The Brooklands Vintage Festival 2019

Having attended the annual Brooklands ‘1940s Relived’ event for the last four years (see last year’s blog), we were delighted with our invitation to be involved in the new ‘Vintage Festival’ this year.

Photo by Simon Burgess

With such an historic site as Brooklands, where the history spans over a century, it is the perfect site for a vintage event, particularly at an institution where the combination of cars and fashion can be celebrated.

After many years as a 1940s focused occasion, Brooklands decided to expand the May event to incorporate a wider range of eras, spanning the 1940s-1960s, and as part of the new festival the museum was looking for two friendly, glamorous scouts to look for contestants for the afternoons ‘Best Dressed’ competition!

Needless to say, we were thrilled to be asked, and, as real fans of this event over the years, felt privileged to be involved.

As part of the build-up, we were given the opportunity to have the run of the museum to take some promotional shots to advertise the festival and we immediately called Simon Burgess, who has photographed us at the event before (and who is also so much fun to be with!)

So, on a beautifully sunny day in March, the three of us arrived at the museum laden with cases of outfits and props ready to shoot some images that would help advertise the event. Together with Marketing Director Paul Stewart, we set up some great shots in a variety of locations (including the gorgeous Barbara Cartland room, vintage cars and aircraft) and generally had the best day ever exploring this fantastic museum!

Photo shoot coffee break with Brooklands Marketing Director Paul Stewart and photographer Simon Burgess
Our glamorous ‘dressing room’!
Some of the fabulous locations we used at Brooklands Museum

Here’s a selection of our favourite shots from the day…

With the promotional photos done, we turned our attention to the rather crucial matter of what the two of us were to wear on the day! The pressure! We were going to be scouting for ‘Best Dressed’ so we had to feel well dressed ourselves.

As luck would have it we were offered a wonderful collaboration with the talented seamstress and knitter, Lyndsey of @vintagesoul_handmade, and so were able to commission unique outfits for the day that used original vintage patterns.  Lara went for a 1940s colour block dress and Emma chose a beautiful 1930s two piece blouse and skirt.

Our beautiful outfits from original vintage patterns by @vintagesoul_handmade
Photo by Adrian @imageperfectphotos

Lyndsey did a beautiful job and we can highly recommend her if there is a vintage outfit you would like made.

As the event drew nearer, we were excited to see the first official piece of ‘Vintage Tourist’ press when our photo featured in the ‘Surrey Advertiser’ newspaper as well as websites mentioning the event!

Simon’s photo of us gracing the pages of the Surrey Advertiser!

So the day itself arrived with a promising weather forecast and we arrived bright and early ready to ‘scout’.

Ready to ‘scout’!

As always, the stalls at Brooklands are some of the best of all the events we have attended, and while the first visitors were arriving we had an early shop – with Emma finding the perfect 1930s bag for her outfit!

Emma’s sneaky early purchase – a beautiful 1930s bag

The broadening of vintage eras meant that there were some fabulous 1950s cars on display as well as some beautiful outfits.  Much to our delight there were some stunning 1930s ensembles and, reassuringly, plenty of 1940s fashion too.  It was easy to find ‘Best Dressed’ contestants – the Brooklands crowd are always well dressed!

It was a wonderfully social day for us and we chatted endlessly with friends we have made on the vintage scene over the last two years. This is definitely an event where we feel right at home.  We took our scouting duties seriously but also found time to shoot some snaps with Simon and another great photographer, Adrian of @imageperfectphotos (we had lots of fun with these two!)

Spotting some potential ‘Best Dressed’ contestants from the balcony of the members bar
Posing with Adrian’s vintage camera

And then to business…

Backstage just before the ‘Best Dressed’ competition

The ‘Best Dressed’ line up assembled and, surprisingly, we ended up both presenting and judging the competition.  Luckily we’re both able to ham things up and smile when needed – and there was lots of that!

But with two worthy winners selected, we were able to ‘clock off’ and enjoy a gin and the rest of the event.

The fabulously dressed winners!

It was the most amazing day and for two gals, who when they attended separately 4 years ago never thought they’d get the chance to actually be a part of it, it was incredibly special.

With our boss for the day, Paul Stewart

Our friendship and our joint interests have brought us the most amazing adventures and this was one of the best so far!

‘Congratulating’ our Best Dressed winner James!

We can’t wait for our next event!

Until next time…

Lots of love

The VTs xxx

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