April 19, 2011 § Leave a comment
Inspiration is all around us and can be found in the most unlikely places, but sometimes it’s nice to recreate a look that’s right in front of you. I am particularly fond of this outfit because it can be so easily compiled using your existing wardrobe – which is what I’m all about! Bring together city shorts, a lace vest top or body, granny chic socks & ANY heels and a piece of wide ribbon or a chiffon scarf tied in a bow for your hair. Add some chunky accessories and wallah! If you have a plain wooden chunky bracelet why not paint your own design. The most unique aspect of this outfit is obviously the silk printed jacket which can be recreated using a short dressing gown or bed jacket – and if this is something you don’t have hanging around I found some here and here. Quick, quick, quick though as bidding ends soon! Another perfectly feasible idea might be to use a 100% silk men’s short sleeve printed shirt, something like this one! Using sharp scissors, start cutting from the hem of the shirt up button stand (about 2″ in), up and around the neck (removing the collar) and finally down the other side (cutting of the buttons). If said shirt doesn’t belong to you, just nip in at the waist using a safety pin and tuck the collar underneath. There’s a chance of course that your experimentation might go horribly wrong and you’ll end up somewhere between Miami Vice and Hawaii Five-O,- neither of which should ever be considered inspiring – but it’s worth a try! I may just have to try this myself and post a demonstration… Good Luck!
January 19, 2011 § 1 Comment
Valentine’s Day will soon be upon us and whether you’re single, looking, attached or other it’s good to – dare I say it – get in on the action…
While I’m not in favour of the commercialisation of saints or confessing your love for another only once a year, I do enjoy being spoiled. All feminism thrown to the wayside – traditionally men are supposed to spoil while the fairer sex are spoiled. However, the internet presence in our daily lives encourages the use of methods requiring little, if any, effort come the 14th of February. Although I’m not much of a traditional romantic, I am still traditional and would prefer not to find a token gesture e-card in my inbox come the big day. It’s simple, no gimmicks – a home-made card and I’m anyone’s. Men however don’t want flowers or chocolates and I’m pretty sure only the more sensitive demographic will appreciate a card. But I think I’ve hit the nail on the head here, and I really had to think hard. One word. Lingerie. I dream of silk, lace, frills and frou frou while most men are bound to choose crotchless over crocheted. So, why not buy your own lingerie? This leads to feeling good about yourself and securing numerous favours in the long run. Eek, I here you scream.
Listen, It’ll be alright on the night. Gok rattles on and on about how to look good naked and I think it’s safe to say he’s proven – while annoying the hell out of us – that once you accept and learn to love the skin you’re in, you radiate confidence and poise on the outside. I have so many beautiful friends who go on and on about minor body issues which in turn interferes with their daily lives and what they will or will not wear. We all have them; scars, stretchmarks, pimples, puckering – myself included – but I find that focusing on and shouting about these imperfections eats away at you, while not improving them at all!! Why waste your breath. You are not your imperfections they are merely part of you. Perfection is generally the ultimate goal among us gals, and as I write this I’m sure there are many women vigorously spooning Special K into their unsatisfied mouths. And If you are on a diet, February the 14th is the perfect opportunity to showcase your bod. A halfway point if you will. Have I convinced you yet?!
Though impractical and no alternative to the humble seamless t-shirt bra, I love the idea of a 1920’s bullet bra & French knickers combo a la Madonna circa 1980. If you don’t fancy donning an authentic pair of panties from the likes of the salvation army or your local vintage emporium, What Katie Did has some beautiful replica vintage satin sets. SockBox is a haven for all things girly from the thigh down but if you are handy with a needle and thread why not add bunches of chiffon roses to existing hold-ups to make them more unique or simply stitch on a bow. Try dyeing and adding satin roses to the straps of an outdated bra to give it a new lease of life, put on some pearls and you could be Carrie Bradshaw. Should you wish to be Bradshaw. Enjoy!
January 15, 2011 § Leave a comment
Although I studied clothing design at University level, and have learnt the skills you need to make your own clothing, right from the paper to the finished product – I much prefer to customise existing articles! Maybe I’m just lazy, as customisation certainly involves less skill, but I find it provides just as much scope for creativity. Modifying something you already own – that might just be ‘alright’ – and transforming it into something really unique that you love gives you a pure sense of satisfaction and doesn’t cost the earth. If anything, you are saving money and instead of trailing the high street for a new outfit, a bit of tweaking here and there works a treat! Customising comes in especially handy during the transitional change from Winter to Summer or vice versa. Although remember, once you’ve turned those winter skinny jeans into summer cut offs – there’s no going back!! I think ought to start this topic by introducing what I think is the perfect ‘customisation kit’:
SCISSORS – of the sharp, fabric cutting and dress-making orientated variety. You can find a well priced, good quality pair from HobbyCraft.
WONDERWEB – generally thought of as the generic term for iron on hemming tape, an ingenious invention that allows you to hem shabbily cut garments with ease. It should be available from your local haberdashery and can also be found in John Lewis. A wonderful alternative to a needle & thread!
SAFETY PINS – in all sizes, they are ideal for temporary adjustments. I’ve been on many a night out whereby my outfit has been held together by masses of safety pins – not ideal if you’re travelling by aeroplane and need to get through security!!
ODDS & ENDS BOX – buttons, transfers, broken jewellery, ribbon, scraps of fabric – a treasure trove of goodies!!
If you’re struggling with an outfit or are having an “I’ve got nothing to wear” crisis, get your customisation kit out and get creative!! Once you’ve started customising your clothes, there’ll be no looking back and before you know it you’ll be adding puff sleeves to a plain-tee and pintucks to a well-worn skirt. If you have any ideas of items that could be added to my current customisation kit, please drop me a line!
In my next ramblings, I will be transforming an oversized charity shop bought heritage hacking jacket into something more unique and exciting that will be a great addition to your current wardrobe…