English Rose

Something I’ve always wanted but never gotten round to looking for: a vintage bicycle. This post is partly a massive thank you to my boyfriend, who has made that little dream come true by putting in the effort to find me this amazing, quirky and rustic bike; it’s definitely one of the best presents I’ve ever been lucky enough to receive. He spent hours researching and googling and bargaining to get me the one that would suit me most, picked it up and delivered it on my birthday – and I have to say, he got it pretty spot on.

It’s a Westwood Classic City Heritage bike, and riding around on it (which has taken a bit of getting used to: there’s only one gear – part of the overall charm) makes me feel like a cameo role in Call The Midwife, and the ease of tucking things into my basket gets me wondering why driving has been my preferred method of transport for so long! I’ll totally be using her for longer journeys soon, maybe to work and back, but first I need some practise getting up and down hills and honing my braking technique… I can see Maggie and me having our fair share of adventures in the future, though.

The creamy pastel colour is gorgeous and so traditional, I think, and really compliments the brown leather stitching of the handlebars and saddle; the craftsmanship and attention to detail is beautiful and so well maintained considering the age of the bike! However I guess that’s another perk of vintage and second hand items: they truly are timeless and generally brilliant quality. The basket is, of course, my favourite aspect – who needs an on-trend basket bag when you can have one attached to your bike?!

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DRESS Urban Outfitters | SHOES Cow Vintage | FLEECE Calvin Klein (from a charity shop)

In keeping with Maggie’s retro vibes, I always feel emboldened to wear less contemporary outfits and embrace my love for vintage. This dress is actually from Urban Outfitters but has such a rich, unique pattern and subtle colouring that pairs with its gorgeous button down style to give an old-fashioned effect. It’s so easy to throw on, especially on a hot summers’ day (unlike this one, hence the fleece) and can be styled with accessories that bring it into a modern wardrobe or alternatively matched with items which transform it into a 1940s tea dress. I usually go for the latter.

These shoes are a work of art from Cow Vintage, my go-to store for an incredible vintage find for a reasonable price without having to sift through a crazy amount of unorganised clothes. They’re super comfortable and such a simple way of adding an old-timey twist to dresses or faded jeans. Here the shoes work their magic with my tea dress, enhanced by my lovely blue necklace (raided from my Mum’s jewellery box) to create just the ensemble I wanted to embody. My fleece is a major Red Cross bargain, and I chuck it over everything, you can’t go wrong with a bit of old school CK. It’s warm and cosy (even if it is bobbled from overwashing) and features a cute silver fish bone zip. In this case it slips some edge over the outfit while the navy fits hand in hand with the vintage colour scheme.

These photos were taken on Saturday at Aberyscir Fun Day! When back at home I live in a rural Welsh village where the community is very strong and friendly; every year the three villages closest to each other come together for a day of drinking, sports and a barbecue on a chosen field and it’s always a success. I love city life but it always humbles me to return to a place where there is such a kind atmosphere of welcome and acceptance, and you are surrounded by breathtaking countryside.

I named this post ‘English Rose’ as Jack refers to me as this because of my fair hair, freckles and extremely pale skin (I normally get a verse of the song by The Jam, too). I secretly quite like it and am proud of my roots, and feel that Maggie contributes to this image of a traditional vintage Brit!

Thanks so much for reading!

Lily x

Author: lilyroseking

20, blogger and journalism student at Nottingham Trent University. Music lover, fashion admirer and travel dreamer. Vintage and charity shopping, collecting records and drinking beer is what I do best.

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