I find it beyond fascinating how many interesting people you can encounter on social media and also how lovely it is to make new friends who enjoy many of the same things that you do. Elizabeth Kirkpatrick aka The Vintage Contessa is exactly one of those people and I wanted to share her story with you! I asked her to do The nenasnotes Questionnaire and she immediately agreed. The following is Part 1 of her responses (she writes her fabulous blog, http://thevintagecontessa.net/ in ALL CAPS and has asked me to keep “ALL CAPS” that she has used for her answers!) I know you will be fascinated with her stories and be charmed and intrigued with her breathtakingly gorgeous photos….enjoy!
nenasnotes QUESTION….WHEN READING YOUR BLOG POSTS I NOTED THAT YOU HAVE HAD MANY INCARNATIONS….WHICH HAS BEEN YOUR FAVORITE AND WHY
INCARNATIONS? That is an interesting observation, but I do believe you are correct! As a child I wanted to be a BALLERINA or a VET. That did not come to fruition. Then I worked in FASHION RETAIL Then Wholesale, The Gucci Accessory Collection. We sold to the Specialty stores and Department stores. That is how I met my husband of 36 years. We worked for a woman who had the distribution for the United States and Canada. Then married in Florence, Italy in 1986. Then I became a MOTHER to TWO BEAUTIFUL SONS. Then an Antique/Vintage Collector which became a store front. After they grew up a bit I opened a shop that sold antiques and vintage for 12 years. Last came the BLOG :THEVINTAGECONTESSA.NET. Then Instagram hit! I found people who had similar passions as myself. Plus I was OVER 50 so The ADVANCED STLE movement enticed me! I thought what ARI SETH COHEN https://www.advanced.style was doing was FANTASTIC. To answer your question about which one was my favorite I would say being a MOTHER and being married to THE ITALIAN in SAN MINIATO AL MONTE in Florence,Italy. Can I have TWO PLEASE? A Nena’s Note….yes, you can!
As time goes by I get MORE and More ECCENTRIC.For example when the Boys were younger I would wear long skirts with sweatshirts mind you the skirts I found in the consignment shops were usually TAFFETA!
The shoes were always running shoesAs a young woman and still today I get comments like “Where are you going all dressed up?”And I think to myself I am NOT DRESSED UP at all. I get stopped often in the Produce section of the grocery store a lot by older men saying thank you for dressing up……..you remind be of days gone by.
WHEN WAS YOUR FIRST IMPRESSION OF YOUR TALENT? TALENT! I wouldn’t say I have talent, but I do have a good eye whether it be clothing, interiors or gardens. My “talent” for clothing was born from looking at VOQUE and HARPERS BAZAAR and TOWN & COUNTRY at a young age. I did DREAM of being a model or SHOWGIRL like a ROCKETTE as I loved the HEADWEAR. Feathers & Rhinestones were HEAVEN to me! I should have been in theater! I would have adored CECIL BEATON.I really have Never Changed from that young girl. Most of my DREAMS have been fulfilled.
WHEN DID YOU KNOW YOU HAD “MADE IT”EXPLAIN…I do not think “I HAVE MADE IT YET” I keep plugging along. Once my sons left I was a LOST SOUL.I have kept doing what I love. The garden the clothing and collecting stuff. I did make it in THE CLOSET DEPARTMENT however! As we had a very small closet we shared. I kept complaining about how I needed more space! My ITALIAN built an addition to the 1940’s house for all my clothes.
HOW DID YOUR ORIGINAL PASSION BRING YOU TO WHERE YOU ARE NOW…AND WHEN DID YOU DEVELOP YOUR UNIQUE STYLE
MY MOTHER! I have always LOVED antiques. I would shop with my MOTHER at a very young age. My first collections were OLD KEYS & BOTTLES. I still have an old milk bottle from those days and a set of old keys that have faces on them. If I remember correctly they were $12.00. I thought about INTERIOR DESIGN but the drawing scared me. I remember when TONY DUQUETTE lived down the street from us in San Francisco. Since then I have met many decorators at Book signings, Anita Campell, Timothy Corrigan, Charlotte Moss, Paul Wiseman Princess Michael of Kent and Hutton Wilkinson. I actually was invited to DAWNRIDGE for lunch with his wife as he was out of town. That was an experience I will never forget! I still love ballet, animals and clothing. I am still SHOPPING when most people are CLEANING out! I have found “MY PEOPLE” on BLOG’s and INSTAGRAM who rock MY WORLD. Who actually “GET ME!” Another Nena’s Note, I profiled Hutton, awhile ago, and also did a review on his book DAWNRIDGE!
TALK A BIT ABOUT YOUR “MENAGERIE” I LOVE ANIMALS. I always wanted a farm. My mother was from INDIANA and would tell me about the runt of the litter sleeping by the stove in the kitchen when she was growing up. By age ten I had a chicken that turned into a rooster! My Father was not an animal person, however somehow we always had a cat. No dogs. I had rabbits outside and was ALWAYS building a BARN. Today I have a dog and a cat who is missing at the moment and a TEA CUP pig that lives in THE HOUSE! He is THE BEST ANIMAL I have ever owned. They are very clean. They are very smart. He learned the doggie door in ONE DAY! He eats very little to be honest like 1/3 of a cup of piggy pellets with a fruit or vegetable! Twice a day. The vegetables MUST BE COOKED! I also save the old bread and soak it. Of course when he goes OUTSIDE it must be warm enough and NO RAIN he will graze in the garden! He learned the first year NOT TO EAT MAMMA’s ROSES! He understands” NO” very well! He has his second dinner with us at the table at night. A bite of salad or vegetable NO MEAT! He has his own FORK…SILVER ANTIQUE which is placed on a KINFE REST so we do not get it confused with OURS! He comes when I call! He also sprints around the house and has NEVER broken a thing!MY house is PACKED with STUFF! Sometimes the cat and the dog and the pig all dine with us at the table waiting their turn! Somehow he knows when dinner is over as he heads to bed or wants a TUMMY RUB!
As he heads to bed in the living room I ask for a kiss and he turns his head to oblige me! I get the NOSE as the mouth is un-reachable!