It was my 40th birthday party last weekend. Determined to leave my thirties with a bang, I chose a 1940s Blitz theme and it was BRILLIANT. Everyone got into the Sptifire spirit and my husband did me proud organising it.
The venue was a pub in Cambridgeshire called The Willow Tree. From ration-themed canapes to marmalade martinis, their hosting skills were beyond amazing. We also hired an incredible vintage harmony group from Essex called Fox, Wiggle and Sass. They sang 1940s tunes, but also did a modern set in retro style (including an insanely good swing version of Livin’ on a Prayer) and gamely learned Candyman by Christina Aguilera for a surprise girls-only flash mob. Ebay and vintage shops were the source of all the decorations: there were ’40s magazines, newspapers and ration booklets, a cardboard cutout of Winston Churchill and an enormous theatrical sign from Ebay as the dance floor backdrop. The best bit? Hiring a photo booth complete with comedy props which became the best record of how ‘Blitzed’ we all actually got! It really was the best start to my 40th I could’ve hoped for.
3 steps to a ’40s-style makeover
From landgirls to tea dresses, austere ‘New Look’ style suits to post-Blitz film star glitz, the 1940s provided a fab fashion theme.
1. The Outfits
I sourced my black original ’40s evening gown on Ebay from America, my pearl earrings were my Nan’s. Ashling’s red dress was from House of Foxy. Robyn’s dress was from Daks, while her fur coat was her Mum’s.
Lots of my girlfriends found great dresses from online boutique Lindybop. M&S and ASOS had some great finds, too. Seamed tights, strings of pearls and T-bar shoes completed the looks.
2. The Hair
We got our inspiration from Pinterest and stylist Fiona from Pretty Me Vintage came to a pre-party makeover party at my house. We had a giggle getting our Victory Rolls done while we ate Victoria Sponge cake and drank prosecco. Ash had her incredible ‘do done in London by the team at Charlotte Cave. Robyn’s turban was a Topshop scarf!
3. The Make-up
Red nails, lips and false lashes were modelled by most of my girly guests whilst I was magically turned into a glam-looking starlet with smokey eyes, lashes and matte garnet lips.