just try it on”. Which turned into “Well, fuck, now I have to buy it”. I did not expect it to look this good on me and at a whopping price of £10 (for a 100% pure silk vintage hat!) how could I say no? At first I thought that it wouldn’t go with anything I own – and then I remembered my Flower Garden JSK, which is also an awkward dusty, pastel-y grey/lavender/pink/whatever shade. I haven’t put the two together yet, but I’m sure it’ll look stunning, even if it will make it look like a clash of historical fashions. Good thing lolita isn’t about historical accuracy, right?

Small haul that should see plenty of use. All of this cost me £40! (Wish I made a note of that flower clip's seller, they had loads of other gorgeous ones - the prettiest flower clips at the whole event!)

Bonus add-on – I have spotted another lolita on Saturday too! I regret not walking up to her and asking if she was in the comm, because I couldn’t find her later via Facebook (at least not in the York comm or via the event page). She was wearing Meta’s Daydreaming Goldfish in blue, so if you’re reading this, say hello, please! :)

Stock photo taken via Lolibrary.org - I do not own.

What sort of non-lolita events do you like wearing lolita to? Do you try to match the event’s theme or feel with your coord or just enjoy having an excuse to be frilly?

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