Tuesday, February 28, 2012

My DIY neon lace clutch

Do you do things like this? Go to Goodwill, wander over to the shambles that is the Home department, idly finger some atrocious plastic placemats and think, "These are so Christopher Kane Spring 2011."

Regardless, you will like these neon lace clutches you can make from placemats, some vinyl and a zipper for an easy spring or summer accessory.

These cost me a dollar a piece to make (compared to $530 for the real ones from Christopher Kane.) Plus, you can drop these in the pool with no lasting harm.

My tutorial is featured over at examiner.com and includes a step-by-step slideshow.

Monday, February 27, 2012

DIY kitchen island inspiration

The Bromeliads have been planning for awhile, in the broad theoretical sense, to make a tall kitchen table.

It needs to fit our existing bar stools and our eensy kitchen. I'm thinking something sleek and low-key and smaller than any of these. I like the idea of a waterfall table to hide all the legs (people and chair).

I have sort of a kooky idea of using IKEA counters as the top and sides. Mr. Bromeliad will probably shudder.

Spring Fall flower

This could be mistaken for an early spring flower. It's actually a late fall flower that never died. First time I've ever seen this in NYC. We've got pansies, too. Fall pansies.

Taken on the Brooklyn Heights Promenande. And it's not Instagram. Just weird light.

Friday, February 24, 2012

My DIY fitted striped top

I can't seem to get tired of stripes and currently own four striped tops and/or sweaters. What I lacked, however, was a fitted striped top, which I believe is a distinction that readers of this blog will appreciate.

I took a Talbot's top picked up for a few dollars at Goodwill and decided to transform it from loose and casual to fitted, as the inspiration photos below demonstrate.

First step, as you may have figured out by my previous refashions, is to take off the sleeves. (Mark which sleeve is which in case you are spatially challenged like me and can't tell after they are off.) Then pin fit the sides.

To show you my advancement in the refashioning area, note my new favorite tool - washable markers. After you get your fit right and verify that you're taking in equal amounts on both sides, mark the seam, then turn the pins perpendicular to the seam so you can sew over them.

To show you my regression in the refashioning area, also note that I overly fitted the sides. See the hourglass shape? You don't want that. A gentle "C" shape is about as much curve as you should put into a knit top. I've made this mistake, oh, two or three times now.

The shoulders of the original top drooped, so I marked a seam about an inch in from the original using my new marker. Then I trimmed off the excess fabric, leaving a half-inch seam allowance.

As my previous cardigan tutorial showed, you take your sleeve right side out and insert it into the body of the top, which is inside out. Pin the sleeve opening and sew.

Since my sleeves were also loose, I pin fitted them a little tighter, marked the seam and sewed these as well.

It's not perfect. A bit too tight and a little weird under the pits. But definitely more wearable.

Now I just need to find a striped top with wide stripes that is also fitted, another distinction I think you all appreciate.

How many stripey things do you own?

Images: Masmoniquilla; Refinery 29; Thrild via The Mannequin

Thursday, February 23, 2012

DIY rings and hot pink jeans

Here are two DIYs that make great reuse of items that might otherwise be tossed.

Jennifer Brasher at Two Butterflies came up with a bright idea for giving new life to odd vintage clip-on earrings. She turned them into rings.

And check out the Smartest and His Artist for instructions on how to bleach and then dye an old pair of jeans. Jump into colorblocking for less. (Also worth a visit just for the extremely funny profile photo.)

Monday, February 20, 2012

DIY photo collage

Just came across this via Effortless Style. It's the creation of photographer Annie McElwain.

Personally I find having a lot of photos around to be stressful. All those itty bitty frames. All those random shapes and colors.

This suits my OCD tendencies nicely.

Grids. So soothing.

Dear blogging friends

Please turn off word verification for comments. It was always bad. Now it's terrible. You're driving people to Pinterest.

In Blogger, it's under the Settings tab and Comments subsection.

If you're worried some madman will leave a crazed remark, turn on Comment moderation. It can even send you an E-mail any time you need to approve a comment.

Bless you.

Friday, February 17, 2012

DIY New York Fashion Week

Get nearly two dozen DIY ideas from New York Fashion Week 2012 at Examiner.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Tents and tree houses

When one is stuck at home in a tiny apartment on a rainy day with a head cold, it's no surprise that one dreams of camping.

Luxury camping that is, otherwise known as "glamping" (glamour camping).

I'll bring the s'mores.

Most via AFAR magazine; Unknown; Oberoi Hotels; Kasbah Tamadot, Marrakech; Banyan Tree Maldives Madivaru; Savute Elephant Camp; Maho Bay Camps; Amani Khas

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Missoni for Goodwill

If you missed the mixed martial Missoni event for Target this summer, you could get a chance at Goodwill, a regular benefactor of Target clearance items.

Check out shopgoodwill.com, Goodwill's somewhat sleepy online auction where Missoni flats are currently bidding at about $12.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Poor girl's J.Crew?

Guess what retailer is doing a pretty good job these days of knocking of J.Crew for a quarter or less of the price tag?

Did you guess H&M?