April 28, 2017

Friday Faves Vol. 2

Here's some fun stuff that's catching my eye lately:

These cool magnetic pineapple plant holders from etsy.

This cool (and surprisingly simple) DIY for beaded shoes with an eye motif.

Actress Sarah Ramos found a rom-com she wrote when she was 12, so she decided to actually make it - now we have the wonderful strangeness of City Girl.

This amazing makeup look from @nickeilgenesis - umm, those BROWS!

This beautiful work of art is actually an edible cake!

This DIY moon phase wall hanging would be super easy to make!

This map that shows what Pangea would look like with current national borders. Weird to imagine I'd be just a hop, skip & a jump away from Morocco!

This collection of gumball machine prizes from the 1970s! I'd want the little teeth.

This digital art by Markos Kay that imagines the human body as only blood vessels.

This behind-the-scenes photo of Sarah from Jeopardy's 'Clue Crew' getting ready before a shoot. I'm genuinely shocked that she does her own hair and makeup!

Have you seen any cool stuff lately?

April 19, 2017

How to Resize Your Jeans So They'll Actually Fit You Correctly For Once

Ugh. Buying jeans is the worst. Show me someone who says they enjoy it, and I'll show you someone from whom you need to back away slowly. It's difficult to find jeans that fit your budget, fit your style and fit your bod, but that last one is especially rough. We've all tried on jeans that were laughable on us - a foot too long, baggy in the hips, not enough tush room - but how many pairs have come close to being perfect, but aren't quite right?

Those are the jeans I want to talk about. The almost-there jeans - they can be saved!

Since we're all shaped differently than the one fit model a particular brand chooses for their jeans, almost no pair will be a perfect fit on us. What are our options? Settle for close enough or take them to a tailor and have them adjusted for a fee. 

…But there's another option! (this is my version of the classic infomercial line "There has to be a better way!" preceded by footage of you struggling to understand how pants go on your body)

I mean, who HASN'T been there?!

You (yes, YOU) can custom fit your own jeans, and it's way easier than you probably think. This tutorial will show you how to custom size your jeans to your hip and/or leg measurements so you never experience the issues that come with so many ill-fitting pants.

Let's do this!  

First: wash & dry those jeans! You don't want to fit them and then have them shrink. 

You can do this two different ways, so I'll quickly show you both. Jeans usually have a thicker, more pronounced seam on either the inner or outer edge of the pants. It'll be easier and less noticeable if you resize from the edge with the less pronounced seam, so that you don't have to remove or hide the more pronounced seam. 

In the first method, we trim excess fabric from the outside seam. This can also be helpful if you want to remove excess fabric from the waistband because you can continue your new seam right up through the top of the jeans (though there are more professional methods to do that if you want to invest the time). 

To start, lay your inside-out jeans flat and place a well-fitting pair on top of them. Align the jeans at the crotch and pin them together along the inside seam of one leg (seen above).

With chalk, trace around the leg of the well-fitting jeans onto the jeans you're resizing. In my case, I needed to shorten the new jeans so I traced the bottom edge as well. Repeat on the other leg.

The second method is basically the same, except we'll be removing fabric from the inside seam. This is the method I used on my jeans because it's a little easier and there are less things, like waistbands and pockets, in the way.

Again, lay the inside-out jeans flat with a well-fitting pair on top of them. You still want to align them at the crotch, but in this method you'll line up the outside seams and pin along them.

Use the chalk to trace along the well-fitted pair of jeans onto the jeans you're resizing. It's easier to have both pairs inside out so you don't need to worry so much about chalk marks on the top pair.

Next, you'll just need to pick out some thread. You can go with one that matches your denim or one that matches the existing stitching on your jeans. It won't show on the outside/right side of your jeans, but will show if you choose to also hem the jeans. I chose a dark thread for the side seam and a matching gold thread for the bottom hem.

Now we'll simply show along the chalkline we drew before. You could sew slightly outside of the chalk line to give a little extra room just in case, but I sewed right on the line since my jeans were very stretchy.

We want to sew first with a basting stitch, which is a loose temporary stitch. This way you can try on the jeans to check the fit and if you need to remove any portion of the stitch it'll be much easier.

When you've completed the basting stitch on both legs, try on the inside-out jeans. I found my fit to be satisfactory except around my ankles, so I drew new chalk lines where I wanted the jeans to fit while still wearing them.

Make any sewing adjustments and try the jeans on again to give final fit approval.

When you're good with the fit, sew the permanent stitches. I use a zig zag stitch because it provides more stretch. I then sew a slightly tighter basting stitch right over the zig zag stitch for a little more security. I also add a tight, straight stitch on the outside of the zig zag stitch (dramatic reenactment above) as a last line of defense if the seam ever opens up. I'm kinda paranoid about my pants just bursting off my body suddenly, but you only need to add the seams you want here.

You can see above that there is plenty of extra fabric outside (in this case, to the left) of the stitches. If you don't need to adjust the length of the jeans, just trim that part off and you're done!

I recommend using pinking shears because it prevents the fabric from fraying, plus it gives you a reason to own pinking shears, which are one of the cutest parts of the crafting world.

If you do need to adjust the length of the jeans, you can follow this tutorial I made. Alternately, you can simply fold your jeans up to the right length while still inside out, run a straight stitch around the perimeter of the ankle, and trim the excess with pinking shears if you don't mind a more unfinished look inside. I won't tell ;)

And that's how (relatively) easy it is to custom fit your own jeans! Honestly, once you try this you'll get the hang of it, and custom tailoring will just be another tool in your DIY arsenal. Warning: you may get addicted to custom fitting all of your clothes. At least you'll look great, though! 

Have you ever made DIY skinny jeans? Got any hot tips on clothes-fitting? Can you tell me why jeans are so mean to us?

April 14, 2017

Friday Faves

Something new!

Like all good internet dwellers, I often stumble upon things I find beautiful, useful or just plain interesting, and want to share them. I'm going to do so with a bi-weekly segment called Friday Faves. It'll be a collection of stuff that's caught my eye since we last spoke and that I think you'll like too, because let's be honest - I can only text my sister so many times a day.

Charley Harper Collection for The Land of Nod

If you don't have kids or a vaguely problematic pinteresting problem you might be like, Land of WHO NOW? Reasonable. The Land of Nod is Crate & Barrel's children's branch and they just announced a collection of bedding and housewares that is, yes, technically for babies, featuring the art of noted midcentury illustrator and personal fave Charley Harper. I want ALL of this shit, and am considering how to tell my dude that I'll be ditching our queen size mattress for a crib.

You Gotta Little Lipstick on Your Ear

These amazing handmade acrylic lipstick earrings from Honey B Gold come in red AND pink!

It'd Be Really Hard to Sleep Here

This futuristic, neon pink bedroom is straight outta Jem. It also kinda makes me feel like I've been shrunken down into a Barbie Dream House bedroom circa 1986.

Ring Around the Roses

These beautiful clear resin rings filled with real flowers, hand-dyed in rainbow hues!

You're Too Sweet

These adorable food-themed office supplies are too sweet to pass up.

Taking Petty to a Whole New Level

Boston's infamous Skinny House is up for sale! Just a cool 900K for this tiny sliver of home, that's just over six feet at its narrowest. This house exists for one simple reason: spite. It was built on a remaining scrap of land to block light and harbor views from the occupant's brother next door. And you thought you knew how to hold a grudge.

More Exciting Than Watching Paint Dry

These paint palette enamel pins are so damn cute!

This Really Lights Up a Room

This sculpture by artist Matt McVeigh looks pretty on the surface, but has more to say.

B.Y.O.C. (Bring Your Own Crimper)

This tumblr is great for a little stroll down beauty product memory lane. It's a fun flash of nostalgia to see products you loved in junior high, and ads you didn't realize have been tattooed somewhere on your brain ever since you saw them in an old issue of Seventeen.

Give Them a Hand

These illustrations - and there are a ton - are always hands on a pink background, but with a new activity (yes, eating guac is an activity). I'm just weirdly obsessed with hand art.

What cool stuff have you been peeping on lately?

April 10, 2017

The Amazing $5 Liquid Lipstick You're Not Wearing - And Why You Should Be

Wet n Wild Liquid Catsuit Matte Lipstick

There are two kinds of people in the world: those who see the words 'liquid lipstick' and think of the chic matte finish and long-wearing ease, and those who see the words 'liquid lipstick' and run for the hills, all screams and finger crosses, swearing off the product like they've seen a demonic possession.

I get the hesitation - liquid lipsticks can be dry as hell, hard to apply and uncomfortable to wear. I've tried a few that left my lips in a virtual vice that no makeup remover short of straight oil could remove, so I feel your pain. 

That said, some liquid lipsticks are just as comfortable as traditional bullet lipsticks (and let's be real, nothing is as comfortable as a great lip balm) and give you hours of steadfast wear without the need to check for touchups in your butter knife, like some cliche lady in a rom-com. If you're gonna act like a cliche lady in a rom-com, at least do something cool like a shopping montage - preferably on someone else's dime. 

If you're willing to try a liquid lip and love a true matte finish, you simply have to grab a Wet n Wild Liquid Catsuit. Maybe two. Maybe six. I can't say; I don't know your journey.

Here are five reasons why you need Liquid Catsuit:

a. These things are cheap! Five bucks a pop (less with constant drugstore sales!) means you can impulse buy without regret.

b. These things are great! Because cheap means nothing if the product sucks. They go on smooth and opaque and dry down to a truly matte finish.

c. These things last! I could easily get a day's worth of wear on one application, aside from that pesky business of eating and drinking, which will impair the wear. Since it dries down after application, you're not going to get a ton of, say, transfer to your coffee mug, but if you go hard on a sandwich - and by all means, go hard on a sandwich - you're going to lose some of that lippie.

d. These things are comfortable! Remember those lip vices I mentioned earlier? Not these, baby! A super matte finish usually comes at a cost, but I wear these all day without really feeling them. They feel no worse than any traditional lipstick to me. I'd compare them most closely to NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream, but these are still a bit more comfortable. 

e. These things look cool! Okay, this is shallow, but the packaging is very sleek - a thicker, shorter acrylic tube with a very secure click to close. Plus, a feline lady character leaning on the logo. Not necessary, but it doesn't hurt.

Wet n Wild Liquid Catsuit Swatches in (L to R) Rebel Rose, Berry Recognize, Missy and Fierce

Wet n Wild Liquid Catsuit on Lips in (L to R) Rebel Rose, Berry Recognize, Missy and Fierce

Interested? I thought so. I mean, it's called Liquid Catsuit, a name so over-the-top-ridiculous, that it swings back around to being kind of awesome. Liquid - yes, catsuit - I guess? Well, no, what am I saying? NO. This is not a catsuit of any kind, if that wasn't made clear by the fact that it's a tube of lipstick. Allow for this one potential flaw in the product and I think you'll still be happy. 

Liquid Catsuit comes in 13 shades, from nude to vampy. Check out these swatches:

Have you ever tried these? What's your favorite lip color?

April 5, 2017

FASHION: Minimalist Hair Clips

Isn't it great when something can be cute and useful? No, I'm not talking about YOU (but I see you, girl), I'm talking about these adorable minimalist hair clips, which aside from being totally chic and spunky, also manage to keep your overgrown bangs outta your face.

I think we can all use something that keeps our spur-of-the-moment, midnight-in-the-bathroom-cut bangs out of our faces while we wait through the mandatory grow out phase, only to trim them again when we see the one good photo of ourselves with bangs and wonder why we don't try that look again.

But, duh, you don't have to have semi-regrettable bangs to use these hair clips. Basically any hair you have will be enhanced by these metal designs. Can you imagine a world in which your hair was not improved by the silky silhouette of a cat's tail? Didn't think so.

Some of my current favorite minimalist hair clips for you to drool on:

There's just something about the simplicity of these accessories that appeals to me. I'm on the hunt for perhaps a moon shaped hair clip so I can maybe wear my hair down for once without having to constantly touch it and shove it behind my ear. See? Cute AND useful!

Which hair clip is your favorite? Or are you more into maximalist hair accessories? I'd love to see those! Do you or do you not NEED those whiskers in your life?!

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