Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Before the Road

Sorry I've been a bit MIA over the past week.  I truly wasn't here.  I was amidst great friends in Chicago prepping for my Best Friends Wedding that happened this past Sunday.  I had the privilege of being the Maid of Honor, or as I like to call it Bitch of Honor.  I love my best friend a lot.  I ran back and forth in the city, parking cars, running errands and keeping her cool. It was also pouring rain was I was doing these tasks.  I drove in from Columbus, Ohio Wednesday night.  We met to run some errands and do dinner then I drove off to a friends apartment in Wrigleyville where I stayed till the rehearsal on Saturday.  Before I left this was the outfit that I was wearing.  Something a little casual and fun.

Drapey Navy Cardigan from Anthropologie
Tokidoki VS Marvel Spiderman Shirt
Navy American Apparel knit mini skirt
Harajuku lovers Yellow Jelly Wedges from DSW

Close up of my lovely shoes.  If you look for these get them in a size larger then your normally wear.  They are a bit narrow at the front and run all around a little small.  Since they are rubber they will not stretch with your feet.  I got these as a present to myself for my past birthday since DSW was so kind of give me a little discount.

I have a few more posts to make from my Chicago Trip.  Sorry these is nothing on sewing at the moment.  Currently my studio space is a wreck.  It is situated in the basement where we have a non-functional Air Conditioner that is being replaced tomorrow.  In preparation for that all the shelving and storage normally surrounding the HVAC and A/C was displaced to my area.  I'd be lucky to find my scissors in that mess.  On top of the missing AC we found our one and only bathroom to be severely clogged and turns out we need to get our main-stack water line replaced completely.  Now the final kicker I caught a cold of course while running around in the rain.  I am a tad miserable and going to work on some hand sewing projects till after the Midwest Craft Caucus.

If everything goes without a hitch in the house tomorrow for repairs we will be hosting Grace Dobush writer of Crafty SuperStar during the Craft Caucus.  I'm very excited about this!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Not so Classy

Just having a little fun.  It's been a bit since and OTD.  The weather in Columbus, Ohio has been less then inspiring with this Monsoon type weather lingering and randomly pouring over us.  I decided to get out of my funk with some friends dressing up to go rock out some Karaoke!

Silk Flower hair Clip - Chicago Agaci Store
Grey Knit Blazer - Zara
Love your Librarian T-shirt - Alison Rose
Pleated Heart skirt - Zara
Galon Shoes - Karmaloop

A close up of the hotness which are my shoes in electric blue.

Just me and my jokers Arnell and T.J hanging out for some good times!  It's hard to believe I have known Arnell for about 15 years and T.J. 13 years.  The way time passes can be so funny.  It seems just like yesterday when Arnell and I were working at the comic store together and meeting T.J. and some friends at the Blue Danube for some late night food.  Great times, good memories and many more to come. 

Happy Weekend Everyone!

Thursday, May 19, 2011


Last week a bit rough and I feel like I have just come out of the darkness and awakened to a new look on life. I was having a bit of an existential crisis but I'm good now. Moving on with my life and some profound revelations and decisions were made.  It will be interesting to see what lies in my future the next couple of years.  To sum it all up I am a passionate person who needs to be challenged in my life.  What those Challenges are can be defined by a myriad of things.  What is important is that I know what those things are and I keep myself in check lest I fall off the edge again.  Depression is no fun kids and it is even less fun to talk about and hear from other people.  Best way to fight it is head on, get your bearings and remember what is important.  Don't focus on what put you there but focus on what will bring you out.  Triggers can be anything but they aren't necessarily the reason for your downward spiral and that can be a tough pill to shallow.

Now let's be done with this serious talk and get to the FUN!  Things that made my week that I love!

1. Finishing a collection.  No matter how small it is I was happy to finish my little trio of Squibs from Rivet.  They are like my stress balls at work, but I actually just pet them and pose them around my cubicle in epic fights against my mini Godzilla.

2. Green Tea Ice Cream.  I love how it is not too sweet and has this sort of grainy taste to it yet it is still cold and smooth.  It also feels not as bad for you as typical ice cream even though I know it's just a farce.  It is the perfect way to end a great meal of sushi.

 3. Ridiculous Karaoke. I LOVE Karaoke and this week I was fortunate enough to get a double dose with friends.  The best is when you get to pick songs for each other.  Like here my friend TJ is trying to keep up with Snow singing "Informer".  I have a few songs types I like to hit every time I'm singing. 

Diva song so I can Belt it out
Ridiculous Rap song that no one would suspect coming from a little Asian Girl (Eminem & Beastie boyz)
Duet with a friend
Song in a Asian Language
Rock out song

Last night my song list included:
I will Love again - Lara Fabian
My Name is - Enimem
Juke Box Hero - Foreigner
Sabotage - Beastie Boyz
Fu*k You - Cee Lo Green
The Sign - Ace of Base

4. Going to the Zoo.  We do this every year for my birthday and it never gets old or tiring.  I feel like every single the animals are doing something new or different.  The tigers were especially active that day.  I got a bunch of cute photos of them grooming each other.  We also spied a Flying fox just straight up taking a piss right in front of us, very odd.  The Artic foxes were hilarious because they were not all cute white and fluffly like their photos.  They were molting, mangy, smelled bad and yelling at each other while rolling in the dirt.  You can spy more of my zoo photos here!

5. A Mascot.  Lastly this week with it being a little rough for me I needed a little pick me up just for me. I picked up this little guy once again from Rivet.  I've been reading "Game of Thrones" completely unrelated to the fact that is it now an HBO series.  The idea of these kids having the direwolves was the first thing that popped into my head when I spied this little guy.  I had to have him as my mascot.  His Character is that he is a magician.  I like to think he brings a little magic into my life in that he makes me smile whenever I look at him.  I keep him with me in my purse at all times.  When I feel a little down or nervous I pull him out.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Book Review- The Dressmaker's Handbook of Couture Sewing Techniques

 First I want to point out that this title is misleading and harps on one of my most hated misinterpretations of the word "couture".  What I was hoping for in getting this book were some wonderful finishing techniques of hand sewing done in couture.  What I found was vastly different yet still useful and good in it's own right. 

 Still having that initial bad taste in my mouth it continued to beat the dead horse by repeatedly using the word "couture" in bad context.  Those first pages made me really want to Hulk Rage but I battled through it and kept an open mind as to what the real contents of the book were and not their misgivings. 

Yes still beating the dead horse but the book showed potential with clean photos showing examples of what the contents were.  It was also helpful in explaining some different sewing room tools and perhaps some uncommon tools that the hobby seamstress was not aware existed.

Getting into the instructions in the book was easy enough.  Once again the photos very clearly demonstarted the parts of the process.  The writing was clear but the layout a little haphazard between the wording and the example photos but that is one of the dangers of a pictorial instruction books. A lot of the text gets jumbled or lost or mixed up due to trying to focus on the photos themselves instead of combining the two.  The photos can take over the entire focus of the pages turning them more graphical then informational.

My biggest complaint (after torturing the word couture) was that half the book was spent on necklines in different forms of finishing which after the first two the steps are all the same it is just the fabrications are different.  Then from the neckline they moved to the hemline doing the same thing where it was the same finishing but in different fabrications. 

The overall look of the book was pleasant and the author was a bit obsessed with Christian Dior designed by Galliano & Valentino.  Those seemed to be the prevalent designers she kept referring back to whenever there was a new chapter starting. 
To conclude this is not a bad book (except for the dead horse beating of couture) but I've seen better.  It is a good book if you want some clear examples and pictures of just finishing necklines and for waistbands.  I didn't feel their hem finishing was any better or worse then the Sewing Bible or Martha Stewart. I wouldn't buy this book, I felt I got everything I needed when I borrowed it at the Library.  It just didn't have enough to make it into my collection.

OH Giveaways!

What don't people love about them?
I am hoping to win myself an Ipad 2 through this particular Giveaway on "Design for Mankind"

I implore you not to enter with me so my chances are higher (no seriously I want this Ipad 2)
But if you must here is the Link and a little less of a friendship from me ( I kid!).

Serious friends the Ipad 2 is very coveted by me and well a bit out of my expenses.  I imagine being able to endless enjoy ebooks, some knitting patterns have at hand entertainment in the form of Netflix and Angry Birds.  Realistically it would be a welcome companion to keep up with all the blogs I read and quite a bit lighter then toting around my netbook whom I am still in love with but alas your little screen is evil to my eyes.  Not to mention all the cute cases out there for these slim goodies.

Monday, May 16, 2011

The Olsen Twins

I need to start by saying these girls are FANTASTIC.  Despite the fame from being child stars on Full House they have risen above it all to be respectable designers and grown up celebrities.  It is scary and amazing how much these twins are worth, that however isn't why I wanted to bring this article to attention.  Like I said just a few moments ago they have made themselves respectable in a way that most celebrities who try to be designers have not.  They are not trying to launch off of their own name and fame like so many haplessly do.  In fact they were quite the opposite wanting no one to really know their connection and keeping it on the hush.  They are also designing after my own heart, knowing their price range and being practical with who can afford it.  Despite their own youth they are setting their demographic for the older more mature women who has been in her career path and successful for a while.  Very much the same demographic that I like to design for myself.  Sure there are some younger people who can afford them and me but not so many do because they are wanting to dress for trends and be flashy as opposed to stoic and well dressed with an edge.
I feel like this article really shows how their maturity far surpasses that of some other current NYC designers that have been in this game longer.  These girls are powers to keep a lookout for with their thoughtfulness and head for business.

Enjoy the Article!

Thursday, May 12, 2011


Having been in Chicago once again this past weekend I have many things that happened that I love and I hope to experience over again and again.

1. Megabus.  Or should I refer to it as the reason why I love it, Cheap transportation.  Once upon a time when I was in college airfare cost a mere $90 for a roundtrip ticket from Chicago to Columbus.  Nowadays I'd be lucky to get a round trip ticket for under $200.  It is classier then a Greyhound Bus, double deck buses are fun to ride on for the adventurous, cheap, It has free wifi and 2 outlets per each row of seats.  It was also had some great timing such as leaving at 10:50pm Friday and Arriving at 6:30am Saturday.  They also make a pitstop so you can grab a bite to eat at Mcdonalds and use the restroom there instead of the one on the bus.

2. Chicago itself, duh.  This trip now having my new DSLR I felt I could take the time and appreciate taking some great photos of the city and the immense buildings.  I already have some fierce images in my mind that I want to photograph the next trip. Mostly the fountains that I enjoyed as a college student there.  Fountains in Chicago hold so many fond and relaxing memories for me.

3. Spring.  The new buds right before they bloom is one of my favorite things in spring. It is that moment right before full life and vitality.  It is like the promise of something beautiful and new.

4. High Tea.  Nothing more relaxing then being with a bunch of friends taking High Tea together in a posh hotel lobby.  Chatting the hours away while consuming delicious finger foods and desserts.  The macaroons and Meringues were heavenly!  We took our High Tea at the Lobby at The Peninsula Hotel

5. Using a Diana Lens for DSLR.  One of my early Birthday present from Andy before my trip was the Diana Lens from Photojojo with DSLR attachment.  It was really hard to get back into a full manual setting mode in my head but once I did the photos were wonderful!  Dreamy and a little blurred but in the good way that Diana cameras are known for. 

6. Taking beauty in the mundane.  This was just a simple photo I took at Tea but I love how it turned out.  Ordinary objects all around us having their own beauty in design and placement.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

I turned 30

Yep that's me around Midnight May 7th turning to 8th my Birthday at the Drawing room in Chicago with my Best friend at her Bachlerotte weekend.  I turned 30.  The big three zero.  Do I feel achy, older,or like life is just starting?  No not at all.  I feel a bit melancholy and reflective.  Not a combination I enjoy to have my mind wrapped around.

I think it's not because I've turned 30, not because I'm getting married, not because the party brought up multitudes of conversation about ex's and our crazy party pasts. However all three things at once is a lot to bear on one's mind.  Especially when it turns out you were the Samantha of your friends in more ways then you care to admit (even though I just did).

Being 30 means nothing to me.  I am still me.  I had a few goals from my list of 30 before 30 completed and I feel good that I got some of them done but it wasn't life changing.  Sitting back and reflecting on my life through stories of bad dates, crazy ex boyfriends and life in college is a little jarring but still not life changing.  It was who I was and what I did.  I never really thought about all of my dating history that much before.  I think there was once in a college sculpture class that I did something about a reflection on my dating life but that was when I was still so young and just tasting life as much as I could.  The part of Samantha (from Sex and the City), I was probably the epitome of during those days.  Now I am still her but minus the promiscuity of the character.  To put it simply I still find that I love life, that is something that has never changed.  I like to get out go meet people and be active.  I love going out and doing things or being social with good friends.  I heartily enjoy planning and throwing parties or events.  I am still impulsive and headstrong, I like to do things that make me happy and make my friends happy.  I have deep seeded loyalties where if you get on the wrong side of me you will wish for a quick death.  These are the traits that I feel mirror her character.  Not to forget she had some amazing clothes in the series for the time. Especially her love of flashy jewelry.

The one thing that will change me is the wedding.  I will change my name.  I will be looking forward to being a future mother.  I will still be headstrong, stubborn and full of energy but I imagine instead of it being parties, hanging out and events it will be more focused into teaching these small parts of me to be their own individuals and support them as they do fantastic things. Or kill them trying!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Fashion Industry Mixer at Roharik Studios

Several weekends ago I attended a Fashion Photography Industry Mixer at Roharik Studios where my pal Matthew Roharik was hosting it. He does this from time to time and from what I hear they are always fantastic. This was the first time I went because all the other times were short notice and I was already booked. With my life and busy schedule if it's not on my calender at least a week before you can usually count me out.

Since I had gotten the invitation weeks ahead of time I put this on my calendar with a side of guilt for missing all the others.  I was surprised and happy with how big of a turnout it was.  I went having no idea what to expect aside from the pronounced dentists chair set up for the photo booth.  The place was jam packed with people dressed to the nines!  It was funny to see the studio turned essentially club for this event having worked in there before on a photo shoot. 
Photographers I get. MUA's (makeup artists) I get. Hair stylist I get. models I do not or should I say Models/hair/MUA/photographer I do not get.  Pick your field and do it.  Do not try to be the do all be all model.  It's not pretty.  There were a lot of not pretty, I'm not talking visually just personalities and bad networking which is why I tend to avoid these sorts of events.  It was like every time a girl spotted a camera she had to drop shoulders and be a model and flirt it up.  If not for some awesome friends that I already knew there and brought with me I might of bolted like a long tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs.

I'm not saying the whole event is negative or bad.  It was very well put together just not my cup of tea.  It was nevertheless impressive display of talent in our city all around.  It also did it's purpose in letting people flaunt themselves in front of the camera and mingle.

The good points were seeing people like my hair stylists outside of salon chair.  Her name is Stephanie Mahone.  She has been the one hair stylist that I have trusted to do my hair color in over 6 years.  Amazingly nice and a real pro at coloring and cut.  You can get her on Twitter and Cbusr

I came prepared with my fun loving friends Beth whom I work in the same building as by day.  Also my former intern Emily who I still keep in touch with and enjoy the company of.   We made the best of a frighteningly outgoing event by bantering with each other and judging others (I know, I know not the nicest thing to do but models need to be able to take constructive criticism).
Here we are totally not fashion uncomfortably out of place making the best of our shameless selves.

This is how other people used the Photobooth, looking all pretty and putting together intricate production photos.  Below is how we did it.  Once again completely shameless and just trying to make lemonade from lemons and drinking it with a lot of mirth.

On the way out I caught a few other friends that I've worked. Angela the model in the middle who I've worked with countless times and my favorite Photographer to work with Chip Willis.  His work is amazing.  Check out his Blog and Portfolio when you get a chance (NSFW)

Finally here are the photos the came out of our silliness from the Event Wall.

Hope you enjoyed the lemonade!

Friday, May 06, 2011

Altering Time

This shirt was once a dress.  Another treasure I procured from the Flea Swap at The Gangway.
The dress looked roomy enough until I tried to put it on.  I could barely zip it up and the bell shape was completely lost. I took out the side seams and went to the maximum safe seam allowance to no avail.  I ended up chopping it in half and using the bottom fabric to inset a box pleat to the back seam where the zipper was to make it into this cute shirt. It worked out really well since it also helped to balance the design since there were already the box pleats in the sleeves of the dress making another one with the larger bow in the back.  I was so in love with the sleeves I couldn't just part with this without trying to make it work.  It's funny because everyone who has seen is so far has asked me if it's vintage.  I'm not sure myself.  Someone else made it I can tell b/c the inside isn't professionally finished and I can see someone else has taken it in and out several times.  Whomever originally sewed this garment together was not an especially experienced sewer but they got the job done and it looked great from the outside.

With it I am wearing my silver little Tomcat locket, Express Re-rock ultra skinny jeans, pearl white globe earrings and my new Gold BCBGeneration shoes.

Thursday, May 05, 2011

TiLT - Beauty Edition

I feel like the other day I did a serious and personal post so today's TiLT I wanted to focus on something a little frivolous.  These are my top 5 beauty products that I am loving and using everyday.

1. Hope in a tinted moisturizer.  I have always been a huge fan of Philosophy products and especially hope in a jar during the winter months.  I was ecstatic to try out their tinted moisturizer.  It is lovely, not thick and chunky at all and still packs a moisture punch that is light.  I wear this easily with powder over it and skip the foundation.

2. Urban Decay's Eyeshadow Primer Potion.   Long gone are the days or creased eyeshadow or even difficult eyeshadow that won't stay on my lid.  I admittedly haven't used a lot of eyeshadow primers but after using this one and finding it to do it's job just right I don't feel the need to continue the search.  It comes in 3 colors and this particular one gives a soft gold shimmer underneath.

3. MAC Super Slick Liquid Eye Liner. I'm not as big into MAC products like I once was but I had been searching for a new alternative liquid liner that wasn't going to clump up if I made several passes over the same spot on my lid.  I came across this by impulse and that was probably one of the best impulse buys I have made in a long time.  Just like the name it is super slick.  The only annoyance factor is that it will take a little bit of time to dry.  I still like it much better then the liquid last liner that uses a brush to apply.  I feel like I have more control with this foam tip applicator.

4. Maybelline's Great Lash Big Mascara. I always come back to this standard for mascara.  It does exactly what it says it'll do giving me great big lashes with no fuss and no need to re-apply repeatedly.  I can also easily find it at any drug store or supermarket instead of trucking myself all the way to a Sephora.

5. Hello Kitty Eau de Parfum.  Yah that's right I'm rocking the Hello Kitty, but not because of the brand.  I'm a hard one to please when it comes to perfumes.  I'm very picky and I like mine flowery, not overpowering, fresh and with as little as that hard perfume scent as possible.  Hello Kitty gave me all those things also the convenience of it being in a roller ball.  I LOVE being able to have my perfumes in a roller ball style so they are slim and fit nicely for travel and in my makeup bag.

Are there any daily beauty supplies that you can't be without?  I'd love to hear what they are!