Chattanooga Choo Choo

Chattanooga is all about trains. Whether you’d like to ride in one, tour one or even sleep overnight in one, you can do it all in this hip little Tennessee city. Growing up in my shore town in New Jersey, I loved taking the train along the coast into New York City. My husband, a train enthusiast,  even convinced me to take an Amtrak sleeper train from Virginia to Florida.

The scene for this shoot is the Chattanooga Choo Choo a former train terminal turned museum, shopping, dining destination and hotel. Guests can stay in traditional rooms or call it a night in their very own private rail car.

I’m wearing a modern Ralph Lauren shirt dress, but the wide skirt and fitted waist takes me back to classic 1950’s styles. I love the crisp put-together feel of a button down shirt, but dislike the struggle of keeping it tucked in. Behold, the shirt dress, the perfect solution!


My blue and white stone 1950s costume earrings were a fun find at a special estate sale. When my husband and I first moved to Florida, we planned to buy a historic home downtown. Our offer on my dream 1920’s home was unsuccessful after a bidding war. When the home had an estate sale, I jumped at the chance to buy a tray of costume earrings, some hand-painted Japanese parasols, a huge collections of 1930’s green cherry glass and a pair of carved 1880’s twin beds. I may not have gotten the house, but I feel like I have some pieces of its magic. For a similar style, check out Madame Mathilde, a unique jewelry designer who updates vintages pieces into modern eye catching designs 

Visit Madame Mathilde >>

For all of my floral fans, the Chattanooga Choo Choo boasts a beautiful rose garden. As a little girl, I used to check my hometown newspaper, hoping a local florist would post an advertisement for a child floral shop helper. While I never became a professional florist, I love making floral arrangements at home. I especially love roses, which is probably why the only perfume I have ever worn is Bulgari Rose I dislike perfumes with a complex chemically smell and find that this rose scent feels very natural. Just a spritz or two and you’re set for some glamorous train travel!

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Alison Hetherington

For the modern girl who loves everything vintage.

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