Friday, 30 September 2011

A Day in the Life at Twee Towers


7am - Little M comes bounding into Rhi's room to enthusiastically drag her out of bed, to get downstairs to cartoons and breakfast. He has little patience for the concept of 'waking up' - one must get out of bed NOW. He then toddles off down the hall to wake up Lola... she tries to get up early, but usually there needs to be a 2nd wakeup call at 8am.


7.15-8.30 - Rhi makes breakfast for Little M "Do you want toast?" - "Yeah!" ... "With phili?" - "YEAH!"... She'll stick the kettle on and brew some tea and take it up with a few slices of toast for Lola to entice her out of bed. It usually works. While Lola is beautifying herself and throwing on a dress as she leaves the house, Rhi sorts the lunches out... If its a Tuesday she'll chuck in some treats for Chris too (Tuesday is 'Treat Day' - much like Butterfields Sunday...) - we squeeze in some time to publish our posts for the day around this time too :)


8.40 - Lola makes her way to the office. Then its Rhi and M's turn to get ready. (Unless its a Friday when Rhi starts work at 9am too - MAD RUSH!)


9am-1pm - Rhi & Little M run errands, go out to play, or find some activities to do round Twee Towers (drawing, playing instruments, baking... or Little M's favourite Hobby 'Mess Making'!) before Rhi heads to work for the afternoon and M gets to hang out with his Granny or have lots of fun at nursery (making yet more mess wherever he is!)

lollies & screens

9-5 - Lola's Office... A drawer full of lollipops to aid difficult days! Annoyed with having to have so tabs many open at once whilst in the middle of a huge packaging project, she dabbled with having three screens for a bit, realised it was a bit excessive and went back to having two (as much as she enjoyed looking like she was in The Matrix)


Lola's desk decorations! Chris bought her the Mood Board Chart for her birthday last year - a flip chart of around 30 moods it's so much fun, allowing you to let the office know whether you're feeling ghetto fabulous, antisocial or emo. He modified it himself recently to include some more appropriate moods for Lauren such as 'Musical' (for when she indulges in a little lyrical improv) and 'Mmm morning pizza' (she was hungry!) She earned her 'I love Science' badge after exhausting Chris with questions about Space.


Chris & Lola proudly show exactly why they are employed to do Marketing & Graphic Design... bored of the calendar everyone in the office was given, they've taken it upon themselves to jazz theirs up month-by-month adding a little extra something to the landscapes & scenery. This is a selection of Lola's favourite months in which a badger got a Bowie makeover, Will Smith & Stevie Wonder hang out in the Australian outback, Reality TV stars have a Boat race in the rapids and a giant kangaroo takes them both in her pouch... to Coventry. They take commissions if you're interested...

5pm - Rhi usually makes it home first and makes a start on dinner... Our cajun cod with orange & tomato salad is a recurring favourite on the menu! Lola's home not long after to help finish up and get it on the table, where we have a catch up and share all the ideas we've come up with for the blog & collection throughout the day!

6pm - Dinner is cleared up, dishes are washed and the After Dinner Dance Parties begin. Such a good way to shake off a busy day and unwind, and we may have mentioned that its usually quite a good work out if we let Little M lead the moves!




8pm - Little M has kissed us good night and turned in for the evening, usually around 7. We arm ourselves with Lashings of Lavender Tea (because we still can't buy our beloved Rose Tea from the supermarket, hmph.) and head to the studio to get on with our collection, write our blog posts and design any new print ideas or work on customised orders.

11-12pm - We tear ourselves away (some nights anyway) for some much needed rest. We bid each other goodnight and usually snuggle down with a good book (even then we can't resist taking notes for an upcoming 'Literature Love'!) before catching some Zzz's ahead of another busy day...

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

New Prints // All you need is The Fab Four

Hey Lovelies,

We're still busy, busy, busy working on He Dressed in Black but we couldn't wait any longer to share our new prints...

We might have mentioned we're Beatles fans (did you read about 'The day we saw Sir Paul'? ... and of course the story behind our name) - so we designed a print to honour the very Fab Four as they're so very special to us, and we know so many feel the same, so we hope you like it.



Please, oh please, don't mention all the wonderful songs we've had to miss out, honestly it was Sophie's choice when it came to fitting everything in. We hope we've picked most of everyone's favourites though...

So go check out these new prints on our Etsy Shop :) - don't forget our Ex-Boyfriend series as well, if you want to get your fill of 60s Musical Legends we have this awesome Jagger Print for sale too!


We'll be releasing some more song title prints in the next few weeks, any requests for your favourite artists?

Enjoy the rest of your week sweets :)

Much love

R&L xx

Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Getting Wiggy With It...

Sometimes when we're crazy busy in the studio and getting a little bit stressed, we like to let our hair down...

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We're not loosing it... Honest! You know you're truly compatible friends when you both have an impressive wig collection...

Back to work then! So much to do, can't wait to share everything with you all!

Much love


ps. That tiny white kitty is called 'Boo' (or 'Princess Peekaboo' to use her full title) and she belongs to Rhi's sister, we were catsitting while she moved house. Miss that little ball of fluff!!

Monday, 26 September 2011

After Dinner Dance Party // The Sheffield Edition

Afterdinner copy

Oreyt! In honour of the few years I spent living in the wonderful city of Sheffield, at this week's After Dinner Dance Party I have been sharing a few of my favourite Sheffield ditties with Rhi & Little M!

... Although we could take a trip down memory lane from the time that Rhi came up to stay with me and got us up at silly o'clock to wait in town for hours in the freezing cold (after a somewhat heavy night out I hasten to add) to watch none other than McFly turn on the Christmas lights (not going to lie, I kinda enjoyed it in the end), I thought that I should probably show some of the other delights that the Steel City has to offer...

First up today amigos is Monkey Swallows The Universe with their stunning track 'Sheffield Shanty'. I was first introduced to this song when I heard it on a mix tape and fell in love with it at once, so pretty! Whilst the references to Sheffield landmarks & suburbs (most notably, the monstrous beaut that is The Arts Tower) may be lost on anyone that doesn't know Sheffield, for me it is the perfect ode to the City! Sadly the band has since disbanded but Nat Johnson's delicately, haunting vocals remain pretty dreamy on this Belle & Sebastian-esque acoustic dream...

To prove that some great things did come out of studying English Literature at Sheffield Uni; this is The Crookes with a wonderful stripped down version of 'Yes, Yes We're Magicians' from their Burberry Acoustic session. With tunes adorned with nostalgic tales from times gone by, it was hard to settle upon a choice for this post (check out 'Laundry Murder, 1922' - my personal fave from their album Chasing After Ghosts!) but this video is so beautifully shot!

Perhaps an obvious choice but no Sheffield orientated playlist would be complete without an appearance from Mr Richard Hawley with what is possibly the most delightful song in the world, 'Tonight The Streets Are Ours". Whilst, that lyric itself is enough to melt my heart, the song continues to give me butterflies listen after listen. To put it crudely; a crooner of the modern day Hawley has the ability to evoke sadness in the most uplifting of ways with angelic sounds & beautifully painted lyrics. In the same way that Roy Orbison and Scott Walker toyed with emotions through the juxtaposition between lyrical melancholy and melodic bliss, Hawley can transport you to the tragic and magical, simultaneously.

I think Little M enjoyed this one too... he's been seen running around Twee Towers channeling the spirit of Hawley with a 50s quiff (perfectly positioned bed hair he claims) and his momma's spectacles ever since! I think I'm fulfilling my God Mother duties sufficiently..

I'll have to pester Rhianna to reveal some of her faves from her time in London and share those with you sometime soon!

Much love,
L&R xx

Saturday, 24 September 2011

This week in the Studio // He's a Dedicated Follower of Fashion...


Hooray, it's the weekend! Hope you enjoyed the extra addition of some guest posts this week whilst we were busy in the studio! We are tremendously excited to reveal that the little side project that we've been working on is... dum dum duuuuuummm....

He Dressed in Black!

Without giving too much away - we're just about finished, annoyingly our key fabrics were held up in the post (merde!) but we decided to share the alternative fabrics we've sourced for trims and details...


We're working on a few pieces for some very special clientel... More will be revealed in due course (but we couldn't leave you hanging without even a glimpse! ;) )

We've been playing around with shapes, patterns and samples... and getting to do lots of research of impeccably dressed men (hardship...!)

The idea behind 'He Dressed in Black' - our menswear sideline came from one of our first celebratory nights out after we first moved into Twee Towers. We were up till the small hours scribbling in notebooks and sketching out designs - its soo exciting to see it finally come to fruition!

In the same vein of Carla's guest post, where she identified fashion's love affair with vintage styles and shapes, we realised that the men weren't as well catered for in this area. We've been harking back to Victorian Dandies, 20s Bright Young Things and 60s Sophisticats with the hopes of producing something a little niche and covetable for the boys!

We'll talk some more about our inspirations and goals for this collection shortly when we officially launch the pieces (yipeee!) and we promise we won't keep you waiting much longer! Don't worry girls, we're still working on the main collection too!

In the meantime, don't forget to check out our Etsy shop for cool, original prints from the 'I Like You' and 'Ex Boyfriend' ranges!

As always, we'll leave you with a nice tune to start your weekends with... the appropriately titled, 'Dedicated Follower of Fashion'... oh yes he is!

Much Love,
L&R xx

Friday, 23 September 2011

Twee Troubles // Memoirs of a Beatnik

Dear Diane Di Prima,

RE: Overindulgent Eroticism

We hasten to write this letter following the completion of your novel - Memoirs of a Beatnik. We were very much looking forward to writing a post for our Literature Love feature in a similar vein to last week's The Dud Avocado. Recently we've immersed ourselves in the romance and delectable charm of the 50s, we had high hopes that your book would glean insight into the other (slightly edgy, but not so perverse) side of the New York Beatnik scene...

One will admit that we may have been slightly naive at the outset. Our visions of Beatniks were originally formed from a slight obsession with watching Audrey Hepburn dance about in a tight black clothes in Funny Face, romanticising smokey clubs where 'spoken word' is the sound de jour and sexy bearded men philosophically pondered literature and the arts with a cigarette and brandy in hand.

However, instead we were horrified to find ourselves catapulted into a seedy underworld that was a million miles away from the poetry readings in cafés and arty parties we expected, from the very first page to the filthy end... The quip on the blurb about your book being 'unabashedly erotic' was quite the understatement. Nevertheless we persevered, reading with eyes half closed, barely able to look (yet, disturbingly riveted!) hoping that the plot would develop, that we'd get to some Beatniky clichés... We were comforted by the introduction of Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg - but alas, they went straight to getting down to some gritty fornication.

In short, once thinking upon ourselves as modern women, unperturbed by wanton obscenities - it seems we were looking through rose tinted spectacles all along... Reduced to flustered girlish giggles and bashful blushes your book detailed things that we weren't even aware were legal in the 50s... not even sure if they are even now to be honest!

Definitely not a book we'll be recommending to our mothers...

Yours shocked and a little disturbed,

R&L xx

Thursday, 22 September 2011

Guest Post // Sticky Labels: The Nature of Pirate Vinyl


Hey, this week we are treating you to another wonderful guest post courtesy of The Moons' bassist, the lovely Thomas Edison Warmsley. Unveiling the paradoxical nature of piracy within music and a little insight into Thundertree, a 1970s psychedelic band/album released on a pirate label!

Disclaimer: She Dressed in Black does not condone piracy in any way, shape or form and would definitely not encourage you to scout out some rare but incredibly brilliant piracy gems ;)


Sticky Labels - The Nature of Pirate Vinyl

God save EMI, why? because gutless, beatles-refusing, money-grabbing corporations create a thriving revolt of musical crime. While bludgeoning their chief executive Roger Faxon with a sharp orchestral instrument may seem like an obvious favourite, something potentially just as painful has happened to the major labels. Long before all music went digital, and popular torrent website Piratebay dwarfed HMVs advertising revenue, it's comforting to know that music piracy was as rife as it is today. Not only because it continues to make label giants look utterly stupid, but it has also kept afloat many lesser known and obscure releases from rock and roll past, earning many bands cult figure status.

Thundertree isn't a name most are familiar with, but their dayglo-painted masterpiece of an album cover is enough to make anyone snatch their hand and interrupt scouring the reliable 'rare psych' rack in a record store. Suspiciously wrapped in fresh film the record was branded with an odd looking label: Radioactive. Having never heard of this record label and remaining complacent about its peculiar 90s logo, research into Radioactive Records began.

“Radioactive is responsible for more than 200 unauthorized reissues of rare and collectable psychedelic records” was a common response from countless internet sources. The label ran by James Plummer is renowned for releasing obscure and unreleased bootlegs of artists such as Jimi Hendrix, Silver Apples, Fifty Foot Hose and then disappearing without trace. It turns out that this elusive Thundertree LP dating an original release from 1970, has since been hijacked and distributed by the pirate label, although you’ll be lucky to find a copy now, an original pressing on Roulette will cost you around £250. The process of stumbling across this grubby nugget of a record in an independent music shop is proof that, at least qualitatively, piracy works.

Thundertree - Thundertree


Minnesota probably isn’t renowned for being a native state of musical talent, although it is the birthplace of both Bob Dylan and the Andrews Sisters, but by the looks of it neither of them stuck around for long. But one band who may well have fallen into the crevice between 1969-1970 is this sole album release by Minneapolis collective Thundertree, a psych outfit marooned in the dull Midwest of the early 1970s.

While not much seems to be known about Thundertree, their founder and organist John Meisen appears to be the group's muso, and has an active history in the Minnesota music scene. When his previous band The Good Idea spilt in late 1968, Meisen recruited the writing skills of guitarist Bill Hallquist and on the back of a couple of promising demos Meisen signed his new project Thundertree to Roulette Records in 1969. It really was that simple to get a record deal in 1960s Minnesota.

Their self-titled debut features 12 tracks of psychedelic late-bloomers, where each could pass as an unearthed garage classic, which leaves you wondering what exactly the quintet were up to in the summer of 1966. But as a collective Thundertree achieves more than this, released in 1970 the album documents one of the more promising experimentations with psychedelia and progressive rock. Before you recoil with harrowing thoughts of tales about wizards and hammond organ episodes, the results are surprisingly good, making it a more sophisticated affair than some of their West coast peers.

Album opener Head Embers presents a stripped likeness to 13th Floor Elevators chordal stomp before eluding to a celestial coda, its refreshing to hear the fundamentals of progressive rock in such a primitive form. Followed by the tuneful At The Top of the Stairs, a convincing stab at psychedelic-pop and easily the album’s most radio-friendly track. Tinged with bristly organ and Meisen’s soulful English styled vocals, it is baffling how it managed to avoid the mainstream billboard in 1970. Meisen ponders “hanging on to a corner of a smile, I wonder why as the world goes by”, a critique of the mundane in the Midwest. Ballad Summertime Children and Dusty Road both appeal with originality, revealing a more progressive slant to their songwriting and a keen embellishment for ‘innovative’ studio techniques. With Meisen put in charge at the controls, the over-produced stereo organ on certain tracks quickly becomes an annoying gimmick, persistently darting from left to right - psychedelic quickly becomes psychotic.

Side B quickly redeems any lost credibility, with the majority of it taken up by 1225 a 16-minute medley that explores abstract themes over six tracks. While it indicates the hatchings of a progressive pomp nightmare, the six themes are strong enough to be songs in their own right. Things really begin to improve when the side B suite reaches Softly... a fantastical track brimming with originality, glistening orchestration and a nasty brass section that sounds like Miles Davis with a dreadful cold. The LP finale is a gleeful gospel soul rendition of The Sun Shines For Me, climaxing in an acapella round, leaving no stone of 1960s genre unturned, a fairly impressive album feat in just under 32 minutes.

Hope you enjoyed the little musical detour today!

Much love,
L&R xx

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Twee Towers Tour // Rhi's Bedroom

Twee Towers Tour

Last but not least - time for a quick looksie round Rhi's room before we bring the Twee Towers Tour to a close.

Pretty, bright and fresh was the look I was going for... I've always had such cluttered busy spaces in the past, so for a change I wanted something much more minimal and simple. With bright colours and striking graphics, with sweet girly touches from beautiful throws and pillows and colour pop frames... My room is by no means finished yet, a few touches need adding and furniture makeovers (pine chest and bedside stool beware, you'll be meeting my good friend 'paint brush' very soon...) - and I'm saving for an Eames style chair to replace the archaic wicker one I've had forever... but hope you enjoy having a little nosey anyway...


The Dressing table, I keep some of my future reads on here to keep me excited about what I've got coming up next. 500 Days of Summer is one of my favourite films so the alternative graphic movie poster was one of my favourite Etsy finds. I painted the geometric triangles in watercolours a few weeks ago when little M and I were having an art day....


Little M's Masterpiece... I'm not one of those Mama's who constantly brags and boasts about every single little thing their little one does... BUT, M is quite clearly an artistic genius...


My beloved feature wall, I've never seen a prettier shade of orange. Makes me so happy every time I walk into my room. (say "Hello" to the boss, chilling on the end of my bed there!)


Do you want to hear something slightly tragic? Ever since I left home at 18 I've been on a mission to find the perfect bedding, the search proved fruitless for nearly 5 years, until at long last, this summer I found the most beautiful white bedding with crochet detail in H&M! Dreamy! Etsy'd Chevron cushions break up the girlyness a little and the coral throw was a lucky TK Maxx score!


The obligatory chevron print as runs the theme in Twee Towers. Alongside it a quote from my favourite song of all time, 'America' by Simon and Garfunkel and I photoshopped a classic Bridget Riley Op-Art piece from the 60s to tie in with the colours of the other prints.


There are always books on my bedside stool, whatever my latest read is. I'm starting The Great Gatsby tonight. Ooh and I love my Laurence Llewelyn Bowen lampshade, I bought it about 6 years ago but its always tied into my homes no matter how they've been decorated!


I'm responsible for about 99% of the decorative frames dotted about Twee Towers... Can't.stop.buying.them! The 2 pictures on display, pride of place on my window sill are of Little M at just 4 weeks old, dressed as a leopard (N'aw!) and one of my favourite pictures of my Daddy & I from when I was little. The sill also houses an array of trinkets I've collected over the years.

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I was lucky enough to bagsy the room with the ensuite bathroom, I've not done anything exciting with it yet to be honest, just hung a picture from a Moomins book (love!) and put all my prettiest cosmetics and perfumes out on display!

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All that's left to show you is a sneaky peak in my closets! I have 2 and since ticking off the colour-coordination goal on our AW list I now have 2 incredibly organised 'Pastels and Lights' and 'Darks and Brights' closets. So I can easily choose from which ever hue happens to be taking my fancy that day.

Well... That's all for the Twee Towers Tours folks. Have you enjoyed them? We hope you have! Now that you've had a sneaky peak at all the nooks and cranny's we'll be starting some new features... and sharing some DIYs once while we try and add all those little finishing touches!

Much love sweets.

R&L xx
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