About Joyatri

Avid thrifter and vintage clothes wearer. Love 1960s and early 1970s styles. Partial to Art Nouveau, Pre-Raphaelite, Victorian, Renaissance and Medieval art. Former art historian. Current packrat. On a continual quest for good-looking, comfortable vegan shoes. Bhangra dancer since 2002. Fascinated by all things Indian. Vegan and animal advocate. 

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Words I like:

"She was dressed, as usual, in an odd assortment of clothes, most of which had belonged to other people." 

Excellent Women by Barbara Pym (1913-1980)



“I said "Somebody should do something about that." Then I realized I am somebody.”

 Lily Tomlin




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Entries in Rags (3)


The Groupies

I’m in London and have been so busy with all that London has to offer (as well as helping my boyfriend set up his new flat), that I haven’t had time to post.

Last Thursday, I attended the private view of “The Groupies,” an exhibition of photos by Baron Wolman. When photographing rock stars in the late 1960s, Wolman was struck by the effort some of the women who hung around backstage put into their look. So, he photographed these women and they were featured in the February 1969 issue of Rolling Stone magazine. As far as fashion, the photos showed the ‘groupies and other women’ sporting painted-on eyelashes, boas and vintage dresses.

Sally Mann, © Baron Wolman

Lacy, © Baron Wolman 

The GTOs (Girls Together Outrageously – a group organized by Frank Zappa), © Baron Wolman

 I was able to meet Baron, he’s a genial guy and he seemed pleased when I mentioned reading every issue of his magazine, Rags.

Mid 1960s mini-dress and 1970s moon face pendant, both owned for decades. Red, yellow and blue bead necklace, Boomerang, $2. Vintage Italian magazine scarf, Goodwill, $2. Late 1960s velvet bag from Pakistan, eBay. Restricted Barricade boot, Berk’s Shoes, discounted. I wore the vintage ‘arts & culture’ dress and got several compliments on it (oddly, all from men). 1970s velvet cape, Goodwill. $10.00.The photograph of Karen wearing a vintage 1930s dress that was used on the February 1969 issue of Rolling Stone magazine.

After the exhibition A. and I went to the London Vegan Drinks event at Tibits, a restaurant with an amazing vegetarian and vegan buffet. It is such a pleasure to be given so many choices, including for dessert (their sticky toffee cake is particularly yummy). And with nearly 100 in attendance, there were lots of great folks to chat with.

Given the number of compliments I received on my dress and cape, I'm linking up to the other visible women on Not Dead Yet Style's Visible Monday.


Seeing stars (again)

Once again, I painted a pair of thrifted shoes using Jacquard Lumiere and Neopaque paints. They were white.

And now they are gray with a touch of purple added (a color that my friend calls 'mouse scrotum' – I don’t want to know how she came up with this description). Since I can’t leave well enough alone and have an addiction to stars, each got a large purple star on them, bravely painted free-hand.

As with my other shoe-painting projects, I took inspiration from late 1960s-early 1970s shoes (previous projects include clogs, sandals, bowling shoes, and spectator shoes).

Of course the best star shoes, actually boots, are featured in the counter-culture ‘fashion’ magazine, Rags. Started by Baron Wolman, photo editor of Rolling Stone magazine in the late 1960s, it was published from June 1970 to July 1971 in San Francisco. It recognized that the coolest clothes were coming from the street and influencing designers and not the other way around.

Rags was a treasure trove of editorials and information on the latest boutiques (for example, where to get Moroccan caftans, antique military uniforms and the latest hippie fashion from London) as well as popular culture and do-it-yourself clothing and crafts. I was lucky enough to have access to all 13 issues recently and took lots of photos that I’d love to share, but can't without the publisher’s permission. Luckily, many of the articles are published on the Rags Lives! blog. This is the article on shoe-painting that got me started and it features the star-decorated boots. 

In a complete coincidence, I just happened upon an announcement of the opening of "The Groupies," an exhibition of Wolman’s photos, taking place at a gallery in London. My boyfriend A. and I will be at the private view on Thursday where Wolman will be in attendance.

Linking to Faith, Hope and Charity Shopping’s Ta-Dah! Tuesday.

I just got rid of the captcha on the comments. Sorry, I didn't realize it was there.


Does anyone dye anymore?

I was looking through some late 1960s and early 1970s issues of Seventeen magazine recently. Two things struck me. 1) There were lots of ads for sewing patterns, sewing machines, and fabrics, with an emphasis on how you can be unique and make your own looks. 2) The latter part of each issue was devoted to wedding articles and ads for engagement rings, hope chests, and dinnerware.

I glanced at current issues of Seventeen in the library recently and neither sewing or weddings are featured anymore. I’m not bemoaning the lack of attention on marriage for teen-agers, but the now the ads are focused on branded clothing and fitting in.

Not only sewing but dyeing was a big deal. Here are some ads for Rit and other dyes. It’s interesting that Rit paired up with other companies to co-market their products.

From Seventeen magazine, April, 1968Here Ked’s white sneakers are advertised with a sneaker painting kit. It seems that there were even sneaker painting contests according to this newspaper ad from 1968.

From Seventeen magazine, April, 1968From Seventeen magazine, February, 1970 “Rit Invents Electric Satin.” How to dye fabric for sewing clothes with Simplicity patterns (pattern numbers are given that top).

From Seventeen Magazine, June, 197Hot Stuff Rit Liquid Dye ad for hot pants and tank tops you and he dye together. The opposite page has complete instructions.

From Seventeen magazine, August, 1971Ad to “tie-dye your own original fashions.” This ad and the column on the opposite page have instructions for tie-dying a sweater, hat, windbreaker, skirt, and scarf. That’s a lot to get into one ad!

From Seventeen magazine, May 1973Two years later, after you’ve ditched the boyfriend, you can invite the whole gang over to tie-dye.

From Ingenue magazine, April , 1970“So you’re out to change the world. We can do it together” ad for Lady Esquire Instant Shoe Coloring, which came in 45 colors. This ad features an entry form for a contest for the “most original and workable idea.” Winner received a $3000 wardrobe by Pierre Cardin, New York.

Here’s a great article on shoe make-overs from the July, 1970 counterculture fashion magazine Rags. I think I need to make those star shoes.

I’m also inspired by bag and shoe dyeing projects on Vintage Vixen and Two Butterflies. I wonder what kind of paint/dye works best on non-leather shoes/bags. Anyone know?