The Fifties Fair 2016

Since first attending a few years ago with a pram in tow, the Fifties Fair has become a regular event on our family calendar. Few occasions can capture the sense of a mid century social atmosphere quite like the Fifties Fair, thanks in no small part to the extraordinary venue of Harry Seidler’s modernist masterpiece, Rose Seidler House, completed in 1950, and the bands, dancers, classic cars, stall holders and authentic vintage on show each year.

This year it was a pleasure to meet Queensland rockers The Hi-Boys (and to be on the receiving end of a slightly awkward dedication of ‘I Just Want To Make Love To You’), and dance to the tunes of That Redhead and DJs Limpin’ Jimmy and Singin’ Kitten. A ‘Tara’s Pick’ award was introduced for the first time, and I was honoured to join regular judges Lorraine Foster, owner of The Vintage Clothing Shop (established in 1974), and Curator Joanna Nicholas in helping to judge the best dressed. It was lovely to meet so many of the attendees and entrants, but narrowing it down to one pick? Near impossible.

Among a throng of beautifully dressed entrants, Miss Polly Polka-Dot took out the coveted female best-dressed, described by Lorraine as ‘Perfect’ in her 1950s dress (and gorgeous to boot, it must be said), and Ross Pitman was named best-dressed male. I had the honour of choosing my own ‘Tara’s Pick’, handing the prize to Sybil Edwards and Nick Papageorgiou (pictured at top), who later cut up the dance floor. What a marvellous couple!

From inspecting the fine vintage fashions of the best dressed men and women, to chatting on stage about nostalgia and sustainability, here are some of our images from the day, taken by my husband, photographer, poet and writer Berndt Sellheim:

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Read more about the 2016 Fifties Fair, with images of all the winners, at Sydney Living Museums.

(*Apologies, as I am still waiting on a confirmation of the full names of the Best Dressed Couple and Best Dressed Family winners!)

 

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