maandag 19 december 2016

It's the season: Sinterklaas, (pre-)Christmas decorations & outfits

With only a few more days until Christmas I'm quite busy with preparations. Like every year I'll do the Christmas dinner cooking for my family and I'm throwing my own little midwinter-party for friends on Wednesday. So now it is down to grocery shopping and wrapping gifts.
But other preparations have been going on for a while longer.

In the Netherlands we traditionally give and receive gifts on the 5th of December instead of Christmas. Saint Nicolas (Sinterklaas) has been celebrated in our country for centuries, long before his younger brother Santaclaus was invented.
I celebrated it with my friends from Club Interbellum.

What I wore:
The week before I had found this amazing dress at the Waterlooplein flea-market at my favorite stall.
I think it is great for the festive season with the ruby red velvet trimmings.

Though the dress looks stunning it has been well loved, moth holes have been carefully darned and patched under the armpits have been preplaced. It has a strange construstion that suggests I might have been made out of something else. The fabric feels a bit like that of a thin coat too.
The woman who wore it can't have been very tall, if I were an inch taller it would have been too short.

It pairs well with burgundy accessoiries, especially the hat that has a velvet decoration at the back.

We celebrated Sinterklaas with Paul and Marjolein in their new home in Deventer. Steve dressed up as Sinterklaas like last year. Thanks to all three of them for making the day!

Here are the gifts I got from Sinterklaas & Marjolein: 30's/40's straw summerhat, old newspaper, mirror, plaid shawl, girls books, a very good cook book from 1938 with lots of 'how to' pictures and some candles for the tree.

I love decorating for Christmas so I have a real tree for which the couch has to move out fo the living room.
I have very colorful bulbs that I've collected since I was about four. My grandfather painted a bulb for me every year with my name, the year and some scene. These might be a bit crude but they are so very dear to me. Most decorations have a story or are souvenirs.
This is the tree with the Nativity and two fully fashioned stockings on the wall ;)

Just some of the 'girls' in my tree:
The girl from the 'Nutcracker', one of the first ornaments I bought after moving out at 18

This cutie was bought in Prague this year.

A victorian lady I bought when visiting a Dickens fair when I was 16

In my Nativity Mary has twins ;). I got the statues from my maternal grandmother who did not have a place for them after moving to a home for elderly people. They are probably 40's or 50's. The second baby Jesus belonged my paternal grandmother and was given to me after she bought a prettier one in Rome.

So on to some outfits from the last week, lots of reds:
A very simple 30's/40's dress with a white collar.

Such a cute 40's dress. I feel a bit to grown up for it but I want to keep wearing it. The embroidery was done by hand and has it's faults which is somehow endearing.

A practical plaid skirt that goes well with the scarf I got at Sinterklaas. The cardigan belongs to a set. I'll wear it with the skirt on Christmas proper.

Same cardigan paired with one of my favorite 1940's rayon print dresses. Love the defined shoulders.

Like every year I also helped decorate the tree at my parent's.
Their livingroom is quite high so the tree is about 3 metres. How can I resist an opportunity to decorate a real tree that big?

They only have silver bulbs, collected since the 70's when they got married.

After putting the tree up these are the three stages of decorating ;)

My father took some pictures of me and the tree in a pretty dress.
He got the crazy idea to make me stand on a kind of pedestal.... well at least you get a good view of the dress that way.

I bought it togheter with the one I wore at Sinterklaas. It is from the late 30's made out of thin silk crêpe with a bakelite clasp and a delicate lace frontpiece.

I wore a little bow in my hair (it looks short because I did not brush out my spongeroller curls)
There's also a Nativity at my parent's on a rather larger scale.

Now I'm really looking forward to hosting my party in two days.
More on that in a next post :)

Merry Christmas

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