The Vintage Carnival and the Best Dressed competition

You knew I couldn’t keep my experience of the Carnival to myself, right? It can be summarised in one, unfortunate word: soggy. The weather was absolutely dreadful. It was such a shame, because there was so much that would have been amazing to do outside, and because of the heavy rain everyone poured in to do the indoor activities meaning you felt like you were in a human crush everywhere you went because the venues couldn’t really cope. But that aside – and you’d really think in this country we’d know how to get round this problem by now – it was a great event with lots to see and do (if you didn’t mind getting wet doing it).
I particularly love seeing vintage cars and it doesn’t get a lot better than a pink Caddilac, right?! There were actually more cars but in their midst was a car that is the spitting image of the car I’ve hired for my wedding. So much so that I had to Google the one I’d hired to work out if it was in fact actually my car. Turns out it isn’t, it was just almost identical. But anyway, to keep the secret I’m just giving you this beautiful Caddilac.
As you can see from my outfit, while many had opted to use the event as a chance to show off their pretty vintage finery, I’m always one for comfort and practicality, so I based my entire look around the fact I wanted to wear my jelly shoes, which are actually Crocs (I know) and the most comfortable shoes I own and I don’t even feel bad about loving them for that reason. Of course, my feet still got wet but at least my shoes didn’t get ruined. As I really don’t like wearing my dresses without heels as I’m so short, my faithful Bernie Dexter cigarette pants were the way to go. I haven’t featured those yet but I will at some point because they’re now my go-to pair of pants end of story.
Moving on, there were tonnes of stalls with vintage wares as you’d expect at something like this. It was hard to get a good look because the indoors parts were heaving, so only a couple of snaps here of some brooches and a cute pattern on a homemade dress from a lady who was selling them seriously cheaply. One problem we had was that it was cash only everywhere and we prioritised food above things, so ran out quickly. If that hadn’t happened I think I would have got some bits in the homeware section. EDIT: It’s due to my own idiocy I missed signs about cards being accepted on some stalls it seems! However I did try to get cash out on site but the ATM was out of order, so I think at that point I felt like it wasn’t meant to be anyway… I rather liked a red vintage frame bag, but when I tried to open it I trapped my finger in the clasp and it was genuinely one of the most painful fashion-related injuries I’ve incurred so it put me right off. Hmph.
At the Vintage Carnival 2016


At the Vintage Carnival 2016
Sorry, one more of that car…

CiCi at the Vintage Carnival 2016

Like practically everyone else, we sought refuge from the hammering rain in the tea room. I subconsciously chose the cake that best matched my outfit (no one believes me)…

Yummy cake at the Vintage Carnival 2016


CiCi pretending she didn't almost down this piece of cake in one
Shout out to my new favourite bardot top that you’ve literally just seen in this post. The lobster necklace is from Bow and Crossbones.
Onto the outfit competition! It was a lot of fun, everyone who entered walked up and took a strut and there were some gorgeous outfits. Also, several men entered which all of the judges, me included, loved. One of the men, who I don’t have a photo of, took third place in fact 🙂 Even though I wanted 23 to get a prize just for the pose…


Best dressed competition at the Vintage Carnival 2016


Best dressed competition at the Vintage Carnival 2016


Best dressed competition at the Vintage Carnival 2016
This pair entered as a couple and swing-danced their way across the stage. Cute!
The deliberation took a few minutes and I had made sure to perfect my resting bitch judge face for just this occasion.


Best dressed competition at the Vintage Carnival 2016


Best dressed competition at the Vintage Carnival 2016
And then, voila! The two lovely winners – first place on the right (clearly 13 is lucky for some!), second place on the left. We loved all the component parts of the winner’s outfit – she’d really worked hard to pull the look together. Both are such gorgeous girls and they were total sweethearts and so thrilled to win it made the torrential rain and damp totally worth the trip.


CiCi with 1st and 2nd place winners at the best dressed competition, Nottingham Vintage Carnival 2016
Maybe next year some sun, eh? Mind you, I’m not sure three big dresses would have fit into this shot!


  1. September 20, 2016 / 12:26 pm

    Aha, those are some of the cute croc sandals you were on about! I did look them up actually and some of the other styles are nice too. Who would have thought it?! You look absolutely dinky and adorable, I think you made such a sensible outfit choice for a dreary day. And a good cake choice, obviously.

    I hope you're having a good week, I'm back in work after three weeks off so it's a bit hard!! xx

    • September 20, 2016 / 12:33 pm

      I am not even ashamed about loving them as they are just so darn comfy! I want the navy glitter pair of these so bad.

      That's because I AM dinky. And I wish I wasn't so I could have worn a big ol' dress, but oh well we all have our problems 😉

      I'm not sure I could actually come back after three weeks off so bravo for showing up! xx

  2. September 20, 2016 / 12:44 pm

    Love all the outfits! I was inside the craft area teaching flower crowns making so never got out to see! Lovely post, I'm now updated ��

    • September 20, 2016 / 12:50 pm

      I totally missed you but I was curious about those flower crowns! Darn, should have looked harder…

  3. September 20, 2016 / 1:08 pm

    I really love the photo of you with that car, it was truly meant to be. You are going to look amazing with one just like it in your wedding photos, I can't wait! You already know that I adore that lobster necklace so I am very happy to see it again. This is another one for Santa's list this year! You picked the winners very well, both of these ladies look stunning – major purse envy over that gorgeous wicker handbag the winner carries.

    • September 21, 2016 / 12:21 pm

      I can't wait to meet my wedding car – I just love vintage cars so much! I think it's the runner-up that has the wicker handbag actually, but agree it's gorgeous!

  4. September 20, 2016 / 1:37 pm

    Sounds like a great day despite the weather! It's the worst when it happens at an event like this 🙁 I love your sensible outfit for the weather, I have Bernie Dexter jeans and I agree that they are awesome. I love the whole look and that necklace is too good. Everyone looks amazing and the winners look amazing. I couldn't help but laugh when I read about your resting bitch judge face :') hahaha. Ohhh and swoon to that pink car, I'm excited to see your wedding car!! x

    • September 21, 2016 / 12:22 pm

      I know, it really was such a shame! And I'm just such a grump in bad weather, even though I'm used to it destroying every outdoor thing I ever want to do!! x

  5. September 20, 2016 / 4:15 pm

    What fun to be a judge!

    Too bad about the weather, but it looks like everyone made the best of it and still had fun.


    • September 21, 2016 / 12:22 pm

      Such is the British way 😉

  6. September 20, 2016 / 7:18 pm

    Fantastic report! Despite the soggy weather and cramped indoor areas it looks like it was a really fun event. I love seeing the pic of the guy's pose who entered the contest and the couple that went entered together and danced across the stage. So much fun. I love the second place winner's outfit. So much wonderful coordinating pin dots! Also I love your shoes. I saw that croc's has really been coming out with cute shoes lately! Glad to hear they are also comfortable! <3

    • September 21, 2016 / 12:23 pm

      I actually saw the lovely lady who we chose as second place walking around the venue earlier that day and I was hoping she was going to enter!

  7. Debra
    September 20, 2016 / 7:21 pm

    I would have chosen amazing as the best word to describe the Vintage Carnival. Yes the weather was poor but I think the organisers held an excellent event. I'm also only short but did not feel hemmed in or that I was getting pushed around. I know a lot of the traders and quite a few of them have portable card machines. There were also cash machines available belonging to the race course. I attended the first event which I believe had increased attendance due to problems at the Atomic Festival and the organisers reacted considerably well on both occasions to unforseen circumstances.Okay not yet perfect but I think the organisers are still listening and more importantly learning how best to use the venue. Having said all that, I must say I thought you and your fellow judges were spot on with your choice of competition winners

    • September 20, 2016 / 7:34 pm

      I feel like I've been overly mean now but I didn't mean it! I'm really not good with the wet and I'm even worse with crowds… I didn't get pushed around though and I only tried to pay with card in the tea room so I should have asked the vendors on the stalls! As I said I think there is tonnes of potential with the event and the effort put in was obvious 🙂 no offence meant!

  8. Debra
    September 20, 2016 / 7:39 pm

    🙂 x

  9. September 21, 2016 / 5:18 am

    Looks like a fun time- that pink cadillac is amazing! And your outfit was super cute- even though you weren't able to wear a dress.
    The Artyologist

  10. September 21, 2016 / 8:17 am

    Just a quick note – We, Fezziwig's Vintage, sell homewares and have had a stall at both Carnival events this year and do take card payments. There is a sign on our stall and cards accounted for approx 25% of our takings at the September Carnival! Also, as it is held at the racecourse, there are cash point machines available. Hope you seek us out next year!

    • September 21, 2016 / 12:18 pm

      My apologies! I have added an edit above to correct my assumption and I'm sorry I didn't realise! I wonder if you were the stall with the cute fruit basket I was eyeing up on 😀 As I say above, we did find a cashpoint but it was sadly out of order 🙁

    • September 21, 2016 / 12:57 pm

      No worries! Just wanted to be sure that people know that most traders so have card machines (though often limited by Internet access). And , Oops! I didn't realise that the cash points weren't working. The bookies at the next race day wouldn't be happy!! Luckily the fruit basket wasn't ours haha! Will you be visiting the 2 LouLou Vintage Fairs @ Albert Hall during October?

    • September 27, 2016 / 12:31 pm

      Yes, having sold at events for work I know full well what those card machines can be like!! I probably won't be at those fairs I'm afraid 🙁

  11. September 21, 2016 / 10:22 am

    Ouch! You poor thing! I winced in sympathy for you as I read about your purse related injury. I hope that it didn't do any long term damage and that you were still able to enjoy the day.

    Love your adorable outfit – Crocs very much included. I can honestly say that they're the first pair of Crocs I've ever seen and suddenly lusted after. 🙂

    xoxo ♥ Jessica

    • September 21, 2016 / 12:19 pm

      Thanks for the sympathy! It was one of those things where you couldn't quite believe how painful it was, but thankfully it didn't leave any lasting damage, just a bruised finger for a few days!

      I really recommend these Crocs, they are by far my most comfortable shoes now, above every pair of trainers I've ever owned! And they've not given me a single blister which is slightly astounding! xx

  12. September 21, 2016 / 11:17 am

    Looks like a wonderful event, even with all that rain! The two chosen winners looks absolutely beautiful in there dresses! Loving that pink car as well! xo

  13. September 21, 2016 / 2:35 pm

    Your outfit is super. It's nice to see really great casual looks that are also beautifully vintage – casual can be the hardest thing to get right, I feel.

    How annoying about the rain! It seems to have spoiled lots of things over recent weekends.

  14. September 22, 2016 / 10:12 am

    I love both the winner and runner up outfits, so pretty!

    I love classic cars too and have my own. I have also been promised a ride in a 1958 Cadillac so that's very exciting!

  15. September 23, 2016 / 2:23 pm

    that car is something else 😀 great look.

  16. September 26, 2016 / 1:52 pm

    Why are we always surprised when the weather doesn't go to plan? It never goes to plan and we are never ever prepared for it. Very funny, but maybe slightly charming as well! Your outfit was perfect for the day. Still remaining stylish. Even with the rain.

  17. September 28, 2016 / 9:59 pm

    I really love that you chose something a little different for your outfit. So often the default for "dressing up" is a big dress and heels, so a great pair of cigarette pants and flats makes a fun (and practical) counterpoint to the froofery. Which I certainly love, don't get me wrong, but it's nice to see someone exercising another option.
    It sounds like the day was a lot of fun. Too bad about the cash situation, but hey, you'll find some great stuff next time. And I totally believe that you would get the cake that matches your outfit!

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