Thursday, January 27, 2011

Spring Palette Challege

I know you all are expecting pictures of my pants, but alas, I think they are in need of some more tweeking. Once the initial excitement wore off, I noticed that they were a bit big, despite the fact that I made them one size smaller than my hip measurement. I will be putting pictures on my Flickr if anyone thinks they may be of some assistance.

Anyways, Colette Patterns are hosting a Spring Palette Challenge where you choose a color palette and make a mini wardrobe for yourself out of it. I wasn't planning on doing it, but after Brittany of Va-Voom Vintage posted today about working the color wheel in your wardrobe, I was inspired by a color combo she suggested. So here is my Spring Palette.

The three colors that inspired me were mint green, dark gray and lilac. I don't own anything that is mint green, but I think it's such a fun color! My other three colors are pale yellow, a light orange and pink. With these extra colors, I can sneak my Swing Dress into this challenge too. teeheehee. I'll probably add a couple other pieces to my list, but I haven't gotten that far yet.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Busy busy busy

I've been super busy sewing all day to get my Wearing History Smooth Sailing Pants finished. And they are! :) Yay! Alas, it is late so there are not pictures for you today. But I do have pictures of my fabric for Casey's Sew-along!

The print is a cotton lawn that I actually found in the juvenile apparel fabric section, right next to the dinosaur print. I thought looked a bit retro and very spring! The pink is going to be used for the ties/midsection. Anyways, now that I have my fabric and I've finished my pants I can get started on this sew-along. Yay!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Making a blouse can be 'Smooth Sailing'

I finished the Wearing History Smooth Sailing blouse yesterday! Woot! And I wore it today for the first day of school. I thought the whole apple bit was appropriate. Plus it was gray and dreary and I needed something to perk myself up.


Here it is. I did have to wear a cami underneath as my fabric was a bit see-through and the shirt's meant to be worn with high waisted pants, not modern hip-huggers.


I did have a couple issues post-button drama. I had to take the shoulders in because the sleeve started an inch or so down my arm. It looked really wonky, especially since the sleeve was poofy. The arm band was also tight on my arm, so I had to let it out a bit. But, other than that, it was quite a stress-free process.

Buttons and pockets and tucks, oh my!

I love the pockets! Just darling!


I decided to not use any more rick rack. I think it would have been a bit much. Next, I'm going to tackle the pants! (Which I am planning on doing a couple muslins for!)

Friday, January 14, 2011

Manic Panic Product Review

As many of you know, I went red head last month and have been using Manic Panic semi-permanent hair color cream in Flaming between colors (every 2.5 weeks or so) to bump up my color. My base color was dyed by a professional over my natural hair color.

My virgin hair.

Color and ease of application:

I applied the color on my own head with a paint brush. Considering that I'd never done my own hair color before, it wasn't that hard. I dipped right out of the jar, which worked pretty well. The product wasn't runny, and didn't spray every where. I did drip on the counter once and it did stain, so be sure to cover your work area well.

I kept the product in for 2-2.5 hours, as I was dying over dark hair and Ashley of Lisa Freemont Street had left hers in for longer and not fried her hair. I rinsed my hair in my kitchen sink the first time and in the tub the second time I dyed it. Neither one was stained. The jar says not to get on your scalp, and while it didn't irritate my scalp, where I slopped on my scalp, it was stained (but went away after a few washes) and was a bit difficult to get the product off my scalp. I didn't do a good enough job getting the product out the first time and accidentally got some dye on one of my husband's favorite shirt. So, if you do get some on your scalp, be sure to work it off during the rinse!

When I blow dried my hair, the color was great! It certainly didn't match the colors on the website of people who had prebleached their hair, but it did come out noticeably stronger than the professional color. The color did not come out completely even, but I did apply it myself and I noticed that the lighting greatly affected how the color looked, so I'm sure that had something to do with it.

The second dye turned out great too, but it did not take on my roots at all. I was hoping that it would make my roots a bit less noticeable, but not luck. So, I'd definitely suggest a base red or bleach for people with hair as dark as mine using this product. It also wasn't as strong of a color, but I think that's probably due to the base color fading significantly between Manic Panic applications.

It didn't photograph very well, but I don't have great lighting in my house, so that may have had something to do with it. I also think that not photographing well is just the nature of red dye over dark hair.

4.5/5 great product!

My Manic Panic-ed hair, dyed two days ago. Has not been washed since I dyed it.

Longevity and Maintenance:

I washed my hair every other day under cold water with shampoo for color treated hair and used dry shampoo on the off days. I also used a color sealing serum on days I washed. The color lasted about 2 weeks, although it did fade a bit during that period. I definitely don't recommend washing your hair everyday if you use this product. It took a bit of getting used to, but my hair doesn't get oily so fast anymore.

My biggest problem with this product is that it ran. Water didn't really affect it much, but as soon as I put the shampoo in, my water turned all rust colored from the dye. This lasted as long as the color was good (about 2 weeks). I had to blow dry my hair every night to keep from getting color all over my towels/pillowcases/bed. At home, I used dark towels, so it wasn't noticeable after the first couple washes, but while on vacation, I had to use the stereotypical white hotel towels to dry off with. I felt pretty bad not knowing if the color would come out. :/ I dreaded going in the pool. While it was a bit chilly in FL for the pool, I did visit the hot tub and had to put my hair up so it wouldn't get wet.

I love my showers and hate blow drying, so this was quite a bit of a bummer for me.

3.5/5 It took a lot of maintenance and bled. I know it's a semi-permanent color, but I really did expect it to stop changing the color of my shower water much sooner. Be prepared to change up your shower routine and add some mileage to your blow dryer.

Post Manic Panic Hair towards the end of two weeks.

Effects on my hair:

In her hair dye video, Ashley of Lisa Freemont Street claimed that using Manic Panic improved the condition of her hair. I was a bit skeptical. Could a hair dye improve the condition of my hair?

The professional coloring did damage my hair quite a bit. Now, I have naturally really fine, soft hair, so while there was a noticeable coarsening, it was by no means fried. I did used a professional leave in conditioner treatment twice between the professional color and Manic Panic. It helped a bit. The Manic Panic, however, helped out a lot! My hair is not back to 100% but my hair was much nicer and the product definitely helped more than the professional leave in conditioner.

5/5 I'm not sure how much it helps bleach damaged hair, but I was very impressed with what it did to my hair.

Post professional dye hair. (not this orange in real life)

My impressions of the company:

I didn't need to call customer service, but I was pretty impressed with the packaging. Inside the box was a catalog complete with coupons. There was also a slip where two separate people had checked off that the correct color had been shipped. That impressed me. The best customer service is the one that isn't needed.

The website was also pretty easy to use. There were a lot of pictures and testimonials, which was great for the Manic Panic virgin. I ordered online

5/5 Seems like people there care.

Manic Panic-ed hair dyed two days ago. You can see my roots and where I got dye on my scalp. I've not washed it yet so the scalp should be clear after I shower today. The splotches where I dripped on my face went away after washing my face.

Price and Value:

The Manic Panic "Classic" Cream Formula Hair Color was $12, which I think is a great value. I did thing the shipping was a little steep ($6.95), but that's a flat rate and probably covers shipping from NYC to LA and I'm only in little old Ohio. I was able to get two dyes out of one jar, which was great and made it a much better deal for me. Longer hair probably will only be able to get one dye per jar. If you can get Manic Panic in a store near you and avoid shipping, go you.

4.5/5 Avoid shipping costs and get 5/5!


A great product. It's a commitment, especially if you have dark hair or want to go for a more outlandish color, but if you're ready for the commitment, Manic Panic is the dye for you.


This is an unsolicited review. I was not paid nor did I receive free or discounted merchandise in return for this review. It's just my honest opinion.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Button Quandry

So, I've been working on the Wearing History Smooth Sailing Blouse, which has been going quite well..... except that now it's time to do the buttons. Yeah.... I've never put a button in before and I don't have a fancy button foot. And I won't be getting one any time soon, as my sewing machine manufacturer has changed how the feet attach to the machine. :( I've been looking for tutorials online, but I'm just super nervous. I think I'll need to practice a lot.

Anyone have tips/suggestions/a great tutorial???? My mother-in-law has a button foot for her machine, but I really want to learn how to do this myself.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Sewing and Flickr!

So, I've been sewing a bit. I decided to start on Wearing History's Smooth Sailing Blouse. I decided to go with a fancy pocket. It took a bit of time (and trial and error) to get it right, so I didn't get much further than that yesterday. I dyed my hair again today, but maybe I'll get a bit more sewing in later.


The front, back, and front of the blouse.


Those dratted pockets! But they are pretty cute!


Topstiching! I think I'd look just darling in a contrasting color on a simpler pattern or solid fabric.

And I'm now on Flickr! There's not much on there just at the moment, but I'm still figuring it out. Feel free to add me as a contact!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Wardrobe Refashion!

So, I'm officially back home from vacation, but more on that later. I've decided to plunge into another adventure, the Wardrobe Refashion! It was started by a lovely lady out of Australia as an effort to promote wardrobe changes by abstaining from purchasing new garments for a period of time. Seeing as I have major issues not only with clothes shopping, but impulsive buying. So, I'm finally bucking down and doing it! Here's the rules:

Yikes! This will be interesting!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Faux Betty Bangs

So, in keeping with my New Year's resolution #3, here is the hairstyle from last week's Youtube of the Week.

Pardon my weird face. My eyes looked goofy in all of the pictures. I hate taking pictures of myself.

Here's the bangs by themselves. Looks pretty cute. I wore this style out shopping and it held up pretty well.... that is until I started trying on clothes. It's not really designed to hold up to shirts going on and off all day. But, other than that, it lasted quite long.

Ashley of Lisa Freemont Street used a hair flower to cover her bobby pins and I choose to do the same. I think that with more practice, I could figure out how to hide the pins underneath the rest of my hair, but I didn't have time to fool with it. I'll definitely be doing this style again. It was super easy and made me feel like I had my Betty bangs again! The hair flower I'm wearing is another Belle Blossom.

Vacation has been going great! I'm in Palm Coast FL, which is located between St. Augustine and Daytona Beach. The weather is quite fabulous and the hubby and I are quite taken with the area. The resort has no wifi, so this is likely to be my last post until I return home.