Last weekend, I got the chance to enjoy a rare day out with my wonderful family and indulge my vintage obsession even further.
Vintage By The Sea is an annual event, held in the seaside town of Morecambe, Lancashire. Filled to the brim with vintage stalls, live performances, good food, fashion, stunning vintage vehicles and much more, I was truly in my element!
On Saturday morning, Adam and I headed over to Lancaster with my Dad and Uncle to meet up with the rest of our clan, then made our way to Morecambe. The weather went from bad to worse as the morning progressed, with harsh sideways rain and wind gracing us and putting an end to my carefully pin-curled hairstyle immediately! Luckily, we’re a family of troopers (and hardened Northerners…) so we didn’t allow the weather have a big impact on our day by the seaside!
Our first port of call was The Platform; a beautiful entertainment venue situated in a restored Edwardian railway station on the Morecambe promenade. We found a table big enough to host us all and enjoyed a coffee whilst seeing what was on offer that day. I spotted the awesome Mary Jane Baxter, a lady that I’d been lucky enough to meet at Fashion On The Ration earlier this year. She was back with her turban classes and enviable vintage crafting camper van! After watching an entertaining performance by the lovely ladies below, we walked across the road to the iconic Midland Hotel.
This Art-Deco building is incredibly popular with celebrities and us mere mortals alike. The striking staircase is hard to miss as you enter the reception; it’s spiral design and grand artwork by the renowned sculptor and engraver, Eric Gill, were mesmerising. We had booked ourselves a seat in the Sun Terrace restaurant to indulge in a spot of authentic 1930s afternoon tea.
Overlooking the seafront, the grand setting was the ideal place to enjoy this historical British treat. Cake stands stacked with freshly baked cakes, scones, pastries, jam, clotted cream and finger sandwiches were brought over to our table, alongside a selection of teas and filter coffee.
Afternoon tea is a strange one; to look at, all of the tiny portions look less than substantial to fill you up properly however, after two hours of snacking, we were all more than done! The scones were incredibly light and yes, we had a debate over whether it should be jam or cream first! (I’m a ‘jam first’ kind of girl personally)
After food, we mooched around the pop up stalls and tents for a spot of vintage shopping. I may have bought a gorgeous teal polka dot tea dress to wear for my Manchester hen night out and my sister picked up a stunning teal green circle skirt – great minds think alike!
We spotted Morecambe-born fashion designer and Red or Dead co-founder Wayne Hemmingway browsing the rails and looking very dapper, so we were in good company. I’m attending one of his talks in a few weeks at the Imperial War Museum, all about sustainable fashion. An interesting topic, taking lessons from the second world war so if you get the chance, go and check it out.
With the weather really taking a turn for the worst at this point, we dived back over to The Platform and got to see some incredible dancing. I was blessed with two left feet but as I watched the guys and gals impeccable dance moves with envy, it inspired me to finally be brave and look into taking Lindy Hop classes myself; something that I’ve been wanting to do for years – watch this space!
My sister and I decided to try our hand at a spot of flower making whilst we were there. I opted for a simple posy of gypsophila, pink roses and thistles and she created a gorgeous posy of orange flowers, gypsophila and daisies. I was actually pleasantly surprised by the result and these beauties now adorn my fireplace at home. I’ll be making the flower arrangements myself for our wedding reception next month so the inspiration and extra practice certainly came in handy!
A trip to the British seaside wouldn’t have been complete without a sneaky trip to the arcades, would it? After a short walk by the seafront, we sold our souls (aka exchanged a fiver…) for a pot of 2ps and hit the penny machines. The nostalgia made me smile and we enjoyed an hour of old school family fun together. Despite feeding the grab machines in the hopes of winning a Wookie stuffed toy, we came away empty handed but happy.
After a pit stop for more coffee, we took a peek inside the breathtakingly beautiful Winter Gardens theatre before heading home. This Grade II listed building had more dancing and vintage shopping on offer and with it’s stained glass and original decor, the eye-catching setting made me want to learn more about the place. I am hoping to go back again one day and explore it in more detail.
I will be adding the next Vintage By The Sea event to my dairy and cannot wait to do it all again next year! Have attended this event in the past? I’d love to see your comments below.