Monday, October 31, 2011

Most of my creative energy goes into decorating my home.  I want to 

show you my lastest addition......

The mini-chandelier in my studio was bought more for ambiance 

than lighting.  But it's charm was missing when I originally had

traditional white shades on it.  A bit stodgy!  One night, I just took 

them down and ripped off the fabric trying not to remember how much 

they cost!  Don't you just love doing that?  Taking something

apart with complete abandonment??  Staring at their poor

little skeletal shape I proceeded to create a new attitude for 


Using a cotton, gauzy fabric (which I coffee stained), I sewed a

tube which I slipped over the frame.

I did a gathering stitch around the one end as that would help make

it more evenly distributed when gluing to the frame.  I'm afraid if you

didn't it would effect the attachment at the other end.  Get out

the ol' trusty glue gun and have at it!  Glue gathered top first

then glue the bottom.

This is the completed look.  I made the tube about 4 inches

wider than the base so that would leave a full look.  And I

made it taller so that I could play with the extra fabric, gluing it

to create a draped appearance.  The lining fabric now has a

more vintage feel. 

Now for the fun part.. and the part that takes the longest for me.

Wham!.. bam! decision making is NOT my forte!  Going through my

stash of vintage, crocheted doilies I found those that draped well 

and glued that over my base fabric.  Final decisions made were

to use burlap.. hey!  I washed it like I had read about it and it 

works!! ...  tulle, more of the coffee-stained lace, and I made

rosettes from silk.  Embellished those with pearls (would you

expect anything else from me??!!) and rhinestones.  Voila!!!!

I also made the cord cover and my back this morning is not

thanking me from the contortions I made to get it up there!

The price one pays for creativity!  It was worth it!!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

The Goodie Bag

They changed something from last year... the goodie bags were

handed out at the end of the runway show.  Brilliant!  As this

was so weighted down with products (and full-sized ones, at

that) it would have been difficult to maneuver through the

throngs of people carrying this.  No slinging it over my shoulder

this time!  Fortunately, my husband was waiting 

outside the tent to carry the load.  Yes, that was a good thing as 

we were staying at a hotel at the opposite end of the "Mag Mile". 

I could not wait to dive right in and see what all they gave us.

Patience.. patience... 


Ok... not so patient!  But I just love me some biscotti!  However, even

though I wanted to wash it down with the bottle of Honest Tea,

I refrained.  Now, not everything will be a winner as you can 

imagine.  But I have chosen a few products to start with...

Weleda Sea Buckthorn Body Lotion

Pureology Illuminating Curl (hoping to get my hair to remember
that it WAS curly at one time!)

Anastasia  LashLifting Mascara

Marni Advanced Lip Color in Classy Nude (noticed that Lancome 
included a nude shade of lipstick in their giveaway at the store)

Ecru Sunlight Styling Spray

As I said, not all will be winners but with last year's goodie bag

I did find two that were outstanding....

Abba Pure Performance Hair Care..... love these products for

sensitive skin, 100% vegan, free of synthetic dyes, sulfates

and DEA-free.  The other product that was a winner was....

Nature's Gate "Glow" Lotion.  Takes the glare off my pale skin

to make it look "sun-kissed all year round"!  I cant' tell you how

many products I've tried- both high and low end- that either 

smell or don't absorb well.  Love, love, love it!

So there you have it!  Now, I need to open that bottle of Honest

Tea (Heavenly Lemon Tulsi)... just a tad sweet .... and peruse

my loot again!!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Look What You've Done To Me, Tim Gunn! (Part 2)

There is an audible gasp as everyone recognizes that the show is about to begin!

Music vibrates in the tent as the first designer's model starts walking down the runway.

DISCLAIMER: I will have to apologize for the quality of the photos.  My little point

and shoot did it's best to capture the clothes and models.  But I now understand why

so many bloggers progress to a "big girl" camera!  And good grief!  It sure is hard to

multi-task as I so desperately wanted to inhale the moment as each girl walked down

the runway.  So, there is my humble apology.

Now... let's begin!!

Notice this designer's signature loose style with an edge.  The shorts were darling!

Very short with rolled cuffs and grommets. Nice touch to the flowing, tunic top.

Love, love, love this one!  The hard with the soft.  The "edge" with the feminine.  Love the armband!

This designer also created a lot of movement in her pieces with the embellishment of

simple, ruffled detailing.  Think of a rippled shoreline where the water has created

patterns in the sand.  That was the same feeling here.  Again... love the armbands!!

A rocker's edge.

This was one of my better shots.. thank you very much!!

Same designer.... my favorite!

Great color combinations!  This was the second designer.  The model gave me a chuckle

as she reminded me of a stepford wife.  So perfect!  She maintained that blank model

stare the whole time.

Two models going down the runway at once makes such an impact.  The luxurious red hair is to die for.

As you can tell, this designer was into soft fabrics that dictate a 70's ultra feminine feel.

This was not one of my better photos.  It shows me flip-flopping between being in awe

of this top and knowing that I needed to snap her picture.  What it is to show is a

casual, breezy summer top that could be dressed up or down.  Nice combination with

the skirt.

Ok... this designer was also one of my favs!  Each model rocked the geek-chic glasses.

The point of view strikes a resemblance to fashion in the 70's.  I actually remember

sewing a dress similar to one shown back then.  Love.. love... love!!!!

               There's that darling, perfect stepford wife!!  So feminine for spring!

                                                        Beautiful overlay!

                                                          Mod influence!

                                                         Gasps!  Applause!!

I remember this model from last year.  Her walk was so unique.  Step with left foot...

cock head to left.  Step with right foot .... cock head to right.  All with attitude!

And she's adorable!  Hard to see the detailing in this photo but very luxurious

and detailed.

                                                      The long and short of it!

                                                             To die for!

           GRAND FINALE:  The designers walking down the runway

                                        with one of their models ....

Forty minutes... 10 emerging designers.... over way to quickly.  Push the "replay" button!

Ok... some real critiquing???  Michael Kors and Nina Garcia were each sitting on one of

my shoulders as some of the garments came down the runway.

"Look at those seams!!!  Before you send that down the runway, press them.  They're

puckering all over the place!"

"That skirt!  No woman would be caught dead wearing something that had a tuck taken

in between her butt cheeks!  What were you thinking?"

Seriously, even as I write this I can hear them speaking those very words.  BUT those

were the few exceptions.  There was some serious designing going on that night!  And

they gave me an experience that will hold me for a while.

                     Another beautiful, inspiring evening in Chicago.  Until next year.......

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Look What You've Done To Me, Tim Gunn! (Part 1)

                                                                 My Kinda Town.. Chicago is!

Each year Chicago hosts "the art of FASHION" and each year I wait for the

 opportunity to purchase a VIP Pass.  It's so worth the money as it gets you a

 goodie bag that is AMAZING!.. gets you early entrance.... and gets you

 appetizers... drinks... and first dibs on seating. So, with precious ticket firmly

 clutched in hand, I hailed a cab to take me to this........

                                                  entrance of the fashion tent

The excitement and anticipation was palpable!  The weather? PERFECT for an

 October evening. As I waited in line to get my VIP wristband that assures early

 entrance PLUS ... did I mention, AMAZING goodie bag???!!!! ... I watched the

 newbies giddy with excitement and the rather calmer demeanor of those of us

 who have attended before.  Yeah, right! I was chatting with anyone who

 would listen... striking up conversations with newfound "friends". I couldn't

help myself!  I mean, seriously... years of being an avid fan of  Project

Runway has left me loving everything about the creative process of being a

fashion designer.  And like the finalists on the show, I pass out at the thought

of being anywhere near a runway!  The energy!!!

With wristband on, I now enter the tent.  Oh,my gosh..... music blaring... the

 vibration of many conversations going on at once... cameras being flashed,

 both professional and amateur... waiters struggling to get past the throng of

 people as they do their job of offering hors d'oeuvres to those anxious to

 nibble. And the people watching!  I had lots of time to mingle and politely

ask if I could take photographs of some of the most interesting people there.

Such as these great individuals...

                                          a stylist who was very concious of the position of her body when she posed

                                                                                    seriously... how adorable!!
                                check out the jewelry that she designed.. turns out she was one of the designers showing her line
                                                                                              I had no clue! 
                                                                                                 Love them!!!!!

And then time to be seated!  There weren't assigned seats.  A wise person knew

 to be at the front of the line and not feel any compunction about standing your

 ground.  After all, it's all about a great view and chance to see the designs up

 close!  Not embarrassed to say I was among them. But I did it with as much

 grace as I could muster!  And where did I sit?  Second row, aisle seat,middle of

 the runway.  Scored!!!!  I now had more opportunities to people watch such

as these people....

                                                    love the casual hair ...  check out the black gloves on her hands
                                                                                he's pretty amazing, too!

                                                   A woman of age who's stylin'.  She stood up and the necklace of chains
                                                   went down the front and around the back so it became an article of
                                                                             clothing!  All one piece!  Love the glasses!

                                                       A volunteer for the show.  Great haircut... great geek-chic
                                                       glasses and a piercing on her upper lip that did not look
                                                                   out of place on her.  Sorry that it doesn't show
                                                                                        in this photo

Then.... the lights dim... the roar of the crowd grows quiet.... 

and the show begins!!

Check back for Part II!!!

Monday, October 17, 2011

                       College Homecoming '11

                                Can you go home again?
                            Will it seem the same?

College was one of the best times of my life... my first time away from home and I was soooo ready!

Scary making decisions on my own.... but I needed to do that to become my own independent self.

I was tired of living in a town where I knew everyone since first grade.

Tired of pigeon-holing myself into a category of what was expected of me.

Tired of the same ol', same ol'.

(And I can imagine my mother was ready for some peace and quiet!)

I really did a lot of growing up in those four years... not easy to say the least.  But what a way to go!

How fabulous to open your dorm room door to be greeted by the buzz of friends in the hall.
Walk across the campus to your next class seeing so many new faces!

Meet up with friends to decide where you were going for dinner that night.. or what party you'd go to.

Flirting with the boys and wondering which sorority to join.

FALL was the BEST time of the year for me.  The colored leaves...
crunching them as I walked to class..
the smell... that incredible smell in the air....
the football games...
cozy, rainy days where you wished for homemade chocolate chip cookies baking in the oven..
and your mom bringing the warm ones on a plate to you in your room...
listening to James Taylor.. Crosby,Stills, Nash and Young.... Carly Simon..

I have been lucky to "go back home again".  My youngest son is attending the same college.
He has joined the same fraternity as his dad... yes, his dad and I were college sweethearts.
He has fallen in love with a New England girl... yes, I am from New England.
He lived on North Campus, in the same dorm, on the same floor as I did... that is bizarre!!

And I am thrilled that he is creating his own memories!  
                                   the band at football games...

Can you go back home again?  Will it be the same?
No, but "like, Wow, man!"... it sure does feel good!!!