Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Sequin Dresses

In grandma's "larder," I found a big length of all-over sequined black fabric! I can't find a good pattern to make it with, and it's such thick and intimidating fabric, with no stretch, that I don't really want to wing it. I want a simple racer-back tank dress, short and sparkly. French Connection had one, but it appears to be sold out. This is a less-good substitute for the one that I saw in a magazine, which was shorter, lower-cut, with narrower straps, and racier in all ways.

I like the back of this tank from Urban Outfitters.

But this one is even better! Because it's black, I guess. I can't find a pattern for a basic but modern tank-- not too wide of straps, placed just right, and cut narrow in the back.

This is from Anthropologie. I think it fits better with my last post about embellishments but I thought I'd throw it in here with the sequin inspiration.

Another perfectly-cut tank from JCrew, with all-over sequins. You can't see it so well in the black, and they look like softer, smaller sequins, but it deserves to be included for the shape. Just picture this, (slightly) longer, with huger, more gaudy sequins, and that's what I want.

This dress is looser than what I'm going for but gorgeous. It's by Hoss Intropia’s Spring/Summer 2010 collection, which I learned from the blog Lace & Tea, and I found it originally on {this is glamorous}.

Draping & Fabric Flowers

I'm visiting my grandma, who is an excellent seamstress with two sewing machines and a basement full of fabric and notions, but I needed a lot of inspiration-gathering. I'd like to make a soft knit jersey top with some kind of embellishment-- gathers, flowers, maybe sequins. These pictures are from Anthropologie except the ones on models, which are from JCrew. This top one I found a year ago while I was doing the same thing. Last year I learned how to make millinery flowers out of fabric, and I made a few. One simple one out of felt is pinned to my hat, but the more elaborate one sits in my drawer because I made it out of an old dingy white t-shirt. Gross.

Love this one below because of the defined waist.

I love the drippy look of these sequins. We saw dozens of shirts similar to this in the stores recently.
Way out of my skill range, but lovely.
I think this red one is my favorite.
I saw this one in the store! It is bits of folded fabric appliqued on, rather than embroidery. Unfortunately the underside of the embellished part is very stiff and bumpy; it should have been lined on the inside.
The smocking is a little too much, but the flowers are pretty.
I tried on a lot of on-sale printed knit tops, which are no longer up on their website. Grandma doesn't have much fabric in soft, printed (florals, bright colors, abstract designs) knits that are so popular in stores. They are probably pretty cheaper-- grandmas prints are often woven in, and the knits are more substantial. In a way, I like the thin drape of the "store-bought" fabric, but I tried on a top in Anthropologie that had a cowl neck and wide bat-wing sleeves, and it doesn't look very good when the wrong, unprinted side of the fabric shows in all those drapes. Nevertheless, I like the drapey front of this blouse and the fact that it has a defined waistline. (My cousin says that because I am young and skinny I can get away with all kinds of loose blousy styles, but for sex appeal I still like a defined feminine figure.)
Speaking of retro sex appeal, I just saw a blouse a lot like this one on a picture of Joan from Mad Men. Did you know the actress is not a natural redhead?
Another secretary-ish blouse, now from JCrew. Very pretty, no?
I've mentioned before that I am sick of JCrew's obsession with ruffles, but this is just over-the-top enough (pink! ruffles! flowers!) to be awesome.
This is the first shirt I downloaded, and is probably closest to what I'm going to come up with: a simple tee adorned with fabric flowers. But none of that scratchy-looking tulle, yuck. And in light blue. I'll post pictures when I'm done!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Wintery Goodness

I'm planning a New Year's Eve party, so this post is some accumulated images of sparkly winter goodness, party-related or just pretty. Top photo is from unruly things, which came in turn from style me pretty, which came from wedding photographer Steve DePino. Whew! I hate listing links like that, but it's nice to share blogs and one must give proper credit where credit is due. Can you believe it's from a wedding? My cousin, who I have been visiting, is newly engaged and I wasted some time reading Bride magazine, which is an ABOMINATION, and if I ever get engaged I don't want any bridal magazines anywhere near me because they make me feel terrified and inadequate.

This is from fieldguided, a lovely blog from a girl in Toronto (hooray! for my fellows in the Great White North). The fairy flower paper lamp is the Tord Boontje Midsummer Lamp, and I want one.

Wouldn't it be nice to curl under here for some tea in that cute heart mug? I have a white down comforter and this makes me want to put up my Ikea mosquito netting around my bed even though my room is teeny tiny. The netting curtains were only $6, but I haven't taken them out of the wrapping--impulse buy. This photo and the next to are from {this is glamourous}. They are all by Anna Inghardt , whose flickr stream is just full of all-white snowy Swedish dreamy stuff. While I'm in proper citation mode, I might as well give the secondary source, the blog Quenchant of the Curious. Shall I put in it APA format, or do you prefer Chicago Style? (I know I do!)I hate having a cat, but I like them in principle.
Nothing like day-long winter car (or worse, Greyhound bus) rides to make you want a soft white fluffy bed to lie down in!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Draped Skirts

Happy Christmas! Over break I keep noticing these gorgeous draped skirts and dresses.
Bill Cunningham (whose voice I loathe) from the New York Times style video series On the Street, did a video about "the look," which is (apparently) draped dresses and statement heels.Next, I saw a cute one in Lucky Magazine. They feel the need to tell us "how to" wear them with a fitted sweater, but not where the skirt came from. Or, more importantly, what is the incredible background behind this girl? I bet I could find it if I religiously checked street style blogs-- Copenhagen Street Style blog was cited as the credit for another photo in the same issue. Are magazines too cheap now to take their own photos but must cull them from blogs? No wonder print magazines are going under (I know it's a chicken-and-egg question, but still.)

Next! This is from the lovely Alix from The cherry blossom girl. I kinda hate her because her sole occupation seems to be prancing around Paris in "the aura of her loveliness" (I stole that phrase from the last book I read-- Master of the Delta by Thomas H. Cook-- it wasn't very good-- read my review-- but it got me through a 16 hour car ride with my family in winter in a Camry from beautiful South Carolina to snowy miserable Wisconsin) and taking photos of herself looking cute. She might be a "stylist" for photographers, which seems like an unnecessary, if dreamlike, job (no insult meant to any stylists, I am just jealous). Also, final tangent: I lover her shoes and want some heels with a built-in platform. I tried some on in Target and they were the most comfortable heels I have ever put on.
Next is Alexander Wang, via NYT. The only thing I like here is the skirt, but he's pretty cool. The ripped tights, NO. The scary demon eyeliner, NO. The leather vest.... maybe.... NO. Since I'm in a poorly organized, run-on sentence, aside mood, NYT also has an article that claims that understated is the new sexy. As in: the old sexy was the "shoulder-baring voluptuousness of Scarlett Johansen" but the new sexy is tougher, leather jackets, leggings, "down and dirty," etc. More on this later, I'm feeling pressured to do puzzles with my family and am getting very nervous they'll make fun of me.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Looking Dorky

Here is a picture of me looking super dorky last Christmas. I had to wear my glasses all winter last year because of some mysterious dry eye phenomenon, but I took care of that. I still wear my grandpa's old ski sweater and a much-too-small Land's End down vest, and I wear that purple scarf every day, so chances are that I will look equally dorky this year.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

New Years?

Is it trashy that I really want the disco ball bra Lady Gaga is wearing in the Just Dance video? It probably is. I still want it.

At home in Chapin

I'm at my parents house in South Carolina, reading magazines & tiring my dog out on long walks. My computer has been slowly dying over the past month and so I have had trouble making a new post, although I tried to several times while I should have been working on my final papers.

I saw this picture on The Selby, and I really want a whiskey shelf! Esp. on a rough beam, in a barn.