Friday, April 29, 2011

Becoming a Princess

There have been a lot of lovely posts about Kate's dress, which I loooooove! I'll send interested parties over to Gertie's post, which is really great. All of this princess excitement has gotten me in the mood to wear a tiara.

I have three.

I'll start with the small one. I've had this since high school when I bought it to wear to prom. It's from Claire's and not the best quality but it's pretty cute. Great for the beginner princess. It's currently displayed in my living room with the slipper below on a matching sconce.

This one my husband bought me on our honeymoon in Disney world! I also got a mini glass slipper! I wore it every day in Disney. It did get broken though. :(

This one is my favorite! I got to be a princess on my wedding day too. It's a lovely 14k gold plated tiara from Princess Bride Tiaras. I highly reccommend them if you are looking for a tiara. They are even more gorgeous in person!

Did you break out your tiara today?

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Wardrobe Refashion in Review: Made by Me

Since I'm approaching the end of my Wardrobe Refashion (t-minus 11 days and counting!) I thought I'd do some reflection on the whole experience. I've not been very good at marking everything Wardrobe Refashion related, but I'll try to collect everything in a few posts as I'm thinking it's going to take more than one. Today I wanted to walk through the pieces I've made and think about how much of a success they are.

1. Wearing History Smooth Sailing Blouse

I love this blouse! It's so cute! The sleeve cuffs are a bit tight but not too tight that I can't wear it. I'm planning on making another blouse from this pattern soon.

2. Dress to Skirt Refashion

I have not worn this yet. :( I think it's just not my style anymore. Plus I don't really have any tops to wear with it! (Thanks to all who responded to my Blouse Quest post. I think I'm going to go with the Pendrell Blouse and have some fun with it later this summer.)

3. Wearing History Smooth Sailing Pants

These were super easy to make! The main issue is they ended up a bit baggy in the hip/backside area so I had to take the zipper out and take them in. Voila! Pants that fit. Then I lost 10 lbs (woot!) and they are baggy again. So I'm thinking that I'm going to wait till I'm off my weight loss kick and then fit them. Summers coming soon anyways, right?

4. McCall 5438 (My first vintage pattern!)

I learned a ton from making this pattern-pattern tracing, adjusting a single size pattern to fit my body, and self-covered buttons! It's really cute, although I think it ended up being a bit short. I sort of feel like a vintage ice skater in it. I may try it again in a different fabric.

5. Sew Serendipity Coat

I love this coat and wear it all the time now that it's not 20 out. I always get tons of compliments on it. :) I'm toying with lining it since it looks a bit messy on the inside.

6. Sew Serendipity skirt

Love this skirt! Again, I need to get a top to wear with it. Too many of my tops don't look good with skirts. :/ I actually have fabric already to make another version. This may be my go to skirt pattern.

7. 1940's Swing Dress

*sigh* I still don't know how to fix this dress. I'm seriously considering taking the top off and making it a skirt. I don't think I'll be able to fix it. It's been hanging wit my other unfinished projects since I took it off after this photo shoot. Must do better muslins! Lesson learned.

8. Runway Show outfit

I liked this outfit a lot when I made it, but it too has a couple of issues that keep me from wearing it often. The skirt has a sheen that makes it a bit dressy for day. I did a zig zag finish on the blouse and it came out rather itchy. I plan on doing some bias binding on the seams now that I know how to do it properly.

9. *in progress* Peacock Dress

This project is going great! I've been trying to focus on doing things correctly rather than just doing things quickly. It's paying off really well here. Just need to finish the hem and make a belt.

10. *in progress* Bow Blouse

Don't think I've ever blogged about this one as I don't have any photos of it, but this was my first experience sewing with a knit and it's coming along ok. Some of the seams look a bit wonky, but not that bad. It needs buttons but I keep forgetting to pick some up.

11. *in progress* Butterfly Dress

No pictures of this either, but I'm making Simplicity 2549 for this week's Sew Weekly Challenge. I'd love to finish it tonight but I'll probably have to work on it some more tomorrow. I had to make significant changes to the top of this pattern and I didn't make a muslin so fingers crossed that it works! I have most of the bodice complete and so far so good.

13 pieces in 4 months! Woot! I definitely did a lot of sewing these last four months and learned tons! Hopefully the next four months will have even more successes!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Youtube of the Week: Dreamy Dior

Dior is always drool worthy. I stumbled upon this black and white clip of some early 50s Dior and just had to share!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Trying out the golden rule

No, not that one! Today, I got my nerd side out and decided to apply the golden ratio to my peacock ensemble:


Steph from 3 Hours Past the Edge of the World did this with one of her sewing projects and I thought I'd give it a whirl. So, here's how I figured this out.

I measured from the shoulder to the hem of the top giving me a=22 inches. Then I plugged into the formula a/b=1.618 and got b=13.6 inches. b is the measurement from the hem of the top to the hem of the skirt, not the measurement from the waist of the skirt to the hem of the skirt. We only care about the parts that are visible. Plugging a and b into the other equation a+b/a, I got 1.618 back. That means the math was done correctly.

If you're not sure what should be a and what should be b, try swapping the values. If you assign 22 inches to b, you get a=35.6 inches (which is almost 3 feet!). Since 22 inches is still the top measurement, that leaves a=35.6 inches for the visible length of the skirt. As I'm only 5'4", that's not going to work.

Then I pinned the skirt up to see how I liked the length. (Please ignore the wonky side.) The bottom arrow indicates about where the unhemmed skirt hits me. It's loooooong! And I'm short. While I'm not a huge fan of my knees, I do like the length.

I'm really excited about this outfit! I just have to add a hook and eye to the skirt and do the hem! I'm also considering making a self fabric belt (see the line on the labeled image). The top is a bit loose from the waist to the hip so a belt will help show off my waist. I love my waist and feel odd (fat...) when it's not highlighted.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter Bonnet

While most people choose to wear something extra special on Easter, I opted to stick with an old favorite-my brown and pink circle skirt. I've been wearing it a lot actually. Today I jazzed it up with my new beaded collar and hat.

My husband and I went to his parents' house after church today for dinner and an Easter egg hunt for the my niece and nephew. I took the opportunity to snap a few pictures in their backyard to take advantage of their lovely landscaping.

I tried out a new hairstyle from Lauren Rennells' book and it turned out quite well for a first go. I'm also sporting a new coral lipstick I picked up this weekend. I like it. :)

Check out my hat! It came out very nicely! I made it from this Wearing History pattern. It was actually pretty simple to make. I did have to get a bit creative when pressing the seams since I don't have a tailor's ham. (I've added that to my list of things to sew and already tracked down a tutorial.) I did add a strip to the front of the hat so I could attach different Belle Blossoms as the mood it me. The one I am wearing is January's Blossom of the Month.

I ended up wearing my beaded collar backwards as the overall impression was that it looked a bit odd the other way round. Eh. I'm not one for being super historically accurate anyways.

Blogging Mamas Who Rock

Happy Easter everyone! May is just around the corner and that means Mother's Day. I'm not a mom, but there are lots of great blogging gals out there who are. In honor of these ladies, I'm hosting a series of interviews with 'Blogging Mamas Who Rock' to learn what inspires them and how they manage to stay fabulous while being great moms. The first interview is set to air a week from today, so stick around! You won't want to miss these!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

I love a good antique store!

There is an antique store in a small town out near my church and I've been wanting to go for a while, but it's always closed on Sunday when I'm up at church. Today, my husband and I were out there getting some work done and I snatched the opportunity to hit the antique store after we were finished. They had tons of cute tea cups. I'd love to start collecting vintage tea cups but, alas, there is no place to store them in my tiny apartment.

So here is what I did take home with me!

A little over 2 yds of this lovely landscape print on a knit. I think it may be Venice because of the gondolas but it's cute none the less.

I also found this piece of the same type of material but with a Chinese print. It's a bit larger than the other piece. And they were only $4 each!

I also found this lovely vintage beaded collar! The tag says it was handmade in Japan. It was missing the hook part of the hook and eye and the pearly coating has come off of most of the outer row of beads, but adding a hook was easy and it still looks lovely. Someone loved this very much. And now I do! I thought it was worth the $5. It will be making its debut tomorrow along with my new hat! Can't wait to share that with you!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Easter break equals time to get sewing

Life has been pretty crazy the last couple of days. I didn't have class Thursday or Friday and I only have one class on Wednesday so I've pretty much had the last three days off of school. Wednesday was a takin' care of business type day. I got a lot of administrative type things done (blah) and got a good portion of my homework done. I always like to get my homework done when I'm in school mode so I can enjoy the rest of my break! But Thursday was all sewing all day!

The top of my peacock outfit is finished! I also conquered the skirt zipper and cut and started to assemble the skirt lining. It'll definitely be finished in time. Woot! I also decided on the spur of the moment to make a hat for Easter. I knew I wasn't going to have enough time to make a dress but I'd just gotten two hat patterns from Wearing History so I was like why not? Most of the patterns called for some sort of special thing I didn't have in my stash, but I found one that had definite possibility. It got finished today and it is awesome! I can't believe I made a hat!

Today has been full of a lot of technical drama with our internet. It's all fixed now though. Our wireless router pooped out and we had to buy a new one. :( That's why there's no exciting pictures today. (And I needed to start an English paper. Second to last one ever!)

On the bright side, I still have the whole weekend to enjoy plus another day off of school on Monday! There will be lots more sewing. Next up on the project list is another Smooth Sailing Blouse and a cherry print circle skirt.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

The Middy Haircut

Last week I got a Middy haircut and today a whipped up a video to show you how it looks unstyled. Enjoy!


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The Blouse Quest

Now that I'm actually paying attention to my wardrobe, I'm beginning to notice some holes. I am in desperate need of some plain blouses in neutral colors to act as a base for some of my more fun skirts. I have a lot of blouses that are printed, too small, look weird tucked in, are the odd colors or are just a bit too immodest for my current taste. So I'm asking for your help to find a great blouse pattern so I can whip up some nice tops.

My criteria are:

1) Not button up the front and no zippers!
2) Nothing too complicated looking
3) A modest neckline
4) Will look great in solids
5) No strapless/spaghetti straps

Some things I'd like to have but are not necessary:

1) Vintage inspired or repro
2) Can be made in lots of types of fabrics

Do you have any go to blouse patterns? I'd love to see any you've made so feel free to leave a link (or two).

Youtube of the Week: Red Lips

This weeks youtube of the week is a glamorous Hollywood red lip look! It's perfect for special occasions or days you just feel like a diva.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Hey, Mama, Welcome to the 60s

I don't usually list the 60s as a decade I use for fashion inspiration, but lately I've been exploring the early 60s (and perhaps watching too much Hairspray) and finding quite a few lovelies.

Look at this lovely blue flora dress with self-fabric belt! I'd love a peak at the crinolines she's wearing.

Check out the variety of necklines and sleeves on these three dresses.

What a great floral print! Can you imagine a better dress for a classy garden party?

I love the 'stripes' on this skirt made by alternating the direction of the gingham.

So Jackie! I love Jackie's sense of style. The boxy style doesn't go so great with my body type but I love to look.

This pattern has lots of options! I love the sharp v necklines.

I'm still not crazy about 60s hair, but that may be because my hair does not like to get that kind of volume, even with ridiculous amounts of hairspray. Are you a fan of 60s fashion? Have you been expanding your fashion inspiration lately?

Gettin' Organized Giveaway Results

Thanks to all of you who entered! The winner chosen by random number generator is #4 Bettieboo999! Email me at girlwiththestarspangledheart[at]gmail[dot]com to collect your prize!

What kinds of things would you guys like to see in future giveaways?

Friday, April 15, 2011

Why can't we all play nice?

There has been a bit of a buzz around the blogsphere about people in the vintage scene being rude, mean and judgmental of others. What is up with that? It is never ok to make rude comments about someone's body. Come on, ladies! We all have things about ourselves that we'd like to change. Why do we feel the need to make fun of others? We all know how hurtful it is. Unless it's a case where a person is endangering their health, let's all keep our mouths shut!

It is also important to give our fellow bloggers the benefit of the doubt. We've all had moments where we say something and it doesn't come out right or people don't take it the way we meant it. And it's so hard on the internet to get those context clues that are all in our speech. I know that all of the bloggers that I read are very kind and caring people. Sure, there are some duds out there who will be insulting and mean but most of us don't set out to hurt or offend people. If you really feel that a blogger has said something offensive, consider contacting them in private or just stop following them if they bother you that much. And remember, we are all entitled to our own opinion so maybe we can just agree to disagree.

Now that I've covered respecting other's bodies and minds, let's talk about fashion. I've never seen it, but I have heard stories about vintage lovers putting down others because they don't dress purely enough-whether by not being historically 'accurate' enough or by having a rockabilly side. First off, those of us who choose to wear vintage, choose to dress outside the social norm. We all want people to accept our sense of style and not make fun of us. It's important for all of us to extend this respect to others, even if we really don't care for their style. Secondly, there is a right and wrong way to tell someone they are wearing a 30s dress and a 50s hat. We all were beginners at one point and time. Hopefully, we remember this and take an attitude of sharing knowledge about something we are passionate about rather than chastising someone. Also, look around you next time you are out at the mall. Is everyone you see perfectly styled? Definitely not! Why do we expect people of the past to be any better? We carry last season's purses and sometimes make a fashion faux pas. So, consider the fact that not being spot on a periods fashion trend might be more historically accurate. Don't forget that maybe some one did that on purpose! Some people like a more qwirky style and I say rock on!

Now, I don't think that this means that you cannot have standards when it comes to fashion in general. I know that I myself have modesty standards that seem really high in modern culture. But even when I see someone who is violating my standards, it's not ok to make personal insults. Try "I don't like what you are wearing because it is immodest" instead of "You're a slut!", for example. Somethings that I think are good to have standards on are fit (clothes should), modesty (I really don't care to be able to tell what kind of panties you put on this morning), and wearing pjs and undergarments as clothing (these should stay at home!). And there is a difference between dressing badly and dressing oddly or in a way that doesn't appeal to you. I'm guilty of having the wrong gut reaction to the goth/emo trend that is popular right now. I'm also not a fan of facial piercings and tons of tattoos, but just because I think a person would look better without them, I don't have the right to insult them or dismiss their fashion choices. I know there are tons of ladies out there who love their tattoos and who am I to say that they are wrong or somehow a bad person?

Anyways, that's my thoughts on the subject. Let's all play nice.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Life's crazy!

So I had planned a bit more serious of a post for today but it has been a crazy two days. Yesterday, I found some odd charges on my debit card that I had to spend several hours at the bank getting all worked out. Everything should be fine now but it was pretty stressful. And I also found out that two of my friends who I thought were blissfully happy are considering divorce. And I've been feeling quite unmotivated about sewing right now. I've never made as many muslins for one project in my life as I am for the peacock graduation outfit. Blah!

So here's a quick shot of my outfit from today. It's not vintage by any means but I thought you might like to see what I wear on my nonvintage days.

Shirt: New York and Company
Skirt: Banana Republic
Blazer: The Limited
Shoes: Target
Hair flower: Belle Blossoms
Necklace: Banana Republic

But I did have a little surprise at home to cheer me up.

After seeing how amazing Casey's hat came out, I just had to get these two Wearing History patterns. I'm already dreaming of Version 1 of the 30s pattern in a light green with forest green loops in the back and Version 2 of the 40s pattern in navy with self-fabric piping in a fun swirly design. *sigh* What loveliness!

I also got a hair cut yesterday in to a long Middy cut with some length left on the front so I can still do victory rolls and a pony tail. With all of the drama yesterday, I have yet to get pictures.

Anyways, THE WEEKEND STARTS TOMORROW!!!!!

Don't forget to enter the giveaway!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Fashion and Film: Kiss Me Kate

Kiss Me Kate (1953) combines three of my favorite things-musicals, 50s fashion, and Shakespeare! Starring Kathryn Grayson, Howard Keel, and Ann Miller, this film follows the scuffles of a divorced couple (Grayson and Keel) who are putting on a musical version of 'The Taming of the Shrew' along with a beautiful young dancer (Miller) who, like character she plays, has no trouble attracting male attention. I do love this film, partially because I love Shakespeare! I particularly like 'The Taming of the Shrew' because I starred in a play based on it when I was in middle school. (Fun fact: I acted up through high school.)

Besides some Shakespearean costumes (I find vintage period films intriguing), there are some delightful off stage 50s costumes that are quite dreamy.

Miller and Grayson face off. I just adore Grayson's hat!

Another shot of the black outfit and hat! Plus she's got fur!

I also adored this yellow ensemble. I think it is a dressing gown as she's wearing it in the dressing room, but it'd also make a cute wrap dress. I am in need of a dressing gown or house coat. I love lounging around the house in my robe but it is getting kind of sad looking. :(

I usually pair my pink with brown but this gray and pink ensemble is so lovely! Check out the coordinating hat and purse.

This polka dot and scallop dress is by far my favorite! Love the hat too!

See, it has a scalloped underskirt too!

Youtube of the Week: Rats!

Ever wonder how hair rats are used? Dying to try them but can't find them? Lisa Freemont Street demystifies hair rats in this week's youtube of the week.

Have you checked out the Gettin' Organized Giveaway yet?

Monday, April 11, 2011

Collegiate Style: Part 2

My hubby returned home with the camera! Yay! So here is my attempt at collegiate style.

Blouse: Vintage
Skirt: made by me
Shoes: Payless

This sheer pink blouse was one of my first vintage purchases on etsy. Surprisingly it fits everywhere except the neck. Does this mean I have a fat neck?

I did my hair in victory rolls with a french twist in the back. I'm not usually too good with victory rolls, but I've been trying to practice more often. I think they'd go better if I had thicker hair.

Outtake! My hubby decided to be a smart mouth (or photographer in this case) and snap this shot of me before I was ready to go. Please excuse the messy house!

Collegiate Style

I watched Mona Lisa Smile today! I just love this movie. There is so much drool worthy 50s styles. It has everything from wedding attire, 50s collegiate style, lounge wear, and pjs! I've already done a film and fashion blog on this piece, but I thought I'd bring you some actual vintage collegiate inspiration.

Hanging around campus in saddle shoes!

Young love?

Aren't these three girl friends so cute!

Chatting between classes.

Eeep! Look at these lovely girls.

Lounging in the dorm!

And here's a bit of color!

I love collegiate fashion... maybe because I'm in college myself. So I whipped up a cute collegiate look for today. Too bad the camera was left in my hubby's car. :( So maybe there will be pictures later.