All photos by me, Melissa Davies.
The Gatsby Summer Afternoon, one of the most beautiful Bay Area events of the year, is coming up on September 11. Last year was my second time attending the reenactment event and I was honored to have the incredibly fabulous Tziporah Salamon as my date!
Attending the Gatsby, as it is affectionately known, is like stepping into a vintage postcard. (Almost like a wax museum with a pulse.) Little picnic parties come together on the grounds of the beautifully preserved Dunsmuir Hellman House to make up a historically accurate tableau.
The "rules" around what you wear, ride, and even the utensils that you eat with can feel pretty overwhelming. Especially if you've never been before. However in practice, these are more like helpful suggestions. In reality, the vintage police are not going to arrest you for the scrap of plastic wrap that you used to cover your plate of deviled eggs.
The yearly event is a fundraiser for the Art Deco Society California so there are plenty of people eager to show off their preservationist spoils. As it's well into its fortieth decade, the picnic has become a multi-generational affair with families making an annual pilgrimage from all over California.
As for me, I happened to be about seven months pregnant at the time. Let me tell you, those drop-waist dresses are not very forgiving to the pregnant figure. It was still fun to see friends from near and far all dressed up in their vintage best.
Naturally there was a lot of beautiful bike style to admire. I had a fun and frenzied hour
running waddling around trying to capture it all!
In addition to vintage fashion, elaborate picnic pavilions are encouraged. Vintage bicycles are often featured as part of the total look.
An absolutely stunning vintage Raleigh.
Lots of bikes out our picnic spot under the bay Laurels. You can spot my vintage-style Raleigh and my Bambeauty.
Charlie and Kevin make a pretty picture.
Lovely details in Charlie's ensemble. I adore the white gloves and the matching mustard yellow parasol and slippers.
Dapper Kevin pulled off a vintage look.
Admiring Kevin's ability to carry anything by bike.
The Ice Cream Tricycle seller is a regular at the Gatsby and is often good for a charmingly anachronistic photo opp.
A boater hat makes for a summery look.
A classic newsboy cap. We're looking forward to making more helmet covers in this style!
Cargo bike envy.
Bike trick or just a well-timed photo?
Her outfits are so beautifully detailed!