Sunday, November 8, 2015

Fare Thee Well, October: Looking Back On My Fall Vacation

The human chessboard at the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire

Every year I set aside much needed vacation time from my job during the week of Halloween. It is, after all, my favorite time of the year. Like I need a special day on the calendar to celebrate candy and horror movies! But it's far more than that. It's the change of the seasons where the summer air turns crisp and cool, and the fall palette of colors paints everything in hues of red, orange, and gold. 

You perhaps already read about my first day of vacation spent exploring the Shofuso Japanese House and Garden in Fairmount Park. That was a lovely afternoon. The very next day, my newly-engaged sister and her fiancé, my boyfriend and I, my best friend and her family all went to the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire. 

The royal joust! 

I hadn't been to the Ren Faire in years, and had almost forgotten how much fun it could be exploring the sights and sounds of the 1600s. With so much to see and do, we made an entire day of watching a human chess match, the royal hypnotist, Celtic singers and dancers, and of course the jousting. 

And to celebrate our triumphant return to the Renaissance, this year we decided to dress up.

A Victorian-goth lady and her loyal knight.

And though I thrifted 90% of my costume, I have to admit that my favorite part of the ensemble was that tiny Victorian clip-on hat. I mean, how cute is that?! And while we're not exactly in the same time period, my love for Victorian mourning inspired the costume. And James?  Well he just wanted to be a knight, which fit the Faire nicely. Maybe I'm a time-traveling Victorian witch? Ah oh well!

Here is my head-to-toe look.

Wig: Already owned 
Shoes: Already owned
Jewelry: Already owned
Sheer Black Blouse: $3.50, Goodwill
Black Dress: $6.00, Impact Fashion Outlet
Vintage Parasol: $5, Bryn Athyn Thrift Shop
Fingerless Lace Gloves: $10, Spirit Halloween
Victorian Hat: $10, Spirit Halloween

Me and Sir Goofyface. 

The grand finale of the night at the Ultimate Joust. 

I'm already mentally making plans for our return trip next year. The costumes, the crafts, the food and vendors---it was wonderful. If you find yourself in the area, all vintage enthusiasts, self-proclaimed nerds and Renaissance aficionados should make the trip to the PA Renaissance Faire, which is in season from August-October. And while I might have a slight bias due to my love of all things October, I do recommend going in the fall. There is an added magic in the air, and the fall scenery could't be more beautiful. And... of course, costumes of all kinds are welcome during Halloween weekend. 

A tractor ride to the apple orchard.

And speaking of Halloween, this year I thought it would be fun for James and I to go apple-picking at Styer Orchard. Being a New Jerseyan, he had never been to the beautiful family farm. I make it a point to go every year during my fall vacation. 

A perfect setting for Samhain. 

And I'm sure you can see why. In addition to scoring 4 pounds of golden delicious and staymen-winesap apples, a few miniature pumpkins, and Indian corn all for under $13...the scenery is breathtaking. 

It seemed fitting that I started my vacation with the serene surroundings of the Shofuso House and ended them here---a lovely full circle week. Of course it wouldn't be a real vacation without a few trips to the thrift store, which I found even more fashion to feature in future Secondhand Style posts. And in a sad sort of running joke---it wouldn't be a vacation without a medical setback or two. James spent much of the week sick with a sinus infection from Hell, and I was taken to urgent care only to be told that the sudden  intense pain I had is possibly nerve damage in my right arm. Typical! But we didn't let all that get us too bogged down. 

My new-to-me ultra-mod mug and saucer, $4 from 2nd Avenue Thrift.

And at the end of the night, after giving out buckets and buckets of Halloween candy, we came home where I had myself a big cup of french vanilla coffee while blogging my little heart out.

It had been a big week---full of traditional Japanese culture, the ultimate vintage experience of the Renaissance Faire, a trot through nature, and of course some serious thrift shopping. I suppose that's why this post was such long time coming---that and I've been working nonstop on additional photos and content, all while contending with new pain medication that's making me sorta loopy. But nonetheless I'm glad I had my week off to celebrate my favorite time of the year, and I'm glad that I got to celebrate it with James. 

Oh! And speaking of celebrating, I'd like to thank all of you that participated in the Vintage & Craft Giveaway to the celebrate the 5th blogiversary of Let's Go Thrifting. It truly has been a wonderful five years, and I'm so thankful for the readership and all of the kind words. The winner of the Vintage & Craft giveaway was...Jennifer C! Congratulations, Jennifer.  And thank you all for making Let's Go Thrifting the secondhand community that it has become. 

I hope that all of you had a wonderful October, and a magical Halloween. 
I'd love to hear all about what made your month of October special.

How are you celebrating the fall? 

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Vanessa said...

Wish we had fall foliage and events here. We have a little, but not much. It's still 85 degrees outside! :D

Jackie Jardine said...

Oh that could ruin my fall festivities, Van. Too hot for my liking.

<3 Jackie