what a feelin'... (stirrup legwarmers)

here are the Lion Brand legwarmers I previously posted about in the Flashdance post.

...and yes, I actually did dance around in them. didn't think about YouTube'ing "What A Feeling" until just now, but I did dance around in them while listening to "She's A Maniac". ^_^
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almost doesn't count

...but this is as far as I'll get with this piece in 2010. as I take a break from sewing to crank out knitted items for this icy winter weather we're having, I bring to you my un-hemed cozy! (p.s. the stripe orientation is different in the back because, well, I like being different. hence, the orange & grey stripes. ^_^)
it's been on the mannequin w/ the necklace since November 13th. LOL. this was inspired by a cashmere cozy at...I don't remember where because that was back in July/August. it was lush and had a little bit of lurex mixed with the yarn. my friend used it for the development of her girl's 2011 fall line and I was not about to shell out $198 for a light weight sweater I didn't need. the body was really simple so I measured it, did a rough sketch and jotted down the measurements to create my own pattern pieces.
made the patterns out of old newspaper on Nov. 12th and had it all cut out and serged together the next day. just need to set up the regular sewing machine for a double needle hem finish...

see...I did pay attention in my paper pattern making classes!


Flashdance was on one of the many Showtime movie channels recently (thanks, FIOS!!!). it's amazing seeing an old movie you haven't watched in years and then you remember why you loved it. for me it was the 80's hair,the gorgeous Jennifer Beals working in a welding factory and of course her ballet audition.
I've always loved legwarmers but can never find a pair that are super long for the extra slouchy look. so of course after watching Flashdance again I thought "duh...why not make a pair yourself?". after searching and searching...and more searching (seriously it took me 2.5 days)....I found this pattern from Lion Brand, Sausalito Stirrup Socks:very different from what's in the stores now and would keep my feet warm when wearing flats in this freezing NYC winter weather. luckily when I went to Lion Brand Studio, I found out they are having a 15% off sale for the yarn for the entire month of December. ^_^

here's JLo's "I'm Glad" video just for kicks (notice she has on stirrup legwarmers too)...

sequins and rhinestones and pearls...OH MY!

I had the pleasure of seeing Burlesque when it premiered in theaters, November 24th. talk about inspiration to make beautiful things! as soon as I saw one of the dancers, Coco, in a striped bustier, black skirt and striped thigh-highs I was in love. (too bad I can't find an image cuz it was HOT.) throughout the movie the costumes were amazing. Kristen Bell at one point wore a black mini-mesh catsuit w/ strategically placed lace pieces. (again, could not find this image. -_-) Here are some of the images I did find: (click image to enlarge)

oh yeah...the soundtrack is all kinds of awesome, too!!


so I'm finally sewing. absolutely love my serger!! I'd post pics of what I'm making but nothing is completely finished (this doesn't surprise you if you really know me outside this blog lol). just need to hem...everything. but here's a sneak peek at the fabrics I'm working with:

some of the grey heather (very little) was used in the previous post for the necklace. more finished products coming soon ^_^.

sorry for the crappy photos but the lighting in my apartment sucks and they are cellphone shots.

fabric, beads & patience

lots and lots of patience. i didn't think this would have taken me so long to make, but a las, i am a perfectionist. although i love how it came out, i can still see things that could have been better. oh well.

cotton/polyester jersey, plastic beads, polyester thread...and again, lots of patience. my favorite part is the flower! it's made up of 11 separate petals all hand-sewn together. took a while to decide what kind of flower look I wanted for this. love how fluffy it came out. ^_^

these are the beads I used. these were the most normal ones I could find in Bead World. at $6 for about 50 beads, I didn't mind at all ;o).
11/15/10 edited to add: the above is my version of this necklace. the creator said she actually loves mine better. sweetness!

one cowl...FINISHED!

i knew eventually I'd finish at least one of my projects. so here it is: a simple seed stitched cowl.

75 stitches worked in seed stitch pattern until it measured approx. 8". this was made for my good friend, Michelle. hope she likes it...

I ♥ Him....

Christian Siriano.

no matter how much time passes, I remember watching season 4 of Project Runway hoping from the beginning he'd win. he's insanely creative and hilarious to boot. we could be besties if I ever met him.

check out the latest from his Spring/Summer 2011 Collection (click photo to enlarge):

project overload

have you ever come to the realization that you want to do waaay too much at once? that's where I am at this moment. not only do I have 3 unfinished knitted projects, there are at least 5 things I said I would sew up before it gets cold. well....it's cold! not freezing cold, but definitely cold enough for a sweater or light jacket. anywho, seeing all these things for some reason makes me not want to finish anything. very overwhelming :o(. I know I'm not alone in this one.

what do you do to keep track of projects? what's your motivation to keep going?

McCall's pattern shopping

I realized the other day that I haven't sewn anything since graduating college in December 2004. that's ridiculous considering the fact that I bought 2 (yes..2) dress forms since then. in my defense, I did sell the 1st one (a foam body) to a friend after buying the 2nd one (a collapsible professional form). oh...and let's not forget about the serger purchased this past July. maybe I just like buying things to have them around?

anyway. I really want to make a jacket soon. seems like all the jackets I've seen lately are just not doing it for me. nothing calls to me. eallen116 in the "sewing listas" group from Hairlista.com posted a link to this pattern after I mentioned wanting to sew a jacket/coat there:
Misses'/Women's Capelets and Belt

and then, i saw this:
Misses' Lined Jackets and Belt

both patterns are super cute and simple...and on their way to me!! I think I'll modify the cape to have slit pockets in the front. and the jacket to have a zipper closure or snaps instead of buttons. maybe, in a girly tweed herringbone? hmm...

free goodies, yay!!

when people decide to give me new yarn "just because", I feel extra-loved. this bag of yummyness was given to me by a friend that used bits of them for a Fall 2011 color palette (she's a childrenswear designer).

she came to my desk asking if i wanted some yarn. my very appropriate response was only "*gasp* OHMIGOD!". but now i realize this just adds more projects & ideas to the never-ending list of things i want to make.

let's try this again

there's nothing more frustrating than substituting a yarn and then realizing a few rows into the project that it's not working. that's what happened while I was making this:

Ha'Penny Loop Cowl by Staceyjoy Elkin (on Ravelry)

the pattern calls for 4 strands of DK weight held together. i don't have the patience (or that much DK yarn in my stash) to do all that, so i figured Lion Brand Wool Ease Thick & Quick (in Citron...so pretty!) would work. wrong! the stitches are not defined at all and 4 rows in it already feels heavy. AND apparently some of the stitches twisted when i joined...*sigh*

obviously, chunky/bulky yarn would have made more sense. soooooo in a few minutes i'll be frogging this and re-casting using Lion Brand Wool Ease Chunky in Pumpkin. this shall be a traveling project since my subway commute is 40-55 minutes.

jersey knits, here I come!

I bought a serger!! (a few weeks ago actually....) a Brother 1034D to be exact:

i've seen a lot of good reviews on this one. this is definitely going to pay for itself soon because 85% of my wardrobe is knit. have yet to set it up, but I'm insanely excited to start making clothes for fall. purchased some jersey and a leopard printed rib jersey....just cuz. :o)

fashion: reality tv VS real life

one of the things i hate about family gatherings is the question "why don't you try out for Project Runway?" or "why haven't you started your own line yet?". people really don't understand all the work it takes to make clothing that actually sells and withstands time. i barely have enough time to cook dinner for myself by the time i get home (besides the fact that it takes me an hour, sometimes more, to get home from work in the first place). it's hard enough to work in the fashion industry, so i don't think i personally have enough patience to go at it on my own.

reality shows like Project Runway (there's a marathon now on Lifetime Real Women), the Fashion Show and Make My Line have people outside of the industry believing it's just so simple to start a line. and with Lauren Conrad and Whitney Port from the Hills having their own lines, it doesn't make it any better. but has anyone actually noticed none of the Project Runway winners were truly successes? aside from Christian Siriano, does anyone remember the other winners names without the help of Google? and whatever happened to all of Lauren's jersey dresses and flowy woven tops? recent episodes of The City show Whitney struggling to make sales of her Spring line because not everyone agrees with her desire to "design flirty, fun pieces for myself and my friends".

that right there is the point: having a successful clothing line isn't about designing for yourself and your friends. you have to take yourself outside the box and focus on the customer (or the region you want to sell in). Jennifer Lopez's Sweetface line was really cute, but at the time the customer she was going for were already in the Baby Phat world.

sorry for ranting... it just gets annoying having to go through the same speech repeatedly.

anywho, here are some links that i found interesting:
Life of a Corporate Fashion Designer
Don't tell me to go on Project Runway

summer obsession: tie dye

I've never been a fan of tie dye until recently. It seems like this year there are more contrasting bright tie-dye patterns, which are more interesting than the tonal ones from previous years. (At least they are to me.) Here are a few fabrics from ebay seller zanzadesigns (visit the store here):

and here is an Apple Bottoms dress I had to buy.

so I've been slacking...

...for a few months now. no knitting, no sketching, no sewing. no blogging obviously. nothing actually productive. Just a lot of working and sleeping. :o(

Instead of physically sifting through my bin of yarn, I went into my Ravelry account to see how much yarn I have laying around. What I saw was embarrassing:

And this isn't even all of it! There are also 4 projects I haven't finished, 2 of which were started almost 2 years ago. My sewing machine is on it's table, buried in a corner behind bins of fabric. There are stacks of nearly empty sketchbooks on my desk (gotten years ago from school but still). There's a point to me saying all of this: perhaps if my procrastinating/laziness is spoken out loud and put on the internet, I'll somehow get motivated to finish things.

Let's see what happens!

is it just me...

...or have there been a lot of characters being shot in the season finales of shows? I had a conversation with a coworker about Chuck being shot in the finale of Gossip Girl and 2 characters being shot on One Tree Hill (don't judge me!). she then told me about all the shooting in the Grey's Anatomy finale. WTF is up with that?! what's with all the violent endings now? no one was shot in Desperate Housewives this season's ending but a man was blowing up in a car....

have the writers lost creative ways of keeping us interested to come back next season? they need to step up their game before we all stop watching "real" TV shows and get addicted to reality shows. and that right there is a whole OTHER conversation...

costume designer Colleen Atwood

speaking of Tim Burton, Colleen Atwood has designed the costumes for a lot of his movies. (see her work list at IMDB.) my favorite piece was Christina Ricci's final dress in Sleepy Hollow. the silhouette, the stripes....love.

Tim Burton at the MoMA

the beautiful darkness that is Tim Burton.

I finally got to see the exhibit on April 15th. although i prefer bold colors in my personal life, something about Tim's black, white and grey world pulls me in every time. maybe I have an inner goth just waiting to come out? The Nightmare Before Christmas, Sleepy Hollow, Beetlejuice and Edward Scissorhands are a few of my all-time favorite movies. they're dark, quirky, visually stimulating with complicated costumes and great musical scores by Danny Elfman. to see original sketches from the process of these movies is beyond inspiring. of course it was insanely crowded and people don't mind being in your personal space, but what else can you expect in New York mid-day on a Thursday? because of that, it was impossible to see everything, but what we did get to see was great stuff.

Here are some highlights:

the entrance to the exhibit

the carousel in the blacklight room

the wall of women

the alien series

see more amazingness here

there are quick sketches on napkins and sketchpads, hand written notes to Johnny Depp, concept boards by his assistants, and so much more that you wouldn't expect to see. we completely forgot to check out the garden where the topiaries from Edward Scissorhands are. one of the comments a friend of mine made was that he uses the same characters again and again in all of his stories. but don't we do the same thing in fashion? what's old becomes new again with a slight twist. so why can't an artist make a ghost-dog once in red and again in translucent white? sometimes you have to revisit the ideas that didn't work out the first time and rework it.

I hope to one day own a piece of art from Tim Burton. now that would truly be amazing.

Lady Gaga & Beyoncé in "Telephone"

A lot of people probably won't like this. Since I'm such a strange lil lady, I frikkin love it :). The colors, costumes, story line and dancing are such great inspiration. If the car looks familiar to you, it's from Kill Bill with flames added to the front. What are your thoughts?

Gossip Girl season 3!!

It seems like forever since GG episodes aired and I've been going through some serious withdrawal. But that ends this Monday! If you missed last season, here's a brief on the major events:
  • Georgina is back to her old tricks. Her crazy never ends.
  • Dan had a threesome with his girlfriend (played by Hillary Duff) and Vanessa. Not a smart move! He later professed his love to Vanessa. She pretty much brushes it off.
  • Jenny met a drug dealer...and liked it! Little J is becoming very money hungry, very fast.
  • Eric tries to take down Jenny as the new Queen B, but all his attempts backfire. Because of his focus on Jenny, Jonathan breaks up with him.
  • Chuck is haunted by Bart's ghost on the anniversary of his death. When he finally agrees to visit Bart's grave, he sees....*gasp*...his mother!?
  • Blair gets Lady Gaga to perform at an NYU play she put together. Awesome!
  • Serena and Tripp have a short-lived affair. She finds out he is secretly meeting up with his soon-to-be-exwife, although he said he was with his grandfather. Maureen (the wife) shows up at their love shack and tries to convince Serena to remain the side chick while Tripp makes his way to Washington. Everybody wins, right?
  • Umm...no. Serena flips out and demands to be taken home. When Tripp crashes into a tree and leaves her alone in the car, Nate saves the day. (Well, the paramedics do actually but he called them.) When will Serena stop making such horrible choices?
  • Serena finds out Lily knew where her father was all along.
  • Lily inadvertently pushes Rufus into the arms of the co-op board president...who's a sexy single woman with a very seduction gaze.
I'm sure there's a lot I left out, but there was sooooo much going on last season. Rumor has it that Season 3 contains a steamy sex scene. Wonder which pair it'll be: Chuck/Blair or Nate/Serena OR Dan/Vanessa, maybe??

Can't wait!!

photos courtesy from www.tvfanatic.com

Dress My Hair

It seems like oversized bows and flowers are still in for hair accessories. If that's not your thing, here are some cute pieces at Forever 21 for less than $5 each. (Ok the 1st one still has a huge bow, but the print is cute, no?)