Wednesday, August 31, 2011


Today I tried out a new hair do! First go at fingerwaves. Yay!

My heavy side of my part came out a bit more like a Marcel wave rather than a fingerwave but it did stay in all day.

See-super wavey! It did flatten out to more of a 30s look by the end of the day. And I usually make my hair curlier than I want since it tends to flatten a lot during the day. Plus I had goggles on at work!

The back was kind of ehhh. I think I need to try a different setting pattern. The sides were pincurled in alternating rows (ie cw, ccw, cw, etc.) and the back I curled under with sponge rollers since it was too short.

My makeup is from Lauren Rennells vintage makeup book. Epp! My eyebrows look red. All of the eyebrow pencils I've been able to find are reddish brown. :(

Youtube: Thrifting Finds #1

I finally got around to making another youtube video. I had some technical difficulties this summer, including losing part of my tripod, but I'm back in business now!

Enjoy my latest thrifting finds!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Fashion and film: Lovely to Look At

Today I caught "Lovely to Look At" (1952). It was a really nice film and it has a Parisian fashion show. Who doesn't adore a film with a Parisian fashion show? It stars Kathryn Grayson (Stephanie) and Marge Champion (Clarisse) as heiresses of a Parisian dress shop that is on the verge of bankruptcy. Co-heir Al (Red Skelton) and pals Tony (Howard Keel) and Jerry (Gower Champion) are film producers and they help scare up some funding for a fashion show. As per usual, romance ensues, but what happens when there are 3 girls and 2 boys? To add to the tension Al's girl friend Bubbles (Ann Miller) arrives from NYC. I'm a fan of Kathryn, Red and Ann so this was a real treat.

Our three leading ladies.

Yummy evening gown.

I loved this little cape!

More fancy ensembles. Purple sparkles!

And the fashion show:

There really were tons and tons of fabulous evening ensembles in this film! If you love evening wear, this is a must see!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Sorbetto and Sports

Today my husband and I went on a mini-golf date! It was so much fun! We don't usually do anything more exciting than dinner or a movie but I'm thinking we really need to now!

I wore this cute new shirt from Colette Pattern's free Sorbetto pattern.

Fabric: 1.5 yds of garment weight cotton ($4/yd)
Pattern: Colette Pattern's Sorbetto + sleeves from some random Simplicity blouse pattern
Year: contemporary
Notions: bias tape ($2), elastic (from stash), rick rack (from stash)
Time to complete: 2 hours
First worn: August 2011
Wear again? Yes! This was a really great pattern. (And my husband actually likes this print! Woot!) It wouldn't have taken nearly as long to finish if I had actually planned out what I was going to do and not sat around and thought about it while sewing. It is a bit boxy. Like the Pendrell, I made the waist to my bust measurement, but with this pattern I also added a bit of elastic to the back so the blousiness in the back looks intentional and not awkward.

Total cost: $8

(Wow! I haven't made a garment since July! Ren fest dress + secret project for church = time suckers!)

Top: me made
Skirt: Banana Republic
Hair flower: Belle Blossoms BOM for August
Belt: New York and Company

Classic awkward me pose. I always stand awkwardly and do weird things with my feet.

I love this hair flower! The color is a lovely pale orange and dark pink!


A photo where I actually thought about my pose.

Tallying score! I lost.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Fall Fabrics

So let's look at my current fall fabric selections!

Yummy grey and black houndstooth for the 1940s style suit.

A black, grey and blue wool blend for the 1950s style jumper.

And the brown twill for my circle skirt which I think I finally decided upon an embellishment for. I picked the easier (and coincidentally more period) option. Guess you'll have to wait and see what it is. The twill didn't photograph well on it's own, but this shot with my new scrapbooking paper turned out ok. I'm actually currently scrapbooking all of my me made pieces with some awesome 50s style paper.

And my latest Renaissance dress shopping haul. The clear plastic tubing is for the hoop skirt. The guy at Home Depot was a bit flustered when I told him I was going to use this for a dress. I also picked up some great glass pearls (not at Home Depot. lol) and some wire cutters. I'm so excited because my dress is almost to the wearable stage and then I can focus on the details and not stress because at least I'll have something to wear. For those of you in Ohio, I'm planning on going to the Ren Fest on pirates weekend so do stop me and say hi if you are there too. I'll be the one in the red dress. ;)

Monday, August 15, 2011

The Designer

I just adored the 1914 "The Designer" magazine cover reprint so much that I thought I'd scour the net for some other images from this lovely magazine and I found a few!

The next two are pages from inside the magazine!

All images are from 19-teens issues!

I also found this lovely website where you can browse the results of a dress maker's research-including undergarments, dresses, outer wear and even hats! Just click on the research link and then dress to find loads of great dresses from old magazines. The bulk of the dresses are from the 1910s and 1920s.

Going German

Saturday evening, my husband and I hit the German Festival. I'm not German and I really am not that big a fan of German food (or really anything German), but at just $2 for parking, you really can't get any cheaper for Saturday night. Plus my husband was really up for trying some German beers.

Think I can pull off the blonde bar maid look? lol.

There were quite a few varieties of beer, but the planners seriously underestimated the number of people as they ran out of wine and one kind of beer by 7:30/8 pm. As I don't drink beer, I was pretty bummed that they ran out of wine, but I did sample a funnel cake and a strawberry banana smoothie.

They did have root beer on tap in these cute barrels too!

There was a stand with some great reprints of vintage magazine covers, ads and art work with some originals sprinkled throughout.

Needless to say, I spent quite a while browsing in this booth!

I picked up a reprint of this 1914 edition of The Designer. I just love these outfits! Ones I left behind included a darling 30s gal with puppies getting of a train (had they been cats, this one would have come home with me), a 1910s cover of Modern Priscilla with a gal in a bathing suit, and a 1918 painting of 6/7 gals in bathing suits on a rock. They mostly had things from 1900s-1930s which I'm assuming has something to do with copyright laws. I'm not sure what they were doing at the German Festival since only a few things were in German, but I'm glad they were there!

I tried a makeup look from Lauren Rennells makeup book. I've been really loving this book! It's chock full of information! I've also been experimenting with changing the shape of my brows with makeup. It's been semi successful. The makeup does tend to come off pretty easily and I don't have the best color to match my brows. I was amazed at how much your brows can change the look of your face!!

Hope you all had a lovely weekend too!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Questions, questions

Today I have a couple of questions for you. Firstly, I'd like to know what your favorite types of posts are. Is there anything you'd like to see more of? Less of? I very much do enjoy blogging, but I've come to realize that it's really not something I do just for myself. If it was, I'd just keep a journal or something. So, I'd like to know what you like reading about.

Secondly, I've been pondering a new sewing project. There are so many wonderful costumes out there in films that are so inspiring and I have a huge list of ones I want to add to my wardrobe. Would any of you be interested in a bit of a sew along type project? It would be awesome to work together and inspire each other with our sewing. I'd plan on something long term with no time pressure. Just each of us working at our own pace on whatever most inspired us. It'd definitely not start until after my Renaissance dress is finished, but do let me know if you are interested or have any ideas. I'm still muddling over the details.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Renaissance dress progress

I've made some nice progress on my Renaissance dress. The entire bodice is done including the giant sleeves.

I decided I wanted more of a contrast on the sleeve so I bought some new green material for it. I'm really happy with it. I guess I just like red and green dresses.

The sleeve fabric has this really great swirly vine pattern. The shine looks much better against the bodice than the matte finish of my original choice.

I love the section of fabric I choose for the front of the bodice. I've never sewn with a print where I had to worry about print placement, but I'll definitely keep it in mind for future projects. It just takes a bit more planning in the cutting stage. I did not, however, match across any other pieces.

And the back! The grommet placement marked on the pattern was really odd. They had you put them where the boning was. Weird. Anyways, I just scooted them over and voila.

The pattern suggested serging or zig-zaging the edges, but my fabric was really fray prone and it looked really sloppy. So I did red bias binding. Not the most historically accurate, I know, but it looks really sharp.

Putting in the sleeves was a real bear. There was lots of unpicking stitches and yelling at my machine and fighting with the 2 yds of fabric hanging off each sleeve. But they are in and that's all that really matters. So I'm going to be taking a bit of a break from this project and work on some little side projects.

What do you do when you have a challenging or fickle sewing project? Keep plugging along? Take a break?

Sunday, August 7, 2011

The one that started it all

So, I finally got around to photographing Pendrell #1 for you. It's really a darling little top. I do love this pattern a lot!

I picked up this darling little embroidered white fabric on the sale rack at Jo-Ann's for super cheap. I figured that my first Pendrell would be more of a working muslin but it turned out amazing! It's so comfy that I wore in an all day car ride to Maine back at the end of June. I enjoy wearing it with my Beinget or belted with jeans. It is also great for me since I can wear those multi-strand necklaces. I love the way they look but it's hard for me to wear them since one strand is always hanging awkwardly in my cleavage.

I also got a new bike this weekend. Yay! They actually had a couple of cute retro looking bikes at Walmart but they were only one speed and that wasn't going to happen since I live at the top of a hill. So I got a nice pale blue 21 speed. It's pretty awesome. And it's a girl bike so I can wear skirts on it! Woot! I always enjoy looking cute.

Hope you all had a nice weekend!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


My new shoes came in today! Thank you UPS! :)

They are a pair of darling leather saddle shoes by Bass. I chose the hemp/cocoa color combo which is a nice tan and chocolate brown. Much less sock hop than the options with bright white! My second choice was a lovely vintage yellow and white but the more practical color combo won out.

And they have the most darling plaid inside! Eeep! And I got them for $16 shipped! Sale (on + groupon + groupon bucks + discount for opening a account + free shipping= awesomeness! Normally $69!

They feel true to size to me and are a bit stiff but the reviews said that they'd loosen up nicely! I'm terribly excited. I've wanted saddle shoes for a while. They'll be great for school!

And speaking of shoes, the lovely American Duchess is giving away a pair of shoes she's designed called the Devonshires.

Here's what she has to say about them:

"The Devonshires are a leather 18th century shoe based on museum examples from the 1760s through 1780s. They're made of top-grade dyable leather, with a beautiful, smooth Italian leather sole for dancing, and are hard-wearing, water- and mud-proof, for even the toughest of outdoor re-enactments.

Pre-Order the Devonshires through August 10, and get the special $100 price. We're only making 200 of these shoes, so don't miss the chance to own one of only a couple hundred pair on the planet! Visit to order."

So hop on over and pre-order yourself a pair!

And speaking of historical costuming, I finished my corset!

Yay! They are a bit of a bear to get on by myself and they are a but large in the upper back (should've done an FBA I think...) but other than that, I'm really happy with them. My busk came in too, but it's a bit long so I'm going to have one of my power tool literate friends shorten it for me.

And here's my dress pieces! (well some of them, there's still more to cut!) I decided to go with the lovely red side that you see. I'm just going to change up my sleeve material (which is only 2 yds) so crisis averted.