Friday, September 30, 2011

My Economic Stimulus Plan

Pretty much all that's on the news is about how the economy needs to be fixed. (Well, that or pondering if Sarah Palin is actually for real not running for president even though she says she's not.) Today I hit the local mall with one of my good friends and did my part to stimulate the economy. So here's my economic stimulus plan from today.

1) Look good, feel good, be successful!

Ladies in the 40s armed themselves with red lipstick before going to work in the factories. And I'm a firm believer that looking good leads to confidence which makes you more successful. Plus, I can wear makeup even at work or in inclement weather!

There is a Sephora at this mall and, while I've browsed inside, it's taken until now for me to get over the sticker shock enough to buy anything. I picked up Kat Von D's Autograph liner and red lipstick. I also picked up a brow pencil, eye primer and a highlighter for $3 each.

2) Back to Basics

My favorite pair of khaki shorts bit the dust this summer but I found these great replacements at White House Black Market on sale. Seriously, if I could afford it, I'd only shop at this store. I have found some really great deals on pants there like $90 jeans for $30. I also got a great cardigan on sale from The Limited. Yummy!

3) Pay attention to the details

I love accessories! They are a great way to add that something extra! Earrings are a great way for me to add a bit of work appropriate style to my look. Coral was my favorite color discovery of the summer and I think raspberry is my great fall color discovery!

Have you been stimulating the economy lately?

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

In which I knit and plot

So I finished my very first knitting project! Wrist warmers with cables!

I paired them with a nice pink t-shirt and I'm really loving the color combo!

The pattern I used was from Vampire Knits by Genevieve Miller. There's also a matching neck warmer but I haven't gotten that far.

They were pretty simple to knit up once I got the hang of the cable directions. The second one, however, ended up mysteriously larger than the other.....

I've also had a bit of an upset with my circle skirt embellishment for the sew along. The tutorial I used was for a skirt with a flat hem that was gathered at the top. I didn't think about how that would work with a circle skirt which has a round hem.

After freaking out a bit, I settled on embroidery and was inspired by the beautiful atomic designs from the 1950s. Here are some of my sketches of what I've been thinking about doing.

I was inspired by this fabric I stumbled upon at JoAnn's last night.


I am a bit nervous about this skirt being an orphan if I do go this route. I may go a bit simpler and do just little white "stars" like the ones on the fabric. It would go with a lot more things. I need to hem the skirt first anyways so I have some time to think about it.

I'm also a chemist so I love the idea of little embroidered atoms too.

Do you have a favorite atomic pattern? Any thoughts about how I could embellish this skirt?

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Fashion and Film: Oklahoma!

I adore musicals! I'm not entirely sure why. My mom loathes them. My dad enjoyed some classic musicals but about all mom could stand was White Christmas and a Muppet Christmas Carol once a year. I do remember my first real experience with musicals. My 3rd grade class watched Oklahoma! and The King and I back to back in music class. Needless to say, I love Rodgers and Hammerstein! (Which you probably now if you saw my State Fair review). I don't actually own any R&H films but Oklahoma was on tv today.

Now you may be wondering what sort of fashion inspiration I can get out of this film being that it is a) set in a time period I don't care for and b) a Western, which is something I ordinarily can't stand. But a while ago, I read on a historical costuming blog (sorry, can't remember which one) that often times hair, makeup and even costumes (to some extent) reflect the values of the period the movie was made in, rather than set in, which makes sense as beauty standards change over time and many practices would be ridiculous to modern viewers. So being that this film is from 1955, we can glean some tidbits of 50s fabulousness.

Gingham is always adorable! I could totally see this as a 50s day dress just shorter and with a few more crinolines!

I'm always on the lookout for hats and this film was no disappointment.

More gingham, more hats!

This white party number was dreamy.

The guys sported some fab plaids too!

Plus the music is pretty great too!

SSS and Slip ups

Day 22: Repeat

I wore my sorbetto again. I think this means I need to make another one!

Day 23: Fail

So I didn't wear anything me made today. On the other hand, I never got properly dressed or left the house. So that evens it out, right?

Day 24: Here comes the bride!

My husband is a wedding photographer (among other things) and I am the assistant photographer. We did a wedding this day and here's what I wore. I think I need to make a nice dress I can wear for weddings, especially if we are busier next summer!

Day 25: Yay fall!

I made this dress at the end of spring/beginning of summer during a freak cold spell and didn't get to wear it more than once. It's finally cool enough for me to wear it again! Woot!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

A Question for the Ladies

I've heard the virtues of the proper supportive garments for getting that great vintage look touted all over the blogosphere and I've decided to see what all of the fuss is about. So my question for you is what is a good starter piece? What's the one piece you can't live without? Is there a great company out there I should buy from? There are quite a bewildering variety of pieces out there for a beginner to sort through!

I'm probably not interested in an all in one kind of a piece as my figure will not fit any normal sizing! Yay for being curvey! (not)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

SSS and why chemists aren't fashionistas

Day 19: Bleach!

Today I had to work with the active ingredient in bleach. Yay! Not. So I opted to wear my chocolate coat and take it off at work

Day 20: Let's be fancy!

No bleach today so I went for something a bit fancy. I love this top, but it doesn't have enough sleeve for work. I may have a go with layering it this winter, but my serious lack of long sleeved shirts may put a dent in that.

Day 21: Bleach again!

Work again. Today I wasn't working with the bleach but my students were! So I went with my bow blouse and was just careful. I do have a snazy lab coat but it was hot and humid in lab today!

Youtube: 1930s Fingerwave Tutorial.



Enjoy my latest video!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

A Decade for Cold Weather

Oy, I feel like SSS posts have taken over my blog! I think if I do this again, I'll do much fewer posts, but September will soon be over anyways. As an antidote to SSS overload, here is some good old fashioned inspiration for you.

I'm planning on making one cold weather dress/skirt top combo for my fall and (more likely) winter sewing. I've been spying loads of lovely 1930s fashion lately, plus the 30s have the added warmth value of having longer skirts than the 40s or 50s. So enjoy some 1930s cold weather fashion!

I love all of the details on the tops!

These dresses come with a jacket which is a great way to extend the wearability of a garment through the change of season.

I adore the jacket on the right most dress! So chic!

Doesn't the middle dress have really interesting skirt seams?

I'd love a little fur bolero but somehow I don't think that's going to happen.

I'd love to know if that blue dress is one piece or a summer dress made winter proof by layering.

Are you planning any skirts or dresses for cold weather sewing? Or are you pants all the way during the winter months?

Monday, September 19, 2011

SSS some more

Day 16: Paris, mais oui!

I love France and was feeling Parisian chic in my red beignet and French beret.

Day 17: Renaissance Again

This dress again! While I can't move from my underarms to my waist, I can apparently still have a slouchy neck.

Day 18: Bad Hair Day

I legit wore this dress so I could wear my hat! I was having just a crappy hair day and running super late for church so a hat it was. After church, I did homework until my hubby's paintball team's end of season tournament so this is an old picture. You'll get over it.

Renaissance Again

Yay for more Renaissance pictures.

So, the odd tree shadows didn't look nearly as bad while we were having pictures taken.

My husband is still terribly excited about his monk costume.
We did see Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth. I loved her costume! The detail and amount of trimmings was unbelievable! Guess you get to be all snazy when you are the queen.

Aside from the guards (one of whom was were a rather large, awkward cod piece....), the queen was always accompanied by several ladies in waiting. They also had some rather snazy ensembles, but I only managed to get a shot of the backs. We didn't carry the camera around all day so that's about all of the pictures we got.

Missed the original post? Check it out here.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Another Side of Audrey

Doesn't she have the most amazing smile too?

Friday, September 16, 2011

A Different Side of Audrey

Happy Friday all! I thought a bit of Audrey inspiration would be a great way to end the week.

I know she's more famous for her uber sophisticated Breakfast at Tiffany's or Sabrina persona but I just love her sweeter, softer, more vulnerable side too!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

SSS Again

Hmmm... I'm kind of running out of ideas for SSS post titles but here are my outifts.

Day 13: Dress up Day

Tuesday is my dress up day so I wore a fun skirt! I love this skirt!

Day 14: No Aliens Here
Yay for completing a UFO! I really do like this blouse and am pretty sad that I took so long to finish it.

Day 15: First Day of Fall

So it wasn't the official first day of fall, but it's the first day that's felt like fall so I broke out my one and only "long sleeved" me made blouse. I seriously have a long sleeved shirt problem. I only have one rtw long sleeved top too. Anyone have a good pattern for a long sleeved shirt to recommend?

Oh, I'm half way done! Yay!

Ohio Renaissance Festival

I'm going to be at the Ren Fest on Saturday! If you are going to be there and want to meet up, send me an email! (It's on my contact me page). I think we are bringing the camera this weekend so there will be many nice photos for you next week. :)

The Graduate

So this isn't a UnFinished Object, but it's an UnBlogged object so I thought I'd give it a proper post. I made this back in April to wear to graduation but some how managed to get through the whole day without any pictures of my cute outfit. I just got ones in the ugly polyester sack they make you wear.

It was crazy windy so my hair a bit askew!

Fabric: 3.5 yds of peacock feather fabric on sale ($5/yd), 3.25 yds lining ($3/yd)
Pattern: Butterick 5557
Year: retro '55
Notions: zippers ($4), hook and eye (stash)
Time to complete: Can't remember
First worn: May 2011
Wear again? Yes. It does have some issues. The waistband on the matching pencil skirt is a bit snug. This was one of the last projects I did before discovering the wonders of FBA so the top fit is a bit odd, but it works and I like it.

Total cost: ~$30

I <3 this fabric!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

UFO - U = FO

Today, I finished a long standing UFO! I actually started this blouse back in March for Colette's spring palette challenge. It was my first go with knits and I blazed fearlessly on... until I got to the button hole part. Then I froze.

I ended up doing bound button holes for the first four buttons. The fifth button was at the waist bit and it had a nice pretty facing I'd sewn down back in March, so I just used a snap and sewed the button on top. I love the little collar detail but I think it'd go over better in a solid or less busy print.

Fabric: 2 yds of purple knit with bows grabbed off of the sale rack for something cheap
Pattern: Simplicity 2501 view C (although I think I used sleeves from something else....)
Year: contemporary
Notions: buttons, snaps
Time to complete: Can't remember
First worn: September 2011
Wear again? Yeah. It's definitely not perfect. It was my first time using a knit and I had construction issues plus fit issues plus fabric choice issues. It does have a bit of that lettuce leaf look on the hem, but I'll get over it. It is really great for work since I won't be completely crushed if it is ruined.

Total cost: something cheap

In other news, I dyed my hair a dark brown so that odd reddish streak is mostly gone. It still looks reddish depending on how the light hits it but it looks much less fake.

I also picked up this fab 1930s millinery reprint book. It looks awesome so far! This publisher also has an Edwardian millinery book which looks good too. Hopefully, I'll learn how to make some cute hats! Don't expect to see any too soon since I'm pretty busy with school and other things I need to do plus I think I need one of those millinery heads. (I can't think of what they are called at the moment and I'm too lazy to get off the couch and check in my book.)

Oh, and this is my SSS for today as well as a project for FESA and FPC.