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Thursday, December 22, 2011

What I'm Wearing | Last minute Christmas Shopping!

Today I wanted to get to the mall and get in those last few gifts.  I live pretty close to the mall and I *thought* that since the weather was pretty bad and being that it was a Thursday morning that the crowds wouldn't be too bad.  Yep, I was wrong.  Parking was atrocious and the lines were ridiculous.  I guess everyone had the same idea.
I was feeling pretty festive and decided to wear my red pants.  I wore them with my black turtleneck, black leather moto jacket, black tights and black suede wedges. And I've really been enjoying my new bag from Urban Expressions.  I'm not vegan, but the bag is.  I love the Chanel-esque styling.  I was in TJ Maxx and  it just happened to jump off the rack at me.  I'm more inclined to carry a black bag on a daily basis, so I figured it may as well be this cute one.
I still have one or two things I may buy, but I knocked out pretty much everything that was on my list.  That's an accomplishment for me being that I still have Friday and Saturday shopping opportunities!  Go me!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Cheetah vs. Leopard: Can you tell the difference?

I use to think Cheetah and Leopard were interchangeable terms as it pertained to animal print -- even though I am intelligent enough to realize that they are two different animals.  What lead me to this post is that I started noticing the differences in the prints while searching for fabric.  And also noticing how people look at the same print and one refers to it as "cheetah" while the other says "leopard".  

Since animal print is trending hard and heavy this season, I thought it would be good to really take a close look at how they differ.

Cheetah

Cheetah spots are fairly round/oval shaped and black and they sit on a tan or orangy background.

Leopard

Leopard spots are actually clusters of black and brown spots that look like roses and are referred to as "rosettes".

I found that once I really paid attention to the details that it was really easy to tell the difference.  Simple enough, right?

I know that was almost too easy, so here's one that will probably really throw you.

Jaguar

The jaguar print looks a lot like the leopard print, they are also rosettes.  But there is one subtle difference:  they have black spots inside them.

I hope you find this helpful and now you won't be making the same fashion faux "paws" that I have!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

What I'm Wearing | Bright Blue Coat + Fur Scarf

Today I decided to embrace the fur scarf trend.  My fur "scarf" is real blue fox.  It's vintage.  It was originally owned by my grandmother and it was the collar on a mink stole.  I didn't like the stole so I removed the collar.  
I've had it for years and I've been keeping it with the intention of adding it to a coat.  I just haven't found a pattern that I wanted to use.  So in the interim, I'm wearing it as a scarf.
I'm wearing it with my Vogue 8548 bright blue coat.  There is just something about this coat that makes me feel cheerful when I wear it.
I've had this coat for over 3 years.  One of the biggest "I-could-kick-myself" qualms I have with it is -- NO POCKETS!  There are no pockets drafted in the pattern and I didn't add them.  What was I thinking?!  How can you have a coat without pockets?  I love the style of this coat and I've been thinking about making another one in white.  And if I do, I can assure you that I will find a way to add some pockets.  
Another thing that's "vintage" are these boots.  They're Enzo Angiolini's that I've had for around 15 or 16 years.  As you can see I take really GOOD care of my footwear... shoes are investments.  I don't think I've ever worn out a pair of shoes or boots.  They get regular visits to the "shoe doctor" for minor repairs as needed.  
I'm also wearing my McCall's 6404 leggings, a black sweater and a Nine West crossbody faux snakeskin bag.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Review: Vogue 8776 | Camel Cape

I have been lusting for some camel-colored outerwear since last year.  I've had this piece of fabric in my stash since Summer 2010!  
I first fell in love with this cape design when it came down the Giambattista Valli Fall 2010 runway.  And then I saw it worn by Fatima Siad in an editorial in the July 2010 issue of Marie Claire.  I immediately ripped out the page and pinned it to my corkboard to occasionally daydream about and drool over!
Not to mention her hair is extraordinarily amazing!

And the black version was also worn by Victoria Beckham.

Vogue 8776 is not a perfect knock-off, but it really does a great job of capturing the silhouette of the original.  

I used 100% wool melton coating and the cape is left unlined.  There are 3 length options and I used version B.  I cut the size large.  I probably could have done the medium, but I wanted to make sure I'd be able to raise my arms with the unique "sleeves".  There were no fit issues for me, so this baby sewed perfectly straight out of the envelope.  Anytime I can do that, that's "Grade A+" pattern for me!

I really, really wanted a similar look to the original, so instead of buttons I used covered snaps.**  I've been looking at other garments with covered snaps and apparently I didn't follow the rule on which side the male and female parts should go on.  Oh well, what's done is done.  I'll know next time.
**Note:  If you decided to eliminate buttons as I did, you have to make sure to skip instructions 3, 9, 16, etc...  Basically any where near the center front where you see the 2 small circles where you're instructed to reinforce and clip.  These create inseam buttonholes.  

The Vogue cape has inseam pockets.  I wish the pattern had made provisions for a wide welt pocket like the original.  And why are the pockets on these pattern never deep enough?  You need room to shove your gloves in!
Here's the back...

and how it looks open.

And the gratuitous shoe shot!  
These are Sam Edelman 'Lyla' Pumps.  I bought them from my favorite local shoe boutique Gus Mayer.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Inspired by Pinterest: Pink and Nude and Black

Today's look is another one that's inspired by Pinterest.  I pinned this look a few days ago and knew that I would be doing my own version of it.
Great look from The Blonde Salad!

Wearing McCall's 5190 military jacket; silk knit tshirt; Simplicity 2315 black pants.


The black, nude and fuschia was really easy to translate.  They were basic pieces that I already had.
Also a pair of my favorite bone colored Steve Madden platform mary janes.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Question: Downloadable vs. Pre-printed Patterns?

The trend pattern companies seem to be going to is downloadable patterns that you print at home and piece together.  Have you used any?  Do you like them?  Or do you prefer pre-printed patterns?

Let's discuss!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

What I'm Wearing | My version of "Country Chic"!


Today, we ventured out to the country to our favorite Christmas tree farm that we've been buying our trees from for years.  
I can't believe some of the prices that I've seen for live trees ($100+) and they're already dry!  There is nothing like sawing down your own tree.  You know it's fresh and needles won't be all over the place before Christmas!
This is Simplicity 2812.  I love this jacket!  This is my go-to jacket that I've been pulling from the closet every since I made it for any type of outdoor activity I'm involved in.  I love the styling of this jacket... it's very "country-chic" and most importantly it's warm!

Time for some Sunday Night Sewing!

Thursday, December 08, 2011

What I'm Wearing | Houndstooth, Yellow & {faux} Leather

Baby, it's cold outside!  Finally we have coat weather!  If you don't live in the south or climate that hardly gets all four seasons, you probably don't understand my glee.  I'm seriously excited that the temperature finally matches the naked trees!
Today, I pulled out my favorite coat.  This is my houndstooth coat that I made a few years ago.  This is a project that I was really proud of doing.  I put A LOT of hand tailoring work into it and I even perfectly matched the print at the seams.  Go me!  I
houndstooth tights!

I've been loving houndstooth, especially the large scale this season since I laid eyes on the Salvatore Ferragamo Fall 2011 Collection I'd previously blogged about.  Finding houndstooth fabric in anything other than quilting cotton has been uneventful for me.  So I'll just relish in the fact that my coat was already in my collection!
Underneath the coat I wore my pleated faux leather skirt.  
Worn with a yellow cable knit scoop neck sweater, red belt, Steve Madden wedges and my Elliott Lucca bag.

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

What I'm Wearing | I'm Feeling Blue!


Today was chilly and rainy and it was a perfect opportunity to pull out my McCall's 5525 trench jacket.
Once the rain stopped, my daughter and I went to lunch and walked it off! I'm lucky enough to live in an area that has so many beautiful places right outside my front door.
And I'm wearing one of my favorite, go to hats that I crocheted a gazillion years ago.  Did y'all even remember that I could crochet and that this was originally a crocheting blog?! LOL  Then it was a knitting blog and then sewing...  When you've been blogging for as long as I have, you have to keep moving forward and evolving.  
I decided to do some denim on denim.  This seems to be the trendy thing to do.  And it seems to be appropriate as long as the shades of blue are different.  
Worn with DKNY denim shirt; GAP skinny jeans; leather crossbody messenger bag and Sam Edelman boots.


I had never (to my knowledge) seen a duck like this.  I googled "red-faced duck" which lead me to the Muschovy Duck.  I guess this is what these are.  They were our walking companions!

Monday, December 05, 2011

What I'm Wearing | Black and Winter White

Today, the weather was really mild, humid and around 72 degrees.  Rain weather!  I still wanted to dress in a fall-appropriate outfit.  I pulled out my winter white Alice + Olivia wide-legged pants that I sewed almost 3 years ago.  They're still just as fabulous as when I first sewed them.  You can read the review HERE.  
If you're looking for great pants patterns and you've never tried a Vogue Alice + Olivia one, you've been missing out.  They're cut with a wide waistband, slim through the hips and thighs, and flaring at the knee.  Each pair I've made have become classics and staples in my closet.  When I wear them out, I'm going to sew more!
I made it home today just before the rain came!