Merry Christmas – Cards Through The Decades

Did you know the first Christmas card was invented here in Blighty by Sir Henry Cole? Back in 1843 (three years after the ‘penny post’ was created) he joined forces with his artist friend John Horsley to create a three panelled Christmas card featuring a variety of festive scenes. Only 1000 of these cards were printed and sold for 1 shilling a piece – they are now hugely collectable and very rare!

It wasn’t until 1875 when Christmas cards became more affordable thanks to printer Louis Prang that sending cards to your loved ones started to become a tradition adopted by all.

In honour of the festive season we’ve gathered together some examples of Christmas cards from our favourite 7 decades…which one tickles your fancy??

From the 1920s:

From the 1930s:

From the 1940s:

From the 1950s:

From the 1960s:

From the 1970s:

From the 1980s:

Let us know which is your favourite by tweeting us @judyvintagefair, snapping pictures of your own vintage christmas cards and tagging our Instagram page @judysvintagefair or commenting below!

We would also like to take this opportunity to thank all our wonderful, loyal customers and traders for an incredible 2013, we’ve had some incredible events and met some amazing people!

Have a wonderful christmas and a fabulous new year!!

Jolly Retro Regards,

Judy HQ


Judy’s Affordable Gift Ideas – Week Two!

We’re another week closer to Christmas and the shopping frenzy really has started! For all of you who’ve been whirling around this week here’s a catch up of this weeks fabulous gift ideas.

Check out this gorgeous pair of glass boudoir pots complete with a fragrant peppermint & rose candle! Only £25 for the pair from Vintage Table.

Available to buy here.

Know someone who likes to be pampered?

The ‘Bombshell Kisses gifty set’ comes with a delicious array of products in raspberry, cherry and strawberry scents (and they are all homemade). Only £25 for the set from Granny Sallys Soap Kitchen.

Available to buy here.

A perfect stocking filler for the DIY fan in your home! This 1958 Mechanix Illustrated DIY magazine includes the Lazy Man’s Lawn Mover (Front cover), how to build a model steam car and more. Only £3 from What’s Your Tale, Nightingale.

Available to buy here.

A perfect present for anyone who loves to bake (we think it would look gorgeous on your Christmas table full of mince pies too)! This floral china cake stand is only £25 from Retrovert.

Available to buy here.

We love a good tin here at Judy HQ and what a corker this is! Only £10 from Boomerang Vintage.

Sold at our Old Spitalfields Christmas Market (but check out the website there is lots of other lovely stuff on there)!

Know someone who loves books and jewellery? (We sure do!)

These cameo necklaces come with custom quotes or images! Why not get a snippet from their favourite book made into jewellery! At only £5 they are a steal from Bunny Beads.

Available to buy here.

Using old vintage books to make notebooks – whatever next?! Available in a range of sizes, all with unique vintage covers (we might get some for Judy HQ)! Only £6 from Retro From Scratch.

Available to buy here.

Keep your eye out for our posts at 5pm everyday on our Facebook page and our Instagram.

Warm Retro Regards,

Judy HQ


Judy HQ at Vervia’s Attic Estate Sale

Imagine our delight at Judy HQ when we were invited to the estate sale of the decade ‘Vervia’s Attic’.

Vervia Todd, the lady behind the wardrobe, sadly passed away aged 92 in 2012. A wonderful, kind and stylish character who’s obsession with clothes spanned decades. Brought up on the phrase ‘never throw anything away that might be of use’ she hoarded almost everything in her house in Houghton-le-Spring. The collection even included clothing dating back to the Edwardian era (her Grandmothers).

Tragically, during World War 2, Vervia lost her beloved Fiancé. Her wedding dress was on display during the event, a stunningly embellished gown she never got the chance to wear.

Remaining unmarried for the duration of her life, Vervia’s attention turned to clothes. She would regularly travel abroad, buying fabulous dresses, skirts, coats and jackets, these often remained unworn and were stored in her attic. One designer dress was even found stashed in the chimney! Her taste was impeccable, and being lucky enough to have a great figure in her youth, she could wear almost anything.

The astonishing thing about this story, is that her family had no idea about the collection. Carefully stashed away in suitcases around her home, the collection was only discovered once they started clearing her home in 2012!

‘[Her friend] Sheila knew that she kept things but I don’t think she realised the extent until they went up to the attic.’

The owners of vintage shop ‘Dregs of Society’ in Whitley Bay have been lovingly restoring, cleaning and cataloguing the collection for sale for over a year with Vervia’s best friend Sheila Ellis. With the help of friends and relatives, the sale of a lifetime was hosted at Vervia’s home on 7th December.

In addition to the huge fashion collection, there was a whole room dedicated to vintage cosmetics and toiletries, many unopened.

There was another room dedicated to lingerie, nightwear and children’s clothing. Although Vervia never had children of her own, she loved being an Auntie and spoiling her nieces and nephews with gorgeous outfits!

Amongst the collection were girdles, bullet bras, 1930’s silk briefs, stockings, bed jackets and slips.

Amazingly, there were even some Edwardian night dresses and under garments…

One of our favourite items in this room were the unopened stockings. Still in the original envelopes, Paula from Dregs of Society was the first person to open these envelopes during the pre-sale preparation. Post-war, stockings were like gold dust but Vervia had hers posted from Gibraltar to ensure she was always stocked up…

Next up was the separates room. Packed with blouses, skirts, knitwear, coats and even some oriental style umbrellas.

Our Fair Manager Emily managed to snap up the dreamy blue patterned wiggle dress and jacket set dating from the 1950’s.

Another room was dedicated to shoes, bags, hats, scarfs and gloves! The shoe collection even rivalled Judy’s…

The room we all found truly overwhelming was the dress room. To think that one person collected all of these exquisite gowns, day dresses and frocks knocked us speechless.

“I cried when I came into this room for the first time”, said on site fashion stylist for the day, Krista Wilson, “it is such an amazing but sad story”.

Accompanying the dresses were a collection of Vervia’s Fathers belongings including his top hat and leather dentist surgeons bag.

If that wasn’t enough there was even a fabric room, filled with surplus fabrics – many used in dresses for sale on the day – and haberdashery items.

Throughout the day Vervia’s friends and family were on hand with cups of tea and tales of Vervia’s amazing life which really added an incredibly personal touch to the event. All of us at Judy HQ bought some fantastic items we will treasure forever!

A huge thanks to everyone involved in the sale and especially Paula and Mickey from Dregs of Society for inviting us to be part of such a once in a lifetime opportunity.

Here’s Fair Manager Emily with some of our haul – we’ll be sure to share our finds with you soon.

Retro Regards,

Judy HQ


7 Decades of Festive Frocks!

We’re feeling ever so merry here at Judy HQ and with our Christmas party just round the corner our attention is turning towards that all important festive frock! That said, we have a dilemma, with so many decades for inspiration, which do we choose?

Here’s a countdown of festive frocks from our favourite decades to inspire you (and us) this yuletide!

First up, the 1920’s. The era of drop waists, pearls and plenty of shimmer, we adore this perfectly layered dress. Paired with a statement turban they must have been a head turner at their festive soirée!

From the 1930’s, this silk number will have no doubt impressed. With luxurious fabric, jewel detail and a neckline to send jaws to the floor, this glamourous starlet must have been the belle of the ball!

Next up, the 1940’s. This sparkler of a gown really has been given the Midas touch. We adore the gem detailing, especially around the waist – we wish we had somewhere fancy to wear a dress like this!

Forever one of our favourite and most flattering era’s, the 1950’s! This yuletide number has a perfect subtle shimmer and keeps truly festive in green and gold…(we have to admit the puppy is pretty adorable too!).

Straight from the 1960’s is not one, but four festive frocks! We can’t decide which of these waist cinching beauties is our favourite…which one takes your fancy? (We’ll take them all).

Because everyone needs to wear a glittery maxi dress with silver gloves at one point in their life. Here are a pair of floor length patterned beauties from the 1970’s (we do wonder what’s in that bag though…)

Finishing up our showcase of sparkle is this heavily beaded number from the 1980’s! Paired with a clashing leather trouser this look works the ‘if in doubt, wear black’ rule to a tee…

We want to know what era you are inspired by this festive season! Share your photos with us on Instagram using the hashtag #judysfestivefrocks we promise we will share the teams looks too.

Glamourous Retro Regards,

Judy HQ


Festive Style Stars – Leeds

Last Sunday we gathered together some of our favourite traders and set up shop at Leeds Corn Exchange! With a decadent mixture of party dresses, one of a kind jewellery, unique vintage gifts and some delicious cakes from Love Rouge, we made sure there was something to tickle everyones festive fancy.

Armed with golden stars and her trusty camera, Fair Manager Emily kept her eye open for some swoon worthy vintage styles. We have to admit we think we have the UK’s most stylish customers and the folk in Leeds did not disappoint!

Our first style star of the day was awarded to this fashion savvy lady for her incredible 60’s inspired ensemble. Everything about this look screamed 60’s, the hair, the coat, the boots…how could we not award a style star for this outfit?

Brightly coloured hair seemed to be a trend at our Leeds event, with the ever marvellous Love Rouge lady Sophie donning bright blue hair! This bright turquoise effort put our hair to shame, accompanied with some amazing eyebrows and bright red lipstick she is definitely a girl after our own heart!

Carrying on the jewel colour theme with gorgeous two tone hair is our next style star! We aspire to be this fashion forward in a few years time – we adore the vintage style glasses and red lippy too.

We love winter coats here at Judy’s and this beauty was no exception! Paired with enviable vintage hair (please teach us), a splash of tartan and some statement shoes, we think this is the perfect vintage winter look!

Our final style star was another 60’s inspired lady with a ‘hive to rival Bridgette Bardot! We particularly love the mint and gold dress – a perfect hint of festive glamour (and we love glamour!)

We also had two of Leeds best fashion bloggers write posts about our event (thanks ladies)!:

What Alice Wore

Glasses Girl

Do you have a vintage look you’d love to share with us? Tag us in pictures on Instagram @judysvintagefair or Twitter @judyvintagefair and use the hashtag #stylestar we always love seeing your looks!

Warm Retro Regards,

Judy HQ xx

Judy’s Affordable Gift Ideas – Week One!

This year Judy HQ have put together a bundle of their best gift ideas and all so you can seriously impress this festive season. With gifts to suit all budgets (our middle name is affordable after all) we are sure there will be something just perfect for your loved ones.

For you busy bee’s who may have missed our posts over on our Facebook and Instagram pages here is a quick round up of this weeks gift ideas…

Immaculate 1930’s dressing table set – perfect for any vintage beauty! Only £30 from Your Vintage Life.

This item has been sold (we aren’t surprised isn’t it divine!)

1950’s festive floral magazine rack, a perfect statement piece for any vintage home.
Only £24 from Lace & Liquor Vintage.

Available to buy here.

For the unorganised among you, this pocket size Make & Do pad is the perfect choice. There’s even space to note your reward for making and doing all those things (a cake or two perhaps?)
Only £6 from Vivid Please.

Available to buy here

One for the Dr Who fans, these bespoke clip-on bow ties come in a range of custom fabrics including this amazing tardis print.
Only £23.99 from Button Button.

Available to buy here.

A fan of vintage comics? Then these are perfect for you, all comics come framed and in a variety of sizes.
Starting at £25 from Festival Fifty One.

Available to buy at Old Spitalfields Market on Saturday! Click here for the event page!

Location, location, location! These framed vintage maps are available in a variety of locations around the UK.
Prices start at £25 from The Sustainable Home.

Available to buy here.

These antique french keys are a perfect little token of love for that special someone (they can even be personalised!).
Only £5 from Pip ‘N’ Mix.

Available to buy here.

Keep tuned in to our posts at 5pm everyday on our Facebook page and our Instagram.

Warm Retro Regards,

Judy HQ xx