Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Lots of new stuff!!

I LOVE this bag.... Its another Ellen Medlock pattern. Its called the Karma Bag! My mom and I both took a class at the sewing expo 2 yrs ago and made one... but I didn't like the fabric they gave us so I gave it away.... and after 2 yrs I finally get around to making another one... In fabric I do like!
This is vintage fabric from the attic of my great aunt in Nashville.... Mildred. The inside is lined with some adorable Scottie dog fabric I bought at Jo anns.... left over scraps from a wrap I made my mom for Christmas one year.
The EXTRA awesome thing about this bag is its exchangeable because of the way the hardware is made.... just twist off two of the little tips... slide this purse off another on... twist caps on and you're off with a different bag!
Now I gotta make some different bags to go with this! Which should help my ailing purse wardrobe.... cause I really love this bag!

My B-day was last month (big 36!) and this is what mom gave me....
An adorable and much needed crochet hook wallet.... check out the little scissor button!

Pretty back....

A easy crochet book,,,, garden journal (just around the corner and it'll be time to plant!!!) and a devotional book.

A cute embroidered towel....

A hand knit cotton wash cloth and hand made chai soap (smells SO good!!!)

She also gave me the cutest quilted wall hanging she made!!! But I forgot to take a pic... next time!!! Thanks Mom!!!
I'm so lucky... my husband and my mom give the best presents!!

For The Bald Man's B-day and V-day we went to ATL!!
Here's me below in my white wool coat I made this year!! Complete with welt patch pockets! Its pattern B5259.

Sorry bout the booty shot! haha! But I made these pants and I'm really happy about the fit!! The pattern was drafted from a well fitting RTW pair of pants.

Here's the button up blouse that fits!!!!!!!!! Its S2732! One of those patterns that has Cup size options!! I'm completely in love with having a button up that fits and I didn't have to do any adjusting to it except add a half inch on the upper side seam. No FBA!! I am so buying all cute patterns that have cup size options.... makes life simpler... who doesn't need that!

Another night in ATL at VIA, the Restaurant/club ... oh so hip place to be... haha we had a blast! Bald Mans nephew runs this place so we always go here when we're in town.

In the works..... the style project continues a bit more..... I'm making a Blazer using one of the fabulous cup option patterns I have (hoping it works as well at the blouse pattern did!!!) and crocheting a halter top for summer...
and still working on the Navy coat embellishments!

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Friday, February 19, 2010

Personal Style Research cont...

Ok.... so I've got the my body shape(hourglass), know my color palette (soft summer) , picked my 3 words describing my "style"(romantic, casual, sexy)
I know what I like and what looks good on me.
The next exercise I've been working on is the "who are you" and the practicalities of fitting favorite looks into the wardrobe.

Lets see, I don't work outside the home.... the biggest part of my days are spent, working out, sewing, cooking(maybe I should make more aprons!), being a taxi service for my son and going to the store for groceries/house hold supplies.
This requires jeans and cute fitted t-shirts, workout clothes and yoga pants.... all of which I love!
I love making jeans and need to make some more...
I made alot of yoga/workout pants last summer and they have all but fell apart! Where the heck do people buy good cotton spandex!!
I occasionally make t's and tanks.... then decorate with stamps, embroidery...etc. But most of the time I buy t's and tanks when the go on sale and then embellish them.... sewing t's is kinda boring... esp, since I've made alot over the years... and its soooo much cheaper to buy them when they go on sale and maybe just take them up in the waist for better fit then do the fun stuff!
workout clothes.... again... I wait for sales... I think they're kinda boring to make plus I can't find good cotton spandex that can hold up and look good for long.... also I prefer the fabric that keeps you dry even though you sweat... and I have no ideal where to but that stuff.
If I'm going to a store or taking my son somewhere I typically go in jeans, t-shirt and throw on a bolero or some kind of jacket over it.... and hoop earrings!

We go out once or twice a week and I like to get dressed up.... this is where maxi and mini dresses, corsets, dress pants and pretty button ups come into the picture... and sexy knit tops and t's!!..... My wardrobe is in need of a couple more corsets and mini dresses. And alot of blouses, which can also be worn to church.
I like wearing wrap dresses, long skirts and knit tops to church.

My hobbies outside of the house are walking and working with my dogs... which just requires the t shirt jean wardrobe of my everyday.
We do go away for weekends and vacations I dress up more in my "going out" clothes when we do.

So going through my closet and ruthlessly throwing things out I realize alot of stuff is really in colors I don't like wearing and styles I apparently don't like wearing... cause alot of stuff I've made, wore once and never looked at again! But now I can 'Identify' the issue with each piece!!!
yep... I'm really getting somewhere here...
I am guilty of certain things...
I buy fabric on sale not thinking about the color enough
I make things that have no real place in my lifestyle

Before I met The Bald Man I had a closet full of color that looked good with my dark tan and brown/golden hair. I never wore black! Then The Bald Man enters the pic and he buys me black clothes, picks out black fabrics... and I have a closet full of black clothes that I don't like wearing.
There I said it... I don't like wearing black for tops! Sorry Bald Man.
According to my color research I am to avoid black for a top because it makes me look like death... I knew it! I told the Bald Man this was all his fault. Out goes some beautiful black clothes..... that I hated wearing. Ofcourse black for pants is a must!!!! Light colored pants are not my friend...

Out went alot of stuff.....
I even went through my shoes....
I only wear clogs, wedges, platforms, boots and sneakers... so why do I have so many stilettos????

My purse closet.... oh yeah... needs alot of work.... bye to lots of things there.

Accessories are next.... thats gonna be a hot mess to go through....

Make up..... I did have my make up re done when I let go of the tanning bed and my old hair color... but I was hanging on to alot of Mac eye colors and blushes I no longer look good in.
I found this site http://trepanrr.tripod.com/color_analysis_test.htm#your_personal_makeup_palette
which pushed me to clean out my make up drawers. Much better!

So.... Now I only have clothes I actually like to wear in my closet... and I've got room to make clothes I really need and will wear!

More jeans, some black trousers, blouses, a couple of mini dresses, a corset or two ( I love corsets with jackets!!) In real need of some blazers/jackets in colors I like!
I would also like to add a pair of nude wedges and animal print platforms... and some thigh high boots (crazy I know but I love'em) I get a little crazy with shoes sometimes ;)

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Friday, February 12, 2010

Personal Style Research

For about 2 years now I've noticed something wrong with my wardrobe... alot of the colors I used to love to wear don't look as good on me anymore... My skin is alot more pale (no more tanning bed for me!) my hair used to be brown with lots of gold highlights... then it was blond (that thew me off) and now its all brown.. so its only natural my clothing colors would change to.
I mean... all my make up colors have changed...

Also some of the styles I've been making don't seem... quite right when I wear them... they fit and all...but
I don't know what happened.... When I used to buy clothes I think it was easier to have clothes in the right color and right style... cause I tried them on!! I could see if the color made me look vibrant or dull... I could see if the style made me look "right"... could see if it suited my body, my height. Now I think I've got in a habit of looking at pics on patterns or magazines and thinking.. I love that so I'm going to make it and wear it! Same with fabric... I love the color or relate the color to how I used to look in it...so I just buy it... make it up... then I'm less than wowed!

So when I saw what Becky was doing over on her blog , Sew and So, with her Personal style project I knew I needed to look into it also.
Using the articles and guides from Retochic.co.uk/ , thechicfashionista.com and prettyyourworld.com
....I begin the journey.... (lol)

First I started with the LookBook... going through websites and saving pics of clothes I love and fashion magazines... then I put the pictures in categories and really looked at each pic... sometimes (like retrochic suggests) you like the picture and not really the outfit for yourself (guilty!) anyways... narrowed the pics down to clothes I actually want... and would like to wear myself.... then narrowed it down a bit more because I had to think about what would look "good" on my body shape (which has changed over the years also due to plastic surgeries, I used the be a rectangle )... Now I've determined my figure to be hourglass (the chic fashionista guide) because my hips and chest are almost the same size (chest is about an inch bigger than hips) and my waist is 11 inches less than my chest, and pretty defined if I wear the right clothes and I gain weight all over when I gain, lose all over when I lose weight. Then I have to consider I'm kinda short at 5'5. Not petite but still.... not trying to look short either!
After all that narrowing down... I have a bunch of pictures of clothes I would wear and I believe would look good on my figure type. I taped them to paper... added notes about what I liked best about each piece... then I made notes on the generalizations of each category of clothing...

Tops: I like form fitting knit tops with small details at the neck, scoop or v-neck. Love corset type tops. Tees and tanks with details of screen printing, small crystals, painting, stamps,etc. Cowl necklines, little gathering details. Wrap tops. Binding detail

Blouses: I love,love heirloom details on blouses like touches of lace, pin tucks, very tiny ruffles, etc. Light weight fabrics. I like them to be very fitted in the bust and waist. The sleeves can be loose. Mandarin collars., bias binding

Jeans: Boot cut or flare leg. Not high waisted, not to low waisted.... Love patch pockets on the front and don't care for traditional front pockets at all. I like them embellished with embroideries, crystals, etc. Dark washes.

Trousers: Tight in the hips and booty.... flare at the knees...

Shorts: Only dress shorts with cuffs (to be worn with wedges)

Skirts: Love fitted mini's or long and flowy

Dresses: My favorite dresses that I wear over and over are fitted knit mini dresses and maxi dresses. Wrap dresses.

Jackets: Cropped, boleros, shrugs. Sometimes a fitted jacket with jeans is nice. I only like Long jacket/blazers with shorts or short fitted skirts.

Details I like on anything: Top stitching, exposed zippers,

So I think the 3 words I would use to describe my "style personality" is Romantic, sexy, casual.

Another part of this exercise was to look over teenage pics of yourself... lol!!!! I changed from one extreme to another growing up.... from redneck ripped jeans and concert tees in my early teens to floral dresses and lace blouses in my late teens.... in my 20's I was all about fitted tops and blouses (with heirloom details or course) Y necklaces, classic button ups, layered looks, hoop earrings, trendy stuff.... Early 30's, embellished designer jeans with fitted blazers, trendy knits tops, club wear ... I was very social!! :)

And here I am now....

For my colors which have changed ALOT over the last 4 yrs..... I used prettyyourworld.com and thechicfashionista.com

The colors recommended for my current hair color, skin tone and eye color are mostly colors I didn't know I could wear and look good! Colors I just never thought of but I'm loving!!

We went to Atlanta last weekend and I bought fabrics in these colors... after draping them around me first... wow! What a difference!! My husband even said something about how good those colors were going to look on me.... so I'm excited!!!

With patterns picked out in styles I know I'll wear and with details I know I'll love... in colors I know I will look my best in.... its all becoming clear!!! lol!!!

now just a few more parts to this research on the retrochic guide.....

Whew,,,, not as easy as trying on clothes but I think it'll be better in the long run.

And while I'm researching I have a couple of purses I want to make (I hate my "purse wardrobe" it needs alot of work) and I promised my husband some shirts for the fabric shopping in ATL! I bought some super nice stuff!!!

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Pretty Tunic and Panama Purse

Here is the tunic I made a couple of weeks ago....
I took an extra couple of inches off the sides to give a better fit since I don't like super loose tunics. Believe it or not this is not embroidery.... its a decorative stitch on my Pfaff machine!!! One of the "maxi stitches"!! Love it!!

On the cuff too....

This is an Ellen Medlock pattern... I love a messenger bag for everyday use. Its perfect for everything I carry, plenty of room for extra pockets and big enough for a book (in case I'm waiting on my son to get done with one of his lessons)
I used a faux leather type fabric, appliqued on a Mola' I bought in Panama....

And lined it in a fabric covered in hearts!!! lol!!! Hey.. it was close to Valentines day when I was making it!

On the embroidery machine I'm working on a wool navy coat I bought at a thrift store... I've had it for awhile but couldn't figure out exactly how to re make it.
Then I saw this in a Jenny Haskins magazine and knew... thats the direction I'm going with the coat!

Picked out my designs... and the lining in the coat..... here's what I have done so far....

I can't wait to get it done.... I'm in need of another warm coat since this year has been so cold!

No other sewing lately.... I've been working on organizing the house... mainly the kitchen, laundry room and my 3 sewing rooms!
Then I plan to re decorate my bed room and kitchen... oh and organize the office (yuk!)
I do hope to squeeze in some sewing in between.
And still working on my style and coloring project... its really so fun!!! I'm making more progress!! More on that later.

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Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Sashiko Machine update and Crochet happenings

So I've been sewing up a storm here! Made 2 shirts last week... one was a button up and it fits!!!! I've not had a button up shirt that fit me since I got implants back in 04!! haha!! and I've been afraid to try and make one... I was afraid I wouldn't be able to get it to fit... but no more!!! There will be many more button ups in my future wardrobe plans!.... more on that when I get a pic of it though... and I'm making a dress this week... also...
For now... check out my darling bolero jacket I made last week too,,, pinstripe navy woven fabric that was sent to me by my mothers friend Gloria... and I sashikoed this cool design with the new Babylock,, and top stitched with it.
Looks sooo pretty.. just loving that sashiko stitch... I didn't take a good pic of the dress I made it with or a pic of the inside of the jacket... its reversible!!! I love reversible clothes... I used a beautiful brocade my mom gave me for the other side (the brocade actually came from China as a gift from my brothers then inlaws.) I will post a pic of the other side and the dress soon.

Crochet.... working on a long sleeve shrug with this beautiful sparkly yarn!

Working on Granny squares for the CAL I joined on Ravelry.com

AND... a couple of weeks ago I finished another sweater... just in time for that terrible weather we had last week! Its super warm!!

Well,,, thats what I've been up too....

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