Saturday 8 March 2008

Cinders, you shall go the ball!

Well a dance actually but yes, I am really going to a proper dance, just like the ones in the James Herriot novels I dreamt of, mournfully, as teenager because I truly thought that age had passed.

But no, it seems so many people still hanker after the era of getting properly dolled up, practicing their finest moves and waiting in anxious anticipation for an..."excuse me, may have this dance", that a Spring Dance, (40s dress encouraged - hurrah!) is being held the Saturday after Easter at the Guildhall - and I'm going!

Let me tell you, I am physically giddy with expectation, there is only one slight problem. Neither me or my date ...(Woody - can you believe it! I think he thinks he owes me one for being the strong-ish woman behind the comedy night).... can dance! Oh dear.

I'm actually going for a few dance lessons before the big night, although Woody is completely adamant that "he's not dancing", but I have a sneaky plan. For now I am acting very innocently and keep exclaiming "oooh neither will I, too embarrassing, I just want to drink in the atmosphere etc" and then I'll ply him with a couple of lager shandies and, fingers crossed, we might manage an awkward shuffle around the outer reaches of the dancefloor.
For years I've wanted to learn to dance but never plucked up the courage. I bought some big band music a while ago though and its completely infectious, my feet won't keep still. I suppose Strictly Come Dancing has made me feel like it could be really an option for someone, as inactive as me, to get up and give dancing a whirl (shamefully my only real exercise is the 3/4 mile walk to school, then back, a few times a week).
(very glamorous but a touch scary? think I'll go for something a bit more human, like letting my face move!)

I'm probably most excited about the dolling up bit, not much of a chance for that thesedays. I've already done a few charity shop trawls for a frock (something hopefully floral or with polka dots), I've got an ebay bid in for some shoes, found some silk stockings complete with stripe (goodness knows who will come across this blog now I've posted that!) and I'm planning on snaffling Eechie's new, miracle tongs to perfect the perfect waves.

Do you think my nostalgia trip has gone a bit too far? I'm reading The Land Girls by Angela Huth at the moment and I'm completely immersed in it and the evocative descriptions of Britain at war. I hope I don't come across as flippant or as if I'm trying to glamorise an awful time, but again, its really helping to put me in touch with my grandparents heyday, which is lovely because I do miss them so much.

So, I promise to post pictures after the event and will report on my first dance class on Tuesday. Wish me lots and lots of luck - I have two, very definite, left feet! All tips/advice on clothes, make-up and the vital dancing all very gratefully received!

***Thank you to everyone for all you lovely comments. I appreciate them all so very much. Your kind words, advice and encouragement mean the world to me. Thank you for saying hello, for returning and for always making me smile.***


Aqeela said...

Ive just come across your blog and i love it, ive just read the whole page! im also a country living fan and i wanted that countryside book as soon as i saw it in the magazine too! Your house looks lovely, i cant wait to read more of your blogs,
Lindsay x

Sal said...

Oh what fun!I look forward to reading about your dance classes..good luck!Sal;-)

Carol said...

It is always a pleasure to pop in and see you..........
Well I am looking forward to these pictures.......sound like great fun to me. I am sure Woody will dance - just needs a little nudge!
Carol xx

gayle said...

As well as dance lessons, practice mournful longing looks at the dancefloor accompanied by big sighs. Also say nonchalantly that you hear a group of american airforce guys are going to be there looking for a sweetheart! Worth a try! Good to catch up.

Kathy said...

Hi Steph, How wonderful, I would love to go to a dance like that! I too love reading about the war - have you read Night Watch by Sarah Walters? As a child I adored We'll Meet Again about the american GIs based in Norfolk and last Christmas my hubbie purchased the complete box set for me, bliss!! Funnily enough I am pretty sure it was filmed in West Malling, Kent which has been mentioned in Molly Cupcake's last blog! Really looking forward to seeing your pics from the dance. Best wishes, Kathyx

Faye 'Country Chic' said...

Oh Steph, that sounds fantastic! You will have such a lovely time, the dressing up and make up will be great fun too. Cant wait for the pictures.

Cowboys and Custard Mercantile said...

How could you possibly go too far with Nostalgia.. never!!!
I love it and wallow in it! I have been to very similar dances in the past and loved every minute of them even though I am the world's worst at dancing.. You will be swept off your feet.. and Woody.. by the whole atmosphere.. Can't wait to hear how you get on and see the pics.. Have fun Steph!


tess said...

oh it sounds wonderful, can't wait to see your outfit, if you don't get the silk stockings then you'll have to draw a line down your legs with an eyeliner!

Claire said...

how brill, I bet your soooo excited, you will have to take pics of you and Woody to show how fantastic you look. I would love to go to a dance like that, my hubbie has no interest in dancing at all, I used to go Salsa dancing which was great fun!
That pic of Judy Garland is great, I used to work for Max Factor when I was a teenager and used to sell Pancake and Creme Puff to the old dears like no tomorrow.....claire xx

julia said...

Sounds fabulous, you lucky thing. What a great idea to have a 40's theme, can't wait to see the pics!Julia x

Just Original said...

The Land Girls film is one of my favourites, it's probably so different from the book, but I just love the dance hall bit, the music, dancing & flirting is fantastic! Its just so very romantic.

I am so jealous, good luck with the dance practice!

Anonymous said...

Oh you lucky thing Steph! Can't wait to read the follow up. Don't worry about the dancing, it will come to you both.
Carol x

mollycupcakes said...

Wow honey it sounds like heaven to me, a real dance. You are so lucky I wish I could come to :(
I just love the old fashion war time dress, pearl harbour outfits are just amazing, have you seen it? well worth a look. Lots of red lips, stockings and gorgoeus dresses and skirts.
Good luck with the dance classes, you will have so much fun. Dancing is one of my exercises, great fun with the girls lol
Catherine x

prettyshabby said...

Hi Steph..these do's are brilliant, we used to go to them on a regular basis either a 40s or 50s night but Havent been for years and years, there was talent scout or whatever they are called at one once and my friend got a part in a film dancing as an extra! I met My husband at one in Skegness of all places!The dressing up part is the bit I loved..some people look amazing and the jitterbuggers are incredible.
I must admit I have 2 left feet, Pete tried to teach me to jive but to no avail, so I used to just watch in awre.
Hope you have a great evening..can't wait to see the pictures!

ps. if you are doing 40s rolled hair (victory rolls) backcomb the sections slightly before you roll them..makes them easier to work with.For waves heated rollers are definately the best,
check this lady out on youtube..she'll show you!

mollycupcakes said...
they have some nice vintage clothes on this site, you might find something on here for the dance.
have fun hun.

Catherine x

Garden Girl said...

How FABULOUS! Can I come?! What a great excuse to go mad with lots of face powder and red lipstick. You should check out Vintage Amethysts' blog (the link is on my blog) as a few weeks ago she put a link on there to a vintage clothing website which would give you some ideas.Lots of petticoats needed, I feel! I would love to be able to dance (I do dance incredibly well after several glasses of wine, but sadly not so well sober)Hope you have a wondeful time, can't wait to see th photos!!xx

Ragged Roses said...

Hello Steph, hope you have a wonderful time. I know exactly how you feel I would have loved to have gone to one of those dances, just getting glammed up would be wonderful. We're going to a big party on Friday night, unfortunately for M it's a salsa party, complete with teacher, and something tells me I'l be dancing round my handbag!!! Enjoy it all and hope you find your dress

Lucy Bloom said...

Hi Steph, how absolutely fantastic, hope we'll get to see some pics of you in your 40s finery!
Lucy x

Carol said...

How was the dance?
Carol xxx

Summer by the sea said...

OOh what fun! - Exciting things like that never happen near me! - Like you, I cannot dance, but I would really look forward to dressing the part etc - I hope you have a really great night and I'll be calling back to see the photos! - Natalie x

Alchamillamolly said...

Hi its me in my dusty messy bay windowed semi! its in an unimaginable mess and we bought this one cos it didnt need much doing to it!! Anyway am searching ebay for a dresser and remembered your painted dresser. Am torn between a waxed finish not to paint or a varnishy one to paint. Was yous varnished? Did you prime it first? Or did you put paint straight on it? The painted look is the one I want perhaps with a wooden countertop. Am waiting for a table to come its a waxed top pine table with F&B cooking apple green base and legs and 4 buttermilky chairs so thought I would paint the dresser perhaps a shade lighter than cooking apple green or cream. Anyway love you Mum's day pics! and good luck at the 'hop'!! Catherine