Summer Project Inspiration

Well, hello there.

I’ve missed you.

Have you missed me? Don’t be coy 😉

If you follow me on Facebook, you would know that I’ve been in a bit of a slump; crafter’s block, if you will.

It’s pretty frustrating to feel uninspired but I’ve somehow been able to keep myself busy with other things (ahem, life). I’ve never been more on top of laundry. Which, I know my family appreciates but it’s my least favorite chore.

In the next few weeks, I plan on shirking my household responsibilities completing several summer wardrobe projects in anticipation for a 5 day trip to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico with the hubs (no kids! Thanks to my bestest friend and *other* soulmate, Hollie, for “volunteering” to keep them!), which, will take place mid-March. This is a work-related trip for him so there will be a few mandatory events that I need to keep in mind when deciding what to pack. Specifically, we will attend a formal Awards Banquet that I’ll need an outfit for and I’d love to DIY it (I’m thinking the sequin maxi below). I wore this to the banquet last year and I felt just a smidge too casual (I also just realized that I never showed you how I made the bodice. shame on me). The event is not really black-tie but it’s full of suits and evening gowns and, in case you haven’t met me, I’m not an evening gown kind of gal. So, I will definitely be going for separates.

I realize it’s still winter but, what better way to kick the gloomy weather blues than by immersing yourself in summer colors and daydreams of the beach?!? Sooo…today’s post is a list of DIY inspiration I’ve found out there in the blogosphere. Perhaps, these projects will motivate you as much as they have me.

Two Harbors Tote

Two Harbors Tote

 

La Vie En Rose Victoria's Secret Inspired Beach Cover-up

La Vie En Rose Victoria’s Secret Inspired Beach Cover-up

Prudent Baby Shirt Dress

Prudent Baby Shirt Dress

 

Cotton and Curls Tulip Wrap Skirt

Cotton and Curls Tulip Wrap Skirt

 

A Pair and a Spare Sequin Maxi Wrap Skirt

A Pair and a Spare Sequin Maxi Wrap Skirt

 

Sincerely Kinsey Urban Outfitters Inspired Lace Shorts

Sincerely Kinsey Urban Outfitters Inspired Lace Shorts

She is Red Glittered Sunnies

She is Red Glittered Sunnies

 

Manzanita Flip Flop Refahion

Manzanita Flip Flop Refahion

 

What I Wore Striped Summer Hat

What I Wore Striped Summer Hat

 

 

What do you think of these projects? I hope you’ve been inspired to start some summer projects of your own. If you do, please share them!

I’m off to walk the lake trail with the little one since we finally have some sunshine! I love Thursdays and I am so greatful to have nice weather today. Hey, that reminds me, I heard an interesting statistic the other day (not sure from where) that said that most women are happiest on Thursday. That was speculated to be a result of anicipation for the coming weekend but also attributed to the fact that most women have sex on Thursdays more than any other day of the week. I’m not really going anywhere with this except to say enjoy your day!

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Shabby Apple = Gorgeous Dresses and Accessories

I just stumbled across this website and I’m loving it.

Shabby Apple sells clothing and accessories for women. They offer many different styles of feminine dresses, skirts, blouses, unique watches and eye catching jewelry. They have things for the home, maternity dresses, kid’s clothes and the most amazing swimsuits. All of the clothing is designed with modesty in mind (no cleavage or supershort hemlines) for real women rather than supermodels.

They even have a program for Emerging Designers in which they will take on small collections from start-up designers and give them a place to sell their line.

One of my favorite things about Shabby Apple is their desire to help women in need. Check out this from their website:

For many women in the developing world, life is a constant struggle against poverty and hardship. Limited economic opportunity leads to a downward cycle of malnutrition, illiteracy and poor health – a cycle that traps each new generation. Through access to microfinance – financial services such as microcredit loans, insurance, savings and other products – women can overcome poverty and provide a better life for their children.

We at Shabby Apple love to help women dress but are also commited to helping women live as well.  Thus we are supporting the fight against global poverty by partnering with Accion-a non-profit organization with the mission of giving people the financial tools they need to work their way out of poverty. Shabby Apple donates 5% of its net sales to support work with 62 microfinance institutions in 31 countries throughout the world.

With every dress you buy from Shabby Apple, you are helping make a difference in the lives of Women Worldwide.

I think that’s just dandy. 🙂

Exclusive offer!! Save 10% off sitewide at Shabby Apple with code: favorite10

I’ve been obsessively looking through their website for over an hour and fantisizing about all the stuff I’m going to buy. Here are some of my favorites.

Elizabeth Islands Dress

Slacks to Skirt Refashion

Like I said yesterday, this is my favorite of the refashions so far and I wore it only for about three hours and got tons of compliments. It was fun to be at such a beautiful event where I know people wear their best and every time someone tells me “You look gorgeous! Love the dress!” I just snicker to myself knowing that I made this 🙂 …from hideous over-sized MC Hammer-like way-too-pleated $2 slacks from Goodwill!

This really could not be more simple. Grab some slacks from a second-hand store (or your dad, grandpa, husband’s closet). Mine were actually women’s pants which is really not necessary. All that matters is that you like the material.

Turn them inside out and fold them in half. Making sure all of the fabric is straight and the legs are lined up. Pull the crotch out so it looks like the picture below. Using a ruler and tailor’s chalk mark a line straight down from just below the end of the zipper to wherever that straight line lands at the edge of the pant leg.

Now measure how long you want your skirt and add an inch then mark with your chalk and ruler.

These are your cut marks. Make sure the cut up near the crotch is as straight as possible.

Now, open it up and fold in half like you’re going to iron a crease. This will give you two open sides which will end up the middle front and middle back seams of the skirt. Pin down these sides and sew together.

IF the pants previously fit in the waist then all you have left to do is hem the bottom.

For me, my pants were not just too big in the waist but they were waaaay to big through the hips (did you see all that pleating?) and thighs.

I also wanted a curvy shape that tapered at the bottom but had plenty of room in the hips. So I just sewed from the top of the waistband down to the bottom in the shape I wanted.

I didn’t get any pictures of this step but I did a little drawing for your amusement (and clarification). Red is the sew line. As you can see, I had to sew the pockets closed, which I’m still not very happy about but, trying to keep them and get this thing to fit properly would have required more time than I had available (I made it at midnight a couple of days before the wedding).

There you have it, folks. In case you were wondering, yes, I made the bodice as well. It wasn’t a refashion but it was made from clearance fabric 🙂 . It’s a bit more complicated as it’s completely fitted with seam shapes I’ve never attempted before but, it turned out as I wanted. One day, I will share with you how I did it.

Also, the earrings, made those too 🙂 tutorial is coming soon.

And for those of you that are interested the bag is vintage (it was my mom’s) and the shoes are my newest obsession. Vera Wang (got em 60% off though!). I got a ton of complements on these too. Can you see why?

 

 

Thrifted Dress Refashion

I love the way this turned out. I grabbed it at a local thrift store for $5. 😀

 

 

The refashion was simple. I cut the neckline into a V and the back into a tapered square. Then cut it short and hemmed. VERY quick and easy!

If you like this one, stick around this week because I have several other refashions from items that I picked up on the same thrifty trip. One of them being that bright striped bag you see in the pictures.

Dress and bag: Thrifted Refashion Shoes and belt: Thrifted Earrings: Self-made Bracelet: F21

 

 

Southwest Style Day Two: Jewelery Jewelery Jewelery!

Howdy! Hey, I know it’s late and you’ve been waiting for this all day (ok, maybe not) but, here it is.

Day two of my Southwest Style fiesta is all about jewelery. DIY jewelery to be exact.

I don’t have step by step pictures for you as I’ve been feverishly working on this stuff for the past two days with interruptions, snafus, material hunting and blisters (aaand gluing my fingers together 😦 ).

I’m going to give you a quick run-down of how these little beauties were made. And let me also disclaim that I realize this is not your traditional southwest jewelery. It’s my modern take after being inspired by searching the web.

Before you scroll down to read my secrets, try to guess what materials I used 🙂 you might be surprised.

1. Bronzy Feather Pendant

Materials used:

  • Chain, jump rings, lobster clasp and one of those long pieces of wire with the loop on the end for beads…I’m drawing a blank
  • homemade salt dough try this recipe from the lovely katy elliott
  • metallic brush markers in black and bronze
  • Pliers

I made the dough then shaped my feather then stuck in the bead thing. Once it was hardened (took about a week) I used the black marker to get into the nooks and crannys then several coats of the bronze. Attached a jump ring to the feather and one end of the chain, lobster clasp on other end and you’re done!

2. Suede Tassel Earrings

Materials used:

  • Two different colors of suede fringe (I got them at Wal-mart $1 for 8 ft)
  • Chain, two large jump rings and two small, earring thingamajig (man, I am on the ball tonight)
  • gorilla glue or some other fast drying glue that dries clear
  • wire cutters, pliers

I used two 8 inch lengths of turquoise suede and two 8 inch lengths of orange then cut four 4 inch lengths of chain. Line up one turquoise and one orange together then fold in half and knot onto one of the large jump rings. Attach two pieces of chain to a small jump ring and then attach that to the big one then attach to earring thing.

3, 4 and 5

All of these use the same materials:

  • Shoebox (yep!)
  • chain, jump rings, earring do-daddys, lobster clasps
  • Metallic Silver Paint pen
  • Scissors/utility knife and pliers

I cut up a shoe box to make it flat then drew my designs and cut them out. Painted two coats (front and back) with the paint pen. I used my seam ripper to make holes for the jump rings. Easy peasy 🙂

6. Painted Leather Earrings

Materials:

  • Leather ( I cut mine from an old purse)
  • acrylic paint
  • stencil (optional)
  • scissors
  • jump rings, chain…you know the drill

I cut the leather in the shape I wanted then painted. For the white part I used a stencil after the yellow was dry. Attach rings, chain etc.

7. Glittery Fox Pendant

Materials:

  • Same as 3, 4, and 5 except instead of the silver paint I used some gold nail polish and gold glitter

You may want to finish up with a spray sealant to keep your fox from ‘shedding’ (tee hee)

So, that’s it folks!

Have a great evening and don’t forget to stop by tomorrow for more Southwest Style fun. I have a really neat project that’s ready for the sharing!