Monday, May 31, 2010
Well, my trusty laptop Spock has been shipped out for maintenance...the screen wasn't lighting up anymore. I've been using P's computer instead, and I thought I might take a break from blogging for a while. But apparently I like blogging even more than I realized.
One of the main reasons I returned is because of this website. It was mentioned on the groupthink thread on Jezebel, and I checked it out of curiosity.
Oh my goodness. The Day Zero Project appeals to several facets of my personality- primarily the list-making and the constant need to set goals for myself. The theory of the project is to set 101 specific, attainable goals that you can reach within 1,001 days (or roughly three years).
I sat down for about two hours or so and hammered out a list that I'm reasonably happy with. It all centers on things I really want to achieve, and I think three years is more than decent time to do everything.
I'm excited. Really, really excited.
Wednesday, May 12, 2010
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
Kat came over and we enjoyed lunch from Panera and a movie marathon. It's nice to spend time with my friends without school or work interfering.
She introduced me to a game called Dark Parables: The Curse of Briar Rose. It's a PC search-and-find game based on Sleeping Beauty. It's terribly addicting, and I beat the easy level in a few hours.
It's very atmospheric and appeals to the logic side of my brain. And it also piqued my interest towards my ideas for a Sleeping Beauty-inspired novel. I've dabbled in it on and off since my sophomore year of high school, but playing the game gave me some great ideas.
Also, the princess will be named Faustina. I think it's pretty.
Monday, May 10, 2010
Top: Ann Taylor Loft Petites (thrifted)
Skirt: Barefoot in the Park skirt, handmade (self-drafted pattern)
Shoes: Jessica Simpson
Scent: Vera Wang Glam Princess
I found the top at Goodwill for $4.29, but I got it half-price. It's a super thin knit shirt from Ann Taylor Loft Petites. It fits perfectly...the only problem was that it had holes all over the bottom.
I solved it pretty easily, though. I turned the shirt inside out, folded it all the way around at the center of the hole-y area, pinned it, and pressed it.
Then I sewed a seam all the way around, creating a tuck. and pressed it down. Voila! Now it looks like a design feature.
Also, the holes are completely disguised. SWEET.
I already talked about sewing the skirt here, but I have to say it's ridiculously comfortable. And it makes me look thinner, which is always a plus.
Also, the shoes belonged to my sister, who outgrew them. She's four years younger than me.
I've been waiting for a long, long, LONG time for her new album, and My Best Friend Is You finally dropped last month. My friend Rose and I have been listening the crap out of it.
Kate Nash has a very fun, very quirky style, with all sorts of sometimes silly, sometimes deep lyrics. There's something very childlike and lighthearted about her music...although she can oftentimes swear like a sailor. It's all part of her charm.
This is one of my favorite songs from her new album. It's called "Do-Wah-Doo," and I really want one of those vintage flight attendant uniforms.
Sunday, May 9, 2010
The front bands are too long and loose, the waistband is all wonkified, the hem is crazy, and did I mention that I took it in by about 4" on each side and it was still too large?
Yes. A rousing fail.
It just goes to show you that not every sewing project is a winner. Oh, well. I'll give it another go soon, just to prove to myself that I'm not stupid...
Made: November of 2008
Made for: Barefoot in the Park callbacks
Materials: black and purple plaid wool
Time to Make: about an hour
My sister brought me about a yard of purple and black wool when she cleaned out the costume closet at her high school. It was too pretty to waste, but I didn't know what to make with such a small amount.
When I was getting ready for Barefoot in the Park callbacks (I was called back for the mother), I pulled out this fabric and whipped the skirt together in just about an hour. It's my first high waisted skirt, which makes me a little nervous, seeing as how I am large of boob. It actually looked rather nice on me.
I haven't worn it in a while, but I've lost some weight since then, and I'm hoping it fits even better when I wear it to work tomorrow.
Here's the back view. The skirt fastens with a zipper and a hook-and-eye tab disguised by two large buttons. I used white because it was the only color in my stash.
It's still one of my favorite pieces, but I'm debating about it. The knit fabric is a little on the worn side (like I said, it's a favorite piece) and I don't think the bubble does much for my figure. But at the same time, it's super comfortable and still cute.
Top: American Eagle
Dress: Forever 21
Shoes: Target children's department
Bag: Harajuku Lovers via Kohl's
Scent: Bath and Body Works Black Amethyst
I really need to take more risks with accessories. Of course, that means I need to actually get accessories...any good recommendations?
(from Ladies Home Journal)
Your Style Is: Classically ChicYou're a woman who loves her life -- you've worked hard to get where you are, and you're darn proud of it! You are brimming with confidence and assertiveness, and friends and colleagues know that if they need help solving a problem, you're the woman to see.
Looking pulled-together at all times is a priority for you. That's why you rely on classic, simple items that don't require a lot of thought and have timeless style.
Your wardrobe staples:
- Several impeccably-cut suits in neutral shades of navy, black, charcoal, and chocolate. Buy pants and skirts for more options.
- Tailored button-down oxfords. They look great under a jacket, and just as good paired with weekend jeans.
- Cashmere crewneck sweaters. Stock up on sleeveless versions for summer, long-sleeved ones for winter.
- Glossy leather pumps with a manageable heel of 1 to 2 inches.
- Man-style oxfords to wear with pants.
- A stainless steel tank watch, which goes with everything.
(from Quiz Rocket)
that helps a lot)
Style role models include Winona Ryder, Nicole Kidman and Helena Bonham Carter.(from Style.com)
I love timeless, elegant styles: a flat front trouser, a well-cut suit jacket, a luxurious cashmere sweater, a frame purse, a midheeled black pump. When I try on a garment, I am as interested in how it feels on my body as I am in how it looks. My favorite pieces were handed down to me from my grandmother or discovered at my favorite vintage store. I wear them year in and year out. After all, good taste never goes out of style!
(from Daily Fashion)
Sweater sets and khaki's are a major part of your expanding Jcrew and GAP wardrobe. You like to stay updated with the up and coming fashion styles but you don't go too crazy! You tend to buy clothes that will stay in fashion for more than a season and ones that you can mix and match!
Although the bright colors, leather and the bohemian styles don't exactly flow with your own personal style you still find room in your wardrobe to stay hip with the changing trends.
Your "good girl" look pleases your mother but is also timeless and fashionable. People realize that you care about what you look like, but not at the expense of expensive clothes that are only fashionable for one season!
We at DailyFashion.com say "Go Girl!" You have chosen a style that is simple, fashionable and timeless but that won't put you out a pretty penny either! Your preppy style gives guys the impression that you are sweet and innocent but with a little mystery to match!
(from Ok Cupid)
40% Flamboyance, 56% Originality, 55% Deliberateness, 50% Sexiness
See? See? This does nothing for me. Nothing. I'm apparently a classically chic, romantic, frumpy, preppy, glamorous soul. I have no idea what I am!
Did any of these quizzes nail you, or are you as confused as I am?
(Also, I would just like to say that I can only spell "glamorous" by singing the Fergie song of the same name in my head.)
Saturday, May 8, 2010
Shoes: Earth Spirit
Scent: Miss Dior Cherie
Since it was my first time to wear it, I didn't feel the need to remix it a whole bunch. But I have an oh-maz-ing owl belt that will look fabulous with it.
Also, I think this project is really helping me with my goal to get in better shape. I'm very uncomfortable in all of these pictures...I think once I feel like I look better, I'll be more at ease.
Friday, May 7, 2010
Boots: Target's children's department
Necklace: a gift from my husband's best friend (and the best man at our wedding); he bought it in San Francisco
Headband: Snitched from my sister
Scent: Abercrombie and Fitch
I have a funny story about the A&F perfume. I've only entered one of their stores once, when I was fifteen. I was in the middle of my rabid anime geek phase, and had just purchased a Naruto headband (this was in 2003ish, before it was cool). My friends dragged me in Abercrombie, and I rebelled by tying on my headband and loudly complaining that the store smelled.
(I was a delight to be around in middle school/early high school. Seriously.)
But P was working at the mall in another store, and one day he was cleaning up after the mall had closed only to find a forgotten bag containing a newly purchased bottle of $65 Abercrombie and Fitch girl's perfume. There was no lost and found he could take it to and his store was just going to toss it, so he brought it to me. It actually smells nice on me...although I won't be purchasing a new one when it runs out.
Tomorrow I'm working open-to-close at the bridal shop, but I might be running out to see newly-graduated friends. So I'm going to wear the Indie Darling dress from Modcloth. It is love in navy and ruffles.
Thursday, May 6, 2010
But really, if you've never seen Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, you ought to. It's chock full of gems like this:
"In the beginning, the universe was created. This made a lot of people angry and has been widely regarded as a bad move."
Sartorial choices are hard to find- the main character, Arthur Dent, wears a bathrobe for the entire film- but the humor is wonderful, especially Alan Rickman as the adorably depressed Marvin. And Zooey Deschanel plays Trillian, so the cool factor is upped by several points.
So, in short, if you feel like watching an enjoyable British sci-fi movie, this one is excellent.
And if you ever wake up to find that the Earth is about be blown up to make way for a intergalactic super highway, grab your towel, stick out your thumb, and most importantly:
I get inspired by movies, music, and books more than anything else. And right now, I've been rereading one of my favorite books.
I read A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett for the first time when I was about six or seven. I adored Sara Crewe- she was and is one of my particular childhood heroines. My parents gave me a beautiful copy of the book for my birthday...the inscription is dated 1998, so I must have been turning eleven.
My mother insisted on finding me the version illustrated by Tasha Tudor. She illustrated many classic children's books, and her version of A Little Princess is just gorgeous. Her illustrations are very pretty, very sweet renderings in colored pencil that make me want to sit in an English garden and drink up the sunshine.
One of her illustrations has really caught my eye. I've loved the cover of A Little Princess for years, and lately it's inspired me to sketch out a couple of dress designs.
There's a full version of the illustration inside the book, and it's really gotten my attention.
Things that I've noticed:
-gray, soft blue, and rose pink
-soft pleats and gathering
-open necklines or a shirtwaist front
What has inspired you today?
I had the day off from work, so I grabbed lunch with my friend Rose and we went thrifting. I had a pretty exciting haul (as well as a story about the romper from hell). I just wanted to be cool and comfortable. And I was, but unfortunately I don't look very comfortable in the picture.
Necklace: made by a friend
Sunnies: sale on campus
Bag: Harajuku Lovers
Scent: American Eagle 77
These shorts are incredibly comfortable. I bought them last summer to wear to the Disney parks when I wasn't working...at the Disney parks.
Tomorrow- depending on how much I get done on my sewing list- I might wear a purple plaid skirt. It all depends on how fast I sew...
And it's not like I've never blogged before. I actually maintained a blog for about two years, writing about school and theater and my wedding and working in Orlando. I just got the urge to start something new, and here I am.
I went for a walk today, and with plenty of time to think, I mused about my blogging. And I think I know why I started this.
I've gone through a lot of changes in a very short amount of time. Since last December, I performed my last university role, graduated from college, got my first "grown up" job, got married, and moved out of the house. That's a lot of upheaval in the span of five months.
And in those five months, I've gone from someone who identified herself as a single girl, a student, and an actress. Now I'm just your average housewife...and I don't want to be that.
I have always been stubborn and fiercely independent, and getting engaged never changed that. Don't get me wrong- I feel that getting married was the right thing for me to do, and I love P dearly. But while we were engaged, we were at separate schools an hour apart. I could still stay out late, spend hours in rehearsal, and lounge around my private room. Now I'm living in a rather small apartment, married, and without classes or rehearsals to go to. While P and I still have our separate friends and hobbies, I am still rebelling a bit against the fact that I am a wife.
I think I have to re-identify myself, especially when it comes to my hobbies. I've been in theater since I was three years old; I've been involved with 34 different productions. The last time I went a full year without being involved with a show I was in kindergarten. I feel a bit lost without the constancy of auditions, memorizing lines, showing up at rehearsals. And I definitely miss the camaraderie.
I think I'm blogging to find myself. And I think that's why I started a new blog, rather than continuing the old one. My original blog was full of college-girl insecurities and problems that I don't deal with anymore. My life is completely different, and I think I needed a new outlet.
And I think that I'm turning to fashion as a way of expressing myself, now that I no longer have a reliable source of theater. Well, fashion and writing. I have a lot of novels and short stories tumbling round in my head right now...
So that's that.
Although, before I close this entry, I just want to reiterate one last point. Yes, I am stubborn and independent, but I am also completely sure that I was meant to get married, and meant to be married to P. No amount of stubbornness can change that fact.
So far I only have two listings: a custom stomacher gown, and a custom chemise a la reine. I'll add the ruffled frock gown, standard frock gown, and pinner apron as well, but right now I have other things to do. Like picking out an awesome outfit, and getting ready to go thrifting.
But in the meantime, please visit here!:
Wednesday, May 5, 2010
Get ready earlier and take pictures in the sunshine, when my makeup is still fresh and I'm not frazzled from an eight-hour alterations shift.
Patrick is no longer allowed to take my pictures for me. Case in point:
Skirt: Old Navy
Shoes: American Eagle (a gift from the hubster)
Necklace: Handmade by a friend (although her Etsy shop is currently on hiatus)
Scent: Bath and Body Works Pink Grapefruit
Gah. P is NOT ALLOWED to take my pictures anymore!
But on the upside, I just remembered there's a tripod at my parents' house. Perfectly aligned photos will soon be mine!
I have never really been considered fashionable. My childhood was spent in whatever my mother dressed me in- it wasn't until middle school that I realized that my high-waisted straight-leg jeans and tucked-in polo shirts were dorky. I have always been self-conscious, so I spent the next few years trying vainly to dress like my peers.
In the middle of my freshman year of high school we moved to northern Kentucky, right on the border of Ohio, and I entered a new school for the first time since kindergarten. And this new school required uniforms. The next two and a half years were fun for me- collecting neutral-colored but exciting shoes, wearing mismatching socks and crazy earrings, and dolling up my incredibly long hair.
However, we moved to Tennessee two weeks before my senior year of high school started. Now I had to follow a strict dress code...I would have preferred to have a uniform. I wore dress pants and collared shirts day in and day out for that entire year.
When college hit, I was attacked by the freshman...well, thirty-five or so, and launched into an up-and-down weight battle that is still going on. I wore ill-fitting jeans (even short lengths are too long on me) and lots of knit tops from the junior's department.
Yes, I wanted pretty clothes, but I didn't know what I was looking for. In fact, I still don't.
All I know for sure is that I want a wardrobe that I can mix-and-match, and I want it to be primarily dresses. I discovered in my last year of school that I was much more comfortable and felt more like myself when I wore dresses instead of pants, and I've only worn jeans three times so far this year.
Unfortunately, my wardrobe isn't very well planned. I need to design outfits that can go together from the beginning, and then start mixing and matching from there. The thing is, I don't know what I want.
A lot of people can define their style: preppy, punk, rocker chic, trendy, vintage. What's mine? Eclectic, I guess, which is a nice way of saying that nothing I own goes together.
I have to embark on a planned journey towards a real style. And believe me, I've read the books about "what fashion staples every woman needs." But what do I need with khaki slacks and oxfords?
I've found a starting point...but I hope it's not too creepy. I've just been a huge fan of The Clothes Horse for about a year now, and I've realized that her style is the closest to what I'd like to wear. I've been rereading her blog archives and studying the pieces that she has, trying to figure out what pieces I need to look for.
Like I said...it's kind of stalkerish. But I'm really fashionably desperate. And I love her style.
The big thing is that I NEED TO AVOID EBAY. Plain and simple. If I go on ebay, I bid. "What harm is one bid?" I think to myself.
And then I've placed bid after bid after bid...and I win them. Then I must pay. Gah.
Plus, I succumbed to the siren song of JoAnn's. This is the first time I've gone to the one in Madison, and I am completely impressed. Their fabric selection is wider and has better quality cuts than the one in Cool Springs. I think it's because the Cool Springs one is busier.
I went in with a list...and came out with a completely different list of projects to be made. I'm actually happier with these fabrics than my original plan, but still.
I think I need to plan my shopping trips better, rather than constantly changing what I'm looking for. I've created a list of basics that I need to look for...maybe that will help me create outfits that look pretty and cohesive.
In the meantime, I'm going to plan my outfit for tomorrow. I'm working an afternoon-to-close shift...and it's probably going to be hot. So...skirt and tee shirt? Yes, skirt and tee shirt.
But in the meantime, I'm terribly in love with this pattern:
Gorgeous and versatile.
(and I've had it for a month or two already...)
Tuesday, May 4, 2010
I have to dress rather conservatively for my job at the bridal shop. That dress has seen better days- I wore it a lot to work on sets and in the shop- but the cobalt color is just so bright and punchy. Pairing it with a lot of black makes me feel like a high school drama queen- the star of every production who takes herself too seriously.
Do I look at bit frazzled? I had finished an eight-hour shift in alterations, then went fabric shopping for some new projects, then wrestled with post-flood traffic...a lot of Nashville roads are still closed.
Good news: Turns out my crappy camera does have a timer. It was a present for my nineteenth birthday, and I just now realized that.
(item: I am twenty-three years old right now.)
Bad news: My camera promptly died whilst taking a picture, and didn't save the file properly. And I have to leave for work.
Ergo, no outfit picture until this evening.
In the meantime, please enjoy this video of a man getting hit in the face by a water balloon.
Bad news: My husband is asleep, and my camera doesn't have a timer. So this might have to wait until this evening, after eight hours at work and a trip to JoAnn's (I'm out of machine needles).
In the meantime, please enjoy this video of a rabbit opening an envelope.
Monday, May 3, 2010
In any case, our apartment is rather small and there isn't much space for me to lay out an outfit. Luckily, I found the perfect spot.
I got an adjustable dressform for my college graduation in December, and I don't know how I lived without it. Sewing is so much easier without trying to pin darts on your own back. Her name is Giselle, and she's one of the most amazing things ever.
In any case, there's my outfit for tomorrow. If it's good enough, I might even post it on Wardrobe Remix.
Or I might chicken out.
Also, that's totally Whose Line Is It Anyway? on the television in the background. It's still one of my favorite shows...but I can't watch it with my best friend anymore. She's seen all the episodes and can (and will) quote along.
I've dabbled with owning an Etsy shop, but it's never been very successful. I'd really like to sell things I've made and offer commissioned costumes...I just don't know what I'm going to call it.
If I ever design an original line of clothing, I have a name for it. But should I go ahead and make a new Etsy shop for it, while the current (meager) shop languishes? Or should I just spruce up the current one?
This was taken two months ago...I'm somewhere in the 140s. I really don't want to weigh myself...because I know that I've gained some happy newlywed weight recently.
My lightest weight was the summer of 2009, when I was around 137.
I was working at Disney's Hollywood Studios at the time, which meant that I spent all day walking. Walking walking walking. Pair that with a steady diet of applesauce and Lean Cuisine frozen meals, plus about three or four bottles of water a day, and you can betcha the weight just slipped off.
But I have a history of gaining weight. I was in the 160s as a freshman in college, then dropped about 20-30 pounds. It slowly crept back up during sophomore year, so I spent junior year losing about ten of those new pounds. Senior year was full of waffling- I ranged between the 140s and the 150s, on average.
Now consider these numbers with the fact that I'm only five feet tall. Yeah. It's pretty ridiculous.
I showed this picture of me at my heaviest weight to my friend Erin, and she said, "Wow...Caitlin comes in many different sizes."
I vowed I would never get to that point again, and I haven't. But I do know that if I'm not careful, I could get there. Especially since P and I are thinking about having children in a few years. I'd like to be slim and healthy before I pack on the baby weight...hopefully that would make losing the weight even easier.
My goal weight is 115 lbs. My doctor recommended that I should be between 100-120, and I think that with my build I should stay somewhere in the middle. So it's time to bust out the exercise DVDs.
I also suspect that I'm developing an intolerance for lactose. It runs in my family, so I'm not surprised, but maybe cutting down on rich dairy products will help the weight drop off.
And once I reach my goal weight...I think I'll get myself a tattoo. I think that'll be a nice reward.
You see, it all began back in November of 2009, when I was designing a flotilla of colonial gowns for my university's Lighting of the Green. I watched one of my favorite Georgian films, Sofia Coppola's Marie Antoinette, for inspiration.
Most colonial gowns are depicted as either simple work frocks with a rounded or squared collar, or elaborate gowns with a triangular piece in the bodice front called a stomacher. A lot of them- particularly in Marie Antoinette- looked like this.
But I got a little tired and a little overwhelmed at the idea of making a dozen dresses like that. Not only are they elaborately decorated, but it meant that I would have create an overdress with a stomacher that snapped in and out (authentic dresses were tied or pinned), plus a petticoat. Daunting to draft, and daunting to fit.
However, when these dresses came onscreen, I rejoiced.
Following the birth of her children, Marie Antoinette's husband gave her a manor called Petit Trianon. The young queen spent a great deal of time there playing country maiden, and she introduced a whole new style of dressing.
Court dresses were usually silk, velvet, or satin; they required stays (the precursor to corsets), hoops and panniers, and layers of petticoats. The new fashions were simple loose dresses with long full skirts and stays were optional. This style was called "la chemise a la reine" (the queen's dress) and paved the way for the empire dresses of Jane Austen fame.
I sewed a chemise a la reine for one of the Lighting of the Green girls. It was just a simple white muslin dress with ruffles on the collar and sleeves, but I absolutely loved it. In fact, I was terribly jealous.
I based the style off of the dress pictured above, but took a hint from this costume used in the movie as well:
I love the barest hint of pastel blue in the gown. For the gown I sewed, I used a pink cotton to line the skirt and add some volume, and tied a double-faced satin ribbon as a sash. Simple but elegant.
The actress loved the gown. She said it was incredibly comfortable, and she was able to layer underneath it (Lighting of the Green is an outdoor event that takes place in December). It was very flattering on her, and while I was sad to see it go, I'm glad that it has entered the university costume shop.
My friend Rose is a tremendous fan of Jane Austen, particularly of the BBC adaptations of her books. We've been planning some sort of Jane Austen event, where we dress up in regency-era gowns, have a picnic, and watch several of the movies during a sleepover. I have a plain white muslin dress that I made to play Jane Austen for a project, but I think a new gown may very well be in order.
My only question: should I use pink again? I like blue, but I have far too many blue costumes already. Apple green? Pale yellow or cream?
Maybe I'll just use the pink again.
Sunday, May 2, 2010
I peeked around to see what ingredients we had, and came up with this little beauty.
Chicken (canned or leftover)
Mexican seasoning (like Emeril's)
Cheese, shredded or sliced
Salsa (I used mild tequila lime)
Now you have to do this:
If using canned chicken, drain and break up large chunks. If using cooked chicken (I used leftover butter roasted chicken from the other night), dice into small pieces. Toss in a skillet coated in butter spray, sprinkle with Mexican seasoning, and cook until thoroughly warmed.
Spread tortilla chips on a plate and cover with cheese. Microwave for about a minute or until cheese is melted. Top with cooked chicken, sour cream, and salsa.
(I accompanied mine with a glass of cold pineapple juice.)
It made a lot more than I expected, but P loved them and finished them off for me. I'll probably end up making them again!
...and somewhere in between.
I've teased it...
...and curled it...
...and once wore it in braids every day for five months because of work.
Not to mention all the times I've dyed and highlighted it (bleach streaks, blonde streaks, red streaks, Little Mermaid red, ash blonde, dark brown...and one unfortunate time, jet black).
For my wedding in March of 2010, I grew it long and stripped all of the dye jobs out (poor hair).
But after keeping it long (and admittedly shaggy...I didn't trim it as often as I should have) for several years, I got tired of it and cut it off about a week after the wedding. I went to a little shop in Green Hills and chopped off seven inches.
That helped, but I wanted layers. Being a poor newlywed, I decided to break out my own scissors and give it a shot. First I cut my bangs so they would be thick and even.
Then...well, I wish I could say that I proceeded with caution and careful planning, but instead I took the scissors to my head with reckless abandon. I just kept cutting off bits until I had trimmed everything and cut in lots of flippy layers.
Although it was a scary thing to do, I absolutely love how it turned out. Plus, my hair curls really well now!
And a depiction of the aftermath: