Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Disneyland Dream

While I work on my "what I got for Xmas" post, please enjoy this film from 1956. (The year our house was built!) Try as I might, I can't embed a smaller sized linky thing that won't bleed into the side bar. If you'd like to see an unobstructed version, click the "Internet Archive" link below.

From Internet Archive: "In July 1956, the five-member Barstow family of Wethersfield, Connecticut, won a free trip to newly-opened Disneyland in Anaheim, California, in a nationwide contest. This 30-minute amateur documentary film tells the fabulous story of their fun-filled, dream-come-true, family travel adventure, filmed on the scene at Walt Disney's "Magic Kingdom" by Robbins Barstow.

In December 2008, "Disneyland Dream" was named to the National Film Registry by the Librarian of Congress."

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Oh, hello there!

I disappeared again. Sorry!

So Thanksgiving happened and then we lost our internets for, like, ever and then we got them back and I got sick and was too tired to post and then... Oh never mind. I think I'm finished with all that and I'm finally back. Hooray!

Thanksgiving was nice. It went a little differently this year. Instead of Turkey Day alone with the Hubs and then off to visit family on Friday, we did the opposite. It was a nice switch and the weekend seemed a little longer because we were finished with family stuff by Friday morning. Here is a table photo, taken at my in-laws house.

Since it was Thanksgiving, Hubs and I took the opportunity to get dressed up a little fancier than we would on a regular weekend afternoon. I considered doing an outfit post but I was too shy to ask anyone to take our picture. I did manage to get one really bad self portrait.


I got a nice candid of the Hubs, though, talking to my mom and sis. I think he looks rather dapper. In his hand are a bunch of '40s ties that my sister's roomate/best friend/ex boyfriend gave him. They are gorgeous! Thanks N! I wish I had pictures but they've been put away already and I don't want to dig around in his closet looking for them.

We did quite a bit of thrifting while we were up in Rosatown.

I got a striped sweater

and a grey sweater

A cute gold bag

some reproduction vintage canisters for the kitchen

and this crazy beautiful 70s(?) dress from FINLAND. Unfortunately, it's a little snug. I barely got it zipped up so you don't get to see the back.

On our way home from Rosatown, we stopped at our favorite Fogville thrift store. I got an old sheet in a totally cute flower pattern. It's being cut up for a project right at this very moment!

On the Sunday after Thanksgiving, we went to the Candlestick Park Antique Market for the first time. It was nice. Not a lot of people and good prices...except for the guy who wanted $40 for four really messed up 1940s tropical curtain panels. That would have been a great price but most of the pleats were ripped out and they were filthy, torn and WET. Ew. If you are trying to sell a pile of soggy, moldy fabric you should at least be willing to haggle. The lowest he would go was $35. He kept saying, "But if you take em home and wash em they'll be fine." Um. No.

The Hubs got (almost) a whole set of the Popular Mechanics Home Handyman encyclopedia from 1961. Only number 11 is missing. They are perfect inspiration books for updating (retro-dating?) our 1950's home!

In other news, I've been sewing! I have completed a dress, which I will photograph and post soon. I made a blouse too, which is awaiting buttons or rather, waiting for me to be brave enough to do the buttonholes. I've also started on a dress and blouse made from the sheet pictured above. I am looking forward to showing you some new projects very soon.

Happy (very very very late) Turkey Day and Happy Holidays! THANKS for reading my blog and sticking with me while I've been outta commission/distracted/exhausted. I'll post again after Xmas.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

An Award!

Look! I won an award!!

Full disclosure: I won this award WEEKS ago. Ever since my job ate my life (I will stop kvetching soon, really) I've been having a hard time keeping up with the blog. Posting has been near impossible, responding to comments has stopped entirely, although I was crap at that before too. But I am trying to keep up, really, and I value every comment and, well, an award is a special thing and I really should have posted this sooner. Nancy at The Hem M A Blog was so sweet to give it to me and I really am thankful. Thank You Nancy!

The conditions that come along with this reward are:

1. Accept the award. Post it on your blog along with the name of the person who awarded it along with a link to their blog.

2. Pay it forward to 15 other bloggers that you have recently discovered.

3. Contact those bloggers and let them know they've been chosen.

I'm paying it forward to my 15 most recent followers with blogs of their own. For some reason Blogger isn't letting me access some of the blogs in the first 15 followers so some had to be skipped. Stupid Blogger. I know that some of you who were skipped have blogs, but for some reason, I can only get to your Google profile, not your blog - or worse yet, I click on you and nothing happens! Urgh! I am SO sorry about that. I really appreciate all of my followers, and am still amazed that I have any at all, so if I skipped you and you do have a blog, please don't feel like you were skipped intentionally!!


Here are 15 blogs that you should really go have a peek at, if you haven't already:

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Work. Shoes. Fun.

Tomorrow begins the third week of my job. Thank you everyone for all of your nice comments and congratulations!! I am very happy to be employed once again.

Working is way better than being broke but it takes up so much TIME!! I'm having a hard time with my schedule. For the last ten years or so, I've managed to arrange it so that I get in super early and leave around 4/4:30 pm. At my new gig I don't get to leave until 5:30 and it is killing me. I feel like I basically get home, eat, go to bed and start all over again. I hope that I start to relax into my new schedule soon. At the moment, I'm so tired and busy that I feel like I barely have time to blog, much less read everyone else's blogs. I miss you all so much!!!!

- - -

I've worn my new shoes (not the boots tho) more than once and have found them to be mostly comfortable.

The Clarks are the best of the bunch as they broke in almost immediately. I had a little rubbing on my baby toes on day one but that was all. They are nice and wide, for a pump, and the leather stretched out to fit my feet really quickly.

The Sofft are second best. The arch support is really great and while my toes did get a little achy on the first day, it was definitely manageable. By the third wearing, my toes were happy and snuggly. No pain. Good shoes. LOVE that arch support!

...and I kind of accidently bought another pair.

The day after my big shoe binge, I was killing time in Ross and I found another pair of super cute comfort shoes. They just happened to be a pair that I'd wanted to try on at Macy's but they didn't have them in my size. When I saw them at Ross, I had to get them. They were $22 at Ross and $85 at Macy's so it was a no brainer. They are Aerosoles Beninsula.

Cute huh? The peep toe (which is impossible to see in my photos) just kills me - too adorable. I really wish they were more comfortable. They are very flexible and the heel is nice and sturdy but they aren't leather. By the end of the first day my toes were really pinchy and I couldn't wait to take them off. The second time I wore them it was better but I am worried that they will always hurt a bit, since plastic doesn't stretch like leather. They would have been more of a bargain if they were leather. Oh well. Live and learn.

- - -

Tonight is Halloween. We bought some candy to give away, but we haven't had any trick-or- treaters. This is first time in years I've been home on Halloween night, so maybe I'm doing it wrong? The porch light is on... Is there something else I'm supposed to do? Do city kids even trick-or-treat? I guess they probably all go to the mall or something? Or maybe everyone did thier Halloween stuff Friday and Saturday night?

Hubs and I attended the Zombie Prom on Friday night. He was a calavera and I was a flapper. I took a few quick shots of our costumes before we went out, but I was in a hurry. They are not the greatest snaps ever, but you get the idea.

I am especially excited to show you all my hair-do because, shockingly, it totally worked! I hope that's not too immodest. The fact that my hair worked at all was a miracle as I really had no idea what I was doing.

I dampened the front with product, slapped in some wave clips and let those sit while I put the lower sections in Hot Sticks. I applied some heat to the wave clips with a blow drier, just to be sure that the waved areas set properly. Once the hot rollers were cool, I unrolled the sections and pulled them apart with my fingers, just to fluff them a little. Then I re-rolled them loosely and turned them so that the curls were flat against my head. It was extremely difficult to pin them down and hide the pins at the same time, so I had to re-do the rolls a few times and re-position the curls. I probably still had some pins showing but I tried very hard to camouflage them as much as possible. A good shellacking with hairspray and I was ready to go.

See? Good hair! Amazing!

We had a wonderful time at the prom, although I ended up overindulging a little bit. (Damn you, tequila.) There were so many great (and scary!) costumes. I wish I'd brought my camera. Kim over at The Kim Show has lots of great photos of the event so you really should pop over there and have a look.

Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

New Job, New (Work) Look, New Shoes

After a year of unemployment I finally have a job. Naturally, I celebrated by buying new shoes!

I need new shoes for my new job. No, really, I do. ;)

I've worked for as an assistant to lab scientists for the past ten years, but my new job is at a trade organization that serves the local biotechnology community. That means have to dress a bit more like a professional than I have in the past. I'm trading my jeans, t-shirts and cardigans for skirts, dresses, and blazers so, of course, my Converse are being replaced with footwear that is more office appropriate.

Admittedly, I already have a LOT of shoes and lots that would work in an office setting but most of them are cheaply made. Cheap shoes are, unfortunately, not the most comfortable thing for wearing all day, every day. Luckily, several of the comfort brands have come out with some really cute vintagey options. I am now the proud owner of three new pairs of comfortable office-appropriate shoes!

First I bought a pair of boots to wear while commuting when the autumn rain starts. Fleur's post from last year inspired me to keep an eye out for a pair of modern boots with vintage charm. I think the Arrow boot from Fitzwell, fit the bill nicely. To me, they look like a modern twist on the galoshes that Emily from Livin' Vintage scored at a flea market. If I could find galoshes to fit over my shoes I'd be in heaven!! Until then, I'm happy with these warm and snuggly boots.

* * *

These are Venezia by the brand Sofft. I think they have a very nice basic look that goes well with pencil skirts and pouffy dresses. The best part is, they have actual arch support so I know I can wear these all day without pain.

* * *

These are my favorites! They are Diamond Star from Clarks Artisan line. They have a wonderful '40s look and will be great with trousers and a-line skirts. They are super flexible and comfy and feel like sneakers.

Also, now that I have a job, I can afford to buy notions and linings and...fabric! YAY! Sewing will return to Sewing Is Hard. From my first paycheck, I intend to get my machine tuned up and buy some nice wool blend suiting so that I can whip up a few more office appropriate skirts and maybe a pair of trousers. Stay tuned!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Awesome Neighborhood Thrift Store, Bad Blogger

The Hubs commutes to work every day on his motorcycle down a long stretch of our neighborhood's main street. It's not much of a main street because most of the business cater to the industrial portion of the neighborhood and are primarily hardware stores, dry cleaners and sandwich shops which are only open from 8-5. I would love a little breakfast spot, more restaurants that are open for dinner, and one or two boutiques, but I think I will have to wait a bit. The neighborhood become less industrial in the last few years, but it will be a while before the greater number of shop owners expand their focus to serving the residential population.

Anyway, last week on his way to work The Hubs happened to pass a brand new thrift shop on the main drag, down by the freeway on-ramp. We took a nice long walk on Saturday morning and popped in to see if there were any treasures to be had.

Mrs. Jenkins Clothing Store and More is a lot like a church charity shop: it's not super organized, there is a ton of inventory, and you need to dig to find the good stuff. The prices, however, are amazing. I found two adorable home sewn items: a super cute 60s house dress and and a drop dead gorgeous 50s strapless evening dress in hot red satin brocade with a wing bust. I paid a grand total of $6 for both items. Wow!!

Mrs. Jenkins herself is adorable. She told us that she opened the store on her birthday last month because she's 75 years old and wanted to finally do something for herself. She has gospel music on the boom box just out side the door and a TV on in back by the sales counter and she loves to chat with her customers, which makes for a bit of an intense sensory experience, but she's just so darned sweet and she has some good stuff. You just need to be patient and carefully comb through all the racks. The Hubs and I fell in love with her and will definitely be back in a week or so to see what new treasures she's got in stock.

Here's the '60s house dress. ...I"m pretty sure its '60s... The cut of the collar (which you can't see in the snaps) and the tent-like shape of the dress make me pretty sure that it was cut from a 60s pattern, but the fabric is a gorgeous rayon and it looks '40s to me.

The photos don't do it justice. (I'm still trying to find that perfect photography spot.) It's even cuter in person.

I wish I could show you how incredible the red dress is, (this is the part where I fail as a documentarian) but I only took one stupid camera phone picture, and I can't figure out how to get it out of my phone. ...and I've already given the dress to a friend as it didn't fit me properly. I suppose I could have altered it, but it occurred to me that there was someone out there who would look a zillion times better in it than I.

I saw Kim (of The Kim Show and Vanity's Only Virtue) on Saturday night and told her that I had a dress that I thought would look awesome on her. She stopped by the next day to try it on and I was right. It looked amazing. Really, truly. The color suits her skin and hair so well. It looks like it was made for her. I really should have taken a picture of her in it. I am the worst blogger ever!

OH well. This was a great reminder to always photograph everything if you want to have pretty pictures to add to your blog. Oh, la! If I can ever figure out how to get the damn picture off my phone, I'll add it to this post.

UPDATED: Thanks Sarai!

Friday, October 8, 2010

In Which a Movie Trailer Greatly Improves My Attitude (and a Giveaway)

Sorry 'bout the radio silence. The home improvements are at a bit of a standstill and I haven't been sewing much at all. I'm sort of dying to start a new project but my machine is acting up. Something about the tension isn't right, and I can't seem to get it to cooperate. I think it needs service...which I can't afford.

Honestly, I've been in a bit of a funk. A deep, unpleasant, cobwebby funk.

However, last night a friend and I went to the movies (The Town. Really liked it.) and when we were leaving, I saw a poster for this.

(image found here)

Oh. My. God. I am SO excited. This movie looks like it's gonna be reeeeeely bad, in the best possible way. I can't wait.

Now don't get me wrong, I don't want either of these ladies to suck. I love Cher and she can act. And Xtina? I love her too. Her voice kind of gives me a headache when she's all belty over the top, but when she just sings, I'm floored. Her talent can't be denied. "Beautiful" is inspiring and makes me cry every time.

Even so, I am really hoping for a camp disaster/unintentional comedy classic. By all indications, I think I'm going to get one. Hopefully it'll be Showgirls bad, not Glitter bad...I'd even settle for Coyote Ugly bad.

Here's the trailer. So. Much. Awesome.

And here's the frame-by-frame trailer breakdown from Jezebel. Love!

* * *

So that this post isn't totally Random Junk, there is a sewing related GIVEAWAY over at the Blue Gardenia. You could win this vintage Vogue sewing book and a totally cute handmade pincushion. Drawing ends October 10 at 3:30 pm PDT. Go check it out!

Hopefully I'll be back with a sewing project soon...

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

In Which I Continue My Battle For Cute Workout-gear and Finally Conquer Sweatshirt Fleece

This post contains photos with really terrible lighting...and everything I photographed is black. Not a good combination. I am still working out where to take photos in the new house.


Remember awhile back, I made a shorts jumper inspired by vintage gym-suits? If you recall, I put the zipper in too low and couldn't rip it out again. I added some hook and eyes above the zipper for modesty's sake, but they didn't stay closed properly. Not good. Fighting with hook and eyes while you are trying to work out is not fun. I only wore it to the gym a couple of times before I went back to my old "rock t-shirt and capri leggings" gym style.

I recently bought a new seam ripper at the Japanese dollar store and was amazed at how sharp it was. I decided to see if maybe I could rip out and re-install that zipper with a new sharper seam ripper. It worked! The new tool plus the much better lighting in the new sewing room made it easy to remove the zipper. I re-installed it and now am much more confident about wearing my gym suit.

I also replaced the leg elastic. I used a much wider and longer piece of elastic. The legs no longer climb up and I don't have thigh rolls below the elastic any more. Success!

I was so inspired by the new look of my gym suit, that I decided it was time to make another one. I had a lot of sweatshirt fleece left over and I thought that this 70s jumpsuit pattern would be relatively easy to put together.

I made a sleeveless version with capri length legs. Construction was a breeze. The fleece didn't fight me nearly as much as last time and nothing major went wrong.

I left out all of the facings and, instead, rolled the fleece over at the stay-stitching line and then sewed it down with a zig-zag over a straight stitch. I trimmed off any excess fabric on the inside of the sleeve and it looks great. It's almost like the edges have been serged. Almost. We'll see how well the sleeves and neckline hold up after a few washings.

The final result is a bit more Bananarama than "glamour girl goes to the gym" but I like it.

It's so very comfy and soft: kind of like zip-in pajamas for grown ups. Plus it will make a great last minute Halloween costume, if need be.

I still had a bunch of fleece left over so I made a pair of shorts from this pattern.

Instead of putting elastic at the waist, I used grossgrain ribbon to make a drawstring. I love how it looks! They will be great for dance class...when I can afford to take dance classes again.

I don't know why I had so many problems with fleece the first time I used it. I had no trouble at all this time. Maybe the pattern I used before was too complicated? It's possible that I was just so nervous about using a new material that I made it more complicated than it needed to be. I actually, really liked using fleece to make these two projects and I think it's kinda cool that I can make my own workout wear instead of relying on whatever is on sale at Target.

...and I am seriously considering making big-girl zip-in pajamas.

Yesterday Was My Day on The Blue Gardenia

On Monday I was featured on The Blue Gardenia Learns to Sew Her Blossoms as part of Denise's "sewing spaces" series. Click here to read all about my space. I am so honored to be included along with so many people who I consider to be incredible fiber artists! I guess I'd better get working on my new project, huh? :)

Don't forget that Denise is sponsoring a giveaway for Erica B's favorite sewing book: The Complete Photo Guide to Sewing. Click here to read all about the giveaway!

...aaand if that's not enough exciting Blue Gardenia related stuff, I was just over at Gertie's Blog for Better Sewing and noticed that there is a sale on patterns at The Blue Gardenia. The sale ends at midnight tonight so get to shopping. You'll need to enter the code ILoveGertie at checkout to get the discount. Click here for more details.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Giveaway over at The Blue Gardenia!!!

Denise over at The Blue Gardenia Learns to Sow Her Blossoms is having a giveaway for a super duper extra cool sewing book, The Complete Photo Guide to Sewing. Follow the link above for all the details.

Also, be sure to check Denise's blog on Monday as I will be featured in her series on sewists and their spaces!! Squee! Thanks Denise!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

A New Stove

Not much sewing to speak of lately. I have a few projects floating around my brain but, with the new house creating all sorts of new chores, it's been difficult to sit in the sewing room and concentrate.

I do have exciting sewing-related news though! In the next few weeks I may be featured over at the Blue Gardenia Learns to Sew Her Blossoms as part of Denise's series of posts on home sewists and their spaces. I'll be sure to let you know when/if that happens.

In the mean-time, the Hubs and I have been working on our new house and trying to make it into a home. Unfortunately, things keep breaking. It's a little frustrating, but I've been told that it's just one of those things to expect when you own your own home.

I had PG&E do a free appliance check first-thing after we moved in, and they red-tagged our furnace. That was exciting and expensive to deal with! The first quote we got was just insane and sent the Hubs and I into a bit of a panic. Luckily, we know a lot of people in the trades and were able to get some help with finding a reasonably priced furnace and installation.

If you ever buy a home, you might wanna have the gas company check the furnace out before you start signing papers. Our home inspector missed that it had huge cracks in all of the chambers and was a hazard both for fire danger and carbon monoxide poisoning. It's the kind of expense that would be nice to include in your contingencies, if you can.

PG&E also inspected our stove and discovered that the oven and broiler no longer worked. I can't really live without an oven. One of the things that is making unemployment less sucky is being Suzy Homemaker while I look for work. I bake things for the Hubs to take to his co-workers, and once a week I baby-sit a money-saving roast in the oven all day. Must. Have. Oven.

We thought about getting a vintage stove, but the space between our cabinets is too narrow for any of the vintage stoves we looked at. We don't intend to rip out our cabinets when we remodel our kitchen, so instead we looked for a retro stove that would fit in the space.

I would have really loved to have a stove like this from Big Chill.
Or one like this from Elmira Stove Works.
Unfortunately, these stoves are really expensive! We are on a very tight budget and I don't think we could ever afford either one of those stoves. We ended up with this one from Frigidaire.
Aside from the digital readout, I think it has a retro look not that much different from the Elmira or Big Chill stoves. The cast iron grate that covers the burners is pretty and I think the knobs look vintage. The center burner is another nice retro touch. I had a vintage stove in one of my apartments that had this feature and it's great for things like pancakes. I will be asking for a griddle pan for xmas, I think.

I've been using my new stove and oven for a couple of weeks now and it works great! It's a budget model so it doesn't have a lot of bells and whistles (like self-clean or auto-off) but it cooks and bakes just fine. I like that the grates cover the whole stove because it's really nice to be able to simply slide a heavy pot to the other side of the range without having to pick it up. I've used the center burner quite a bit already. It's especially handy when browning a large roast right in the roasting pan.

Here is a photo of the new stove in its new home in our kitchen.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

In Which a Fail Becomes a Win and I Attend an Event in Something I've Made

We're still trying to get the house into some kind of order. Most of the painting has been done. We tore up some carpet and put in some flooring. ...and that's about it. I keep wanting to show you stuff but nothing is really completely and totally finished.

The sewing room is painted (bright blue with white trim!) and the green linoleum has been covered with carpet that we re-purposed from the living room. All of my sewing stuff is in there and, let me tell you, it is a positively glorious place to sew...but it's still not a finished room. The pocket door needs to be sanded and painted, all the outlet, switch and vent covers need to be replaced (along with some of the plugs), I've got to deal with some furniture that may or may not be staying, and there's really no art on the walls...

The upstairs bathroom has the same issue. It's been cleaned and painted, the horrific 80s light fixture has been replaced...but it's still not really done. I caulked after I painted (rookie move) so I need to do some touch-ups. All the pink stuff I bought (chalkware fish!) to decorate with is too pink because the tile looks peach under the natural light from the light well. Plus I need new towels and there's a shelf that needs to be put up and... Well, you get the picture.

I decided that making curtains for these spaces would make me feel like I was approaching done-ness. I bought white eyelet for the sewing room. I just did four simple panels with rolled hem edges and a fold at the top for the bar to slide through. Easy peasy. See? Pretty curtains.

In the bathroom, I removed the cabinet doors from the cupboard under the bathroom sink in order to paint them and then decided not to put them back on. The doors were so big and the room is so tiny that they made it difficult to get into cabinet without doing a little dance. (Open door part way, step to the side, open further, step forward, bend and search, step back close the door part way, step to the side, close the door.) Of course now all of the junk under the sink is totally exposed and looks horribly messy.

Taking a cue from the catbox cosy I made at the old house, I thought I'd just slap together an easy curtain. Except it didn't really work.

I bought a yard of extremely pale pink cotton broadcloth and, just in case, a yard of red kona cotton. The pink clashed with the tile so it was a no go. The red matched the accent tile above the sink but after I'd cut out and sewn the panels and put them up, I realized that a curtain was just a terrible idea, even temporarily. It just looked lazy and wrong. So wrong that I'm not even going to show you a photo. The only way to deal with the bathroom cabinet is to put in pebble glass sliding doors and it's going to be a while before we have the dough for that.


But wait! Win!

I had just under a yard of eyelet left over and a full yard of uncut pink cotton. What does that spell? Outfit! I watched Swing Shift last month and was inspired by the super cute and girlie summer clothes in the scene on the pier. So, I decided to make my own 40's hot weather outfit. Fogville weather be damned!!

This 1940s pattern again.

I used the leftover eyelet for this blouse and flat-lined it with white muslin from the stash. I love flat-lining! It is so easy and effective! I wish I'd learned this technique long ago.

In order to cut out the shirt and the sleeves with the limited amount of fabric, I had to shorten the shirt considerably. ... to midriff length. No really! Midriff tops weren't that unusual in the 40s. Maybe they were unusual on matronly married ladies but, since I live in the city of eternal adolescence, I refuse to dress like a grownup just yet. (Mutton/lamb, yeah, I know...blah blah blah.)

I decided to try the lingerie elastic idea for the sleeves. I used the rolled hem foot to finish the outer sleeve edge.

Then I pinned the elastic over the hem and stitched it down. Success! Purchased bias tape finished the underarm sleeve edge and the neckline and I added a satin bow at the center neck. To finish the bottom edge of the blouse, I made a casing by folding the hem up and slipping in an elastic band. It was really ridiculously easy, and despite being a teensy bit shorter than I'd envisioned, I like it.

The pink cotton became an a-line skirt using this one-yard skirt pattern.

I love this pattern. Even though it's '60s I think that it works really well as part of a '40s outfit because of the A-line shape. I bag-lined the skirt with some pinky-beige lining from the stash and did my lazy fold-over waistband.
All in all a very successful and cute outfit, I think. My tripod is MIA after the move, so I had to take snaps of myself in the mirror.
The best part is, I had a chance to actually WEAR this outfit in public! Around people! (Because my city is trapped in a perpetual bubble of Autumn, and I only make lightweight cotton clothes, it seems like this never happens!) My dear friend Brigid and I went to the Keep '45 Alive event at the History Park at Kelley Park. It was a wonderfully warm summer day and a super fun event.

A Big Band played and there was an area for dancing in front of the stage. There were quite a few veterans and also several groups of reenactors who all looked very handsome in uniform. There were female reenactors too which got me thinking about possibly making a women's service uniform, although it's pretty daunting. (Blitzkrieg Baby is a great link for further inspiration, if you are curious.)

The history park itself was just amazing. The city of San Jose has moved a whole bunch of old houses and other buildings to this strip of parkland and has created an old fashioned town complete with a village square, churches, family homes, a hotel and a gas station. Each structure contains a different museum dedicated to the people who settled the San Jose area. It's so cool. I hope that there are more vintage events here in the future!

I am so terrible at taking photos at events. I bring my camera and then I'm too shy to use it. These are the only snaps I got.
Unfortunately, after something like three hours in the car (thanks to stupid Fogville traffic) I was pretty rumpled by the time we arrived. Even so, I got some nice compliments on my outfit. What a fun day!!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Hair Fail

So... I have gray hair. I used to be a natural redhead long ago, but no more. For a while I went "strawberry blonde" because it was so much easier to hide the gray, but I like being really red so much better. With red-red hair I feel more like myself.

The super red isn't that hard to keep up, now that I have a system. I usually do a root touch up every four weeks and then two weeks after that, I hit it with Manic Panic or some other vegetable based dye to really bump up the color. That means I'm doing some sort of treatment every two weeks. Hopefully my hair won't all fall out! My hair actually feels really healthy but with all this processing I do feel like I'm tempting fate.

Anyway, now that I've got a system it usually works pretty well. Neither process takes that long and I'm even getting better at not dying the whole bathroom red. Of course sometimes I make stupid mistakes. The last time I did my root touch up, I really screwed up.

I did my root touch-up on a Sunday and three days later I set my hair for the first time in ages. (It just been too much to deal with since we've been moving house!) While separating the sections I noticed a little spot of gray. I wasn't too worried at first. I usually miss a spot, but its never too big so I don't worry about it. Then I looked closer.

Somehow I managed to miss a GIANT spot. Basically, the entire right side of my crown is still TOTALLY gray. I can't believe it. Well, I guess I know why there was so much dye left over this time: I was squeezing the bottle, but somehow managed to avoid getting dye on my head!!!!

It's pretty upsetting. This is the best picture I could get. It's blurry, but I think you can see how bad it is. Ick!

Its a pity. I was really liking the way my set came out, too.

Knowing there's all that untamed gray lurking in there kind of ruins it. :(

I hate to do another process just for one (enormous) spot, but I'm really not sure how else to proceed. If I do another root touch-up so soon, then I should probably forgo the color boost and that will leave me looking brassy. Ugh!!! I will probably just do nothing and hope that the gray stays hidden until I touch up my roots next month.

Sigh. Has this ever happened to you? Please share your home hair dye horror stories so I don't feel so bad.