Friday, 30 July 2010


I have been working on a new range of limited edition 'PulpArt' canvases in readiness for September's Vintage Fair. Here is a preview of some work in progress which should be ready for this Sunday's Vintage Sunday at the Empire.

Each canvas is a one-off and is created using cuttings from 1940s/50s magazines with the addition of pulp-fiction style storylines created with letters recycled from modern-day celebrity gossip magazines.

Small canvases cost £18 and large canvases cost £38.

Vintage Sunday at the Empire takes place on Sunday 1st August at The Empire, Botanic Avenue, Belfast from 12 - 4.30pm. Admission costs £2.

Thursday, 29 July 2010


Looking for a cure for the rainy day blues? Come along to the last of our summer series of Vintage Sundays at the Empire on 1st August where Little Blue Cottage will have lots of reductions and bargains on their vintage clothing as owner Cerian makes space in preparation for the arrival of her baby in September!

We are loving this preview of some of the items they will be bringing along for our delectation this Sunday.

1950s Angora sweater and 1970s plaid circle skirt

1960s Mini Dress with hand crochet collar and cuffs

Lace tea dress dated c.1915, made with Alençon lace

1970s Laura Ashley playsuit

1940s wartime dress with ethnic illustration

1950s Oriental Jacket

Vintage Sunday at the Empire takes place on Sunday 1st August at The Empire, Botanic Avenue, Belfast from 12 - 4.30pm. Admission costs £2.


The Vinyl Countdown will be having a price countdown on albums at this weekend's Vintage Sunday at the Empire. With albums priced from £3 and singles priced from 50p there will be something to suit all budgets.

Additional savings can be made if you buy more than 1 album - a £1 reduction on 2 albums purchased, £2 reduction on 3 albums purchased, £3 reduction on 4 albums purchased, and so on..... The more you buy, the more you save!

The last of our summer series of Vintage Sundays at the Empire takes place on Sunday 1st August at The Empire, Botanic Avenue, Belfast from 12 - 4.30pm and admission costs only £2.

Wednesday, 28 July 2010


We are delighted that our resident retro hairstylist, Kelly McLean of Ashby Hair, has reached the final of the Hairdresser category in the Ulster Tatler People of The Year Awards 2010. Good luck Kelly for the final on 16th September!

Kelly will be available for glamorous upstyles, beehives and curly hair-dos at our Vintage Sunday at the Empire this weekend. Be pampered by Kelly as she teases your tresses and transforms you into a pin-up star for only £10.

Hair by Kelly McLean, Make up - Clair McEvoy, Photography - Ryan Wilson

Vintage Sunday at the Empire takes place on Sunday 1st August from 12 - 4.30pm, at the Empire Music Hall, Botanic Avenue, Belfast. Admission costs £2.

Monday, 26 July 2010


At the weekend I finally got around to doing something with some of my old magazines and decorated this tailor's dummy with pictures of 20th century film stars, models, designers and other fashion figures.

Having already decoupaged a similar tailor's dummy with cuttings from 1930s French fashion magazines, I had intended this creation to follow a theme of 1940s/50s film stars but once I got busy with the scissors I found so many images that I wanted to use that the project took on a life of its own. The result is that Marilyn Monroe, Grace Kelly, Audrey Hepburn and Lauren Bacall rub shoulders with Coco Chanel, Sophia Loren, Twiggy, Jerry Hall and keep company with the likes of Madonna and Grace Jones.

The addition of fashion sketches combined with tag lines from style and beauty magazines gives the finished product a punchy feel - mixing the old with the new in a celebration of fashion through the 20th Century right up to the modern day, so that a sixties mini dress or a 1980s big hairdo look equally at home beside a dress from the golden age of couture.

'Here Come The Girls' is now available to purchase, so if you are interested in acquiring this one-off piece you can pop along to Vintage Sunday at the Empire this weekend where it will be for sale at the Decadence stand. 

Vintage Sunday at the Empire - Sunday 1st August @ The Empire, Botanic Avenue, Belfast from 12 - 4.30pm. Admission costs £2.

Friday, 23 July 2010


So the July weather is as disappointing as ever, but a little (or a lot) of rain shouldn't put a damper on our summer Staycation. Though small, Northern Ireland has a wealth of ideas at our disposal to have fun right here in our own backyard and with Frock Around The Clock holding the last of the summer series of Vintage Sundays at the Empire on 1st August there will be no shortage of inspiration for ideas on how to enjoy the last days of summer while avoiding poor exchange rates and guilt-inducing carbon footprints. 

Shopping at a vintage fair can unearth some fabulous objects to inspire ideas for stay-at-home fun. Here are some treasures that have been found at past FATC events this year. For a picnic in the park or at the beach what about a vintage picnic basket, pretty rockabilly sundress, headscarf and shades? China cups, teapots, cake stands and silver sugar tongs are perfect for a garden party or afternoon tea while a 1940s tea dress and gloves are the perfect attire for eating strawberries and cream from retro dessert dishes.

Vintage clothing is perfect for a themed party. Think vintage Hawaiian shirts and 1950s swimsuits for a touch of Viva Las Vegas pool-lounging style, or a slinky catsuit for a 1970s barbecue. Complete the scene with retro party food and cocktails and spin some vintage records on the turntable to add music from yesteryear. For a games evening or to keep boredom at bay on a rainy day pick up some vintage board games and jigsaws, experiment in the kitchen using vintage cookbooks, or have an old movie afternoon with friends.

Thinking about home improvements while you are off work? Everything old is new again when it comes to beautifying your living space, and original vintage furnishings are now considered the height of chic. Whether your taste is chintzy china or achingly hip sleek design, Frock Around The Clock offers 20th century decorative items to suit even the lowest budget.

Due to the one-off nature of vintage treasures you never quite know what you will find at Frock Around The Clock. What is guaranteed is that you will discover an abundance of kitsch, quirky and incredibly cool items from vintage clothing, accessories and jewellery to kitchenalia, vinyl and memorabilia. The possibilities for inspiration are endless - just let your imagination run free.

Vintage Sunday at the Empire takes place on Sunday 1st August at The Empire, Botanic Avenue, Belfast from 12 - 4.30pm. Admission costs £2 and tea and coffee are available to purchase on the upper balcony. For an exhibitor list and more information on all the Frock Around The Clock events visit

Monday, 19 July 2010


One of the perks of searching for new exhibitors for my vintage fairs is that I get to meet so many wonderfully creative people along the way, and to see how their interests fuel the creative fires. One of my latest discoveries is Nichola Clarke who, having graduated from Queens University Belfast with a degree in Art History and Film Studies, designed and recycled cards for a local charity but has more recently had the desire to create something unique whereby she could use both her skills and her interests. Thus Nik's Vintage was born.

Nichola designs and creates greetings cards using vintage cigarette and bubblegum cards, stamps, postcards, recycled greeting cards and pretty much anything else she can get her hands on. She also sources original unused vintage greetings cards to sell to customers who want to buy 100% vintage. Nichola prides herself on the uniqueness of her cards and in giving these vintage images a new lease of life she does her utmost to preserve them as best as she can.

Nichola says "Nik's Vintage stems from a number of passions of mine that somehow all manage to play a part in the creative process of my card making. Less obvious passions such as music from the 1920s-50s and classic cinema have a huge influence on my work, as well as an obvious passion for vintage graphic design. Take for example my cinematic and musical influences. I always make my cards to a pre 1960's playlist as it is the lyrics to many Fred Astaire, Al Jolson and Perry Como numbers for example, as well as film knowledge and dialogue, that give me the right greeting for the right vintage image. For example, pairing Joan Crawford with the greeting 'Dearest' or a pretty young actress with 'Babyface'."

Nichola will be bringing the Nik's Vintage range to our next Vintage Sunday at the Empire on 1st August where you can view and purchase her work.

The next, and last, of our Vintage Sundays at the Empire takes place on Sunday 1st August at the Empire Music Hall, Botanic Avenue, Belfast from 12 - 4.30pm. Admission costs £2.

Tuesday, 6 July 2010


Our third Vintage Sunday at the Empire took place on Sunday 4th July, and despite the erratic weather swinging from sunny spells to heavy rain with high winds throughout the day we had a fabulous turnout of shoppers making a declaration of independence from the football and tennis.

Popular buys were vintage bags and jewellery, postcards, magazines, books, dresses and homewares. Jennifer Robinson's necklaces made with vintage thimbles and other charms were also a big hit. The last Vintage Fair at the Empire for this year will be held on Sunday 1st August and we are aiming to squeeze in as many vintage treasures as possible so please mark the date in your diary.

Monday, 5 July 2010


Frock Around The Clock Vintage Fair's resident retro hair stylist - the lovely Kelly McLean of Ashby Hair on Stranmillis has been nominated for Ulster Tatler's Hairdresser of the Year.

Many of our Vintage Fair visitors, brides-to-be and newsletter subscribers have visited Kelly for a wonderful hairdo for a special occasion and have loved her hair transformation skills and her complete fabulousness so much that they return time and time again.

If you would like to join us in voting for Kelly to win this award, please visit and put Kelly McLean beside "Hairdresser of the Year". Enter your  details and submit your nomination. VOTING CLOSES THIS WEDNESDAY AT MIDNIGHT!

Here are some images of fabulous hair styles that our Kelly has created:

Friday, 2 July 2010


Fed up with the football? Tired of tennis? Bored of bowls? Fear not - help is at hand! Escape to sanctuary at the Belfast Empire this Sunday 4th July when our Vintage Sundays at the Empire make a return for the first of two summer dates.

Showcasing sellers of all that is kitsch and quirky and incredibly cool, there will be vintage clothing and accessories, antique and vintage jewellery, vinyl records, vanity items, homewares, bric-a-brac, curious curios, handmade jewellery and accessories created from vintage textiles, and much, much more! Ladies will also be able to be pampered when they visit the retro hairstyling stand for some glamorous upstyling or tumbling curls at the talented hands of Kelly McLean.

Our vintage fairs attract fashionistas, stylists, students, designers, collectors, eco-conscious shoppers and other style-savvy individuals searching for a unique bargain, from all over Ireland as well as tourists looking for a shopping experience off the beaten track. Vintage Sundays at the Empire are our smaller events and have a wonderful laid back atmosphere making them the perfect destination for the leisurely Summer Sunday shopper looking for unique one-off finds.

Recently mentioned in Red's mini magazine 'Britain's Best Kept Secrets' as a Shoppers' Delight, we are proud to say that Frock Around The Clock events are Northern Ireland's premier vintage fairs taking place regularly at several different venues around Belfast.

Hope to see you this Sunday 4th July at the Empire Music Hall, Botanic Avenue, Belfast from 12 - 4.30pm, admission £2.