Monday, November 30, 2009

Comments, Outfit Post, Thanksgiving

I've been slacking so you get three posts in one!

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For some reason I've been getting lots of spam in my comments so I've changed all comments to "moderated." You will still be able to comment, but I'll have to approve them before they post. I plan to approve everything unless it's obviously spam.

If anyone has suggestions on how to keep the comments open but keep the spammers out, I'm all ears.

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Friday night before last we went to our usual local swing dance hangout for a little dancing, drinking, and socializing. After bumming around the house like a schlub all day, I thought it would be nice to fluff up a little to go out.

I've been watching Perry Mason while I eat lunch every day and this outfit was inspired by Perry's femme-fatal/libeled-lady clients. They are always so glamorous!



I tried to give myself an early 60s bouffant hairdo. I think I got a pretty good "loaf of bread" going on in the back, but it only stayed up long enough for me to snap the photos. Even curled and back-combed, my hair is slippery! I ended up brushing it into a ponytail to go out.



1960s patent pumps: Thrifted
Nude dancer-weight fishnets: Leg Avenue
Pencil skirt: Newport News
Cap sleeve sweater: Thrifted
Copper-colored brooch: Thrifted
Double-strand faux pearls: Thrifted
Faux pearl drop earrings: Nordstrom

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Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!



This is a picture of our thanksgiving table for two. MD and I usually have Thanksgiving dinner with just us, and then go see family on Friday. It makes for a very relaxing holiday.

I'm still learning how to cook meat after being a vegetarian for years. After four hours in the oven, my brisket came out chewy. I ended up putting it back in for two hours and it was much nicer. It took way longer than it should have but I'm still proud that I've added a new dish to my repertoire. Maybe someday soon I'll be ready to have the family over for turkey day!

I just want you all to know how thankful I am for your comments, even though I suck at responding. Knowing that you're out there brightens every single day. Especially now that I'm stuck at home job hunting and cleaning.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Home Dec III (Part One)

Inspired by our success at the first two home d├ęcor attempts, I decided to (finally) do something about the kitchen windows.

In our kitchen we have a breakfast nook (that’s where I usually take pictures of my dresses)and an area for cooking. I chose to do each area a little differently based on the color schemes already present. I’m going to present each area in a separate blog entry as they are going to be rather picture heavy.

Let’s start with the cooking area!

Here is a before picture of the kitchen window in the cooking area. Yes, those are curtain hangers you see at the edges of the window frame. As usual, my before pictures weren't taken until AFTER I was done. Disorganized? Yes! I was halfway done putting up the curtains before I realized that I’d forgotten to take a before picture!



We already had a vague red and blue theme going in this area.

Mod Wall Clock


Rug In Front of Sink (This is actually a table runner from Ikea, but it makes a nice rug.)


Hand Towels


Kitchen Stool


Our house was originally built in 1925, and (despite a recent remodel by the owners) the kitchen still has the original layout and built-in cupboards. I wanted a fabric that would be appropriate for that era (20s/30s) or at least somewhat vintage looking. I found this great red and blue print on fabric.com. It’s based on turn of the (last) century textiles from Portugal.



I decided on decorative valances instead of curtains. The windows, which look out on a shared laundry area, are frosted and I wanted to keep as much light as possible!

The valances were beyond simple. I simply measured off nine inch wide strips (from selvage to selvage) and used the rolled hem foot to finish the ends. I didn’t bother finishing the selvages edges, which are white. I figured they would hang more nicely un-finished and the edges would just blend into the white paint around the windows. Then I just stitched a casing for the curtain rods and voila! Done!



It's hard to tell from this photo, but the valances are definitely a little crooked. I need to convince myself to un-pick the casings and re-measure the widths, but I’m really resistant to un-picking things. The really funny thing, is that they are both crooked on the same end. I’m wondering if I can just pass this off as an optical illusion?

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Outfit Post

This past Saturday, me and the Hubs were invited to go mini-golfing for our friend Tucker's 40th birthday. Naturally, we took advantage of the opportunity to costume-up in vintage golf attire.

MD's look inspiration is Rodney Dangerfield in Caddyshack.



MD's outfit (including the club) was entirely thrifted except for the socks.

I dug through the closet and came up with a 1930s lady-golfer look.



Shoes: Payless
Nude Backseam Hose: Leg Avenue
Skirt: McCalls 7523, made by me
Gloves: Thrifted
Belt: Borrowed from my Stop Staring Manhattan dress
Blouse: Choice (a local chain of Forever 21-like stores)
Hat: Walmart

Thursday, November 5, 2009

In Which I Am Made Redundant

My company was recently purchased and is going through a reduction in force. Unfortunately, I was one of the unlucky few who's force was reduced. I am unemployed. Gasp!

This all happened just over a week ago and I have been trying to get used to the idea of having to job hunt again. I am the worst job-hunter ever. Despite the fact that I am really good at what I do, I don't look all that great on paper and I always choke in interviews. Luckily, I should be able to collect unemployment benefits until I can find a new situation.

Until that kicks in I will be penniless. When it does kick in, I will be stone cold broke. In the mean-time, I've been trying to keep busy by cleaning my house, going to the gym, and sending out resumes.

...and sewing. Despite my lack of funds, I intend to continue sewing as much as possible. However, I will have to go on something of a sewing diet. My diet plan is as follows:

1. If I need fabric for a new project, I can only shop my stash. I can’t buy any new fabric unless it is to be used as a lining or a petticoat (or other essential accessory) for a garment I am actually in the process of either making or altering. I may not purchase any fabric to be used for a future project, no matter how pretty or inexpensive it is.

2. No new patterns unless it is such a totally insane deal that I will drop dead if I don’t buy them. For example, if I find a full box of uncut 40s/50s patterns at the flea market/thrift store in my size for $2 each, I'm going to buy them. I won't feel guilty and I will just economize somewhere else. ...and I will post them here, natch.

3. I am no longer allowed to buy accessories to go with a project I am working on. I must make do with the shoes, belts, jewelry, hair clips/flowers, that I already possess. This means no e-bay or etsy, no thrift stores, and certainly no traditional retail stores.

4. I am allowed to buy notions only if they are necessary to complete a project I am currently working on. I am not allowed to buy notions just because they are on sale or because I might need them at some point in the future.

Luckily, right before I was laid off, I got a big box of fabric in the mail from fabric.com. I purchased a bunch of navy twill and beige cotton khaki so I could beef up my work wardrobe. Looks like I'll be beefing up my job-hunting wardrobe instead. Le sigh.

I have three or four completed projects that I haven't posted here yet so there will still be regular posts for the next month or so. After that, I will post only when I have a completed project, or something to rattle on about.

Wish me luck!