Monday, March 31, 2014

Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.

Oscar Wilde once said "Be yourself; everyone else is already taken." All too often, we face the pressure to conform whether from others or ourselves. But it is really important that we feel free to be true to who we are as a person.

And this is one of the reasons that I cut off my hair. In my heart, I am a short haired girl. And I love it. I've chopped it off and grown it out before and I'll probably do it again.

There are also some changes going on in my personal life especially with graduating and starting a new job and some that I want to make like being more athletic that short hair will be helpful with.

Also, I've been wanting to go back to my natural hair color. I've tried a few times but gave up after a few months. So, this way, most of the color is gone and it'll be easy to grow out the rest.

So I'll be rocking vintage and a pixie for a while.

This dress is Simplicity 3010. I made it at the end of 2013 but this is the first time it made it onto the blog.

It's made from a teal corduroy and has 13 buttons, 3 of which are functional. Originally, I had planned on doing bound button holes but I didn't feel like it when I actually got to sewing up the project.

I've been having some mixed feelings about this hair cut since I've gotten it but today has been a good day. I've decided that iPhone photos make my hair look worse (even with my longer hair) so I refuse to judge my hair by iPhone photos anymore. They just make me feel bad.

So today, I'm embracing my inner pixie. :D

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Youtube: Bobby Pins and Pin Curl Clips

Just a short youtube video today with tips for using bobby pins and pin curl clips. Enjoy!

Monday, March 24, 2014

The rest of the conference

We didn't have time for any more extended photo shoots during the conference but I did get some snaps of other outfits.

I wore this great novelty print dress made from Simplicity 8398.

 I went for matchy accessories in navy, white and pink.

I also wore my Bernie Dexter dress.

The print is absolutely darling and I love yellow on me.

Over all, I had loads of fun and it was nice to get to dress up and stay inside (mostly) to avoid the chill of lingering winter.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Sunshine and Books

Being a photographer's wife has it's perks. And one of them is getting to go to great photography conferences!

This weekend, we're at a conference put on by Professional Photographers of Ohio. We went to this conference last year and it was amazing!

Aside from getting to hear some great speakers, I love getting to run around in cute outfits around photographers.

During some downtime yesterday, we did a mini shoot in the lounge in the hotel. We really lucked out as the hotel the conference is held out this year is gorgeous! Last year, it was a nice hotel but it looked very hotel-ish.

 I wore my yellow patio dress with red accessories for a bright pop of color. The entire hotel and conference center was done in blue and beige so I really popped!

There were also really large windows in this room. Lighting will make or break a photo so shooting by a window is a great way to help improve your indoor photos.

Aside from the window, there was an on camera flash and an off camera flash with a diffuser. A nice flash will also really help your photography. The tiny pop up flashes that come with the camera are not good.

Photos for a blog post work really well when you can tell a story. There were some old books lying around for effect so I picked one up to "read".

It's more interesting than just hey look at my outfit.

Although you do need some hey look at my outfit shots for a fashion blog!

There are more cute outfits to come. Get sneak peaks of the cuteness to come over on instagram!

Photographs curtsey of Will Thorpe

Monday, March 10, 2014

The Gingerbread Dress

I've been sewing! I started this late 40s dress last month but then got distracted by other things instead of hemming it. So I finally finished this dress and dubbed it the Gingerbread Dress because all of the brown reminds me of that yummy holiday treat.

I used a combination of my favorite late 40s dress pattern Simplicity 2851 but with the hip flap detail thingy from Simplicity 2502.

I choose some vintage mother of pearl buttons and brown linen/rayon blend for the accent to coordinate with this great brown wool.

Originally, I had a suit in mind for this wool but when it arrived it was much too thin and drapey so I went for a dress instead.

I had a really great hair day! I cut my hair last week and I'm loving the shorter look.

I also parted my hair a but more towards the center than usually and I'm shocked at the difference it makes in the look. Might have to start parting my hair this way all the time.

Whenever I give up growing out my hair and chop it, I always wonder why I started growing it out in the first place. I love me in short hair!

Alas, it wasn't actually this warm outside so this is what I was really wearing to be warm.

I probably didn't need the scarf but it was windy so the scarf protected my curls.

Overall, I'm so happy with this dress! It's a great light weight dress for spring and summer.

Friday, March 7, 2014

HSF#5 Bodice

This is yet another Renaissance Fair costume fix, but this time on the bodice of my red peasant dress.

This is the original dress which closes with lacing rings. I opted for lacing rings since I still had yet conquered my mind numbing dread of hand sewn eyelets. Now that I'm an eyelet pro (or at least not a raw beginner!) I wanted to remove the lacing rings and do eyelets instead.

Also, after making my gray kirtle and tweeking the pattern a bit, I wanted to have more of a straight edge to the front rather than such a pronounced curve.

You can really see here exactly how curved that center front seam is!

Tada! New Bodice! It's still slightly curve but follows the bodice pattern 2.0 much better.

You probably also noticed that I still chickened out on the lacing rings. I opted for strips of ribbon with loops. I saw this done by Jen of Festive Attyre (alas, the page has gone missing....) and I thought I'd give it a try since I still didn't want to do eyelets....

It's still not perfect but one thing I've learned from historical costuming it's that the second one is always so much better. This one is improved and good enough.

The Challenge: #5 Bodice

Fabric: Red linen rayon (for the original kirtle no new fabric used)
Pattern: Self-drafted
Year: late 1500s
Notions: grosgrain ribbon (stash)
How historically accurate is it? fabric content is meh (no rayon this period) and eyelets would have been more period but I'm going with it looks more period on the outside than it did before so that's an improvement.
Hours to complete: 4 or so (this is why I hate adjusting things! Takes twice as long as making from scratch plus all of that seam ripping!)
First worn: not yet, I'll come back and add some photos of it on me during faire season
Total cost: $0

Monday, March 3, 2014

How to Wear Hats

I just adore hats. And I get a lot of comments for people that go along the lines of "I could never pull off a hat" or "I have hats but I just don't know how to wear them". I thought I'd take some time to try and distill some of my hat wearing knowledge and pass it on to you.

One of the main stumbling points to potential hat wear gals is hair. What hair goes well with a hat? What isn't going to work? The good news is that there is one general formula that works well. The bad news is that there isn't one magic hair do that looks great on everyone with every hat.

In general, you want a nice flat section of hair where the hat is going to sit. Since most 40s and 50s styles have a flat crown section, most of your dos will work with hats although victory rolls tend to be a no no with hats.

Generally, if a hat has a unique feature or some sort of asymmetry, I like to put that on the side of my head with the part so there is less hair in the way to block that detail.

But for every rule there's an exception.

Bangs also look really great with hats!

Some hats also require special hair dos. For example, turbans are usually worn with the hair slicked back which is very different from the average 40s hair style. If you are unsure, do some pinterest research to see how women wore your particular style of hat in period.

So now that we've gotten our hair taken care of, what should we wear with our great hats?

Hats in neutral colors such as brown, tan, white, navy, black, etc work just like neutrals in garments-they go with everything. And don't be afraid to mix neutrals. See I'm wear brown, white black and tan in the same outfit.

 Match your hat to your other accessories to bring a pop of color to an otherwise to matchy-matchy look.

Use a hat to bring out one of the more subtle colors in a print. The blue and greens stand out in this dress but the pink hat helps bring out the small pink flowers in the print and the pink buttons.

Wearing a similarly colored hat and skirt is a great option especially if the colors aren't an exact match. They'll be far enough away that you can't tell.

For a more authentic look, pick accessories and a hat that pull from one main color of your outfit to look sharp and put together.

 Don't be afraid to mix it up a bit. I love this navy blue and white hat but with only one sweater as the sum total of navy in my closet I didn't wear it much until I realized that I could wear it with other colors too!

For even more great hats, check out this video I made last year of a bunch of my hats.

What is your biggest hurdle when it comes to wearing hats?