Sunday, September 28, 2014

Third Dress of the Year Made By Me!

Hello Kittens!

I'm happy to announce I just finished my third dress sewing project of the year! The dress itself I actually finished a few weeks ago but took a while to find the right belt buckle to go with it. And because this was my first belt I've ever made, once I got the belt buckle, it took me a week or two later to get myself to actually go for it and make the belt. The pattern notion listing called for a 2 inch belt kit but because I couldn't find any belt kits in the stores I decided to just make this belt with thick interfacing which turned out alright. I realized I could have easily just bought a red belt or used a red belt from one of my other dresses but I really wanted to try making my own.

Overall, I'm very happy with the way the dress turned out as a whole! This was my first "intermediate" dress pattern for this year. For this pattern I learned how to use interfacing, learned how to make my own belt, and practiced gatherings. 

I used Butterick 6582 and decided to make it in a red gingham print. I was sad that I missed out on Trashy Diva's red gingham Trixie dress last year so have been really looking forward all year to working on and completing this dress.

Third Dress Of The Year Made By Me, Butterick 6582- Front View

Third Dress Of The Year Made By Me, Butterick 6582- Front View

Third Dress Of The Year Made By Me, Butterick 6582- Side View

Third Dress Of The Year Made By Me, Butterick 6582- Back View

Third Dress Of The Year Made By Me, Butterick 6582- Close Up

Third Dress Of The Year Made By Me, Butterick 6582- Close Up

Vintage Belt Buckle From Etsy

Butterick 6582

Third dress of the year down... only one more dress this year to finish before I meet my goal of four dresses made this year. Time to get cracking!

Friday, September 26, 2014

Trashy Diva Dress Reviews: The Maria, The Lena Sarong, and The 1940's Flutter Dress In The New Trashy Diva Prints

I can hardly believe that I have acquired all these Trashy Diva dresses in these new prints!

When I saw these prints introduced on their website I thought for sure I would have to wait til next Christmas for their Christmas sales to see what was left over in my size.

They first came out their Crepe Myrtle print and it was gorgeous! But I waited too long and The Ashley dress I wanted in that print sold out in my size.

Then they came out with their Blue Hawaii print which was so classic and so beautiful. But once again I waited, hoping they would have some left in December... and the Lena Sarong I loved was completely sold out!

Then they came out with their Seersucker and Chambray dresses! Oh they were killing me!!! But luckily at that time I was already working on my own seersucker dress which was red and white rather than their navy and white so I was okay with letting this pass even though it was so hard.... and I wasn't that into the Chambray.... Also, to be fair, when these first came out I decided to buy myself the Trashy Diva Apple Pie dress-- a design from last year which was getting increasingly hard to find and increasingly sold out from TD and outside vendors. The Apple Pie dress almost has the body of the Seersucker Apple Tart dress with a full though not as full skirt, and black body and a black and white gingham bust. These two are so similar and I did like the Apple Pie more so it wasn't that hard of a decision. (Though I'm still hoping they might have some of these left in December!) ;)

Then they came out with their Waterlilies print! A Waterlilies in the Sweetie dress?!!!!! Oh, they make it so hard to resist! (Still hoping something will be left in December!!)

I think all you Trashy Diva fanatics out there know my plight!

But then they came out with the Turquoise Floral print. And there was one in the Maria! A bright happy blue with lots of colors like pink and purple and yellow and green and white with lovely big flowers all over. Now this I could not resist! I had a coupon code that was begging to get used and it was going to expire soon so I went for it and bought this Maria. I missed out on the Maria dress when they had the yellow and the black embroidered versions so I felt slightly justified in really wanting and subsequently buying this one. ;)

The Maria Dress in Turquoise Floral:
I got this lovely little number in my usual size 10 and was surprised it still fit a little big. It is definitely a little loose in the bust and shoulders but I'm sure that if I sized down it would be too small in the waist. This dress has beautiful colors that I have not seen coming up too well in any pictures I've seen on the internet so far. It is a beautiful shade of rich turquoise blue on a more blue side, with pink, purple and yellow flowers with green leaves, and white highlights. It has faux buttons at the bust and a high mandarin style collar. The cap sleeves are loose and comfortable. The pleated skirt is full and flowy. It has a side zip and comes with a self fabric covered belt. Overall, this is a lovely dress with lots of comfort!

Trashy Diva Maria Dress In Turquoise Floral- Front View

Trashy Diva Maria Dress In Turquoise Floral- Front View

Trashy Diva Maria Dress In Turquoise Floral- Side View

Trashy Diva Maria Dress In Turquoise Floral- Back View
Trashy Diva Maria Dress In Turquoise Floral- Close Up

After the Turquoise Floral print, Trashy Diva continued to tease me by coming out with their Cherries Print. What I really loved about this Cherries print is that it's not your run of the mill rockabilly, overtly red and obvious, cherry print. These cherries seemed somehow a little more sophisticated. A little more classic, and not in a modernized classic retro way, but a more true to form vintage style classic print way. But what really pushed me over the edge with the selection is this print was the dresses they had in it! They released this print in the ever lovely and loved Streetcar dress. One of my favorite dress styles from Trashy Diva! And they also came out with one I've never seen before, a 1940's Flutter dress! This dress, from what I can tell has the same body style as the 1940's dress with flutter sleeves.

I have a dress from Stop Staring that has flutter details and I absolutely love it! Flutters gives dresses such a romantic feel and it's just so feminine and so vintage.

Even though I had a hard time deciding which of these two styles I would like more, I ultimately decided I liked the 1940's Flutter dress more which worked in my favor in the end! I would not have dared to buy another TD diva dress so soon after buying the Apple Pie dress for my bday in early July, AND the Turquoise Floral in August... but I got offered a writing assignment from Cats Like Us which I jumped at the chance at and while I was waiting for my writing credit to come in they popped this beauty on their website and were even selling it at an awesome price! So with my commission from Cats Like Us I swooped on this dress like a hungry bird going after one of these delicious cherries! :D

The 1940's Flutter dress in Cherries Print:
I contacted Trashy Diva with my measurements asking their suggestion which size to get in either this dress or the Streetcar dress. They suggested that with my measurements I should get a size 12 which they said would probably be a bit big in the bust but would fit my waist better. Well, normally I would have followed their instructions but in this case, since I had my Cats Like Us credit to use and Cats Like Us was selling the 1940's Flutter dress at such a great price, and Cats Like Us was sold out in the size 12s, I decided to take the chance and buy the size 10 and see how it worked. This one fit! It is very fitted in the waist but not overly so. I think in this style if I got it in the larger size 12 it would have made me look too top heavy or bulky in the shoulders with the style of sleeves anyhow. This is a wonderfully flowy dress with a fitted bust and fitted waist. Those are some good combinations in my book! This dress has the body style of the 1940's dress: a low v-neckline with lots of gatherings at the top and bottom of the bust and at the shoulders, as well as on the skirt. The back is also a low v-neckline with gatherings. The waist has a thick and sleek cinching band that is lined to help with waist control. Taking a closer look at the flutter sleeves I could not find any joining seams and was amazed to find out that each sleeve is comprised of a full donut shaped circle attached at the arm holes! That must have taken a lot of fabric to do this for each dress! I do wish the flutter on the sleeves did not go down so low at the underside of the sleeves... after a few wears I might make some alterations on that, but that would completely change the full circle sleeves so I'll have to think of that some. This dress has a back zip.

Trashy Diva 1940's Flutter Dress In Cherries- Front View

Trashy Diva 1940's Flutter Dress In Cherries- Front View

Trashy Diva 1940's Flutter Dress In Cherries- Side View

Trashy Diva 1940's Flutter Dress In Cherries- Back View

Trashy Diva 1940's Flutter Dress In Cherries- Close Up

And just when I thought all my currently new Trashy Diva purchases were done until at least the December sales, Trashy Diva put out some great dresses on super sale on their ebay shop. It seems that they do this once a year to clear out their stock of damaged and defective items. But if you are handy with a needle and thread or don't mind paying a little extra to take it to a seamstress you can get some really great discounts on brand new Trashy Diva dresses! During this sale I was so so so so lucky to find the Lena Sarong in the Blue Hawaii print for only $55 and it was in my size, 10!!! The damage on it was a little hole at the zip seam at the bottom of the zipper. It probably happened when someone was trying to shimmy into the dress and was a little too rough with it. Rayon can be so delicate sometimes. Honestly though, it was the tiniest little hole that was easier to fix than it was trying to get the wrinkles out!

The Lena Sarong in Blue Hawaii:
The Lena Sarong in Blue Hawaii is the epitome of classic 1950's sarong style. While tropical in print and flowy fabric, it is very elegant in form and fit. The bodice has a structured and multiply-pleated bust with a structured pleated under bust. The waist is slim and fitted and the fitted skirt has a lovely attached yet draped sarong. At the top of the sarong is tie stash which helps finish off the look of the draping sarong. The straps on this dress are adjustable with differently spaced buttons to attach it onto the back of the dress. Also, there are elastic panels on each side of the top to ensure a perfectly fitted look. Finishing off the whole look, in true classic Hollywood fashion, an attached drape sits over the right shoulder and flows down the back.

Trashy Diva Lena Sarong In Blue Hawaii- Front View

Trashy Diva 1940's Flutter Dress In Cherries- Side View

Trashy Diva 1940's Flutter Dress In Cherries- Back View

Trashy Diva 1940's Flutter Dress In Cherries- Close Up

How lucky I was to be able to get all three of these prints in my favorite dress styles they came in! Keep an eye out for those sales ladies!!! Because sales are the best!

For reference my measurements are 39-31-39 and I'm 5'3" and all of these dresses are size 10.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Matching Your Dress To Your Teaware, Part 6 The Bees Knees!

Summer may be officially over as of earlier this week but before the days become too short and the air outside becomes too cool lets dream of a final tea outing out in the garden.

The leaves are turning brown and the sun is going down as you unwind with a spot of tea... earl gray perhaps?

What better way to celebrate the end of the long day and the beginning of Autumn than with a bee themed tea? Check out the perfect paring between Heart of Haute's Yellow Bees Ella dress (available at Arrogant Dolls) and the Yellow Bees Teapot at Stash Tea!

Heart of Haute Yellow Bees Ella Dress, photo:

Yellow Bees Teapot, photo:

Heart of Haute Yellow Bees Ella Dress, photo:

Heart of Haute's Yellow Bees Ella dress is a super cute 1960's mod style yellow dress with bees throughout the print! I love the bow tie at the neck. <3 Pair this with the Yellow Bees Teapot at Stash Tea and you have perfection ready to brighten any fall day! I love the basket weave texture on this ceramic teapot and furthermore love how it's shaped like a bee hive! So cute and cleaver.

In real life, bees are one of the things I most have an irrational fear of, but these friendly looking bees make me smile. :)

I could imagine how lovely it would be to be soaking up the last bits of chilled golden sun rays as the sun slowly goes down all while wearing this cute dress and pouring from this lovely teapot. <3 Early Autumn days! <3

Monday, September 22, 2014

Outfit of the Day: Going Black and White

Last weekend was a good eating weekend!

It started off with a mussel and oyster feed at a local yacht club in Alameda... a friend of Tim's was the very talented chief for the night! Then on Saturday was the annual Eat Real Food Truck Festival in Jack London Square in Oakland.

Lots of good food this weekend and completely unplanned, two black and white outfits to go with it!

Outfit of the Day:

For Friday night, during the yacht club dinner, I wore my Lucky 13 Hairspray dress. I thought the print on this dress would be fitting since it has a nautical theme working throughout it. Also, because the print is so busy on this dress, I figured it would also be a good choice in case I dropped something on it while eating. Also, because we were going to be right on the water and I wasn't sure if this was an indoor or outdoor event, I decided to pair it with my black capri leggings. I also wore a black cardigan and my trusty black flats.

Lucky 13 Hairspray Dress- Front View

Lucky 13 Hairspray Dress- Front View

Lucky 13 Hairspray Dress- Side View

Lucky 13 Hairspray Dress With Black Cardigan- Front View

Lucky 13 Hairspray Dress With Black Cardigan- Front View

Lucky 13 Hairspray Dress With Black Cardigan- Side View

Lucky 13 Hairspray Dress- Close Up

For the Eat Real Festival on Saturday I decided my black and white gingham dress would be perfect! Some of you readers my recognize this dress. This is the first dress of the year that I made!  I made this dress with Butterick pattern B4790. After I initially blogged about it, I did do some alterations to get it to fit a little better. I pulled the shoulders up and took in a little bit of the bodice at the darts. I paired this with a black cardigan and as usual for walking days, my trusty black flats. 

Dress Made By Me, Butterick Pattern B4790- Front View

Dress Made By Me, Butterick Pattern B4790- Front View

Dress Made By Me, Butterick Pattern B4790- Side View
Dress Made By Me, Butterick Pattern B4790 With Black Cardigan- Front View

Dress Made By Me, Butterick Pattern B4790 With Black Cardigan- Front View

Friday, September 19, 2014

Local Shop In The Spotlight: Vintage Alley!!

A vintage style clothing store in Hayward?! How awesome is that!

Vintage Alley, Hayward, CA

I was so surprised and elated when I heard about Vintage Alley opening in downtown Hayward a couple years ago. In fact, when I first heard the news, I thought it was a hoax. I mean, really, things like that are too good to be true! Lucky for me, though, it absolutely was true!

This place is run by a husband and wife team, the super awesome and charismatic Alfred and ever wonderful and beautiful Alicia. These people know how to run a true mom and pop shop too! It didn't take long for them to know me by name and greet me personally whenever I come into the shop. They also never fail to ask how my mother-in-law is doing after her pop into the shop last summer. I'm sure this personalized attention goes out to all their regular and semi-regular customers.

Vintage Alley, Hayward, CA

Not only do they run an awesome shop but they also have a chic hair salon at the same location where yours truly loves to get a vintage do done by the friendly, stunning, and talented Leilani.

Vintage Alley Salon Waiting Area

At The Vintage Alley Salon

On top of their hard work in running their shop and salon they also get involved in community events. For the past two years they have participated in Hayward's Walk of Wine, and this year, they even hosted their first annual car show in downtown Hayward!

Speaking of Haward's Walk of Wine Tour, while I blogged about it a few weeks ago, what I didn't tell you in that post (at least in length) was the behind the scenes of that day!

I started my morning by going into the shop for a hair appointment. While I was there the owner Alicia let me know I could pick our any item for 20% off! What an excellent surprise. But with the hair appointment done and the Walk of Wine about to start I was already running late so she let me take a rain check to come back later that day. When I came back later in the day for one of the wine pours I took advantage of the 20% off one item but ended up getting not just one item but two (though only one was 20% off). My ever wonderful husband bought them for me! He said, as a extra special treat and last present for my birthday this year. <3

So what did I get? Let's do a clothing review!

Heart of Haute Estelle Blouse in Black:

The Heart of Haute Estelle Blouse is my favorite top by Heart of Haute. When they first released this top earlier this year I knew I was going to love it. It has a cute and full pussy bow at the neck, lots of pleating, cute little puff sleeves that don't bulk you up, and a fitted design. I did find with the wrong bra that I got some button gaping but with the right bra, it was minimal. Still, I think I might want to invest in some fashion tape for this top to keep the gaping away or just do my usual fix and safety pin it from the inside.

Steady High Waisted Thrill Skirt in Red:

This is the prefect skirt! I've been stalking this one forever online going back and forth between convincing myself that I don't need it, and then telling myself that I really wanted it. I'm so happy I was able to pick this one up. It is just the right length, the right shade of red, the right amount of flare, and sits just right on my waist. And with it being a separate, it's very versatile... you can see it with another Heart of Haute Estelle Blouse here. I also can't wait to start wearing it with some sweater tops when the weather starts to get a little cooler.

Heart of Haute Estelle Blouse Black With Steady High Waisted Thrills Skirt- Front View

Heart of Haute Estelle Blouse Black With Steady High Waisted Thrills Skirt- Front View

Heart of Haute Estelle Blouse Black With Steady High Waisted Thrills Skirt- Side View

Heart of Haute Estelle Blouse Black With Steady High Waisted Thrills Skirt- Back View

Heart of Haute Estelle Blouse Black- Close Up

If you're ever in the Hayward area be sure to check out this shop! They carry a huge selection of Stop Starting dresses, a good amount of Heart of Haute, Steady, as well as a pretty large selection of men's clothing, some baby's clothing, tons of hats, and so many beautiful accessories and hair flowers!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Making Little Hats- Cherries Edition!

So now that I finally started working on some DIY hat projects again, I'm on a roll!

The day that I made the last fascinator (see the Carmen Miranda inspired hat here) I also made a black fascinator with cherries but didn't get around to photographing it until just now!

And so without any farther ado, here is the DIY tutorial for a cherry fascinator you can make yourself at home!

Making Little Hats!

1) Start with a fascinator base. I bought this straw base from ebay

 2) Add the decoration of your choice. I start with what I think will best go on the botton layer of the fascinator first... the part closest to the fascinator base.

When adding decoration which is heavy or which might not have an easy time surviving on the hat from just hot glue alone, I like to find a way to sew on the decoration. For these cherries I hot glued the stems together then sewed the stems onto the hat.

To reinforce the stitches, I then hot glued the decoration on over the stitches. 

 Here is what the back side of the fascinator looks like.
3) Next, if you are adding multiple things to your fascinator, if there are parts overlapping, those overlapping parts should go on next. If you want something overlapping the second layer, add that next, and so on.

I both sewed on and hot glued on the bow.
4) Hot glue your stitching on the underside of the hat too once all your decoration is added!

5) Next, sew on a hair clip, alligator clip, or hair comb. Be sure to pay extra attention to which way you will want the hat to be orientated on your head. If adding a hair clip (like shown) or alligator clip you will want the hair clip to be parallel to the ground when attaching the fascinator to your head. This will give the fascinator a jaunty tilt. If you are adding a hair comb you would want that to be at the front of the hat towards your face with the teeth of the comb facing towards the back of your head.

6) Last, reinforce your stitches with hot glue at the fat end of your hair clip or alligator clip. For a hair comb, you would want the hot glue to be at the long solid edge of the hair comb not touching the teeth.

And here you have the finished product! A new fascinator to wear out and have fun with!

Black Cherry Fascinator You Can Make At Home!