Lazy Sunday

Sunday I should have cleaned the house and worked more on my gown, but instead I decided to go antiquing and get BBQ with my friend Meghan. We also spent the morning planning next years trips. We can’t decide between Iceland/Norway or Japan. Japan is the more expensive trip, so I guess we’ll see how much money we can save in between now and when we need to start booking. 

I didn’t end up buying anything at the antique malls, but there was some cute stuff I was drawn to. 

The title of this book cracked me up, also the fact that it was written by a woman. 

Some very cute, but out of my budget Studdard enamel bowls. The heart ones are to die for, but not 60$ worth to die for. 

A mini french perfume set from the 1950’s! So cute. Perfume goes bad though eventually right? 


Lastly these cute little dollhouses. Is it weird that I’ve been dying to have an excuse to make a little mid century doll house? I don’t have kids, and don’t really want to play with dolls. I feel like it might be creepy if I picked up that hobby currently in my life! Oh well. 

As for the barbecue it was predictability delicious. We went to BBQ review, which was right next to the antique mall. I got the brisket and Meghan got the ribs. We inhaled it far to fast to take any pictures of it, but I did get an instant picture of my with the giant pig statue out front. I’ve been lazy and haven’t scanned it yet though. 

How was your weekend? 

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On The Sewing Table: Butterick 5987

So my brother is getting married next month, and the dress is black tie. I don’t own anything near that level of formal, nor do I have the money to spend right now on something that nice. Thanks to saving for Paris that is. So I decided to try and tackle sewing formal wear. Here’s the pattern I’m using, Butterick 5987. 

Looks simple enough right? That is until you look at the instructions. The fabrics are finicky and there’s lining plus underlining. I’m taking my time but already am kind of worried on the outcome. I’m using a pretty deep teal crepe from Joann’s and it might be one of the nicer fabrics I’ve ever used. Here’s were it stands right now. 

How inspiring, I’ve managed to cut out half the pieces and pin them to the dress form… Ha! I host a group craft night monthly at my place though, and I’m hoping to get much further along with it during that tomorrow night. Here’s hoping it turns out actually wearable, or I might end up borrowing one of my sister’s formal dresses ( HI TORI! ).

Have you ever sewn formal wear? 

Garden Sprouts & My Face

My sister from another mister Meghan and I have started the seeds for our vegetable garden. Yes I know that while it’s snowing it seems really dumb to start your vegetable garden, but believe me when you’re starting from seed you need too! The first sprouts have started popping up and I’m ridiculously excited. I’ll post more about the actual garden once we start working outside, for now here’s a few macro shots of my new little babies. The kale and collards were the first to show their little faces! 

I had a particularly good hair and makeup day over the weekend, so bear with me while I share? I mean it’s my blog after all, so posting pictures of myself without the pictures sole purpose to show something I’ve sewn isn’t way too vain is it? I get weird about selfies, but whatever. In an effort to take photos daily, sometimes your’e the only subject that interesting. 

I’m still holding out for winter to break. We had some serious snow today, but it didn’t stick. I’m just very ready to go get my hands in the dirt and start growing my veggies! Anyone else starting their seeds? 

Wardrobe Inspiration: Skirts & Tops

It must be spring! Yesterday I was absolutely ruthless with a big old fashioned closet cleanout. I’m down to the bare essentials now. I want to start curating & sewing some classic pieces to really up the ante on my wardrobe situation. Colette has been doing a series on the blog called wardrobe architect. Where it seems half the battle is finding out what you love, and sticking to it. I can be really all over the place style wise and definitely want to get something that’s more me nailed down. I’ve been pinning a lot of clothing that’s inspiring me, so I though I would share! I realized I need way more separates in my wardrobe so we’ll start with some of those! 

Skirts! 

Sources: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Three out of five of the skirts I could sew with my Zinnia pattern, if I get the fir right that is. I could definitely draft the circle skirt with suspenders, and would have no problem adding a ruffle to that pencil skirt. These are the silhouettes I keep coming back to, so I should probable do something about it! 

 

Tops!

Sources: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7.

I’m drawn to tunics, drapey singlets, scallops, collars, and cute and colorful prints. I’m actually quite lacking in the blouse department. These are good pieces for me to base some future pattern purchases off of though. I think I need to focus more on separates when rebuilding my wardrobe, they seem to be a total workhorse piece compared to dresses. 

Have you figured out your own style? Any tips on building a good wardrobe? 

Instax Mini 8 Review

Ever since Polaroid stopped making 600 film, I’ve been sad. I mean yes, I’m aware the impossible project is a thing. Really though, 600 film was almost price prohibitive when it only cost a dollar a picture, no way can I justify two or three for regular use. But the fuji instax mini saves the day here! I can get film for about 70¢ a shot! What finally sealed the deal for me was a friend bringing her camera to craft night. I missed the social aspect of my instant cameras. It’s so fun to just snap and have something tangible right away! That and our upcoming Paris trip, it just seemed to good to pass up. It actually helped that I had a little disaster last month, where I had to purchase a whole new camera system for my photography business. I had a ton of reward points to redeem at best buy, so it came in well under half of what I would have normally paid for it. On to what I thought! 

I chose the instax mini 8, As far as quality goes on the mini models from best to worst I think it goes; 90 neo classic, 50s, 8, and 7s. I looked at the models that were nicer than the one I got, but the features they offered didn’t really seem to be worth the price for me. I know with instant film, and film this small, the quality is only going to be so great.  Film quality is NOT at all why I choose to use this camera. As I mentioned before there’s a total social aspect to it. There’s a lot of people who have no idea what instant film is anymore, so it’s always a conversation starter. It’s also nice just to unplug from instagram when you’re out with friends. Also an other reason I still love film, it’s tangible. I’ve found prints from what feels like forever ago stuck in pages of books and just instantly have a wave of nostalgia. I like that.  The prints also happen to fit perfectly into my project life scrapbook layouts, score! 

Top Row: Ali Edwards Bottom Row Kelly Purkey

The camera is very simple to use. You press a button to pop out the lens, which turns on the camera. There’s an automatic light meter that light up and tell you what to set your camera to. Once your light meter is set, snap away! A photo will pop up out of the top of the camera and develop in about a minute. Here’s some examples of what I shot with my first pack of film. 

Some Thoughts & Advice:

There’s ten shots in a pack, but only nine above. One didn’t come out at all, it was completely black. I set the light meter, the flash fired, but alas nothing. Sometimes that happens with instant film. You get a dud. While disappointing, it doesn’t happen enough to really bother me all that much. Just one of the downsides of shooting with any film, light can be a fickle mistress. 

The camera also has no focusing capabilities besides the fixed focus it already has. So don’t get too close to your subject unless you purchase a close up adapter (you can find them all over amazon and ebay). I’d say a good rule of thumb without one though would be to keep all subjects at about arms length at minimum. 

The camera does best in natural light, but it’s a fun party camera. The flash will go off for every photo with varying levels on intensity based on what you set the light meter to. If you want to diffuse the flash cover it with masking tape. Or if you want to turn it off completely try black gaffers tape! 

The camera is going to feel large compared to other non instant film options, but I don’t think it’s overly large. I know the 7s is bigger, which is one of the reasons I went with the 8 over it. This would fit in just about medium sized and up purses. And fits very well in a new camera bag I got from Jototes (review coming soon!).

Overall I love this camera. If I’m not bringing it to document a party or a fun night out, I usually take about a pack of film (ten shots) a week. I love adding them to my project life scrapbook, and to my private journals. It’s nice to be able to have an affordable instant film option for those of us that miss 600 film that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg. 

Daily Life : The First Few Weeks Of March

First can we talk about how horrible this winter has been in Ohio? Like terrible, snowy, -20 cold. I’m over it. Yesterday was 70 degrees out, and this evening there’s a snow storm. This weather has been keeping me a bit down in the dumps, but I’ve been making small efforts to keep it positive. 

Brian and I have been doing some freezer cooking to make evenings a bit easier on me. I make dinner every night. Sometimes between yoga, my full work day, photo jobs, and trying to fit into some sewing, it’s literally the last thing I want to do. It takes a full day for us to make about two weeks and half worth of food, but in the end is totally worth it. I love seeing how colorful all the food is once it’s prepped. I actually bought a subscription to onceamonthmeals.com. Which has some pretty good menus, and lots of dietary options. We use mainly the paleo menu, and it’s rocked so far. That’s a regular old link btw, I bought the subscription with my own hard earned money 😉

In an effort to get outside Brian’s family’s normal Friday Lent restaurant choice, we tried a new place in Cincinnati called Crave. It wasn’t anything to write home about, even if the Sushi boats were impressive. My main qualms with the place were the overly sweet, huge, cocktails. Everyone at the tables drinks must have been at least 50% simple syrup, ugh. 

The dogs have been covered in mud for practically all of march thus far. Thank god I had the foresight to choose a couch with washable slip covers. I guess I could be one of those people who don’t let their pets on the furniture ( Hi Mom! ), but they’re just too cuddly at this point in their lives to deny them. 

I got new custom wooden USB’s for client photos and proofing! They’re really high quality and such a better way to send digital copies out now that many computers don’t even have a disc drive. Read More about them on my photography portfolio 

I went to Macy’s to pick up some clothing I’ve been wanting for europe, they were having some pretty amazing sales. I ended up being so under budget I found this great bed set for under 50$! It was originally just under 200 and it really brightens up the bedroom. I’m such an old lady the new bedding can totally be the highlight of my day. 

I totally love having short hair with fringe, but it’s not a very wash and wear hair style. Well at least when you’ve got crazy kinky Italian hair. But armed with every hot hair tool I own, and a big old can of cheap hairspray (the cheap stuff always seems to work the best) I manage. 

Finally I know this might not be the most appetizing photo on the planet, but man was it good! Peanut butter banana chocolate chip french toast. Totally horrible for you, but totally worth it. 

Anything interesting going on in your neck of the week readers? Hope your spring is feeling much springier than mine! 

 

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Sewing Dry-spell Over! Or Simplicity 1810

So I’ve actually found a bit of time to sew, with my first wedding of the season all wrapped up (I’m a photographer FYI). I chose something simple, because I have a few daunting projects coming up, mainly a evening gown for my brothers wedding. So I choose simplicity 1810, which was really simple. 




I’ll try and remember not to wear a black bra with those one again ._. This fabric was pretty sheer, maybe I need to make a full slip to be able to wear this in public ha!

Yes, this is quite an optimistic dress weather wise. I’m hoping the midwest won’t get anymore snow or below zero temperatures! I’m a summer girl and this winter has had me down in the dumps. It was in the 50’s today, so maybe there’s hope yet! 

Pattern Description: 

pullover dress in two lengths, tunic or top with shoulder pleat detailing, sleeve variation and tie belt at the waist and pull-on pants. Simplicity sewing pattern.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?:

Very close! I feel like the model has way less ease than what I ended up with. Her skirt seems a bit less full.

 

Were the instructions easy to follow? 

The only part I actually read was attaching the pleated part to the yoke and setting the ties into the back darts. Those instructions were east enough to follow for someone whose sewn a bit more like I have. But it’s just a simple facing with bias bound armholes, and I could do both of those in my sleep at this point. 

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?:

I liked how to waist ties are sewn into the back dart. It makes for a much cleaner look that just having a fabric tie. I also like that the facings were sewing to the bias binding on the armholes. Helps keep a floppy facing down where it should be.

Fabric Used:

Some old light weight quilting cotton that I got very cheap on ebay. This dress was a wearable muslin to see if I liked the pattern.  I have some really beautiful silky black and white floral fabric in mind since this went well. 

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:

I Had to take out about an inch from the side seam armpits. Were talking huge armholes, and stuff that like is normally tight on me. I might try and see what happens when I size down, but it’s not too horrible. 

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?

Sure, but definitely keeping in mind how much ease this pattern had in the armpits. But it’s a quick sew and would make for a good summer dress. 

Conclusion:

As long as you’re okay with checking the fit, this is an easy pattern that makes a very comfortable dress. The way the fabric waist ties are inset are interesting.