DIY Embellished Denim Vest

It’s been a while since I posted a DIY!

My brother bought a vintage denim jacket a few months back and never wore it so he gave it to me. Unfortunately, it was a bit too oversized for my liking so I decided to get a little crafty. I cut off the sleeves and frayed the edges, only to come to the conclusion that I still couldn’t pull it off.

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It was just still too big for me to feel like I could wear it without drowning. I like to think that my personal style is a combination of the masculine and feminine aesthetics, like my personality. Like yin and yang, you can’t have too much of one without the other. So for this oversized jacket-turned-vest, I decided to give it some feminine flare with pearl embellishments that would detract away from the large fit.

Everything that I used to make this DIY was already in my possession or bought at a thrift store. I was browsing Goodwill’s jewelry section for cheap pearl necklaces I could unstring and other brassy, bronzy statement embellishments and found a bag of 40 freshwater pearls for $3. Okay, so I don’t know the market value of precious gems, but I figured if it was at Goodwill, it was a steal. Can someone give my a figure on a typical price? I didn’t find any other jewelry pieces that inspired me, but I did have a stash of vintage buttons right in my crafting hoard.

Now here’s a photo montaaaage!

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I ran out of white thread so I had to run to the store before finishing, but I couldn’t wait to give it a test run and Instagram last night.

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Wow, you can really tell the difference up close that I started using white thread before buying invisible thread. Invisible thread is truly invisible.

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I love mismatching textures and patterns! Oh and some jewelry chain just because.

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The finished project :D Can you tell I’m obsessed with Instagraming my projects?

IMG_3071I am totally flaunting this vest for the first day of Spring semester on Monday.

 

 

Let’s blog about Christmas for a second

I was planning on doing a bunch of separate posts for all the things I’m about to write about but I’m not very good at keeping up with my blogging so I’ll just talk a little about everything in 5 parts starting… now!

Part I: Christmas Knitting

I think most people can agree that the Christmas season starts (immediately) after Thanksgiving, and that’s when I started on knitting my Christmas gifts. You’ve already seen what I made for my friends so all that was left was the ornaments for adult relatives. I made a variety of knitted Christmas ornaments which I was planning taking pictures of and making a post on before Christmas but in all the pre-Christmas mayhem and time crunch, I completely forgot… again. Here’s a picture of some of them wrapped up lol:

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Some patterns I completely improvised and some I took from patterns. Here are a few of my favorite Christmas ornament patterns that you can put to use for next year’s holiday season: Wreath Ornament, Christmas Decoration I, Christmas Decoration II

Part II: New York

Ok, so first on the Christmas festivities stop was Long Island, NY where my mom’s side of the celebrated Christmas early. We opened gifts on Saturday night. I have about a million cousins (ok maybe I’m exaggerating a little) so Christmas gift giving is more for the little ones, and this goes for both sides of my family. The gifts I got this year were minimal but I’ll always appreciate cash and giftcards! :P

Present explosion! But almost none of them were for me...

Present explosion! But almost none of them were for me…

Hold up. I did get this one from "Santa."

Hold up. I did get this one from “Santa.”

The most notable part about my Long Island stay was the spontaneous trip to Manhattan taken by my brother, cousins, and I. I’ll be writing more about this later! Considering I visited an East Village yarn shop, it was a pretty big deal and exciting moment in my knitting experience.

Part III: Back to Delaware

On Christmas Eve, my family road tripped back to Delaware in time for a little get together with some members on my dad’s side of the family and midnight mass. Here’s my Christmas mass outfit!

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And it started snowing! For a moment I really believed that we could have a white Christmas, but it melted by morning :(

Part IV: Cookie Cutter Pancakes

The lack of snow however, did not stop me from making Christmas shaped chocolate chip pancakes for breakfast.

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So these were a little tricky to get the hang of but here’s some tips on how to do it:

  1. Make your favorite pancake batter recipe.
  2. Gather your cookie cutters and make sure they are the metal kind. You don’t want to get any melted/burnt plastic in your delicious pancakes!
  3. Coat the cookie cutters in oil. I didn’t have any PAM spray handy so I used a paper towel soaked in vegetable oil to coat my cookie cutters which became very messy very quickly.
  4. Place the cookie cutters on your pan or griddle.
  5. Pour the batter in the molds. It helps if your batter is on the more liquidy side.
  6. Once one side is cooked (bubbly on the top side) lift the cutters out with a pair of tongs (they’ll be hot).
  7. Shapes with a lot of little crevices are tricky to make. I found that the bell and ball ornament shape were the easiest because they had very little small segments. If things get stuck use something (for me a chopstick) to push the pancake down as you lift the cutter out.
  8. Flip them over and cook the other side.
  9. Serve with your favorite toppings!

Part V: A lot of children and some more present opening

After breakfast, it was off to my grandparent’s to open gifts with my dad’s side of the family. And if you think the six cousins I have on one side of the family is a lot try 12 (with one more on the way and 2 more cousins on the other side of the country.)

Three of my little cousins and ALL the shoes.

Three of my little cousins and ALL the shoes.

So I’ve heard that this is an Asian thing, piling up all the shoes at the front door. That’s just a little glimpse of how huge my family is. We ate, caught up, played with babies, and opened presents. Christmas really makes me want to be a little kid again. I have to admit I was a little jealous of the sets of coloring books, crayons, and markers that were being gifted.

Coloring!

Coloring!

So what did I get? The best gift was definitely a pair of button earrings from an Etsy seller. Only one pair of uncle and aunt really get my quirky sense of style. I would have been satisfied with a repeat Christmas 2 years ago when I got mostly yarn, but no yarn this year. I got some lotions and other beauty supplies, a scarf, and a bracelet. Again, most of the gifts were for the wee ones and I don’t blame anyone. How could you resist buying toys for adorable children?

Everyone thought my little ornaments were neat, while they were literally a last minute thought for me. If I had time I would have made a few people more substantial things but what’s a college crafter gonna do? I did wear the sweater I made earlier this year and got loads of aunts asking for commissions haha. And plenty of people trying to get me to sell on Etsy without the knowledge that I’ve been there, done that, and basically given up for now. I actually have a better time and earn more just from taking commissions from family and friends so I’m just going to continue with that for now.

And that’s how my Christmas went! I hope all my readers had a merry Christmas, and even if you don’t celebrate I hope you did something fun. I’ve got a few posts lined up for the time between now and New Years so keep on the lookout for more from me.

5 Outfits I’m Proud Of

If you follow me on Instagram or Twitter, you might have seen my occasional outfit of the day posts. I’m a little addicted to PicStitch, too. I like to document my craziest/best outfits. I tend to also wear makeup on these days. It’s a rare occasion. Here’s a few from the past few months!Trying to be professional: H&M Polkadot Dress, Hotkiss Black Flates, Vintage Blazer (’twas my mother’s), Time Turner necklace (made from a chain from another necklace and Time Turner keychain from Harry Potter World)

Just another school day: Vintage Black and White Floral Dress, Forever21 Sweater, Thrifted Grey Socks (don’t worry they were new!), Vintage Brown Shoes, Knitted Collar (made my me)

Not my birthday suit: H&M Striped Sweater, Teal Pants (from TJ Maxx), Black Combat Boots (from Kohls), Time Turner Necklace

Hippie for the day: Forever21 Top (thrifted at Goodwill), Vintage Floral Maxi Skirt, American Eagle Necklace, Woven Belt

Show off: Knitted sweater (by me), Banana Republic Black Tank Top, Wet Seal Lace and Floral Skirt, H&M Leggings, Vintage Maine Woods Boots

If for some reason you haven’t noticed, I love thrift shopping for both awesome vintage finds and clothes that I could buy in stores for much cheaper. I love mixing and matching vintage and new pieces. Maybe I should do Outfit of the Day posts everyday?

Vintage Party Dress Search

I love shopping vintage and thrifting! That goes for everyday clothes and special occasions. I’ve done it once before when I bought a vintage dress for my high school senior prom and I’m in the process of doing it once more!

Every year the marching band holds a band banquet at the end of the season in December, which is like band prom, except it’s 10 times more fun than regular prom. Last year, I just wore the same dress I wore at prom, but this year, I’m looking for a new dress. It’s basically just an excuse for me to splurge a little more than my usual $5 at the local Goodwill for a vintage/thrifty find.

When searching for a vintage dress, it’s difficult to find that perfect balance between something that is unique to it’s era (hello 80s!) and something that will fit in with current trends. Thankfully, vintage-inspired is very in! However, I don’t want to buy a dress that is too similar to the one I previously bought.

Banquet 2011: That’s me in the 80s sequins and bow!

So I’ve been scouring Etsy’s vintage section for the perfect dress. I’m keeping a list of favorites so far and here’s a few dresses/themes that I love:

Red

ragdollvintage @Etsy

Vintage 70s/80s Cherry Red Flapper Fringe Cocktail Party Mini Dress – $155

It fits our marching band show theme: Western! I love the fringe. This dress just screams “fun” and “I want to dance!” It’s also perfect to pay some homage to the the flappers of the 1920s who paved the way for women in America. However, at $155, this dress is way over my budget. A girl can dream, can’t she?

ragdollvintage @Etsy

Vtg 50s/60s Cherry Red Stretch Diamond Rhinestone Embroidered Cocktail Dress – $175

Sigh, another dress I can’t afford. I love the playfulness of this dress. The high-low skirt makes this piece the mullet of dresses. I also like the coverage on the arms. The modesty of the cut definitely plays down the color and makes this super wearable. The rhinestones also get rid of the need for any neck jewelry. It’s simple, yet makes a statement.

StellarVintage @Etsy

Gorgeous Red 90s Bandage Mini Dress – $28

Something in my budget! The 90s had some crazy trends, and some of them I question about ever returning, however this dress is something the 90s did right. You can barely tell it was from the 90s. The cut and fit of this dress is so typical of any other party dress you’d find on a college girl on a Friday night that it kind of loses its appeal to me. It’s hard to believe that clothes from the 1990s are considered vintage because I was alive then! But still, I like the zig-zag detail on the dress and the color is unique and it’s cheap and vintage, so it’s definitely worth considering as an option.

Lace

POMPOMCLOTHING @Etsy

70s Coral Lace Dress – Romantic Sheer Floral Lace Dress – $56

This dress is not only red, but it’s also lace! I love the fact that this dress has a little length. Lace is a really popular current trend in fashion. It also works for semi-formal events and can be dressed down with the right accessories. A versatile piece always lengthens your wardrobe. The price is also just about right. That’s probably as high as I’m willing to spend.

AppleBranchesVintage @Etsy

Vintage 1960s Black Sleeveless Beaded Lace Dress – $49

This black lace dress is super classy! Rather than the dress being made entirely of lace, the lace top portion makes a subtle statement. I love how the flowy skirt contrasts the fitted lace top. Black is also a much safer color to wear, although I was trying to stay away from black and white this time.

Ruffles

GypsyStardustDesign @Etsy

Vintage 70s Purple RUFFLE TRIMMED Mini Party Dress M – $52

I’m not sure that I’d be pull off this bold color, but I still like it. In case you haven’t noticed, I really like balancing out lengths and proportions by either having a modest top and short skirt or a more revealing top with a fuller-length skirt. This dress does it all.

LastDanceVintage @Etsy

Girly Gala Glam Party Dress. Vintage 1970s. Little Black Dress. Cascading Chiffon Handkerchief Ruffles. Size Extra Small. – $30

You can’t see it in this picture, but the back of this dress is a huge SURPRISE! It’s super low cut. I’ve definitely never worn something so… provocative! But again, a balance of skin and modesty. It’s all about the balance. I’m a little on the short side, however, so I’m afraid that the longer length of the skirt would only make me look more like a midget.

StellarVintage @Etsy

Black Sequin Ruffle Party Dress Small – $30

The ruffles on this dress are a little more understated but the sequins make up for it. My other dress also had a black sequined top so I’m a bit reluctant to getting one so similar. This dress definitely conveys a different feeling, though.

1980s Ruffly Skirts

AppleBranchesVintage @Etsy

Vintage 1980s Floral Colorful Gold Iridescent Prom Party Dress – $61

I have an obsession with bows and this dress is just another manifestation of it. It’s black but has a sort of gold, glowy floral pattern. It’s just the right amount of color to make the dress stand out. However, my other dress also has a bow so getting this dress is a little questionable in terms of getting something different.

AppleBranchesVintage @Etsy

Vintage 1980s Dark Blue Rose Velvet Embellished Tulle Party Dress – $63

This dress is my absolute favorite one that I’ve found so far. And it’s only slightly more than my budget so I’d definitely be willing to splurge on it. The main reason why I love it so much is that it reminds me of the Japanese Loli trend. Everything about it is just perfect! The little lace detail, the ruffly skirt, the balance between girly and edgy, the dark color. I wanted to stay away from black and a darker jewel tone is just enough. Gah, I just want it so much. If no one buys it in the upcoming weeks, this one might be the one I buy.

Now that I’ve shown you all these awesome dresses you’re not going to go and buy them all off of Etsy, right? Haha, who ever gets these finds are going to be lucky girls. I’ll probably be making my decision within a few weeks. Banquet is only a month away! Boy does the semester fly by fast.

Are you as obsessed with vintage as me? Have you worn vintage to a special occasion? Which dress do you like the best? Let me know what you think in the comments!