by Dana Gornitzki
Very few ladies in our modern age have time to be pampered, let alone enjoy a decadent beauty and grooming ritual like our counterparts of yesteryear.
Yet a bijou event in London is proving that despite our hectic schedules, donning beautiful hair and makeup and taking care of oneself (while sipping a gin & tonic and eating cake) in the good company of others is most enjoyable and a very lovely treat.
No wonder TART is described as an ultimate afternoon of self indulgence…
Hosted at the decadent 40 Winks by the dandyesque David Carter, pin-up queen Fleur de Guerre and Vintage Secret’s Naomi Thompson, TART is described as “a simmering orgy of fun, fashion and frivolity aimed at ladies who want to put some old fashioned glamour back in to their lives.”
The dapper David Carter elaborates: “TART is about style and glamour with a vintage twist. It’s indulgent, girly and set in a cosy atmosphere.”
The promise is fulfilled, and then some. Decadence doesn’t even begin to describe it, and it’s no wonder that each month the event is a complete sellout.
TART pulls all of the elements together of food, clothes, hair and makeup — from being greeted at the door with sweet pink slippers to enjoying tea and the most beautiful treats lovingly created by the adorable and inspired Angel Adoree of Vintage Patisserie.
Next up is vintage styling by none other than the lovely Naomi Thompson of Vintage Secret who not only knows how to custom pick an outfit or accessory for a lady, but can also indulge (and delight) you with little historical tidbits about the vintage piece you’ll surely be tempted to buy.
One floor up is the beautiful cult vintage diarist Fleur de Guerre who gives a sweet talk about 40s glamour. Fleur is charming and funny, and provides the most useful and - not to mention - practical tips for ladies today who are very short on time. Top tips: pick a few simple hair styles, get your hands on a hair curler, and always wear red lipstick.
But since we’re at TART, there’s no need to worry about hair and makeup as there’s a small team of beauty gurus from Benefit to transform guests into glamour-pusses. Meow.
We’re not finished yet. TART sprinkles each room with tempting clothing and accessories from both well known and emerging designers including Katie Halford’s corsets and girdles of What Katie Did, millinery from UglyLovely, and eco couture jewellery from Seraglia.
An added bonus to what is surely a perfect afternoon is the possibility of being crowned the ‘Queen of Tarts’: a title awarded to the lady who has undergone the biggest transformation. And the reward? “The winner will be expected to look and feel wonderful, and perform spontaneous acts of kindness for a whole month.”
How very genteel…
“It’s an ultimate afternoon of girly pampering,” says Laura Young who has come with a group of girlfriends to celebrate her 30th birthday. “We love the fashion, the drinks, and the makeup. It’s the quintessential British afternoon of fun with some gin & tonic on the side.”
40 winks is so lush and cosy, one only wishes they didn’t have to leave…A very good reason to come back next month.
The next TART takes place at 40 Winks on April 17 and is £80 per head including makeover, treats and libations. For more information and future dates: send an email to Reservations@40winks.org or call 0207 790 0259